Tuesday, October 23, 2007

House: I ain't sayin' she a gravedigger...

Spoilers for "House" coming up just as soon as I pretend that someone else was imitating me...

Awww, Scooter/Bosley! I'll miss you, you lovable old coot! Again, with the names of the final three actors already out there in the media ether (and let's keep being as vague as possible in the comments, for the benefit of people who don't read the trades), I figured Scooter wasn't long for the show, but I'm disappointed he went home before some of the real deadweight. (Spoiler alert -- and I'm only doing it because he clearly ain't getting the job -- I'm looking at you, guy pictured above who played Huff's crazy brother on "Huff.") I at least liked the rationale for dumping the old man, but since the show's going to be overpopulated anyway, why not let him stick around in the glorified administrative assistant job House promised him a few episodes ago?

I don't know if the medical mysteries have gotten more interesting of late, or if I'm just paying more attention because House's candidate search has breathed some new life into the show, but I really liked this ghost story. Not sure how Cutthroat Bitch convinced the patient that she was talking to last episode's dead guy, but beyond that, a lot of interesting twists and turns, and the moment where the woman had to say goodbye to the hallucination of her dead mama was as touching as intended. Cameron trying to give Big Love a leg up -- whether out of support for the most sensitive fellowship candidate or just a way for her to screw with house now that she's blonde and bold and all that -- was also fun.

(It occurs to me, by the way, that the candidate search is falling into the same writing/editing trap as the reality competition shows it's spoofing. Big Love and Bosley got by far the most screen time of the candidates -- though Cutthroat Bitch and Nickname-less Plastic Surgeon weren't ignored, either -- and so I figured one of those two would be let go.)

I'm a bit surprised that Foreman is coming back to rejoin House's team instead of starting his own. On the one hand, it spares the already too-busy show from having to shift to an ongoing A-story/B-story structure that might prove less amusing. On the other, if House is hiring three newbies and is forced to take Foreman back, and eventually -- or so we assume -- Cameron and Chase are going to come back into the fold, the ongoing team is going to be almost as big as the temporary team we had tonight. It's working right now because House is screwing with everybody and amusing himself in the process, but will he be able to play as many games when everyone's status becomes permanent?

What did everybody else think?

24 comments:

Andrew said...

They did the leave the door at least slightly open to bringing Scooter back in future episodes when they joked about hanging out with Wilson at the end. It'd be nice if he had small recurring part as House's friend. House needs another friend damnit.

Anthony Foglia said...

I think Scooter was just joking, but I can't figure out if he was telling House to call Wilson or completing House's sentence that Scooter should call Wilson.

I agree that the guy in the photo is deadweight. Even last episode he was nobody. And I had forgotten he was still around until he popped up on screen. Even House couldn't think of anything to say to him and Kal Penn other than "nice job."

BTW, I don't think Scooter was ever offered an assistant job instead of one of the three open slots. I'm pretty sure House meant Scooter could get one of the slots, but if so, it would be as an "assistant" not as a "doctor."

PS: Did you notice Scooter gave the plastic surgeon the finger as they were leaving House's office to go talk to the dead mother?

BigTed said...

I thought this was a great episode. I don't mind having the large number of characters around -- it keeps any of them from growing as tiresome as the three cottages were by last year. And the candidate search has been a lot more fun than the other things the show has done to shake things up in the past (the new administrator, the cop, etc.). The only one I'm not happy to see is Foreman, who was always kind of a drag, and is even more so as he returns home in defeat.

But while the medical mystery was fun, the idea of hallucinations through natural ergot poisoning has already been used in several mystery novels -- and unless someone was sneaking the patient moldy organic bread in the hospital, the substance would have passed from her body within a few hours.

nfieldr said...

I'm enjoying the new dynamic this season, but it suddenly hit me tonight... I *really* don't like a lot of these people. I absolutely can't stand Cutthroat Bitch, I don't like the Plastic Surgeon, I don't particularly like Kal Penn's character or 13, and come to think of it, I've never liked Forman either. Geez... I wonder why I continue to watch. :-)

christy said...

When Big Love punched House, it was awesome!

Anonymous said...

So glad House got decked. He had it coming, especially after the really offensive racial language he used in this episode.

No post on the last (possibly) episode of DAMAGES? Great ending - a real surprise, at least to me.

Anonymous said...

I thought Scooter giving the plastic surgeon the finger was a great touch (he did it as he was saying that next time he'd provide visual aids to help plastic surgeon understand).

At the risk of derailing this thread slightly (and Alan, please delete this if you don't want us to discuss this here), I agree with Anon that the last episode of Damages was very good. There was great symmetry with the main surprise in the first episode, and it paid off, sensibly, nearly all of the somewhat pulpy twists of the season. My only small complaint is that it seems that the set up for season 2 is too Shield-like.

M.A.Peel said...

