So. Which six to choose, and how to pair them? If TPTB submit "Under My Skin" and "Both Sides Now" so they are seen together that could be an effective combination. Or how about "House Divided" with "Both Sides Now," if I wanted to give voters the "whole effect" of House's emotional collapse. On the other hand, maybe pairing two different types of episodes would work better, say, "Birthmarks" (which is a "road trip" with some nice comedy, good character development, and some serious exploration of House's psyche) with "House Divided," which had some hysterically funny bits, but was very, very dark, atmospheric—much darker than "Birthmarks." Neither of them are straight-up formula episodes.
I might also pair "Locked In" with "Both Sides Now." "Locked In" is really the start of House's decline, and would lead nicely into "Both Sides Now." Both follow the formula, but are not trapped by it, and have a lot of good character drama, fantastic writing and performances.
"Joy" and "Under My Skin" would work well together, because they, too are bookends of a sort, playing on the dynamic between House, Cuddy, and Wilson. What do you think? Let me know in the comments section below!
Now to the genius of Hugh Laurie. Why that man has yet to win an Emmy is simply beyond comprehension. He's received nominations in all years the series has been on except one (a highly criticized oversight). Unlike the series, Laurie can only pick one episode. But which one? It's not a formal poll, but write your choice in the comments section — and why. I'll tabulate in a week or so. It's a nearly impossible task. But I have faith.
My pick? I wouldn't want to bias you, now would I? Okay. Fine. Toss up: "House Divided" or "Under My Skin." Brilliant, subtle acting at its absolute finest. "House Divided" had much more humor and the definite advantage of House doing some cool stunt juggling. It was one of those episodes where Laurie could make you laugh and cry in the same scene. But either episode would do nicely.
Special Announcement: Coming soon (in about two weeks, or so): the "Welcome to the End of the Thought Process" Trivia Contest. Yes, you read it right, folks. Contest. With prizes—several of them. (And maybe even a grand prize, but I'm still working on that one.) So stay tuned, tell your friends, and stop back frequently.