Take it to the House

One of JerseyCool’s favorite predictable shows returns to the air tonight and Housenot a moment too soon. Our theory on yesterday’s big stink was that it was the collective stench of all the muck that’s been passing for TV this past month or so.

Anyway, we say predictable because House, set in our very own bucolic Princeton, NJ, is possibly the most formulaic of TV shows. A typical episode goes like this:

  • Mysterious illness strikes, usually a young girl or possibly a kitten.
  • House is intrigued. Sends his staff to perform meaningless tests, insulting them all the while.
  • Staff is perplexed by lab results. House insults them, usually something racist or sexist.
  • House argues with patient relatives. Tells them they’re liars then insults them some more.
  • House steps away from his office. Insults people in the hospital clinic.
  • Staff thinks they’ve solved the mystery. House is skeptical. Patient gets better.
  • Patient takes a turn for the worse. This usually involves blood. Lots of blood. House insults his staff and probably the patient as well.
  • At this point sappy music plays to show the seriousness of the situation.
  • House then has a seemingly meaningless conversation with someone but this sets him along the path of solving the medical mystery.
  • The patient gets better and leaves. House shrugs and then usually insults someone one more time.

Now, the fact this is predictable makes it no less fun. This in large part to Hugh Laurie’s performance. Quite honestly, HL could sit around reading the phone book and it would be more fascinating than 90 percent of what passes for television. Secretly, there’s a little House in all of us. We’ve all worked with idiots at some time or another. Most of us would want to tell them this. Most of the time we just have to suck it up and deal.

Tonight we are promised the resolution of this season’s running crisis: the impending imprisonment of House on drug charges. David Morse’s angry cop, who House also insulted, has been on a mission to teach House a lesson by busting him for his Vicodin addiction. This has been fun to watch since Morse is firmly in the right. None of us really want a Vicodin popping doctor treating us no matter how brilliant they are but you gotta root for House. Brilliant.

Anyway, our bet is that House somehow gets out of this, partly because we think Morse’s case against him is sort of flimsy but mostly because the show is called House. Somehow House treating patients at Princeton General next season seems a lot more likely than treating inmates at Rahway. Of course, Fox could be planning a House/Prison Break cross over event for sweeps.

JC

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