This week, Wilson takes center stage doing what he does best: being everyone’s BFF and port of calm in the various storms that rip through the lives of those closest to him. In terms of diagnostics and perception, living with House has rubbed off on Wilson. Even better, the dear fellow is starting to grow a pair of his own!
Things kick off as Wilson wakes up to the mellow strains of House doing an acoustic guitar rendition of George Michael’s “Faith” at 6:33 in the morning. When he tells House that he’s going back to sleep and then going turkey hunting with his friend, Tucker, House interjects that Wilson’s buddy is a Self-Important Jerk. Pot. Kettle. Black. However, House maintains that even though he himself is something of a jerk, he at least has the decency to call Wilson “Wilson” or “James” and not “Jim” like ol’ Tucker does.
While hunting, Wilson’s friend recites his “I kicked Leukemia’s ass” speech for the fifth year running. Moments later, Tucker hits the deck, unable to move his arm, which is contorted in a weird position. The opening credits roll and once again, we’re back at Princeton-Plainsboro. As Tucker awaits the results of the diagnostics, Wilson mistakes the pretty young thing at Tucker’s bedside for his daughter. Instead, Ashley is actually Tucker’s girlfriend in brave, new, cancer-free world. In Tucker’s awesome post-cancer world, he chucked aside his wife, Melissa, and teenage daughter, Emily who stuck with him through his illness for a much newer, shinier, more fun lifestyle! Speaking of fun lifestyles, Ashley’s got wicked cold sore that, having been kissing the dude, may have caused Tucker’s temporary paralysis.
When Wilson flounces towards House telling him that he had “A House Moment,” diagnosing his friend with Transverse Myolitis, House insists instead that Self-Important Jerk’s cancer is back like Jordan. Insulting Wilson’s prowess as a doctor and citing that he cares too much for his patients, House goads him into making a $100 bet that Self-Important Jerk really does have a cancer relapse.
While Wilson plays God to House’s Devil to Tucker’s Job, Wilson manages to go about his day sprinkling sweetness and light throughout the cancer-riddled corridors of his oncology domain. Throughout the course of an episode, he helps an old man named Saul sleep (in a non-Kevorkian, non-morphine O.D. way that he had alluded to a few episodes ago) and diagnoses and cures a spot on another old man’s lungs, purely on the basis that the proud grandfather was depressed and not talking about his grand kids. Somehow, Grandpa’s depression was the sign of another sort of cancer complication, but sweet, savvy Wilson figured it all out – like House without the awesomely douche-y factor!
In the midst of all this work, Wilson still must remain the stalwart shoulder of support for all parties involved when Cuddy drops the bombshell that she’s (already?!) moving in with Lucas. (What was that? Six episodes?) Even better, Cuddy asks Wilson to call his ex-wife Bonnie, the realtor, to see if she can find her a dream house/loft. (Why don’t you just blow your nose on Wilson’s lapel, too, Cuddy!?) Placed in an awkward position, Wilson breaks the news to House who ponders Cuddy’s decision to get a loft. He wonders just how serious her relationship with Lucas is and if this is her version of a midlife crisis.
Meanwhile, when Self-Important Jerk’s meds aren’t working and he can’t feel his foot, he asks Wilson to call his daughter to his bedside, just in case it really is cancer. His teenage daughter, Emily, is hesitant to come but eventually shows up with her mother – Tucker’s ex – in tow. A nice buffer to the Big Bowl o’ Awkward, Tucker starts coughing controlling uncontrollably and requires a crash cart. Wilson gets him stabilized and poses Tucker’s case to the rest of the group on the premise that any diagnosis other than cancer will make House $100 poorer. They jump at the chance and deduce that it could be a big ball of fungus that’s attached to his spine and causing him problems.
Wilson suggests operating, but before Tucker goes under, he asks him why he and his ex are no longer together and he’s jumped aboard the Young Ship Ashley. Tucker can’t really explain, or just hedges the question. When Tucker’s opened up, Chase spots something that looks suspiciously like pneumonia. House gets a fondue in his panties, musing about how this compromised immune system probably means Tucker has cancer. When the results are back, House finds himself $100 richer as he cheerily breaks the news that Tucker has cancer… Again.
