Dr. House: ...I hired you because you are extremely pretty.
Dr. Cameron: You hired me to get into my pants?!
Dr. House: I can't believe that that would shock you. It's also not what I said. No, I hired you because you look good; it's like having a nice piece of art in the lobby.
Dr. Cameron: I was in the top of my class.
Dr. House: But not THE top.
Dr. Cameron: I did an internship at the Mayo Clinic.
Dr. House: Yes, you were a very good applicant.
Dr. Cameron: But not the best?
Dr. House: Would that upset you, really? To think that you were hired because of some genetic gift of beauty, not some genetic gift of intelligence?
Dr. Cameron: I worked very hard to get where I am.
Dr. House: But you didn't have to. People choose the paths that grant them the greatest rewards for the least amount of effort. That's the law of nature, and you defied it. That's why I hired you. You could have married rich, could have been a model, you could have just shown up and people would have given you stuff. Lots of stuff, but you didn't, you worked your stunning little ass off.
House, discussing why he hired Cameron, in Pilot.
Allison Cameron was a member of Gregory House's diagnostic team during the first three seasons; a fellow in Diagnostic Medicine. She returns in the fourth season as the senior emergency room attending physician at Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital. She is a qualified immunologist. Cameron is portrayed by Jennifer Morrison. She was the youngest member of the team.
Since leaving House's team, Cameron has become the senior attending in the emergency room, and it appears Cuddy is about to hire her as an assistant administrator. Although she seems young for the position, it should be pointed out that Cuddy became head of medicine when she was barely older than Cameron.
Very little is known about Cameron's early life, but it is implied that unlike Foreman and Chase, her adolescence was rather uneventful. She finished high in her medical class and before joining the staff at Princeton-Plainsboro, she was on staff at the prestigious Mayo Clinic.
It appears that she has a big brother, although he is hardly ever mentioned in the show (see season 3, episode 17) and we don't know his name or what he looks like.
It is known that Cameron got married at the age of 21 to a man who had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Her husband died only six months after the wedding.
Relationship with House
House told Cameron that he only hired her for her looks. However, he later expanded on that by admitting that he surmised that because she was so good looking, she could have coasted into any sort of life and instead must have chosen to dedicate her life to medicine.
Cameron has expressed a romantic interest in House on several occasions, and they dated once (the one date was Cameron's condition for coming back to work). House has been apparently uninterested in pursuing a relationship - he told Cameron she tends to form relationships with people who need "fixing", and that it is his damaged personality that in fact draws her to him. House, however, betrays more than a passing interest in Cameron to Wilson in the episode Role Model when he reacts perceptibly to Wilson's comment about 'hitting on' Cameron. Although Cameron has stated that she is "over" House, neither her colleagues (nor Wilson or Cuddy) believe her. Both characters retain an ambiguous interest in the other. In No Reason House repeatedly fantasizes about Cameron, first for her abiding concern for his injury and later as he caresses her with a surgical robot. For her part Cameron lets slip to a documentary team in Ugly that she loves House and later we see her trying to convince herself that it was an innocent remark.
After Chase is fired and Foreman leaves in Human Error, Cameron hands her resignation to House, ostensibly because she has learned all she can from him. When House jokes about it, Cameron says that's exactly what she expected from him.
Since leaving House's team, Cameron has been far more authoritative with House, bringing him cases and pointing out how his quick diagnoses have been wrong. However, it appears she may be getting more authority over House, primarily due to her excellent administrative skills, honed by years of doing House's dictation and keeping up his charts.
Cameron could justifiably be described as sweet, trusting, and compassionate. Although these would appear to help make her an excellent doctor, House delights in pointing out how each one is a weakness to her ability to objectively deal with a patient. This criticism is not without merit. For example:
- When an infant died in Maternity, House sent Cameron to tell the patient's mother. When she protested, House told Wilson to follow her and make sure that she did her job. However, when confronting the parents, Cameron froze up and Wilson did the job for her.
