HOUSE “Moving On” (Season Finale) Review

House (FOX) Moving On Season 7 Finale

5/24 update: It wasn’t a hallucination.

HOUSE “Moving On” Season 7 Episode 23 (Season Finale) – Loss abounds in the ”Moving On” seventh season finale of HOUSE. The patient of the week loses her compulsive need to make everything art, Taub loses the ability to mute his phone or his sperm, Cuddy loses her dining room as Lisa Edelstein loses any reason to remain on the show, Wilson loses any blinders he had left re: House, and House loses whatever was left of his mind.

Let’s get the lesser storylines out of the way first, shall we? Taub pulls an Arnold Schwarzenegger and impregnates his wife (okay, ex-wife) and a mistress simultaneously. The most enjoyable part of this arc is Taub’s ringtone for Rachel: “Escape (The Pina Colada Song),” which makes me chuckle every time I hear it. Of course, I also have to wonder why he doesn’t put the phone on vibrate, but given he doesn’t seem able to use condoms (STD tests for everyone!), why would he be able to work a phone? I’m simply not interested in Taub anymore, so my only reaction here is “Really, writers? Really? One Taub baby wouldn’t be insufferable enough?”

“This is a puzzle tailor-made for you. You don’t know which of my symptoms are real, which are fake, and which ones I’m not even telling you about.” I love Shoreh Aghdashloo, so I was thrilled she would be the patient of the week, and I think she does a nice job with the material. Yes, the parallels to House are as subtle as neon and the anvils are fast and furious, but Aghdashloo gives Afsoun just the right quiet desperation and Luka has an appealing frustrated sweetness. Do I buy her conversion to love for one second? No, but it was about projecting House’s feelings, so the writers needed to put it in.

As for House ramming Cuddy’s home because he, another woman’s husband, sees her with another man, there are a few possibilities. One: this is some sort of drug-induced hallucination. Two: the entire season is a dream and this fall will find House alone in his bathroom with Patrick Duffy in the shower. Three: House really did commit attempted murder and walk away from everything to drink on a beach. Dreaming the entire season is the least likely scenario, though at this point, I think I would take it.

If this is a hallucination, I’m not certain of its purpose. House’s delusions tend to have meaning, but I can’t quite parse this one, partly because I’m not sure when the break from reality would have occurred. Did he pass out from the pain of operating on himself or was it much earlier?

Let’s assume all of the events are real. House sees Cuddy and her date and thinks she lied when she said she hadn’t been dating, so he purposefully rams right through her dining room, almost killing four people, then hands her the brush and calmly walks away and flees to a beach. Am I supposed to feel glad at the end that he’s in a cheerful bar because it means he’s feeling happy (or at least nothing)? I don’t. To be fair, while House said he was making changes, he never said they would be good and the sudden veering from self-destruction to domestic violence type destruction certainly is a change, but, yeah, it’s not one I’ll celebrate. I will, however, once again celebrate Hugh Laurie’s ability to sell any material he’s handed. His talent is stunning.

Let’s face it, this ending–if it’s not a hallucination–is ridiculous. The timeline is confusing at best. How much time passed from Cuddy running into “mildly unnerving” guy in the coffee shop to her affectionately touching his arm during their double dinner date o’doom? Why was this dinner happening in broad daylight? Why in the name of all that is holy wasn’t Wilson driving when he knew how many pills House has been popping? Plus, the idea of House almost committing vehicular homicide when Rachel might have been in the house? Insane on its face.

This was Lisa Edelstein’s last episode, and while the writers had no idea she would be leaving the show at the time this episode was shot, they certainly gave Cuddy an out. I don’t think House and Cuddy could even remain in the same state at this point, let alone the same hospital, and I certainly don’t blame Ms. Edelstein for running far, far away from what has been done to Cuddy. While Robert Sean Leonard is returning, the writers also gave Wilson an out because that friendship took as much of a hit as Cuddy’s dining room.

House executive producer Greg Yaitanes said fans would be left shocked and excited by the last five minutes of tonight’s finale, but honestly, assuming the events are real (and the more I write, the more I’m leaning toward hallucination, though it’s probably wishful thinking), I’m just sad. House is many things: a cranky misanthrope, a brilliant doctor, a drug addict, a frustrating and selfish man. He is not; however, a psychopath. Or at least he wasn’t. Yes, House was hurting, drug-addled, and suffering from post-operative stress. Yes, Cuddy repeatedly picked the scab of their break-up, and yes she was with another man. These are all reasons for House to be upset—not ram his car into her home ALMOST KILLING HER AND THREE OTHER PEOPLE. I don’t know how the show will get past that. I don’t know how I will get past that. Assuming the show does get past it, where does House go from here? Doctors without Borders? Off the Map? Back to the psychiatric hospital?

Favorite lines:

“Which doctor was that? Seuss or J?”

“What speaks to me is that she’s elevated being full of crap to an art form and made a fortune doing it.”

“Oh thank God, the ICU isn’t being attacked by radioactive spiders.”

“I’m a big believer that the best way to get past the past is to shoot it in the head, bury it in a deep pit and pour lye on it.”

“It’s a family name.” “It’s a sandwich.”

“It’s a privacy curtain.” “It wasn’t working.”

“How many of those have you had today?” “I don’t know. Is your mother an answer?”

“This is the new House? Half the leg power and twice the irresponsibility?”

“You know, dying can also do a number on your ability to think.”

What did you think of “Moving On?” Love it, hate it, or fall somewhere in the middle? Are you on the hallucination or real events train? What did you think of House season 7 overall and what does it all mean for season 8? What do you want to see happen? Let’s talk about it in the comments.