I’ve been a fairly religious fan of House, MD ever since I happened to catch two Season 1 episodes during re-runs: “Love Hurts” and the critically acclaimed “Three Stories”. The series was pretty formulaic, something that became more obvious as it went on, but managed to hit on all cylinders more than it would miss and provide eight years of engaging, entertaining TV (although the medical accuracy may leave something to be desired, but that’s not why you’re watching House, is it?).
Last night’s finale was billed as two hours, but the “two hour event” was actually a one hour behind the scenes/retrospective special followed by a standard length episode. Which is good; I enjoyed the finale, “Everybody Dies”, but I do feel it was a bit padded in places. The final episode finds House, distraught over his impending return to prison and missing the final few months of his best friend, Wilson’s life. As he tries to find his way out of the predicament, he must treat a heroin addict who is suffering from an autoimmune reaction. After hearing the alluring description of heroin his patient provides, House seeks some respite in the drug, only to wake up next to his dead patient and inside of a burning warehouse.
The episode takes it’s cues from the best episodes, focusing on House’s unique mindset and perspective, as the majority of the story is told in flashbacks and begins with House waking up inside of the warehouse. By using this, it feels more like a classic episode, something that fits the structure of early House episodes before the semi-annual team shake ups began.
The cast, both current and returning, turn in some fantastic performances, though the absence of a Cuddy appearance is sorely noted. It was great to see many characters, including Stacy and Cameron, return to speak to House as his hallucinations.
There is, of course, the twist ending. I won’t ruin it here. But I will say that I think it was a perfect ending to the series. Slightly insane, but perfectly fitting for the character. Will we ever see House again? Unlikely, though the door isn’t necessarily slammed shut for that to happen one day. But for now, the series ends on a melancholy note, and it’s one I wouldn’t change for the world.