“House” returned to its normal Monday night time slot this week after being absent for a week due to the decision of the fine folks at Fox to show the World Series instead. (Boo!) Who wants to watch baseball when there are new House-isms to be heard?
Going Where no House Should Ever Go
With the return of the series Monday came the return of the Dr. Gregory House that fans have come to know and love. The first couple of episodes of the season gave cause for concern as Dr. House and Dr. Cuddy entered into a romantic relationship. Other shows before “House” have lost their steam when the main characters finally hooked up. Think “Moonlighting” and “Who’s the Boss?”
The difference, of course, is that while the main characters of “Moonlighting” and “Who’s the Boss?” had apparent connections, House and Cuddy do not. Sure, there is sexual tension between House and Cuddy but it isn’t the kind that leads to romantic chemistry. Rather than there being electricity between them, what exists between them is more like static. So, if those other shows couldn’t continue when the characters had a natural chemistry, how could “House” hope to last?
The show was beginning to venture into showing us a soft underbelly of House that did not really fit the character. House’s soft underbelly goes as far as the good doctor going out for a night of karaoke with Doctors Foreman and Chase, him sharing a drink and a cigar with patient’s husband, or lamenting his failure to save a patient. Even in those moments, he was not sappy. But the beginning of this season had him leaning in that direction.
Fortunately, the writers opened the door this week for the real Dr. Gregory House to return and they did it in a brilliant way. House ultimately had to decide what was more important to him – his relationship with Cuddy or his patient’s life. And true to form, House chose his patient. The moment of truth came in a conversation that House had with his best friend and colleague, Dr. James Wilson.
The Defining Conversation
House: I have a problem. A medical problem which could become…. I have lied to Cuddy 10,000 times. How do you think she’d feel about 10,001?
Wilson: I think you probably already know the answer.
House: It doesn’t make any sense.
Wilson: You don’t understand why a woman might be upset because her boyfriend lied to her?
House: I wouldn’t be lying as her boyfriend. I’d be lying as her employee.
Wilson: That’s not how relationships work.
House: My patient is gonna die.
Wilson: Does a lie guarantee he’ll live?
Wilson: You have two choices: To be honest and face the medical consequences or lie and face the personal consequences.
Is House Really Back?
House chose the latter and the show ended with Cuddy discovering that House resorted to underhandedness to save the life of his patient and that, in the process, he lied to her. It will be interesting to see where the relationship goes from this point. Will Cuddy be able to keep her professional relationship with House separate from her personal relationship with him or will she take this professional betrayal personally?
“House” airs on Fox on Mondays at 8 pm ET.