Housecleaning: Olivia Wilde

I decided to empty out my notebook of all the past House-related stories I’ve written, and despite complaints last week from commenter “James” that Olivia Wilde is a blight both upon the show and the American potato crop, I’m proceeding with a short profile I wrote on her last year, still timely given that she remains on the show in the role of Thirteen. (If you’ve never watched House, you may remember Wilde as the bisexual Alex Kelly on The O.C.) You can find the article here.

Our interview had an interesting preamble. I drove to Venice to meet Wilde for brunch. As I was parallel-parking my car, I came too close to the curb and gouged my right rear hubcap on an open sewer grate. I stepped out of the car to survey the damage–and promptly, a woman driving a black SUV tried to steal my parking space.

“Come on!” I shouted, throwing my hands up in the air in an indignant gesture.

“Alright, keep your hair on,” the woman said in a snide tone, and drove on.

I went into the restaurant and waited for Wilde. Ten minutes she showed up, and–I suspect you’re way ahead of me on this–she was the woman from the black SUV. We had a good laugh about it; she said she had been listening to a David Sedaris book-on-tape in the car, and she felt like she had now had her own awkward Sedaris-style encounter.

As mentioned previously, we had a very entertaining brunch, talking about her, her famous relatives, and her famous dog. Read through to the end to get her advice on how to shut down Los Angeles freeways for the purpose of throwing a party. This article appeared in a much shorter form in last October’s “Hot Issue” of Rolling Stone, cut down dramatically in favor of printing a sexy photo of Wilde as large as possible. (A choice, of course, that would have been made by pretty much every magazine editor since the beginning of time.)

posted 15 September 2008 in Archives, Articles and tagged , , , . 5 comments

5 Comments on Housecleaning: Olivia Wilde

  1. Scraps Says:

    Has the plot secret been revealed yet?

  2. Gavin Says:


    Her mother died from Huntington’s disease, but that she herself did not know if she carried the gene (deliberately not knowing so as not to limit her horizons). In the final episode of last season, Thirteen finally did the genetic testing and found out that she does, indeed, have the Huntington’s gene.

  3. Gavin Says:

    (As plot twists go, it was medium satisfying. Didn’t feel like a cheat, didn’t feel revelatory.)

  4. Scraps Says:

    Ah. A friend of mine — you know her, Gavin — has chosen not to get herself tested in a similar situation (different genetic condition, father had it, brother has it).

  5. Gavin Says:

    I’m sympathetic to that choice; it’s hard to say for sure what I’d do in that situation, but I suspect I’d want to know.

    It’s an interesting idea for a character, too–I think it may have just received too much buildup on the show before the Big Reveal.

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