This week’s episode of Desperate Housewives, was the much talked about, heavily promoted Supermarket Hostage episode. And I’ll be damned if it didn’t deliver. It seems the last few weeks of great episodes reached its peak with this, the season’s best episode of Desperate Housewives thus far. This greatness is mostly because of Laurie Metcalf as crazy Carolyn Bigsby, the one woman whose buttons were pushed over the edge, by hearing about her husband’s infidelity. She was so pushed over the edge, in fact, that one of the Wisteria Lane Dwellers didn’t make it out of the Market alive! But who was it? Find out after the jump.It’s Friday and Carolyn Bigsby’s planned ordinary day has quickly turned to shit. She was hoping to make a strudel for her husband Harvey, and some other domestic chores, none of which seem very important to us except for the fact that she mailed a letter. This could also turn out to be part of her mundane list of chores, but methinks someone might be getting a letter from Aunt Jackie shortly. Her day took a serious downward turn when someone (all we see is a hand holding a basket of flowers) told Carolyn something she wasn’t supposed to hear. So now, Carolyn is going a little nutso in her car. Debbie Salt! Debbie Salt! Debbie Salt! Carolyn heads into the Grocery store Harv owns to have a little chat. And like any self-respecting Republican she has her Beretta in her handbag for good measure. Carolyn kindly tells Harv that if he loves Monique so much, than she wants him to be with her. Harv explains that Monique is dead, but Carolyn already knew that. Oh… she was… she was making a… I get it… Carolyn pulls out her gun and starts shooting. Harv runs into his office to hide. In a moment of realization Carolyn decides that she’s going to seize the moment and screams to the cowering grocery store patrons: “Nobody goes anywhere!”
It’s now Thursday night and I’m already irritated by this gimmick. Damn you Quentin Tarantino! It seems that although Mary Alice is super duper annoying, Lynette is still dreaming of her and not categorizing this as a nightmare. The Mary Alice-mare was a replay of the last time that Lynette had seen Mary Alice pre-brain splatter. It was the day that Mary Alice had discovered that blackmail letter from Mrs. Huber that got all these hijinks on Wisteria Lane started three years ago. Lynette knew that something was wrong with Mary Alice, but there was a leak in her grocery bag, so she couldn’t stop to see what the deal was. She’s been blaming herself for Mary Alice’s death ever since. Well, now I’m blaming you too, Lynette. If you could’ve just put down the broken jar of pickles NONE of us would have to listen to Mary Alice’s goddamn voiceovers. I hope you’re happy.
Lynette then wakes up from this dream like only people on television shows do:
For the love of crap: It’s now Friday Morning. Lynette meets up with Susan and Gabby to tell them about the dream. Lynette laments about doing nothing to help Mary Alice. Save the Housewife. Save the world.
The three ladies then notice a new neighbor moving in to the Young house. Honestly, it’s so nice to see them together, but where’s Bree been? Sure it may have been “insensitive” to invite her to Margarita night on the porch last week, but where is she for the coffee clutch? Anyway, the ladies are just heading over to introduce themselves, when Lynette wonders aloud whether or not this poor guy (unmarried, taking care of sickly sister) knows that Mary Alice killed herself in his new living room. Thinking better of being the bearer of bad news, the female Dusty, Lucky and Lil’ Ned decide to let the guy unpack without their spreading of ill-cheer.
It seems that Bree was way too busy approaching her husband about the abuse charges Alma brought up against him, which Carolyn brought to her attention last week. Orson explains that he didn’t beat Alma but rather pushed her after she attacked him. Orson, ever the handy-dandy, was explaining to Alma that she couldn’t get a wine stain out with dish soap, causing her to go berserk and start beating him with a Sautee pan. Ha! These lines are delivered from Kyle MacLachla like pure comic gold. The man is doing his best ever work here. Bree reluctantly accepts his explanation but adds the coda: “I just wish there were fewer things for you to explain.” See here is where I’d usually deride Bree for being such a dumb character for believing Orson, but gosh, if I don’t also believe Dr. Giggles. Sure, he ran over Mike, but come on, if you saw Mike Delfino walking across the street wouldn’t you also him run him over with your car? No? Just me? Fine.
