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Reichenbach Falls: A Reflection on the House, M.D. Series Finale “Everybody Dies”

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At the end of the series finale of House, M.D. “Everybody Dies,” Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie) is presumed dead. Only Princeton Plainsboro Dean of Medicine Foreman (Omar Epps) and House’s dying best friend Dr. James Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) are aware that House has pulled a Sherlock ala Reichenbach Falls.

(Speaking of which, does anyone else think that’s become the literary device du jour this year? I can name at least two recent big movies in which the Reichenbach Falls gambit has been used this year. I won’t name them for fear of major summer blockbuster spoilage for one of them.)

House has done the one thing he’s always vowed he would never do. “I’ll sacrifice a lab rat, I’ll sacrifice a fly, I’ll sacrifice $200 on a mudder at Monmouth Park. I don’t sacrifice self,” he tells Wilson in the fourth season episode “Don’t Ever Change.” We know that House is lying in that scene, and he has indeed “sacrificed self” several times over the course of seven seasons. But in “Everybody Dies,” he makes the ultimate sacrifice—his life. 

Faced with going back to prison after a foolish prank gone bad in the penultimate episode, House knows that if he returns to jail, Wilson will live out the final months of his life alone, and worrying about his incarcerated friend. For House, it must feel like the ultimate betrayal of someone who means so very much to him.

Finding himself trapped in an abandoned, burning building, contemplating his life and future, he is in purgatory, debating with himself the merit of living another day, or ending it all: the pain, the misery, the self-doubt, the waste and loss of love, and his humanity. His allies and tormenters, those whose lives he has touched and those whom he has touched come to him in drug-induced visions, urging him to not give in to despair, or egging him not to take the coward’s way out.

It is Cameron, the idealistic, naive young fellow, never shying away from telling House the unvarnished truth who finally gets to him, forcing him out of his self-pitying funk. He can make a difference; he can change and “be there” for Wilson without fading into oblivion. But how? How does he escape from the inevitable? How can he be there for Wilson if he’s in prison?

This is the puzzle, and to solve it, House must conjure the ultimate scam—something at which he is, of course, supremely gifted. It’s a brilliant solution, worthy of House—and Holmes—and a perfect final homage to Conan-Doyle’s fictional detective. It fools everyone, including Wilson, whose attempt at kind words for the dearly-departed House ring hollow in the face of House’s ultimate narcissism, instead turning his eulogy into a dawning realization about what an irredeemable  ass his “friend” House truly is.

That is, until he receives the untimely timely text that only says “Shut up, Wilson.” And then, he knows the truth: “everybody lies.”

And there they are at the end, the two of them, together, riding off into Wilson’s sunset astride a matched set of motorbikes to the play-off of “Enjoy Yourself,” interpreted so differently than it had been at the end of season five. It is into a no-less bleak future that they ride, particularly for Wilson, who only has a few months to live, but the ending is, in its own way, upbeat and absolutely perfect.

But the ending asks the inevitable question: “now what?” What are the possibilities? And that is the question with which I leave you, dear readers. What happens after the final credits roll, as the months (and perhaps years) go on? Does House have a altered destiny in “death?” Will he rise like a phoenix (or Sherlock Holmes) out of the ashes to fight another fight? (After all, Holmes has had a very active life post-Reichenbach through other novelists and numerous filmmakers crafting new adventures.)

Some possibilities:

  • Wilson is cured (maybe by some experimental protocol developed by House, himself).
  • After euthanizing Wilson (and Thirteen), House gives himself up to the authorities, confesses the scam and returns to prison.
  • House assumes Wilson’s name (ah, the endless possibilities of hacking…er…tweaking things a bit on the Interwebs), and starts his medical life anew.
  • House fakes amnesia and turns up just when Cuddy’s new hospital (or old one, if she re-appears at Princeton-Plainsboro believing House gone for good) just when he’s needed during a pandemic (House as the Dark Knight).

What do you all think? What happens after “everybody dies?” Let me know in the comments!

