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I couldn't believe there wasn't a group for House!! I don't know if many of you watch this show, but this group is for those who do!


House Rundown: Episode 9, "Games"

Posted By Entertainment on Nov 28, 2007 at 9:36AM

Every House episode is really just a series of games House plays — with Cuddy, with Foreman, with his patients' lives — but this week's episode took things one step further. For the final challenge before picking his new team, House set the final four candidates loose on an aging punk rocker with symptoms that were either drug abuse or something more. In the end, he did actually buckle down and choose a team, but of course I'm not going to reveal the names up here. For that you'll have to

This episode was all about being right — the risks you take (or don't), the consequences, the reasons it might be OK to be wrong sometimes. We've seen in other episodes how much Amber thrives on being right — you don't get the nickname Cutthroat B*tch for nothing — but this episode made it clear that she not only requires perfection of herself but also asks for it in others. She couldn't deal with the rock star who didn't care about things; she thought he was wasting his life, and for whatever reason, being anything less than 100 percent right would be a waste of hers. But that was her downfall: Striving to be right all the time is the enemy of what House does. His process requires numerous guesses and tests and trials, and he's always wrong at least once, but he uses those wrong answers to find the right one. Amber's mistakes, and her unwillingness to admit them and move on, got her cut from the team.

That leaves Taub, Kutner, and Thirteen as House's new staff. Their hiring — Thirteen's in particular — came from yet another of House's games with Cuddy. She recommended candidates to him because she thought he'd do the opposite; he hired two men, knowing she'd be angry there wasn't a woman in the mix. He ended up with three out of the final four — not the 3.5 he'd hoped for, but close enough. I wonder how they'll be able to work together now that they're not competing anymore.

Meanwhile, Wilson actually had a subplot! And it fit quite nicely into the overall theme of the episode, too: He told a patient he had six months to live, then learned three months later that the test results had been false and there was nothing wrong with the patient at all. It was pretty similar to a recent Grey's Anatomy story, right down to both patients wanting to sue the hospital for giving them their lives back, but this one worked better for me on the strength of the House/Wilson interplay. Their screaming match was a highlight for me: "Dying's easy. Living's hard." "That can't possibly be as poignant as it sounds."

Some other thoughts:

  • I loved the reminder that money's not a big deal to House, but threatening to move his parking space? That's serious stuff.
  • Chase pointed out a nice truth about the Foreman/House relationship: Foreman trying to stop the game is his role in the game.
  • House on how he knew Wilson was going to pay off his patient: "You usually keep your checkbook at home. It's your go-to excuse for why you can't lend me money."
  • Great description of Cuddy: "the face that launched a thousand long faces."

So, did the final episode play out the way you were expecting? What do you think will happen to Chase and Cameron now? And how upset are you that this was the final House till 2008?

Photos courtesy of Fox

House Rundown: Epsiode 8, "You Don't Want to Know"

Posted By Entertainment on Nov 21, 2007 at 10:57AM

Ladies and gentlemen, step right up for the greatest show on earth! There will be mystery. Intrigue. Stolen underwear. All that, and more, in another installment of House! This week's magic-themed episode featured a typically bizarre case, some "can you say that on TV?" one-liners, and the end to one of the show's best running jokes. I'm a little bummed about that last part, but I thought the rest of the episode was great, so to read the rest of my take, just

First of all: lupus? Really? I wouldn't have guessed they'd just slip the disease that's provided a running joke for years into a random episode with so little fanfare. And yet, it fit in surprisingly well with the other themes of this episode — namely, once you know, is the wonder still there?

This was another episode that tested House's tendency to disbelieve anything that can't be measured scientifically, with an ill magician performing tricks from his bed and refusing to reveal his secrets because that would spoil the surprise. As a way to get behind House's facts-only mind, I liked it better than the show's religious episodes; the best moment for me was when the patient hit House where it hurt, stealing his Vicodin and making it disappear.

