Welcome to Dissecting House: a blog dedicated to the television show House MD, where analytical reviews of season 8 episodes are posted weekly.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Transplant Episode Review

Transplant was an interesting title to theorise about. I like the fact that it did refer to both an organ transplant and House being transplanted from jail to PPTH under Foreman's watch (the new DoM). House has not lost his wit nor his disrespectful ways, mocking Foreman's position and refusing to acknowledge him as a real boss. Foreman seems less authoritative than I thought he would be but perhaps some aspect of revenge is reserved for later on. I also like that the writers kept House true to his form. "People don't change" and expecting him to come back an apologetic, remorseful man...well it was never going to happen.

The fact that the POTW is not a patient but a diseased organ is an interesting twist. House has a natural tendency to de-humanise diseases so he was able to procede as normal without the 'annoying' interaction with the patient (the receiver of the lungs was Wilson's patient). House is often criticised for being an ass, but if he hadn't suggested to Wilson that he stops "respecting" his patient and convinces her to live she would be dead. ("What comes after respect?") The parallel to this is that Wilson then gets the bad influence alcholic boyfriend to convince the patient to live. Wonderful writing.

I like Chi Park already. She does remind me of Masters but I think she will hold her own. The fact that this apparent mouse punched her supervisor not only makes House respect her more, but connects her to House. The part where he suggested they were twins was fantastic. I like to see that she isn't subservient and only follows House's instructions if they are medically relevant (ie refusal to steal the chair). She decides to stay at PPTH, and has the courage to tell her parents what happened because of House. She sees past what he projects and what people say about him to what really matters; his impeccably observant and deductive mind.

The medicine draws him back again, as we saw in Twenty Vicodin. You'll note that he was completely unaware (and doesn't care) about how much he is being paid. Besides believing that people don't change, he also likes his surroundings and situations to stay the same. The team is nowhere to be found and House mentions more than once that he wants them back. Also, the team not being present is a very well-thought way of de-emphasising the fact that Cuddy is no longer there. It makes that particular (major) change easier to digest if it's less obvious. House also wants his old office and even goes as far as breaking in to get it back (which he does in the end). It's perhaps a reminder to the audience that House has always done dramatic, apparently nonsensical or shocking things. He just happens to (at least partly) compensate for these actions by so often being right.

Humourous dialogue I particularly appreciated:

After shouting unexpectedly about the elephant in the room (prison) he talks about not being raped and then says, "Well now that we've got that completely behind us". 

"Fresh fruit in prison is usually chicken"

Wilson punches House in the face and then says "Dinner tonight? I'll pick something up."
 (This is a reverse parallel between House and Chi, with the punch symbolising punishment for a moral wrongdoing).

The relationship between House and Wilson is a vital character in itself. I have always admired their friendship and to see Wilson forgive him once again both makes me happy and proves that "the heart does go on". It is perhaps a misguided idea to trust his friend but a friendship like theirs is unconditional. I like the vegetarian metaphor, with Wilson going back to meat signifying him going back to House.

I thought it was a very good transitory episode from jail to PPTH, and I particularly liked seeing House interact with Chi and Wilson. Next up is Charity Case. If you're into speculation, check out my theory on Thirteen.


  1. Hey there, I just commented to ya on Twitter but wanted to comment here. I did not care for the episode, it just felt like it was missing something. My favorite part was the end where House got his office and his stuff back. I do wish the punch from Wilson would have been more REAL! It was so fake!

    I also had to sit back and think about the fact that even though House was apprehensive about returning to his "environment" he actually wound up craving it. In some aspects no he hasn't changed. But damn it would be nice if after 7 years we'd have SOME evolution of character. :D

    Your post brings up a lot of things I had not thought of and I appreciate it, it made me think. I still felt something was missing, and for the first time Hugh just didn't seem on his "game" which is odd because the guy always puts so much into his role.

    IMO this isn't the same House series I signed up for in Season 1. I just think about the House I loved in earlier seasons and the House who crashed into Cuddy's home. If we say "well that's because it's NOT the same House" then that means he's changed and remember according to Shore, people don't change. But if it is the same House, that means we have all misread House from the beginning because NONE of us would have ever predicted he would become this unrecognizable guy.

    I watch old eps and just can't get from there to here without shaking my head and wondering what the hell happened. We were better off never having Cuddy and House in a romantic relationship. I thought the tension, chemistry and relationship between them before the romance was much better.

    Shore thinks he can have a show about a character that never evolves. One of the things I loved most about the House character is that he gives us hope, he makes us want to hope. We cheered him on even through all his crap because we wanted him to beat the odds. But when we're told House will never beat the odds, he will remain the same now as he's always been, it's kind of like "why am I wasting my time?"

    The show has been about House and how the medical cases and the people around him affect him. How could he NOT be changed after all the incredible cases he's solved and all he has been through?

    Hugh is a phenomenal presence on screen and he has done some amazing things with this character and he will probably continue to do it, but I don't think one man can save the show. Shore says they are getting back to the roots but it may be too little too late. We don't want roots, we want our show back.

