Virgin's Guide to Burning Man

A Virgin's Guide to Burning Man can be found here.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

House, Can You Give Us Something Different?

The Husband and I don't have TV. I mean, we own a TV, but we don't watch television. We watch only movies because cable is a lot of money for a heck of a lot of dreck. We used to have it, but mostly our time just got sucked away into a vapid nothingness, and we'd turn to each other at the end of the night and wonder why we just wasted a whole evening.

So now, it's just movies for us, and the glory that is Hulu and Netflix for the few shows that are actually worth watching. We Netflixed the entire Sopranos series, and now we are working our way through House, M.D.

I love House. I adore the show, with its snappy banter and acerbic wit. And yes, it is formulaic. After about 5 episodes, you get the gist that some medical mystery occurs, House has to be persuaded to take it, the first three or four tries only make the problem worse, and the patient is now not only peeing blood, he or she is also losing their skin in huge swaths, having a seizure, and their bones are disintegrating. Meanwhile House is busy brow-beating his team, abusing Wilson, and sexually harassing Cuddy. But then, at the last minute, a random conversation leads to a flash of insight and House suddenly solves the mystery. Meanwhile the patient (and family) hates his guts, but can't help being grateful that House saved their life. You want to hate House for his lack of morals or sensitivity, but you can't really, because you know he serves a higher calling than social grace. And he's damn funny as he does it; getting away with stuff you sometimes wish you could say, though you know you'll never have the cajones to.

And I'm okay with the formula, even if it is so predictable, because I watch the show for said banter and wit, and because I love House as a character. But there is one little micro-formula that drives me batty.

At the beginning of each episode, the medical mystery is introduced. We follow some unknown character until disaster strikes and they start bleeding out of their eyeballs. But quite often, disaster strikes on one character, another character rushes to save them and then suddenly a whole new disaster strikes the hero. The first character ends up just fine, but it's the hero who suffers from the medical mystery. Fascinating plot twist, n'est-ce pas? Not when it happens EVERY SINGLE TIME.

So writers of House, M.D., I love you. But please...when it comes to this little mini-plot move...can you mix it up a bit?

ADDENDUM: As I mentioned, we watch House on a combination of Hulu (most recent episodes) and Netflix (prior episodes we missed), so this does mean we're rather behind the times. Having just now seen Season 5's finale, I must admit this post came at a somewhat inauspicious time. It was in response to episodes in season 3. Meanwhile, the end of season 5 came as quite a shock. Especially to my little romantic heart beating to the tune of the House-Cuddy relationship. So for any readers who wondered what the heck I could be blathering about, I apologize for the delayed reaction. :)

(House, MD promotional image taken from:

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