Desperate Housewives: Bob D'Amico
Annie Barrett
December 11, 2004 AT 05:00 AM EST

”Desperate Housewives”: Fashion-show flashing

Well, it happened. Someone on this show finally said the word ”housewife.” Granted, it was John the gardener’s friend, a character we’ll probably never see again, but he definitely said it. We’ve heard ”desperate” plenty of times, but never the h-word.

Which got me thinking: None of the women on this show seems very desperate in this episode. There’s Susan, who brazenly gives dirty rotten cheater Gabrielle a piece of her mind. Lynette, who’s rebounding nicely from her Ritalin jones, methodically sets out to score some high-grade nanny (Lucy from The Practice!) in the style of slimeball employee-stealing corporations. She rocks. After Bree’s husband belittles their marriage in front of a golfing buddy, Bree puts him in his place by splashing their son’s urine sample all over him. I’m beginning to question our dear show’s title.

If this trend continues, they could always change the name to Dimwit Husbands. We have Paul Young, who opens his front door while holding a bag of bloody murder clothes and buries Mrs. Huber in broad daylight. Then there’s Rex, who’s just . . . well, Rex. Does he shout all of his lines? Don’t get me wrong; he’s hilarious. But still. The shouting. Tom still doesn’t get where wife Lynette’s coming from, and while emceeing the fashion show, he announced that Edie’s skankified ”audience-friendly” dress would work well at a christening. Carlos still doesn’t get that his gardener’s ”always a giver” when it comes to his wife. Oh, and Carlos got himself into something illegal, as evidenced by his end-of-the-episode handcuffing scene, which made Gabrielle pretend to cry for the second show in a row.

Gabrielle’s tears will likely have little effect on Susan, who sees right through Gabrielle’s explanation that her foot made its way into John’s crotch because ”he was helping me adjust the seam in my stocking.” (Um, with what? His hands were on the table.) Susan hates infidelity even more than Mike Delfino hates wearing shirts, so she is not happy and not giving in. Good luck, Susan. I want Gabrielle to grow a heart more than anyone, because right now she seems robotic and childish and I just don’t like her.

In other big news, Zach escapes from minimum-security troubled-teen lockup, Andrew turns to the reefer to cope with his status as a possible murderer, and police lift an old child-size chest full of adult female chopped-up body parts from a lake. Ooh, a lake. The clues to where these people live just keep coming. Naturally, I’m confused. The person buried in the chest was supposed to be Dana, of ”Dana” baby-blanket fame. So who’s the woman in the hundreds of photos in the police station?

Plenty of things about tonight’s episode make little sense. Like Andrew and his parents assuming he’ll get a swimming scholarship. Did anyone watch that race? The swimmers were just creeping along. It looked more like a practice. And FYI, that condescending little man in front of Bree and Rex at the swim meet appears out of nowhere. He isn’t seated when the race begins. Seriously. This is important.

I would talk about Mike Delfino, but he never shows up in this episode. That’s confusing in itself. After he and Susan had that steamy groping session, shouldn’t he be around? She’d definitely make him go to the fashion show to see her in all her angelic, white, clumsy glory. I’m sorry, but the ”Teri Hatcher as physical comedian” theme is getting a bit predictable, as are her repeated moments of accidental semi-indecent exposure. I dug the catfight between poor, unlucky Susan and John’s misled mom, but the strained runway scene at the end was a bit much. Yes, we know Teri Hatcher is rail-thin. You can stop now. It’s kind of gross.

While on the topic of gross, what’s going on with Julie and Zach? After exchanging a few letters, they’re suddenly snuggling up on her bedroom floor. Zach says he thinks he killed his baby sister and then immediately kisses Julie. What? Julie’s so into it, too. Especially creepy is the really intense look Zach gives Julie after she brings him some food in her room. What’s he thinking? I can’t believe you thought I’d be hungry. You’re the only one who understands me! I love you, even though I might kill you too. Or something.

Finally, there’s Bree. How weird is it when she apparently opens Andrew’s swimming locker with his school locker combination? According to Bree’s typed and laminated ”Numbers of Relevance” list, the swim locker’s combo is 85943, which wouldn’t work on any spinning-dial lock I’ve ever seen. (Again, this is important. I can’t say why.) The laminated list has to be the best Bree prop yet, closely followed by her All Tupperware, All the Time cabinet and that plant that actually looked like a pot leaf that she waves around while arranging flowers and talking to school officials about her pothead son. I can just see Bree typing ”Numbers of Relevance” with a satisfied head tilt.

What do you think? Will Carlos learn about Gabrielle’s cheating all the way from the slammer? Where was Mike? And whose bones are in that chest?

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