The twenty Vicodin subplot frames House’s state of mind during the five days we follow him. But it also parallels the episode’s main plot and the dynamic between House and the medical case.
The only thing in “Twenty Vicodin” that didn’t ring quite true to me was the bit of exposition House provides about the crash. To me it sounded like a bit of backtracking and rationalization—not so much on House’s part, but by the series—in reaction to the storm of controversy (and negativity) about the season seven finale’s ending.
“I knew the room was empty; I knew Rachel wasn’t there” to me sound like explanations not only to the parole board, but to the viewers. And maybe it’s because all summer I was hyper-aware of the negativity (more so since I didn’t agree with it), the scene seems, to me a bit artificial and tacked on for the fans’ benefit.
So, on to next week and “Transplant.” When House gets out of prison in next week’s episode, he will have to adapt big time. Little in the world he has known for years will be the same. I am looking forward to following House as he struggles with his new circumstances, the new dynamics at the hospital, and with his guilt.
As much as I enjoyed “Huddy” and as much as I enjoyed Lisa Edelstein, her departure opens up a world of new possibilities for the show. I look forward to the rest of season eight, so bring it on!