It's so hard finding good shows about help these days.
PBS' hit Brit import Downton Abbey, which humanizes the servants and nobility with equal sensitivity and wit, is an exception. In the second cable series within a month depicting the class divide between the unhappy rich and the equally conflicted domestics who tidy their fabulous homes if not their messy lives, both extremes of the economic scale are patronized with cartoonish levels of camp and melodrama.
If you liked Marc Cherry's Desperate Housewives, then you're pretty much already seen Lifetime's Devious Maids — what's next, Dangerous Masseuses? The characters and situations may be different, but creator/executive producer Cherry's signature tone of arch cattiness leavened with sentimental schmaltz is unmistakable...
Washing the windows is no concern when scrubbing bloody floors and covering up illicit affairs are part of your professional duties. Such filthy tasks are all in a day's work for Beverly Hills cleaning ladies Carmen, Marisol, Valentina, Rosie and Zoila. It's enough to turn anyone a little...devious.
Inspired by the hit Mexican telenovela The Disorderly Maids of the Neighborhood, the new Lifetime sudser Devious Maids was adapted for American audiences by Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry and features the same wickedly over-the-top tone. "But there are subtle differences," Cherry explains. "Devious Maids deals with themes of racism, classism and immigration. These women all work in the homes of rich people, but they have goals and dreams that are much greater than the people they work for realize."
The drama begins with the death of a mischievous maid named Flora...
So what if Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy March were 21st-century Manhattanites rather than Civil War-era transcendentalists? That's the vibe I'm getting from Related — all the warm, fuzzy sister stuff I loved about Little Women mixed up with the outlandishly huge loft apartments and excessively impractical shoes I've come to expect from TV's version of modern-day New York City. And it's quite the day of life-changing events for the Sorelli family: Rose has pierced her tongue and changed her major; Marjee's been evicted; Ann's breaking up with her one-of-the-family-now boyfriend (don't leave us, Dan Futterman!) and Ginnie's pregnant. I'm pretty sure they wrote in that last major plot point at the last minute just to steal Tom and Katie's thunder. And to top it all off, their long-widowed pop finally popped the question to his new girlfriend. (Oh, and Tom Irwin? I don't care if you play Moving-Forward Dad here, or Sweet-But-Stern Small-Town Dad on R