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‘Housewives’ fans have reason to be wary

It’s been four years since Mary Alice/Angela Young/Forrest first pointed that revolver at her temple, and here we sit three weddings, one and a half pregnancies, and a healthy handful of murders later. Season 3 was largely regarded as something of a return to form for the cast and writers; it lacked the sparkle of the first season, but we were at least spared the bizarre nun-fighting and wanderi
/ Source: msnbc.com contributor

It’s been four years since Mary Alice/Angela Young/Forrest first pointed that revolver at her temple, and here we sit three weddings, one and a half pregnancies, and a healthy handful of murders later.

Season 3 was largely regarded as something of a return to form for the cast and writers; it lacked the sparkle of the first season, but we were at least spared the bizarre nun-fighting and wandering spleens of season 2. Fans were largely thrilled with midseason’s “Bang,” which led to some good old fashioned from-the-couch screeching:  “She shot her!  Roseanne’s sister shot Alex from ‘Saved By the Bell: The College Years’ in the freakin’ chest!”

A rundown of the storylines we’re looking forward to this season on The Lane of Blackmail and Mayhem:

Edie’s big afterlife adventure, we think

Much has been made amongst DH fans concerning Season 3 Edie’s downward slide from awesome Susan slams to alarming “I need a man! Full-time!” clinginess. It culminated in a post-Carlos-dump act of desperation, with a suicide note, a scarf flung over a rafter and a shot of limp, not particularly well-manicured feet in the season finale.

What does this mean? If we know Marc Cherry, probably not what it seems. That scarf seemed awfully flimsy, and this is the same show, recall, which last season asked us to believe that Orson Hodge fell five stories for about 10 minutes and was then able to engage in a bathroom rumble with Julia Sugarbaker (Dixie Carter, playing his murderous mother) later in the evening.

Then again, those feet sure were still.

Gabrielle, Carlos, and the mayor

Last season ended with the marriage of Gabrielle to Victor Lang and his truly amazing closets, complete with disgustingly dismissive conversation about Gabby’s perceived ability to bring in “the Latino vote” in a future gubernatorial race, a chat Gabby overheard. ABC’s preview showed Gabrielle planning to run away with Carlos — still wearing her wedding dress. Good to hear Gabby’s taking those matrimonial vows as seriously as ever.

Guess who’s hosting a fabulous dinner party

Much as we’d like to see how Cherry and Co. would deliver a believable lesbian character, as a consolation prize we’re getting a male gay couple from Chicago. Word is they’re toting a dog named Mr. Barkley. I am in full support of a Mr. Barkley spinoff.

New girl in town, kind of

We all know how wonderfully the Season 2 insertion of the Applewhites and their locked basement went down, so … meet the Mayfairs! And their secrets! Katherine (Dana Delany) used to live on Wisteria Lane before Gabrielle, Lynette, and Bree moved in, and she’s come trotting back with a new husband and suspiciously forgetful daughter in tow. The weary sighs go forth from an exhausted nation.

Bree’s bundle of pillow

With the new counterpoint of Katherine, there are signs that we shall see the return of Bree, not five-episode alcoholic Bree or Bree.2, who shrugged off the fact that she just escaped the matrimonial clutches of her husband’s murderer and went on to marry the next shifty person she saw. The “pillow reveal” of the season finale promises a return to the tension where Bree is best: Keeping up appearances. She’s going to raise her teenage daughter’s illegitimate grandchild, or kill us all with lemon squares trying.

Sometimes evil Andrew rides again

Sometimes Andrew is so evil he cheerfully informs a minister, in a church, just how evil he is. And sometimes he beamingly and responsibly carries out the trash in his job at Tom and Lynette’s pizzeria. Which Andrew will we see this season? Probably the one most convenient to the writers.

Susan and Mike’s angsty angst

We are eagerly awaiting to see how the writers avoid the “they did it/I do” paths to the shark tank. That wedding in the woods was a little too non-disastrous for the likes of Susan. Perhaps she took last season’s much-needed smackdown from her walk in the woods with everybody’s gym teacher in the form of a park ranger to heart and will focus on eliminating drama from her life. And maybe Mike will go an entire weekend without being suspected of murder.

Say it with me now: HA.

Lynette’s mommy issues

Man, Lynette’s contentious relationship with her alcoholic, formerly abusive mother speaks entire encyclopedias about her utter failure to raise children who don’t engage in petty theft and jump into swimming pools during wakes. Her contention with Tom over the issue of her mother living with the family while Lynette battles chemo, not to mention the increasingly grating evilness of Tom’s daughter Kayla, doesn’t seem bode well for the marriage. Get your Scavo pizza while you can.

Wait a minute: Oh yeah, Paul Young, still in prison, framed for the non-murder of Felicia. Apparently, he’s still orange jumpsuiting it somewhere. Then there’s Zach, still sporting the crazy, only now powered by Gates-style cash.

Remember when we learned that Zach is Mike’s son? Remember how this was a big huge non-negotiable issue for Susan, who could never marry Mike as long as the table-hurling Zach was around? Remember that Orson hit-and-ran Mike? Are we just … all good on that now? And remember how Edie gave her son a rescued puppy named Fenway, knowing full well that the kid’s father was allergic to dogs? Please — Fenway had true screen presence. We fret nights about Fenway. Perhaps he can have a recurring guest role on Mr. Barkley’s show.

We shall see.

Mary Beth Ellis runs BlondeChampagne.com from the Washington, D.C. area and would totally marry the mayor for his closets.