House M.D.

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Last weekend I picked up the DVD set of the first season of House M.D. ($41.99 at Amazon).1 Objectively, it's ludicrous: Dr. House (Hugh Laurie) is a misanthropic, crippled, vicodin-addicted doctor specializing in diagnosis. Each episode features a patient with some baffling set of symptoms, requiring House to figure out what the (obscure) problem is, which he typically manages to do right as the patient is about to die. Naturally, he breaks all the rules, bullying patients and doctors alike in an effort to solve the problem of the week, saving the patient in the process.

Despite the absurdity of the premise, Hugh Laurie is convincing and hilarious as House. It's particularly hard to believe that this is the same man who used to pay the foppish, good natured, upper class English twit Wooster. In fact he's so convincing that apparently when director Bryan Singer saw his audition tape he thought Hugh Laurie was American.

If this sounds like the kind of thing you think you'll like, it probably is.

1. BTW, it appears that pretty much every program that's ever been on TV, no matter how lame, is available as a DVD box set. Exhibit 1: McMillan and Wife. Exhibit 2: Remington Steele. Exhibit 3: Hart to Hart. Scarecrow and Mrs. King isn't out yet, though.

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Hey, did you ever see the show Numb3rs? I'm getting into that here in Seoul. The armed forces TV station is on like the 5th episode of the first season now.

I've watched Numb3rs a few times. Mostly over the summer. It's treatment of how mathematics can be applied to crime solving is rather fanciful. But I find the acting fairly decent and the stories to be varied enough to keep me coming back.

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