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House, M.D. and Other Television.

There are two reasons why I dig House, M.D.

The first of these is Hugh Laurie. A narrow, bent man struggling through the white hallways with the aid of cane and disguising his passion with cynicism, the show is his.

The second was last week's episode, where they killed a baby with a flip of a coin. More importantly, however, this dead baby became the centre of the episode's medical mystery, and thus its death and following autopsy were crucial to the survival of the other babies. I liked that. Any show that can have it's main character flip a coin to decide which baby will get which drug, and then proceed to have the dead baby cut open so that the doctors learn what's wrong (in short becoming the breakthrough of the case) gets my attention.

Of course, maybe they've been killing babies like this on tv for years. Truth is, I haven't paid this much attention to what's on since I was in High School, though I don't think I've missed any fine and excellent baby killing shows. The overall quality of TV is much the same as it was ten years ago, with a few things worth watching, and a lot of pretty people and plastic sets for things I don't dig. Plus, Oprah is still round. Still, there has been a slow swing away from reality tv to script and actor shows, which is nice. The difference for me, however, is that cinema is absolute shit at the moment.

I know cinema has never been perfect, but where are the dead baby movies? I'm probably more open to the Speculative Fiction, comic adapted films than most of the public, but I've seriously had enough.

So, I've been jumping TV channels. I started with Lost, but got bored, though I jumped back for the death of Boone. Don't look at me like that. It was mostly boring, anyhow, with the show apparently giving a back flash to give us the symbolic nature of Jack's last name, which is Shepherd. Subtle. Real subtle. I can just imagine the script writers sitting around, talking about the characters, and one says, "Hey, we need a name for the character who becomes... becomes, you know, their, like, leader? We need a name."

"Jeez. That's tough."

"Yeah, I know. I know. We already called one Locke. He knows all about the island, but doesn't want to share."

"Have we got a character called Key to fuck him in the ass yet?"

"Season two."

"Right."

Silence. Pens tap. Coffee is drunk. Finally, one says, "Fuck it, lets just call him Shepherd."

I thought that the least they could have done was chop Boone's leg off with that hideous piece of island made machinery. Is it too much to ask? Chop chop. At any rate, I got bored with Lost. I'm getting bored with Boston Legal because when William Shatner is not in the scene, I'm struggling to find interest. Spader is okay for the moment, but what really bores me are all the plastic beautiful people around Shatner and Spader, and the fact that each episode, on it's own, doesn't have any bite to it. Perhaps I was wrong to think there ever would be.

So I've landed on House. As with Boston Legal, the cast around Laurie are all the plastic beautiful, and with the exception of Omar Epps, struggle to have any emotion outside plastic and beautiful. Perhaps this is something that describes American television: shows that are populated by central characters who are abrasive and unpleasant and interesting to watch, but who are surrounded by what might as well be mannequins. There's a show in that, I think. I'd really tune in for something that had Hugh Laurie and a cast of plastic, genital smooth mannequins that walked around.

What is currently saving House, however, is that the plots are proving to be more interesting than that of the previous two shows and that Laurie, always a more than capable comedian, is excellent with the humour. Of course, it could be that I have simply been show a fine episode directed by Bryan Singer, and another episode, which while a bit clunky, gave me a dead baby. In a couple of weeks, I could be bored and moving on to another show which, lets face it, is entirely possible.

I offer no loyalty.

Comments

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coalescent
Jul. 19th, 2005 07:34 am (UTC)
People have been trying to get me to watch House. I've been dipping in and out, but nothing's made me a confirmed viewer yet. They didn't mention that there was baby-killing, though.

I was persuaded to download 1x21, 'Three Stories', which is very good and works as a standalone. I'd seek out that before you get bored. But one of the reasons it works is that it's a format-breaker, so it still hasn't got me to watch the show regularly.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:25 am (UTC)
i haven't seen the 1X21. i'll have to wait, i guess. the problem with me is that i'm on dialup and therefor don't really have the time for downloading tv episodes. it'd be nice if i could. i'd like to check out veronica mars and deadwood, for example.

anyhow, i've no idea if i'll stay with HOUSE. time'll tell.
joey_j0jo
Jul. 19th, 2005 07:44 am (UTC)
I flip through House when Big Brother cuts into my NCIS time. Yes, I watch NCIS it's great. Nice icon by the way, B.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:26 am (UTC)
NCIS?

thank you on the icon love. it's a busy little thing, but okay. not as cool as yours though, i don't think.
deborahb
Jul. 19th, 2005 07:47 am (UTC)
Damn, I wanted to see that House episode. Forgot to set the tape. Well, I'm glad to hear they went through with the baby murder.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:27 am (UTC)
the baby murder was good. there was also baby autopsy. that was also good.
angriest
Jul. 19th, 2005 08:32 am (UTC)
House lost me for the same reason as Boston Legal. Whenever Hugh Laurie isn't talking, I've fallen asleep from the tedious formula of the show. Which is a pity, because in many respects House is a great show.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
i kind of hope that the show will begin breaking from the formula, but maybe it won't. to be honest i don't find the formula that bad, possibly because i've grown use to shows like this being very forumla based for its plots. standard murder she wrote business.
nihilistic_kid
Jul. 19th, 2005 03:24 pm (UTC)
They zapped the formula to pieces in the season finale.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 11:53 pm (UTC)
neat.
catvalente
Jul. 19th, 2005 08:37 am (UTC)
Even better? His father's name is Christian Shepherd.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
aw, man. someone ought to be beaten.
angriest
Jul. 20th, 2005 05:34 am (UTC)
I always figured Locke was named after the philisopher.
benpeek
Jul. 20th, 2005 05:55 am (UTC)
i've always seen it as a label, an indication of the function that the character has in the show. my theory (and i don't subscribe to it much) is that there's a textual element to the show, that its so called secrets are hidden in names, numbers, and texts that various characters have. i haven't really fleshed it out because i don't much care, but that's it. so you have locke, shepherd, and sawyer, a name that connections to being inbetween, either cutting through something as a saw, or going from one side to another, like a saw.
scarlet_arts
Jul. 19th, 2005 09:52 am (UTC)
Don't lie. You watch House because Jesse Spencer used to be on Neighbours.

You're so transparent.
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:31 am (UTC)
i was wondering where the australian guy came from.

but yes, you've caught me out. i'm a huge neighbours fan. i just love that show, with its plastic sets, and plotlines like toady becoming a suicide bomber. just love it. will he blow himself up next week and leave the cast covered in scraps of toady flesh?

i can only hope :)
scarlet_arts
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:32 am (UTC)
I must have missed that storyline :)
benpeek
Jul. 19th, 2005 10:37 am (UTC)
it's really beautiful. that guy from big brother realised he was useless and set himself on fire. i wept.
ex_benpayne119
Jul. 20th, 2005 01:05 am (UTC)
I must admit I've been feeling impatient with most TV lately, and have pretty much lost interest in all three shows you mention, for pretty much the same reasons as you... they have one or two interesting aspects, but in general the writing, particularly with regard to supporting cast, just seems lazy...

i thought it was just me... good to know there's another television curmudgeon out there!

benpeek
Jul. 20th, 2005 04:27 am (UTC)
i don't so much as find the writing of the supporting cast lazy, as just everything about the supporting cast to be lazy. lazy and beautiful in a boring way.

but yes, i am a tv curmudgeon. plus a movie curmedgeon, plus a book... well, i'm sure you get the idea.
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