Television Top Trumps - Greg House vs Tom James

Hugh Laurie, that great American actor who’s actually British is doing a term in Veep. But how does his politician Tom James stack up against Greg House, the role that made him famous to Americans and people who never paid attention to Blackadder?

LOOK

House: Exceedingly scruffy in a strangely sexual way. Gets into a skirmish over his refusal to wear a white coat or look at all like a doctor. But does have some excellent canes and a superb trainer collection. 8/10

Tom James: Clean-cut, clean-shaven, clean-suited. And nowhere near as oddly appealing as House is, although President Selina Meyer has got a bit of a possibly past tense but maybe not quite past after all thing for him. 6/10

SOB STORY

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House: Dead leg muscle, lost girlfriend, mean Dad who’s not really his Dad – House hasn’t had a great run. But he does have lots and lots of vicodin, which makes him feel much better. 7/10

Tom James: Has a disabled son, and was wounded serving his country. But this seemingly tragic past actually works as a bonus in the morally dubious world of Washington. Because apparently Washington is a bit like the X Factor and everyone needs to have overcome some personal tragedy to be in with any chance of winning anything. 8/10

CONTENTIOUS VIEWS

House: Too many to type. Drugs are good. Everyone lies. Whatever patient he’s treating is either an idiot or a liar or both. 90% of what he says is for the shock value. The other 10% is either trying to cure a patient or trying to not get saddled with a patient. 9/10

Tom James: Speaks what is quite possibly the truth when asked a question about guns, which is clearly one of the most contentious things a politician can do. Doesn’t he know they’re meant to lie for a living? Honestly. Someone tell the man to talk to House. 7/10

INTELLECT

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House: Absolutely huge, as you’d expect from a world-renowned doctor who solves the cases no-one else ever can. Even if he always makes at least three wrong diagnoses first, but let’s blame that on the need to fill 42 minutes of television and build suspense rather than any lapses in his medical judgement. 9/10

Tom James: You’d assume that he’s got to be pretty smart to be running for Vice President, but we are talking about a country that elected George W Bush as their actual president. Still, he does show the makings of a diabolical genius in a nice man’s suit. 8/10

CHARM

House: His secret weapon. Possibly so secret that it doesn’t really exist. Either way, it’s buried deep under a whole load of misanthropy, grumpiness and acting like a bit of a knobber. But it maybe is in there somewhere. It’s just hiding well. 4/10

Tom James: The man is 100% pure charm. Or, if you’re an Apprentice candidate, 1000%. He’s so damn charming that he manages to upstage President Selina wherever he goes, which she’s never too happy about. Until he charms her a bit more. We told you, he’s a diaboloical genius. 10/10

SNEAKY TRICKS

House: Pretty much everything House does is a sneaky trick. The man fakes his own death, for God’s sake. That’s about as sneaky as you get. 9/10

Tom James: That is, faking your own death is about as sneaky as you can get unless you’re Tom James. For the man uses his charm and diabolical genius to totally outsmart and out-campaign his own running mate and end up in a position where he could be the next leader of the free world. Or at the very least, where he’s got out on stage before the current leader of the free world and managed to make her look pretty damn stupid. Now THAT is as sneaky as you get. 10/10


THE VERDICT

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Tom James claims it, with a score of 49 to House’s 46. Which just goes to prove that you really should never trust a man with two first names.

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