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Well, I know how hard you work.

Regina Mills to Nurse Ratched src

Nurse Ratched, also known as the Severe Nurse,[1] is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. She débuts in the twelfth episode of the first season and is portrayed by co-star Ingrid Torrance.

Nurse Ratched is based on the character of the same name from the novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.


During First Curse

In charge of the psychiatric ward in the hospital, Nurse Ratched keeps watch for visitors. One day, Regina arrives, handing her a rose, which she thanks her for. Regina remarks that her hard work is acknowledged and asks if anyone came to see "her" today. The nurse informs her there have been no visitors ever. ("Skin Deep")

While Henry's heart rate is dropping, sending most of the medical team in a panic to save him, Jefferson disguises himself as a hospital staff person and enters the password for access to the psychiatric ward. He walks up to the nurse, handing her a cup of tea drugged with sedatives, as she inquiries about the commotion coming from upstairs. After drinking a sip, she promptly passes out, to which he grabs keys from her in order to free Belle. Once the curse is broken, she regains her memories as does everyone else in town. ("A Land Without Magic")

After First Curse

Having lost her memories, Belle is admitted to the hospital, where Ruby attempts to jog her memory with a book she used to love. Belle recounts the night she became amnesiac, in which she saw a fireball, but Ruby lies about it being a hallucination from the hospital drugs. Upset that no one believes her, Belle becomes aggravated and acts out, leaving the nurse to calm her with a sedative. ("Tiny")

When Mr. Gold discovers that Belle is missing from her hospital bed, he calls the nurse in and asks where she is. The nurse replies that Belle should still be here, to which he angrily asks again where she is, causing the nurse to go and check. ("Lacey")

After Second Curse
While on duty at the psychiatric ward of the hospital, Nurse Ratched sits at her usual spot behind the counter and silently witnesses Regina bring her pregnant sister to a cell and lock her up magically. ("Mother")

Before Third Curse
During another day working at the ward, the nurse is looking at some paperwork when Henry walks in, asking if Regina is around, and then purposely spills his drink all over her uniform. Nurse Ratched is horrified by the mess, and she growls at the Chief to help her. She then gets up to search behind the counter for something to clean herself with, and as Henry distracts her with repeated apologies, Hook sneaks past to enter Zelena's cell. ("The Dark Swan")

After Third Curse

During one day, Nurse Ratched interrupts Zelena's reading to bring her lunch. Zelena looks forward to her meal, hoping to satisfy her onion rings craving, until Nurse Ratched uncovers the plate lid, revealing broccoli and other vegetables. She explains that Regina gave clear instructions to serve her healthy meals from local, organically grown food only. A disgusted Zelena refuses the food and orders the nurse to leave her alone, which she promptly does. ("The Bear and the Bow")

When Zelena finds her pregnancy rapidly advancing because of Emma's dark magic, she bangs on her cell door, calling for Nurse Ratched's help. The nurse calls in Regina and Robin, both who inquire about Zelena's condition as they are led to the cell, but the nurse is unable to describe it in words, and instead shows them to Zelena, who now has a large pregnancy belly and is going into labor. With Zelena howling in pain from the contractions while sitting in a wheelchair, the nurse brings her to a hospital room at the upper building level to prepare for the birth. ("Birth")

On the upper hospital floor, Nurse Ratched keeps watch at the receptionist desk, while she is under orders from Regina to not let Zelena through if she attempts to get to the baby incubator room. Upon seeing Zelena stroll in, the nurse immediately accosts her and tries to prevent her from going any further, but the witch puts her to sleep before continuing on. ("Broken Heart")

While Mr. Hyde is incarcerated in the asylum, Nurse Ratched often serves him noodles until, one day, Regina instructs her to replace his meal with a lasagna made by the mayor herself. The nurse hands the dish to Regina, who takes it to the cell, where she plans to bribe Hyde for information on how to defeat the Evil Queen. ("The Other Shoe")

When Regina and Henry come to see Isaac, who was imprisoned in the psychiatric ward for what he did to the them in the alternate world, Nurse Ratched walks them to his cell, noting out loud that she's never seen the man have visitors before. ("Mother's Little Helper")

During Fourth Curse
After the Black Fairy casts her own Dark Curse, Nurse Ratched remains in charge of the hospital's mental ward, now home to Emma. When Emma's son, Henry, comes to visit, Nurse Ratched goes to retrieve Emma. As the mother-and-son pair talks, Emma expresses that she has made a lot of progress in forgetting her supposed delusions about being the Savior and her parents being Snow White and Prince Charming. Henry tries to convince her that these "delusions" are real but he is interrupted by the arrival of Nurse Ratched bringing by Emma's medicine. Nurse Ratched watches as Henry shoves the medicine away from his mother, concerned that the Black Fairy is using it to suppress Emma's memories, and shows her the page in the book he wrote that refers to the upcoming final battle. Emma still won't listen to him and apologizes to Nurse Ratched as she forcefully shuts the book and takes her medicine back. On the arrival of Mayor Fiona, actually the Black Fairy, Nurse Ratched leaves as Fiona makes sure Emma takes her medicine. ("The Final Battle Part 1")


Character Notes

  • Nurse Ratched is one of the only characters in the entire franchise whose Storybrooke counterpart is the literary-based character, as opposed to the Enchanted Forest counterpart of other characters.

Production Notes


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.


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