After being on hiatus for a month, our favorite crotchety doc returns to the Monday night lineup, with a self-directed episode to boot. The central conflict of the episode revolves around a missing newborn, which causes the entire hospital to go on lockdown. Everyone is forced to stay in whatever room they find themselves, serving as a gentle lead-in coming off the show’s break.
Cameron, having arrived at the hospital to make Chase sign the divorce papers he has continually put off, is stuck in an examining room with her soon-to-be official ex. A sparring of words follows, eventually leading to a sensual goodbye. Foreman and Taub, trapped in the records room, decide to enter the mind of House through means of confiscated Vicodin, and amid the stupor, come across each other’s files and find the skeletons each didn’t want to come out. Hadley (“Thirteen”) and Wilson play a rousing game of Truth or Dare in the cafeteria, concluding with Wilson admitting to Thirteen that House has been keeping him from pursuing a love life. Finally, House, our one and only, is stuck in a room with a dying patient whose case he refused to take. But amid the back and forth, House comes to a point where he feels true remorse for the patient, and even admits that his brief relationship with Lydia, a sister-in-law of one of the women in his rehab clinic, changed him permanently. In the end, the baby is found by the ever-persistent Cuddy, and all is resolved.
The two main things that will surely prove to be important for the future of House are Wilson’s realization that House is holding him back in relationships, and House’s admission that he truly doesn’t want to be alone anymore.
We’ve seen from the beginning of the show that House’s actions, whether targeted at Wilson or not, have huge effects on what Wilson does and how he does it. He constantly self-censors and alters his actions to avoid criticism from House, whom he views as his best friend, in spite of his obvious flaws. But it is undeniable that it’s just about time for Wilson to break out of this self-deprecating funk and do what, and who, he wants. It’s likely that in the following episodes, we will see a few bombshells in Wilson’s love life that may have some permanent repercussions.
Now we return, as we always find ourselves doing, to Dr. House. We’ve heard similar admissions before, but today’s admission to the dying patient really highlighted his desperation to avoid continuing a lonely life. He is exceptionally poignant in his telling of Lydia’s effect on him, and how her disappearance from his life has left him permanently changed. It might be important to note that there was no talk of Cuddy and Lucas’ relationship, so that may or may not still be on. If it’s on, we will probably see heightened attempts by House to create a rift between them; if it’s off, we’re sure to see House swooping in for Cuddy’s affections. No matter what happens, though, it’ll definitely be interesting.
It seems that next week, House is going medieval, with a patient visiting Princeton-Plainsboro from the local Renaissance Fair. Also, we’re sure to see some expansion on Wilson’s relationship woes.