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4.4 out of 5 stars
House - Season 1 [DVD]
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on 23 February 2007
As a big fan of CSI and medical dramas like Grey's Anatomy, I could hardly wait to buy House on DVD, and I wasn't disappointed. Like so many other shows, House works brilliantly when watched in chunks - 2 or 3 episodes at a time! I lost a lot of sleep watching the series 1 through the first time, and when I finished, I simply threw the first disc back in the player and started again from the beginning.

I remember Hugh Laurie from the Fry and Laurie days of long ago, as well as Blackadder, Jeeves and Wooster, and so on, and have always been a fan. But I was still amazed by the quality of his acting on this show. His American accent is so realistic, you forget he is English (in fact I almost got a shock listening to his English accent on the bonus features), and his comic timing makes the best of a witty and clever script. His banter with Dr Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) is really enjoyable, as is his relationship with the doctors on his team, although honestly, I don't think they can hold a candle to Laurie in terms of ability or on-screen charisma.

Personally, I like the formulaic nature of each episode, as the characters, the humour and the tremendous variety of sometimes bizarre medical problems stop it getting boring. However, my favorite episode of season 1 was the one that broke the formula by following three cases at once. In this penultimate episode of the series we get a deeper insight into House's character, his past and his leg injury, which stirs up more sympathy for his character, as well as giving Laurie an opportunity to demonstrate some really fine acting.

I recently introduced the series to a friend of mine who is a critical care nurse and she loved it! I'm just about to buy series 2!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 8 July 2006
After ER, Chicago Hope, and dozens of other medical dramas, how many really good stories could be left? Turns out, quite a few if done in the right way with an excellent cast. House M.D. breathes new life into the hospital drama by adding a dash of CSI type sleuthing with a stellar cast, led by the genius British actor Hugh Laurie (Jeeves and Wooster) as Dr. Gregory House and also starring Lisa Edelstein, Omar Epps, and Robert Sean Leonard.

Dr. Gregory House is an incredibly unusual doctor. He dislikes patients, is partially crippled by a muscular disorder, pops Vicodin like they are tic-tacs, and is addicted to reruns of General Hospital. He would rather read a medical journal or hide out in the OB/GYN lounge than deal with a patient. His true purpose in life is leading a team of young doctors in diagnosing the usually rare and fatal maladies that baffle most doctors. Here House is part Sherlock Holmes and part Gil Grissom. He assembles the puzzle, often failing to get the pieces right, until finally the solution is arrived at. In the meantime he runs rampant across the hospital, badgering or simply bullying his way into getting what he needs to try and help the patient. His bedside manner is not pleasant, in fact House is a jerk because being a jerk is the fastest way to get patients healthy.

Besides trying to diagnose diseases that would baffle Doogie Howser, he is forced by the hospital adminstrator to treat patients during free clinic hours, a fate which to House is akin to death. He hates patients, who he believes are by nature liars, but having to deal with them face to face allows a slightly softer side to House to shine and also give the show some needed humor amidst the darkness.

The writing is fresh, original, and inspired, but the show is truly brilliant thanks to the incredible acting of Laurie. If you like your doctors warm and cuddly, then House may not be for you. But if you give this show 2 episodes, you will be hooked on it like House is hooked on Vicodin.

A.G. Corwin
St.Louis, MO
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 17 November 2006
From the first show to the last, this is one of the best TV Drama shows to his the screens in a long time. Hugh Laurie playing the character of Dr House is absolutely amazing, portraying a cynical, sad man with an inredible talent in diagnostic medicine, yet with little people skills!

Although each show follows a set pattern, very soon it is not anymore about the cases he solves, but the lines he delivers and the side stories that unfold as the show progesses.

Well worth watching, and I can only recommend it!!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 2005
There are dozens of reasons not to like House - it is outrageously formulaic, ludicrously far-fetched and often overly contrived and laboured - it is also one of the most wonderful television shows I have had the pleasure of watching. The pithy dialogue, thoughful direction and most of all, the beautifully measured acting of the central cast more than make up for any shortcomings. Hugh Laurie delivers a tour-de-force performance as the flawed genius - proving my long held theory that genuinely great dramatic performances are best achieved by casting comedians. The supporting cast, whilst always playing second-fiddle to Laurie, are equally competent performers and the will-they-won't-they relationship between House and Dr Cameron (the gorgeous Jennifer Morrison) provides a welcome romantic subplot - although is strangely remensicent of the Grissom/Sara relationship in CSI. All-in-all this show is (almost despite itself) captivating and I challenge anyone to not be so obsessed with its protaganist that by the penultimate episode - easily the season's best - they will be aching to know more about what makes this man tick. I absolutely recommend without question this genius piece of television gold.
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44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
on 2 September 2006
First of all, I'll just agree with all the other reviewers in saying that this is an excellent series, and Hugh Laurie's performance is fantastic and totally believable playing as the misanthropic wise-cracking lead.

However, the main point I wanted to make is just to make people aware of the shows style, and give my own opinion about the repetitive structure of the show; Something that other people have mentioned.

Basically, you shouldn't really be thinking about House in terms of a typical hospital drama like ER, or Chicago Hope, or etc. etc. The genre that House is most like is actually the detective story, and if you think of House as "Columbo with a Stethascope" then you will be closer to the mark.

Each episode involves him tracing the clues that will lead to the cure of a patient, but there are also some excellent sub-plots running through all the shows, and lets not forget, House gets to deliver some seriously funny lines.