- Cameron felt sorry for a woman who had cancer but no living family. As such, she failed to tell the patient she might have a terminal illness until she had ruled out every other possibility. She even refused to do the tests which would definitively prove it was cancer. Even Wilson admonished her for this.
- When a woman needed a liver transplant from her lesbian partner, Cameron wanted to tell the partner that the patient was planning on leaving her. House had to take extraordinary measures to keep her from doing so. In the end, she found out the patient knew all along that her partner wanted to leave her, and gave her the liver transplant to make her feel more guilty about leaving.
- In Skin Deep, when Cameron finds out the patient has had sex with her father, she (properly) reports it to social services despite House's vehement objections. To her astonishment, the patient denies it. When she tells the patient she must report it, the patient says it was all her idea and she makes a habit of sleeping with men who can help her career. She slept with her father so he wouldn't interfere with her career or life.
Despite her usually sweet personality, Cameron is shown to harshly judge those who do not meet her moral standards. For example, she tells a patient's husband he is a terrible person after he confides that a small part of him hopes his wife doesn't wake up, which would mean she didn't cheat on him. She can also be somewhat callous, such as when she tells Chase that "If only [he] was handicapped, all the good times [he] could have had with [his] dad." in third season episode Lines in the Sand. Not only that, but she began a "friends with benefits" relationship with Chase, only to callously break it off with him when he admitted that he'd fallen for her and that he wanted a serious relationship.
Cameron and Chase
In Hunting, Chase drops by just after Cameron experiments with the patient's ecstacy and she agressively throws him on the bed. It soon becomes obvious to her co-workers what happened and although Chase seems to be willing to continue, she seems to regret the whole incident.
However, by the next season, Cameron's lack of a social life leads her to suggest a "friends with benefits" arrangement with Chase, which he agrees to. They engage in dangerous sex in the sleep lab and a patient's bedroom. When Foreman becomes suspicous, Cameron "confesses" and Foreman figures that Cameron is jerking him around and drops the matter. However, House "accidentally" drops in on them while they are hot and heavy in a hospital storage closet. With the cat out of the bag, Cuddy warns Cameron that if she gets hurt, one of them will have to be fired. However, when Chase expresses an interest in having a real relationship, it's Cameron who backs off and breaks up with Chase.
However, Chase is not to be denied. For the rest of the third season, he creates I love you Tuesdays where he reminds Cameron each and every Tuesday how much he likes her. Cameron still isn't interested and blames Chase for breaking up their previous relationship by breaking the rule about not getting serious. However, when Chase is fired and Cameron resigns, Chase tells Cameron that although he still feels for her, the whole "Tuesdays" thing was a silly idea. He figures it's over when she turns down his request for a drink, but she's soon at his place.
In order to stay together, Cameron returns to Princeton-Plainsboro as senior attending physician in the emergency room, and Chase takes a job on the surgical staff. However, they go through a rough patch when it becomes clear that Cameron has issues allowing Chase a permanent place in her life. She finally relents to letting him have his own space in her apartment. It gets worse when Chase tries to take Cameron away for the weekend in order to propose. When Cameron learns what's up, she does everything she can to delay the trip because she's not sure she's ready to commit. Chase decides he's had enough, but Cameron reveals she knew he was about to propose and was just scared. Chase proposes to her at the hospital and she accepts.
However, that's not the end of it. Cameron reveals that she has kept a semen sample from her late husband. Chase believes her wanting to keep the sample shows that she's afraid the marriage won't work out. On the verge of cancelling the wedding, Chase points out that Cameron won't change her mind about the sample even if they have a perfect marriage with lots of kids. At that point, she agrees that Chase is right and agrees to destroy the sample. However, Chase soon relents when he realizes that Cameron only wants to keep the sample because it gives her an attachment to her late husband.
They marry at the end of the fifth season.