Another disappearing act: Cuddy's thong, and with it, Cole. As one-liners go, I'd say the thong-stealing ranked among the show's best setups: "When she stops wearing clothes we can forget about the medical stuff. " "Skirt that tight, I can tell you got an IUD." And, my favorite:

House: "How'd you do it?"
Cole: "Prayer, mostly."

Cole should have known better, though: The worst way to play one of House's games is to get Cuddy involved. Breaking Cuddy's rules would have gotten him one step closer to a fellowship position; breaking House's rules got him kicked out of the game.

We were supposed to learn all about Thirteen in this episode, but what we got was a little less informative than I'd hoped. Would House really have drugged Thirteen (with coffee, but still) just because he saw a picture of her mother, who died young, in her wallet? Would he have even known what disease to suspect? That's House's version of magic, I suppose. Regardless, he was right; Thirteen may or may not have Huntington's disease. Interesting and revealing, sure — but I wanted to learn her name.

Some other thoughts:

  • Another great thing about the thong mission was all the physical comedy: Amber showing her thong strap; Taub trying to spill coffee on Cuddy and dousing his own lab coat instead; Amber smoking to turn on the hospital sprinklers, only to find Cuddy huddling with Taub in her dry office.
  • Do you buy that Kutner and Cole would be friends? I was a little surprised at their "man date," but l do think Kutner would be a fun babysitter.
  • House seems to be going to greater physical lengths to diagnose lately — electrocuting himself a few weeks ago, getting the patient's possibly diseased blood this time.
  • Speaking of the blood switcharoo, loved the exchange between House and Wilson about their blood types (which, honestly, nobody just casually discusses): "Universal donor. No wonder you're paying three alimonies."

So, I know some of you know who the final three candidates are (thanks to Fox's press release several weeks back), but let's pretend it's all a mystery. The story wraps up next week with House choosing his new team; if you were him, which doctors would you keep?

Photos courtesy of Fox

House Rundown: Episode 5, "Mirror Mirror"

Posted By Entertainment on Oct 31, 2007 at 9:42AM

Every so often, House will break out a theme episode where the cases and the doctors' lives intertwine. Those episodes often seem contrived, but they do have a purpose: They give us a window into the characters that we couldn't get from the typical House formula. "Mirror, Mirror" was one of those episodes, and it gave us some insight into the doc-testants still in the running for a job on House's team. To read my thoughts on the episode, just

The vehicle for this insight was the patient of the week, who was diagnosed early on with Mirror Syndrome, a condition that makes the patient mimic the person he's with — or, as Wilson pointed out, whichever person in a group he perceives to be the most dominant. Each time a doctor interacted with him, he would quickly take on their personality. As I was watching, though, I didn't think the patient revealed all that much about the characters; the revelations came more from their reactions to what the patient had to say.

Some of the discoveries weren't shocking: Amber knows people don't like her (how could she not?), Thirteen is afraid of screwing up, House thinks Thirteen is hot and Cuddy has nice breasts. Others were more interesting: Taub's kinda crushing on Amber, and Kutner is a masochist (though we learned that more from the way he gave himself a shock with the electric paddles than from anything the patient said). Oh, and there was some stuff with Never Talking Guy, otherwise known as Brennan; he wants to go back to saving lives in Third World countries but is stuck duking it out for a job with House because of his fiancee. I hope they break up, because Brennan is terribly dull. Also, no Cole this week?

There was another level of mirroring going on in the episode, as Foreman returned to work again with House, the former mentor whom everyone thought he was becoming. Thirteen, meanwhile, saw in Foreman someone who had accidentally killed a patient, just like she had — her own mirror. Has Foreman really changed? He's more compassionate than House, I suppose, but that's not saying much.