The Babe is all boobs and brass as she heads to Lynette and Tom’s for a little chitchat. I’m so glad that The Babe finally made her move on Tom, and that Lynette and Tom didn’t have a big, stupid fight over it. Upon seeing The Babe start talking to Tom, Lynette gets one of the best non-Carolyn lines of the night: “Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. You’ve stepped onto my property and now you’ve talked to Tom. That’s two rules you’ve broken and I’m not sure that top doesn’t make three.” The Babe informs the Scavos that both she an the mini-Babe are moving to Mexico. AND IT’S ALL LYNETTE’S FAULT! AGAIN!
At the divorce ruling of Gabby and Carlos, it seems like everything is going to go Gabby’s way because she’s wearing a cloistered nun outfit and her hair is so feathered that Blaire from The Facts of Life is way jealous. If that doesn’t spell success I don’t know what does. Just as Gabby is about to hit Free Parking on the Monopoly board that is her life, Carlos’ lawyer comes out with the smoking gun. The pain and suffering that Gabby is claming doesn’t seem so evident on the tape that Carlos has of them doing the nasty a few days ago. The ruling is in favor of Carlos (Gabby gets the house; Carlos gets everything in it and doesn’t have to pay alimony), which leads to the “hysterical” physical removal of Gabby from the judges chambers, all while she is screaming about wanting to kill Carlos! When did Gabby’s scenes turn into the most cringe-worthy of any given episode? Apparently Eva didn’t read the note I wrote her in my recap asking her to leave the physical out of her comedy.
In what is immediately the last believable scene in Desperate Housewives history, we see Susan cleaning under her sink (I mean, Susan… cleaning? When was the last time she was even home?), as she discovers an empty beer can from Julie’s tutoring session with Austin. Julie starts to explain to her mother the very innocent situation, but in this woefully, poorly written scene Susan starts to accuse Julie of drinking. Wasn’t one of the best things about Susan, her Gilmore-esque relationship with Julie? Now all of a sudden she doesn’t trust her very sensible daughter? Julie points out as much, but it’s hard to side with her, because she is such a terrible actress. Like, Tara Reid’s work in Body Shots and Alone in the Dark look like shoe-ins for the Film Conservatory by comparison. Honestly, Julie doesn’t even convey “alive” very well, none the less anger. Julie sends her mother to her room (which comes off a lot snottier than it is supposed to, I think) to finish packing. Susan defends her title as mother, but Julie shoots back with the fact that she is the one packing her suitcase, doing her laundry and balancing her checkbook. Now, just to spite Susan, Julie is heading out to pick up some toothpaste for her Paris-bound mother.
Carolyn is driving down the street and catches up with Bree, who is walking with a basket of flowers. Could it be!?!? Is she the mystery person who told Carolyn about Harv’s affair with the Wisteria Lane bicycle, Monique? Carolyn is wondering why Bree hasn’t returned any of her phone calls after finding out that Orson beat Alma. Bree admits that Orson gave her a reasonable explanation and then Egads! It was Bree who spilled the beans!
Tom starts looking up flights to Mexico, as he’s going to reenact a male version of “Not Without My Daughter” to talk some sense into The Babe. Lynette then takes the big step and says that they should just sue for custody of Kayla. Tom can’t believe it, because Lynette hates even the kids that spurn forth from her own loins, none the less The Babe’s. Lynette admits that while she missed the opportunity to drown her own four kids at birth (I am loosely paraphrasing), they’ve grown on her. She’s sure Kayla will too.
Ugh. We’re back at Carlos and Gabby’s where they are trying to desperately be a Telenovela version of War of the Roses. Gabby, not pleased with the fact that Carlos gets all the possessions in the house, starts breaking expensive vases. Carlos’ response is to start sledge hammering in the walls. Snore.
