Desperate Housewives Death Revealed: 'It's Actually Brilliant,' Says Killed-Off Cast Member

It seems only fitting that as testimonies unfold in the trial where Nicollette Sheridan is suing Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry and ABC for, among other things, wrongful termination (and thus the killing off of Edie Britt), that news of another major, canvas-shaking death would be revealed.

With the final season farewell now part of the public record, as revealed during Thursday’s courtroom session, an interview with the original cast member who got clipped — and with just a handful of episodes left in the series’ run — has surfaced. And if you wish to remain unspoiled on the imminent death, stop reading now!

Read Our Sister Site’s Full Coverage of the Nicollette Sheridan Trial

The episode airing this Sunday kicks off with a vignette in which five different characters are shown, as it is revealed that one of them will die in the next 24 hours. And the one who doesn’t come out of the hour alive is Mike Delfino, played by James Denton.

Reflecting on how Cherry called to apprise him of Mike’s fate, Denton told, “That was the first time Marc has ever given me the ‘we need to talk’ line, and I didn’t think it was me getting killed because it was so close to the end of the series. Then he said, ‘We have this idea,’ and he told me…. God bless Marc. He wants so badly not to hurt anybody’s feeling… so he was breaking it to me gently.”

Denton’s only adverse reaction to the bombshell: “Oh, it’s a bummer because I won’t be around for the wrap [party].”

As for how Mike meets his Maker, it is a somewhat apropos ending, as the man who arrived on Wisteria Lane all those years ago hiding a mysterious and dark agenda is done in by mobsters. “It’s actually brilliant,” says Denton, who has long missed his character’s edgier days. “[He] was such a shady character in the beginning…. In fact, Marc had this idea that Delfino might have mob connections, and that’s why his name was Delfino…. We just haven’t addressed [that dark past] in four or five years.”

The good news for fans of the long-running (if not always smooth-running) Susan-Mike romance is that Denton gets to share a powerful goodbye with longtime scene partner Teri Hatcher. “I told Marc, ‘I wish you’d given me scenes like this for the last five years,'” Denton told “It’s a really nice scene.”

Speaking of Hatcher: After getting the sad word from Cherry, Denton asked that he get to apprise his leading lady of his and Mike’s fate. And while the aftermath won’t afford Hatcher, one of the show’s better comedic actors, to have many laughs during the final few episodes, Denton reports that “the first thing she said about it was, ‘This is going to be great for you, so it’s OK.’ That’s how she’s been with me from the beginning. She’s been great. Then, she says, ‘OK, get out of here before I start crying.'”

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  1. JDHetherington says:


    • vks says:

      Maybe mike and cops knew this would happen, so mike was wearing a vest, and it was all for show. Now the “Mobster” thinks he’s dead.

  2. Ines says:

    I did not see this coming. I’m sad and shocked that is him.

  3. miller says:

    I was pretty sure it will be either Mrs. McCluskey or Orson. Big surprise here…but still…do NOT send Bree to jail!

  4. TV Gord says:

    “God bless Marc. He wants so badly not to hurt anybody’s feeling”

    The skeptic in me wonders whether he would have said that somewhat condescending line if Cherry weren’t embroiled in a courtroom saga across town this week.

  5. janet says:

    I figured that it was Mike as we already knew Karen was dying … Hopefully Zack will come to the funeral to mourn his dad… :-(

  6. rachel says:

    so….is this the blind item about a major character being killed off? cause that one was (is?) eating me up.

  7. Sara says:

    I’m cery disappointed..

  8. BonesFringeFan says:

    Are you kidding me? The only couple I actually care about on this show is Mike and Susan. I know they wanted to shock everyone, which believe me they have, but this is not the way they should have. Pretty disappointed…

  9. Slizabeth says:

    Was this a blind item?

  10. Karen MT says:

    I want to know how this came out in the trial. Why was it even brought up?

  11. lauren says:


    it came out because a producer was asked if another major character had been killed off, and he said “mike delfino”

  12. Rob says:

    This is the most Absurd news I’ve ever heard. Mike is Dead? what the actual heck?!

  13. Cy says:

    Figured Mike was gonna bite it, since he has been standing up to the loan shark. Hope he takes that guy out with him. Says a lot about the quality of the show when Denton is pointing out he should have had many more scenes like this instead of all the nonsense his character went through. Ridiculous the way Cherry feels compelled to kill off so many characters just to make things “exciting.”

