House - One Day, One Room
Thursday, February 1, 2007
I was never more relieved to find out my favorite Doctor was still a drug addict - TV Doctor, that is. Of course, I'm talking about House, and the wild rouse that culminated into what LOST's Sawyer might have called a 'Long Con' at the conclusion of 'Words and Deeds'. Up until 'Deeds' much of this season had centered on House's struggle with the substance of the character we have come to rely on as a bitter pill; the self effacement, the blatant drug abuse, the bravado, the legendary insults that burn with a shot of vulgar reality, even his cane seemed in question at one point. After 'Deeds', I'd hoped House was back to true form. With 'One Day, One Room' there is little doubt that House is back. In fact, you'd hardly know he was ever gone.
Despite the failed heavy-handed attempts at character reform, Cuddy still believes she can pummel some humility into House's black soul. Her ace? The fact that she perjured herself to keep House out of jail. Cuddy believes her sacrifice buys loyalty from House, with the expectation that he will fly straight from now on. Of course, House bats this back with his typical wit and not-so-veiled flirting. You definitely get the feeling that House and Cuddy's romantic tension is reaching a critical mass.
As it turns out, clinic time is no cakewalk for House. Just when you think you might get treated to an hour of House chastising wimpy hypochondriacs along comes Eve, an emotionally complex character who provides for House, and us, a psychological test rather than a medical one. Eve has been raped, and as a result has contracted Chlamydia, and a pregnancy. She is immediately and violently resistant to House's attempts to treat here, which of course invokes that sense of challenge in House that makes him, well, House.
Ultimately, this episode is about House opening up, peeling back the layers - or is it? With the Tritter situation in the past, we are haunted by how it exited. As House opens him-self up to the girl with tales of his own abuse as a child and inner pain at the hands of his grandmother, we can't help but remember the revelations at the end of 'Deeds'. In the end we find out House was indeed lying, but not how it may have seemed. In fact, his tales of horrid Ice Baths and other sadism were real, but the circumstances were different. In the end the patient is helped, but also serves as a catharsis post for House.
Yes there is plenty of off the wall mysterious medical goings on with the rest of the team, but none of that was hardly as interesting as this introspective look at House and his sense of himself. 'One Day, one room' proved that the dreaded sense that the writers were going to try to normalize House is far-far-gone, and the ability for House to continue to raise above the typical medical procedural is alive and kicking.