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Monday, April 27, 2009

House MD Season 5 Episode 22 Recap

House Divided

As tonights episode of House MD opens, we see a 14 year old deaf wrestler getting ready for a wrestling match. As the match continues, the wrestler is crippled by the sound of loud explosions in his ears. He falls to the mat, grabbing his ears and screaming in agony.

We then see House talking to Amber, who is dead. The alarm goes off and she tells him it's time to wake up. This makes it seem like he was only having a dream. House has been taking sleeping pills and it turns out he sees Amber even when he is wide awake. House is hallucinating, which calls into question just how much of what is going on can be trusted by the viewer.

The wrestler has been deaf since the age of 4 as a complication of meningitis. House suggests that he had a seizure, and orders testing for seizures. Meanwhile, Wilson and Cameron are acting a little strange. Amber asks House why Wilson closed a file folder when he showed up, and why is Wilson so eager to just write House a prescription and be rid of him. It turns out they are planning a bachelor party for Chase.

While Thirteen and Foreman are testing the patient, he loses vision. While talking with Amber, she suggests that House play some music for the patient. Then we see House all pimped out with a boombox blasting Public Enemy's "Fight the Power." Based on the patient's response, House says there is yet another new symptom: Neuropathy.

Foreman suggests that their could be raised ICP levels causing the symptoms. First House shoots his idea down, but when Amber says he is right, House says Foreman is right. Maybe his deafness was not a complication of Meningitis, but a result of MF2 cancer.

Taub explains to the patient that MF2 cancer is a slow progressing cancer, and entirely treatable, but it would cure the deafness. Here's the ethical dilemma. The patient wants to stay deaf. Although tests show slightly elevated ICP levels, there seems to be no indication of cancer.

Meanwhile, Hadley wants in on the bachelor party. House says no. It's for men only. She says if she gets drunk enough she may make out with the stripper, or become one. "Sold!" House/Amber proclaims.

House shows Wilson some scans to compare. 3 year ago vs today. What's different. Wilson says the bending of the ventricle was not there 3 years ago, which does indeed indicate MF2. But they're going to need a brain biopsy.

As Chase prepares to do the biopsy, House discusses a stripper named Karmel with Amber. Then He argues with Chase over giving the patient cochlear implants during the biopsy. After surgery, we see the patient hearing all sorts of noises. His mother is angry and demands the implants be removed. House observes via Amber that the mother does not seem genuinely angry and tells her that she actually wants her son to hear again.

Cuddy argues the ethics of stripping the patient of his deafness and house says that the patient is opting to be handicapped, and the mother is an idiot. House is no longer in charge, Foreman is. Foreman orders tests for Eppstein_Barr.

The Patient wants the implants removed, but his mom would like him to keep them. She says his name, and he asks is that his name? Seth. They hug, and he just bursts forth with great volumes of pee as Taub enters the room.

Next we see House with Hadley, Foreman, Taub, and Amber. They are trying ice cream that turns out to be alcoholic ice cream. Then suddenly, everyone but House and Amber go gray. House asks what just happened. Meanwhile the deaf boy is telling his girlfriend he doesn't want to hear, but she says it's wonderful that he can hear now.

Foreman and House continue to argue over who is in charge, and House says Cuddy doesn't really want you in charge. She just wants to avoid a lawsuit. Then we see that the patient has ripped out his implants. Amber says "we just saved his life." Arrhythmia, house says. Another new symptom.

We see the team gathered, but Amber holds up a lighter. House clears the team of the room. Then we see him practicing setting liquor on fire for the bachelor party. He winds up setting the lab on fire, including a body for autopsy. Amber asks what all the new symptoms have in common, and House says it's heat.

Now, at the bachelor party, House is doing his trick of lighting the drinks on fire. Wilson comes in and yells "House! This is my apartment." House got Wilson to attend after all by hosting it at Wilsons.

While House and Amber sit in the bathtub thinking about the case, Chase goes to do a body shot off of Karmel, the stripper. He licks her and goes into anaphylactic shock from her strawberry body butter. House wonders why, if Amber is just a part of his own brain, would Amber suggest to use Karmel, knowing that she uses strawberry body butter, and knowing that Chase is allergic to strawberries. He doesn't want Cameron, but Amber says he's not a big fan of other people's happiness either.

