HOUSE: House Divided - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

HOUSE: House Divided

April 28, 2009 by  

Like many long running dramas, House has an audience that eagerly awaits interesting plot developments and payoffs to long term storylines. Aside from taking a few baby steps toward Dr. House’s inevitable breakdown, this week provided little fodder for viewers who like to put those complicated puzzle pieces together. Instead, the House team continued on the lighthearted course that was charted following Kutner’s death, and gave us a carnival-style bonanza of playful material.

Writers Matthew V. Lewis and Liz Friedman crafted a script that called on Princeton Plainsboro’s finest physicians to embrace their wildest inhibitions, and explore territory that is not often explored on medical programs, namely laughter and smiles.

For my money, the funniest image of this television season arrived in the form of Hugh Laurie dancing to Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power.” The sunglasses, the boombox resting perfectly on his shoulder, the confident strut, what more could you want? After cheering up his patient, and uncovering a new symptom in the process, the pill popping rapper to be unleashed a few more of his greatest hits.

  • Adding the “Broken Cowboy” to the list of required skills for Chase’s strippers
  • “That’s the one that got me hooked up with Madoff”
  • Homemade Booze Ice Cream, which sounds like a great party favor
  • “Cuddy wants to avoid a lawsuit…and win an NAACP award”
  • Practicing his bartending skills, all while channeling Tom Cruise from “Cocktail”
  • “BY THE POWER OF GREYSKULL!” As a He-Man junkie, I was delighted
  • Holding Chase’s bachelor party in Wilson’s apartment, without consent

With an episode to fill, and little plot to advance, the supporting cast simply played along. From Foreteen’s scouting trip to the local adult entertainment center to Chase’s creation of an Immigration angle to facilitate his attendance at the bachelor party, the entire team appeared to be having the time of their lives shaping this episode.

If you are a New England Patriots fan, please take note. All-Pro Quarterback Tom Brady’s spitting image played Seth, the mystery patient of the week. His name is Ryan Lane, a deaf actor who has previously appeared on CBS’ “Cold Case” and as the title character in the film, “Dummy Hoy: A Deaf Hero.” Though he may not have endeared himself to fans of other AFC East teams, Lane was a rare addition to the House archives: a patient that was compelling and memorable. Seth’s exchanges with his Mom, played by veteran TV actress Clare Carey, were played poignantly and without pretense. Ms. Carey, best known to us from her days as Craig T. Nelson’s daughter on ABC’s “Coach,” was a marvel to watch as House dissected her true intentions. Put into her character’s shoes, wouldn’t you want your son to hear you say his name? In an episode full of raucous misbehavior, the moments between mother and son were truly touching.

Hugh Laurie took us inside the darkest recesses of House’s soul as he unraveled the mystery of Amber’s reappearance. Since we have the benefit of hindsight, we know that she is not a symptom of insomnia. The battle for House’s head appears to be the story to watch over the final two episodes. At this point, there are as many possible explanations as there are incorrect diagnoses in an average hour of House. I am hesitant to throw out a theory, as I do not have access to a Physicians’ Desk Reference.

Fun was the name of the game this week, so there is very little ground left to cover. Since I did not watch House until covering this season for GMMR, I am withholding judgment on Anne Dudek’s performance. I am curious to know whether her return is welcomed by the GMMR community, which has a legion of longtime House fans in its midst. At this point, Dudek appears to be embracing her former nickname, and House may have caught on to the duality of those tendencies within himself. Stay tuned.

What do you think Amber’s presence means for House? Is our favorite doctor about to be hospitalized with Wilson’s brother? Are you pleased with the playful direction of the show? Does anyone else have a craving for caramel sundaes? There’s much to discuss, and I’m looking forward to reading your comments!

How does Erik combat writer’s block? He indulges in Adam Carolla’s new daily podcast at and reads Bill Simmons’ columns on The GMMR House and Parks & Recreation dude is an active participant in the economic recession, and is working on the second draft of his screenplay, “Pirates of the Indian Ocean: We’ll Trade Jack Sparrow for $10,000,000″. Oh, and he wishes that he knew Kung Fu like Chuck!


7 Responses to “HOUSE: House Divided”

  1. robertas on April 29th, 2009 1:34 pm


    oh its so nice to catch up – my laptop was in the shop (and it took all of my bookmarks with it 🙂 Lazy, lazy blond!

    Anyhow – like you I am really hesitant but not to throw a theory out rather to comment at all 🙂 All this “I see dead people” shtick oh heavens why in the world would they go down that road? Then again writers usually did (operative word being did) have fantastic stuff up their sleeves for House season finales. Given this season however I’ll refrain from commenting until I see where it goes. And I thought CTB was amusing… when she was alive. To bring her back like this – well all I will say is Denny 🙂

    But on a related note, I was in London last week for a press thingy with Stephen Fry. And he did talk about House and Hugh 🙂 He said they did discuss him making an appearance but due to his schedule it was not doable so far (so he did Bones appearance instead). And it seems they cannot decide if his role should involve him being a better diagnostician, but much, much nicer personality (just so to annoy House). Or if they should go down the route of him being much crueler, ruder and nastier then House. I think I would love to see the latter version – you know just for kicks 🙂 Although who could be more rude then House, is it even possible? 🙂

  2. Erik on April 30th, 2009 1:07 pm

    robertas: One of the reasons that I withheld judgment about Amber’s return, and Anne Dudek’s contributions to the episode, was a belief that the House creative team has a satisfying end game in mind. If they do not, and your fears of a Grey’s Anatomy-level debacle come to fruition, this may be an episode that is ultimately forgettable aside from the moments of levity.

  3. geebs on May 3rd, 2009 1:27 pm

    Its actually weird that I found this episode much more darker in spite of the light fun floating around it.
    I am guessing we are up for a huge House-centered (as is the case with all finales) episode probably left on the brink of a complete House breakdown (in a mental asylum).

    The capping of the episode where House wakes up to see Amber again, was really really ominous for me. Don’t know if others felt the same way.

    I see a deep disturbing rumble on its way up. I might be just paranoid.

  4. Erik on May 4th, 2009 1:52 am

    geebs: With House suffering from something more sinister than a headache or an inability to sleep, there were reasons to look at this episode from a more ominous perspective. In particular, House’s questioning of his motivation for hiring the stripper with the dangerous body butter, Karamel, was a hint of more introspection to come.

    Looking back, it seems that we’ve been riding an emotional roller coaster, with the writers attempting to lift our spirits with lighter fare since Kutner’s death, before plunging into the dark recesses of House’s neurosis over the next two weeks.

    Thanks for continuing to share your thoughts each week, and I hope you enjoy the next episode, “Under My Skin.”

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