Lily Tomlin comes to Fairview and helps her “Desperate” sister

I still watch Desperate Housewives. There, I’ve said it. While the show doesn’t have quite the guilty pleasure appeal of its first season, the current season has enough twisty twists to keep me interested. As if the lovely ladies themselves aren’t sufficient.

November Sweeps always bring guest stars to prime time and this year Housewives snagged one of the best: Lily Tomlin.

Tomlin plays Roberta McCluskey, in town to help her sister, Karen (Kathryn Joosten), figure out what Edie’s husband, Dave (Neal McDonough) is up to. (Thanks to AfterEllen.com reader Stephanie for the link.)

Tomlin and Joosten make a great pair, performing their detective work with enough camp and clumsiness to keep us smiling. Yet, the sisters do manage to learn quite a bit about Dave — at least enough to justify Karen’s suspicions that he’s up to no good.

Spoiler alert!

This week, the McCluskey sisters learned that Dave has monthly phone conversations with a psychiatrist in Boston who specializes in treating the criminally insane. They call Dr. Hiller to try to get information, but blow their cover and end up telling him that they’re really just trying to find out about the “creepy guy” who just moved to Fairview. When the doctor hears “Fairview,” he is noticeably alarmed and books the next flight there. Methinks the sleuth sisters may be in over their partially gray heads on this one.

Whatever happens with the plot, I love the meta casting. Kathryn Joosten, as you remember, was President Bartlet’s secretary Mrs. Landingham on West Wing. When Mrs. L was killed in a car accident, her eventual replacement was Deborah Fiderer, played by Lily Tomlin. Dang, I miss that show.

Desperate Housewives still airs in its original slot on Sunday at 9 p.m. ET or you can watch full episodes at abc.com.

Are you watching Desperate Housewives this season? Do you think the show has regained some of its spark? Any theories on why Dave is in Fairview?

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