In “As the Saints Go”, the action takes place during the course of Akalitus’ precious statues being removed from the hospital chapel. However, it is “The Very Thought of You”, the song ending the episode, that has more bearing on the lives of the show’s characters this time around.
Jackie’s thoughts are on Kevin and how she can continue to hide her drug dependence from him. Her deviousness and attention to detail are of major importance in keeping her deception going. At home, she clears the history of her Internet search for oxycodone, replacing it with those Kevin will find acceptable and believable: Al-Anon and rehab.
The nursing staff’s thoughts are on the new temp, Kelly Slater, who charms his way into their hearts with tales of his nursing feats around the world. His boldness rankles Jackie. In the course of an hour, he has taken liberties with her authority in the emergency room and has parked himself in her chair. In the end, he attempts to worm his way into her good graces but she’s having none of it.
Eddie’s thoughts are on Tunie, whom he plans to ask out on a date to the Museum of Natural History. He makes no attempt to hide this from Jackie, but seems almost sheepish as he admits it to her. She appears to take this in stride but later grows morose and melancholy and asks him to rethink his plans.
Zoey’s thoughts are on her romantic relationship with Lenny when her attractive female patient writes down her phone number, asking Zoey to pass it along him. O’Hara tells Zoey to tear it up but she decides otherwise. During lunch, Zoey gives the woman’s number to Lenny, who proceeds to wipe his beard with it and toss it aside. The small smile on Zoey’s face is a sure sign Lenny has made her day.
In the end, Jackie watches as Akalitus says a sad goodbye to her statues, which are being loaded into a moving van. The doors to the van close and we are plunged into darkness until the scene changes. Jackie sits on the stoop outside her house, head in hands, staring into space with the look of someone whose whole world is crumbling around her. Through the window, Kevin, the children and Tunie are laughing and chattering away, blissfully unaware of Jackie’s continuing downward spiral.
As smart and cagey as Jackie is, you get the feeling that something wicked is going to pounce on her every time she turns a corner. The drugs aren’t doing her any good and either are her deceptions. Yet you find yourself hoping she can keep her secret and continue on the way she’s going. That is the power of the writing and this troubled yet charismatic character.
Nurse Jackie airs Monday nights at 10 PM ET on SHOWTIME.