On this chapter of The Queerest Things I Watched Last Week, I fill you in on Ashley and Caro from Nurses, the low-stress Canadian medical drama with enjoyable queer content the world needs right now.
- Nurses – Season 1 Episode 4 “Chrysalis” [Catch Up]
Before many of our regular shows came back, there wasn’t a lot of new stuff to watch with queer content. A few weeks ago, during the last new episode of This is Us, they kept teasing the next show, Nurses, with a promo including a wlw kiss. Even though I wasn’t in the mood to add another medical drama to my watch list, inertia and the promise of queer content kept us on the channel.
Nurses is okay. It’s a Canadian show created by the same team who made Rookie Blue including Tassie Cameron. I love everything Tassie Cameron does, but Nurses is pretty mediocre overall.
Here are some quick one-sentence reviews from the LezWatchTV Slack:
I’ve been enjoying it as a not heavy mental lift with queer in it, but it’s not very good.-Me
Some of the acting is pretty terrible. But overall enjoyable.
I watched the first ep and it’s not good at all but I will probably continue for the gay and to have something on that I don’t have to give all my attention to.
It’s my scroll instagram and watch TV show.
It’s a no-stress medical paint-by-numbers drama.
You get the gist.
But one good thing about the show is the queer content. It’s decent and organically woven in with the straight storylines.
At the start of the first episode, we’re introduced to the five main characters in a “getting ready for the first day of work” montage complete with a Grey’s Anatomy-style voiceover knockoff. Within the first few minutes, we find out one of them is queer in a completely organic reveal.
One of the main characters is a lesbian nurse who woke up with a girl in her bed. No big deal. No long and drawn out coming out story. This is the kind of queer content I want more of.
Queer nurse’s name is Ashley, and her roommate Wolf is one of the other rookie Nurses. An EMT at the hospital named Caro hands Wolf a cooler with fingers in it and tells him to find their owner. Since he is the most annoying character on the show, of course he can’t do it and asks Ashley for help. While she’s trying to help him Caro the EMT walks in and gives him a hard time.
Anyone with even an ounce of gaydar could see the look on Ashley’s face and know these two are going to hook up.
Cool, two queer characters on the very first episode!
In the third episode, Ashley meets up with Wolf at a bar after work where a cute bartender serves them.
Hello, cute queer-coded bartender!
While at the bar, Ashley gets the bad news one of her patients died. She stays at the bar and sad-drinks after Wolf leaves, but look who shows up.
Ashley and Caro hang out until the bar closes, but X (the bartender’s name is X) lets them stay.
There are so many things wrong with making bad 2 am tattoo decisions after a night of drinking. Also, no to stick and poke tattoos, this is Nurses not Orange is the New Black.
Thankfully, Ashley realizes this too and tattoo crisis is adverted.
Caro puts a stop to their makeout with “I don’t date people I work with.” but this is a pretty low-stakes TV relationship roadblock.
There are so many thing I love about this so far:
- We had 3 (probably) queer characters in a single episode. TV always has single queer characters in a vacuum with no queer friends or community.
- Everyone’s out. There’s no hand-wringing coming out arc. The queer characters have organic chemistry and hook up just like straight characters would.
- Since Ashley’s already out, Caro putting the brakes on things is not a devastating event. She makes a jokey comment about quitting her job and that’s it.
In the next episode (episode four) Ashley and Caro bump into each other a few times at work and it’s cute and flirty.
I love how easy-breezy their whole storyline is. I need some low-stress cute queer content in my life and this is perfect.
It’s a long and uninteresting story, but Ashley gets fired and she and Caro are not co-workers for about 10 minutes. During that time they get to be flirty as usual and Caro talks Ashley into demanding her job back. She is successful because most conflict doesn’t go on for too long on this show, and afterward, Ashley has a chat with Caro by her ambulance.
Well, her no dating co-workers rule didn’t last long and that is fine by me!
In conclusion, Nurses won’t be winning any Emmys, but it has the enjoyable queer content we need right now. My only complaint is the queer stories are not in every episode. Still, I will be watching every week for Ashley and Caro.
This week: Riverdale is back and I’m worried about where the show is going with Cheryl and Toni. I’ll tell you all about it next week.