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'Desperate Housewives': The chase is on

March 1, 2010 |  7:22 am

119295_1664_preIs there a new Housewife on the Lane?

Julie Benz continued to spice up Wisteria this week after seducing Katherine, who had been having steamy dreams involving food and sex – gourmet French toast has never been so deliciously sexy.

Last week, our readers seemed to be a bit split on Benz’s role as the former stripper who is trying to find a career, and now Katherine’s heart. 

"I hope the 'stripper' doesn't stick around for too long. She's not interesting at all. I think 'Desperate' is getting too desperate," Ann said.

While Justin wrote, “I actually hope they keep Julie Benz on the show for a good while. The show's been in need of an Edie replacement for a while, and I'm not seeing Angie making it past this season.”

Whether or not Benz stays or for how long might still be up in the air, but one thing is certain. Her small arc has already grown infinitely more interesting than the Angie Bolen mystery -- sorry, I’m hoping her little trip to New York to rescue Danny leads to a blood splattered conclusion for the family.

It’s not Benz’s sex appeal that is appealing to me and maybe some viewers – though it certainly doesn’t hurt for those wanting to see the vampy void left behind by Edie Brit (Nicollette Sheridan) filled – it’s her charm and chemistry with Katherine that has won me over.

119296_2030_pre

Initially I was put off by Benz’s revelation; I found it incredibly cliched that the reason she turned to women was because she was sick of men. I’ve heard that one, and it just further propels the whole it’s-cooler-to-be-a-lesbian-than-a-gay-man stereotype. Next time, I’ll tell someone I turned to men because I was sick of women, and let’s see where that gets me.

Despite my initial reservation, watching the chase between both women turned into something that wasn’t as muddled as it could have been; it actually seemed genuine. After a season of making Katherine this crazy, deranged lunatic, she finally gets a story line that actually makes sense. Her relationship with Mike last season was an absolute joke. They had zero chemistry, and it always seemed to play out a bit like a folly.

There is a real attraction between the two that has me genuinely intrigued. Viewers can debate all they want about whether or not Katherine is truly a lesbian or not, or if this is just her acting in her fragile and possibly mildly delirious state – and I certainly welcome any and all theories. Regardless, this is good for Katherine, and the show. The story line has been tackled with the class and plausibility that you can only find on ABC and, to be frank, I’m sold. Earlier this season, an episode said “everybody’s gotta have a gimmick.” Hopefully this doesn’t become one.

As usual, I relied on Gaby to provide all (and I do mean all) of my comic relief, although her subplot was basic – and one you could shoot a dart at any show and find: Kid gets chickenpox and one of the parents don’t have it. Nothing new here, but when she moves in with Bob and Lee (who seriously, seriously, seriously need more screen time) and gets a taste of life without kids, she’s hilarious as they hit the town and get sloshed -- “I said I was throwing up, and I don’t want to be a liar,” she explains to the boys pouring her another cocktail after extending her stay. Watching Gaby discover their secret desire to start a family was touching, if not all the more reason to give them more story lines -- maybe don’t drag it out as much as the show’s Sunday night sister does.

The rest of the episode? A total throwaway.

The youngest Scavo running away after Tom and Lynette forgot her birthday? A bit ridiculous. Susan convincing Roy to marry Karen? Really, we’re doing this?  A possible stalker for Bree? Please make it stop.

As excited as I was for the return of Andrew, I wanted either the back-stabbing of seasons past or the semi-warmth of recent seasons, not this silly bickering. If I know Andrew as well as I think I do, he has something up his sleeve.

In the meantime, love’s a brewing on the Lane, and let’s see where this goes.

-- Gerrick D. Kennedy (Follow me on Twitter)

Photos: Scenes from "Desperate Housewives." Credit: ABC

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