Julie is at the market where, natch, she runs into Bad Boy on the loose, Austin. For some reason, although Julie “can’t stand him” she lets him hold her basket (not a euphemism). Austin, in true bad boy form, takes this opportunity to slip the bottle of liquor he was trying to swipe into Julie’s backpack.
Carolyn, fresh from her revealing convo with Bree, calls up Harvey at the Market to confront him about Monique. Harvey says it doesn’t matter, because Monique is dead. Ahh, but if she weren’t, who would Harv be with? That’s what Carolyn wants to know. Harvey doesn’t give his wife an answer, just reiterates that Monique is dead so the point is moo (“It’s like a cow’s opinion. It doesn’t matter. It’s Moo.” -Thank you Joey Tribiani). Their conversation is interrupted however as Harvey is called over to the checkout counter, where Julie and Austin are being accused of shoplifting. It seems that Julie kept her money in her backpack, not her pocket as Austin had hoped, and when she went to get some dough, the unpaid bottle of booze fell out.
Susan, meanwhile, is packing for her trip to Paris with Ian, who has just arrived to pick her up via Limo. I like Ian, I really do, and it’s not just because I hate Mike or because he tones down Susan to a dull screech. But, err, doesn’t he still have a comatose wife? I mean, brother hasn’t been at the hospital for weeks. Moving on is one thing… Anyway, Susan is over packed (women!) until Ian informs her that she can buy whatever she needs in Paris a la his expense account. Cha ching! Now I’m not saying she’s a gold digger…
Just as the lovebirds are about to leave Susan gets a phone call from Harv about her daughter’s sticky fingers and has to head over to the Market.
Lynette is also at the market, making small talk with the new neighbor, Art, she and the girls saw earlier. Now if your mind was blown last week when we saw that Carolyn’s husband was played by Aunt Jackie’s former boyfriend, Gary, you’re really gonna be in for a treat when you notice that Art is played by the very same guy who played Aunt Jackie’s abusive boyfriend, Fisher. And… And… And… Fisher and Aunt Jackie – married in real life! With these three on Desperate Housewives, Sara Gilbert on The Class, Sarah Chalke as the light of my life Elliot on Scrubs, John Goodman guesting on Studio 60 and the original Domestic Goddess herself popping up in My Name is Earl and her own HBO special, the world is finally safe for the Conner clan. Now if only someone could find DJ.
Lynette sees The Babe entering the market and abruptly ends her chat with Art so she can hide from The Babe’s maternal wrath.
Susan and Edie are in Harv’s office with their delinquent children. Julie is trying to defend herself to her mother, but Susan wants nothing to do with it. The Julie that Susan knows would’ve never had a boy over or drink beer, so now Susan doesn’t know if she can believe Julie’s claims of innocence. In a nice small touch, Austin makes some smart ass comment about the next step in Julie’s downward spiral would be listening to “the rock & roll” music,” which elicits a head flick from Aunt Edie. Susan storms out of the office to tell Ian that he can leave for Paris without her, but not before playing the Mother Guilt Ace of Spade: “I’m so disappointed in you!”
Susan walks out, just as Carolyn is walking in. “Hey Carolyn!” to which Carolyn only mutters. Wait a second! Didn’t we see Carolyn talk-mutter that same thing to someone earlier in the episode!?!? Lame.
Edie is trying to get Austin off the hook by offering him up as Harv’s sex slave for a month. No, stock guy for a month. Austin objects to the terms as he doesn’t feel that hard labor is equivalent to the $10 bottle of whiskey he stole. Edie states that part of his punishment is that he was too dumb to at least steal a good brand of Whiskey. Its family values like that which keep America’s future bright.
The Babe meets up with Lynette (in the background, Carolyn is facing off against Harvey, which we’ve already seen) and is none too pleased by the fact that she is suing for custody. The Babe makes all kinds of threats towards Lynette, but as we saw last week, she’s just way out of her league.
