For those of you who haven’t seen this series, or heard of it, the least you need to know is that Greg House (played by the increasingly outstanding Hugh Laurie) is a doctor of diagnostic medicine at an American hospital. His job, along with his three junior staff, is to work out what’s wrong with the various mysteriously sick people who are admitted to hospital.
In one sense, this show is completely formulaic: each episode begins with someone getting ill under dramatic circumstances (not always a seizure, but that is a favourite). House and his crew try increasingly riskier and more dangerous treatments, always getting the true diagnosis wrong, until there is a twist ending, and House ultimately figures out what is wrong.
The illnesses themselves and the hospital procedures are fascinating viewing, but what ultimately sucks us in is the personality of House himself. He is a man with absolutely no personal skills whatsoever. He is constantly rude, obnoxious and unafraid to say exactly what he’s thinking, no matter who it rubs up the wrong way. In every episode, he irritates and infuriates his fellow staff and patients. But, at the end of the day, he’s a great doctor, so they put up with him.
We’d hate to know this guy in real life, but on screen, it’s irresistible. On top of that, Hugh Laurie, has so inhabited this character that I now find it hard to recognise him when he talks in his real British accent. As the episodes roll by, these characters just become more and more real. I’m not usually a huge fan of television shows (especially medical ones), but this show is really good. 4 1/2 out of 5.