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About Barbara Barnett

Barbara Barnett is publisher and executive editor of Blogcritics, as well as a noted entertainment writer. Author of Chasing Zebras: The Unofficial Guide to House, M.D., her primary beat is primetime television. But Barbara writes on an everything from film to politics to technology to all things pop culture and spirituality. She is a contributor to the book called Spiritual Pregnancy (Llewellyn Worldwide, January 2014) and has a story in Riverdale Ave Press' new anthology of zombie romance, Still Hungry for your Love. She is hard at work on what she hopes will be her first published novel.
  • Julia Roth

    I think House becomes a drifter. Curing people who also drift- he finds a good woman. She is a waitress or head waitress . While drifting he runs into his old comrades while they vacation, volunteer or otherwise live their lives. He writes articles under Wilson’s name but never practices again. H e cures so many people that he has a following and has to keep on the down low.
    Some call him a holy man and greatly aggravate him .

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/barbara-barnett barbara barnett

    Love it, Julia :)

  • Amy

    House fakes amnesia and turns up just when Cuddy’s new hospital (or old one, if she re-appears at Princeton-Plainsboro believing House gone for good) just when he’s needed during a pandemic (House as the Dark Knight).
    Good version)
    House will find Cuddy anyway!
    Because is there are so many things and words which un-done and un-said between them!
    So I am happy that finally TPTB set House free and he can come back to woman who is love of his life- to Cuddy!

  • AreKay

    House is lost and knocks on my door to ask directions! (don’t I wish) LOL!!

  • MR

    I love it!
    Cuddy:”We were in this together,then you were gone,now this pandemic rises,the House has to come back!”

    The Dark House Rises

  • rbrown205

    House cures Wilson through the positive endorphins that come from spending those months together, and then he dies from some leftover ailment of his life (they have been hinting that he has some liver disease). Then David Shore makes up a new series based on Wilson.

  • KMC

    I’ve been reading the fanfic, and they’re hitting on almost every variant available…Wilson has a spontaneous remission, a miraculous cure, House comes up with something, Wilson decides (for Houses’s sake, for his own sake)to have treatment…then there are the ones where Wilson dies, sometimes in House’s arms, sometimes not, and either House ends his own life in dispair, makes a call to Foreman and turns himself in, or makes a call then wanders off into the sunset…and those are just the ones off the top of my head. Shore did something brilliant and something very generous…he gave the fans the option to decide for themselves what happens. The fans can decide for themselves if Wilson lives or dies, if House implodes or returns home to face the consequences or simply rides off alone into the sunset to reinvent himself. Shore left us a wide open field to play in…which is not something most creators would be willing to do.
    What do I want? I hope a cure (or permenant remission) for Wilson is found, and they decide to settle somewhere far from PPTH where they can start a life together free from as much as their past as possible (but I’d like them to let Blythe know)

  • Elisa

    I agree with both AreKay and KMC. So much fanfic has been written about “after the finale.”

    What do I want? I want Wilson to seek medical treatment, have surgery,and be cured. I want House to find a way to something that matters in his life. During S8 they seemed to be implying that House was getting burned out on diagnostic medicine.

    I want House and Wilson to live grumpily ever after.

  • Elisa

    That reminds me–I need to fake my own death to get out of a family reunion. Hey, it works for everybody else!

  • http://quarryhillcreativecenter.blogspot.com Ladybelle Fiske

    Let’s go. I would love to see what happens after… and I keep hoping for that movie!

  • http://quarryhillcreativecenter.blogspot.com Ladybelle Fiske

    To me it seems that Stacy’s view of the Housian future implies that once Wilson is gone, House will find another role (as a physicist?) for himself, and will fina a girlfriend or wife and have a child… something, much to my surprise, that he actually wants.

  • genagirl

    I think Wilson will ultimately convince House it’s all really worth it, love is real and he needs to just keep on going. It would be a fitting legacy for the only person House ever really cared about. Wilson has always only ever wanted House to find some happiness.