The bickering ends when a gun shot is fired by Carolyn. And now we’re all caught up! Yay! Harvey, still in mid-argument with Edie, runs into his office with her in tow. Carolyn screams for them to get out, stops for a second to compose herself, and then fully embraces the fact that she is a crazy lady holding people hostage in the back of a food market.
Outside, Susan is telling Ian that she can’t make it to Paris, because Julie waited 16 years to rebel and Susan isn’t going to miss a minute of it. Ian suggests bringing Julie with them to Paris, but Susan doesn’t feel like eating crepes and checking out the Louvre will really sell Julie on what she did wrong.
The Babe and Lynette are still at the front of the store where they get the lowdown on the sitch from a stock guy. The brave kid thinks he can make it to the door, but has no idea that Carolyn is really Aunt Jackie who is REALLY Quick Draw McGraw. She spins around and shoots the guy in the back, proving that Carolyn isn’t foolin’ around when it comes to her hostages. “Attention shoppers we’re having a special today on not getting shot, but it’s only available in the back of the store.” Oh Carolyn, how you slay me.
We meet some of the other hostages, which include a woman whose son is in Carolyn’s Sunday School class, new guy Art (payback’s a bitch, Fisher), Austin, Julie and some other randoms. The Babe and Lynette are still, quite humorously, cowering in the front of the store.
Carolyn introduces herself (always the hostess!), while imploring Harvey to come out of his office so they can have a little chat face to barrel of gun. Harvey has phoned the police, but Edie thinks he should just go out there and take “one for the team.” Sometimes I really like Edie, because whatever I say about Nicolette Sheridan and her questionable gender, black comedy just flows effortlessly from her lips, like urine from her penis.
At the front of the store Lynette is using her cell phone and her wiles to phone home and get in touch with Tom. When she gets on the phone with Parker, one of the younger minions of Lucifer she put forth on Earth, it’s one of the funnier scenes of the night. Parker is complaining about his brothers not sharing their Legos and Lynette has to promise him a robot that can shoot lasers from its eyes to get him to calm down and give the phone to Tom. Unfortunately by the time Tom gets to the phone, Lynette and The Babe have been spotted by Carolyn.
Susan, always kind of slow on the uptake, sees that people are starting to run out of the parking lot in a panic. You don’t have to be that mutant from Blue’s Clues to piece together the fact that something is up in the Market. Susan’s final clue is that the stock guy has been shot, so she runs to the store doors and sees Carolyn, which she takes as a relief. “Carolyn open up my daughter’s inside. There’s a crazy woman in there!” It then becomes abundantly clear to Susan that Carolyn knows all about the crazy woman.
Mrs. McClusky, thank God I get my weekly fix, goes to Gabby and Carlos’ house to tell them about the Hostage situation and the resulting cocktail party that Bree is hosting in honor of it. But when Gabby opens the door she is a wreck, as is the house, and Carlos is wielding a chainsaw.
At the Hodges, there are hors d’oevres, coffee’s on its way, and Bree is officially an even better host then Carolyn is a hijacker. You win again, Bree.
At the Market, Carolyn is giving her side of the story. He didn’t only betray her (“With a Stewardess named Monique! How cliché is that?”), but he embarrassed her. She keeps getting interrupted by these pesky police officers trying to negotiate a release, and it’s really getting on her nerves. Finally she picks up the phone to yell at the cops, but it’s just her buddy Tish. It’s hysterical as they she starts making excuse for standing Tish up. Laurie Metcalf just needs to get whatever kind of Emmy they can throw at her for this role.
Meanwhile, Austin is just chilling not at all worried about the crazy lady with the gun in his face. Julie can’t believe that he’s so calm, but I suppose she didn’t really Chapter 12 of the Bad Boy Handbook entitled: Bad Boys in a Hostage Situation: Nerves Are For Pussies. Austin knows he’s not going to die today and neither is Julie. Well, duh. They wouldn’t start your whole misbegotten Romeo & Juliet story arc if they were just going to kill you midway through it. Unfortunately.
