I both loved and hated this episode. Let's start with the hate. I called my mother about 30 seconds after the episode ended. Turns out she was heading for the phone. Ah, great minds. We both agreed that Vogler and Chase are assholes amongst other things, but I like to keep my LJ clean. We then debated which of the two was worse. She has issues, rightly so, with how Vogler is being written in the role of hospital chair. It doesn't matter how much money you give, no way could he saunter into a patients room, flip through their chart, all the time playing mind games with the staff. Forget about why they are there for, it's much more fun pitting everyone against each other. Does the guy still have a wife? Because he seems to get off just fine manipulating everybody.
After contemplating this a bit, I have to say as much as I hate/loathe/despise/wish to eviscerate Vogler and I'll be raising a glass of whatever liquor I have on hand to toast his departure (and please let it be of House's doing), I think I'm actually more pissed off at Chase. As horrible a human being as Vogler is, at least you know what you are getting with him. He's in your face and loving it. Chase, on the other hand, is playing the rat to the big cheese, stabbing everyone in the back in some pathetic attempt to save his job. Combine this with his repulsive behavior towards his patient and her mother he seems to have completly lost sight of why he is there. As Foreman put it so well "he wants the job, but doesn't appreciate it".
Now, I'm left to look back and try to find out at what point Chase became the person he is right now. Or I wonder if there were clear signs of this coming. My mother thought Cahse was rather blah at the beginning of the series, perhaps this is the writers way of giving the character more depth by giving him less character. At some point I'm sure House will discover Chase's duplicity and he and the others will make his life hell well into next season. After all, firing him would be too easy, they need to make him suffer. (On a side note, I wonder if Foreman picked up on Chase calling Vogler "Boss". House would be his immediate superior and Vogler was making a show of introducing himself to House's underlings, supposedly for the first time. For me, it was a tell.)
What I did love about the episode was that, sorry folks, I was given some reasons to warm to the idea of Cameron and House being more than what they are now. To start with, she seems to have found that backbone she misplaced. It was more of a hammer than an anvil, but it's clear that their conversations had little to do with Cameron's work performance and a lot to do with feelings she expressed and he hasn't. "It figures you'd stall and refuse to deal with the issue. The problem is the world doesn't work that way just because you want it to." As Benedick said in 'Much Ado about Nothing' - I think there is a double meaning in that. ;)
House is stalling on who to fire. He cares for Cameron, but is that a reason to keep her or get rid of her? If she's out of sight, then perhaps out of mind and he can avoid dealing with any messy feelings he has for her. At the same time, is the isolation starting to take it's toll on House? One zinger Cameron threw at him that, damn, even I didn't pick up on (I blame my anger issues ;) was that if he was confidant that his daignosis was correct "Then why aren't you watching TV or playing your damn Game Boy or whatever else you have so much fun doing by yourself." The look he gives her off that shows she has an understands of him and thus far I've only seen one other person have that kind of understanding, Wilson. (Side note the second, my mother commented on the importance of Robert Sean Leonard to the show, how Wilson's relationship with House adds so much to the story, and that they really needed to find a way to utilize him more. At that point, I tried to explain the segment fandom that saw a lot more than friendship between them at which point I got the "I didn't meant that way!" and we moved on. ;)
Two other things I found of interest.....it was telling that House asked both Cameron and Foreman for their opinions as to who to let go (and while Cameron was predictable in finding a solution where no one gets hurt, hey, it was a good idea), Chase's opinion was never asked for. Not exactly a surprise since House probably knew as well as I that he'd pick Cameron, but it also showed a lack of trust in his judgement. Those trust issues may have been the logical reason to give him the boot.
The other thing I took note of is when House is discussing happiness with Wilson and Wilson pointedly states that he's happy...with his job. Huh. Trouble with wife number 3?
All and all I found this to be an average episode which still makes it vastly superior to most of the dreck on the air. Some good (and bad) character moments, but the girls illness was rather uninteresting and Vogler's antics were proposterous. And what the hell happened to Cuddy? Did Cameron steal the backbone from her?