  • lucy

    I didn’t really love the final episode but I agree with KMC, with such an open ending, every fan can basically imagine what’s next according to their own point of view and tastes, which is nice.

    In my personal version, Wilson dies (sorry), House turns himself him and goes to prison for some months; then he starts over far from PPTH, as a diagnostician or a teacher or a researcher. He meets Cuddy again, maybe she offers him a job at her new hospital or helps him find a job somewhere else. Maybe he still informally helps Chase and his old team with particularly intricated cases.

    But I also like Barbara’s idea that House fakes amnesia and shows up in Cuddy’s hospital just when there’s a big medical crisis. This would make for a good movie. Even if I hope they don’t do a House movie at all.

    PS: I haven’t really followed this blog in the last months, because my interest in the series faded fast in S8, but thank you Barbara for the great job you did in these years.

  • KMC

    I’m sorry…I forgot to say thank you to Barbara…while I might not have always agreed with what you had to say, I always enjoyed reading your blog. I’m going to miss House…maybe it was because of what was going on in my life these past eight years, but the character and his pain and struggle always struck a chord within me. Sometimes it hit home a little too close for comfort. But it lead me to discover Hugh Laurie and Robert Sean Leonard, and I’m grateful for that…saw RSL on Broadway..which I hope to do again (met him twice..very gracious man), and am heading out with a friend next month to see HL in concert again. And now I feel I can share this…I entered the contest they held for the retrospective..do a short video about what the show meant to you…and mine was chosen! In the end, they didn’t use it..I suspect it was simply too long…but it gave me a week and a half of glorious anticipation…and I’m grateful for that. “House” was a very different show..with a VERY different main character…everyone I’ve ever talked to about it either loved it or hated it…but you couldn’t be indifferent. It will be interesting to see 10 or 20 years down the road how the show holds up..where it’s place in TV history will be.

  • Action Kate

    Hey, can we copy our predictions from the other thread? (Or was that, in fact, where you got the idea for this post? :) )

  • Citizen of the Real World

    House OD’s. There is no altruistic or heroic ending for him; he simply dies a junkie.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/barbara-barnett barbara barnett

    Thanks everyone. Yes, Action Kate, feel free to copy those responses over to this comment thread :)

  • Belle0308

    In all honesty I watched every season up until the last one because I just couldn’t handle life without Cuddy. I loved the three of them, H, W & C. It always seemed to me that House needed both of them in his life to balance each other. I did watch the finale and in my opinion I agree with those who say that he would eventually find Cuddy. I think he would have a tough time without at least one of them in his life and without Wilson, he would need someone to keep him grounded. I never cared for the way the ended them. After all of the things they had been through over the years their break up almost seemed forced. She had cared about him at his worst and I can’t believe that would change. They had found each other two times before and they would find each other again.

  • Grace

    I would like to believe that Wilson decides to go for treatment while House desperatly searches for meds that will prolong Wilson’s life or even cure him. Then House and Wilson will stay FAR away from PPTH and Cuddy and live happily ever after as BBF.

  • Grace

    Good-Bye Barbara and thanks for everything. I really enjoyed your blog.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/barbara-barnett barbara barnett

    Thanks Grace. I do hope you’ll stay tuned for other things BC and I cover and will add in the weeks and months to come!

  • Action Kate

    Copied from the previous thread, and I stand by my predictions:

    Chase: Running diagnostics, with Taub but not the other two. Six months into the first serious, considered relationship he’s had since Cameron, and his girlfriend is not a medical professional at all.

    Taub: Still in diagnostics working for Chase, because it’s just enough excitement to keep him interested but stable enough that he doesn’t want to look for something else. Still juggling the two girls. He’s had two short relationships but between his job and his daughters nothing has stuck. He’s okay with that.

    Foreman: Running the asylum, which is easier with the chief inmate gone. Hangs out with Taub on Friday nights. Occasionally consults with this crazy guy he found on the Internet (see below).

