House M.D.

8.2 / 10
44 min
Drama
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8.5
" gives "House - Season 4" a 8.5."
Written by on 14 September 2013.
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House - Season 4

The brilliant Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie) is back for a new season, but this time he’s missing a team. After Chase was fired and Cameron and Foreman walked out of Princeton Plainsboro Hospital, House’s office is quiet. Well, quiet… His electric guitar blasts through the entire Diagnostics department. It appears that House doesn’t care too much about team members, but James Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) and Lisa Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) think differently. It’s not just that he needs a team, he has to select the members by himself as well. Knowing Greg House, it’s not going to happen that easily. At the end of the first episode we know his solution: he’s going to select his team by means of a drop out race.

This is basically what the entire season is about: House selecting a new team. Normal doctors will interview their new applicants, but House puts them all in one room, gives them a number, and lets them compete with one another. He fires some people at random (‘Row D, you’re fired.’) and divides them into groups to keep up the competition. In this season it becomes clear that even the brilliant loner House needs people to solve his cases (and, of course, run tests for him). I think it’s a creative way to change cast members, because in other series, it often happens abruptly and without much mention. I think it’s a great choice to do it like this, especially because it’s such a House-y way to handle things. It makes it very tangible and fun to watch, because you want ‘your favourite’ to join the new team.

After the second episode, it’s clear who the main characters of this season are. First of all, there’s Chris Taub (Peter Jacobson, 'The Starter Wife'), the ex-plastic surgeon who wants more than just improving people’s looks. Then there is the mysterious Thirteen (Olivia Wilde, 'The O.C.'), whose name and history remain concealed (for now?)—‘Thirteen’ is the number given to her by House. Lawrence Kutner (Kal Penn, 'How I Met Your Mother') gets himself fired from the competition, but regains his place in the race with a clever move. Then we’ve got the Mormon Jeffrey ‘Big Love’ Cole and the older doctor Henry Dobson who claims to be 21, simply because he doesn’t think his age is relevant. Lastly, there’s Amber Volakis (Anne Dudek, 'Covert Affairs'), a competitive blonde with a strong will, who undoubtedly deserves the nickname ‘cutthroat bitch’. She becomes increasingly important because love is in the air. And thank God we don’t have to miss Foreman, Chase, and Cameron for too long; they’ll peek around the corner soon enough. I really think casting is amazing this season. There are more women and multiple nationalities in the team, which contributes to different dynamics than before, but in a good way.

This season’s cases are rather interesting as well. The patients’ personalities and motives vary greatly: there are cooperative patients, patients who already know what’s wrong with them and only come in for treatment, and there even is a patient who wants everything done in secret, because she doesn’t want NASA to know she’s sick. What I admire in the writers of House: there are such clever parallels between the patients and the development of the main characters in the show. I won’t elaborate on it too much, because it’s more fun to discover them for yourself, but I thought it was worthy to mention. And I haven’t even discussed the incredible two-part season finale. Because… wow.

All in all, this is one of my favourite seasons of House. I’m awarding it with a very well-deserved 8.5.
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