Has House run out of medical mysteries? That's how it has really felt for the show this season, what with the episodes focusing on certain characters like Wilson and Cuddy and this week's episode having no real medical factor to it. This is not necessarily a bad thing; after six seasons it is not a crime to try and shake up the show and try new things. Except that fans start watching a show because they already like how it is being done, and they don't always appreciate being forced outside of the box. A note: Hugh Laurie directed this episode!
A couple is relaxing in the aftermath of their baby's birth, and the mother tries to deal with her sullen step-son and his fury toward the newborn little sister. She falls asleep and when she wakes up, the baby is missing! Cuddy puts the entire hospital on lockdown (thus the title) so they can find the baby, and everyone is forced to stay in whatever room or place they were in when the baby was taken. This means that the cast is split up into different pairings, and it focuses on specific partnerships this week rather than the whole cast. Wilson and Thirteen are stuck in the cafeteria, Foreman and Taub are down in the basement with all the personal files, Cuddy is with the nurses looking for the baby, House is stuck with a slowly dying patient, and Chase is stuck with his recently returned wife Cameron. This Recap is gong to be broken into partnerships now.
House and dying guy: They are probably the least interesting part of the episode, believe it or not. The psychoanalyzing of House only works when it is his best buddy Wilson doing it, because otherwise it just feels like someone else is being used as a mouthpiece for the writers. They want you to understand that House changed after he slept with that woman in the mental institute (really? her again?), and that's why he's decided he is not better off alone. He convinces the dying guy to call his daughter and leave a message. It's all pretty melodramatic and even a bit cliche, which is sad because the performances aren't terrible, it's just not very interesting. I found myself wanting to fast forward through these parts.
Cuddy and nurses: The next not-so-interesting part of the episode is the actual set up of everything. So the baby is missing and security is looking everywhere. Cuddy questions the nurses and the sullen little boy, who says he hates his sister but he didn't do anything to her. The parents are frantic, although not really as much as you'd expect, and Detective Cuddy figures out that the mother has extra towels for some reason. She looks at one of the nurses and realizes she's been having mini-seizures, maybe all day. She accidentally stole the baby just because she was going through the motions. The baby is in a laundry basket. Okay first of all, wouldn't the baby have been crying this whole time? It's newborn and weak and no doubt cold and hungry. Second of all, the security and people frantically searching the entire building didn't go in there and search great hiding places like a laundry basket? Fine, whatever, that's over.
Taub and Foreman: One part of the comic relief in the episode, these two are trapped downstairs and decide to look at House's private file. Unfortunately he's already messed with it so it doesn't matter. Then for some reason Foreman decides they should get high off Vicodin and hang out. What? Why would Foreman of all people suggest this? And why did he have the pills in the first place? Anyway they spend the episode being very high, which is amusing when they start hitting one another and running around wildly. They look at each other's files and are envious: Foreman because Taub did everything right, and Taub because Foreman made a few mistakes that he learned from. Taub removes the one glaring bad note on Foreman's file because now they're besties. It'd be cool to see them actually continue being friends. Oh and Taub is flashed by Thirteen on his way out. Which leads to ....
Thirteen and Wilson: The other episode comic relief, and it really is amusing. Wilson can make anyone a more sympathetic or interesting character, just by spending time with them. His sweetness knows no bounds! They decide to play Truth Or Dare and he admits that he wanted to ask his ex wife out, but he's afraid of what House will do. Thirteen's like huh, what does this have to do with House, and all the fans go uh oh, House is going to freak out. Has she not seen how possessive he is of his true love ... er ... best friend? She tells him a bit about her father, but everything she tells him turns out to be a lie anyway. She dares him to steal a one dollar bill from the cash register and what follows is one of the funniest Wilson scenes on the show so far. He botches it horribly, as you can imagine. She leaves having proven herself to be a pathological liar, but she had promised to flash Taub in a dare, so she does it on her way out.
Finally we have Chase and Cameron. It seems like they really wanted closure for this relationship, and her leaving the first time hadn't really worked out. They get locked in a very, very badly lit room and talk it out. She admits that she's incredibly messed up because she's not sure if she can stay with someone who won't die, and Chase gets whatever answers hew as looking for. He agrees to sign the divorce papers. Then they have one last dance and have sex. Like you do. It did seem a little fishy to make this all about Cameron's problems in the end, because Chase really did murder someone, but she has always been the waffling one in their relationship. This was a more proper send off for her and their split, so yay for that.
Not a bad episode all over ... the Ducklings/Numbers had the best lines and stories of the night. It's a shame that House's part was so boring to watch, but perhaps Hugh was just focused on directing the rest of the episode. I do miss the medical drama on the show, but next week it takes place at a Renaissance Faire, so that should be interesting. Or is it gimmicky? You decide!
House is on FOX Monday nights at 8 PM EST.