I have a reinforced understanding of medical tv shows as America’s primary expression of horror fiction. On any number of levels.
Related: the whole thing is really an extended meditation on death. And, remember, this was one of America’s most popular tv shows. When you’re ignoring the plots and just half-listening to the dialogue, it becomes a weird endless sequence of studies on the permanent fog of death, how we approach it, how we prepare for it, and how there is nothing beyond it. House, the mighty atheist explorer, even goes there to look at one point, sticking a knife in a power socket to peek behind the veil and ensure the room beyond is empty. For eight years, America told itself a long story about death and the ways in which it comes, using the body of an English comedian to do it. And the wondrous, awful thing about it is that it never really backs off. House is always a brutal Modernist hero, the idealised American hospital (that most Americans will never see anything like) is still a waiting room for the graveyard, and death is always a hopeless final function that brings no peace. It is a hundred and seventy hour long dialogue on the end. That is an almost magically nihilist thing.