Don't know about that Damages, but what's happened to Cuddy? The writers don't seem to know what to do with her anymore. What happen to the baby plans? Her "dates" with Wilson? Her scenes now feel really perfunctory and aimless.

Matt said...

I believe Alan gave up on "Damages" some time ago, but yeah, that ending was pretty great, especially if we get to see how it plays out in a second season. (Doesn't quite make up for the turgid middle of the season.)

And I don't know if Cameron/Chase have to rejoin "the team" to still be involved. This week, Cameron played a pseudo-Wilson/Cuddy role. Giving House more people to bump up against who he (at least kind of) respects is a good thing.

Jon Delfin said...

"Not sure how Cutthroat Bitch convinced the patient that she was talking to last episode's dead guy"

How hard would it be to implant a suggestion into the mind of a patient who's tripping? Didn't seem like such a stretch to me.

Anonymous: I had the same "Shield" thought. Almost makes me hope the show doesn't come back.

Alan Sepinwall said...

As Matt said, I gave up on "Damages" three or four episodes into the season. If you want to talk about the final, please take it to Matt's own post about it at ALOTT5MA.

Alan Sepinwall said...

BTW, I don't think Scooter was ever offered an assistant job instead of one of the three open slots. I'm pretty sure House meant Scooter could get one of the slots, but if so, it would be as an "assistant" not as a "doctor."

You're probably right. The way it was presented at the end of the first group episode suggested Scooter might wind up working outside the search, but once the next episode began it was clear that he was just another candidate. Still, I liked the guy.

It's interesting how (vague spoiler alert, but I won't name any names) some of the people who aren't going to get hired have been getting more screen time and personality work than some who are. Guess you might as well use these characters while they're still on the show, but I felt more invested in Scooter than I do in any of the final three.

Dark Tyler said...

Anne Dudek's character is far, far, far and away the most interesting of the remaining five. (Oh, sorry Picture Guy, I meant six.)

J said...

Just really, really enjoying this show this year.

AndyW said...

Isn't it kind of a big problem that all these hopefuls are killing themselves to get on House's team, only to have Foreman return in defeat because working for House made him unfit for any other job? I trust the writers will have some fun with that, but I think the subtext should have been set up in this episode - maybe in the Cutty-Foreman scenes.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Isn't it kind of a big problem that all these hopefuls are killing themselves to get on House's team, only to have Foreman return in defeat because working for House made him unfit for any other job?

But the point is that it made Foreman unfit for any other job. Chase and Cameron seem to be doing just fine in their new gigs. Foreman was always the most House-like cottage (though apparently not so similar that he fell into the Scooter trap), but I don't see a lot of personality overlap between any of the remaining candidates and our main character.

AndyW said...

Given that all three cottages are now working for the same hospital that continues to employ House, there's still scant evidence that his tutelage is some kind of golden ticket. Well, unless the Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital is the greatest place of employment in all of medicine.

Matter-Eater Lad said...

I'd be happy if the original three cottages just went away and the new bunch replaced them. It's really hard to come up with anything new that could happen with Foreman, Cameron, or Chase. And, frankly, the wannabe cottages are already more interesting and thought-out than the originals ever were.

M.A.Peel said...

Cuddy telling Foreman that he's "House Lite" and she still has "House Classic" was good.

Anonymous said...

Amber "Cutthroat Bitch" isn't conventionally TV-beautiful like #13 or Cameron, so I presume without reading the trades she doesn't get the job, but she's been the most interesting character so far, though she'd be less interesting once she did get the job. But I agree with Andyw that I don't understand the appeal of working for House, given the lack of career success the ex-cottages are having. Then again, this is a self-selecting crew.

Ted

Tom said...

Really good episode. Nifty mystery, and exceptional character development. And I, too, want more Cuddy!

If Cuthroat Bitch joins Scooter on the discard heap I think they should be spun off into their own show.

Kristen said...

I enjoyed last night's episode, and thought House definitely had it coming when Big Love punched him.

I still wish Ridiculously Old Fraud hadn't left so soon.

Taleena said...

Of the contestants/fellows left I am hoping for Kumar and Plastic Surgeon, easily the most entertaining with the potential to continue to be so.

13 seems like a Cameron Redux and the other chick will have nothing to prove if she gets the fellowship. Doctors without Borders should go back and work in Sudan some more as he will be bored to tears in NJ and resent the wife.

On a different note, Alan are you going to start commenting on Journeyman if you ditch Heroes? Journeyman is turning really interesting especially with the intro of the Lawerence Livermore Labs guy.

Anthony Foglia said...

To build on Alan's point, Scooter and Foreman are both like House, but in different ways. Foreman may be stubborn and misanthropic like House, but Scooter thinks medical problems the same way as House. House would love to have more Foreman-esque clones, but Scooter-style clones wouldn't give him new perspectives to help him solve puzzles.