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14 May 2012 @ 11:21 pm
House: Holding On  
The penultimate episode of the series. No holding back the punches now, folks!


A 19 year old named Derrick comes to the hospital with heavy nose bleeds and dizziness with no apparent cause. The case feels pretty uninteresting to House in the wake of the much more important announcement from Wilson that he's not going to do anymore chemo, effectively sealing his fate of lasting only 5 months at best. While the rest of House's team attempts to help Derrick, House goes about his usual tactics of lying and manipulation to try and get Wilson to change his mind. He also takes Foreman's gesture of goodwill (season basketball tickets) and sympathy for House's impending loss and flushes them down the toilet. Literally. That part comes back to haunt in the episode. As a side note, House's reaction to what he perceives as Foreman trying to replace Wilson was so incredibly sad. For the first time ever I actually wanted to hug House. I've never felt that way.

Overall, I really enjoyed the wonderful parallels between the Patient of the Week and the House/Wilson story. It turns out that along with nosebleeds, Derrick has been hearing the voice of his deceased brother Christopher who was killed years ago. His father drank himself to death over it and their mother got rid of all the pictures of Christopher in hopes of moving her family past their grief. Derrick claims it sort of worked but clearly not completely since he held onto one photo of Christopher and is conflicted about the voice in his head. The entire episode is about dealing with loss. Both Derrick and House are in their own way trying to hold onto someone they love, no matter how much damage they're doing to themselves and the people around them. It all comes to a head when Derrick tries to kill himself rather than lose what piece of his brother he has left which triggers House to attack Derrick in a fit of rage. I can see how this is House snapping at the thought of another human being laying down to die like Wilson. But I think it's also House being fearful that Derrick was living out what House essentially feels: that life can't go on without the person he loves.

All the House/Wilson scenes were well constructed going from the usual House-ish antics to something much more honest and painful as House plainly tells Wilson he needs him and he doesn't want him to die without a fight. What was really nice about the scenes is that you see both of their points. Wilson doesn't want to die in agony and he made a difficult decision. The fact that House as his friend is not letting him live the next 5 months with that decision in peace is pretty bad. The whole scene in the car was like knives in the heart when Wilson finally shouted, "You're making me go through it alone!" That somehow got me way more than all the other heart-wrenching stuff that followed about Wilson just wanting House to tell him his life was worth while and that he loved Wilson. I guess the writers aren't trying to be subtle at this stage.

The way all of this got more or less resolved with Wilson deciding to do more chemo but House finally coming around and telling Wilson he was right in the first place felt ever so slightly rushed. But that was fine since the episode ended on a "twist" of sorts. Thanks to House's flushing of Foreman's gift, the sewer pipes at the hospital got backed up and destroyed the MRI room. The police labeled this hostile vandalism and now House has to go back to prison for the next six months. Just one month more than Wilson's expiration date. LIFE IS SO NOT FAIR.

I do have to add that I don't get why this gets House into such trouble when there's apparently no backlash from him strangling a patient in front of the patient's mother. Really? No lawsuit or accusation of attempted manslaughter on that one? The busted pipes is what gets him in the hot seat? New Jersey law enforcement really need to get priorities straight.

This is a show where literally ANYTHING can happen (and just about anything has) so I can't even begin to speculate what the last episode ever is going to reveal. For all we know, the entire 8 seasons was dreamed by huge Nerf ball that's really an alien lifeform that's been sitting in House's office since the beginning. Seriously. I wouldn't put it past the writers.
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quickyfant: crazy!Tenquickyfant on May 15th, 2012 03:53 am (UTC)
I am so terribly behind on House! I am watching episode eight...still ages away from the episode you watched! I went through a phase of not wanting to watch any more. But I think reading your renewed interest in it I am also getting interested again! :)
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on May 15th, 2012 04:19 am (UTC)
I only got back into it because the show is ending and I feel like I need to give it a proper goodbye.
quickyfant: crazy!Tenquickyfant on May 15th, 2012 04:30 am (UTC)
Well I am watching it right now and its scary how I can get sucked in to House being a jerk again! :S
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: DTamers_BeautifulNightguardian_chaos on May 15th, 2012 04:08 am (UTC)
It saddened me so much to see that Wilson apparently had so little faith in his surviving past five months that he had given up on the chemo option, but his wanting those five months to be less painful is understandable, and House's reaction to this was so wonderfully written. I know I can't stand to see people give up on themselves when they still have a chance, and when it's someone I care for, the reaction is even more profound.

House's frustrated assault against the patient who seemed to prefer death to losing the sound of his brother's voice was incredible. The patient would have rather died than face the pain of losing his brother all over again, and it did seem like House was just so angry that anyone could willingly choose DEATH (this thing that Wilson may not be able to avoid, and not through much choice at all) rather than try to stay alive when they do have that choice... Just...ah, the lovely parallels. *squeaks*

Derrick has been hearing the voice of his deceased brother Christopher who was killed years ago. His father drank himself to death over it and their mother got rid of all the pictures of Christopher in hopes of moving her family past their grief.

