Greetings, InHouse fans! We hope you had a glorious week. We’re enjoying the thaw here in the Northeast and hope the warmer weather lasts long enough so we can see the grass in our yard again real soon.
And now on with the show. You might be interested to know that the star of the “You Must Remember This” update is not a House regular but one of this episode’s gorgeous guest cast members. We’ll talk more about that in just a little bit. For now, let’s take a look inside the Dark Room.
We begin with a few pics of the exterior of a house on a location shoot. The cameras roll as a teenage girl is hit by a car backing out of a driveway. As it turns out, this is one of the Patient of the Week’s flashbacks. Next we’re in the operating room shoot. Is that Jesse Spencer behind the surgical mask? It definitely is. We are then treated to some behind the scenes shots in Wilson’s kitchen, which feature Hugh Laurie, Robert Sean Leonard, and our sublimely fluffy guest star…Rocky the cat, who we’ll get to know better in the Media Room. After some diagnostic room shots, with Patrick Price standing in for Hugh Laurie, and a few pics of Omar Epps and Peter Jacobson playing video games in Foreman’s living room, it’s off to the Media Room.
A real treat is in store for us this time. We get to go on the set with Rocky the cat. Tyler Patton, the property master and our host for this segment, explains that when an animal has to be brought on the set it becomes his responsibility as prop master to arrange this. He doesn’t have to procure the animal but he does have to call a qualified animal wrangler so they might bring the animal.
“There’s not really any difficulty getting the animal to the set,” he says. “It’s that when it arrives you have to take some precautions. A sudden noise or a flash of a light or camera could possibly get the animal upset and make it bolt in a certain direction, into people or equipment. It could be dangerous”.
“We’ve had animals on the show more than you would think for a medical show. We’ve had a pig because we needed to filter blood through his liver. We had chickens, dogs, cats, rats, mice”.
Patton got Rocky from Boone’s Animals of Hollywood. Boone’s Animals were also the animal wranglers for the Stuart Little movies, which means “You Must Remember This” constitutes a reunion of sorts. Patton worked on Stuart Little, as did Rocky and Hugh Laurie, who played Mr. Little. Ah, but all you Hugh Laurie experts knew that, didn’t you?
Rocky is a gorgeous white silver-shaded Persian, who is shown running around the set of Wilson’s apartment. Off a visual of Laurie petting Rocky, Tyler says they were very excited to see how the cat would respond to Laurie when they were reunited on set.
“Rocky is a really sweet, great, great cat”, Rocky’s trainer, Claire Pierce says. She then goes on to explain that the most difficult part of Rocky’s day will be learning to hide under a cardboard box on Wilson’s kitchen counter (another nice shot of Laurie and the cat here) and staying calm through the whole thing. This is what they’ve been practicing for the last couple of days.
“With cats,” Pierce says, “you really have to find out what motivates them and chicken is a really good motivator for cats. And you do have to build a relationship with them. They have to trust you because being on set is often a crazy environment. So they have to be comfortable. You just have to show them what they need to do and they’ll do it for you”. At this point Rocky is placed under the box on the counter as Claire feeds him chicken bits through an opening on the side. Rocky doesn’t fuss at all.
In the Writers Room, we meet Kath Lingenfelter, the writer of the episode, who explains how she came up with the ailment for the Patient of the Week: “About two years ago, I was reading an article about a woman diagnosed with hyperthinesia (extreme autobiographical memory), and I was really taken with the notion of what life would be like if you remembered everything, every single moment. Most people would assume that it’s this great gift and, in fact, for her it’s been this terrible curse. Every memory that she relives, she relives as if it were the original moment. So, yes, she can revisit her happiest times but also she’s plagued with her worst memories”.
Lingenfelter chose to explore the relationship between the Patient of the Week Nadia and her sister Elena. “This is sort of an exaggeration of relationships with sisters where you will do anything for each other but you usually don’t let anything go. But in times of crisis and in times of need the wonderful thing about family is you show up. So when Masters goes and asks Elena for her kidney to save her sister’s life, she barely hesitates. She says ‘yes’, even though they’re estranged”.
In the end, when Nadia sacrifices this thing that makes her unique, she does it to have a relationship with her sister, because she finds out she doesn’t have long to live.
This is Lingenfelter’s first season writing for the show. “Long time viewer, first time writer”, she says with a big smile. Her favorite thing about House has always been the House/Wilson relationship. In putting this episode together she says she definitely wanted to write a House/Wilson B-story.
“We now have this reversal where for the first time House is in a stable relationship. He’s got a woman and Wilson is the one who’s alone. There’s a level of guilt that House feels because of that. That puts House ill at ease. But also as a friend he wants to see his friend happy”.
“House is always looking for something to get into”, Lingenfelter continues. “I think his senses are highly attuned to Wilson. So he immediately picks up on [that] something is up with Wilson”.
Lingenfelter then offers a lovely anecdote regarding Laurie. “Rocky, the cat used in the episode, was the action cat used in [the film] Stuart Little, which also starred Hugh Laurie. So that was a reunion between cat and actor. Maybe I’m just reading into it but when Hugh had his scenes with Rocky, we actually had trouble with Hugh’s mic because the cat was purring so loudly. I’d like to think that the cat remembered Hugh and was purring so loudly we had to reshoot some of [Hugh’s] lines because you couldn’t hear him over the purring”.
Before we leave the Writers Room, Lingenfelter has one more fun fact about the shoot. “Robert Sean Leonard was very self-conscious about his sneeze acting. He didn’t feel like his sneezes came across and was running around the set going, ‘I need something to help me sneeze’. All the makeup women were on their phones searching for what can make you sneeze”.
Pepper was what Leonard requested to help the process along. He then snorted it up, which didn’t help him sneeze but burned the inside of his nose and sinuses. Between takes he was in a great deal of distress. “He was so miserable”, Lingenfelter says with a laugh. “But I think his sneeze acting was great. I don’t know why he was worried about it. He suffers for his art”.
In the Music Room are iTunes links to three songs associated with the episode. “Bless Our Tiny Hearts” by Adrian Crowley was the inspiration for the end song. “Felicia” by The Constellations, and “How To Fight Loneliness” by Wilco were songs used in the episode.
Finally, in the Houseisms section, the writers picked four of their favorite lines from the episode. Our favorite is “You two were so busy being impressively outside the box you missed the actual box”.
Join us next week for a look at InHouse’s update on the “Two Stories” episode.
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