‘House’ recap: The good doctor
This episode of House, about a lonely, anhedonic, and coke-addled sleepwalker who suffered unexplained blackouts, ended with a scene so shocking that I felt like House had jabbed my heart with a needle full of epinephrine. And I am not talking about House making up with Cuddy by making out with her in the hallway of her home after she lost her would-be adopted baby, Joy. (Sad — she lost her joy, not unlike the main patient in the episode.) I’m referring to the moment when Cuddy asked House why he had to negate everything and he uttered the words “I don’t know.”
I don’t know if I can recall House ever confessing to not knowing the answer to any question — generally he remains silent, lost in thought till he can figure out the truth, the way he did while pondering Patient Sleepwalker’s medical mystery in Wilson’s office. Despite House’s typically on-point diagnosis, it was Wilson who really called it during that scene when he pointed out House’s infatuation with Cuddy: “You’re doing this because we no longer have inkwells and Cuddy no longer has pigtails.” House then took a bite of Wilson’s apple and retorted, “Why do you think I did that?”
Ah, the poison apple. One bite and only the kiss of a loved one can wake this man from his own unfeeling somnolent trudge through life. Nicely done. Also well played was House’s staging of a quick exit after giving his boss voluntary mouth to mouth. (We shouldn’t be surprised that the show knows how to do a cliff-hanger — we are generally treated to one before each commercial.) If House had played doctor with Cuddy and spent the night, we’d have less anxiety about the intention behind his kiss. Instead we are left to wonder what the kiss meant. And, sadly, I watched the preview, so I know that House is going back to his cave and denying his lust for life and for Cuddy. Frustrating!
But you know that is how it has to be because resolved discontent, at least as it relates to TV romance, pretty much ends the show (see Sam and Diane from Cheers and Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd from Moonlighting — God, I am old.) Tension keeps the thing moving along and rejection is the heart’s challenge. You can even see that in the music world — Miles Davis famously played with his back to the audience because he knew that it would only make us want him more.
NEXT: House’s version of comfort