Tuesday, September 29, 2009

House “Epic Fail” Epic Boredom

Photo from Fox

Greg House (Hugh Laurie) is trying to get his life back together after his stint in rehab in last night’s episode of House (Fox), “Epic Fail.” There was nothing particularly memorable in this episode, despite the fact that a lot had happened. After last week’s episode (“Broken”), which was full of angst and drama, “Epic Fail” almost seemed to drag. Maybe part of my problem is that so much time was spent on Foreman (Omar Epps) and “Thirteen” (Olivia Wilde), a couple that seems to have no real chemistry, well, except now maybe the kind of chemistry that blows up.

What happened in this episode? Here’s a list of events:

1. House quits because he doesn’t want to come back to the place that he thinks drove him deeper into drug use. He undergoes more therapy with Dr. Darryl Nolan (Andre Braugher) who tells him to find a hobby to take his mind off the pain in his leg. House tags along with Dr. Wilson’s (Robert Sean Leonard) in his cooking class. As driven as he is, and now even more so to distract him from pain, House becomes a great cook but he is almost obsessive about it. But the pain is still there, so House, currently living with Wilson, goes back to his old place and finds a bottle of pills hidden in a shoe. Doe he take some? We don’t know, bit his pain is suddenly gone. Compounding the matter is when Wilson rigs up the toilet so he can capture some of House’s urine to test for drugs, and Wilson is foiled when he and Cuddy find that House is on to them and substitutes dog pee. (We don’t want to know how he got dog pee.) Nolan tells him maybe he needs his job at the hospital, telling House “The only thing worse for you than going back to diagnostic medicine is not going back." As if anyone really expected House would stay away.

2. Foreman begs Cuddy to let him take House’s position as head of diagnostics, and Taub (Peter Jacobson) and Taub now report to him. But Taub quits, saying he came there to work for House. My guess is once House comes back, Taub will want to un-quit.

3. Foreman and Thirteen work on the annoying patient of the week, who is admitted into the hospital because his hands burn and because he heard the genius House works there. Yes, sure, let’s give this guy special attention for a non life-threatening illness. But since House isn’t there, Foreman, Thirteen and Taub plunder through the case, with the patient making matters worse by getting people from the internet involved. After the doctors ridicule people getting and giving medical advice over the internet, it turns out the Thirteen gets the real diagnosis from someone who submitted their diagnosis on the internet. We find out later that this person was Greg House. No surprise here. By the way, the patient had Fabry disease, and I found that I could care less.

4. Foreman and Thirteen, now that the relationship is boss and subordinate, have a little friction develop between them. (Snore.) They seem to patch things up and then Foreman surprises Thirteen when he fires her to save their relationship. Yeah, now that relationship is going to work (note sarcasm).

5. Somewhere in this episode we see Cameron (Jennifer Morrison) and Chase (Jesse Spencer); two characters that used to be far more interesting but have been woefully underused in the last few seasons. Since it is no secret now that Morrison will be leaving the show part way through the season, I think this series should seriously consider adding another doctor who actually has some spark because, outside of House and Wilson, nobody has it right now. Too bad they killed off Amber (Anne Dudek).

6. Comic relief was when Dr. Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) came to visit House at Wilson’s and an Asian woman speaking Chinese (I think) comments that Cuddy dresses like a whore. She said what I and many other fans have been thinking for the past few years. I was nice to have that validated.

While this episode wasn’t horrible, it offered no drama and as a result, I failed to care about any of the characters, with the exception of House. I think that fans all know that Foreman will never be a great diagnostician like House and it is getting rather repetitive seeing Foreman not measure up every chance he gets. But I am not sure that Foreman's plight is the “Epic Fail” to which this episode refers. I wonder if House has fallen off the wagon. I would like to think that he hasn’t, but honestly, this failure of Foreman’s can hardly be considered epic. Hopefully once House gets back into the swing of things, things will get back to normal for him. But what is normal for House may not be what is good for House, and this could spell trouble.

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1 comment:

gibbs4me said...

I agree, I agree! I couldn't even pay attention to the whole episode, because it was so boring. Blah....

Rx for a bleary, dreary tv show that needs medication: bring back the original team instead of having them lurking about in the hospital (Cameron in the ER/clinic? Really?) (Chase doing some kind of routine-nothing-really-surgical-procedures, just waiting for House to need him, always available at his beck and call? Really?)

Weren't these people chosen to be House's team partly because of their skills in their medical specialty? Why is a neurology expert trailing along being part of a team (that he is not really part of?)

I'm sorry, even my normally accepting nature is strained by this scenario. No hospital would be willing to pay the salaries of all these people while their Team Leader spirals out of control on drugs.

Suspension of belief is one thing, but mine is stretched to beyond believing into the realm of yawning.

And Cuddy needs to dress like a hospital administrator and not a --um, whatever she is dressing like....

House producers: go back to the beginning and see what you did right or we will sleep through the dying of your show!!!!