Some other thoughts:

  • I'm still not sure I get how Chase and Cameron will be used every week, but for now, I like them on the edges. Chase taking bets on who would be the next doc-testant eliminated — and then cutting a deal with House for half the profit — was hysterical.
  • Cuddy got some good lines tonight, finally, and it was good to see her and House pranking each other again. I liked the overflowing clinic better than the pill switching, though; Wilson is immature enough to switch House's painkillers for laxatives, but Cuddy?
  • In terms of one-liners, it was one of House's better nights in a while. Some favorites:
    "Just in case I need them, where exactly will Dr. Foreman be keeping my balls?"
    "Mind if we play through?"
    "Mail order. Seen the diploma. Two N's in University."

  • The revelation that House was dominant over Cuddy was about as shocking as the one that House thinks Thirteen is hot — but it meant getting to see House's funny dance at the end, so I'll take it.

Your thoughts? Too many mirror metaphors for you? Or are you glad to get a deeper glimpse into some of these new characters?

Photos courtesy of Fox

"House" Recap: Episode 3, "97 Seconds"

Posted By Entertainment on Oct 10, 2007 at 9:42AM

What a strange episode of "House" this week, huh? It was one that broke down all the normal rules of the show: There were three medical cases instead of the usual one; House took a much more dramatic step than usual in an attempt to solve one of them; and not everything worked out well in the end. To talk more about the episode, just

I suppose "House" fans who worried about the show getting stuck in a one-patient, one-diagnosis rut should take heart in last night's episode, which had a lot going on. We had House playing games with his 10 remaining fellowship candidates, splitting them up by gender ("if your sex organs dangle, you're a Confederate") and putting them on the case of a man with a chronic muscular condition that seemed to suddenly be getting worse. House himself took on a second patient, who attempted to electrocute himself by sticking a knife in a light socket, later claiming he saw magical things while unconscious. And Foreman turned up at his new hospital, working on a case suspiciously similar to the one where he killed the woman last year.

The traditional case was my favorite of the three, if only because it allowed for more antics from the job candidates — who now have nicknames and not numbers. Cutthroat Bitch's skills at playing House's game were impressive, but would she really know to go to Cameron and Chase for help?

The case with House and the knife was just bizarre. In theory, I like it when the writers explore House's psychology and spirituality, because I'd love to get inside his head more. The trouble is, the plot lines that explore these themes never seem to really teach us anything. Was House actually suicidal? Did he really think he'd see magical glimpses of the afterlife? Was it just to get attention?

The Foreman case was a little too on the nose, but it was fun to see him working with a new team (two guys and a girl, apparently the required genetic makeup for a group of diagnostic experts). He really was trying to be a kinder, gentler House. But in the end, the hard-nosed doctor in Foreman came out, and he made a risky call to try to save his patient's life. It worked out this time, but his new boss wasn't impressed with Foreman's bullishness and fired him on the spot.

A few other notable developments:

  • I thought it was interesting that House punished the boys' team for running a zillion tests while the girls had already treated the patient. "Treat first, ask questions later" is a strategy we've seen House use a lot — sometimes successfully, sometimes not.
  • That tilt-table test made me dizzy, and I was just watching it.
  • Loved the tribal council scene with House in a bandanna and bunsen burners instead of candles.
  • It was an interesting twist that the main patient — and his poor dog! — died simply because Thirteen hadn't watched him take the pills. I liked when House told her he wouldn't be lecturing her if he was going to fire her; he wouldn't bother teaching her what she did wrong if he didn't want her around.

So, what did you think? Was there too much going on? Or was it a nice departure from the typical "House" way?

Photos courtesy of Fox

"House" Rundown: Episode 2, "The Right Stuff"

Posted By Entertainment on Oct 3, 2007 at 9:33AM

As much as I loved watching House work alone on last week's "House," it was even better to see him surrounded by new potential team members to torture. I'm not sure if any of these new candidates have (ahem) the right stuff to be House's new lackeys, but it's sure going to be fun to watch them try. To talk about the episode, just

Our patient of the week: an Air Force captain who's supposed to start the astronaut training program when she starts having symptoms of synesthesia. She shows up with $50,000 in cash for House to fix her off the books so she can still go into space. This leads to a lot of sneaking around behind Cuddy's back, clever diagnostic procedures, and even elective breast augmentation surgery that would let the surgeons check her lungs without NASA finding out.

