DVD Review Desperate Housewives – The Complete Second Season
By Patrick Luce Aug 27, 2006, 19:52 GMT
In its first season, the show reveals the mystery of why Mary Alice took her own life and the quest by a mysterious "plumber" named Mike Delfino (James Denton) to find out the fate of his former lover, drug addict Dierdre. By the end of the season, the show resolves the mystery with the revelation that 15 years ago, when Mary Alice\'s name was Angela Forrest, she buys the heroin-addicted ...more
With Desperate Housewives - The Complete Second Season, the women of Wisteria Lane return for another season of laughs, love, mystery, murder, and suburban living.
The second season sees a return to the dysfunctional lives of the show’s main characters Susan Mayer (Teri Hatcher), Lynette Scavo (Felicity Huffman), Bree Van De Kamp (Marcia Cross), Edie Britt (Nicollette Sheridan), and Gabrielle Solis (Eva Longoria) – along with their husbands, neighbors, and various love interests. The season also sees the series continuing its quirky blend of Pickett Fences mixed with a little Twin Peaks and a touch of The Stepford Wives.
While the second season was criticized for not living up to the show’s debut, and losing some of its sharper elements, season two does deliver great laughs, more details on some of the side characters that were introduced in the first season, and a couple of new mysteries and murders for our housewives to come across. It also finishes up some of the storylines introduced in season one while leaving the audience waiting for the debut of Season Three.
Although the housewives solved the mystery of Mary Alice Young (Brenda Strong who also narrates the series), this season sees the mystery of Betty Applewhite (Alfre Woodard) and her two sons; a continuation of the Mike Delfino (James Denton) story; more developments in Bree’s life following the death of her husband; the baby crisis of Gabrielle and her husband Carlos (Ricardo Chavira); and Lynette Scavo adjusting to life as a working mom.
The season also sees some big laughs with the love triangle of Susan, Edie, and Susan’s ex-husband Karl Mayer (Richard Burgi). Burgi’s performance was one of the funniest of the entire season, and his new found love interest in Edie added fuel to the rivalry that was established in the first season (not to mention Edie gets even for Susan burning down her house in Season One). Season two also features the return of everyone’s favorite nosy neighbor Felicia Tilman (Harriet Sansom Harris). Season Two also benefits from guest appearances from Bob Newhart and Carol Burnett.
*Spoiler warning – the following are brief descriptions of the season’s episodes, and contain spoilers. Readers may want to skip this part of the review.
Disc One episode 1: “Next” – Sees the season kick off with Mike arriving home to find Susan being held at gunpoint by Zach (Cody Kasch), and Wisteria Lane’s newest neighbor Betty Applewhite has a secret in the basement. Episode 2: “You Could Drive A Person Crazy” – Susan is less than pleased when she finds out who Edie’s new boyfriend is, and Lynette hatches a plan to motivate Tom to start cleaning the house. Episode 3: “You’ll Never Get Away From Me” – Bree insists on taking a polygraph test to prove she didn’t kill Rex, but is shocked when she discovers her feelings for George (who just happened to be the one who did kill Rex). Episode 4: “My Heart Belongs to Daddy” – Lynette feels guilty when she learns that Parker has invented an imaginary friend. Susan agrees to help Mike find Zach, but isn’t too sure she really wants him found. Episode 5: “They Asked Me Why I Believed In You” – Bree reburies Rex, and Gabrielle’s lawyer seems interested in more than getting Carlos out of jail.
Disc Two episode 6: “I Wish I Could Forget You” – Bree’s relationship with George hits a slight snag when he starts making her break out in hives, and Paul Young returns to Wisteria Lane. Episode 7: “Color and Light” – With her relationship with Mike seemingly over, Susan finds herself in bed with Karl (I am sure psycho Edie won’t mind). Episode 8: “The Sun Won’t Set” – The residents of Wisteria Lane hold a neighborhood watch meeting, and Betty Applewhite has to figure out how to get her missing son back. Episode 9: “That’s Good, That’s Bad” – Lynette is fed up with Nina’s scathing critiques at the office. Carlos gets early parole, but Gabrielle isn’t too happy with the nun that is “helping” him. Episode 10: “Coming Home” – Susan makes an effort to get to know her real father. Gabrielle schemes to get rid of Sister Mary. Andrew (Shawn Pyfrom) gets the upper hand on his mom Bree.
