Normally when channel 7 or 9 tells me that a show is “the number one show in the United States” I usually steer clear. That’s because what the station is really saying is “we’ve bought this tv show for a lot of money and we have a lot riding on this so you better watch it suckers!”. It also means that they are going to do a lot of cross promotions with it (i.e. competitions) and throw a tonne of ads in every 5 minutes. It also takes away that “I discovered this really cool show all by myself and everyone should watch it” thing that people like to use as conversational pieces. The tv station spends about a month hyping the show and by the time it actually starts you are already bored with it so that the ratings peak on the first night. Everyone expects that the show will change their lives and are unimpressed when they finally see it. Thus was the case with Desperate Housewives.
After the show aired a lot of people voiced their dissent with it. I watched the first episode expecting it to be horrible but was pleasantly surprised to find that I was laughing at it’s dark humour. When you have Lois from Lois and Clark and Kimberley from Melrose Place you don’t expect great acting, but because the writing is so good they actually don’t need to be Cate Blanchett. They work well in the roles because they understand comic timing and melodrama.
I don’t care much for the “I killed Laura Palmer” storyline because I am too busy enjoying the Martha Stewart relationship issues and the naked falling in the bush embarassments. I’ve also grown fond of the bit on the side story since the mother-in-law turned up. I have spent a bit time though wondering where the brother of the twins has gone because there were three boys in the first couple of episodes. Maybe he is called “Dana” and is in the box. 🙂
Time magazine recently wrote an article about how a large amount of popular tv shows are actually being written by gay men. Six Feet Under, Sex and the City, Desperate Housewives and Nip/Tuck offer up identifable characters that are three dimensional with plenty of secrets. (I wish I could add Wonderfalls to the list of popular tv shows – it got canned before it got a true following). Does this mean if gay men start getting married we won’t get good television anymore? If that is the case I say no to gay marriage! 🙂
So, if you were put off by channel 7’s advertising of Desperate Housewives, you shouldn’t be because it’s pretty funny in a subtle way. If you need canned laughs to understand a joke then don’t watch this show. If you’ve watched it and didn’t like it, it’s a free world. You can just fuck off and watch Home and Away.