FOX (Tuesdays, 9 p.m. ET)
BY TOM GLIATTO
MTV2 (Fridays, 9:30 p.m. ET)
Stardust: The Bette Davis Story
TCM (May 3, 8 p.m. ET)
Texas Ranch House
PBS (May 1-4, 8 p.m. ET)
Less Than Perfect
ABC (Tuesdays, 9:30 p.m. ET)
Perfect is one of those empty but easy-to-watch series that comes in under the radar—more than once, even—and then stays that way. It continues to exist, having returned from hiatus for an abbreviated fourth season with Sara Rue as a low-level newscast worker. Eventually it'll expire with a barely noticed sonic blip.
>Nashville Star (USA, May 2, 10 p.m. ET) Finale of the country-singing competition, with Big & Rich guest judging. Good luck, y'all.
Saturday Night Live (NBC, April 29, 11:30 p.m. ET) This should be genius: a special show dedicated to all those TV Funhouse cartoon shorts. The Ambiguously Gay Duo host.
Dynasty Reunion: Catfights & Caviar (CBS, May 2, 10 p.m. ET) Joan Collins, Linda Evans and John Forsythe reminisce about that big-shouldered, trash-fabulous hit from the '80s.
Ghost Whisperer (CBS, May 5, 8 p.m. ET) Season one wrap-up of Jennifer Love Hewitt's star vehicle about a sweetly pretty psychic. It's been renewed for a second season.
Thief (FX, May 2, 10 p.m. ET) Conclusion of the six-episode series starring Andre Braugher as a master thief in a mess.
Jeanne Tripplehorn, 42, is currently starring in her first major TV project, HBO's controversial Big Love, in which she plays one of three wives of a Salt Lake City polygamist (Bill Paxton).
COULD YOU EVER IMAGINE POLYGAMY INVOLVING ONE WIFE AND THREE HUSBANDS?
It would not be fun for a woman, especially if she's doing the housework and child care. And I can't imagine a man who could take on that role.
WHAT'S THE DIVISION OF LABOR IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD?
It's pretty even. My husband [actor Leland Orser] is very comfortable cooking and helping with the dishes. He's the one who takes our son [August, 3] to preschool.
IS IT ONE BIG HAPPY FAMILY ON THE SET?
We get along really, really well. We are all very different. Bill is just one of these incredibly positive people. And Chloë Sevigny is as cool as it gets. I mean in the old sense of the word. Cool, like a cat.
WHAT'S BIG LOVE'S FUTURE?
We've got six episodes to go [this season]. The show is going to go to places you can't imagine.
>Last May Desperate Housewives was building to its first-season finale, and I floated through the days in the happiness of anticipation. What a show, what a cliffhanger, what a comeback role for Teri Hatcher
. Now a year has gone, and the only desperate housewife I've been interested in lately has been over on FOX: That would be Jean Smart, playing a breakdown-prone First Lady with a chin-wobbling Nixonian freak of a husband on 24. Housewives's second season didn't start badly at all—the dialogue has a nice, consistent comedic sheen— but lately the episodes have such a loose, soap-opera flaccidness, I don't really care what ends get tied up at the May 21 cliffhanger. With the mystery from season one resolved, why didn't creator Marc Cherry repeat the formula and have this entire second season revolve around one fresh scandal, crisis or death? (It works for 24.) Instead the season feels atomized into dopey moments—Eva Longoria
wrestling a nun possibly being the dopiest. The housewives no longer seem so much desperate as ridiculous.