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Tuesday, August 11, 2020

TV Rewind | House MD: The medical genius we need right now

House or House MD is one of the most engaging medical dramas that we have seen in the last few years. Starring Hugh Laurie in the titular role, the show first premiered in 2004 and lasted for eight seasons.

Written by Sampada Sharma | New Delhi | Updated: May 5, 2020 2:14:45 pm
tv rewind house Hugh Laurie is still remembered for playing Dr House on this TV show.

The world is struggling with a pandemic and amid the lockdown that has been initiated in India, we can do nothing but stay at home, and calm our nerves. But in this time of crisis when the world feels unreal, I couldn’t help but think of a doctor who would have pulled something out of his hat to make the world a better place and of course it goes without saying, this is a fictional doctor. Meet Dr House.

House or House MD is one of the most engaging medical dramas that we have seen in the last few years. Starring Hugh Laurie in the titular role, the show first premiered in 2004 and lasted for eight seasons.

The easiest way to describe him would be to call him the man with Tony Stark’s arrogance and genius but not as much money

What is House MD about?

House is a medical drama with Dr House at the center of the action. Dr House is an excellent diagnostician who can find a needle in a haystack, sometimes literally too. He leads a team of three doctors at the start of the show, and together they diagnose and treat patients who come in with unique or confusing symptoms.

hugh laurie House MD started in 2004 and ran for eight seasons.

The show proceeds in a strictly old-fashioned format where we witness one case per episode and an overall story arc for the regular cast members. As the show goes on, we learn more about House, his life, his past, why he walks with a cane and why is he so arrogant.

What works for House MD?

From the start, what works as a charm for this show is its casting. Casting Hugh Laurie in this role was utter genius. Even though he is mean and unlikable sometimes, there is no way that one questions his decision making in the show’s universe. His approach gives the show a dark-comedy angle. The audience might not find him sympathetic towards his patients, but they trust his intelligence and that is more than enough to keep you interested in the show.

House is also great at detective work and the audience is time and again reminded of the same with the show’s Sherlock Holmes references. This works as a great tool for the character.

Medical dramas often mellow down the content for us to understand. However, House doesn’t really do that. Here, instead of throwing smart words around, we are often told what is actually happening, and unlike what other showrunners believe, this doesn’t alienate us.

House MD tv show House is still remembered as one of the best medical dramas.

House’s addiction, Omar’s quarantine and even the love story between Allison and House highlighted the humane side of the show.

What does not work for House MD?

The first three seasons of House are absolutely binge-worthy, but then comes a phase in Season 4 where it’s hard to remember why we like the show. There is a huge influx of new characters in the fourth season as Dr House changes his three-person team. And while some of them eventually stick around, the process is tiring.

Another element that sometimes doesn’t work in favour of the show is its predictable structure. Nearly every episode of the show is constructed around the same beats.

Patient comes in.
Gets diagnosed.
Starts treatment.
Gets even more sick.
Doctors re-examine.
On the verge of death.
House finds the correct diagnosis.
Episode ends.

In fact, it got so predictable in the later seasons, that the individual cases were not as interesting to watch anymore.

The legacy

Through its eight-season run, House won two Emmys, and Hugh Laurie picked up two Golden Globes awards.

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House is streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

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