‘House’ 8.01 Recap: “Doctors Can Be Degenerates Too”

Dr. Gregory House left off last season by driving his car straight through Cuddy’s dining room and then fleeing the country. That Dr. House, what a character!

One thing I admire about ‘House’ is that the show actually deals with consequences to its characters’ actions. That’s one of the reasons I became so disillusioned with ‘The Office’. Nothing Michael Scott did, no matter how bad, ever got him fired.

‘House’, on the other hand, has storylines and episodes that always fit within the larger picture of character development. For instance, Chase intentionally killed a genocidal maniac in Season Six, a choice that has haunted him ever since. That decision eventually ended his marriage. House has gone through rehab, and now finds himself in prison.

When House drove the car into Cuddy’s home in the Season Seven finale, I sat there a little mad. How could he do something like this? I kept wondering exactly how the show was going to write him back into the hospital environment the next season. How could the character correct something so atrocious?

In ‘Twenty Vicodin’, House has spent quite a bit of time in prison and is now close to getting parole. That’s where the season picks up. He’s done his time and is about to get out.

When House crashed the car through the wall, I wondered how he could know that Cuddy’s kid wouldn’t be there. Was this a plot hole in the finale? One line of dialogue in the season premiere explains it away. House says that he knew the girl wouldn’t be there because she always went to Grandma’s on Sunday. This needed to be explained because House, no matter how crazy he is, wouldn’t have put a child in danger. Even though it seems like a little bit of a cop-out, I still appreciate the explanation.

Since House is getting close to leaving prison, a few inmates want something from him. Most notably, the head of the white supremacists wants an exit tax of 20 pain pills before House leaves. House does what he can, trying to keep a pill here and there from the amount that he’s allotted each day for his leg pain.

A new character is introduced. Filling in the ridiculously good-looking female quotient that has become a ‘House’ staple is Odette Annable (aka Odette Yustman), who plays prison doctor Dr. Jessica Adams. House reads her, like he does everyone, and soon has her believing in his type of off-the-wall medical practices. An inmate has come down with a mysterious disease, and House tries to help Dr. Adams to diagnose the illness before he dies.

Dr. Adams is sure to be a main character, and will probably be hired by House whenever he gets around to returning to the hospital. Most of this episode, House spends time discussing how he’s never going back to medicine, but we know that’s not true. Especially after the preview for next week’s episode which shows Foreman coming to House, getting him out of prison for a case, and everything returning to the formulaic normalcy of the show.

The big thing to keep an eye on for the rest of the season is how House is received by Cuddy and Wilson. His two closest friends are sure to hate his guts right now. Wilson may come around, but Cuddy is going to be furious. Whatever happens, it’s good to have the ornery medical genius back.

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