    Cuddy: I’m going with The Other Barnett’s prediction from the other thread:
    “I imagine Cuddy in D.C. working as an HMO/PPO consultant with the Obama administration as it ramps up the Health Care plan. She is out almost every weeknight for D.C. fundraisers or dinner parties — all the while complaining to her sister over the phone or her personal assistant about how she is missing Rachel’s life. She goes out with different lobbyists (handsome), single congressmen (charming), and administration wonks (interesting and fun) every Saturday night, but goes to bed alone thinking of House (how he hurt her and the sex they had). Sundays are spent with Rachel at different sites around D.C. and at home.”

    Cameron: Happily married with munchkin, as we saw. Thinking about moving into a practice; she’s had enough of the ER but not enough of solving puzzles.

    13: Her girlfriend gave her coup de grâce on a beach in Mykonos two years ago, at 13’s request.

    Adams and Park: Didn’t care about them during the series; why start now?

    Stacy: Not enough evidence to speculate. Although lord, I hope the botox has worn off by that point.

    Masters: Found an incredible opportunity in Europe somewhere and pursued it specifically because it scared the hell out of her. She’s still a stammering geek, but she’s found colleagues who like and appreciate her.

    House and Wilson: Wilson’s tumor spontaneously regressed enough that when he found himself alive on Christmas, four months past his “expiration date,” he had it checked again and found it could be operated on. Surgery was successful, and he and House set up a clinic/cantina in Baja California treating anyone who walks in, whether they pay in cash, chickens, or tequila. House keeps himself from going insane by setting up a website for people to send their weird problems for his diagnosis (like Kutner did, but for real, and under an assumed name). Foreman knows it’s him, and House knows it’s Foreman writing to him, but Foreman is never going to expose him and House is never coming back to New Jersey, so it’s all good.

  • ELW

    Just wanted to thank you Barbara for sharing your years of analysis of House MD – I miss it very much, but have moved on. Thanks for contributing to that part of a special several years of my life – Cheers. House will “live on” as well” for all of us.

  • Lucas

    First at all, I always love all the things you wrote, Barbara. You’re always right about everything.

    After the great final we’ve seen in “Everybody Dies”, I think Wilson is really gonna die. House will be very upset and sad, and he’ll feel more miserable than ever. He would just find Cuddy on a bus stop, with little Rachel, recognizing him, by the time he’s walking to get them. He’s happy – not so much – she’s surprised, but angry at the same time. She doesn’t wanna know anything about what he’s gonna say, but in any way, he says “SORRY, LISA” in a deep tone. She’s gonna see him, only to give him a hug. But, House won’t tell her that Wilson’s dead. Maybe he’d do it later. But, he’ll try to recover the ruined friendship between House and Cuddy. I hope that… but we won’t know…

  • Kaliera

    I didn’t watch S8, but for one or two episodes, but did watch the finale (and kept up on S8 online). Then ran into David Shore a few weeks later and told him honestly, I thought it was a good finale that left it open for anyone to speculate what happens next, which, given the nature of finales was about the best you can hope for. So good for him for that. I did not mention the inane plot holes, how insulting a character Dominika was or the waste that was Park and ESPECIALLY Adam. Or that Chase’s ending was the best. We both agreed that losing Cuddy was hard becuase she was a big part of the “heart” of House, but that Lisa E. was gone, and the show had to go on.

    In my vision, there is no miracle for House in regards to Wilson. He doesn’t beleive in them and House finds Cancer boring. He’s not going to find some kind of miracle treatment in 6 months. So they spend about 5 months on the road, and 2 months in the last stages and Wilson dies.

    Wilson has cashed out everything and left it to House so he had money to survive. And I don’t think it’s possible to take on Wilson’s identity becuase Wilson DIES and has a funeral, etc. so he can’t just start publishing again (he’s not Tupac dag nabbit!)

    I like the idea of House bumming around and earning money in an online diagnostic venture. That sounds very much like House.

