'Desperate Housewives' Finale Proves Classically Desperate

PEOPLE's TV critic found it sweet, pat, a bit anticlimactic – and it sped by

Photo: Matthew Rolston/ABC

Desperate Housewives is over. For longtime fans of the ABC comedy-drama, the two-hour finale flew by.

The first half concluded the preposterous murder trial against Bree (Marcia Cross). It was sad to see Bree led off to the death chamber manacled and in an unflattering orange jumper. Am I kidding? As narrator Mary Alice would say: Yesssssss

The second half saw the death of one of the best-loved residents of Wisteria Lane, plus a wedding and a birth. If you’re at all up on the season you know who did what of which. In other words, it was sweet, it was pat, it was all a bit anticlimactic – but why wouldn’t it be after all this time?

Here are some moments – none of them spoilers – that made the farewell classically Desperate.

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• Lynette’s unblinking eyes slicking over with tears when husband Tom (Doug Savant) said he had filed divorce papers. From the beginning to the end, Felicity Huffman was the best actress on the show – the one who could make you pay close attention in an otherwise predictable moment.

• Bree and her lawyer Trip (Scott Bakula) make out during a recess at court – their sudden intimacy causes her to blurt out the truth about the murder.

• Gaby (Eva Longoria) declares: “It’s my turn to take care of Mrs. McCluskey, so of course I’ve been drinking.”

• A flashback bringing back the obnoxious busybody Martha Huber (Christine Estabrook), a richly deserved murder victim from season 1.

• Carlos (Ricardo Chavira) hires a woman to be the new gardener – a joke that goes back to the first season, when wife Gaby had a fling with the lawnboy.

• The use, near the end, of Johnny Mathis’s old recording of “Wonderful, Wonderful.” Just sentimental enough, not too.

• Series creator Marc Cherry‘s cameo as a mover.

• Mrs. McCluskey (Kathryn Joosten), called to the stand in court, sums up the value of suburban neighbors – they’re family. “I know it sounds sappy, damn it,” she said, “but it’s true.”

And good night and goodbye to you, too, Mrs. McCluskey.

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