Welcome to the water cooler. Here’s the place to share your immediate reaction to tonight’s House, M.D. I will post a more detailed commentary tomorrow sometime, but in the mean time, here’s the place to rant or rave about “Fall From Grace.”
My longer commentary: House, M.D. Gregory House’s “Fall From Grace”
First the bad. I was not crazy about some of the very over-the-top shenanigans House pulls this week; I definitely could have done without the monster truck differential scene. I understand what House is attempting to do in the other scenes, but monster trucks?
In my opinion, the writers could have gotten the same point across without the gimmicks; having House go so over the top that his actions suspend my believability even within the House-verse. I think they disrupted the flow of an otherwise good episode. Once the gimmicks disappear, the episode improves immeasurably.
The team treats a homeless man who has received burns while camping in a local park. A former junkie, he won’t give his name to anyone. And with burn scars all over his torso after having been abused as a child, he elicits the sympathy of Martha Masters, who wants to rescue him.
Meanwhile, House has apparently bounced back from last week’s deep depression with a strategy to use Cuddy’s guilt to get (and get away with) all sorts of things. His tactics include riding the hallways of Princeton-Plainsboro on a Segway, flying remote controlled helicopters above the hospital’s main foyer, parking a monster truck in six handicap spaces, and entering into a fraudulent marriage with a woman needing a green card. It is to be a quid pro quo arrangement: she will act as his assistant and housekeeper in exchange for the marriage vows.
Bravo to Wilson for giving up on getting through to House, who is too wrapped up in lashing out at Cuddy to listen to reason (even from his best friend). Convincing Cuddy to stop appeasing House (no matter how guilty she may feel) helps both her and House.
I am still a bit stunned that House went through with the marriage (officiated by Chase!?), but satisfied with the end. Many seasons ago Cuddy told Wilson that House knows just where to point the sharp stick (“Finding Judas,” Season 3), and if House really wanted to hurt Cuddy, he hit his mark.
But this is something he immediately regrets (hurting Cuddy in this way, if not the marriage), as is clear from the expression on his face when she bolts the living room. And it’s clearly what’s on House’s mind in the afterglow of the wedding. He can’t bring himself to sleep with his new wife.
I liked the conversation between House and the homeless patient; there is a flicker of understanding in House’s expression. When the patient tells House that he can’t “understand” what it is like to be an abuse survivor, it is obvious that House very clearly understands.
But the patient isn’t only an abuse survivor. He’s a psychopathic serial murderer. I should have seen that coming when the team noted bone fragments in his digestive tract. No wonder he wouldn’t give his name!
Just added: videoblog with the writer of tonight’s episode John Kelly (“Knight Fall”).
More tomorrow. I know you all will have much to say in the thread below. So have at it!
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