Unlike last week, House has a whole room full of eager-beaver fellowship candidates — with numbers instead of names — to do the job for him. When Cuddy gives him guff about the number of people he's interviewing, he fires a whole row; when it's time to split them into teams, he divides them by who likes the designated hitter rule. It's House at his unsentimental best, and if the (temporary?) departure of Foreman, Cameron and Chase leads to more moments like those, I'm all for it.

We got a few insights into the potential new team members, and while I — like House — don't want to get too invested yet, it does seem like a few of them will be around for a while. "Thirteen" (Olivia Wilde) is clearly House's new crush. Kal Penn's character (can we just call him Kumar?) was fired early on but got a second shot when he defiantly switched his "6" to a "9" and re-entered the competition.My favorite was the older man who isn't a doctor at all, and I'm glad he's sticking around as House's assistant; as House said at the end, it's his dream job, just not his dream title.

I loved the appearances/apparitions of Chase and Cameron, especially Wilson trying to convince House he was crazy for seeing them. But those two were there after all: Chase working in surgery, Cameron (newly blonde) working as an attending in the ER. As for House's visions of Foreman, well, those are yet to be explained.

A few other thoughts:

  • My favorite one-liner, upon House's learning that his patient was training to be an astronaut: "I discovered salt and created FM radio."
  • The job candidate I'm most on the fence about is the blonde snitch who was assigned to wash House's car, led an uprising to get everyone to quit, then came back with House's keys and drove to a car wash. How will House deal with someone who picks on the faults of others rather than standing out on her own?
  • I can't believe they set a patient on fire. Even I know not to use anything that could set off a spark in an environment with concentrated oxygen. OK, I learned that from "Grey's Anatomy" last year, but still.
  • How many times did a character say something to House about how he's the doctor who breaks all the rules?
  • Wilson, upon learning that House was seeing Cameron with blonde hair in his visions: "Why are you merging Cameron and Chase? You should find out before the next time you see her, when she'll be black."
  • I'm still not sure I understand the ending. House told the patient he called the NASA doctors, but then he told Cameron it wasn't true and he just needed to shut off "some leaky faucets." Whose dream was House trying to crush?

Your thoughts? Loving any of the new doctors so far? Think the vision of Foreman was real?

Photos courtesy of Fox

"House" Episode 1: "Alone"

Posted By Entertainment on Sep 26, 2007 at 9:28AM

What's a "House" without any team to torture? Why, if Tuesday's season premiere is any indication, he's the same cranky doctor as always. To check out my thoughts on the fourth-season premiere and share your own, just

With Chase, Cameron and Foreman all gone, House started off the episode by recruiting a janitor to help him solve the case of a woman who was crushed by a building and developed a mysterious illness on top of that. In no time, House went from describing medical cases to him in condescending terms ("so you have a favorite buffer...") to slapping a white coat on him and calling him Dr. Buffer. I'm a sucker for a good in-joke, and Dr. Buffer was good for that. "Or maybe lupus?" "It's never lupus." Heh. I'm glad that gag didn't last the whole episode, but it was a good setup for things to come.

Cuddy spent the episode trying to get House to admit he needed a new team to help him kick ideas around. But as negotiating tactics go, banning House from discussing cases with other people seemed a little pointless — I mean, if his bouncing ideas off every random doctor and nurse would save a life, shouldn't she be all for it? Still, though, it moved the plot forward enough and set up that great scene at the end, with House warning the prospective fellowship candidates that they have no idea what torture they were in for.

