House: No More Mr. Nice Guy

FOX, Mondays at 9:00PM

Genre: Drama

Conceit: Who Needs Bedside Manners?

Huh.  Well that was something, eh?  Before we get into the nitty gritty of the episode, lets talk about the strong dynamic shift in this show.  For a solid 3.5 seasons, House was above everyone.  He never needed anyone.  Never tried to.  It was only in brief moments that he showed even the slightest bit of vulnerability.  And even then, it was only to one person per episode.  But tonight, House played with everyone on an even playing field.  He went bowling with Chase…by choice.  They actually talked and House was struck by something Chase said.  In what was a rather hilarious, House and Amber set up visitation times with Wilson, who played the neutral “child” to a “T”.  Cudday even got to play Solomon to House and Amber’s dispute, and House respected it (though not without a particularly funny insult).  

The show started off on a rather odd note.  For some reason, the camera kept switching from 3rd person to House’s 1st person.  I had this fear that the show was going to be completely done in 1st person, but three minutes in, it stopped.  Which made me wonder why they did it in the first place.  The patient of the week, a generally nice guy who may be nice because he’s sick, really wasn’t the star of the episode.  In fact, it was the possibility that House had syphilis and that the disease was what accounted for his less than pleasant demeanor.  Moreover was the deeper question: if the clap causes his demeanor, but the demeanor makes him the doctor he is, do we cure the disease?  The debate was cut short when House revealed to Wilson (who revealed to Amber who revealed to Kutner) that he did the old bait and switch.  This was rather predicable.  In fact, this was done before, when House was trying to cure a patient and made it seem like he was sick.  But while that served a higher purpose, this didn’t.  That normally wouldn’t matter, except there didn’t seem to be ANY purpose for this at all.  For all the back and forth, it didn’t do anything.  And that just took the air completely out of the episode.  It kept building and building, and that payoff was just too much of a let down.

One of the highlights were extended scenes with Cameron, Chase, and Foreman.  Since Christmas found old meeting knew, I’ve been hoping that we’d see more of the original group.  I was glad to see just that.  The allusion that House slept with Cameron was a bit unsettling though.  It was also good to see Foreman put in his place by the new trio, only to have House remind him that he’s still on his side (kinda).  But the problem with putting the old trio next to the new trio is the latter fails in the presence of the former.  Taub just did nothing the entire episode.  13 (31 cause she works both ways) is the exact character as Cameron.  The only person who had a good episode was Kutner.  To the surprise of all.

Final Grade: B


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