    • Suze says:

      Agree with you. Sad to hear confirmation of the fate of this character. I saw it starting weeks ago. Although I have been watching since the start of the series, its time to let it go. Don’t much really care anymore.

  14. Angela says:

    Damn. I was hoping it wouldn’t be him (my money was on Orson, ’cause that guy’s borderline suicidal lately), he’s always been one of my favorite characters. I know my mom liked him, too, so she’s not going to be happy when the episode airs. I like him and Susan together, they had a great chemistry.
    Be very interesting to see how this pans out on Sunday.

  15. marissa says:

    Very sad about this. I really wanted Mike and Susan to have a happy ending. I haven’t watched DH this season at all but have watched all previous seasons. Seems to sad to tune in now.

  16. Jacqi says:

    Good thing its the last season, otherwise I would be done! Mike and Susan are by far my favorites!! What the heck marc cherry?!

    • debra says:

      omg!….First he kills off one of the main DH’s….then another main character like Mile Delfino??…Mile was one of my favs…I so agree with….what the heck Marc Cherry?…do you even know what you are writing these days?….I will finish watching but it will NOT be the same obviously it is gonna SUCK!I cannot even imagine what the rest is going to be like….I think Mr.”Cherry” gets more credit as a writer than he deserves…my 8 year old could have done better than that…

  17. LisaD says:

    Major bummer, Mike & Susan were my faves. Poor MJ. I’ve been a faithful viewer since the series began but I lost interest after the women killed Gaby’s step-father. I kept trying to get back into it knowing it was the last season but the characters became unsympathetic. Maybe I’ll tune in for the serie’s finale though this news makes it less likely.

  18. christine says:

    Thank you for putting this on your site. I don’t want to watch this. Mike is one of the most sympathetic characters on the show. Love him. Won’t watch this anymore.

    • TV Gord says:

      So, there are only eight episodes left in the entire series, and you’re going to stop watching NOW? I call BS.

      • Eurydice says:

        I don’t think it’s BS. If you’re a long-time fan of the character, you don’t want your last memory of him to be his death. I’m not going to watch it, either.

      • Vass says:

        Everyone is different. I used to love this show and as the years have gone by I simply stopped caring or was invested all that much. Sometimes I’d watch two weeks after the episode aired.I have seen every episode and will tough it out to see the end because I am invested just enough.Jeez….eight years is a long time.

        But for those that choose to stop watching or at least this episode, I completely understand it. To each their own for whatever reason. They can read about it online if they choose. Or watch the last episodes all together. I think we all have a different process of letting it go.

        It was a great ride for many years but I’m glad it’s ending. It’s time. I hope Cherry (?) does it justice.

      • christine says:

        The point is that I can choose to think of the show as ending in the episode last week before Mike died. It is all made up anyway. I can just this that Marc C lost his mind and forget about this later visions.

    • Mila says:

      I’ve totally lost interest too! I mean come on, he was the reason I watched desperate housewives! I felt it coming when he was expressing his love to Susan. I wish it would’ve been someone else.

  19. Rachael says:

    This is crazy!! I love it.

  20. Tracie says:

    Too bad it isn’t Bree…I love Mike and Susan’s characters.

  21. tlc19 says:

    Yeah, definitely not my favorite move. I’ve been watching this season for sentimental reasons – *loved* DH when it first began, and Susan and Mike were the draw for me. Just a fun couple to root for. This one was for buzz/shock/oh-no-they-didn’t value… not cool, Mr. Cherry. Poor Susan – her ex was killed in a horrible tragedy, and now Mike. And hey, Julie lost 2 fathers. But, it’s cool if it’ll get DH in the headlines. No thanks.

  22. anon says:

    Why exactly did this surface before the episode aired? It doesn’t seem like a leak, but rather intentional. Are the ratings suffering so much that they need to reveal it preemptively to get people to watch? I would think most shows would want to keep news like this under wraps for shock value.

  23. tani says:

    Well that sucks Susan and Mike are my favorite couple I rather have seen tom killed off if I had to pick a husband.At this point I will still watch show but I really don’t care what happens to the other characters on the show now.

