Just to be perfectly clear, ABC’s trashy new sudser Mistresses isn’t going to be part of next year’s Emmy race — unless, of course, any/all of the following categories are introduced by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences:
* Best Adjustment of a Sexy Leather Skirt Following a Quickie in a For-Sale Piece of Beachfront Real Estate
* Best Accidental Flash of Garter During a Business Meeting
* Best Deliberate Flash of Garter After a Business Meeting
* Best Future Psychiatric Malpractice Suit for Sleeping With Sexy Dying Patient, Holding Sexy Patient’s Widow’s Hand During Funeral, Attracting Subsequent Romantic Attention (Without Forceful Rebuff) of His Grieving Son (Oh hells yeah/no!)
* Best Use of “My Late Husband’s Damn Ghost Is Blowing Up My Phone!” as Excuse for Not Reentering Dating Pool With Sexy Divorced Dad
In other words, Mistresses is pure, (not-so-)guilty summer fun — probably not for the whole family — but certainly for those members who long for the era when Titans, Central Park West or at least Desperate Housewives were still on the airwaves. (Me: “Guilty as charged!”)
So let’s boil down the action (both shteamy and otherwise) for our quartet of protagonists — while raising pertinent questions we’ll need to see answered in their futures:
* Savannah (Alyssa Milano) | Lawyer Savannah and her chef hubby Harry are unsuccessfully trying to get pregnant, which has sapped much of the boom-boom-pow from their sex life. When their doctor informs them it’s Harry’s “sperm morphology” that’s the culprit, he withdraws emotionally, leading Savi to buy some sexy lingerie and plan an improptu seduction. One little complication: When her work starts piling up, smokin’ hot coworker Dominic agrees to have the completed file on her desk by morning — if she flashes her undergarments for five full seconds. DEAL! Harry, on the other hand, rejects Savi’s advances, and later turns nasty, accusing Savi of being secretly relieved to not be facing a pregnancy that might bump her from the partnership track at work. This drives our protagonist back to her desk — or, er, on top of her desk — in an unbridled display of passion with Dominic. It’s not right, but it’s rated O…as in the Big O, if I ain’t being too subtle! Key questions: Is Harry already getting it on with that skanky hostess at the restaurant who deliberately forgets the identity of the boss’s wife every time they meet? (Yes, obvi!) Is Dominic secretly angling to beat out Savi for partner? How is it that Alyssa Milano never ages? How many guys are gonna get slapped with an HR summons for attempting the “flash me your lingerie and I’ll finish your work” proposition this week? (Boys, harrassment suits don’t exist in primetime soaps with titles like Mistresses — at least not for folks with less than 2 percent body fat. The real world? That’s another story. Play it safe.)
* Joss (Jes Macallan) | Savi’s realtor sis is banging her very smitten, very married boss in lots of inappropriate places, but draws the line at him buying her the exclusive beach house she’s just listed and being his kept woman. Key questions: Joss is totally going to have an affair with the downtrodden half of the power lesbian couple for whom she’s currently working, right? And now that she’s living in Savi’s beach house, she’s gonna be the one to discover Harry and hostess chick’s horizontal mambo, no?
* Karen (Yunjin Kim) | Karen’s the hottest mess in the mix (thus far). When her sexy patient (coincidentally, a founding partner at Savi’s firm) confesses he’s dying of lung cancer — and that’s he’s been in love with her for at least a year — she can’t resist the urge to begin a torrid, albeit doomed affair. To make matters worse, she also prescribes Thomas (John Schneider) some pills he can use to end it all if/when the pain becomes too much. She winds up front row at dude’s funeral — clutching his wife’s hand, and later counseling his son Sam, who knew his dad was having an affair with someone. (I loved how Karen quickly covered her notes when Sam produced a love letter written in her distinctive linear script.) Long story short: Thomas chose to end his life in the arms of his wife, not Karen, and that makes her realize she was nothing more than a mistress*. And now Thomas’ insurance company is looking into his questionable cause of death. (Uh-oh.) Key questions: Is Karen covering up even more secrets, seeing how she ended the episode shredding Thomas’ files? She’s not seriously going to get something percolatin’ with his son, is she? (She totally is…which is a terrible life choice, but could make for some wicked TV. Also: Those were some awfully pretty flowers he brought to her office.) (*No duh, girlfriend!)
* April (Rochelle Aytes) | Unspeakably pretty April was widowed three years ago, and feels like she might be ready to date again — except for the fact that she keeps getting phone calls…from her dead hubby’s spirit! (Well, so she thinks.) When Hot Dead Guy calls her right as she’s prepping for a first date with Hot Dad Guy, she has Savi’s investigator trace the call to a hotel room where there’s nothing otherworldly but a harried mom whose toddler is obsessed with the phone. Later, Hotel Lady shows up at April’s door with kid in tow and confesses: It’s her love child with April’s late hubby! Key questions: Didn’t April wonder why said child was repeatedly calling her number — and apparently from different locations? Wouldn’t you totes shop at April’s home-furnishings store if it was in your town? Who else wanted the producers to play Mary J. Blige’s “Your Child” at the moment of revelation? (Just me? I can live with that.)
OK, I’m about to pass the 1,000-word count on an article about FREAKIN’ MISTRESSES! Let me turn it over to you: What’d you think of the show? Will you go back for seconds? Take our poll below then sound off in the comments!
- Alyssa Milano