Quickie recap: Bree has the hots for her new handyman, which leads to her getting distracted and running over Juanita (fresh off admitting to Gaby that Andrew ran over Juanita the first). This leads to Bree firing the guy, then hiring him back after an interesting conversation about sex with Mrs. McClusky (eww). This also leads to Gaby first thinking Juanita was the result of an affair, then Carlos having to tell her the truth. Over in the Scavo home, Tom is suffering from post-partum (really!), which leads him to connect with Lynette's old college friend, only it turns out that they've "connected" before. Also, Susan's sexy side-job leads to a situation with Mike, and, oh yeah, Paul Young has a wife!
OK, that's a whole lot going on, and that packed hour of soap-opera insanity is really what keeps me watching "Desperate Housewives" week-in and week-out. Still, I think some of the insanity in this particular episode could have gone in a different direction and things would have worked out better. Three particular points stand out for me.
- We've been down this road with Tom before, though this time the stakes are amped up because Lynette and Renee have a pre-existing relationship, unlike Lynette and Nora. The Scavos have generally lagged behind the other families of Wisteria Lane when it came to soap opera story lines, but to rehash one of the only decent ones they had seems... well, desperate.
- I get why Susan THINKS she has to hide her new side job from Mike, and I even get why the writers are having her do it (because duplicity is always more interesting than honest on a soap), but too me it just doesn't fit the characters. I feel like Mike's the kind of guy who would be totally fine with what Susan is doing, especially given the good reason she's doing it.
- I'm sure we haven't seen the last of the fallout from the Juanita situation, but I wish they'd played up the drama of Gaby finding out a little more. Sure, sometimes muted moments can be just as good as explosive ones, but this was the kind of thing that seemed to call for explosive (like Katherine finding out about the death of her daughter in the Season 4 finale).
All that said, the addition of a reluctant wife for Paul Young is genius. I loved her general fear of being around him, and his overall creepiness when dealing with the whole thing. Paul is a much better character when being slimy/scary, and I was worried based on the season premiere that that aspect to his character might have been put on the backburner. But it was right back this week, and it just felt right.
For more coverage of the 2010-11 television season, visit the AdamReisinger.com TV Reviews home page.