    And at some point he crosses paths with Cuddy again. In my most “fangirly” moments, I think we find out that Cuddy was pregnant and only found out the night of the car crash (as she has assigned all previous symptons to her breakup and illness). This sudden shift in her world view is the only reason I could see why she would leave the hospital THE NEXT day after the crash. Nothing else makes sense, and frankly something good for Cuddy should come from that S7 finale…

    I know the baby thing is kind of redic (and denied by House as something he wants), but I was so sad they just glossed over House’s upbringing and relationship with his father. Whether he and Cuddy get back together is frankly irrelevent to me (although I suspect they’ll always be off and on), but House dealing with a son would have emotional impact for me becuase it would force House to stop drifting. Would he go back to prison for his son? Or be a fly by night dad? I don’t know, but he’d at least be forced to choose.

    I also think it’s strange that House doesn’t have an implant installed that blocks the brain from recieving pain signals. My brother has one for chronic back pain and hooks it up whenever the pain is bad in order to not become a Vicodin addict.

    Forman continues to be boring and unpersonalble and the worst administrator ever. Cameron divorces the 2nd husband and a then a third but finds happiness in motherhood. Taub marries again to a Real Housewife and continues to cheat – but at least learns to put on a condom. Thirteen dies, but House doesn’t have to kill her as she moves to Washington or Oregon which are right to die states.

  • Lucas

    This is what I think that could happen in the characters I’ve ever loved to watch on TV. Thanks Barbara, for all the thoughts you’ve shared with us, I’ve always loved all the things you wrote. You’re always right. Here in Argentina, House MD is one of the most watched TV Shows in history. So, here I go:

    1) HOUSE:

    I think House is gonna be very upset, and he won’t accept Wilson’s death. He won’t be the same anymore. Maybe, as I read here before, he’d run an online diagnostic service, under a false name – it’s not possible to use his friend’s name, because he always respected him and it’s obvious there will be papers that certified his death.

    2) WILSON:

    Yeap. As I’ve written before here, he’ll die. That’s the end of all. His last words will be “Goodbye, Greg. Thanks for all”, while House is crying, and he’s angry at the same time. He left to House some personal things, such as a photo of both of them, maybe money, and other things. In his funeral, Sam Carr maybe returns to say goodbye, as well his other two ex-wives. But, nobody from PPTH will be there, as it’s possible they don’t know anything…

    3) FOREMAN:

    Foreman will continue to be the Dean of Medicine, but he will be tired of this, he knows that he misses House, even after all House did to him. He knows he’ll lose a lot of patients. So, he started a search for House – he knows that House is alive, after I saw the season finale. Maybe he won’t find him so easily, and soon, but he will. I don’t think he’ll quit of this job, that’s because I think he likes it, but we all know it’s not the same. If Cuddy returns, he’ll give her the job back, and he’ll be in the Mercy Hospital.

    4) CUDDY:

    Cuddy, Cuddy, what would happen to her? I don’t know. But, she’ll know that ‘House is dead’. She’s gonna be sad, and even she’d ask why didn’t see visit him to say everything they didn’t say after “Moving On” (season 7 finale). She may returns to the PPTH, she sees Foreman doing her ‘old’ job. But, as I wrote before, Foreman will give the job to Cuddy, so Cuddy becomes the Dean of Medicine, again. But, she’s not happy so much, as House is not there anymore. She feels miserable, but she’s a little bit happy with his daughter, Rachel. She’s gonna have another baby. It’s a boy. She’s married with the guy she knew on season 7 (I can’t remember if he has a name). Foreman asked her to let him go to the Mercy Hospital.

    5) CHASE:

    I have to say that the final time we see Chase being in the role of House, being the leader in the place of House, is great and I love it. Chase was the choice, always, to do House’s job once he retired or – in this case – died. He doesn’t know House is still alive, but he’ll find the truth after some time. He’s dating with a girl. And he’ll get married.

