House: Cane and Able

Something extraordinary happened in this week’s episode of House, titled “Cane and Able”: I kind liked Cameron (Jennifer Morrison).

Which was strange because her behavior wasn’t that different from the usual: she got a bee in her bonnet about something and proceeded the crusade about it for the episode. The difference was, for once she got to make the argument the audience was meant to sympathize with, instead of playing the foil to House.

Then I realized there was just less of her in this episode. We saw more of Chase, Cuddy and Wilson than usual, which relegated Cameron’s Joan of Arc routine to the background, where it belongs. It’s amazing how my sympathy shifts when an annoying character isn’t being pushed forward like a co-lead. I mean, I think I’d grow to hate Chase, Foreman or Wilson if they got the amount of screentime Cameron was getting last season.

Meanwhile, Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) is getting more screentime, and a story arc that links her more closely to House. Naturally, I’m on board with this: I love the actress, and so far Cuddy’s been a fun character. But will she fall apart upon closer examination? I hope not. Stacy (Sela Ward) didn’t, but then she didn’t have the burden of being the, ahem, leading lady. I’m hoping this show doesn’t think it needs a “leading lady” at all, but rather a great ensemble to surround its star. If they get that, I’m optimistic.

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