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House Season 5 Episode 19: Locked In

Tonight’s House was an attempt to bring a new perspective to the series.  FOX even went out of their way to mention in the press release that this episode was shot primarily from the perspective of the patient.

In addition to the patient view, I noticed something different as soon as the episode began.  As far as I can remember, an episode of House has never started with House himself in the presence of the would-be patient.  In fact, I admit I was more than a little disappointed when the episode didn’t begin with a surprise stroke, projectile vomiting, or even an unexpected fainting.  All the same, it was interesting to see House’s opinion immediately dismissed by the other doctor, even if none of us believed for a moment that House wouldn’t ultimately get his way.

As I often am these days, I was using my laptop while watching this episode.  Normally I try not to get to engrossed in the Interwebs while a show is on, specifically with House since I enjoy it so much.  Tonight though, after the first five minutes of blurry-shaky patient cam, I found myself looking away more than normal, just so I could look at a screen that was properly focused.

Like Wilson, I had immediately assumed that House had purposely wrecked his motorcycle simply to score some Vicodin, especially when he noticed that the patient hadn’t done anything to stop his own bicycle accident.  I thought this was supposed to be a parallel with House’s accident, meaning he hadn’t done anything to stop himself from crashing.  All this diversion did was remind me why House was the first show that taught me not to be overly confident with my own assumptions about the plot.

Despite my lack of enthusiasm for the gimmicky camera angle, I thought Mos Def did a good job in a role where the majority of the acting had to be done through voice alone.  Unfortunately, his performance just wasn’t enough to save this episode.  It doesn’t say much for the story when the best part of the episode was the reveal during the last few minutes that Wilson had discovered that House is seeing a psychiatrist.  It’s not often that we see House get emotional, but he was extremely agitated at Wilson’s “invasion of privacy,” despite the obvious hypocrisy this displays considering he once went so far as having Wilson followed by a private investigator.

As I said, tonight’s episode was an attempt at a new perspective.  If we’re lucky, the creators will realize the attempt was a failure and go back to the formula that has proved successful for the last five seasons.  At best, this episode was a 42 minute teaser for next week, when we get to find out more about House’s visits to the head shrinker.

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March 30, 2009 - Posted by | Drama, Television | , , , ,

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