A medium who doubles as a publicist called to say that Mary Alice Young, the dead woman whose spirit narrates Desperate Housewives, was available to talk up the second season. By seance. So I said sure. But as happens with Housewives, the dead can be mischievous...
"Sometimes we regard a hit series as tenderly as family... and then there are times you want to hit the TV set with a shovel. No, this is not Mary Alice. My name is Martha Huber. I was that nice woman who was killed off in season one for no better reason than I was also a blackmailing busybody. All those weeks, I never objected that Mary Alice got to do all the narrating, even though I was just as dead. But all anyone cared about was why she'd killed herself. Well, wasn't that cleared up by the end of season one? Mary Alice should do what placated ghosts do on Medium: Skedaddle. Or her house should be rented out to an exorcist.
"After all, stranger things happen on Wisteria Lane—I mean that new plot about the man imprisoned in the basement. A bit Gothic for my taste. Maybe Gabrielle's next gardener could be Boo Radley.
"Not that I'm rattling my chains or howling along with the living who say the new season is a letdown. I may hate Mary Alice, but I haven't lost my pleasure in watching those women do cruel, muddled, stupid things. There's always a moment to treasure. The other week, Bree Van De Kamp learned her stupid husband, Rex, went to his grave thinking she'd killed him. She was so furious, she all but buried him in a potter's field. For all I care,' she said, 'let him decompose with strangers.' I was in heaven. Which, by the way, I'm not."