By Scrubadoo’s Jen Hankin
The day is here, after 8 years, we’ll be saying goodbye to Dr. House and his colleagues. Tonight’s episode is called Everybody Dies, but it’s entirely under wraps just what that means. Does everybody actually die? Or is the episode’s title merely a philosophical one?
We’ve asked a few of you to tell us your thoughts on the long-run, medical TV series in this month’s Your Stories.
Meet our Respondents:
JT: Jason Tetro, The Germ Guy
AH: Andrew Holtz, MPH, Author of The Medical Science of House, M.D.
CS: Carly Stewart, 4th year medical student at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine and Money Crashers Personal Finance Health Contributor.
PR: Patti J Ryan, A-Fib, Inc.
Scrubadoo: What are your thoughts about the end of House? Sad? Enough already?
AH: House has had a great run, but you don’t want to overstay your welcome. I think they are making the right decision to bring the series to a close.
CS: I watched a couple House episodes as part of my medical school classes. We analyzed the medial reasoning in the show and discussed what the patient might have before they revealed it in the end. Thus, it was just as much a part of my educational life as it was my personal life.
PR: It’s about time to wrap it up before the quality drops off – leave ‘em wanting more!
Scrubadoo: How do you think it will end, any predictions?
JT: I think the team at House is working hard to prevent any kind of ‘sappy ending’ or one that wraps up everything. Having seen some of the promos for the episode, I almost feel as if the only way this could go is if House attempts something crazy such as suicide so that he can avoid jail. But in all honesty, I feel that nothing is going to happen and that House will go to jail and Wilson will take the chemo so that he can be there for his friend 6 months later. If it ends like that, I’ll feel satisfied.
AH: House is often unpredictable, so I won’t try. But I do expect the ending will be a real zinger.
CS: I say the final episode will have some mysterious ending that no one will know exactly what to make of. Of course, there will likely be some kind of medical mystery as always that may or may not be solved, but I would not be surprised to see some kind of cliffhanger relating specifically to the the future of Dr. House.
PR: I always thought House would die in his sleep, perhaps an aneurysm related to his leg trauma.
Scrubadoo: Tell me about your favorite House moment over the years?
JT: Help Me (6.22), the finale of season 6. We finally saw House as a doctor and as a healer who is unfortunately imperfect. For many of us out in the real world who have faced the demons of infallibility with incredible consequences, the episode hit very close to home.
CS: There are far too many to even list, but one of my recent favorites was when House was sharing his Vicodin with Dr. Wilson, who had been diagnosed with cancer. At one point, House said something to the effect of “These are a gift so stop throwing them up.”
PR: Any time House gets that “look” that says he made a connection between disparate bits. And anytime House plays another switcheroo that turns the table on authority, or defies the odds. And any time we get a glimpse inside that incredible brain. (Masterful job by Hugh Laurie.)
Scrubadoo: What’s your favorite medical moment?
JT: It’s funny that you ask this…as a microbiologist known as The Germ Guy, I always enjoy trying to determine the cause of the POTW’s illness. The most enjoyable was the Euphoria two-part episode (2.20, 2.21) in which Naegleria fowleri, a pathogen I have written about and studied appeared as the cause. To have so much time devoted to that one bug was a true delight.
AH: I would put the first episode with tape worms lurking in the patient’s brain near the top of my list. I also really liked the very next episode, in which a teenage boy’s strange symptoms turn out to be caused by measles virus that was dormant in his brain since infancy. That episode was a classic example of a scenario that seems like science fiction and yet does happen in the real world.
CS: There was one episode from the first season involving African Sleeping Sickness, and another one from a few years back on Endometriosis in women, something I dealt with closely during my gynecology rotation here at Feinberg.
Scrubadoo: Thoughts about the series as a whole?
PR: Being a fan of the lead character, Dr. Gregory House, requires a seat belt and crash helmet to survive the roller-coaster ride. While the patients in the stories usually come out ahead, House spends an abnormal amount of his energy tormenting his colleagues and subordinates. Why? And, what does this say about him? Can he blame it on being in continuing pain? Is it the price of his genius? That’s why we have kept watching all these years. Since we are drawn to the stories, what does it say about us, the viewers? Do we like to see others struggle to deal with House, while trying to solve the ‘medical mystery of the week’? The amazing writing staff kept this series from becoming the ‘Marcus Welby, MD’ of the new millennium.
Do you have an opinion? Share with us your thoughts about House in a comment below!