By Margaret Lyons
March 16, 2010 at 04:06 PM EDT
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Image Credit: Richard Foreman/FoxNo Lucas, plenty of Taub, lots of Wilson — last night’s House sounds like a dream come true. Except… what a case of the blahs. A young woman’s illness was caused by sex? You don’t say! House was outrageously, humorlessly crotchety? Oh, that’s fun! Thirteen’s hair looked really pretty? Well, I have to give her that. If only the rest of “Black Hole” were as lustrous as Thirteen’s locks.

Our PotW was Abby, a high school student whose mouth-bleeding symptoms started during a school trip to the planetarium. The second they showed her giggling with her boyfriend, it was pretty clear this was going to be another case of “sex will kill you, possibly through a semen allergy.” House was obsessed with the idea that Abby’s hallucinations were giving clues as to the source of her maladies, which even among the kooky medical theories this show has put forth is still a doozy. Just ask Foreman, who totally agreed with me. Of course, House was right, and through a series of cockamamie “brain imaging” sequences, the team discovered the poor girl’s father was to blame. Wait, not her father — her boyfriend‘s father, whom she totally boned. Ha! Keep it in your pants, kids.

Because the crisis-o’-the-week lacked the narrative impact the show sometimes manages, we were left with two other story lines to do the heavy lifting: House hassling Wilson about buying furniture, and Taub maybe being a total sleezebag adulterer again. At Chez Hilson, our beloved bromantic duo argued over home furnishings; Wilson wanted to just hire a decorator and be done with it, but House was mad (or…something…) that that would just be another example of Wilson substituting a woman’s taste for his own. Back and forth they went, all the while not mentioning that recliner sofa from a few weeks ago (ruined in the sprinkler flood?), or that Chorus Line poster they both seemed to agree on. The only upshot of this bickering was that Wilson spent some time in a home furnishings store, giving Robert Sean Leonard a cute little montage of fussy discomfort.

But I can’t help but wonder what the point of all of House’s nagging was. It makes sense, sort of, when he acts bratty to get what he wants, when there’s a clear self-serving mission at work. What was the House objective here? To get Wilson to buy him a Hammond organ? (That was a Hammond organ… right?) I like “Whiter Shade of Pale” and all, but that’s not enough of a reason.

On the Taub front, he and his passive-aggressive wife argued about trust, because back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, Taub cheated. Remember? I do, because it’s the only thing we’ve ever learned about Taub. He lamely asked Chase for marriage advice — wrong tree, dude — and weakly lied to House about being late, but he seemed genuinely dedicated to renewing his vows and whatnot until the very last scene, when we saw him acting overly familiar with a nurse. It’s not solid proof, duh, but since when does House (or House) need cold hard facts?

Best line

House to Foreman: Anyone ever tell you you’re a real buzzkill?

Everyone: Yes.

I just didn’t get “Black Hole.” Why this week? What stories did it advance or transform? What do we know now that we didn’t before? House is such a fantastic show, and it’s capable of such interesting stories and techniques — I hate watching it tread water with filler episodes like this.

What did you think, PopWatchers? Did “Black Hole” suck you in?

Hugh Laurie and Lisa Edelstein star in the hit medical mystery series
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