    6) CAMERON:

    I love the final scene of her and her husband and child. I think she stays in Chicago, running the ER, as the head of it. She sometimes thinks about House, but she’s happy because House is not in pain anymore. She remembers all the good times, between them and Chase and Foreman. She won’t return to the PPTH.

    7) TAUB:

    Well, Taub is seen happy with his daughters at the end. I think he’ll be better with his ex-wife Rachel, and she’s not gonna go anywhere. She’s not longer with Paul (I think it’s his name), but she won’t get married to Taub again. Maybe dating, but not that. He’ll buy a big house, and he will marry to Ruby.

    8) “13”:

    As everybody knows, she will die. Not now, I think, maybe three years later. House is not gonna do the favor he promised in season 7 (One of the most beautiful scenes I watched from HOUSE). Meanwhile, she’s with her girlfriend. She’ll work in a hospital, but she won’t return to PPTH. One day, she’ll find Foreman in a bus stop. She’s surprised.

    9) MASTERS:

    I have to say that Masters is one of the characters I loved so much. I always like the way she fought House. When he fired her, he hired her, and so on. Masters will be gone from PPTH, and with her roommate Donnovan, she will be in Europe, guiding the tourists around the famous cities there.

    10) PARK and ADAMS:

    I like Adams, but Park not so much. One of the reasons I didn’t like season 8 so much, was because of Park. She got some correct ideas and she had good moments (especially the scene in the episode “Holding On” when she punches House with his cane, but she messed up the scene with her face). She’s gonna be in Chase’s team, like we saw in “Everybody Dies”, but after that, maybe 2 years later, she’ll come back to Neurology. Meanwhile, Adams will stay in the team, and with Chase, they’ll start to hire new team members.

    So, that’s what I think that could happen to characters! See you!

  • VJ

    Just want to say thanks Barbara for your wonderful reviews over the years that really made me view not just House, but television in general in a more discerning manner.

  • OPLZ

    I had forgotten how ridiculously “Huddy” this site is. Some people just cannot let go. Ever.

    Disturbing delusions notwithstanding, I would like to say “thank you” Barbara for all of your efforts.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/barbara-barnett barbara barnett

    You’re welcome OPLZ. I don’t think I’ve been particularly “Huddy” for quite awhile, however.

  • lobentti

    I just want to thank Barbara and say good bye to all of you, it was a great pleasure to share ideas with this group! thanks a lot!

  • Jane E

    Remember Son of A Coma Guy in season 3? He asked House whey did you become a doctor when you obviously hate people? House response was because of the Buraku he watched when his dad was in Japan. That was House. Sloppily dressed, not much expected of him but here this man was a healer.

    I think House would drift around and work like the Buraku. I think using Wilson’s name would be a tribute and his way to be able to practice medicine. But at one point, I do believe he would go to Cuddy. She was his true love and obsession. I believe Cuddy would realize she had just in much fault as House when it came to his total relapse and poor judgement!

    Remember House’s motto: You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you find you get what you need.

  • Jane E

    Also thanks Barbara, I so looked forward to your reviews each week and having our great discussions. I as you do love Once Upon A Time and look forward to enjoying the same time of internet fun as we have here.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/barbara-barnett barbara barnett

    Thank you!

    SOCG is one of my favorite episodes of the entire series. We learn so much about House and who he is, and what drives him. It’s brilliant. I think you may be right about what House does after Wilson dies. I like that idea alot!

  • The Other Barnett

    I’ll return to the post I made before this…..

    Park – Still on diagnostics at PPTH, making money on the side with a website that puts out a monthly story about a sexy, genius asian female doctor who heads up a diagnostics team in Trenton, NJ.

    Adams – Still on diagnostics at PPTH. Dating a member of the Hospital Board that is old enough to be her father. She has taken over for Chase as the local TV station’s “doc in residence” named “Doctor Feelgood”. She gets postcards from Hawaii for no reason.

    Dr. Nolan – PPTH Dean of Medicine, brought along Dr. Beasley to serve in Psychiatric Medicine. He is also getting postcards from Hawaii with historical themes.

