In honor of House M.D., 10th Anniversary (it debuted on Fox, November 2004), we’ve put together a little poll, asking you, fans of the series: Of the eight season finales of the series, which one is the best. How do we define “best?” I would suggest it would mean: the most compelling, shocking, satisfying finale of the series. Which one made you cry? Which one left you breathless all summer until the next season’s premiere (unless you select the series finale, of course!)
Perhaps a little review is in order. Click on the links for full reviews of each episode. I do not have a direct link to the first season finale’s review, but I’ve linked to the Blogcritics season one episode guide, instead.
Season One: “Three Stories”/”Honeymoon“
I would count these two pivotal episodes as a two-part finale. In “Three Stories,” arguably the best episode of the entire series, we finally learn how House’s leg got ruined, while beginning to understand how far he’d fallen from the guy who was in a committed relationship with a high-powered, woman, and played golf to the anti-social loner he’d become by the time we’d met him in the series pilot. The finale sets up the story arc for the beginning of season two, in which Stacy (Sela Ward) comes back into House’s life–for better or worse, giving a lot of insight into House’s tormented psyche and what’s inside his heart–beneath the hard shell.
Season Two: “No Reason“
“No Reason” left us with a shocking cliffhanger, when House is shot point-blank by a former patient’s husband. The episode is a wild and weird journey into House’s hallucinatory mind as he lies bleeding to death on his office carpet. It leads to an intense third season story arc in which House delights in finally being pain free, as a direct result of the events in “No Reason,” and then struggles with the knowledge that his condition will be short-lived. And his life spirals downward from there.
Season Three: “Human Error“
Human Error is one of the stranger season finales in the season, ending the episode on an upbeat note. Coming on the heels of a season of disappointment and trouble for House, which ends in the firing of Chase (Jesse Spencer) and the resignation of both Foreman (Omar Epps) and Cameron (Jennifer Morrison), “Human Error,” ends with House playing a new guitar and a smile on his face. No cliffhanger this season.
Season Four: “House’s Head“/”Wilson’s Heart“
Although season four was shortened due to the Writers Guild strike, and played out a bit uneven as House played “Survivor” to replace his three fellows, the season four finale could not have been more stunning with the two-parter, “House’s Head” and “Wilson’s Heart.” In the end, we wondered about the lasting effects of House’s actions–and even more importantly, how they would affect his relationship with his best friend James Wilson.
Season Five: “Both Sides Now“
The season five finale builds from Kutner’s (Sean Penn) suicide mid-season, and the guilt House had carried with him from Amber’s death at the end of season four. Combined with his increasing feelings for Cuddy, it all had become too much, and in the end, House finally breaks, his psyche shattered. The episode ends where season six begins–in a psychiatric hospital, where House begins to put himself back together.
Season Six: “Help Me“
In another stunning season finale, House bares his soul while trying to help a disaster victim. Visually stunning and emotional eviscerating, “Help Me” ends with House again teetering on the brink, but this time it is Cuddy who comes to the rescue and leads to their season seven doomed romance.
Season Seven: “Moving On“
This is probably the most controversial of all House season finales. Ending with House crashing his car into Cuddy’s home, it was a stunning choice for the producers, and launched a summer-long debate about whether House had finally gone too far. Between my review and an interview I did with the episode’s writers, more than 1,000 comments filled Blogcritics’ pages throughout the summer. By the time the episode aired, everyone knew that Lisa Edelstein would not be returning to the show as Lisa Cuddy, but how that would affect the series, no one knew. The cliffhanger led to a prison stint for House, and a new new boss: his former fellow, Foreman!
Season Eight: “Everybody Dies“
In what many call a perfect ending for the series, House really does a Sherlock Holmes, staging his own death on the eve of his re-incarceration, and for the most altruistic of all reasons: to be at Wilson’s side in the months before the oncologist’s ironic death from cancer.
So…what do you all think?[amazon template=iframe image&asin=B008P9M614,B000R9YLKY,B003R0MF3A,B0009WPM1Q,B001A4VH2U,B0053O89JM,B000FVQLIO,B002JVWR7M,B001CDO8YS,B0024FAD8I]