House, M.D.: Season One (2004)

Genre(s): Comedy / Drama
Universal || NR - 972 minutes - $59.98 || August 30, 2005
Reviewer: Brian Oliver || Posted On: 2005-09-05


Buy this DVD from Amazon.com!
.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

S P E C I A L
.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

A U D I O &
.:: V I D E O ::.

Audio and Video

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Overall
.::MOVIE INFORMATION::.
Director: NA
Writer(s): David Shore (creator), Bryan Singer (exective producer)
Cast: Hugh Laurie, Lisa Edelstein, Omar Epps, Robert Sean Leonard, Jennifer Morrison, Jesse Spencer


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
  • Dr. House
  • Medical Causes
  • The Concept
  • Set Tour
  • HOUSE-isms
  • Casting Session with Hugh Laurie


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Widescreen (1.78)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish

Comment on this and other movies on the message board!


.::THE FILM::.

"Hello, sick people and their loved ones! In the interest of saving time and avoiding a lot of boring chitchat later, I'm Doctor Gregory House; you can call me 'Greg.' I'm one of three doctors staffing this clinic this morning. This ray of sunshine is Doctor Lisa Cuddy. Doctor Cuddy runs this whole hospital, so unfortunately she's much too busy to deal with you. I am a board certified diagnostician with a double specialty of infectious disease and nephrology. I am also the only doctor currently employed at this hospital who is forced to be here against his will. That is true, isn't it? But not to worry, because for most of you, this job could be done by a monkey with a bottle of Motrin. Speaking of which, if you're particularly annoying, you may see me reach for this: this is Vicodin. It's mine! You can't have any! And no, I do not have a pain management problem, I have a pain problem... but who knows? Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I'm too stoned to tell. So, who wants me?"

This is only one statement by the main character that makes this film so crass but oh so enjoyable.

The show is about Dr. Gregory House (Laurie), a Vicodin-addicted, brutally honest doctor who leads a group of three others as they take patients with symptoms that are out of the norm. The House gang are composed of: Eric Foreman (Epps), Allison Cameron (Morrison) and Robert Chase (Spencer). Together they try to diagnose and treat the strange illnesses their patients are experiencing. So, what's the big deal? Is this just another "ER"? Absolutely not.

Not only is House addicted to pain pills (due to a leg injury), he is also a doctor who avoids seeing the patients. He also (what seems like) berades his collegues and snubs his nose at authority, specifically the lovely hospital administrator Lisa Cuddy (Edelstein).

The show itself does not follow the tried and true of television (which quite frankly makes for oridinary and boring TV). Much like Tony Shalhoub brought forth a character never before seen on TV, so does Laurie who, if Shalhoub can get an Emmy nomination, so should he for this character (which he did). But, even beyond this eccentric character, the stories, while somewhat repetitive (someone comes in with odd illness, doctors try to treat it but make patient worse only to find cure at last moment), they're still fun to watch.

Also good are the supporting cast members. The lovely Jennifer Morrison makes a nice love interest for any of the characters; Lisa Edelstein is nice as an adversary for House; Omar Epps, a solid actor in his own right, provides a sort of protege; and Jesse Spencer has that nifty traitor quality to him. Also making appearances sparatically (he comes in to help in cases) is Robert Sean Leonard whom I will always see as that guy in Dead Poet's Society.

This season features guest appearances by Chi McBride (I, Robot) as a sleazy millionaire businessman out to fire House, Sela Ward (The Fugitive) as House's ex-girlfriend (she's joining the show in season two for a short stint), Andrew Keegan as a medical student, plus Robin Tunney (The Craft) and John Cho (Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle) playing patients. Others joining are Carmen Electra, Harry J. Lennix (The Matrix Reloaded), Joe Morton (Terminator 2), Scott Foley (TV's "Felicity"), Peter Graves (Airplane) and even executive producer Bryan Singer.



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

I guess Universal has something against providing commentaries on their TV DVD releases as "House, M.D." continues their record. For the most part, this set is better (in terms of special features) than those of "Monk", "Quantum Leap" or "Magnum P.I.".

Dr. House is a featurette on the main character, about why the character can be both mean-spirited but also admirable at the same time. It's fine to watch and is nice to hear from the creators and others involved about their thoughts on the character. Kind of a fluffy feature, but no harm in having it on this DVD.

Medical Cases covers the reality of the illnesses House and his team come across. There are more interviews with those involved with the show and about how the show's creator was worried when writing the pilot whether there would be enough of them to last even a season (he assures us that there are a ton...).

The Concept is more of the same. More interviews and more information about the show. This featurette talks about how the idea came about where the original idea was to have a group of doctors who work on werid cases, but they needed a central character which is how House came about. More fluffy material, but fun to watch.

Set Tour is basic but fun to watch because the two leading (and beautiful) ladies take us on a tour of the set pointing out the rooms used a lot, the magic used (as in elevators and stairs that go nowhere). Not a great feature, but the women alone are worth watching this for.

HOUSE-isms goes over the language or sayings Dr. House uses over the course of this season. This is actually nice to watch, remembering some of the great quotes (the best in television in the last decade I must say). If you enjoy the House character, this is fun to watch.

Casting Session with Hugh Laurie is short, but you get to see in this tape why Laurie was cast as House. Pure magic for this (hopefully) future multi-Emmy winning actor.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

The advancements made on TV DVDs has been very nice for those who use surround systems while watching an episode. This "House" set is very nice. The picture is presented in 1.78:1 aspect ratio and looks nearly perfect with crisp colors coming out nicely. The sound is solid enough with the standard 5.1 mix. I also watched a few episodes using the regular TV speakers, which works just fine as well.



.::OVERALL::.

While the special features are lacking some, one does not pay $35+ merely for those. Besides, "House" is a show that one could watch over and over and still be entertained, the featurettes are alright (I would've liked a few commentary tracks from the cast/crew), however it's the episodes you pay the big money for. Some might find the show to be too predictable or redundant but without interesting characters, what's the point?