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House: Alone

House Episode 4-01C : Alone

Airdate Sep 25, 2007

This is a capsule review : it will be supplemented soon by a full review.

The Hook:

A boyfriend calls his office worker girlfriend from outside her office building urging her to get off work to go to a movie. She tells him she's swamped with work, and maybe he should go alone. A vibration shakes the building and she asks her boyfriend it there's an earthquake (in New Jersey?). Suddenly the building collapses in a blinding cloud of dust.

Act 1

House plays his new electric guitar - like the jerk he often is : in his office, with an amp and speakers, not headphones. The next scene should be his coworkers storming the office and smashing the guitar (homage to the Who). But no, it's Cuddy, asking him to stop playing and do his job, diagnosing the young woman the building fell on. A building fell on her : what's to diagnose? Doesn't account for the 104 degree fever. Cuddy says he's unable to diagnose without the Hice as his sounding board, so would he get off his derriere and hire some new Hice already? House says he can go it alone and makes Cuddy one of his bets that don't really risk anything but having to do the job he's supposed to be doing anyway. When he's alone and trying to do it, however, he discovers he really does need someone to bounce ideas off and recruits the nearest person available : the janitor.

The janitor is into the role : until that is, he is asked to break into the young woman and her boyfriend's house, and draws the line at breaking and entering. So House recruits Wilson to go alone instead. House searched the, er, house, while Wilson mostly makes pithy comments and cuts up a newspaper. House reads the girl's diary, and discovers some evidence of discontent with her boyfriend, which could mean depression, which could mean anti-depressive drugs, which could interact with the drugs she's been given to cause the high fever.

Returning to the hospital, House meets the woman's mother, Mrs Bradberry, played by Kaye Lenz, who's looking old and since she's the same age as me, how do you think that makes me feel? I hope it's makeup. House asks her to allow dialysis of her blood to remove the antidepressants which are causing the fever. Both Mrs. Bradberry and Ben, the boyfriend, who's also there, claim that Megan, the young woman, wasn't depressed. Nevertheless, Mrs. Bradberry reluctantly agrees. We se Megan and she's really battered from the collapse, face swollen and intubated, and not able to talk.

House returns to his office to find that his guitar has been kidnapped, and a ransom note, formed by words cut out of a newspaper demands that he interview and hire some new subordinates as a condition of getting it back.

Before House can dismantle Wilson, he is summonsed to Megan's room where she's been struck by heart arrhythmia.

Act 2

House says he's solved the riddle of collapsed-building woman. Cuddy says, but there's a new symptom, heart arrhythmia. House reluctantly takes a stack of resumes to read.

House tries a new diagnosis out on Ben and Mrs. Bradberry : alcoholism, reacting with the drugs Megan has been given to cause the arrhythmia. Ben and Mrs. Bradberry protest that Megan has never had a problem with alcohol. House says the treatment is intravenous alcohol, which she'll slowly be weaned off of. Ben and Mrs. Bradberry snap at each other over their apparent lack of knowledge of daughter/lover.

House phones a Hice candidate : Trevor : who sounds immature over the phone. House sighs.

House has Wilson paged so he (House) can search Wilson's home, but does not find the guitar there. As Wilson rushes home to confront House, he finds him threatening to erase Wilson's Tivo'd telenovellas ("I'm learning Spanish"). As House presses the fatal button, Wilson screams "No! Not the season finale!" Guess some Spanish lessons are more gripping than others.

Cuddy advises Ben and Mrs. Bradberry that Megan is responding to the treatment. But the silent semicomatose patient is making strange mouth-movements. "I think she's screaming" says Cuddy.

Act 3

House again claims a successful diagnosis. But now there's silent screaming and pancreatitus, Cuddy responds. "You need a team."

House storms into Wilson's office and tosses a box on the desk. It contains a guitar part, seemingly ripped off House's Fender, along with a threatening note from the ‘kidnapper'. Wilson asks House is he's ever heard the sound a guitar makes when the strings are tightened too tight : "almost like a scream."

