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

Genre(s): Comedy / Drama / Mystery
Universal || NR - 1044 minutes - $59.98 || August 22, 2006
Reviewer: Brian Oliver || Posted On: 2006-09-04


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.:: 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)
Cast: Hugh Laurie, Lisa Edelstein, Omar Epps, Robert Sean Leonard, Jennifer Morrison, Jesse Spencer


.::DVD INFORMATION::.
Supplemental Material:
  • Producer Commentaries
  • An Evening with House
  • Blooper Reel
  • Alternate Takes: The Valley Girl Versions
  • It Could Be Lupus...


Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 6
  • Widescreen (1.78)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish

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.::THE FILM::.

IMAGE

“House” returns for its second season with all-new medical mysteries and the same old Vicodin, pill-popping sardonic Dr. Gregory House (Laurie). The first season set up the main characters and the odd nature never seen in any other shows. Can you imagine “ER” with a reckless doctor? Season two cranks up the pressure on our favorite doc and his crew as the medical dilemmas become tougher and in fact, he and others are in danger for not only their careers, but also their lives. Cameron might be HIV positive (‘Need to Know’), Foreman gets exposed to a deadly virus (‘Euphoria - Parts 1 and 2’) and House gets shot in the season finale (‘No Reason’).

I look at “House” much like “Monk”. The two shows feature unusual main characters put into difficult situations and, more often and not, are right in the end. However, the two also have similarities in being limited with their stories. First, does anyone believe for one second that House’s life would be in danger? This isn’t “ER” where one headlining doctor can leave and be replaced next season; what about his job? I guess he could lose it but where’s the fun in seeing House just lounging around being bitter? We like to see him bitter at the patient more so than when he’s alone. Even if he’s put on administrative leave (quite frankly, I’m amazed that he still has a job), you know he’s going to be back within an episode or two. Point is, “House” has to work hard with the stories, keeping it fresh and unpredictable, and thus far, it has worked out.

This season also has the addition, in a short 9-episode stint, of Sela Ward as House’s ex Stacy comes and works at the hospital. While I understand why this character was around as she helps explore House’s past, she just wasn’t that interesting of a character or even that big of an adversary either.

This season also features some great guest stars including Ron Livingston, Cynthia Nixon, D.B. Sweeney, Samantha Mathis, Elias Koteas, Greg Grunberg ("Alias"), Charles S. Dutton, Michelle Trachenberg ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer"), Kip Pardue and LL Cool J. Though none are A-listers, they are talented and provide weight to their roles.

That said, blemishes and all, “House” is still one of the best TV shows on today and despite storylines that get a little too routine, it is better than “ER” or even any of the “CSI” shows. So long as House is a class-A a-hole and Hugh Laurie delivers Emmy-worthy performances, the show will last for a while.



.::SPECIAL FEATURES::.

The season one set had some decent features but I was disappointed Universal didn’t bother with any commentary tracks (series premiere especially) and instead they provided the viewer with worthless featurettes. This time around, I got the tracks, but little else is very useful.

Producers’ Commentary - Executive producers David Shore (also creator) and Katie Jacobs give their insights on two episodes, ‘Autopsy’ and ‘No Reason’, and while I can’t say they’re dull, neither really provide much information. These aren’t bad tracks, but adding a cast member or two (or Bryan Singer) would’ve liven things up a bit.

An Evening with “House” (18:14) - A Q&A with the cast and crew of “House” at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences where you get a little insight with each as they talk about their characters or each other. I’ve seen Hugh Laurie speak before, but I still a chuckle at this strong English accent.

Blooper Reel - Everyone from Hugh Laurie to Omar Epps flub lines and curse when they do so. Nothing really different from other reels, but still very funny.

Alternate Takes - Cast members Lisa Edelstein (Cuddy) and Jennifer Morrison (Cameron) do an alternate take of a couple scenes but speaking like Valley Girls using words like “like” and “Oh my god!”. Dumb but still funny. It Could be Lupus... - We are taken through the series as the docs believe just about every patient that comes through could have lupus. Just demonstrates how often lupus is used.



.::AUDIO & VIDEO::.

IMAGE

The anamorphic widescreen is presented in 1.78 aspect ratio. The picture looks great (as it should) and crisp. The show’s nature varies from dark humor to melodrama and keeps a consistent look from episode to episode.

The only track available is the standard Dolby Digital 5.1 mix.



.::OVERALL::.

I think this set is better than season one but there’s still room for improvement. Add a few more commentary tracks with the cast and perhaps exec producer Bryan Singer, some deleted scenes and it could be a very good set.