Susan has decided to approach the cops on scene about trading places with her daughter in the store. “Oh you mean our hostage exchange program,” one of the officers glibly inquires. Hmm, wouldn’t they be, I don’t know, a little nicer to the mother of one of the hostage victims? Just a thought…
Susan never to take no for an answer, even when we are begging her to please, oh for the love of all that is holy please stop, decides to take matters into her own, very skeletal hands. She grabs a bullhorn from a cop car, and makes a plea with Carolyn to let Julie go and take Susan in her place, that is actually quite amusing.
Back at Bree’s, the party (Carlos & Gabby are now in attendance) is raging on, until the reporter on television announces that the person holding everyone hostage is Carolyn Bigsby. Bree immediately starts to feel guilt about the zinger she threw at Carolyn earlier today about her husband’s affair. To make matters worse, Edie callsthe house and tells Andrew that she, Julie and Lyentte are also in the store. Everyone is shocked and incredibly upset by this news. Way to harsh the party’s buzz Andrew! Just then Tom shows up with his brood, asking for Bree to baby sit, unaware of what’s going on at Fields Market.
What I don’t get, however, is why wouldn’t they all assume that there were people they knew in the store in the first place. I mean, at this random moment in time no less the five people from the block are in there, and it’s obviously close enough that Julie could walk there. The minute you heard about the stick-up wouldn’t you assume some people you at least casually knew were in there?
Bree is a mess and the only thing that can help her through this is making some bruschetta. I know that I always calm myself down with a nice Italian appetizer. She’s blaming herself for sending Carolyn over the deep end, which is actually quite accurate. If for once she had been the bigger person, none of this would be happening. That is why tonight, Bree Van De Hodge gets this week’s Paper Plate Award for biggest Asshole on Wisteria Lane.
Carolyn is boozing on some cheap wine and breaking her diet with a cookie. Inside the office, Harv is on the phone with the police who suggest he get on the intercom to try to calm Carolyn down and get her to release the kids and old people. Harv does so, but he only accomplishes getting Carolyn more and more annoyed, especially when he doesn’t notice her new haircut. But what really sends her through the roof is hearing Edie’s voice in the background. “She’s another one of your whores,” Carolyn exclaims. But how wrong Caolyn is; Edie isn’t one of Harvey’s whores, she just a general whore. There? That make it better, Carolyn?
Next is what I can only hope is the last chapter in the epically annoying saga of the Solis divorce. The news of Julie and Lynette in the hostage situation (no one cares about Edie), really hits home for Gabby, but what is worse is the fact that she finds Carolyn totally relatable. With all the antics that Carlos & Gabby have been up to during the divorce, she could see herself turning into someone just like Carolyn. This is where I have to say a big: “Huh?” I’m sorry, I know I was never full invested in this story arc, but I just never felt like either Gabby or Carlos was really that far off the deep end. They were just acting like the worst version of themselves. Carlos and Gabby call a truce, but I can’t help but note that Oliver and Barbara Rose never reached a civil arrangement.
Tom has met up with Susan in the parking lot of Fields Market, and is assuring Susan that Julie will be fine. She tries to offer him the same sympathy, but Tom isn’t worried about Lynette. She has experience relating to someone who hates her husband.
In the store, The Babe has grown tired of keeping her mouth shut, so she takes this time to try to make her point about not wanting to lose Kayla to Lynette. That is so Un-Babe of you! Carolyn tells Lynette that “you and your friend are really starting to bug me.” Lynette can’t help herself and mutters, “She’s not my friend.” Unnecessary, Lynette. The Babe, of course, can’t shut up either, letting Carolyn know that Lynette is trying to steal her kid. As Lynette is trying to talk her way out of this she mentions that The Babe put the moves on her husband. This is all Carolyn needs, as she puts a bullet in The Babe’s chest.
We can also see quite clearly that Carolyn has totally lost it as she looks very coldly and calmly at the dieing Babe and tells a shocked Lynette: “I believe the phrase you are looking for is thank you.”
