I'll be tuning in to the series finale of House tonight and hoping that it might cause me to revise this list, but recent years have not been kind to the show. Cast departures, both contractual and plot-related, have been used in the place of actual drama for too long, and the show's present cast doesn't hold a candle to the original. (Although I like Taub and tolerate Charlyne Yi, Odette Annable is no Cameron.)
Still, House is worth watching most weeks because of the spectacular performance of Hugh Laurie as the pill-popping misanthrope with the talent for getting to the incredibly complicated and unlikely diagnosis somewhere between the fourth and seventh try.
With that in mind, let's remember the good times with a list of my ten favorite episodes of House.
10. Acceptance- House eagerly treats a death row inmate despite the staff's objections. Notable for a very good guest turn by LL Cool J.
9. All In- House diagnoses a young boy with the same symptoms as an undiagnosed case from 12 years ago. On the list for great scenes of House playing poker against Wilson and Cuddy.
8. The Mistake- I'm a sucker for time-shifted narratives, and this one about Chase and House lying to cover up the reason for a patient's death is quite good.
7. Broken- Two hour season premiere where House goes to rehab and learns to accept that he needs help. Great guest turns by Andre Braugher and Lin-Manuel Miranda.
6. One Day, One Room- Form-breaking episode where House doesn't diagnose any case, just sits in with a rape victim who decides he is the only person he can trust.
5. Alone- House attempts to solve a case without help from his recently-departed team. Great twist ending.
4. No Reason- House gets shot. A really great example of the "it was all a dream" TV trope.
3. Son of Coma Guy- Really interesting episode where House wakes a guy from a coma for 24 hours to try and diagnose his son. John Larroquette is great as the coma patient.
2. House's Head/Wilson's Heart- Brilliant two-part episode where House goes to extreme lengths to remember the details of a bus crash. It's a damn shame the show killed off Anne Dudek's Cut-throat Bitch.
1. 3 Stories- Absolutely the best they've ever done. House is forced to lecture med students and decides to tell them three stories about patients with leg injuries. The first episode to give background on House's pain.