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'House' recap: Facade is my co-pilot

November 22, 2010 | 10:31 pm

Housedance Christ on a cracker — are they really going to show a guy getting crucified?

With God as my witness, they do, and it turns out that getting nailed to a cross can be hazardous to your health.

Who knew?

Well, at least one guy – Jewish fella – coupla thousand years ago. It was in all the papers. They even wrote a bestselling book about it.

Anyway, while hanging there, Patient of the Week (POTW) starts to bleed from the mouth, so his buddies take him down off the cross (maybe they can reuse the wood?) and directly to Princeton Plainsboro, where House and Cuddy are busy fighting.

Turns out, this man of faith, this POTW, has a deal with God. Seems his daughter, Marisa, had been diagnosed with Stage 4 glioblastoma (brain cancer, for those of you who don’t have access to Google), which is basically a death sentence. Dad promised God that if his daughter survived, he’d nail himself to a cross every year. (I must have been absent from Catechism class the day they covered that.)

That was four years ago. The cancer went into remission. Marisa is a beautiful, healthy little girl (whose dad is a coupla wafers short of Communion).

The themes this week are faith and healing, lying and love. Cuddy is still angry at House for lying, which is causing friction because she needs a date to a wedding (older gentleman who happens to be a generous donor is marrying a woman –- shocker -- half his age).

At the same time, Taub suspects his wife is having an affair. She’s taking her cellphone into the bathroom when she showers. He snoops around her e-mail. The size 5 loafer is finally on the other foot. Except for the sex part: She’s having an “emotional affair” with a guy she met online. In a support group. For people with spouses who cheat. Irony is a dish best served cold.

Wilson’s girlfriend, Sam, is undergoing a clinical review at her hospital. So as a favor, Wilson goes over her files. Turns out, in five cases, she may have over-radiated cancer patients, who were terminal anyway. House and Wilson confer: Wilson probably would have done the same thing. But is it ethical?

The team tests POTW for infection. He works around barns and stables, and with his crucifixion habit (is that a pre-existing condition?), might have contracted Rhodococcus Equine. Except another symptom presents: His teeth are falling out.

Chase and Dr. Martha M. Masters (3M) go to his apartment. It looks like a Nordstrom after its semi-annual shoe sale: Almost no furniture, no TV, computer or stereo, and almost no food. They find a photo of him with his daughter years before: He used to be porky. Ah-ha! Malnutrition?

Then POTW’s legs start to hurt. Perhaps a neurological disorder would explain the symptoms and his religious delusions.

The team does a CT scan: POTW’s brain is riddled with multiple, dense lesions. Maybe it’s MS hiding behind malnutrition. Perhaps it’s Marburg’s MS, which is rare, but aggressive. It is known to be responsive to stem cell transplantation.

That’s what House urges: stem cell therapy. But it’s against POTW’s religion. House makes clear his stance on religious faith: It’s communicable, and it kills a lot of people. (And that’s in all the papers. Everyday.)

House asks his team to get Marisa to his bedside to talk some sense into him. She tearfully says that if Dad doesn’t go through with the treatment, if he dies, she’ll hate God.

Still, no go. (Do you think he signed a “Do Not Resurrect” order?) House plays his trump card: He tells POTW that his daughter still has cancer. That the CT scans she has undergone missed it, but the PET scan he’s run (twice) didn’t. God has broken the covenant.

So POTW starts treatment. He starts to get better. House confesses: I lied. Marisa’s fine. And you will be soon. (We are awaiting Pope Benedict’s ruling on this tactic.)

Speaking of lying: House discovers Cuddy’s true age. He also reveals he knows that she was married before. In 1987. For six days. (Does that count? I’ve been to parties that lasted longer.)

And Wilson proposes to Sam. With the expected disastrous result.

Final thought: How can House dance? He barely gets down the hall leaning on a cane. Ah, I’ll pray about that. Perhaps I’ll get an answer.

--Linda Whitmore

Photo: House (Hugh Laurie) and Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) cut a rug. Photo credit: Adam Taylor / Fox