    Cuddy – After leaving D.C., she is now the medical correspondent for the CBS morning show (imagine Sanjay Gupta with cleavage). She is dating a certain unnamed former PPTH doctor who has moved to NYC. Annually for the last couple years, she has received a CD of Hawaiian music in the mail.

    Masters – Is a member of the PPTH faculty. In order to be eligible to teach, she is a member (in name only) of the diagnostics team. This forces her to return periodically to diagnostics to help on a case.

    Taub – Has joined his wife and her new husband (and brought along the other baby-momma with him) in Israel to run a clinic at a kibbutz. He keeps an online diary that is regularly followed by Park, 13, and Foreman.

    13 – At the end stages of Huntingtons in the middle of South Sudan, alone, mostly bed-ridden and providing insight on diagnositic challenges at a doctors without borders refugee clinic, but unable to physically practice. She receives a CD annually from Hawaii showing footage from burleque shows accompanied by wry jokes and commetnary of the performances.

    Cameron – Married, with two kids and back at PPTH running the ER. Comes back to diagnostics regularly to assist with cases that originate in the ER. Is still trying to determine who signed her up for a “Hawaiian Lei of the Month” club.

    Foreman – Two years after being fired from PPTH, now heading up Diagnostics at a New York City teaching hospital. Rumors abound of him being seen in intimate meetings with a well-known TV news medical correspondent. Annually he receives a pineapple in the mail – shipped straight from a Hawaiian plantation.

    Stacy – Is divorced from Mark. She has returned to PPTH as the Legal Advisor. She is planning a trip to Hawaii after receiving a mysteriously detailed letter inviting her to join someone at a Leper Colony.

    Chase – Head of Diagnostics at PPTH. In a relationship with Dr. Beasley – but not serious. Meeting with Nolan on a regular basis after hours for counseling. Has developed a slight limp from his injury from five years ago and even uses a cane of House’ during the winter. On the first anniversary of House’ death, he discovers a letter that was “never mailed” to him from House that pours out about how proud he is of Chase and a ten commandments of how to deal with diagnostics. Chase reads the letter on a monthly basis.

    Wilson – Dead for the last four years. He outlasted his diagnosis and was found by House on the northern California beach next to his motorcycle – having died in his sleep. His ashes are half-spilled in the Pacific Ocean and half contained in a Mason Jar with House.

    House – Serving as a bartender/doctor at a Hawaiian Leper Colony. Having taken on the name of James W(ilson) Holmes, he is on the cusp of discovering a treatment to reverse the affects of leprosy. On a semi-regular basis he sends an anonymous crank letter to CBS complaining about the size of the medical correspondent’s (he calls her “Lester Cooty”) butt. On each anniversary of Wilson’s death, he takes five times his “normal” dose of vicodin and chases it down with a bottle of Jack Daniels and sleeps away the next few days. He is uncertain about the arrival of Stacy, as he is also booking a flight to South Sudan.

  • Tigerfeet

    Thank you Barbara for all your insightful episode analysis’ and articles on House through the years. You have truly enhanced my appreciation of the show, as has many of the dedicated commentators of this blog.

  • Amie

    I have gradualy lost interest in House during the last 2 seasons but have seen all the episodes, albeit not as eagerly as I had before. I watched the last 4 episodes more than a month later!

    I haven’t really the time, or is it the interest, to read this last review and its comments, but I wanted to come by to thank Barbara for the wonderful time I’ve had reading her blog and everyones’ comment. The debates were passionate and interesting and wonderful. And I loved how you always managed to put 2 and 2 together and made me see things in a different way.

    So: Thank you!

    And I hope to read you soon about some other show we both fall in love with.

  • http://dprice218.wordpress.com David Price

    I would like to think that the best scenario, while remaining ‘most true’ to the plot already developed, would be for House to somehow become more or less a form of that Japanese janitor/’part-time’ doctor (who House refers to in the 2nd season episode “Coma Guy”) who was called upon only when all the other doctors’ efforts to solve a case failed.