The type of cancer Tucker has this time is Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, a second type of leukemia caused by the chemo they gave him before to treat his first type of cancer. This time, the cancer has localized in his brain with a 90% cure rate.
Forced to make a decision right away, Tucker tells Ashley that his ex-wife, Melissa, is his healthcare proxy and Ashley throws a sniveling fit since she thinks that means Tucker loves Melissa more. Tucker protests that it doesn’t mean that he loves Ashley any less, it’s just that Melissa has been through this before and knows what to do. When the chemo doesn’t work and Tucker still can’t feel his appendages, Wilson realizes that the chemo from the first round gave his friend’s system a resistance to chemo, rendering him almost incurable. Almost.
Wilson hits upon yet another plan to cure Tucker, which renders the cancer gone within a scant 24 hours. The downside is, Tucker’s liver is shot, as evidenced by his Scutt Farkas-like yellow eyes. If Wilson can’t find Tucker a new liver, he’s toast in 24 hours. Since none of his women or daughter match his blood type, a live liver donation isn’t possible.
House busts in to tell Wilson that a trauma victim just arrived with great news for Tucker’s potential new liver. The catch is that there’s no donor card and his sister refuses to give up her dead brother’s liver. When they consult the dead dude’s sister, she denies the liver on the grounds that her religion prevents her from defiling a dead body… And that giving up his liver is essentially like peeing on a corpse. This ends up a moot point since the hospital pages Wilson to tell him that the liver has started to decompose and is no longer able to be transplanted.
Back at the hospital, a bedridden Tucker is making up for lost time with his daughter and ex-wife who stood by him through Cancer-Palooza 1. He even finds time to accuse Wilson of giving him only 24 hours with his newly-reunited family as opposed to the six months he would have had if he never went with the chemo option in the first place. Self-Important Jerk Friend then suggests that since Wilson gave him his blood for a transfusion last time, he should give him a lobe of his liver to attempt to pull him through this time. Wilson hesitates and is wracked with guilt, going out to drown his sorrows with some hooch… which is just terrific for the liver!
Stumbling in relatively sober, Wilson sees that House has made a dazzling array of Jello shots in test tubes and is getting slammed on his couch. He tells House of his conundrum and House offers a pep talk/dose of truth that Wilson is a doormat and his “friend” Tucker is – cancer or no cancer – a Self-Important Jerk. Wilson shows House how much of a doormat he is by telling House to get his stuff and get the hell out.
The next morning, Wilson tells Cuddy he will be donating part of his liver to Tucker and then tells House. Wilson also asks House to be there with him as he’s on the operating table. (Even though he just booted them out of their apartment/adult dorm room. House declines on the grounds that if Wilson dies, he’s truly alone – perhaps the sweetest thing House could ever say to someone. As Wilson goes under the anesthesia, he sees House looking down at him from his observation perch and smiles. Awwww… Now that’s man love!
In recovery, House pals around with Wilson and Wilson later pals around with Tucker, learning that now that he’s made a full recovery, that whole “going back with my ex-wife and daughter who loves me” schpiel has been thrown out the window. He’s back with hot, young Ashley, citing that “the person you want when you’re dying isn’t the person you want when you’re living.” Wilson is grossed out by his friend’s shallow about-face and admits House was right on both carts that Tucker did have cancer and that Tucker was a Self-Important Jerk. However, he does tell Tucker that his name is “James,” not “Jim.” Oh, well… The liver regenerates itself, Wilson. At least you didn’t totally damage yourself for a douchebag!
Even though he’s usually the “go-to guy” for being the shoulder to cry on, Wilson vents his “disappointment” with Tucker (rhymes with….) to House. House responds that “disappointment is anger for wimps.” Knowing that in spite of everything, House is the one guy he can always count on to be honest with him, Wilson breaks the news to House that they’re moving in together again… This time, to a bigger place. Deciding that if he had to call his ex-wife that he may as well benefit from the deal, Wilson outbids Cuddy on the dream loft she wants to share with Lucas. Wilson declares his spot on “Team House” saying that “she hurt my friend, she needs to be punished.” Wilson gleefully smiles knowing that the Odd Couple is reunited.
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