Wilson joins House in the MRI room as House examines the patient, and begins to analyze House, claiming he doesn't want to hire a team because he got too emotionally involved with the last one, and can't bear the possibility of forming another one only to lose them as well. The patient develops a new symptom, internal bleeding from five areas.

House and Cuddy watch from the observation balcony as an operating team fights to stop the bleeding. House begins to query the operating doctors on the patients symptoms. Cuddy tells them "Don't enable him." From the balcony, House spots an anomaly, and quickly scrubs in and joins the team on the OR floor to examine it further : an enlarged uterus.

House concludes that Megan has had an abortion, which both Mom and boyfriend deny. House guesses his patient was on the pill, which they also hotly deny, which could account, in interaction with the drugs she's been given, for the bleeding.

In a retaliatory act, House "kidnaps" one of Wilson's cancer patients, moving him to another room to extort his guitar back from Wilson.

Later, Cuddy asks House if all his diagnoses have been correct, why is the patient crashing?

Act 4

In frustration, House invades the ER, calling out symptoms and asking for responses. But Cuddy's ahead of him and has sent a memo telling staff not to cooperate with House. (Q. Isn't this taking bureaucratic infighting to the point of endangering patients?) Finally on cute female ER doctor responds. House asks if she's looking for a job, and tells her to send him her resume.

House talks to Ben and Mrs. Bradberry. He tells them the woman they both loved doesn't exist, she's taken antidepressants, drinks too much, and has had an abortion, unknown to either of them. Ben is incredulous that all this could be going on unknown in his live-in lover.

House says she's dying and all they can do is support her with the dialysis to keep her as comfortable as possible. But then he discovers a new symptom : a lump in her arm. In fact, an MRI shows multiple lumps though out her body. A lab analysis shows the lumps are not cancer, but an allergic reaction to cephalasporin. But Megan ahs taken this drug before with no reaction.

Wilson confronts House about the missing patient. At first, House plays him along, but Wilson says he's concerned his missing patient might get the wrong meds, and this strikes a familiar note with House. He gives Wilson the room number of his patient and rushes to wake his patient and interrogate her. House has finally realized that he's been treating the wrong patient.

House tells Ben and Mrs. Bradberry that he was wrong, Megan never lied to them, did not take antidepressants, or use alcohol to excess, and has never had an abortion. Unfortunately, she died in the collapse, and the woman they've been worrying over is a similar-looking coworker, Liz, who had been thought dead. Leaving them to grieve, he returns to his office. Cuddy gently chides him, telling how having Cameron, Chase, or Foreman there would have led him to the correct conclusion sooner,

We see House interviewing candidates while strumming his somewhat-mangled guitar. As the camera pans back, we see he's interviewing a whole roomful of candidates.

- Cecil

Next week: House channels Donald Trump as he interviews whole swarms of possible Hice. "Row D, you're fired! No make that Row C!" House seems to hallucinate Foreman, Chase and Cameron sightings around the hospital.


Prev. Episode: 3-24 Human Error - 05/29/07
Next Episode: 4-02 The Right Stuff - 10/02/07

Guest Cast Ep. 4-01, "Alone" Aired 09/25/2007

Liliya Toneva……………….(Liz)
Kay Lenz……………………(Mrs. Bradberry)
Conor Dubin………………...(Ben)
Bevin Prince……………….. (Megan)
Pat Millicano………………. (Leon)
Kathryn Adams (II)…………(Young Doctor)
Ken Takemoto………………(Sam Lee)
Leo Vargas………………….(Male Nurse)
Maurice Godin…………….. (Dr. Hourani)
Shannon McClung…………..(Doug)

Posted by Cecil on October 2, 2007 12:20 AM
Permalink |

The new House format is driving me crazy; he really needs to bring his old team back soon. I watched this week's episode last night, and found it a little to comical this season. Do you agree? I am a die hard House fan, but so far this new season I am's still good though, just not as good.

-- 1. Posted by: meg at October 4, 2007 2:48 PM


Nice to have you here. Looks like the old team will be back, just not as the team. Since the lack of team allows more time for Wilson and Cuddy I'm not too disappointed.

-- 2. Posted by: Cecil Rose at October 10, 2007 2:38 PM

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