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October 10, 2015

'House' Season 7, Episode 15 Recap

by Danny Gallagher, posted Mar 8th 2011 5:45AM
Hugh Laurie and Lisa Edelstein from ['House' - "Bombshells"]

'House' hasn't been the show that everyone has been looking forward to seeing at the end of a hard day. It's not something that most people stare at the office wall clock praying that the minutes go by so they can learn what interesting or scary disease someone has contracted and how, when, or where it will kill them.

Someone out there is still watching it though, other than contractually obligated TV critics. It's not burning up the charts, but it handily scores the top spots vs. its competition in that all-important age 18-49 demographic. Could it be that TV fans have just been hanging on through all this viscerally painful viewing to see how their favorite medical detective (well, only if you don't count 'Quincy' and Dick Van Dyke's character on 'Diagnosis: Murder' in a very distant third) is doing in his difficult time of unending happiness?

Last night, they got their answer. The moment we all saw coming when Cuddy and House finally hooked up way back at the end of last season came when we didn't see it coming.

A breakup between the two love-struck physicians was inevitable since Cuddy is a level-headed single mother who can be her own rock without House, and House is basically a giant kid with a gland problem. He was bound to say the wrong thing, do the wrong whatever, or pull a prank so unworthy of Cuddy's future affection that it would take a nuclear holocaust to bring the two back together. Maybe.

The execution was really the biggest surprise to the moment we all thought we could see coming. Cuddy comes down with some mysterious growth and of course, House immediately thinks it's fatal even before they do the ultrasound. That's because he spends the first chunk of the show denying it up and down so he won't have to deal with the hand-holding comforting and sappy reassuring that he hates even having to watch his patients go through.

During this classic case of denial, we get to watch Cuddy's subconscious play "Pictionary" with her situation by drawing up all sorts of TV- and movie-inspired dreams from a hokey "Leave it to Beaver" rip-off with House playing a weird mix of Barbara Billingsley and Hugh Beaumont to an obvious "Two and a Half Men" live action comedy with House as a slightly less cocky Charlie Sheen. The timing on the airing of that last one could not have been more perfect.

Character dreams are a huge television convention, an easy way for the writer to convey whatever the character is feeling without using actual dialogue or scenes in the context of a story that make logical sense. Here, they felt more organic even when they were being very tongue-in-cheek. They didn't come right out and tell you what Cuddy was thinking or even worried about. They actually made you think about it until the answer came flying out of her in the climatic final scene. Plus, anything that references 'The Evil Dead' gets a big thumbs up from me, even if undead and decaying zombies that can run and fight as well as a Romanian gymnast still send me into a fanboy rant.

And here's the biggest shocker of them all: Taub was the good cop. He was actually placed in a situation where you not only felt sorry for him, but you actually rooted for him to do the right thing. He was paired off with the patient of the week -- a disturbed high school kid in a deep depression that went pretty deep for a kid who may or may not have been cutting himself to feel alive. The kid's story actually got pretty dark, even for a show that treats bloody urine and cystic tumors as an everyday plot point. Taub even seemed to have some genuine affection and concern for someone other than himself or his latest conquest. It was so good, and so worthy of my time that I actually hope the plot carries through to the next episode.

Of course, the big bombshell of the night was Cuddy's eventual break-up with House over something that, frankly, I had forgotten about for almost a year. House's inability to be comfortable, or even show the affection that Cuddy needed in her darkest hour, drove him back to his old partner, Dr. Vicodin, and just when we thought that House had grown up and faced pain that we all will eventually have to deal with in some form or another, it turns out he was really just resting himself on another cane.

The moment felt genuine, surprising and actually human, for once this season. I can't believe I'm about to write this but I'm actually looking forward to the season finale, and not because it will be the last 'House' episode that I'll have to watch for at least the next nine months.

'House' airs Mondays, 8PM ET on FOX.

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Miss Understood

I have enjoyed a break from the show's normal routine and there are many fans, as evidenced by House's ratings, who LOVE the Huddy storyline. People are so afraid to allow the characters on these type shows to have some wiggle room to grow and move into other 'areas'. The season did start off a bit awkward, but don't you really think it should have? Two lead characters finally affirmed their feelings for one another and the remainder of the season offered a window for the viewers to watch them 'work out the kinks' so to speak. I hate that the writers didn't move forward with the two as a couple. Cuddy is portrayed as a fantastic matriarch who can't seem to get passed her own issues to help anyone else. The 'House' character has gone exceedingly above and out of his way to please her. While the relationship seemed very one-sided, I'm glad to see that the writers explored their relationship; like many other fans of the show I'm sad to see the break up.
p.s. Vicodin/ hydrocodone has a euphoric effect, and it blocks out physical pain as well as some pain that is mental...this is why House can't let it go. He seems to think he's unworthy of true happiness so he gets his joy from a bottle of pills.

March 12 2011 at 2:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Eludium Q36

I really, really wish "House" would go back to its original winning formula centered around the Patient Mystery of the Week. All this other staff-loving-staff idiocy is just so much distraction, because I FF through all that nonsense, I watch an hour episode in 20-mins ! Frankly, I'm not sure why I even bother with that anymore. But if he jumps off the ledge next week, that'll be interesting -- oh, but wait, that'll be the final scene to hook us to the next and hopefully final season, ugh.

March 08 2011 at 1:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This show has "jumped the shark." I am soooooooooooo glad I stop watching two season ago.

March 08 2011 at 1:34 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to EuropaE's comment

Then why are you commenting on a review of a show you stopped watching 2 years ago?

March 08 2011 at 8:15 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Tab Morte

You are wrong. Vicodin is a sedative and just like alcohol or any other drug, it alters a persons state and thinking. MANY people are addicted to Vicodin and utilize it as a means to escape their every day woos.

March 08 2011 at 12:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Tab Morte's comment

If Vicodine alters the brain, a la crystal meth, how was House able to diagnose all those patients correctly during the first 5 seasons? My understanding of Vicodine is that it is a painkiller and people get addicted to them bec. of imaginary physical pain they thought they had, e.g. House's leg.

March 08 2011 at 6:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Correct me if I'm wrong but Vicodin is not crystal meth, it doesn't numb mental anguish, just physical pain. So why was House taking it to numb his brain to the thoughts Cuddy might die? The whole thing was just a cheap way for House to fall off the wagon again.

March 08 2011 at 7:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to hollandcl's comment

because it makes you high

March 08 2011 at 10:47 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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