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Alrighty, this was good TV! It flowed, it ebbed, it entertained. House is shaping up to be quality television. Not necessarily heart pumping or laffs-a-minute, but they do good work with a small cast and limited scope. It all comes down to the writing, I think, and the actors get some great lines. But there’s a reason I’m not a television writer – I can’t even think of a good name for the special effect they do where they swoosh into the body to show what gross stuff is making the patient sick. I asked for a name for House’s minions and got Outhouses – who wants to name the special effects inside the body?
So there’s a kid’s talent show in progress, and I’m in panic mode because I can’t handle the sick kids stories, especially when I’ve got PMS. Two adorable but kind of bratty girls are getting helped into their dresses by their mom and complaining about homemade outfits and rich kids who make fun of them. The mom says she’ll just key the mean girl’s dad’s car, so now I know that it’s her that’s sick. Because I’m in love with her now. Sure enough, while the girls are performing she starts screaming in agony, and the Medic-Cam goes into her stomach and shows a vessel getting redder and bigger. Thank god we didn’t actually see it pop; I’d have to take to my bed for the next year.
Back at the hospital Cuddy accosts Stacy about some disciplinary hearing that Chase and House have to go to. I have no idea what it’s in reference to, but later we see they’re doing this episode in reverse. We know from the last episode that Stacy wants nothing to do with House ever again, but Cuddy isn’t in the loop on that yet. Stacy explains that they had a fight and that Cuddy needs to find a different lawyer for House. Cuddy’s response is the apt “40 percent of our lawsuits last year were about House. If you can’t work with him you can’t work here.” I find Cuddy most appealing when she’s being vaguely threatening. It makes me uneasy, but in a hot kind of way.
More back and forth between House and Wilson about the ethics of House reading Stacy’s file. It could be boring since they essentially keep having this discussion, but this is why this show is so good: the guys have set up a field goal made out of paper clips and are concentrating just as hard on the game as on the discussion. I think this series will end with Wilson and House walking off into the sunset with each other.
Stacy interrupts playtime to throw some legal documents in House’s face. She makes him sign them and says there’s nothing he has to know about them. In the next scene, she’s carefully and hilariously going over the same documents with Chase. She genuinely wants to help him, but he’s got that rich boy arrogance in full effect, so she basically goes over a script with him that outlines everything he should say to the committee. And here we have this episode’s main conceit.
Foreman initially saw the patient first, in the clinic while her brother paced and said insulting things while Foreman tried to do his job. He noticed that her eye was inflamed, which is a very bad sign indicating potential blindness. However, since inflamed eye plus stomach and leg pain is weird, House was on it. This is, allegedly, a good thing.
There’s a funny sequence where House is discussing her symptoms while struggling to open his bottle of Vicodin. He throws it Chase for him to open, and we hear Stacy in a voiceover interrupt: “Don’t care about the Vicodin.” The bottle disappears with a little pop. This show is at its best when not taking itself too seriously.
Chase tells Stacy that he was sent off to give the patient an oral and pelvic exam. When Stacy questions why Chase was assigned to Foreman’s patient, the story is rewritten to show that Foreman went to see the patient right as Chase opened the bottle and Vicodin went flying everywhere. Do not mess with House’s fun pills. Chase is punished by being sent off to do the pelvic.
In the exam room, Chase asks the woman if she’s in any pain. She’s lying there with both hands covering her face and only nods in response, practically unable to talk. To all the guys out there: this is a completely accurate representation of the pelvic exam experience. In case you were wondering.
Chase reminds her that it’s better if she talks and tries to distract herself with conversation. This is true. Chase learns that they have the same family history: dad left, mom became a drug addict and died. Stacy appears in the room asking how this is relevant. Hee! Back in her office, she tells Chase not to manipulate the panel with this bonding stuff, but that at the same time this same bonding stuff is why he hasn’t been sued by the patient. Hmm, a small hint. We still don’t know exactly what’s going on here. You know what? These scenes with Stacy and Chase were spliced together from many different takes. Her lipstick is a different shade in every shot.
Chase saw that he gave her a skin test without actually scheduling a follow-up visit, but that she showed up the next day and found him in a lobby. He looked at her arm right there and determined from the pustules that she had a very treatable disease, and told her to make an appointment with the specialist. I believe the saying is “can’t see the forest for the trees,” and Chase is falling victim to that right now, because the women looks like shit. Pale, drawn, fatigued-looking.
Stacy traps Chase into admitting that he gave the patient inferior care. Which would seem to be true. Of course, this story is all one big lie, so it doesn’t really matter anyway. In the replay of this scene, the dialog is basically the same but Chase is pretty rude to her. He also writes out a scrip for antacids, without giving much thought to why her stomach was still hurting. “As little mistakes go, that was a biggie,” says Stacy. Oooh, what happened? The suspense is killing me! Well, kinda.
Wilson is nervous that Stacy is helping Chase and not House; he suspects that Stacy is advising Chase to sell out House. He does a hilariously bad imitation of Chase with a weird Scottish-type accent, but shenanigans aside, makes the good point that while Cameron may love House, Chase loves his job most of all. All of a sudden, House seems to realize what a pickle he’s gotten himself into. He looks genuinely upset and surprised at the idea that Stacy might hate him that much. So he pops a few pills.
Chase is telling Stacy that he called the patient (Kayla) when he realized later that she was trying to tell him about more symptoms. Which is confusing because in the flashback she’s being wheeled in by EMTs, bleeding profusely from the nose. Chase quickly cauterizes a tumor but it perforates, so she has to be operated on. Stacy takes a break at this point and hunts down Cameron. Not literally. Although that would be cool. Not a very fair fight though. Stacy is a full-fledged cougar. Cameron is barely a tabby.
