What Do Gregory House And Sherlock Holmes Have In Common?

By Victor O

House M.D. is a subtle adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, featuring Dr. Gregory House and his team of doctors solving strange medical cases. This show specifically references Holmes and focuses on medicine, setting it apart from other adaptations.

Source: House M.D.

1. Holmes and House share a passion for music

House’s musical abilities pay tribute to Sherlock Holmes, with whom he shares a passion for music. While Holmes is a skilled violin player, House’s musical abilities extend to playing various instruments. Although this ability is a minor detail, it adds a layer of complexity to House’s character.

The Character Moriarty

Another element House M.D. incorporates from Sherlock Holmes is Jack Moriarty, who shares a name with Holmes’ arch-nemesis. Moriarty seeks revenge on House for his wife’s suicide and shoots House before being shot by the hospital security, mirroring Moriarty and Holmes’ encounter at Reichenbach Falls.

Dr. John Wilson as a companion

House’s relationship with his friend, Dr. Wilson, echoes that of Holmes and Dr. Watson. Wilson is a doctor who worries about House’s drug use, similar to Watson’s concerns for Holmes. Despite the differences, their dynamic provides a similar contrast to that of Watson and Sherlock. 

Source: House M.D.

House’s struggle with addiction

One major similarity between Dr. House and Sherlock Holmes is their drug addiction. Sherlock is known to use substances like tobacco, morphine, and cocaine to occupy his mind, while House struggles with a painkiller addiction throughout the show, initially using them to ease the pain of his leg injury but eventually getting addicted to them.

Holmes and House stage their death

Holmes and House both share a moment where their protagonists fake their deaths. In Sherlock Holmes’s stories, Holmes faked his death to avoid his enemies, while House faked his death to evade prison and be with his dying friend Wilson. The series creates significant links to Homes while maintaining its identity as a show.