Nurses season 1, episode 2 recap – “Undisclosed Conditions” secrets and lies

December 16, 2020
Jonathon Wilson 0
NBC, TV Recaps
3.5

Summary

“Undisclosed Conditions” really beds in its core characters in a strong follow-up.

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3.5

Summary

“Undisclosed Conditions” really beds in its core characters in a strong follow-up.

This recap of Nurses season 1, episode 2, “Undisclosed Conditions”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.


If the premiere was an introduction to the characters of Nurses, then “Undisclosed Conditions” is very much the chance to get to know them – in particular, what they’re hiding. As I said in my recap of “Incoming”, a show like this lives and dies on its characters, and here we see more of each of them and get to know what drives them a bit more. It’s an effective episode of television and only cements the idea that this show has real promise as a fresh-feeling medical drama.

Wolf, for instance, shoulders a lot of the focus here, in contrast to his kind of aimless and slapstick-y debut. Here he’s assigned a patient who has more or less given up hope for life-saving treatment for a chronic illness, something that he can relate to since he had leukaemia as a kid. But that isn’t the true revelation, really – more pressing is that he continues to pop illegal pills to stave off the cancer’s return. And yet, he’s still selfless and concerned for others. It’s a bit of a cliché, but Nurses makes it work.

Speaking of clichés, the sports star who radically changes their career path is another, but Keon’s backstory is a little more interesting given he moved away from football because of guilt. He gave a rival player a paralyzing injury during a game and realized his life could be better spent helping people rather than hurting them, inadvertently or otherwise. It’s another instance of Nurses taking a well-worn idea and then just spinning it enough to be interesting again. Most of the show works on the same basis.

You’ll recall, though, that the hook is seeing the more mundane and menial side of nursing, the clearing up of spillages and other thankless duties you don’t usually see on TV, which is put across mainly through the clueless Nazneen in “Undisclosed Conditions”. This isn’t just a case of a privileged person learning how to be a responsible adult, though, but a reminder that a huge part of caring for someone is making them feel looked after. The heroic life-saving operations aren’t enough. Someone has to be there to clean up their sick and give out bed baths. It isn’t glamorous, but someone has to do it – the nurses. Sinead’s ability to put this across but also be understanding helped to round out her character too.

But the big revelation of Nurses episode 2 came courtesy of Grace, who you’ll recall also got the biggest bombshell of the premiere when it was revealed she was sleeping with a married man. But the reason for her departure from a previous, much more glamorous position in an OR is more impactful: An incident of so-called negligence was caused by her respected boss raping her during surgery. Not as glamorous as first thought, then, and what’s worse is that she knows she can’t do anything about it. She’s resigned to living with that, which is a painfully common truth for many women who fall victim to powerful men. Nurses is striving for a degree of honesty in many respects, including the profession of nursing in general, but its truths obviously run much deeper than that.


Thanks for reading our recap of Nurses season 1, episode 2, “Undisclosed Conditions”. For more recaps, reviews, and original features covering the world of entertainment, why not follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page?

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