It bothers me so much when one member of a household makes a command decision like this that can so negatively affect all involved. Grief happens differently for each person, and not giving someone the option to be surrounded by their memories makes me frustrated. However, it's something very real that people do, so I like that it was included.

I really liked the scene in which Foreman talked to Wilson about how, throughout everything, House has remained a constant in Wilson's life. No matter how crazy they have driven each other at times, there's just something that keeps them sticking around each other. Foreman's comment that people sometimes have to choose to feel pain in order to help those they care about was so expertly slid in there, too.

The whole scene in the car was like knives in the heart when Wilson finally shouted, "You're making me go through it alone!" That somehow got me way more than all the other heart-wrenching stuff that followed about Wilson just wanting House to tell him his life was worth while and that he loved Wilson.

Oh man, I didn't even see this scene, and just reading about it made sympathy pain shoot through me chest. I'm going to have to find this episode and watch it in its entirety later.

Thanks to House's flushing of Foreman's gift, the sewer pipes at the hospital got backed up and destroyed the MRI room. The police labeled this hostile vandalism and now House has to go back to prison for the next six months. Just one month more than Wilson's expiration date. LIFE IS SO NOT FAIR.

That moment was SO HORRIBLE. I didn't even know what the hell was in the bag that had blocked up the sewage pipes because I hadn't seen that part of the episode. I just knew it was House's fault, while I stared in puzzled confusion at the bag. I had so many possibilities pop into my head, haha. XD

Really? No lawsuit or accusation of attempted manslaughter on that one?

I'd imagine there must be charges pressed in order for THAT to have an effect, and since the mother just seemed grateful that her son would live, maybe bringing up charges didn't seem quite as relevant?

Oh yes, and the scene in which House shouts that he lives with pain every day and yet doesn't choose to lie down and die was stunning. I couldn't take my eyes off the screen for that. It was probably my favorite part of what I saw. You can really see him finally being forced to confront, without looking away, the very real fact that he needs Wilson to stick around.

For all we know, the entire 8 seasons was dreamed by huge Nerf ball that's really an alien lifeform that's been sitting in House's office since the beginning. Seriously.

It is not a Nerf ball. Clearly, the god dreaming up the House universe is that giant tennis ball that House was so fond of playing with for so long. The tennis ball would manifest itself in the universe because it was bored simply watching and not participating. Yes! This makes perfect sense!
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: SPN_D+B_Securityguardian_chaos on May 15th, 2012 04:12 am (UTC)
It just occurred to me that you are talking about the same ball. *facepalms* Gah! Oh gosh, you even wrote that in the sentence. Just...gyeh. *facepalms again*
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on May 15th, 2012 04:17 am (UTC)
I think Wilson when he considers his next five months only sees the faces of those patients who lived in horrific pain before the inevitable, tragic end.

One thing about this episode that bothered me was that House's team was getting on his case about not talking about his feelings regarding Wilson's condition. But the start of the episode was House doing just that and he got shot down by the team in favor of focusing on the patient "as if all is normal." I really didn't get what they wanted.

It just occurred to me that you are talking about the same ball.

This only highlights how undefinable that ball is. No one knows! Nerf ball? Tennis ball?

Foreman's comment that people sometimes have to choose to feel pain in order to help those they care about was so expertly slid in there, too.

I wasn't sure how I felt about this comment. On one hand it's true but Wilson was right when he told House that their friendship has largely been about House and Wilson dying is about Wilson, not House. At this stage, I think Wilson is entitled to spare himself some pain even if it means House suffers for it. And luckily House got that by the end.
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: Sherlock_Heart+Mindguardian_chaos on May 15th, 2012 04:50 am (UTC)
I think Wilson when he considers his next five months only sees the faces of those patients who lived in horrific pain before the inevitable, tragic end.

Ohh. Yeah, that would definitely be a situation in which his own experience works against him.

In terms of start VS. finish of the episode, well, I can't yet comment on that until I've actually seen the beginning. As half an episode, it seems quite coherent, though! XD

This only highlights how undefinable that ball is. No one knows! Nerf ball? Tennis ball?

It is The Ball Of Many Names! Also known as: "THE BALL."

At this stage, I think Wilson is entitled to spare himself some pain even if it means House suffers for it. And luckily House got that by the end.

Well, I think it's also about Wilson in that he's essentially convinced himself not to bother trying to live any longer. And that decision does have a huge impact on House, yes, but I'm sure there's also a huge part of House that is enraged for Wilson, and wanting Watson to want to beat this, odds be damned. Which is maybe why House seemed so tamed when he opened the door for Wilson at the end. It wasn't House that mentioned the chemo at that point, so he wasn't urging it on Wilson; rather, it was Wilson who brought the subject up then.

Perhaps I'm simply being nit-picky, ha. Stories about characters fearing loss are quite intriguing to me.