House - Season 3 (Review)
Review by Jack Foley
IT WOULD be easy to run out of superlatives for Hugh Laurie in House. The actor just keeps getting better, grouchier and downright funnier as the lovably grizzled title character.
But where season three really came into its own was during the numerous sub-plots involving supporting characters – subplots that inevitably challenged our hero and took him to some desperate places.
Most notable of these was a recurring role for David Morse, who provided a worthy adversary for Dr Gregory House after being humiliated during a clinical examination.
Having been pushed to his own limits, Detective Michael Tritter (Morse) made life extremely uncomfortable for House – even going so far as to attempt to get him banned from medicine for good.
In doing so, he also set his own colleagues against him – leaning heavily upon Robert Sean Leonard’s Dr Wilson as well as regular colleagues Omar Epps, Jesse Spencer and Jennifer Morrison.
It was utterly compelling viewing watching this battle of wits unfold and, for once, the outcome didn’t feel quite so inevitable.
Morse has long been a character actor I’ve admired, whether its providing strong support to Nicolas Cage and Ed Harris in The Rock or appearing alongside Edward Norton in Down In The Valley. In House, he delivered a character that was every bit as proud and arrogant as his nemesis, and whose dogged determination to win contributed to some of the most memorable episodes in the show’s history.
Strong, too, was House’s tussle with Lisa Edelstein’s Dr Cuddy [his boss] during the opening episodes of the season, as he attempted to persuade her that he still required medication, and a stand-alone episode on board an airplane in which House and Cuddy find themselves racing against time against a deadly virus.
Edelstein was one of the characters who benefited from more storytime in this third season and she came into her own when dealing with her maternal frustrations.
Likewise, Leonard’s friendship and loyalty to House continued to be tested and provided viewers with some wonderfully candid exchanges between them, while Epps’ crisis of confidence late on helped bring the season to another strong finish.
The relationship between Jesse Spencer and Jennifer Morrison also contributed to some humourous moments and showed another, more interesting side to Morrison’s character.
The final episodes also saw House becoming ever more stubborn and increasingly more grouchy, leading up to some surprise decisions on behalf of his fellow staff – the fallout from which promises to make for an intriguing start to season 4.
So, it’s with little hesitation that we recommend this third season box set to fans of the show. It’s packed with great storylines, witty dialogue and a towering central performance and provides compulsive viewing time and time again.
And if you’ve never tuned into an episode – then this is a terrific place to start!