House S08E11 (Nobody’s Fault) Late Review

I was doing some work travel and only got the chance to see the episode today. Duh, blood clot! Of course. The thing that can be used to explain away any type of injury. Why didn’t I think of that?? So the actual initial injury is a single stab wound to the chest, piercing Chase’s heart (good aim, psychotic patient!). So House did fix it for Chase after all, he came up with the blood clot diagnosis. Interesting that Chase was chastising House for not being objective when House kept trying to confirm that Chase can’t feel his legs (‘I just said I can’t feel anything. Objectivity, House.”) Of course when it comes to diagnising himself, Chase’s mind immediately goes to the worst possible scenario (something I didn’t catch that causes permanent paralysis). What is up with Taub, Park and Adams performing the surgery to save Chase’s life? Don’t they have a trauma team at Princeton-Plainsboro? If we’re talking ethical breach or inappropriate conduct, that skirts very close to the line too, no?

After all the hype about the battle between House and Cofield and the meeting between superstar acting talents Hugh Laurie and Jeffrey Wright, I actually thought Wright is  better in his short scenes with Omar Epps and Jesse Spencer. The disappointment tinged with regret when Cofield deduced that the reason Foreman chose him to conduct the disciplinary hearing isn’t because Foreman thought he’d be an objective investigator, but because Foreman thought Cofield might be more inclined to save Foreman’s ass compared to other people because of their previous mentor-protege relationship. In the scene between Cofield and Chase, with a few words and gestures, Wright managed to show us what kind of doctor Cofield is – probably not  a brilliant genius like House, but someone gentle, caring and thoughtful towards his patients.

I was keeping track of the word ‘friend’ because of an earlier spoiler – it turns out House balked when Cofield said Chase is his friend (“he’s a coworker”), Taub didn’t say anything either way when Cofield referred to Chase as his friend, and Park referred to Chase as her friend on her own initiative (“My friend is here because you didn’t listen to me”.) The first two are predictable, the last one is a bit of a shocker. I would guess that Park and Adams have known Chase only for a few months at this time (show-wise, we’re talking Episode 5 to Episode 11, just 7 episodes in total). But maybe Chase and Park totally bonded that time she invited him (and only him!) out for drinks.

The blame-a-thon goes like this – Adams blamed herself because it was her diagnosis Chase was trying to test and she probably provoked the psychotic reaction by holding the needle in front of the patient; Taub blamed Chase for bringing a scalpel to a room with a patient suffering from a psychotic break; Park tried to cover for everybody but was so awkward and obvious about it she was found out, and then sorta, kinda implicitly put the blame on Foreman for essentially being a rubber-stamper for House (Foreman is no Cuddy, that’s for sure); House defended his disgnostic method and claimed he couldn’t have foreseen Chase and Adams defying his orders, but then refused to say that he blamed either one of them; Chase told Cofield no one is to be blamed, but actually seems to be blaming House. I’m mostly with Taub; Chase, what the heck were you thinking??? I understand all the talk about House fostering an atmosphere of recklessness, but at the end of the day, House did not bring that scalpel to the room, just as House did not kill Dibala back in Season 6. I balked at Cameron putting all or most the blame on House then, and I balk at Cofield doing the same now. It’s probably a shared responsibility, but I would put more of the blame on Chase himself. Chase recognized this during the Dibala incident, taking full responsibility at that time, so him blaming House this time around feels a bit like plot-contrivance as a set-up for next week’s episode.

I was going to say that the patient’s wife barging in to save House’s ass is so unsubtle and un-Housian, ….. except this show hasn’t really been that subtle and Housian anyway since the end of Season 3. Thank god the reason for the orange hair wasn’t that Chase and Adams are sleeping together; he was using her shampoo while showering at the hospital after a late night of drinking. Chase is right in this instance, seriously House, couldn’t you just tell him to stop coming in late? You’re his boss, that’s your prerogative. And what kind of boss smells his employees’ hair anyway? Creepy. The apology is unexpected, but it would be more touching if I know exactly what it is he’s apologizing for. For his method and process fostering recklessness and disharmony among his team members? For the prank with the shampoo? It’s hard to forgive someone if you’re not sure what they’re sorry about. Initially, I thought it was weird that Chase defended House pretty strongly when talking to Cofield, but seems quite angry at House in the last scene. But then I realized Chase was defending House from the charge of callousness and not caring about Chase’s injury, the anger is about something else altogether, not about whether House cared about him or not.

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