Tuesday, October 5, 2010

House “Unwritten” Recap & Review

Photo from Fox

Finally, a decent episode of House(Fox), one that had a patient of the week that was actually interesting. I have to admit, though, that I was shocked at how old Amy Irving looked (and the blond frizzy hair didn’t do much to help, either). Irving played Alice Tanner, a famous author of a kids’ book series about a young detective named Jack Cannon. When she finishes her book, she talks to the imaginary Cannon, locks her final manuscript in the safe, and then tries to shoot herself. She manages to have a seizure, which causes her to miss.

She finds herself in Princeton Plainsboro Teaching Hospital and Dr. Greg House (Hugh Laurie) happens to be a fanboy. He takes an interest in her case. While he works the case, he bemoans to his pal Dr. James Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) that he is not sure that he and Cuddy have enough in common to keep the relationship going. I, on the other hand, am more worried that the House/Cuddy storyline hasn’t already worn out its welcome with viewers. It seems that House is becoming a little too nice and is losing his edginess the more he worries about his relationship. Is his changing for the better for himself, and for the worse for the show?

Alice also doesn’t seem to be telling anyone the truth about anything and still wants to die. She doesn’t tell them she has screws in her leg from a past break in her leg, and the screws are ripped out of her body as she nears the MRI. She says the broken leg was from a skiing accident. She also takes House up on an offer to kill herself with an injection, and all it does is put her to sleep and give them another reason to extend her psych hold.

While working the case, House also tries to reconstruct Alice’s last chapter by taking her typewriter ribbon and, with the help of Wilson’s girlfriend Sam (Cynthia Watros), uses the MRI to get the details on how the Jack Cannon books ends. (That MRI seems more like a toy to House.) When he finds out the book ends as a cliffhanger, he ramps up his efforts to save the author. While his team of doctors – who seem to be slow to respond to House this episode – work on the case, House continue to work his relationship with Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein). We lose several minutes of an otherwise good patient story when House, Cuddy, Wilson, and Sam head off to an indoor go cart racing facility where the four of them race each other. When Cuddy complains of hurting her neck during the process, House gets an epiphany and realizes that Alice didn’t break her leg in a skiing accident, it was a car accident. He also discovers that Alice Tanner is a pen name; her real name is Helen and her son was killed in that car accident. Alice blames herself for letting her son take the wheel that day, even though he only had a learners permit. But, since everybody lies, House also lies and tells Alice that her son really had a brain aneurysm and that is what caused the accident, and he would have died whether he was in the car or not. This gives Alice the will to live and she allows the team to operate on a cyst that formed after her car accident that has been growing and pressing on her spinal column, causing all her symptoms.

As Alice recovers, House seems upset that Alice will leave the book ending as is, and she now wants to write for adults. She thinks each reader can decide whatever fate they want for Jack. Somehow, upon hearing this, I wonder if this is what will happen for House when the series comes to an end – he will just go on living with no real end to his story, and the viewers can decide. If the show has more episodes like this, House will be around for a lot longer. But, if they continue to keep House with Cuddy and House loses his edginess, that end may comne sooner!

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Anonymous said...

You list all the actors names except for "Jack's" - who is the young man playing the part of Jack Cannon? He looks very familiar - maybe from a movie with Bruce Willis??

I Like to Watch TV said...

I didn't have the actor's name at the time but have since found it - it's John Bain.