Outside in the parking lot the shot has been heard and Susan is mondo concerned. The one bright spot is Ian, who saw the news on the telly in the airport and ran back to Susan’s side.
The identity of the hostage victim is unknown to the press, but they do report it causing shock and awe around Wisteria Lane.
The three demon Scavo spawn feel a disturbance in the Dark Side, and come downstairs asking for their mother. Bree doesn’t know what to say, so she offers them some cookies. Parker argues that: “Mommy says we can’t have cookies before dinner,” to which Bree can only say, “Well, your mommy might be dead, so we can throw out the old rule book!”
Lynette and Art are trying to dress The Babe’s wounds, but if Bon Jovi can’t survive being shot through the heart, what chance does The Babe have? Lynette lies to The Babe and tells her she’s going to be fine and implores Carolyn to let them take her out. The Babe realizes that she doesn’t have much time left, and leaves Kayla to Lynette’s keeping. With her last breaths she says that Kayla was the only good thing she’s ever done and begs Lynette to take extra-special care of her and to not change her name to something that starts with a P. Okay that last one I made up. And with that: Babe Out!
So here it is the end of The Babe. Now I realize that I may have been the only person in America who embraced, nay, adored The Babe, so many of you aren’t as beat up as I am over her demise. I also have to admit that the show did a good job of not letting us know who the death was going to be (although they made it clear via spoilers and promos that there would, in fact, be a death), but it was fairly obvious when the motley crew of hostages were assembled that Nora was the odd Babe out. So for old time’s sake: Hey Babe!
Carolyn doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about, saying that Lynette wanted The Babe dead. Well, that’s just about as much as Lynette can take. Ugh. Thank God for Felicity Huffman, whom this show is so often not worthy of. But not today. Lynette starts fighting back, and it’s a testament to Ms. Huffman’s talents that something as seemingly small as her dabbing her chin with The Babe’s blood, is taken as part of her fear, anger and exasperation. Carolyn, somewhat logically (crazy logic, but logic none the less), says that if Lynette didn’t want The Babe dead, it was probably not a smart idea for her to tell Carolyn about The Babe being a home wrecker. In case Lynette hadn’t noticed, Carolyn has some PRETTY strong feelings about home wreckers. Lynette rips into Carolyn about not being able to deal with her pain and her problems in a brilliant tirade, forgetting for a moment that she is being held at gun point. The screaming match ends with Carolyn screeching that The Babe deserved to be shot for what she did. Lynette returns with: “Maybe you deserved to be cheated on!” This doesn’t please Carolyn all too much:
Lynette immediately regret her outburst:
Carolyn is ready to shoot Lynette when Art chucks a can at her head, causing the gun to go off and shoot Lynette in the arm, instead of the face. Austin decides to also play hero, as he tries to keep a stunned Carolyn away from her gun, but is overpowered by the 125 pound Forty year old. I know someone is going to leave a comment about the adrenaline of a crazy person, blah blah blah – it’s still highly unlikely that Austin couldn’t take Carolyn in a fight. Luckily he doesn’t have to, as there is another shot and this time, Carolyn is on the receiving end of it, as one of hostages turn against her and shoots her in the head. I assumed, at first that it was Julie, and then thought probably Edie. But no, it was random lady whose son was in Carolyn’s religion class. Nice touch.
Outside the Market, the hostages are being released, with Julie and Susan reuniting. Julie then sees Austin and gives him a big hug, which is a cause for concern for Susan. Finally, Lynette gets wheeled out and all is right in the world. Bree is especially relieved.
That night Lynette again has the Mary Alice dream, but this time instead of ignoring her friend’s pain, she goes over to talk to Mary Alice. Lynette wants to save Mary Alice, but she can’t: “We can’t prevent what we can’t predict,” Mary Alice says. It’s an ominous piece of sage advice that Mary Alice sends her friend off with to clear her conscience.
So alright, alright, just admit it… how many of you are glad to be rid of The Babe?