“ Genre: Television - House M.D. / Director: Fred Gerber, Newton Thomas Sigel, Deran Sarafian, Frederick King, Paris Barclay, Guy Ferland, Bill Johnson, Nelson McCormick / Actors: Hugh Laurie, Omar Epps ... / DVD released 27 February, 2006 at Universal Pictures Video / Features of the DVD: PAL „
This is my review of the first season of house on DVD. On the version I have got, there are no real extea features (or if there are, its on a disc I haven't got to yet, but I don't think that there is any,there are certainly non advertised on the box).
House is about Dr House, a genius but pessimistic Doctor, who loss function of his leg. His ideas when it comes to people is that everyone lies, and that no body is to be trusted. In this season, house has to deal with an epidemic affecting all the babies, a new investor in the hospital who cares more about profits than patients (resulting in patients health at risk, house having to fire somebody? and having to protect his job).
This first season is a great start to house (but was it just me, or was the film quality not that good?
This series is great for people interested in medical dramas, or just medicine (by far the best medical drama, forget anything like casualty). Furthermore, because of houses cynism, he always makes funny sarcastic remarks, so even if you do not like medical dramas, its almost more of a cross between a comedy and a medical documentry, with the cool CSI style 3d animation.
If you haven't seen House, I would say you are really missing out, it is probably the best tv series... ever
House MD is a tv series in which Hugh Laurie plays doctor House, a grumpy, big headed, manipulative, unapologetic yet incredibly clever diagnostician who leads a team of three others to solve medical cases where others have failed.
So what makes House M.D. such a great, entertaining and successful show? For me a lot of it is to do with the way Hugh portrays himself as this Doctor House, who's constant bleak, miserable output, yet witty nature never ceases to entertain. Him and his team are presented cases by the hospital Dean Dr Lisa Cuddy played by Lisa Edelstein. And as House never plays by the rules and has no respect for medical ethics, this leaves the team to come up with weird and wacky possibilities for a diagnosis.
His team however, consisting of a Neurologist Dr Foreman (Omar Epps), a surgeon Dr Chase (Jesse Spencer) and immunologist Dr Cameron (Jennifer Morrison), try everything in their power (and sometimes beyond) to stop House's seemingly harmful nature of care by trying to come up with a more respectable diagnosis, yet in most cases ultimately fail only to learn that House in the end always gets it right. You learn that House builds a special sort of relationship which is unique of each character, mainly through insult and clever manipulation.
Explaining each relationship is difficult to put in words as they only progress very gradually through the series. Perhaps most interesting one to appear in series 1 is of that between Dr House and Dr Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) an oncologist and perhaps House's only one and true "friend" that is again, cleverly played by the cold hearted diagnostician. Yet you feel that House does portray some feeling towards Dr Wilson which makes their character relationship a little more special and interesting to analyse.
Each episode consists of a different case for the team to crack, often resulting in very close shaves, either by the way of patient death or to their own personal careers. There is however an underlying story between the characters as mentioned before that gradually progresses from this series into the next. House M.D. is unlike any other series I have seen. More serious than Scrubs, and less soapy than Casualty or Holby City. House is able to hold a serious, yet witty tone that keeps you playing through.
You may notice a lot of technical medical words being thrown around, but there is no need for their understanding for the plot to unravel itself infront of you. House manages to separate the scientific mumbo jumbo from the importance of the plot and the way each character self develops.
One of my favourite series by far. Professional, brilliant acting by Hugh Laurie and all other main character. Well worth the watch.
After nearly six years, 132 episodes and countless awards, it is almost impossible to visualise anyone but Hugh Laurie in the role of Dr Gregory House. And yet if both the producers and Bryan Singer, director of the first episode had got there way and hired the 'quintessentially American person' for the title role, then that is the reality we would have been dealt. The story of the casting tape has become legendary by now. Filmed in a dingy Namibian hotel bathroom, with Laurie sporting the facial growth from his then current project 'Flight of the Phoenix'. A look that won over the producers so much that they commented how well the American actor grasped the character, completely unaware of Laurie's background. And the rest as they say is history.
Created in the role of a CSI medical drama, the weekly episodes revolve around a consistent formula. Person contracts rare life threatening illness, patient refered to House, House and team by the process of deductive reasoning eliminate allpossibilities and cure the patient. Indeed sprinkled throughout the seasons are constant references to the character of Sherlock Holmes, further strengthening the shows genre as more detective than medical. And this is the formula followed for the majority of the shows six seasons. With that in mind you think that it would have failed within a relatively short period of time as people became bored of the same old, same old. However, House strength lies in the relationships that have developed between characters. It is this the makes up the greater parts of the episodes.
House, the head of Diagnostic Medicine at Princeton Plainsboro is a drug addled genius, dependant on a walking stick for mobility and vicodin to function. He is as anti-social as they come. Throughout the years while there have been signs of change in the character, ultimately he has reverted to type. His best friend and source of much of House's scheming is Dr James Wilson as played by Robert Sean Leonard. He is the polar opposite to the Machiavellian House. Caring, sentimental and yet just as flawed. If House was accused of not caring enough, then Wilson Cares too much.
The Third part of the triangle is Dr Lisa Cuddy,one time love interest but current boss whose past relationship always ensures that her job is far from easy. Then the three members of House team played by Jennifer Morrison, Omar Epps and Jesse Spencer who are put upon more than most but whose characters develop from mere lackeys to House' equals.
