In the season 3 premiere of ''Desperate Housewives,'' the series tries to get back to the basics: infidelity, murders, comas, and disastrous parties

By Lindsay Soll
Updated September 25, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

Desperate Housewives

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”Desperate Housewives”: The season 3 reboot

Well, the folks at ABC promised that the show that lost most of our attention last season was going to have better story lines and more scenes bringing the women together this time around. Judging by the third season premiere, I would say they were right — sorta.

We learned that since we left Wisteria Lane, Bree has fallen head over heels for Orson, Susan’s ”dentist friend”; Gabrielle is divorcing Carlos for doing pretty much the same thing she did to him, cheating (although there wasn’t a baby involved when she did it); Lynette is becoming acquainted with Tom’s ”mistake” (a.k.a. Kayla, his out-of-wedlock daughter) and her crazy mother, Nora; and Susan is spending all her time at the hospital waiting for Mike to wake up from a coma.

For me, the standout performer in this episode was Eva Longoria (and it’s about time, right?). Between her hilarious scenes with surrogate Xiao Mei — as when she retorts, ”Tell it to my Chinese friend, Sue Me!” — and her cackle when Bree tells her she’s planning to marry Orson without ever having had sex with him, Eva definitely looks like the one to watch this season.

I was also glad to see Susan a little more toned down and less accident-prone than usual. Her scenes with Mike in the hospital were actually touching, and I even found myself wishing he’d wake up, too (although, to be fair, her new hospital friend, Ian, played by Dougray Scott, is just as easy on the eyes as James Denton). I wonder if Susan will remain faithful to Mike. Knowing her and knowing the show, I guess no.

One guest star I was surprised to see was Laurie Metcalfe. I don’t think I’ve noticed her on anything since her days on Roseanne. She did a brilliant job of playing the classic TV nosy neighbor, and after barging in on the engagement party, her character is most definitely on Orson’s s— list (or should I say hit list?) now.

Which leads me to the newest mystery to find its way to Wisteria Lane: Orson Hodge. Is anyone else as confused as I am as to why he ran Mike over in the season finale? I’m really eager to see how the writers are going to connect the two guys. (It had something to do with prison dentistry, right?) Also, who the heck was the woman Orson visited in the mental institution that Bree admitted herself to? Furthermore — in an unrelated matter — where was Bree’s daughter, Danielle, during her engagement party? (After all, Bree did rescue her from the clutches of the murderous Matthew Applewhite in last season’s finale.)

What do you guys think? Will all of Orson’s loose ends ever get tied up? Will Gabrielle go through with the divorce to Carlos? How long will Nora keep meddling in Tom and Lynette’s marriage? And do Republicans really not do what Bree told Orson she didn’t do?

Episode Recaps

Desperate Housewives

Eva Longoria Parker, Teri Hatcher, Marcia Cross, and Felicity Huffman star in the soap set on the dangerous Wisteria Lane

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