House gets a call that the patient is getting worse. He has lung failure and does not have MS. They were wrong, but the team is all drunk. Cuddy calls him and says that she needs him to show up because no one is sober. He tells her "Goodnight."

The drunken doctors attend to the patient anyway. There are tobacco stains on his teeth, and that may explain. He used to chew tobacco, and now he doesn't. It's Sarcoidosis.

Cuddy tells House that the team solved the case without him. He says that's good. She asks what is going on. He says that he hasn't slept since Kutner killed himself.

House goes to bed. When he wakes up, he looks in the mirror and smiles, No Amber, but then as he turns around, there she is. House is still hallucinating from his insomnia, and we will have his alter ego characterization of Amber for at least one more episode.

Next week, Do House and Cuddy Kiss?

Monday, April 13, 2009

House MD Season 5 Episode 21 Recap


What happened on House tonight?

At the beginning of the episode tonight, we see two eco-nuts chained to a large piece of equipment during a protest of what seems to be a mining operation of some sort. The workers confront dirty hippy chick and dirty hippy dude. Workers complain that the hippies should just let them do their job. The hippies utter something incoherent about a phony impending ecological disaster, just like all the other fake hysterias they have "warned" us about for the last 4 decades or so.

Unwashed hippy chick passes out from the power of her own stink, and the guy finally unlocks himself to make sure that she's okay. As he gets up, the LSD kicks in and things start to send him on a bad trip. He, of course, winds up as the next case that House will tackle.

In the wake of Kutner's suicide, Cameron calls off a vacation that she was supposed to take with Chase. She discovered that he had purchased a ring, and got all freaked out that he is going to propose to her. Especially that she thinks Kutner's suicide may have something to do with driving him to want to marry her, and she doesn't want that to be a factor that influences his decision.

House uncovers that Wilson is eating healthy, and tries to figure out what is going on. He snoops around in Wilson's apartment, looking to solve the mystery. When Wilson comes in, he asks if Wilson is eating healthy because Kutner's dead. Wilson replies that yes, he's eating healthier because if he doesn't watch what he eats, he might accidentally kill himself. House observes that mortality is mortality, and Wilson may be considering his own mortality. Wilson points out that he has plenty of junk food around. House says showing him food he hasn't eaten doesn't mean anything. Wilson replies, "If you're looking for evidence of what I have eaten, first door on the right."

Chase can't figure out what is going on with Cameron, and asks Cuddy if Cameron is in love with House. She stalls, and he asks if she (Cuddy) is in love with House. She stalls again, and Chase says, "two questions. No answers. I'll extrapolate from there."

Meanwhile, our eco nut friend continues to puzzle the team with an ever growing risk of impending death. Signs point towards it being cancer, but there is not any actual evidence of cancer. Taub suggests attempting to grow the tumor in response to House suggesting they irradiate the patient. House loves the idea, but can't understand why he didn't think of it himself. He tells Wilson he lost his mojo.

At a vending machine, Wilson buys some gummi bears. House says, "you hate gummy bears, but more importantly, I hate gummy bears." He finally realizes that wilson was merely eating food that House won't eat. "You're eating healthy because you know that I have no desire to eat healthy." Wilson comes clean that he was just messing with house, because that's what is normal for them. He tried to change things after Amber died, but that just didn't fit right. Messing with House fits. Of course, House finally gets an idea, thanks to Wilson's mental challenge.

He asks the patient about contact with flowers. There's no garden, they live in an apartment. No window box. No potted plants. Finally he turns to Taub and says "your marriage sucks." "Thanks," Taub replies. House goes on to say that the eco-nut loves a tree in Oregon more than his wife, so he must have bought her flowers at some point to make up for being a sucky husband. His wife isn't even aware of it, but he did. He bought her roses. The thorn of the rose gave him an infection and it's totally curable. Good news for him. Bad for the wife.

After being dumped by Chase, Cameron talks to House and he tells her that is just what she wanted. She says she didn't want to dump him. He says, you wanted him to dump you. There's much less guilt that way. So, she goes back to Chase and explains her situation to him. He bends down on his knee, and she smiles with joy.