Season 1 established the characters and the roles they would play. This is borne out in the 22 episodes. Bonus features on the dvd include the deleted scenes, commentaries and a great Q&A between main cast and crew. I promise you, the accent on Hugh Laurie in that will freak you out. All in all a great start to the series we all love so much.
I arrived very late to this TV series by asking for the series 1 Box Set for Xmas, just to see if I'd enjoy it. I enjoy many of the other American serial dramas (Grey's Anatomy, Brothers and Sisters etc) so I thought that House might be my kind of thing. Plus it has been going for several series now and has won awards, so clearly it's very popular.
House is centred on Dr Gregory House (Hugh Laurie), a grumpy, sarcastic and seemingly unfeeling man who avoids any kind of patient interaction and is only interested in diagnosing unusual illnesses. Alongside House is his team of three "hand-picked" diagnostic Doctors who are contracted to work under him for two years; Drs Foreman, Cameron and Chase. These three all seem to have a competitive relationship with one another, but show themselves to be intelligent and caring about their patients.
I have found House to be very formulaic, with few real twists and turns. It's the same old schtick every week; someone falls ill with some mystery illness and is hospitalised, House takes in interest due to the unusual nature of the illness, House and each of his team come up with different diagnoses which are always wrong, then House comes up with a bizarre diagnosis that the others strongly disagree with and he is always proven to be right and thus cures the patient. In fact, I had to watch ten episodes before anyone died, which is a bit rubbish, unbelieveable and now horribly predictable (dull).
I have also found myself not really caring about any of the main characters. You find out very little personal information about them, and you almost never get to see any of their social antics, so it's very difficult to warm to any of them. Every couple of episodes you find out a little bit more about them, but not really enough to make you care. This does improve as the first series goes on but it hasn't drawn me in enough to compel me to watch any of the further series. Hugh Laurie does a good turn as the moody and pessimistic House, but I'm not convinced it's the most amazing acting I've ever seen.
I really have found it difficult to believe how popular House has become in light of it's predictability and lack of realism. Maybe it's all the optimists watching it!
When I first saw a House DVD in a shop I thought it would be another boring American drama/sitcom based around people living in a house...
...I was wrong.
House is undoubtedly one of the best programmes I've had the pleasure of watching. Starring Hugh Laurie as the infamous Gregory House, the team of top doctors take odd case after odd case. They take the kind of cases that other doctors can't solve. Dr House is a renowned diagnostician famed for being able to solve the cases other doctors cannot. He tends to do this in the most unethical, controversial and sometimes damn cruel ways possible. He has a tendency towards biting sarcasm and a cruel wit. Underneath however you get the picture of a lonely man, unable to deal properly with his disability.
And this is what makes House so gripping, not the cases, but the lead character. Every victory house has, feels like your own victory. You almost want to cheer whenever he gets it right, even if he does manage to insult every minority in the world during the course of the episode.
Season 1 does a good job of setting the scene, creating precedents for how the majority of the programmes episodes will be structured.
This really is one of the best programmes on television, and comes highly recommended.
I'm not a huge fan of the medical drama genre of television. I don't like Holby City or ER or any of that. Medicine really doesn't seem like a great thing to base an entire show about (but then, is murder or psychics? Not really my debate here), but as a massive Hugh Laurie fan, having seen him on A Bit of Fry and Laurie, Blackadder, and Fortysomething, I thought I'd give House a try when I first heard it advertised. It was a medical drama, so I wasn't sure what to expect, but it did have Hugh as a back-talking sarcastic doctor, which sounded like a bit of a laugh.
House really does suck you in straight away. The pilot starts like almost every episode will in the future, with an external character beginning to develop the symptoms of the case House will have to diagnose. I like that. I think it really sucks you into the episode, even if you've never seen one before. It's just so mysterious.
So then we get introduced to House - head of diagnostics, who is exactly like they said he would be. A sarcastic doctor with a dry sense of humour. He has bad bedside manner, and believes every patient lies, even when they're about to die. He often doesn't like meeting his patients, focusing solely on the medical issues they have. While his social skills are strongly lacking, his medical skills stand out, making him probably the best doctor in the hospital. And then we're introduced to his co-workers and friends (or should I say, friend) and that's when I realised the show might actually be really good. The show wasn't just about House being a total dick, it was about everyone else as well. Hugh does a fantastic job of the doctor, and has an incredibly convincing American accent (to the point that not many people even knew he was British), but the supporting cast is just as good. Robert Sean Leonard plays Wilson, head of the Department of Oncology and House's only friend, who is quick on the support and snarky replies. Omar Epps, Jesse Spencer and Jeniffer Morrison play House's diagnostic team and have all got very distinct personalities. Lisa Edelstein plays the hospital's dean, and chief.
Every week there's a new case to be solved, and it's very much like CSI with germs, as it's been described as before - with the cases being much more like a mystery than simply diagnostics. But behind it all is one, much longer and much more prominent plot. In the first season, while introducing and getting to all of the main characters, there are quite a few sub-plots happening throughout. Firstly, there's introduction of the "villain" Edward Vogler (Chi McBride), the billionaire owner of a pharmaceutical company, who donates 100 million dollars to hospital, in return to becoming chair of the board. He dislikes House's personality and bedside manner, and wants the man fired. There's also the story of Jennifer Morrison's character's relationship to House.