    Regardless, I do appreciate that even when we have different POVs about the episodes we can still talk about them! :)



  2. Steph, I don't think Foreman is in any way out for revenge. He knows that's a game he can't win anyway and it would undermine his position. In any case, I think Foreman really came into his own during the last 1 and 1/2 seasons. That scene in "Help Me", his concern for House, his positive attitude towards the House/Cuddy relationship... He has come a long way from his "I don't want to be like House" days, he not only has professional but also personal respect for House by now.

    Though yeah, in Wilson's case I guess "respect" is one of those buzz words for House that keep people from doing things to change things. :)

    team not being present is a very well-thought way of de-emphasising the fact that Cuddy is no longer there

    YES. Exactly what I thought. Everything changed, the whole energy was different, so her absence wasn't that noticable so far.

    Gotta admit, I rather hated House's "prison rape" joke, but of course he would chose the most tasteless thing available, sigh. Wasn't expecting to see Wilson there, though, that was like a punch in the gut. But then House wooing him. OMG. :D

  3. Jess, the show has evolved along with the storylines. Characters don't change but their relationships with others contribute greatly to how they evolve. Cuddy realised that she couldn't change (and convince herself to accept House as he is) and House realised that he could never be what she needed...

    But now we've moved on (pun half intended) from Season 7 and it's time to look forward. David Shore said he wants to go back to the foundations and concentrate on the medicine and what makes House great, but that doesn't mean rewinding...

    Esther, perhaps revenge is too strong a word. I simply meant take advantage of the fact that he is House's "boss". He just seems almost uncharacteristically mellow. But I suppose we didn't see much of him. I agree with you that he has evolved in terms of not worrying about being like House though.

  4. ¡Qué manera tan excelente de evaluar el episodio! Siempre me sorprendes, Steph.

    La verdad no sabía que me iba a interesar más por el episodio, pero luego de leer esto, es un hecho. Estoy de acuerdo y me agrada la idea de que House siga siendo como es. Y la idea de estas nuevas integrantes, tan diferentes a los clásicos y repetitivos personajes que ya conocemos, se pinta fantástico para mí.

    Chi luce interesante, y muy lista. Adams me parece un poco a Cameron. Son dos combos que seguró amaré.

    Y la relación de House y Wilson, bueno, eso es algo que siempre estará en mi mira. ¡Es tan especial!

    Voy a ver el episodio, y pasaré comentando de nuevo.

    Usted siga así, haciendo este fantástico trabajo. Ya espero tu review de Charity Case, que por cierto, luce atrayente. No tengo idea de las suposiciones sobre Trece, así que posiblemente espere hasta el estreno.

    Gracias, y saludos.

  5. Thanks so much Cesar! Glad you liked the review. What did you think of the episode?

  6. Great review !!! we already talked about the episode so you know what i think of it ;)
    i need to re watch it with subtitles cause i missed a lot of stuff, like the rape joke LOOL


  7. Ya lo he dicho, tu review me encantó. Pero lamentablemente debo decir que el episodio no tanto.

    Cuando vi los vídeos promocionales, pensé que tendríamos un episodio especial, de esos que te hacen reflexionar o que se guardan en tu mente por siempre, tal es el caso de Help Me. Pero mis expectativas se derrumbaron completamente cuando vi este episodio.

    No fue lo que yo calificaría como un episodio suficientemente bueno ¿Por qué? En primer lugar me pareció que hubo mucho dialogo y pocos momentos de esos en los que House a pesar de hablar, nos maravilla por sus ocurrencias. Tampoco estuve muy de acuerdo con la forma en que se ha llevado el episodio.

    Ha estado como un poco aburrido ver que no hay nada más interesante además del hecho de que contamos con un paciente raro: "unos pulmones". No hay nada además de eso, que llama la atención.

    En cuanto a otros aspectos, debo decir que pensé que House se iba a comportar como él siempre ha sido... él lo hizo, pero no como tiene acostumbrado. Su relación con Wilson fue quizas algo que me gustó mucho, pero la relación de Wilson con su paciente no me convenció del todo.

    Además, sentí como que nos dieron un episodio como para pasar el rato... sin indagar más en temas relacionados con House. Explicaron la salida de Cuddy muy a la ligera y prácticamente parecía que no había pasado nada. (Obviando por su puesto, el equipo enroscado en el tobillo de House).

    Igualmente, amé este nuevo personaje. Su forma de ser es interesante, me gustaría ver como se desenvuelve. Es un cerebrito pero obviamente dista mucho de ser una copia de Masters.

    También amé el final del episodio, creo que a pesar de que comenzó de una manera "diferente" y que no agradó del todo, el desenlace reparó todo y nos mostró que House sigue siendo House.

    El episodio en sí no es malo. Sólo que pensé que podría ser mejor. Yo tengo fe en los escritores, sé que pueden traernos algo mucho mejor.

    Amé este episodio más que Moving On, The Fix, Now what? y mucho otros de la séptima temporada. Pero definitivamente no es mejor que Twenty Vicodin.

    Estos dos episodios son distintos, lo sé. Pero Broken, Help Me, Lines in the sand, Frozen, Three Stories y algunos otros, hechos por los mismos guionistas, son mejores

    Sé que dijeron que iban a regresar a lo básico esta temporada. Aún lo espero.

    Mi veredicto: Este episodio ha sido bueno, vale la pena verlo, pero tal vez, llegues a pensar que le faltó algo que tienen los demás.


    Pero, Steph, por otro lado, tu review tiene 10/10.