Disc Three episode 11: “One More Kiss” – Lynette gets jealous when Gabrielle plants a big kiss on Tom. Bree has to deal with Andrew’s continued bad behavior. Episode 12: “We’re Gonna Be All Right” – After a really bad blind date, Susan meets Dr. Right. Tom is alarmed when the Scavo kids all come down with chicken pox. Episode 13: “There’s Something About A War” – Gabrielle maneuvers to get rid of Sister Mary. Tom decides it is time to go back to work. Bree learns some truth about the Applewhite family. Episode 14: “Silly People” – Bree learns why one of her neighbors always hosts the perfect dinners. Susan decides to get married so she can have an operation, but the choices aren’t that great. Episode 15: “Thank You So Much” – Karl and Susan hunt for her original wedding ring so they can tie the knot again, but don’t tell Edie because she thinks she is going to marry Karl.
Disc Four episode 16: “There Is No Other Way” – Zach agrees to meet his grandfather. Tom deals with the stress of having his wife for a boss. Bree joins AA – even though she clearly doesn’t have a problem. Episode 17: “Could I Leave You?” – Gabrielle and Carlos learn the secret to adopting a baby – cash. Lynette deals with an employee who believes in breast feeding her son at the office even if the kid is five years old. Episode 18: “Everyone Says Don’t” – Bree gets a new sponsor. Lynette has to testify at Andrew’s deposition. Edie learns that Karl and Susan are “married” but agrees to forgive them (for a price). Episode 19: “Don’t Look At Me” – Felicia torments Paul Young. Susan faces her feelings for Karl – who threatens to marry Edie if Susan won’t admit she loves him. Episode 20: “It Wasn’t Meant To Happen” – Gabby finds a way to get her adopted baby’s birth father to give up the rights. Edie and Susan bond after Karl leaves her for another woman (who just happens to be Susan).
Disc Five episode 21: “I Know Things Now” – Tom is fired for punching the boss. Susan decides to tell Edie about the affair before a detective does. Edie gets a little revenge on Susan thanks to a can of gas and Susan’s unlocked garage. Episode 22: “No One Is Alone” – Susan suspects Edie burned down her house and schemes a way to get a confession (which leads to a cat fight Dynasty style). Lynette follows Tom to Atlantic City to find out the “truth.” Episode 23: “Remember (Part One)” – Lynette learns the truth about Tom. Zach goes to some extremes with his grandfather. Susan finds herself in a new triangle with Mike and Karl. Episode 24: “Remember (Part Two)” – Bree attempts to leave the nuthouse. Susan plans to pop the question to Mike, but he gets popped in a hit and run first.
Disc Six comes loaded with special features that fan of the show will really love. “Marc and Mom” features an interview with the series’ creator Marc Cherry and his mother about how much of his life is in the show. “Directing Desperate Housewives” takes you through a complete episode of the show from concept to filming. “Desperate Role Models” is a look at television moms from the past and present – including Shirley Jones, Jane Wyatt, Patricia Richardson, Marion Ross, and Joanna Kerns. “Cherry-Picked” features some of the creator’s favorite scenes.
“Unaired Story Lines” features complete storylines with Hatcher and Huffman that never made it into the show – which include more scenes with Leslie Ann Warren (as Susan’s mother) and Newhart (her mother’s fiancé). “Fashion and Couture” is a look with the show’s costume designer Cate Adair – who shows how the wives get their looks. “Juicy Bits” the wives share some of the show’s juicy moments. “Desperate Housewives Poker” is a “mini-activity” from the game version of the show.
Although some viewers felt the season lacked the great writing that was established in the first season, I really enjoyed the show. The series never got dull (which can easily happen when watching a show one episode after the other), and I enjoyed the added comedy that some of the side characters (such as Karl and Lynette’s boss Ed Ferrara) brought to the series.
The show did lose some of the edginess that the first season maintained, but left you waiting to see what Season Three has in store for the wives. I would recommend the set to fans of the show or anyone who watched it when it aired in the season. There are enough extras to make the set worth buying. If you have never seen the show, I would recommend starting with season one, but the series’ recap at the beginning of every episode makes sure you have enough information to enjoy the show.