Despite all of its wit and sarcasm, sharp comebacks and drama, House still maintains a great level of heart. There are some really sweet moments between the characters which really make you connect with them. House is, overall, a great TV show with lovely characters and will keep you sucked in for a very long time.
House is a american medical series with a lot of wit and comedy. hugh laurie takes up the character of house m.d , head of a diagnostics team in plainsborough new jersey. Every episode of this series features a new disease in which the team must work against the clock to solve.
The series is very exciting and serious , although hugh's british wit and narcissim offer plenty of laughs. Considering the depth of crossed storylines sorrounding house, his team of 4 , cuddy ( one of the board of directors) and wilson ( house freind , head of oncology), the episodes in the boxset do not need to be watched in order and they still make for an excting program. Altough the show is based on difficult medical storylines, the viewer dosnt feel like an outsider as there is usually an analogy provided to describe their plan.
The show is a good alrounder , providing thrilling medical mystery , laughs and a few tears along the way. The boxset itself contains 6 dvd cases containg four episodes each , with each episode being an hour long is provides a good evenings veiwing. The bos design is very good and shows that house is a smart man , but that he is lonely and has a lot of hidden anger. The dvd extras come on the final disc and offer a wide range of behind the scenes tours , interviews , bloopers and the creation of the show.
The boxset can be found for £10 in most places which is definatley a bargain, if you like the series there are four more available on dvd , as well as a sixth on sky 1, one downside is that the dvd does not have subtitles of any kind.
Just five years ago another medical drama from across the pond made a splash on UK viewers, this time featuring one of our own fine actors in the form of Hugh Laurie - previously known for his comedy work with Stephen Fry and his part in classic show Blackadder. This has now become one of Laurie's defining works, earning him and the show nominations and awards.
What Is House?
House is a medical drama set in the US at the fictional Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital in New Jersey. It revolves around grumpy but brilliant Dr. House and his team as they try to figure out cases that more often than not involves racing against the clock to save a life. House will only take cases that interest him, which is known throughout his hospital and others which means that the strangest cases that no-one can figure out get sent to him to diagnose.
House was created after one of the creators was inspired by a column written by a doctor in the New York Times and there are many references to Sherlock Holmes throughout the show as Dr. House's treatment of those around him was based on Sherlock Holmes' own strange coldness. They originally pitched the show as a CSI-style medical drama, which they most definitely succeeded with creating.
Who Is In It?
The main casting for this show is smaller than many popular US shows, though that's partly because the main premise of the show is to get a new patient and save them so that they can send them home.
Dr. Gregory House (Hugh Laurie): The cantankerous lead character Dr Gregory House is an odd one. He's insanely smart with a deep love of music and driving people insane. House walks with a cane and takes a lot of Vicodin in order to carry out his day, the reason he walks with a cane is not fully explained until late in the season but we do see others around him berate him over his use of prescription painkillers like tic-tacs. Gregory is divorced, though he still loves his wife with all his heart (But due to something from the past also deeply resents her) and lives alone. His only friend is Wilson, and other than that he has no social life. Patients generally tend to love or hate him - they love him because he is infamous for being able to treat cases no other doctor can figure out, and hated because he has absolutely no bedside manner and will tell everyone and anyone of how stupid they are.
Dr. James Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard): House's only friend Wilson is a kind-hearted man who cares about his patients and is the hospital's head of Oncology (Wilson's specialty). His friendship with the grumpy doctor is a little different from the norm, most of the time it's about arguing and playing head games. He's married and loves to upset House on those few occasions he can manage to win, and is the first person the team will turn to when they can't get House to listen to them.
Dr. Lisa Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein): As the woman in charge Cuddy spends a lot of her time chasing after House to force him to do his clinic hours or to take on cases. There is a lot of sexual tension between the two of them though neither would care to admit it. Cuddy is single and looking for love, she wants to settle down and have a baby but with a high-powered job and a liability like House on the staff it's amazing she gets time to sleep let alone date. She's straight-talking and stubborn, a lot like House but with a truck-load more tact.
Dr. Allison Cameron (Jennifer Morrison): The only woman on House's team, she is a very compassionate woman due to her own past tragedies and also has some unresolved sexual tension with House. As the only woman in the room most of the time she fights back as much as she needs to in order to be heard. House likes to joke about Cameron when it comes to dating and sexual matters, but she gives as good as she gets and impresses him with her confidence.
Dr. Robert Chase (Jesse Spencer): Chase is a lot like Wilson, which is probably why they get on so well and why House enjoys trying to mess with Chase too. He will work through the night if he needs to for a patient even if he's supposed to be off and is a level headed voice of reason in the team.
Dr. Eric Foreman (Omar Epps): The final member of the team, and the only African-American, he has to put up with a lot of crap from House who likes to send him on break-ins when trying to figure out what's wrong with a patient. Everyone there and watching knows it isn't due to racism which is probably why he hasn't tried to kill House yet. Foreman lives in a very black and white world of stereotypes, as show with his heartlessness towards a homeless woman early on in this first season. As far as he's concerned there is good and there is bad and there's nothing in-between. Though a cut-and-dry view of the world can be okay in other jobs it is not helpful in the moral and ethical confusion which is the hospital, and there are many times that Foreman clashes with House over his behaviour. If only he could see that all the things he hates in House aren't that far removed from Foreman's own personality traits.
