James Evan Wilson was born in New Jersey to a relatively typical, middle-class Jewish family and was the oldest of three boys. His parents had strict rules and high expectations for their boys and Wilson met them with loyal determination to please. It was clear from an early age that he would make good use of his natural gifts of focused intelligence and easy charm. It was little surprise to anyone when he set his eyes on a medical career, following the strong urging of his father (a dentist) and having shown an interest in the science along with the makings of an excellent bedside manner. A spotless history of good grades and an impressive collection of extracurricular school activities made him a natural candidate for acceptance to medical school.
After graduating from McGill University in Canada, Wilson returned to his home state of New Jersey to continue his career. It was also about this time that personal tragedy hit the Wilson family. Daniel, the youngest of Wilson’s three brothers, left abruptly after a bout of family drama and has not been heard from since. There is no way of knowing where he is, let alone if he is still alive. Wilson has taken on a personal responsibility in the matter, blaming himself for not being there when his family needed him.
This was only part of his considerably unstable personal life. A professional success as his career advanced, Wilson could never say the same for the rest of his life. Even becoming Head of the Department of Oncology at Princeton-Plainsboro at such an early age was tainted by the two failed marriages in its wake and a third one feeling the strain. Infidelity and negligence characterized all his domestic attempts, rarely there for any of his wives. Although some of this could be explained by a demanding schedule, Wilson was often guilty of a wandering eye and wandering hands. This plus a tendency to devote too much time and attention to a rather needy and unpleasant best friend, Dr. Gregory House, eventually lead to divorce and large alimony payments. As recently as 2005, his third marriage followed the outline for disaster when his wife confessed to cheating on him and he found himself hiring a lawyer once again.
At that point he found himself living with aforementioned best friend, House, for a time being. A fellow doctor at Princeton-Plainsboro, House is a major factor in Wilson’s life. Many of the events and situations of Wilson’s general existence these days have come to revolve around or include the diagnostician. With three divorces, no children, and no current relationships, House has become the most important figure in Wilson’s life. This often proves to be an unhealthy arrangement but not one that appears to be changing anytime soon.
After living with House, Wilson moved out and into the apartment of a terminal cancer patient, Grace, with whom he had a short affair. Soon enough, in a brief window of relief from her illness, she decided to go to Florence, once again leaving Wilson without a place to live. Since then, he has taken up living in a hotel instead of finding a place of his own.
It could be said that Wilson’s life has taken a bit of a downward spiral in the last few years. This came to a peak lately when House pissed off a patient in the clinic who turned out to be a very stubborn detective, bent on bringing House down on narcotic charges. Wilson was inevitably swept up in House’s affairs, per usual, but this time to an intolerable degree. Detective Tritter came to learn and inform Wilson that House had been forging Vicodin prescriptions in his name on his prescription pad. Although the difference in handwriting was clear, Wilson stood by House, lying to the cop in order to protect his friend. This only made the situation worse. Tritter put increasing pressure on Wilson to turn House in. His car was seized, his bank account frozen, and his prescribing license taken away so that he was ultimately forced to close down his practice. House’s careless dismissal of all these things, plus becoming increasingly dangerous to the people around him, eventually lead Wilson to Tritter with a deal. He would testify against House if House was given the option of going to rehab instead of jail. It’s safe to say he wasn’t counting on House stubbornly refusing the deal and opting for jail, completely negating Wilson’s attempt to intervene for his own good.
As a result of his actions, Wilson’s friendship with House suffered a great deal until the situation came to a conclusion. After an overdose and brief trial, the affairs were settled and the wreckage of their friendship swept up with tentative apologies. It appears to be on the mend and Wilson still remains dangerously tangled in his best friend’s affairs.