House creator writes from gut
Rescuing that relationship will consume the thoughts of Dr. House for much of the season to come.
Beyond that, Shore says, no one knows, least of all, him. He has never been one to map out entire seasons in advance. House came together by osmosis; neither by accident nor design.
“We changed last season on our own terms, without being pushed for change,” Shore said in an interview with Canwest News Service.
House introduced several new characters last season, three of whom – Peter Jacobson’s Dr. Taub, Kal Penn’s Dr. Kutner and Olivia Wilde’s Thirteen – will be part of the series’ regular ensemble this season.
“It made sense that that would happen after three seasons,” Shore explained. “It’s a three-year fellowship. Nobody’s going to work with this guy ad infinitum after suffering three years of being subject to his every whim. It would have felt like a real television convention to keep the same people together.”
Shore doesn’t take his cue from the audience for House’s stories, nor does he pay much attention to network executives – who have been surprisingly hands-off, Shore hastens to add. He writes from the gut. He sees what’s working, senses where the characters’ relationships are going, and then takes it from there.
“Because, quite often, things just happen.”
Some of House’s strongest episodes revolve around children. In the second-season episode Autopsy, written by veteran House and Family Law staff writer Lawrence Kaplow, (Family Law, which aired on CBS from 1999-2002, was another of Shore’s TV producing projects) a young girl dying of terminal cancer begins to suffer hallucinations. The episode was raw, painful and emotionally wrenching, without being mawkish. It won the 2005 Writers Guild of America Award for episodic drama.
“House’s character allows us to push hard,” Shore said. “We don’t do shmaltz. We fight against sentimentality, and we fight against earnestness. But we do have a heart, beating in there somewhere. And Hugh Laurie is really accomplished at bringing that across.
“We’re able to be shmaltzy without actually coming out and saying it. By saying something the exact opposite of what you mean, sometimes you reach for something much deeper. It works so much better than saying something straight out.”