This is a must buy.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2007
Everything about House is a little bit different; the teaching hospital setting, the stylish glass and wood interiors and of course the acerbicly witty Dr Gregory House (Hugh Laurie). However, as with many US series, designed to be drawn out over hundreds of episodes, you won't notice all its facets at first. The show has a very particular formula - a medical whodunnit (or whatisit) where a patient is admitted with mysterious or misdiagnosed symptoms. House and his team of junior doctors spend the episode using differential diagnosis to try and find the cause of the symptoms before it's too late - which occasionally it is. On watching the first few episodes of the first season, you'll mainly find that it's this formula being developed and the writers using the hook of Dr House's dry wit to lure viewers. However investing a little time in the show and you'll start to see the central and supporting characters blossom and develop in different directions, and the inventiveness of the different ailments and approaches to diagnosis stops the format from becoming stale - in fact a format such as this is refreshing compared to the complicated, twisted threads and general chaos that defines dramas like ER.

A different story each episode, twinned with decent development arcs for the characters, gives House the best of both worlds, making it an easy show to pick up but also one that holds your interest. Hugh Laurie in the central role has become a very memorable character, with his comic timing not wasted on House's barbed, irreverent tongue. The writers don't let this overshadow the rest of the excellent cast though, making a very well rounded television series.

The DVD box set doesn't feature any extravagant packaging, however the set does include a few interesting extras which genuinely gives insight into the series. Although the following series are arguably better, if you start from series two or three (as I did), you will find yourself backtracking to pick up on the character development. Definitely recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 10 March 2006
I am a new fan of Hugh Laurie and am amazed at his hidden versatility. I have seen the other actors in other things and am thrilled that the production team took the chance to bring them all altogether in this show. Hugh is simply a revelation and was unlucky not to get an Emmy (same for the Show) but at least that was put right at the Golden Globes and he deserves all the plaudits being heaped upon him. This show absolutely sparkles with wit, mystery and humuor. The first season gave us little snippets of each person's character history and I hope that the new season will keep dropping more our way, maybe by way of more flashbacks - for instance the original meetings of House/Wilson and House/Cuddy, the Legend of his Medical School training and finally the selection of his team.
People have said that season 2 has been slow to burn but I think it is building up nicely, I have just seen the episode where Foreman is selected as House's Supervisor WOW! What a potboiler, standby for fireworks there then. An inspired choice for both subject matter and cast the series will hopefully settle in for a nice long run - maybe to rival Law and Order.
Absolutely the best ENTERTAINMENT on TV at the moment - BAR NONE!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 10 February 2007
Its really difficult to put into words quite how much i enjoy this programme. It speaks volumes for its quality when i can safely say i've now watched every episode twice since purchase and the second time it was just as good as the first. Hugh Laurie is quite simply amazing, but, crucially, so is everyone else. This isn't a one man show; yes, Greg House is the central protagonist, but we cannot forget Omar Epps' Foreman who has to endure House's repeated good-natured racism (hilarious), Jesse Spencer's troubled Chase (who really excels later in this first season when his loyalties become blurred) and the adorable Jennifer Morrison's Cameron, who, well, is simply sublime. Her character endures so much and there is real depth to her. Robert Sean Leonard's Wilson, House's best friend, is fantastic and last but not least, Lisa Edelstein's Cuddy, who puts up with just about everything.

This season pioneers what surely is to become a classic of modern comedy-drama. Each episode is filled to bursting with medical jargon and afflictions you would barely believe - but the whole thing is steeped in fact and it makes it all the more gripping. Bringing in arcs that span several episodes makes each one feel like part of an ongoing masterpiece.

Let us not forget the guest stars! So many famous faces from elsewhere getting their teeth into truly fascinating characters (I love Joe Morton's black senator-running-for-office, or Sarah Clarke's control freak, or Danny Nucci's mobster).

The drama is balanced so perfectly by moments of laugh out loud humour (even the second time around) and after the credits you begin to roll i challenge you NOT to feel that "oh my, this is brilliant" shudder.

In fact, this box set is 99% brilliant. The only reason it misses out on that 1 measly per cent is that the aforementioned Cameron (J.Morrison) is not in one of the episodes (plot arc reasons). And thats pants, because i love her.

Otherwise, quite simply the best medical drama-comedy there is, and come ten years time, this will be in the annals as a classic. Tremendous.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 22 September 2007
I am absolutely obsessed with this show. It is intelligent, interesting, funny and totally absorbing.

Of course the main reason for the show's success has to be the wonderful cast. Hugh Laurie is superb! I have always watched Hugh in programmes like Blackadder and I was concerned to begin with that it would be impossible for him to be convincing as a serious actor. I needn't have worried... he heads the show spectacularly... as his numerous awards prove! Robert Sean Leonard is a pleasant surprise. I hadn't seen any of his work before but I find that he is one of my favourite actors in the show. He's a brilliant comic actor. The rest of the cast are brilliant too and the guest stars are always great additions.

I have to admit that I am relieved that the show's structure is being changed for Season 4 as it could get a bit boring after a while with each episode following more or less the same outline. it's good to see a show that isn't afraid to change so that viewers are kept interested.

As far as the DVD's themselves are concerned- i haven't experienced any problems. The extra's are great too... especially the blooper reel!

House is a character that you love to hate... which makes for extremely interesting viewing. I can't wait to see what Season 4 has to offer.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 7 September 2005
This is possibly the greatest medical drama programe ever. It really puts E.R. to shame showing how repetetive and boring their story lines have really gotten. It is also one of the best first seasons I have seen in a long time. A great cast that work well together including Jesse Spencer of Neighbour's fame and Hugh Laurie from the Stuart Little movies. A must for anyone who likes good TV.
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