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DVD Review: Desperate Housewives – The Complete Eighth and Final Season

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Having warped my own fragile little mind as a youngster by viewing Monty Python’s Flying Circus, I tend to occasionally slip into a similarly-surreal world of strange skits. When I see a terrible television show run entirely too long on any network (even UPN!), I can’t help but envision a take on the timeless “Upper Class Twit of the Year” sketch, wherein something resembling the Olympics ignores all things athletic-like and focuses instead on television shows competing against each other in order to jump over a shark. Were such an event to be constructed and televised, Marc Cherry’s Desperate Housewives would surely be a hot item to lay even money on.

It began as a parody of women who dwell within the confines of upper middle class suburbia. In a sense, it remained a parody throughout, though it lost virtually all of its credibility after the first season alone, wherein the series began to take itself far too seriously, incorporating dramatic and mystery elements it could have easily toned down. And yet, somehow the series managed to run for a full eight years, insulting the intelligence of its viewers annually with varied absurd premises, including an epic spin down the toilet bowl of life by jumping ahead five years between two seasons (the Alias effect, as some like to call it).

By the time the seventh season aired in 2010, however, more than half of the 23.69 million viewers that had originally tuned in at the start of the show in 2004 had switched over to something much more interesting (though probably not), and — ironically enough, Desperate Housewives became desperate to keep itself-a-goin’. As such, Desperate Housewives: The Complete Eighth and Final Season focused primarily on the cover-up of the accidental death of one of the character’s evil stepfather. Yeah. Big yawn there, eh? The regular leads (Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, Marcia Cross, Eva Longoria, et al) are still here, though so many more lead characters had been added and changed by this point that it made focusing on the original stars a lot like asking a kid with ADHD to read an eye chart after smoking crack.

But that’s just my opinion, folks — though many more felt the same towards the show, and, thankfully, Desperate Housewives left this world with a whimper. Now, however, that whimper can be seen and heard for the forlorn act it really was on DVD (not Blu-ray). Though I can’t really see a reason to bother, personally. The five-disc set presents all 23 episodes in anamorphic 1.78:1 widescreen with 5.1 Dolby Digital sound and subtitles in English (SDH), Spanish, and French. Special features include a brief featurette, an audio commentary on the series finale by Mr. Cherry himself, and the obligatory coupling of deleted scenes and bloopers.

Yes, it was a bad show. Sure, I tortured myself by watching it every now and again, just to see how much worse it became over time. But, in keeping up with the sage advice those fellows that formed Monty Python dispensed upon the world, one must always look on the bright side of life. In this case, we must celebrate: because Desperate Housewives is finally over. Hallelujah.

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About Luigi Bastardo

Luigi Bastardo is the disgruntled alter-ego of a thirtysomething lad from Northern California who has watched so many weird movies since the tender age of 3 that a conventional life is out of the question. He currently lives in Chico, CA with four cats named Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Margaret. Seriously.