House Review: The Game of Risk
Hold the presses. I actually like this week's House!
And I get that feeling that might be a fairly divisive stance. "We Need The Eggs" had all the makings of an episode that could have driven me completely bonkers. After last week's promo featuring a parade of hookers, I wasn't much looking forward to seeing House dive back into his frat boy antics full force. But as much as I expected to hate this episode, I fully enjoyed it. Because surprisingly, it wasn't about sex.
Yes, I realize there was a sex doll involved. But, like the patient Henry said, there's more to it than that. This episode was all about relationships and the many colorful ways House and his team manage to avoid them for fear of getting hurt like they all have so horribly in the past. And since Wilson brought up Cuddy, I think it may be acceptable to mention her as well. House took an enormous risk in having a relationship with her and it completely failed.
Hence the consistent slew of hookers ever since her departure.
But to House, one hooker named Emily seems worth fighting for. Even as I write a ridiculous sentence like that, I still can recognize that House's whole stance on hookers is being eroded. His total unwillingness to accept that a woman, albeit one who he was paying to be with him, would leave seemed to shake him up enough to want to ruin her future relationship and compel Emily to stay with him.
As House is going through his usual charades and channels of sabotage we're given insight into the team's damage. Chase, who House theorizes just hits on anyone attractive and close by, asks Adams out who turns him down because she can't handle anything besides volunteering in her spare time. Both of them are completely scarred by their past marriages and neither seem quite willing to take the next step fully. Adams declines because she's fearful of getting too close.
But, by the end of the episode, Adams does take a risk, perhaps inspired by the patient's courage in asking her out.
She tries to take Chase up on his drink offer and he rejects her, realizing that perhaps House is right. If I cared more about these two getting together, this might seem like a "so close, but so far" moment, but I'm sure with the show winding down, these two will end up together so I'm not so concerned.
Park and Taub are also shying away from relationships in their own ways: Park, by avoiding the guy who asked her out and Taub by lying to a woman who showed interest. I'm glad Park went out with the band guy in the end. Their song was sweet, although, again, I think on another day I might have hated it.
This episode seemed be a bit of an answer to season 5's "The Itch." The episode featured an agoraphobic man who refused to leave his house. Meanwhile, Chase and Cameron weren't moving forward enough in their relationship until Cameron gave him a drawer, House attempted to see Cuddy after they shared a kiss, and little by little, everyone in the episode took a small step forward, or tried anyway, towards risking themselves with another person.
Maybe I'm drawn to this episode because it has some universal truths. When we let another person in, we risk so much, which can be ultimately rewarding if it works or completely devastating if it doesn't. Each character has experienced devastation, including the patient who can't seem to move on from his singular heartache, despite having a great girl he could be shifting his focus to. But he opted to ask Adams out, subconsciously knowing she'd probably say no, therefore not risking all that much.
The real risk would be to ask his neighbor Molly out on a date and as he stares at the teddy bear he won her at the carnival, he knows he won't; the cost is too great.
Back to House. Let me put a little disclaimer on what I'm about to say. My love of this series comes from seeing House attempt to make his life better through all the struggles, pitfalls, backwards steps, relationships, everything. Every person he's been in a relationship with I've enjoyed watching because we learn something about who he is. That said, I think Dominika was brought on board the series at a fairly reckless time for people who were invested in seeing House and Cuddy succeed. House marrying her was more about hurting Cuddy and having some form of a companion than anything else.
But I don't hate her, although I certainly wish if House was going to venture down the relationship path again, it would be with someone who the audience has some investment in, but I suppose that's not possible with the severe lack of women on this show. So we've got Dominika.
And I almost understand why House would be so unaware that his relationship with her actually is a relationship with her. He is putting in absolutely no effort and there is a level of ease to their interactions. So why wouldn't he want to keep her around? Of course, I'm sure now that House has this awareness that he actually enjoys her, things will go south more quickly, starting with his first lie to her regarding the letter of her citizenship.
I'm curious to see where they take this and that's a good feeling after wondering for so long about the series' lack of orientation. Same time next week.