At the end, House is playing piano, and Amber show up and starts talking to him. Next week, House continues to hallucinate. Were the people right that believe this to be a dream sequence. Things got fuzzy at the end of the episode two weeks ago. Is this real, or a dream? Or is House really hallucinating?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Kutner's Dead House MD Season 5 Episode 20 Recap

Simple Explanations

Watch and download this episode of House MD

In a shocking episode, Dr. Lawrence Kutner, played by actor Kal Penn is dead. Dr. House was curious why he did not show up to work, and sent Foreman and Thirteen (aka Dr. Hadley) to investigate. When they enter his apartment, they find him laying in a pool of blood. Suicide by self inflicted gunshot wound.

House takes this on as his main focal point of trying to solve the mystery of why Kutner would kill himself. There is a couple, an older man and woman. The man, played by Meatloaf, is having heart problems, and the woman fakes illness to be close with her husband.

As the episode unfolds, it turns out that the woman really does have something wrong with her, and She is bent on attempting to save her husband. The plot continues to revolve around the issue of suicide, from the woman trying to kill herself to save her husband and donate her heart, to her husband demanding to donate his kidney to save his wife, and of course, Kutner's suicide, which House simply cannot wrap his mind around.

House continues to focus more on solving the mystery of why Kutner would kill himself than on the mystery of what is wrong with the now mysteriously ill woman. House persuades Cameron to talk to Meatloaf and have him agree to donate his kidney to his dying wife. He will die on the table, but he only has a few days to live. He agrees, but then Cameron tells House that there are nodules on Meatloaf's fingers, and he may have a curable disease.

She's correct, and House tells him that he has a fungal infection and he's completely curable. He tells house that they'll be scraping up his remains to give a kidney to his wife. His plans are foiled when Taub tells the woman that her husband has a curable disease, but he wants to donate his kidney, if that's okay with her.

Meanwhile, House has decided that there is no plausible reason for Kutner to commit suicide, so it must have been murder. Now he is investigating the "murder" of Lawrence Kutner. Wilson is appalled, and tells House that all he cares about is the mystery of it all. He is not there because he cares about Kutner. He only cares to solve the puzzle. He says that's all it is to House, is a mystery to be solved. That's all anything ever is.

The woman is getting worse, and it finally occurs to House that if she is sick, and they can't figure out what is wrong, then all the clues must not be there. Everybody lies, so she lied about something. He bursts in and asks why she would think the beaches of Rio are the same as the beaches of Hawaii. It turns out, she was bitten by some sort of fly. She comes clean and tells her husband that she just got tired of waiting for him to come so they can have their dream vacation in Rio, and she went with someone else.

It's too late, however. She was not diagnosed in time.

House continues looking through Kutners apartment, while everyone else attends the funeral. Taub, staying behind at the hospital, finally breaks down and cries.

At the end, Fox asks viewers to go to At the new mockup site, there is a tribute to Dr. Kutner. This makes it seem as if Kal Penn, the actor, is perhaps not living anymore, but at this point I have seen no evidence of such. Please do let me know if this is incorrect.

At the site, there is also an obituary. Here's an excerpt.

Mercer County Courier
April 7, 2009

Dr. Lawrence Kutner died on Thursday, April 2nd from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was 33 years old.

"Dr. Kutner was a hard working, young doctor with a kind, unassuming, gentle manner. He will be missed by all of us", said Dr. Lisa Cuddy, Dean of Medicine at Princeton Plainsboro Teaching Hospital, where Dr. Kutner worked.

Dr. Kutner was born in Freemont, California. Tragedy marred his early life as he lost his parents, Karamchand and Niki Baidwan, who were shot during an armed robbery. After a couple of years in foster care, Julia and Richard Kutner adopted Lawrence. He showed great promise in high school, winning a Westinghouse Science award for an experiment involving dark matter. His adoptive parents mused that he showed a freethinking, inventive streak from a young age.

Viewers are asked to leave their message for Dr. Kutner. It looks to me like this is an attempt at viral marketing. However, I'm not sure, in spite of the shocking nature of Kutner's demise, that he is an important enough character on the show to really go viral with this. It sort of reminds me of the question on the Simpsons about what important characters have died. Although several characters had died throughout the show, the correct answer was that no important characters had ever died.

Related: Amber Dies: What happened to Wilson's girlfriend?

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