‘Nurse Jackie’ recap: Always inspiring (sometimes inspiring fear)

This article was originally on a blog post platform and may be missing photos, graphics or links. See About archive blog posts.

Jackie is sober.

Last week, her supply of little blue pills was on its last legs. After rationing out her final few pills over her shift, Jackie ran out to meet her dealer/case worker Bill, only to see him be hit by a truck. Kapow. All her hopes of getting a fix smeared across the asphalt.

Now, Jackie’s completely tapped out. For the first time since we met her two seasons ago, she is completely without a source of illegal narcotics. When Jackie’s high, she is a laser beam of manipulation. Very clean, very effective. When she’s sober, Jackie’s so desperate to get a fix, she fires randomly and misses a lot of the dangers sneaking up on her.

Without her Oxy or Percocet or any other of her favorite little treats, Jackie goes scrounging for any fix she can find. In this area, Jackie still manages some of her fabulous manipulation skills. She starts by trying to swipe all of O’Hara’s ibuprofen. Then she buys out the newsstand of anything with a child-proof lid. She sends out Thor for cough syrup and Robo DXM for the bug she might have caught from her sick kid. The same kid she told Sam she was up with all night when she asks him to pick up No Doze. By the end of the day, she could knit a sweater with all the cotton she’s pulled out of bottles (do they still put cotton in the top of bottles?).

Even when she’s shotgunning mouthwash or chasing a bottle of Advil with a 5-hour Energy, Jackie is still sweating through her scrubs. Her hands are clammy, and she’s lost a little of that charming Nurse Jackie bedside manner. This isn’t the best time for Jackie to be off her game.


While Jackie’s trying to score whatever she can get her hands on, Eddie calls Kelly, the new guy, into his office. Seems a few of those extremely potent Fentanyl patches Eddie asked Kelly to deliver never made it to Oncology. By a few, I mean 10. Ten out of 40. That’s a pretty bold theft. Eddie doesn’t want to hear any of Kelly’s excuses. He just wants this fixed. Though Eddie calls these Schedule 1 drugs, I’m pretty sure everything he lists is Schedule 2. I only know that because I looked it up on Wikipedia. Does anyone know why an ER pharmacy would have any Schedule 1 drugs?

Kelly goes straight to HR. At first, I thought he was going to turn over Jackie. Even when Kelly says he doesn’t remember whom he handed it off to, I still thought he was lying. I thought it was part of a plan to oust Jackie or at least get a little leverage over her. I’m still not sure whether Kelly remembers he gave the bag of patches to Jackie. He did keep a close eye on her for the rest of the episode and seemed to notice whenever another nurse brought her a bag of over-the-counters. What do you think? Do you think Kelly knows Jackie stole the patches?

Either way, Jackie is going to have to deal with the missing patches sooner or later. Dealing with it sober won’t be pretty. She can’t even keep her lies straight about how long she’s been sober. 37 hours? A week? How is she going to be able to string together a workable series of lies if accusations about the patches come her way?

Still, Jackie can dig herself as deep a hole as she wants to right now. She just got approved for another season to help dig herself out.

Around All Saints: Zoey had quite the busy shift herself. Her current beau, Lenny the EMT, managed to poke himself with an EpiPen. Totally by accident, reaching into his bag. Of course, then he decided to leave the needle in his finger long enough to show Jackie. That might have been the bigger mistake. Soon he has epinephrine flooding his system and an overactive heart.

Jackie and Zoey manage to get Lenny’s heart back in line, but he has to remain supervised until they’re sure the epinephrine is out of his system. This leaves Lenny hooked up to a heart monitor or, as Zoey sees it, the world’s best lie detector. Her interrogation proves that Lenny doesn’t want to date other people and that he’s scared of Jackie (big surprise).

Coop spends the day chatting with his future wife on Facebook. She doesn’t know she is Coop’s future wife. He decided that himself. He dated her for a year when they were 16, and now he wants to have a family to replace the one his mother has ruined by getting divorced. Coop is so into Facebook on his phone that he nearly misses the hot blond who got injured at a bachelor’s party. Luckily, creepy stalking is still trumped by being a hot doctor, so the blond forgives him and friends him. Maybe Coop will have a couple options for his first wife.

The Patients: Other than Coop’s blond and Lenny filling a bed, the only patients Jackie had were a father and son with matching dislocated arms. The father just got out of jail and apparently had a bit of a temper even before he went to prison. This was another point where I got slightly confused. I couldn’t tell if the daughter-in-law was asking for help to get out of the hospital in time for the old man’s parole meeting of if she was asking for help not to get to the meeting. Either way, Jackie took matters into her own hands and “accidentally” stuck Daddy Dearest with another EpiPen and then didn’t call the parole officer like she promised.

This seems like another choice that might come back to bite Jackie. She took matters in her own hands once again but not with her usual laser-like precision. Plus she’s dealing with a man with very obvious anger issues. If it isn’t this patient, it will be another down the line. Jackie either needs to come clean or find a fix before it’s too late.


Showtime cancels ‘United States of Tara’

Recap of ‘Nurse Jackie’: Saints, not Angels

Complete ‘Nurse Jackie’ coverage on Show Tracker

-- Andrew Hanson