Pilot: Kindergarten teacher Rebecca Adler is having a bad day, whilst teaching her class she starts to talk in gibberish rather than words. The children laugh thinking she is being funny, but when she falls to the floor and begins convulsing it becomes a case for Dr. House and his team who must figure out what is causing her symptoms before she completely deteriorates.
Paternity: A high school lacrosse player who suffers from night terrors and double vision comes into the hospital seeking help. He baffles the team and with House now proposing a retinal biopsy that could permanently blind the boy the race is on for his team to figure out other ways to treat him.
Occam's Razor: A college student goes into shock and collapses during a wild night of sex with his girlfriend (Probably not the reaction she was hoping for) and becomes a mystery at the hospital, his white cell count keeps dropping and there is no improvement with IV fluid. Meanwhile at the clinic House is truly infuriated by the walk-in cases, as is the norm.
Maternity: A virus spreads through the maternity ward infecting the newborn patients of the hospital. House has to do the unthinkable and test different babies for different diseases in order to try and save the majority. Will his risky treatment pay off or is there about to be a huge hospital scandal in the papers?
Damned If You Do: Clinic hours again for House, but his usually irritating duties are pushed aside when a nun comes in with red and swollen palms. Believing it to be an allergy she's given a shot to calm the swelling but then goes into cardiac arrest which Dr Cuddy believes is down to House giving too high a dosage. To both prove his innocence and save the young nun he runs a battery of strange treatments and digs into the sisters' life past and present.
The Socratic Method: An episode about families where a schizophrenic mother with DVT arrives with her overly protective son, suspecting that not only is the mother lying about her drinking but that the son is over-medicating her, House takes her off of all her meds and has the team break into their home and search for answers.
Fidelity: A patient with symptoms of a rare African sleeping sickness only transmitted sexually comes in, but when both she and her husband claim that they have never been unfaithful House and the team have to make up their own minds before the patient ends up dead.
Poison: After toxins send a boy into convulsions and hallucinations during a high school exam the team begin testing for known toxins and treating him. However when the tests come back clear and the boy gets worse his mother steps in and stops them from proceeding with further treatment until the CDC speak to her.
DNR: House gets a welcome surprise in the hospital when famous jazz trumpet player John Henry Giles is admitted for breathing problems. However House takes things to far and winds up facing a courtroom for ignoring his DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order and refusing to accept his patient dying a slow painful death without looking into more experimental treatments.
Histories: A tearjerker episode that shines a light on the problem of homelessness, a homeless woman collapses at a rave house and is admitted. Foreman decides that she is clearly faking her seizures in order to get food and a bed for the night but after being bit by the patient and her vanishing House and the team have to track her down uncovering her tragic past and a deeper look at Foreman and Wilson.
Detox: A Porsche ends up in a bad way after the drivers boyfriend begins coughing up blood. As the bleeds continue House and the team attempt to discover the cause, but due to a challenge by Cuddy, House has accepted a bet that he can stop taking Vicodin (and if he does he doesn't have to work in the clinic for a whole month) and as his cravings get more and more severe so do his treatments for the bleeding boy.
Sports Medicine: A pitcher with a drug-addicted past and a bizarre case of brittle bones intrigues House after he breaks his arm in an unpleasant scene shooting a commercial. House thinks that as always, his patient is lying and is still on drugs. House also has to deal with clinic patients having lost the bet and decides that if he must do clinic hours, he will treat people as fast as humanly possible.
Cursed: If an Ouija board predicted you were going to die you'd probably just laugh it off, if only House's latest patient could do that. He's admitted to the hospital with a fever and a strange rash and it is presumed to be a simple case of pneumonia, but all is not well and what looked like a simple case turns into a medical conundrum where the answer could be anthrax, allergies, an autoimmune disease...or worse.
Control: As the new head of the hospital board tries to make themselves known throughout the episode House meets a seemingly confident female executive who is hiding a fragile heart - that is actually broken. The problem is that she can't get the transplant that will save her because she self harms and suffers with bulimia.
Mob Rules: House covers the case of a Mafia man who has collapsed before taking the stand, when he figures out the cause of his problem House has to question something about the mobster that could get the pair of them in deep trouble if found out. Back in the clinic a guy looking after his younger brother comes in when there is a blockage in his nose, with surprising results.
Heavy: An obese ten year old girl suffers a heart attack, and the girl's mother begs the team to look past her weight to figure out the true cause, leading House to believe that the little girl's weight is a symptom rather than the cause of her current medical issues. Meanwhile new head of the board Vogler throws his weight around, trying to force House to fire one of his team. Finally in the clinic we see that beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder when a woman with a huge tumour on her ovaries refuses to have surgery to remove it for fear that she will be unattractive without it, leading House to really put his foot in it with some obvious comments even the viewer is thinking!
Role Model: House has to think about politics and scandal when an African-American senator who is running for president collapses during a fundraiser. House has to give the man some very bad life-altering news which would destroy his campaign but the patient is determined not to believe it is the truth. Vogler is still determined to make his presence felt and tries to force House to give a speech in favour of a drug made by Volga's company - you can bet House isn't planning to do what is expected.
Babies & Bathwater: Babies are the hot topic when one patient refuses to have treatment for cancer fearing the harm it will do to her unborn baby, whilst another couple at the hospital are arrested after it is found out that they have had their baby on a raw vegan diet (the parents seem oddly surprised that a baby would get ill from this). Elsewhere after all of House's insubordination recently Vogler wants House fired - Will Cuddy finally be free of the stress that is Dr Gregory House?
