The looming end of Desperate Housewives: About time?

After years of shrinking ratings and outrageous storylines, the suburban-scandal soap's upcoming eighth season will be its last

The one-time TV game-changer, "Desperate Housewives," starring Eva Longoria (left), Felicity Hoffman (center), and Teri Hatcher (right) will enter its final season this fall.
(Image credit: Facebook/Desperate Housewives)

Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry has announced that his "soapy, sappy, silly, and sassy" TV show will end next May, at the end of its upcoming eighth season. The primetime ABC soap — which stars Felicity Huffman, Teri Hatcher, Marcia Cross, and Eva Longoria as suburban friends connected by a web of salacious mysteries and relationships — was an Emmy-winning pop culture phenomenon when it debuted in 2004. But over the years, a decline in viewership accompanied a widely-noticed decline in the show's quality. Is it time to say goodbye to Wisteria Lane? (Watch a promo for the final season.)

Yes. Housewives' best days are behind it: Soaps are notorious for burning through storylines "incredibly quickly," says Margaret Lyons at New York. But even for a soap, Housewives set fire to plot points at a manic, unprecedented pace. There's only a certain number of times characters can become pregnant, have affairs, and live through a series of implausible calamities, and Housewives far exceeded that number years ago. The result? Everyone knows that "Housewives has been running on fumes for years."

"Desperate Housewives will end after this season"

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Regardless, expect the show to end on a high note: "There was a time when it seemed like the Housewives were destined to go on forever," says Becky Kirsch at BuzzSugar. The show consistently maintained at least some loyal fans, and actually held up surprisingly well over its years-long run. But now, with so much warning ahead of the show's ultimate end, the creative team can craft the "perfect finale," and help Housewives go out with a bang.

"Desperate Housewives to end after one more season — are you sad?"

And be remembered fondly: It's hard not to care about the end of Housewives, says Adam B. Vary at Entertainment Weekly. The series will be remembered as landmark television — despite its sometimes-questionable story lines and ratings dip. It's an "all too rare event" that a TV show centers on so many "fully realized female characters and becomes a cultural phenomenon." Beyond that, it was "fun," and "unlike anything else on TV."

"When did you stop watching Desperate Housewives? And will you come back?"

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