As "Everybody Dies," the series finale of FOX's House opens, Dr. House (Hugh Laurie) is lying next to the dead body of his patient of the week (or, POtW) in a burning building. Throughout most of the hour, House converses with hallucinations of some important people in his life, as he tries to decide whether he should live or die.
"Everybody Dies" is dark. There is no denying that. It's obvious when the first image House sees is Dr. Lawrence Kutner (Kal Penn), a fellow who killed himself. Strangely, though, Kutner is trying to talk House out of suicide, while House is the one arguing that life is pointless.
Then Amber (Anne Dudek) appears. Her death is more tragic, but she still argues for life. Stacy (Sela Ward) wants House to try to find happiness again, but he continues to resist. Finally, though, Cameron (Jennifer Morrison) tells him to just lie down, letting the choice be taken from him. This House does, before thinking better of it.
These people are House's subconscious, and as such, he appears to be waging a war within himself. It's thrilling to see these former characters reappear, but besides being a gift to viewers, who they are isn't so important as what they say. House knows that death is the easy way out. He is not going to be able to enjoy the sort of life he has been enjoying much longer, even though his life hasn't been all that fun. Soon, his best friend will be dead, and even sooner, House will be back in jail, wasting Wilson's (Robert Sean Leonard) final moments on earth. So why not end it all?
Even in this darkest of moments, though, House fights on, as he always has. By making the people from his past appear to him, he talks himself out of such a deed. It's telling that he starts with the most tragic figure, and builds to the ones that love him the most. The trajectory is an upswing, and in retrospect, House moves closer to life with each passing moment. But viewers are tricked into missing this by the POW scenes, which are of a more depressing nature.