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Merritt Weaver As Zoe On Nurse Jackie

If you haven't figured it out yet, I'm a huge fan of Showtime and their amazing line-up of original and edgy series.  One of my many favorites is "Nurse Jackie" which is currently ending it's second season.

I adore the show for a number of reasons including the fact I'm a huge Edie Falco fan from way back.

(Image of Edie Falco as Nurse Jackie and Merritt Weaver as Zoey on "Nurse Jackie" on Showtime - Courtesy of Showtime - All Rights Reserved)

I also worked part time in a medium-sized Catholic owned hospital as a teen back in St. Louis which gives me a good point of reference for the quirky series.

I can totally relate to Nurse Jackie's role along with her side-kick, student nurse Zoey Barkow, from my days working as a nurse's assistant.

My job required me to do everything from sling oatmeal onto patient breakfast trays to helping discretely transport bodies to the basement morgue.  This meant working closely with the nursing staff.

During my close to three years of working at the hospital I met characters very similar to Nurse Jackie and Zoey. 

In one case there was the handsome and popular male nurse who was discovered dipping into the patient drug trays, just like Jackie.

In another case, a student nurse much like Zoey was caught frolicking with a young male doctor in an empty patient room during the middle of a slow shift.   At the time it was business as usual for most of the hospital staff, but definitely an eye opener for a naive teen like me.

(Image of Edie Falco as Nurse Jackie and Merritt Weaver as Zoey on "Nurse Jackie" on Showtime - Courtesy of Showtime - All Rights Reserved)

Merritt Weaver's adorable Zoey reminds me of that student nurse (who got fired) from those St. Louis. She's so adorable and quirky I want to reach through the flat screen in my family room and pinch her cheeks or give her a hug.

From her kitten covered pastel smocks and her old fashioned hair scrunchies to her facial and body ticks Merritt captures the nativity and sweetness of Zoey to perfection.  She makes me laugh, even when she's probably not trying to be humorous.

I instantly felt sorry for how overwhelmed and panic stricken she was when thrown in the hospital's ER fray.  Although not all nurses might agree with my assessment, in many respects the show does a good job or portraying the inner workings of some hospital settings.

(Image of Merritt Weaver as Zoey on "Nurse Jackie" on Showtime - Courtesy of Showtime - All Rights Reserved)

I love how Season Two of Nurse Jacking has allowed the viewers to watch Merritt's character of Zoey grow up and become more savvy about her surroundings.  Not only has she bonded with Nurse Jackie, she's learned how to manipulate the various doctors and other nurses to get what she needs for her patients.

Merritt has said in interviews about her role of Zoey "I have no idea academically how it works or technically if she is a student nurse, but the first season was a lot more, for her, about being new, the bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, enthusiastic newbie. And some time has gone by, and she gets to spread her wings a little and she's a little more comfortable, takes on a little more responsibility, that kind of stuff."

During the first season of Nurse Jackie the bewildered Zoey was just trying to survive on a daily basis.

In Season Two a lot of her personality emerges and her scenes with the mentally disturbed patient who thought he was God was truly inspired.   The fans also get to get a glimpse into her personal life as she struggles with a possible accidental pregnancy and the cultivation of a new male love relationship.

(Image of Merritt Weaver as Zoey on "Nurse Jackie" on Showtime - Courtesy of Showtime - All Rights Reserved)

Edie Falco is amazing as Nurse Jackie.  Would you expect anything else from this spectacularly talented actress?  Of course not.  However, the supporting cast on the show is equally amazing and Merritt as Zoey is a bright shining star.

Luckily for all of us die-hard Nurse Jackie fans, the series was just picked up for a third season.  I can't wait to see how Zoey continues to evolve through her training until she becomes a full-fledged nurse like Jackie.

What would we do without Zoey for some much needed comic relief during some of the more tragic and heart stopping moments on the show?  Exactly my point.

(Image of Merritt Weaver as Zoey on "Nurse Jackie" on Showtime - Courtesy of Showtime - All Rights Reserved)

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