The misadventures of Doctor Gregory House have been over on UK TV for a full week. He’s been grumpy, misunderstood and, to be honest, just an arse. But, thanks largely to Hugh Laurie, he was never anything less than watchable, even when the show itself went a little off the rails.
So how did the final season go? Did they tie everything up in a glorious bow of medical tape?
The eighth year got off to a rocky start when they carelessly lost Lisa Edelstein (aka Doctor Cuddy, boss and love interest) between seasons. Yes, her storyline arguably had its moment the previous year, but a shame she couldn’t even return briefly to be written out, or cameo in the finale.
So, with Cuddy missing and House imprisoned after he smashed up her house, we got a six-or-seven week storyline in which our pill-popping hero found his way out of the institution, then slowly but surely regained his medical licence and sidekicks. And if that sounds familiar, it’s because they did the same thing in season six when he started off in an asylum.
They do introduce some interesting new junior doctors, and a lot of the episodes are fun, but yes, it’s hard to escape the lingering sense of familiarity and inevitable return to the norm throughout the season.
House Vs Cancer
Hugh Laurie has great lines throughout, his friendship with Robert Sean Leonard’s Wilson is still well-pitched, but having explored every avenue for House becoming a better person in the last few years, they seem content to trail on for one more year with entertaining-yet-inconsequential episodes.
It is better TV than the crushingly soapy season seven, but it feels more like a standard medical procedural than a real drama. At least until the last few episodes, when Wilson gets cancer and the angst kicks in hard. Thanks to the hard work done on that relationship, I genuinely cared about the outcome of that storyline, at least.
Which brings us to the finale itself, which has pleasant moments with old characters, but after such a rambling season, still struggles to be a meaningful ending to the whole show. It spends about two thirds of its length trying to do that, before leaving us with a pleasant if rushed climax to the Wilson storyline.
Even an unchallenging season of House is better than many things, and having stuck it out this far, I obviously wanted to see how it ends, even if I didn’t get excited about it until the last few weeks. So, how did you find the final year? Epic climax, or diverting trail-off? Or even worse? Let us know below.