  • http://quarryhillcreativecenter.blogspot.com Ladybelle Fiske

    One reason Cuddy left the next day was to be SURE that House couldn’t find her (and Rachel) again. She loved but feared him– and her action was the only sane one, if not fun for us. I wonder what happened with Lisa E. and the show. We prob. will never really know.

    And by the way, House would not say “SORRY LISA.” — He never called her anything but Cuddy, nor did she ever call him Greg as Stacy always did. I liked Stacy best as his partner anyway… She is a beautiful and intelligent and funny woman, a match for House.
    Yet, I always liked Lise Edelstein (since The West Wing)… and the show lost a lot without her. Foreman never should have been Dean,but he did pretty well… just not exciting. A woman would probably have been a better choice.
    I think Wilson dies (as people really DO) and so does 13, with or without House’s help. I doubt House turns himself in. WHY waste his life that way?
    The online diagnosis clinic sounds a good idea, but he might also learn and teach physics or something else worthy of his intelligence…
    I miss House and all of the other characters. (Never liked Taub or Park much. Kept hoping Chase would get it on with Adams but nothing happened!).
    Anyway, my life is not the same without those guys, and never will be. I’m sorry they’re gone and not even a last commentary…

  • http://quarryhillcreativecenter.blogspot.com Ladybelle Fiske

    Yes, Holmes/House…Reichenbach Falls… thanks David Shore for “His Last Bow.”
    And the fact that House finally wakes up and becomes, in a sense, enlightened.
    Someone said it is the story of Buddha… in a very odd way.
    “Die to yourself
    And be completely dead.
    Then do whatever you want:
    It’s all good.” — somebody or other (a famous mystic)

  • Apathycase

    I have a different theory for House future. He dies too.

    I don’t think he’d live long without Wilson. I actually see him administering the ‘deadly injection’ once Wilson’s cancer got too bad, and then doing the same to himself. His ‘everyone dies alone’ theory broken the same way he manages to break every other rule and Wilson’s fear of going through it alone is unrealized. They die together when the times comes, having spent their remaining time having fun together and fulfilling both of their bucket lists. (I am a romantic)

    Otherwise, he dies a nameless drug addict on the streets.

    I think the years of drug use and general apathy to his own well-being have not been as kind to House as we would like to believe. I also know that hitting 50 is hard on the body. Joint pain and stiffness along with House’s already bum leg would be torturous. Getting a hold of more Vicoden would prove very problematic, now that he has burned his medical bridges and Wilson‘s scripts are useless. Heroin is not a hard leap to make, and it is defiantly easier for a nameless drifter to get a hold of then real heavy duty pain medication.

    I believe House did want to change at the end, but I think that really only applies to his selfless decision regarding Wilson, because I can’t see him keeping that kind of philosophy going in the long run. He has touched upon suicide and suicidal behavior so many times in the past few seasons that all it would take is one night when the pain of missing Wilson gets to be too strong to push him over that edge. Dealing with feelings has never been his strong suit and time and time again we have seen him revert to very self-destructive behaviors because of it. The realization that he has lost not only his best friend, but the puzzles that supposedly gave his life meaning would be too much for him emotionally.

    House is just too damaged to be able to start over, especially after such a lose. That makes any attempts at a relationship with some new very unlikely. With no medical mysteries, no easy access to pain meds, no friends / familiar faces, and no real reason to keep on going, I think he will fall back on his time honored tradition of just trying to escape the pain. And whatever form that avoidance takes will probably just kill him, because this time there is nothing stopping him from going too far.

    Compared to that ending, I definitely like me first scenario better.

  • Jules

    37 – David Price

    Wasn’t House always the “Baraku” throughout anyway?
    His department was ‘created’ for him to solve cases that other doctors couldn’t?

    I like to think (since he finally developed upon his immature emotional side and selfishness in the finale) that once Wilson died he joined the doctors without borders (under a pseudonym) in a remote part of the world and discovered new diseases & treatments…..