Cameron thinks Chase made a mistake, could happen to anybody, etc. Stacy says she’s biased because she slept with Chase. Ooh, that got around quickly! Foreman hasn’t had the pleasure of crazy outback-kangaroo-Crocodile Dundee sex, so he trash talks Chase, telling Stacy that Chase hates all his patients. He does make the interesting point that it’s probably just a front to be more like House.
Stacy finally realizes that she going to have to talk to the man himself. So she interrupts him in the clinic, where they have this confidential discussion in front of a patient. I think House kind of gets off on that. Stacy’s wearing a different lipstick again, I might add.
House retells the story with a different ending. After Kayla was taken to the OR, House bitched Chase out for not asking her is she had diarrhea, which is pretty standard doctorin’ question. House then turns directly to the camera and says that he made some comments he doesn’t want to repeat. I’m such a nerd that I actually got excited when I thought House was talking to me.
After Kayla’s surgery, Cameron and Chase tell her brother that she’s going to need a liver transplant. He offers to do it, and mentions the black market, which sets Cameron off on a righteous rant (at least one per episode!), which is thankfully stopped by Kayla yelling in pain. That sounded mean. Anyway, she has a clot, which means more surgery. In Cuddy’s office, Chase is arguing for giving Kayla a transplant, but Cuddy refuses because Kayla’s too sick. Ironic, no?
I can’t concentrate. Cuddy is smokin’ hot in that outfit. Just when I’m getting over it, they treat us to this insane shot of Cuddy’s cleavage. In case you didn’t know, Cuddy is a fox! I repeat, CUDDY IS A FOX! Jeez, we get it.
Somehow House convinces Cuddy to put Kayla at the top of this list. I don’t know how, I was distracted by all the boobies. Unfortunately, she’s a very rare blood type. Her brother’s on top of things, though. He bribed someone to test him quickly, so already has all the paperwork that says he’s a good match. Then House gets a doctor to to perform the transplant by kissing his ass. That’s what Chase believes, but it’s not actually what happened. First House offered the surgeon money, which didn’t really work because the doctor makes $600,000 a year. So House says he’ll tell the surgeon’s wife about how much he cheats on her. There, that’ll do it!
Of course House told the wife anyway, because he has no self control. This leads to more fighting about how House violated Stacy’s trust. He should just hook it up with Cuddy and get over it already.
The transplant surgery went fine, and for two months Kayla was fine too. When she came back for a checkup, though, she had a fever, which is something her medications should have blocked. In the conference room, Chase keeps insisting it’s only strep, even though the others doctors believe she’s rejecting the liver. Chase is so desperate for that not to be true. He’s panic here is really believable. After all his fuck ups, he wants this to end well.
Kayla’s brother comes in, pissed that House hasn’t seen Kayla yet. He’s worried that she has hepatitis, and mentions some treatment plans. That is pretty specific knowledge for a layperson. House checks out the guy’s tattoos and figures out that he has hepatitis, and paid off the tester not just for speed, but to say that he was disease-free. Man, he feels bad now, but even worse when House tells him he probably caused cancer in his sister.
As Chase explains this to Stacy, she can’t hide how impressed she is with House’s intuition and intelligence. It’s also good for the case that the brother lied, which means they aren’t culpable. Just then they get a page from Cuddy. The family has decided to sue the hospital and Chase personally for punitive damages, to the tune of $10 million. Now that we’re up to speed, we know that the brother is fine (besides the pre-existing hepatitis) but Kayla has cancer. The ladies are surprised that Chase is being sued, and Stacy asks what he’s still hiding. Eh, he probably slept with Kayla.
Well, it turns out it’s not that sexy. Kayla’s brother found a black market donor in Mexico and they were about to go, but Chase convinced them not to. I mean, it is a really bad idea. Kayla’s brother really wants to go, but of course that’s because he thinks he killed his sister. She argues that he actually gave her more time, plus she got to save his life since his cancer was discovered through her.
Kayla died a week later, and her brother took the kids. On a follow-up appointment with Chase, he mentions that they’re going to have to move to a cheaper place since he’s on disability. It looked to me like he was maybe trying to shake down Chase for money, but Chase’s response is really weird. He tells the guy that he was hungover the day he misdiagnosed Kayla, and didn’t give a shit about her because he just wanted to go home. Naturally, her brother gets just a bit pissed at this. The thing is, Chase is obviously (to us) lying, and purposefully trying to get sued. But they’ve given us many indications that Chase is very wealthy. If he felt that bad, why wouldn’t he just give the guy some money? Very odd.
There is some truth to Chase’s confession, however. He was distracted when Kayla came in. He had just been told that his father had just died. House knew that Chase’s father was sick, even though Chase didn’t, and figured out that his father’s death was the cause of his distraction.
Somewhat abruptly, Stacy is telling House that she still has feelings for him. I guess they had to work that in somehow, since she’s only a guest star. I think the writers are working up to the moment when she realizes she has to leave because she’s still completely in love with House.
Unsurprisingly, Chase is exonerated of everything, and just has to serve a week’s suspension and have a note put in his file. Not too bad, really. On the other hand, House will have to be supervised for a month by another doctor. This doesn’t seem so bad, until you think about how humiliating that would be for a doctor like House, who’s supposed to be the very top of his field.
I thought the supervisor would be Cuddy, which could lead to all sorts of sexy situations. But no, looks like Foreman is House’s new boss. I’m actually not sure how this is possible, since I thought the Outhouses were “just” residents and didn’t have that sort of seniority. But should set up some interesting plotlines. Next week: Cynthia Nixon guest stars!