The antics between House and Wilson really stole the show for me in this episode. They have such great chemistry, and while I haven't always found their friendship believable, I'm starting to understand that they thrive on each other's weird energy. I love that Wilson would go through the trouble of making ransom notes after kidnapping the guitar (even if it was Cuddy's doing, I can't see her cutting out all those little magazine letters). And House kidnapping Wilson's patient? Genius, and typically unethical, revenge — especially because it shows that House really does equate that guitar with a human life, at this point.

Some other thoughts:

  • I loved the anguish in Wilson's voice when he realized House was monkeying with his TiVo.
  • We'll soon know if that one ER doctor who came up with new theories for House winds up being one of the fellowship candidates, but if she does, I'm already fearing for her. "I just care about people"? I sense another Cameron situation coming on.
  • I really did not see the twist coming with the case of mistaken identity, but I totally should have. Otherwise, why even introduce the other woman's husband?
  • My favorite House line of the night, after Cuddy accuses him of doing absolutely nothing since the team left: "In what twisted universe does mastering Eddie Van Halen’s two-handed arpeggio technique count as absolutely nothing?"

Your thoughts? Do you miss the team? Are you ready for House to start interviewing fresh meat?

Photos courtesy of Fox

A Quick Chat with Omar Epps

Posted By Entertainment on Aug 2, 2007 at 4:30AM

I already told you about all the season four scoop the "House" crew spilled at the TCA press tour. But Omar Epps, who plays Dr. Eric Foreman, had some goodies of his own in store for me when I chatted with him after the show's panel discussion. Here's what he had to say:

How has Foreman changed from who he was in the first season to someone who could say no to House?
He's sort of evolved. I think, season one, he kind of always had that in the background, but it was his first year on the job and you kind of don't want to ruffle any feathers. But I think working so closely and sort of having some of the same personality quirks that House has, he's become confident enough to stand up to what he disagrees with in House. In this coming season, it will be interesting to see how that all sort of comes full circle, because he's had a chance to be out on his own in the real world and actually has a lot more of the House qualities than he thought he had — and suffers for that.

More from Epps — including what Foreman will be up to in the fall — so

How did the case where he actually lost someone change him?
It was because he just made a mistake, and I think in the medical community, you know, there's no perfection. You're constantly striving for perfection. I just think Foreman, being the hard-ass that he is, very much about order and really stiff about having order — how could he miss something so obvious, is what it came down to. So I think that affected his personality, just wondering, is he fit for this field. Foreman has a militant sort of view toward medicine, and that was a case that was definitely going to make or break him.

Do you think it did break him?
Ultimately it will make him, but I think for the time being he is broken, because I think he had to sort of get knocked off his high horse and realize he has a lot more to learn — small things. You can always learn the big things, but the small things make up the world.

What is — or was — Foreman's role in the group?
In the old group Foreman was the rookie. Obviously immensely talented, and House saw something in him, but Foreman was sort of — no pun intended — sort of the dark horse in the sense of, he was the one that had the cavalier attitude of he doesn't have a point to prove because he was the new one and wasn't comfortable with this life yet. He was still sort of cavalier about it all. And the new team, I don't know how they're going to work it, but I can make assumptions that he would sort of be heading the new team but also being a bridge between whoever the new cast members end up being and House. Because you need that, dealing with an insane character like House.

Photo courtesy of Fox

The "House" Crew Spills the Beans on Season Four

Posted By Entertainment on Jul 24, 2007 at 4:33AM

When the "House" cast members weren't enjoying the rides at the Santa Monica Pier this week — yes, that's Hugh Laurie in a bumper car in that photo on the right — they were dishing details left and right about the upcoming fourth season of the show. The actors, along with executive producer Katie Jacobs, spent their panel at the TCA press tour dribbling out information about who's leaving, who's changing, and who's coming back to Princeton-Plainsboro. They addressed the season finale's big cliffhanger and the addition of five new doctors — among other goodies. There's great stuff here, but beware of spoilers ahead if you

