New Yorker and new doctor Zoe Hart accepts an offer from a stranger, Dr. Harley Wilkes, to work in his medical practice in Bluebell, Alabama. She arrives to find he has died and left half the practice to her in his will.
The "normal" suburban life for a group of close-knit housewives takes a dark turn when one of their closest friends mysteriously commits suicide. Now while trying to deal with their own hectic problems and romantic lives, each year brings on a new mystery and more dark and twisted events to come. Life behind closed doors is about to be revealed as suburban life takes a funny and dark turn. Written by
Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, and Eva Longoria are the only actresses to appear in every episode of the series. Marcia Cross appeared in nearly every episode, except for the seven that she missed, near the end of the third season (due to her maternity leave). See more »
Susan's last name is at first pronounced "Meyer" occasionally by all characters, before it eventually changes to "Mayer" for the second season onward. See more »
How could we have all forgotten about this?
We didn't exactly forget. It's just usually when the hostess dies, the party is off.
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The credits contain references to famous pieces of art, including Adam and Eve by Lucas Cranach the Elder, The Arnolfini Portrait by Jan van Eyck, American Gothic by Grant Wood, and Andy Warhol's Campbell's soup can. Also alluded to are the lesser known Couple Arguing and Romantic Couple by Robert Dale (drawn in a comic book style similar to that of Roy Liechtenstein) and a 1940s "Am I Proud!" poster by Dick Williams (showing a woman holding cans). See more »
"Desperate," Guilty and Loving Every Friggin' Minute Of It!
Some thirty years ago now, a fledgling writer and self-admitted 'desperate housewife' herself, one Susan Harris was sitting watching the gawd-awful writing and acting being perpetrated on some daytime sudser and said, "Well, hell! I can do this, and I can do it better!" And so she sat down and started work on what became one of the most ground-breaking series of its time, SOAP.
Fast-forward to 2004. Miraculously, and not a moment too soon, the can-do spirit and twisted, blackly comic sensibility that Susan Harris blended into her frothy concoction has seeped into the consciousness and the pen of one Mr. Marc Cherry, and television right now is all the better for it.
It was high time, in a slate of shows that range from the ones that take themselves all too seriously (THE WEST WING, ER and about any other medical or cop drama you can name), to the ones that have no shame at all (AMERICA'S FUNNIEST HOME VIDEOS, FEAR FACTOR and every 'reality show' going), that somebody took the complete, over-the-top ridiculousness of both day-and-night-time soaps and gave them a good, hard shake.
DESPERATE is not a sitcom, but nothing on television right now makes me laugh harder. It isn't a straight drama, but I find myself just as involved as if I were watching LOST or THE SHIELD. It's not some stiff, stodgy or saccharine, treacly morality play, but when it comes to having a sense of those "family values" that certain politicians are so fond of emphasizing, it carries in one episode more commentary about love, compassion and caring for one's fellow man than all the seasons of JOAN OF ARCADIA and "that show with Della Reese" combined.
Not that it's going to receive the Nobel Prize anytime soon. I would just as soon settle for seeing every member of the terrific cast win an Emmy every year this show runs, and sooner or later, I have no doubt that it will happen.
But besides bringing us a terrific show to look forward to on Sunday nights, (something that hasn't happened for me personally since the heyday of THE X-FILES), let us give thanks for something else that TV has been far too slow in acknowledging...the value of beautiful, brainy and talented actresses over 40.
For realizing that Teri Hatcher DESPERATELY needed a role that would prove she could do a helluva lot more than play yet another version of Lois Lane. That Felicity Huffman, one of our most under-appreciated talents, DESPERATELY needed the sustenance of a role like Lynette Scavo to sink her teeth into. That Marcia Cross DESPERATELY needed the kind of showcase for HER talents that the likes of Frances Conroy, CCH Pounder, Sharon Gless and other top notch actresses only get on cable, and that Bree Van De Kamp will prove once and for all what we always knew from MELROSE PLACE--this woman ROCKS!, and for giving Eva Longoria something that all actors as gorgeous as she have DESPERATELY needed forever...the chance to prove that being a treat for the eyes, does not automatically mean that your acting talent is about as deep as a kiddie wading pool.
Thank you, thank you, thank you...and thank you for making us all DESPERATE for more of the shady doings on the sunny side of the streets of Wisteria Lane.
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