Kids: There's a meningitis outbreak in the hospital and while all the doctors are working to help the patients House finds himself drawn to one patient whose symptoms don't quite match, though everyone else believe he just has meningitis like the rest of the patients House is determined to figure out the cause and treatment that will save the young race drivers life.
Love Hurts: Today's patient is certainly a little odd - a 21-year-old who after appointments with many holistic doctors suffers a stroke. This would be a cut and dry case if it wasn't for one rather large question - was the stroke caused by the holistic medicine or by his dominatrix girlfriend? Also up for discussion is House's date with team member Cameron, will it be a complete disaster or the start of a beautiful romance...like anyone really needs to ask.
Three Stories: Here is an enlightening episode where House covers a class filled with medical students and decides to tell them three case studies about leg pain, bizarre as it is the students learn that they will have to work hard to be better doctors and House's team learn about House's past and a little of why he is the way he is. Unfortunately for House this isn't his only activity of the day; his ex-wife comes into the hospital and asks him to treat her new husband. Awkward!
The Honeymoon: The tests on Mark (House's ex-wife's new husband) have come back clear, there is apparently nothing wrong with him and he happily checks out of the hospital and away from House. But Stacy refuses to believe there is nothing wrong and implores House to help. With a little wine he manages to get him back into the hospital but is House taking out his anger at ex-wife Stacy on Mark?
Fun Facts About House
For those who enjoy this sort of thing here are a few lesser known facts about House:
- When Hugh Laurie made his audition tape he had to do it in a hotel bathroom whilst he was shooting for film "Flight Of The Phoenix" - it would later be likened to a Bin Laden video due to the low light and odd surroundings.
- Bryan Singer thought that Hugh Laurie was American until told otherwise.
-Other people going for the part of Gregory House were Denis Leary (Thank god they didn't go with him otherwise I'd never have watched) and Patrick Dempsey (You know, the guy in the L'Oreal adverts - the unspeakably gorgeous one!).
-House's apartment number 221B is a sneaky reference to Sherlock Holmes' address.
-Dr. Robert Chase was not originally written for anyone other than an American; Jesse's agent persuaded them to rewrite the character as Australian for his client.
-The image of a Vicodin bottle was supposed to be in the opening title sequence but Fox were not happy with this featuring.
-If you go to Housecharitytees.com and you're lucky you'll be able to snag a t-shirt with a classic line on with the proceeds going to the charity National Alliance on Mental Illness (Though they are limited edition so if there are none now, check back every now and then as they like to raise money for the NAMI as much as possible).
Why Should You Watch This?
If you enjoy mysteries, puzzles and piecing together clues you will enjoy House. This could be likened to CSI in the way that a case is presented, clues are searched for and a conclusion is made. The difference here is the cases involve live people and the killers aren't people but diseases.
There are plenty of characters to love and care about with pasts that unfold throughout this and the later seasons. The relationships between the characters are all rather different and go through strains as they would in real life, though in real life I'm sure someone would have had House fired by now!
This show could have been boring if the only focus was on the patient, what was wrong with them and treating them. But in this show you see the history of the patient, both good and bad, and more importantly the characters in the series are given well-written pasts that the viewer is privy to as the seasons go on. In many medical shows there isn't much focus on the doctors themselves and their personal lives or flaws, but here they are allowed to be as important as the cases.
The main reason you should watch House is for the title character Dr. Gregory House. He's arrogant, self-serving, drug-addicted and mean, but also witty, smart and determined to save his patients. For all his flaws, and he has some huge ones, he is an immensely lovable character. Though just reading a review about it won't show it, you really have to see him in action to see why he is so appealing.
When this show began I was ready to watch in curiosity - partly to see if Hugh Laurie could play a straight role with an American accent well as I had known him for his comedic roles. It was also appealing that it was different to the biggest medical drama at the time (ER).
Upon watching this I was surprised and overjoyed to see that Hugh Laurie really is an amazing actor who can play more than just the funny man. His American accent wasn't cheesy and was very believable, as was his insanely flawed character that is so rude but so wonderful all at once.
Almost instantly I was hooked on the show and wanted to see what would happen, not just with the cases but with the doctors too. It was clear that there was more beneath the surface of these characters and I was happy to wait to find out the mad, bad and sad things that had happened in their pasts. And I sat (and still do sit) glued to the screen waiting for the moment when House turns his head to the side or his eyes glint and you just know he's figured out the case. It's always something tiny and seemingly insignificant that gets his attention and its fun to try and figure out what it will be that gives away the diagnosis - more often than not I've been wrong but I've enjoyed it nonetheless.
This show isn't cold and clinical, and though they use a lot of medical jargon it's made very clear to the viewer what they are talking about. They even got to the effort of running scripts by several people in the medical profession before filming to make sure they are correct. This is an emotional show that makes you feel for all it's characters, and has had me reaching for tissues to dry my eyes when I've gotten a little weepy (Especially the episode Histories where there are many sad stories told - including the heartbreaking one by the patient). There aren't many shows that can make me shed a tear but this one has managed to a few times every season, I think that is a sign of great writing and fantastically emotional dialogue and performances by the actors.
In conclusion if you love a good mystery - whether that be Columbo, Sherlock Holmes or CSI - or have a fondness for medical shows, this is a show you should catch. Currently season 4 is showing on freeview channel FIVE US but unless you have watched the previous seasons I'd recommend you buy the DVD and catch up, because you find out more and more about the characters as time goes on it may not make as much sense if you throw yourself into the fourth season.
