HOUSE: "Lucky Thirteen"...or Thirteen Gets Lucky - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

HOUSE: “Lucky Thirteen”…or Thirteen Gets Lucky

October 22, 2008 by  

It looks like I jumped the gun by opening last week’s recap with simply, “Wow.” As tonight’s episode began with Olivia Wilde in a half naked lesbian tryst, my first thought (well, maybe not my first) was how to avoid using the “W” word again. Instead, I offer a meager attempt at insightful television criticism. Active television fans often read stories of showrunners or producers fighting with network suits over how to produce marketable television. For a show like Private Practice, the tension between art and finance led to the recasting of a key role from the show’s pilot. In the case of GMMR favorite Friday Night Lights, the creative process gave way to sexier, seedier plots to rope in a more desirable demographic. Tonight’s installment of House appears to be the best of both worlds, combining an intricate plot with the tantalizing beauty of Thirteen, played by Ms. Wilde. The result? A worthy successor to last week’s standout chapter in the House saga.

In case anyone missed it, here you go…

Recently, Thirteen’s story arc had taken a backseat to the House/Wilson “bromance,” the introduction of Lucas Douglas, Private Investigator, and even Dr. Taub’s marital woes. Living with the diagnosis of Huntington’s Chorea has taken a toll on the young doctor, and her coping mechanisms appear to be drugs and anonymous hookups. Tonight’s medical mystery involved a patient listed in the credits as “Woman with Thirteen,” a one night stand who fell ill at 3am. The names given to supporting characters are usually insignificant, often sharing the surnames of crew members, charity auction winners, or favorite literary characters of the writing staff. The use of anonymity with this patient helped tell Thirteen’s story, both in explaining the circumstances surrounding their encounter and in highlighting Thirteen’s inability to forge intimate relationships because of her disease. Keep your eyes open for Thirteen to overcome some of those issues with the help of a co-worker in the near future. If you want to know more go hunting because it’s out there (but leave this a spoiler free zone.)

Due to her history on “The O.C.” and a winning ticket in the genetic lottery, it would be easy to try and dismiss Olivia Wilde as eye candy to attract younger viewers. Instead, Wilde has delivered the goods in shaping Thirteen in a fuller, more authentic way. Between the season premiere and tonight’s episode, Wilde has broken free from the conventional method by which a character under these circumstances is played. Instead of yielding to melodrama or unrealistic optimism, Thirteen has been shown as strong, flawed, supportive, impulsive, dominant, and emotionally distant. All of those adjectives fit the role as written, yet none of them would ring true without Wilde’s talent.

Did I mention the funny? At the risk of offending members of the GMMR community who love Zach Braff, I believe that “Lucky Thirteen” contained more LOL moments than any episode of Scrubs from the past three seasons. I cannot do justice to the setups, other than to implore you to download the episode from iTunes or stream it at beginning next Wednesday. Instead, I will sprinkle these three House zingers, plus a bonus exchange between House & Lucas for your perusal, with the hope that any other favorite lines will show up in the comments section.

  • “Penthouse Forum meets medical mystery. Maybe there is a God!”
  • “Huge, throbbing…diagnostic skills”
  • “Another life saved by girl on girl action”
  • House: “Wilson needs to be saved.”
    Lucas: “From you or the ho?”

Good times were had by all, and it was Wilson who had the last laugh after foiling House’s investigation into his fictional girlfriend. I would say that the “bromance” is alive and well. When these two ever get around to making honest men of one another, count me in for a set of steak knives or butter dishes on their registry.

As the episode closed, the Pandora’s Box of Cuddy’s pending adoption was opened, and a slew of potential storylines have emerged as we approach November sweeps.

Thank goodness for House, Chuck, and The Office this year. If I could just get the Survivor team to entertain me this consistently, I could even get over the Red Sox losing to the Rays.

There is much to be discussed, and so many of you to hear from. If you are a fan of office romances, are you waiting for your fill of House and Cuddy, or would you prefer to see Thirteen find love in the hospital? Did anyone figure out that Wilson was duping House and Lucas? Am I the only one who cannot wait for Wilson and Lucas to meet in person? What did you think of Thirteen’s encounter tonight? Did it detract from what you like about the show, or did it help you keep your significant other from turning the channel? Let’s chat about it, shall we?

— posted by Erik

How does Erik stay grounded from his luxurious life as a substitute teacher? He keeps it real with ALF DVDs & Fantasy Football. On weekends, the GMMR HOUSE & SURVIVOR guru spends quiet time imploring the TV gods to bring back Sports Night & Ed. Erik resides in South Florida and spends his summers following Dave Matthews Band.

Filed under House


5 Responses to “HOUSE: “Lucky Thirteen”…or Thirteen Gets Lucky”

  1. maura on October 22nd, 2008 10:33 am

    This episode was fantastic. We even got a little Chase and Cameron in there. I loved the scene with Foreman asking for some straight talk from Chase, deeply insulted that he could be considered boring. Thirteen’s behavior following her diagnosis is so anti-Grey’s Anatomy (read: realistic). Olivia Wilde absolutely shined in this episode. And I have never really seen the House/Cuddy romantic appeal (or really picked up on strong cues), but Hugh Laurie single-handedly turned that around for me with his facial expression at the news of her adoption. He was brilliant.

  2. Kimber on October 22nd, 2008 2:18 pm

    Wow. There, I said it too. That’s about the only word on my mind within the opening of the show. Wow, wowie, wow wow. I, for one, was living for the day when we would get a “glimpse” into Thirteen’s personal life. Especially after House semi-outted her as a bisexual last season. What last night’s episode revealed … awesome.

    And Olivia Wilde is just about the best thing EVER. She’s incredibly gorgeous (OMG those eyes!), and she is an incredible actress and had just brought so much to the role of Thirteen. I felt really, really sad for her last night, and for what she must be feeling and going through. Also for the fact that her “tryst” was revealed not to be terminal, and that she wouldn’t have a person to “die with” afterall. I’m excited to see where this storyline goes next.

    I was a big House/Cuddy shipper in the last few seasons, but kind of gave up on it. Having said that, next week’s episode looks AMAZING, and I cannot wait.

  3. Erik on October 22nd, 2008 10:32 pm

    If you would like the full scoop on some upcoming storylines, you can catch EW’s resident TV guru interviewing House’s Executive Producer here:

    Of course, these are for your eyes only, so please keep the comment sections spoiler free, so that we can have an open discussion and people won’t hesitate to participate.

  4. Ater on April 20th, 2009 4:26 am

    I love Olivia Wilde!!!!!! She is so so so so beautiful!!! and thirteen is so so mysterious and sad…and beautiful…I love her!!!!!!!!!

  5. jones on June 5th, 2009 9:45 am

    I understand that this is only a review of a tvv series but the line ‘winning ticket in the genetic lottery’ is a little inconsiderate. Huntingdons is a terrible disease with a 50/50 chance of inheriting it. Not good odds, and I feel that people diagnosed with the disease do not feel like they have won anything.