Friday, April 20, 2007

Subtext -- Episode 319, "Act Your Age"

Clinic patient:
Guy who says he's peeing a lot

This one's not so much about the patient as the clinic. And Cuddy. And motives.

This is a big House-Cuddy episode, although most of it is through House-Wilson exchanges. The storyline gets its kick-start in the clinic, when House offers Wilson theater tickets from a patient whose life he saved. Wilson takes Cuddy, and House spends the episode joking around with it even though he's adorably jealous. ("Seriously?")

But for some subtle lovin', consider what happens before House makes the ticket offer, when he and Wilson first enter the exam room:

Wilson: "I didn't know you were seeing a patient."
House: "It's an exam room. What did you think I was doing?"
Wilson: "What you're usually doing. Hiding from Cuddy."

Yes ... curious, isn't it? How many times have we seen House use those exam rooms for kicking back with a magazine or a video game or "General Hospital"? And where's the protest that usually accompanies clinic duty?

Later, after Cameron did the vaginal exam on the little girl-main patient and got confounding results, the Ducklings are discussing more theories on their way to House's office -- his empty office, as it turns out. Chase's curiosity -- "Where is he?" -- is but a blip in the conversation as Foreman rolls right over it with another theory for the main case.

But in the next scene, we see where House is -- the clinic, again. With the fake urinator, again. This time, Cuddy interrupts to pull House out and talk about the little girl. Think about that. She's pulling him from the clinic to tell him to do something with the main case. A little backward, no? This is also when House realizes that Wilson took Cuddy to the play. Later, House makes a third foray into the clinic (after a giddy Wilson boasts about his flowers), and he walks right past Cuddy to do so.

Where am I going with this? Well, I have a theory: House, in his own subtle way, is making an effort to impress Cuddy. What do they most bump heads about? Clinic duty. What's House doing a curious amount of this episode? Clinic duty.

Big episode.

Personal note
Sorry for the three-month blog-posting hiatus, friends and neighbors. If you've been checking back, thanks for sticking around. If you're newbies, welcome. Thankfully, I don't think I skipped out on much, what with those annoying three-week American Idol breaks. And it's possible I have notes on "One Day, One Room" (yes, notes -- I am that dorky), so if next week's episode is clinic patient-free, I might yet have something to write about.