I loved this first season and it now has pride of place in my huge DVD collection, hopefully this might persuade a few more people to make the same decision (Especially as it's come down in price on every website and can be had for around £8-12).
DVD Information & Extras
The first season of House is 22 episodes long and is spread over 6 disks. There is 926 minutes approx of viewing including the small array of extras on the final disk. The season is rated at a 15 though to be honest if it's shown to younger viewers I don't think it will do much harm unless they are a little squeamish or not mature enough to understand some of the moral dilemmas that crop up - if that's the case they are going to find this show boring because it won't make too much sense, though they'll enjoy watching House insult people. This has very little violence and nudity, bad language is used but I've heard much worse.
The DVD extras are rather short on this first box set, which is a shame but the extra's chosen are good.
Dr House: In depth look at the title character House with interview footage and classic clips.
Medical Cases: A look back at the medical cases featured in the season with commentary and interview from the shows medical consultant/writer. For anyone who wonders about how close to reality these medical shows can be if done right, this is a feature to watch.
The Concept: A short interview with the makers of House talking about how they came up with the idea for the show.
Set Tour: Look behind the scenes of the hospital with a guided tour which shows how much really has to go on backstage for filming to take place.
HOUSE-isms: A piece featuring clips from the season of House-isms, those lines that are so quintessentially House. It's interspersed with commentary from the entire main cast. This is a fun short piece to watch that will make you laugh.
Casting Session With Hugh Laurie: A 7 minute piece about casting with Hugh Laurie, it's nice to see him talk in his real accent and speaks candidly about getting the part.
House is a medical show which began in 2004 and aired on the Fox network in America. Set in the Princeton Plainsboro Teaching Hospital, New Jersey, the show is based around Dr Gregory House (Hugh Laurie), who can be described as being a drug addict, a medical genius and mystery solver and an abrasive man who is blunt and to the point, yet somehow still endearing as a character. House, as he is referred to in the show, is a somewhat dichotomous man, who appears strong in spirit and medical expertise yet weak in body. House suffered a blood clot in his leg which cause muscle death and as such he walks with his trademark cane from the beginning of this season.
House is the head of a team of doctors who form the Diagnostic Medicine department. Often treating only one patient per episode, the team are usually presented with what appears like an easy diagnosis however always turns out to be much more complex. Often the ailment is so elusive, the patient is misdiagnosed and mistreated at least once before the correct illness is diagnosed. Using what I consider the famous whiteboard, House and his team write up a series of seemingly unconnected symptoms and add and detract from this list until they find the correct condition. The fellow members of the team are Dr. Eric Foreman (Omar Epps), a neurologist; Dr. Robert Chase (Jesse Spencer), an intensivist; and Dr. Allison Cameron (Jennifer Morrison), an immunologist. The relationships between the characters are a perfect mix of traditional professional work relationship and unprofessional aspects. For example House mentions numerous times throughout the series that a key reason he hired Dr Foreman was because he committed a crime when he was younger and as such House thinks he will be an asset in breaking into patients homes in order to search for toxins and environmental causes for illness.
There are two other important characters, the first of which is Dr Lisa Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein), the Dean of Medicine who often comes to logger heads with House as he tries to conceal medical decisions which could impact on the hospital due to their risky nature. There is a great chemistry however between the characters and we are lead to believe that they have been romantically involved in the past. The second character is Dr James Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard), the head of Oncology and House's 'best friend'. I say best friend tentatively because House appears to find it hard to mix well with people and whilst Wilson is the person he interacts best with, it still at times seems as if there is a barrier between the two.
Hugh Laurie does an outstanding job portraying the complex character that is Dr Gregory House. I never doubt his acting in this series and the sincerity of his acting reels me into the show until I am fully engrossed. The actors portraying the members of his team interact well with each other and all perform well, however the best in my opinion is Jennifer Morrison. I adore the acting of Robert Leonard and Lisa Edelsteing, they both interact so well with the Hugh Laurie and the three of them pull off some really great scenes.
Overall I give this a 5/5 because I cannot fault the show. It really must be seen to be appreciated and after watching the first season I am now hooked and about to move onto the second. I love the fact that this programme is not overly gory as some medical dramas can tend to be! The dvds for this season are relatively cheap, retailing at £14.99 on hmv.com (price stated as of the 21/08/09). The show is also currently airing on channel five at around 11am on weekdays.
I am a Johnny-Come-Lately on the House M.D. Scene. A friend of mine recommended it to me as a CSI Fan, and I think he was right. Fans of the forensic based puzzle show will really get on well with House.
It's not a just a Hospital drama. If you're looking for that, go watch Grey's Anatomy. House has an edge to it that you don't find in many TV Shows these days. The central character, Dr. Gregory House, is not a likeable man. He's rude, obnoxious, and a Vicodin dependant, but he's deeply complex, has a subtle charm and is the best at what he does. It's refreshing to have a title character be so outspoken and not robotically designed to please.
The supporting cast are all wonderful, and they too are not 2D models of American Shinyness! The storylines are great, thrilling, and great to work out for yourself.
The DVD boxset is very nicely priced for a 22 Episode season, and includes bonus features on Disc 6. The only downside to this boxset is that once you start watching it, you realise that 22 hours of House isn't enough, and have to order Season 2!!!
