Analysis Of Television Series Desperate Housewives

1931 words - 8 pages

Desperate Housewives is a hit television show about housewives and their every day lives. It is a comedy, drama and mystery series. The show takes place on a fictional street called Wisteria Lane. The show follows the lives of a group of women as seen through the eyes of their neighbor, Mary Alice, who committed suicide in the very first episode. The series records thirteen years of the women's lives over eight seasons. The women on Wisteria Lane work through domestic conflicts and marital life, while facing the mysteries and secrets hidden behind the front doors of their apparently flawless suburban neighbors.
Something worth noticing about the series are the opening credits that appear before each episode. The show begins with a painting of the biblical characters, ‘Adam’ and ‘Eve’, they are standing under the tree that carries the “forbidden fruit”. In the bible, this tree is the tree of temptation; in relation to Desperate Housewives, the tree and the forbidden fruit are representative of the lust and temptation in the live’s of Wisteria Lane’s women. Adam is then crushed by the forbidden fruit (a giant apple). One immediately notices the background music, which is a very upbeat and happy rhythm. This music adds a light humorous tone to the theme of the credits.
Then, Egyptian hieroglyphs of a women and her children are shown, which acts as a symbolism for the beginning of civilization and the importance of women at the time. Then, painting of a 15th century man is shown up front, while a pregnant woman, most likely his wife, sweeps a banana peel off the floor behind him (a banana from which he had just eaten). This image shows the subordination of the woman to the man at the time and is also comparable to the roles men and women played in the Victorian era.
After, Grant Wood’s famous painting “American Gothic” appears, which consists of a married couple with dull expressions, standing in front of a suburban home. The colors in the painting are dull and represent the dull and monotonous life of suburban living. A pin-up girl then appears in the picture as if she was flirting with the man in the painting, and then the wife’s face is enclosed in a sardine can. This is suggestive of the adultery, lies, and allurement that can exist in relationships. The image of the sardine can transitions into a kitchen, where an image of a woman most likely from the 1950’s is shown. She carries an overwhelmed look on her face while struggling with groceries, this woman portrays a typical housewife of the time. The cans she is carrying then fall out of her hands and a can of soup falls into a Roy Lichtenstein-like cartoon, where a woman punches her husband. This image shows the power of liberated women. Lastly, the four main characters of the series are shown carrying apples in their hands, and under Adam and Eve’s tree. Bree, Lynette, Susan, and Gabrielle all look empowering, seductive, or happy. The apples they hold in their hands represent the...

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