the reason for this show's popularity? it's like a sleazy Harlequin romance novel minus Fabio and a hokey setting (like a highland castle or cruise ship), plus with more of a focus amped up on the female character's backstabbing and scheming, without the embarrassing guilt of actually purchasing a paperback copy of "The Velvet Mask of the Caressing Bandit."
The whole show is narrated by a Dr. Seuss-style 3rd person voiceover, who is omnipresent and all-knowing about all the character's secret wishes and desires. There are 5 basic characters; the one played by Nicollete Sharidan (why do I know these names, anyway?) is this aged blond harridan who throws herself at men like they're going out of season. All the women on "Wisteria Lane" hate her, and her only friend was this annoying middle-aged (and unnatractive--all of the desperate housewives, need I mention, rate the "extremely attractive" category, except for that red-haired Bree one cuz she's a dragonlady) Martha Huber. Martha Huber was recently murdered by one of the 2 brunette DH's (i'm not sure which one), both of whom are trying to sleep around and get their lives back together. The other blond DH is the one who has 4 kids, and last week's episode was all about how she and her husband had to get rid of their nanny, because her breasts were too big and the husband was getting 'excited' by the nanny.
And then there's Bree, the perfect-perfect-perfectionist DH with red hair, who was taking care of her post-Heart-attack husband with resentment (since he had had an affair on her). So she was going to do her damndest to play the field by dating the pharmacist, or something, until her teenage son was embarrassing her, so finally she had to tell him the truth about his father.
And then there's one of the two brunettes whose husband was a drug-smuggler, she has to find work and so she was at the mall posing with a car until she saw one of her neighbors and freaked out and hid. And the other brunette has this scummy ex , who embarrassed her at a Kareoke bar and who was trying to get back with her, but she wants to stay with her new flame, "Mark".
Drama Quotient? Off the charts.
Sleazy backstabbing quotient? Worse than medieval courtier level.
Satisfying junk tv quotient? You decide.