When ABC decided to turn a John Updike tale (via a movie) into a TV series, I didn’t suspect that what they were really trying to do was make Desperate Housewives 2. But thirty seconds into Eastwick, you know that’s what it is. The voice-over narration, the style of music, it’s not at all subtle about what it wants to be.
It’s about three women in varying situations: a perceived-as-ditzy no-longer-married artist with a teen daughter played by Teri Hatcher… er Rebecca Romijn, a gal married to a shmuck, and a gal in love from affair who would just be pretty if she lost the glasses and let her hair down (well, actually, she looks more interesting before she does.) They have their love goals, their career goals, their awkward gambits to do what they want.
And oh, yes, there’s a devil, played with disappointing blandness by the normally-great, I-expected-more-from-him Paul Gross. A dark man of mystery comes in and changes everyone’s lives, for no perceptable reason. In the movie, they could get to the point quickly; in the show, it’s not clear there is a point.
It’s not as fun as it wants to be, and it’s not fresh enough for that to be forgiven. But 2/3s of the female leads basically work, there could be something that emerges. Tell me if it happens.