During a conference call with executive producer David Shore, NiceGirlsTV found out what lies ahead on the murky horizon of House M.D. Now that House is on the verge of an 8th season, looking back at how fast is has come and the journey it has taken, David shared how the show has exceeded his expectations “in every single way.”
He elaborated by sharing, “I know this sounds ridiculous, but I wasn’t even imagining 150 episodes. It’s not like I thought, ‘Could it go 150 episodes? Maybe, no—‘ or even it’s not even like I thought, ‘could it go 150 episodes?’ and I said ‘no.’ It didn’t even occur to me, which is so bizarre. The whole thing has just been a wonderful, exciting ride to be able to take this character and explore him for 150 episodes — 151 episodes –152 episodes. It’s just been amazing. At the beginning, I just didn’t think there were that many medical maladies we could deal with. I was hoping we’d get a bit of a niche audience. I was hoping this character would touch base with enough weirdoes out there, but apparently, there’s a lot more weirdoes out there than I thought.”
Addressing the thorny issue of the Huddy relationship and whether there will be a return to “normalcy” of the prior seasons, David was loathe to describe the upcoming direction of the show as a return to normalcy. He carefully explained, “I hate the [idea of a] return to normalcy because I was very pleased with what we did with that. I thought we did something that, in my opinion, could have gone very wrong, and when you’ve got millions of viewers, a number of them are going to believe it did go very wrong. But we worked very hard to keep House as House, and Cuddy as Cuddy, and have fun with them in a relationship rather than—and never to just—one of the directives was less smiling. I never wanted to see either of them just content and happy.” So, while a faction of fans may have reacted negatively to the natural progression of the Huddy relationship, there may still yet be hope for the romantics at heart in the future.
When queried whether there have been roads or storylines that he regrets taking with the show, David candidly admitted, “I don’t lose sleep over it. That’s not to say I’ve been thrilled with everything I’ve done, but I am pretty good at kind of accepting that that’s what we did, and learning in the sense of going forward hopefully a slightly different perspective. But, there have been a couple things over the years, and I’d rather not mention them. I don’t want to feed the fire.”
David was much more forthcoming about the balance between producing and writing and how he prioritizes each. He explained, “Writing is everything. I’m very uncomfortable referring to myself as a producer. I’m a writer. Obviously, a certain amount of my job is producing. That’s the part of the job that I always feel like I’m playing hooky when I’m doing that part of the job, because my real job is writing and overseeing the writing and making sure the scripts all rise to the same level that I want them to be at.”
Sharing a bit about where Thirteen (Olivia Wilde) has been since she was last seen on the show, David revealed, “I obviously don’t want to give anything away to the audience before they watch the episode, but it was all about the reason [Thirteen] was in prison more than the fact that she was in prison.” As he further explained, “There’s obviously a very emotional reason behind it, and a very personal reason behind it. So we had a wonderful combination dramatically of an ultimately personal reason and a very provocative start to the episode and then a lovely long mystery, so that was it. We bandied around a lot about ideas . . . but it made a lot of sense. It told us something about her. It connected us deeper to her, and it was a lovely little mystery for the episode.”
Just as Thirteen returns, there is the impending exit of Amber Tamblyn’s character, Masters. David would only offer that there is an upcoming Masters-centric episode, which shall explain what lies ahead for her character. As for Amber, David was enthusiastic as he shared, “[We] loved her. She’s great. The plan was never to have her stay forever, but it became very, very tempting –then we did an episode dealing with exactly that.”
With the return of one team member and the door closing on another, Dr. Gregory House’s world is shifting yet again – particularly as he is still reeling from the break up with Cuddy. So as David admitted, House is looking for “distractions.” Anything to get his mind off his personal loss. Whether Thirteen will be a sufficient enough “distraction” or just another blip on House’s myopic-radar is yet to be seen, but David would love to have Olivia back for the next season as well should the show return.
In the ongoing journey of self-discovery, there have been glimpses in to the heart and soul of House, and David is anxious to continue exploring that particular story as the show continues. He shared, “That is a question that’s been there since day one. . . . He is a human being. He is not an automaton. . . . [yet we created] a character that’s all about rationality and searching for objective truth. We were conscious from Day One not to let him fall into a Spock-type of character. He is a human being. That is all I’ll say about that. I hope he’s a human being. . . . it was important to us that he be multi-dimensional.” After all, the show is not as much about medical mysteries, as it is about the mystery of House. Who is the man and where will his journey take him?
While nothing is yet decided about an 8th season, and given the recent news of Robert Sean Leonard’s possible Broadway commitments that may impede with his ability to work on House, David was optimistic that it would not be an issue. He even mentioned, “I’m operating on the assumption that he’s going to be back, and negotiations are ongoing. We love [Robert], and we value him . . . That relationship [between House and Wilson] is, I think, one of the cornerstones of this show — that male friendship thing is one of the things I’m proudest of on the show, just the whole exploration of male friendship in, I think, a more honest way than a lot of shows, unfortunately, do it.”
As for whether there will be a season 8, David was just as cautiously said, “I would be absolutely astounded if there wasn’t. We are working on the assumption that there will be. As you all know, there is no deal in place, but negotiations are ongoing and FOX wants to have a Season Eight and NBC Universal wants them to have a Season Eight. So I fully expect there to be a Season Eight, and we’re proceeding on that basis.”
With so many big relationship changes upcoming in House’s life, there is certain to be some significant surprises, along with a few twists and turns as the remainder of this season plays out. Fans are not going to want to miss a single second of it!
House airs Monday nights at 8:00 p.m. on Fox.