Hugh Laurie with an American accent was something that I thought might be interesting when I first heard about the series. I suppose really that's why I turned it on in the first place. That and I quite like medical dramas if they're well acted and written so it's always good to give a new one a look.
House is not 'just' another medical drama - yes, on the face of it, that's what you're getting, a team of people in a hospital diagnosing cases and trying to save lives. The difference with this series is partly how it's set up - this team deals with the 'interesting' cases - the ones no one else can figure out, so there's very little of the broken bones, accidents and regular illnesses you normally meet in hospital dramas. The other thing that makes it quite different (and for me particularly appealing) is that the lead character Dr House (Hugh Laurie) is a strong personality and his attitude isn't what you might expect in a series like this.
The concept of a Dr who has a disability also appealed to me because I am disabled myself, so to start watching it, and find that he's an arrogant, caustic, rude man who treats his staff and friends badly, pops pills constantly was well to be honest a bit of a shock really. The thing is, even though he really shouldn't be even vaguely likeable, somehow he is and that's kind of the thing that makes you come back again and again. Add in a few other characters who are pretty varied but a bit more ordinary and see the way they respond to him, and I have to say it hooked me 100%.
As well as House, there are five other main people who we meet as part of the hospital staff and those surrounding House, The three people on his diagnositc team - Cameron, Foreman and Chase each of whom we do sort of begin to get to know in this series, but not really in any depth. Then there are Cuddy - she's House's boss, and the hospital administrator, and Wilson who is an Oncologist working in the same hospital and House's best friend. There is some fantastic play between the characters and I really love the way they've portrayed the friendship between House and Wilson as being a little bit one sided. Both Wilson and Cameron, and to some extent Cuddy all seem to have this need for needy people and so the way they see House as needy when he's trying to be pompous and self centred is quite amusing too.
I watched the whole season on TV, then we bought the dvd and I've watched it again 2 or 3 times since. Now the first time I saw it all I really loved it, and to be honest I did wonder how they were going to keep matching that kind of high drama and caustic attitude when they went to the next series, but having seen series 2 (as well as 3 and 4), I don't now think this is the best season because in later season's the ongoing characters have been developed a bit more which means you have more interest in them as people and that they're able to create background storylines as well as the main focus of an ill person who needs curing in each episode. I do still think that the series is most enjoyable - I suppose though that you might guess I would think that having seen it several times now.
American TV's produced some complicated heroes in the last few years. While not quite as daring as serial killing forensics man Dexter, House is up there with the most unlikely leading men on TV.
On the face of it House is just another medical drama - a team of doctors diagnose patients' illnesses in a race against time before the end of the episode. But what sets this series apart is Hugh Laurie (previously better known to British audiences as foppish toff George in Blackadder), who is a revelation as the title character. Greg House is rude, insults patients (when he can actually be bothered to see them), frankly discusses his use of prostitutes and abuses his staff. He is also disabled, with a botched operation leading to a severe and painful limp, which he self-medicates with vicidin (which he also happens to be addicted to).
House is a brilliant character, full of acerbic wit and sarcasm, and you can't help cheering him on in his non-PC interactions with staff and patients.
Series one has some great episodes, but isn't the best series - the episodes are at their most formulaic in the first season (patient comes in, House's team suggest lupus and/or sarcoidosis, they get treated, it doesn't work and it goes horribly wrong, House realises what it is, they get treated, it works, the end). The characterisation of House's stooges, his employees Doctors Cameron, Foreman and Chase, aren't yet fully formed yet, and will be epxlored further in later seasons.
But all in all this is a well-written series with a brilliant lead performance, that anyone who liked medical mysteries or simply good US drama will love.
The box set also comes with a range of behind the scenes documentaries, that are well worth a look.
Don't let the accent put you off! Much has been written about Hugh Laurie's American accent in House - Americans don't seem to like it, Brits seem to think it's an outrage that one half of Fry and Laurie is pandering to the Yanks - but forget about the accent (which really doesn't bother me in the slightest) and enjoy what must be one of the funniest, cleverest and at times yukkiest (really, if you're squeamish have a cushion to hide behind close by) TV series to have been made in a long while. Hugh Laurie is superb as the miserly Greg House, a cane-wielding diagnostician who lives by the motto 'Everybody Lies'. The rest of the cast are also brilliant, particularly Robert Sean Leonard who has drawn the short straw as House's best friend. The plots and subplots are endlessly inventive and the dialogue is razor sharp. If you haven't seen this already, go out and buy it now!
I'm not a big TV fan and the last time I was fairly addicted to a TV series and watched more than the odd episode was probably way back yonder in the days of The X Files. Not only that, but I have many happy childhood memories of watching Casualty as a kid, glorious with its wobbly sets, wooden acting and predictable story lines and never did I consider that an over-hyped American comedy/drama would ever make my affection of the British institution that is dodgy hospital dramas waver. Oh, how wrong I was!
I first found myself tuning into House MD on channel 5 one evening as I was channel hopping for a bit before bed and found myself instantly falling for Hugh Laurie's depiction of Dr. House, the guy we all love to hate.
When I think of Hugh Laurie, my mind tends to hop to an image of him playing a foppish Royal in Blackadder the Third and so I was shocked to see him looking ruggedly handsome and talking in a rather shockingly convincing American accent. I must admit, I felt a little betrayed at first...Hugh Laurie belongs to us Brits, surely! By the end of the first episode I had, however, relented. I suppose the Americans can borrow him since House MD does rather have the edge on Casualty.