  • "Everybody is back eventually," Jacobs said early in the panel. That was pretty obvious from the fact that Omar Epps, Jesse Spencer and Jennifer Morrison all were on the stage, but it was nice to have it confirmed.
  • In the first episode, House will be trying to solve cases by himself. Cuddy will insist that House hire a new team, and eventually he relents and calls the 40 people whose resumes have piled up on his desk. Jacobs jokingly called it the show's version of "Survivor" and said House will give them running bibs and refer to them only by number — which explains why Olivia Wilde's character is named Thirteen.
  • The supporting cast found out they'd all be leaving when the producers asked to talk to them over lunch one day. It was "a little bit like being called into the principal's office," Morrisson recalled.
  • When the new season begins, Chase will be working at a hospital in Arizona, and Cameron will be with him. Foreman, meanwhile, will be running his own diagnostic department at Mercy Hospital.
  • "I don't know if things ever will be the same," Spencer said, "because I'm going to be moving into a different area, and Jen is as well. The team is going to be different. And that's going to change the energy and the chemistry of the entire show. It kind of feels like we've got a new show."
  • Laurie said the first three scripts of the season "are not only three of the best 'House' scripts I've ever read, they're three of the best scripts I've ever read."
  • The five new actors each have deals that could potentially turn them into series regulars. They make their first appearance in the second episode of the season, and Jacobs threw out a few more details about some of them: Kal Penn will play a young doctor who has a cool procedure but doesn't necessarily know all the steps to getting there; Peter Jacobson's character is a plastic surgeon who's leaving plastics for a chance to work with House.
  • Jacobs somewhat jokingly said she "may commit to a beautiful make-out scene for Cuddy."
  • The post-Super Bowl episode will be a two-parter, and Jacobs said she doesn't think the show will do "anything wacky" to grab ratings.

So? Discuss!


Five New Doctors are in the "House"

Posted By Entertainment on Jul 18, 2007 at 4:14PM

Remember how I told you a while back that "House" could be getting a quartet of new underlings? Make that a quintet. Five new doctors will join the Princeton-Plainsboro staff in the fall — though it's not been revealed how long they'll each be sticking around.

Headlining the new additions are Olivia Wilde of "The OC" and "The Black Donnellys" and Kal Penn of Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle and The Namesake. Wilde is set to play a doctor named Thirteen — a name I assume must have been chosen just because it would rankle House so much. Penn and the three other new additions — Peter Jacobson (Kenny from "The Starter Wife"), Edi Gathegi ("Lincoln Heights") and Anne Dudek ("Big Day") — are expected to play candidates for a fellowship with House.

It should be interesting to watch House react to a new pretty young thing, but I do wonder how long it will be before Chase, Foreman and Cameron return. E! says the newbies will be around for at least eight episodes, while Fox says the the number is undetermined. Will this make for a "House" that's too crowded?

Wilde and Penn photo Source
Hugh Laurie photo courtesy of Fox

"House" to Get New Underlings?

Posted By Entertainment on Jun 21, 2007 at 8:30AM

One of the biggest questions for "House" following its season finale was which — if any — of House's helpers would be returning to the show. The latest news on that front comes from TV Guide's Michael Ausiello, who reported this week that the search is on for four new junior doctors (two guys, two girls) to be House's assistants come fall.

But Ausiello also says that Jesse Spencer, Omar Epps and Jennifer Morrison are all expected to return, which would add up to a hospital so crowded it would rival "Grey's Anatomy."

Here's my theory: Cuddy will hire four new doctors for House to train, but they'll all hate his abrasive attitude and leave one by one, forcing him to un-fire Chase and convince Cameron and Foreman to reconsider their resignations. Maybe one of the new four will stay on for good — one of the women, perhaps, for the sake of sexual tension.

"House" fans, what's your take?

Photo courtesy of Fox