Hugh Laurie (Ray Mickshaw/Fox)

Well, technically, House faked his death and then he and Wilson rode off into the sunset to spend on their motorcycles however much is left of Wilson’s life, but the effect was the same.

 Oh yeah – spoiler alert. Frankly, we blame Fox for spoiling it by, you know, airing it.

Fox noted that was the Hugh Laurie starrer’s biggest audience in three and a half months. This is what is known as damning with faint praise, which is what a network is left doing when a good TV series stays at the party too long.

 What a shame “House” didn’t bow out in 2010 — that year its season finale clocked more than 11 million viewers — which would put it on par with the so-long episodes of such shows as ABC’s “Desperate Housewives.”

 (Last season’s “House” finale had averaged 9.1 million viewers, which is hardly an improvement compared to Monday’s swansong.)

 Even better, had “House” sailed off into the sunset in May of 2009, we’d have written that nearly 13 million people came to say goodbye.

 Fox also noted Monday’s “House” closing was the night’s highest rated program among 18-34 year olds, and also tied for first with 18-49-year-old guys.

 Monday’s “House” finale averaged 2.9 percent of the country’s 18-49 year olds. To put that in perspective, Monday’s episode of “Dancing with the Stars” attracted 2.8 percent of  the country’s 18-49 year olds.

 Three years ago, the “House” season finale attracted nearly 5 percent of the country’s 18-49 year olds.