Dr. Kutner's Suicide... America's Gain

Watching HOUSE M.D. (still my number 1 show) last night, I was astounded, along with millions of others, when Dr. Kutner, played by actor Kal Penn, was found dead on his apartment floor, an apparent suicide victim. This was an electric episode (with the night's medical plot featuring a dying husband and wife... with the husband played very well by...get this... Meatloaf!) and drove me to the HOUSE web site immediately after to find a Memorial Page already set up to the memory of Dr. Kutner.

Why... why did they kill off one of the most popular (and funny) characters on the show? Money? Backstage conflict?

The reason is striking: Kal Penn is going to work at the White House!

I was incredibly honored a couple of months ago to get the opportunity to go work in the White House. I got to know the President and some of the staff during the campaign and had expressed interest in working there, so I'm going to be the associate director in the White House office of public liaison. They do outreach with the American public and with different organizations. They're basically the front door of the White House. They take out all of the red tape that falls between the general public and the White House. It's similar to what I was doing on the campaign.
...said Penn in an Entertainment Weekly interview.

Penn got involved during the campaign with a group called Asian Americans for Obama. Here's a video from the campaign:

Under The LobsterScope

Tags: House, Kal Penn, suicide (all tags)



Re: Dr. Kutner's Suicide... America's Gain

I'm happy for Kal Penn, and I have much respect for him for getting involved. Perhaps more actors SHOULD get involved in politics in this way rather than use their celebrity to try and win elections. It could not only inspire young people to get into government, it would also allow the actors to serve government while not making themselves an issue.


It's not my gain, because the show will suck at least in the short term. Kutner had become the comic relief that Chase always provided, and that the show desperately needs, even moreso now. So now we need a House-Wilson war, House-Cuddy war (neither of which seem likely), or some other character to step it up and start getting quippy. I don't like it.

Kal Penn, you have screwed me!!!

by vcalzone 2009-04-07 07:02AM | 0 recs
I don't watch House

But Kal Penn is a good actor and a cool guy all around.  Good for him.

From the job description, he seems great for the job.  Smart of the Obama administration to pick an actor for outreach work.

by Dracomicron 2009-04-07 08:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Dr. Kutner's Suicide... America's Gain

I'd like to think that Kal Penn was personally responsible for the scene in Harold and Kumar where the Dougie Hauser actor drives past them snorting cocaine off of a stripper's ass.

by Jess81 2009-04-07 09:20AM | 0 recs
Good times

I look forward to Penn getting back to acting one day.  We need a third Harold and Kumar movie!

In the meantime though, I am happy for Penn.

by Skaje 2009-04-07 10:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Dr. Kutner's Suicide... America's Gain

I used to watch House, but stopped just because it seemed like I was watching the same episode over and over again.

They admit patient.  Patient complains about strange marks on his body.  They ex-ray patient.  The marks go away.  They're about to send patient home when...


They perform more tests and rediagnose patient.  They figure out what's causing him to turn green, cure it when...


so House has his people take blood, urine and stool samples, biopsy half of the man's brain, and interview all of his childhood friends - and, of course, crunches on percosets all the way through it.  Finally...

OMG HOUSE.  YOU'RE SENDING HOME!!!  What did you give him?

House: A new shirt.  He's allergic to polyester.

**credits roll**

These days I just watch Lost, although even that was starting to disappoint with it getting all Harry Potter a few episodes ago with the candles and the woman with the cloak and the "God help us all" stuff.  I think every episode should have more of Ben and Sayid.  I just watch it for those two, although not necessarily in the same scene.

by Jess81 2009-04-07 10:18AM | 0 recs

Wow.  I did have that DVR'd to watch today.  I wonder what happens at the end.

Couldn't you have at least been SLIGHTLY ambiguous about what happened and left the details outside the title?

by quixote27 2009-04-07 10:28AM | 0 recs
Re: Spoiler

Good point.

Yeah diarist, seriously.  Not cool.  A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine included the climax of the episode of Lost for that week, which is a major turning point, and now I'm afraid to look there.

by Jess81 2009-04-07 10:32AM | 0 recs


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