Season One introduces us to the following main characters:
-Dr. Gregory House: An arrogant, Vicodin addicted Doctor of Diagnostic Medicine with ascorbic with and no manners.
-Dr. James Wilson: An oncologist working at the same teaching hospital as House and also House's best friend. He is the antitheseis of House-rediculousy nice and helpful and submissive to almost all of House's whims.
-Dr. Allison Cameron: An immunoligist on House's team. She's kind and sensitive and in love with House.
-Dr. Eric Foreman: A neuroligist on House's team who's not afraid to stand up to House.
-Dr. Robert Chase: The third member of House's team who was previously training for the priesthood before falling into medicine instead.
-Dr. Cuddy: The hospital administrator and House's boss. She's constantly locked in a battle of wills with House over something or other.
House and his team work out of Princeton Plainsboro teaching hospital and are sent the cases that nobody else can solve. Often the symptoms mislead and the patient's lie making diagnosis difficult and often leading to further complications. Dr. House is difficult and arrogant, accepting only cases he's interested in and refusing to speak to patients face to face whenever possible. He's rude and bullying with his team and even more so with the patients, yet despite all his unpleasant character traits, his wit and his ability to almost always be right makes him somewhat loveable.
Season One of House MD introduces us to the characters during the course of the episodes, letting us learn about their backgrounds and what drives them to do what they do, but its the medical cases that make the show most interesting as they are full of twists and turns and unexpected complications. House MD is almost like a medical version of CSI where the solution is slowly unravelled with the intelligence of House steering both his team and the audience through to the end.
Medical cases in Season One include a homeless woman with unexplained seizures, a baseball player with bone problems, a kindergarten teacher who starts speaking incoherantly and a woman with African sleeping sickness. The simplest explanation for simples is never the answer and the myriad of possibilities presented throughout keep us hooked. There is also plenty of ethical dilemmas for the viewer to get their teeth into, especially as House can be an inherantly unethical character who wishes to solve the puzzle of the case regardless of whether that is best for the patient or not.
The writing is spectacular. Witty and intelligent throughout with great interplay between characters.
Season One contains 22 episodes as well as bonus features. The bonus features are somewhat disappointing and include a set tour and a very short clip of Hugh Laurie's casting session.
The Season One box set RRPs at £49.99, but is available currently on play.com for £12.99 or from Zavvi for £15.
Is there a downside to House MD? Only that I'll never be able to enjoy an episode of Casualty quite as easily ever again!
"Watch House, watch House!" so my friends have urged me for a while. I was sceptical. What and who was this 'House'? I wasn't impressed by initial adverts and posters.
Oh boy, and did I realise it was the best show on Earth?! Yes I did. House M.D. stole my heart and soul.
Dr. Gregory House, the main character of the series, is played by non other than the British born actor Hugh Laurie, who instantly became famous for his ability to speak in the American accent. Bitter, selfish, ignorant and plus many other negative serious flaws, Dr. House, is a genius diagnostician, with double specialty of infectious diseases and nephrology (kidneys). The show begins with his limping, of his remarks about ill-doctors, ill-patients, and his general views of the World which turns out to be of misery, boredom and depression.
Episode after episode however, I was dazzled by his genius, his ability to solve impossible cases, saving those who would have died without him. I almost wished he was real.
Brilliantly acted by Mr. Laurie, Dr. House can not be more real than himself. He deals with the World, as he deals with himself, of depression and negative thoughts, which in most cases, turns out to be true. However, with the help of bright 3 doctors on his side, and of course Dr. Wilson and Dr. Cuddy, Dr. House is able to gain, a some light of a brightness in life.
He pops pills, watches soaps, and always, always says what's on his mind. He's Dr. Gregory House (Emmy nominee Hugh Laurie, Blackadder). Producers David Shore, Bryan Singer, Katie Jacobs, and Paul Attanasio haven't rewritten the hospital drama, but they've infused a moribund genre with new life and created one of TV's most compelling characters. More than any previous medical procedural, it resembles Attanasios underrated Gideon's Crossing, but House is lighter on its feet. As fascinating as he is, the show wouldn't work as well if it were all House all the time (that would be like Sherlock Holmes without Watson or Moriarty). Fortunately, he's joined by an intriguing cast of characters, portrayed by a combination of experienced vets (Omar Epps, Lisa Edelstein, Tony winner Robert Sean Leonard) and new faces (Jennifer Morrison, Jesse Spencer). Aside from the complicated cases they tackle each week, the sparks really fly when House's brilliant, if naïve charges are put to the test--and as the head of a teaching hospital, it's his job to test them (although his tough love approach is constantly landing him in hot water with Edelstein's administrator). From the first episode, House attracted a talented array of guests, including Robin Tunney ("Pilot"), Joe Morton ("Role Model"), and Patrick Bauchau ("Cursed") as Spencers father. In addition, Chi McBride and Sela Ward appear frequently (with Ward returning for the second season). Viewers who first watched these 22 episodes will be gratified to note that the music has survived the transition to disc, such as the Rolling Stones' "You Can't Always Get What You Want," as featured in both the pilot and season finale ("Honeymoon"). The only apparent omission is the credit theme (Massive Attack's "Teardrop") from the pilot. --Kathleen C. Fennessy