  24. Marie says:

    OMG, this is such a bummer. I would have picked Carlos, Tom or Orson over Mike anytime.. not that I don’t like the others but Mike is by far my favorite and him and Susan my favorite couple. A few years ago, I was so happy to learn that it was Susan in the chapel and not Katerine and back then Marc Cherry said he would not separate them again. Not cool. I thought they deserved a happy ending after all they’ve been through. :(

    • the girl says:

      I actually was close to thinking it was Carlos after the way Gaby decided that NOW all of a sudden she should appreciate her husband. I thought to myself, that would be exactly the moment when he is ripped from her life. But let’s be honest with ourselves, without Carlos around, child services would come take those kids away from Gaby faster than Juanita and Celia polished off that apple pie from McClusky.

  25. robinepowell says:

    Awww!! I actually liked Mike and the relationship ups and downs that he and Susan had. That’s the second husband they’ve killed off. Rex was the beginning of season one and no, I don’t count Susan’s ex, because he wasn’t all that likeable.

    Why, oh, why did they have to kill off Mike? Now MJ won’t have his dad anymore. :(

  26. Tom says:

    Told ya! I was sure it was Mike.

  27. heather says:

    One of the few likable characters for me, sad

  28. Donna says:

    Why do the showrunners always believe that they need to end the series by killing favorit characters? I am all for deaths that help move the story along, or change the direction a show is going in, but these deaths at the end of a series just for kicks are getting old. When a show ends right after the death of a favorite character, that makes me not want to rewatch the show, ever.

  29. Lisa says:

    I might have been more sad about this if I still watched the show, but I stopped watching last season when I realized how stupid this show has actually gotten. I only read this article out of curiosity. RIP Mike Delfino

  30. lulucilu says:

    This is just silly. Why can’t any of the couples just be left alone to have happy endings. And the way Marc Cherry was so happy about being able to say Mike Delfino at trial was abhorrent. Even if he is being killed off, it is the end of the series. Completely different than when he killed off Edie a few years before the show ends.

  31. Extremely angry says:

    This is total crap. I’ve spent FOREVER rooting for Susan and Mike. Now Mike gets to die?! W.T.F. I’m so done with this show now.

  32. Lisa says:

    The blind item is Dan Scott on One Tree Hill.

  33. Jeremy says:

    You guys are all ridiculous- the best shows are ones that are FEARLESS! Shows that aren’t afraid to kill off a showrunner like George on Grey’s Anatomy. Shows should be be able to redefine themselves and rise to challenges. Desperate Housewives showed me before it was brave with the time jump (which completely payed off) and just as I was beginning to think it was playing it safe, it reminds me why I love it.

    I have SO much respect for them killing off Mike instead of Karen, an easy sacrifice. Most people here will think about the show for that much longer after it’s done purely because of Mike’s death.

  34. Sammy says:

    I totally predicted this! I reckon Carlos will kill himself in a few weeks time and it will end with all the housewives being single…but still desperate!

  35. T. says:

    Looks to me like he only killed Mike so he would win the Edie trail :o.

  36. Kati says:

    Can’t they kill off Bree? Mike/Susan and Lynette/Tom are the ones that deserve the happy endings. Poor Mike!

  37. Little Scarf Girl says:

    Whattttt? I haven’t watched the show religiously in ages, but I was a big fan back in the first/second season. I liked Mike, and I feel like after all the back and forth with Susan over the years it’s ridiculous to just kill him off!

  38. Roma says:

    Honestly, I would prefer Susan dead before anyone else… she’s so annoying. Always has been and now it’s even worst.

  39. Marge says:

    I am really disgusted by this! Even though I had troubles watching anything related to Susan this season I have always loved Mike! I thought Renee would be the one to be shot by the loan shark (dying or not I would have been fine with it). And I think it’s going to be a bit too much if Karen ends up dead as well… It’s really time this show ends because the more it lasts, the worse it gets!

  40. Susola says:

    Bad move killing off Mike. Worse move? Revealing it before the show is broadcast. Jump the shark moment, except the show is cancelled anyway! :(

  41. Brittney says:

    Seriously this makes me so sad. Mike/Susan were my favorite couple. and mike was one of the few likable characters. apparently marc cherry doesnt believe in happy endings :(

  42. Ace says:

    Really people, please get a grip. It is just a TV show!! I believe its unpredictability makes DH interesting. They do not play it safe. At this point it does not matter which character is killed off as this is the final season. Relax all.

  43. Candy says:

    It is a HUGE deal because the death of mike means I just watched this show for 8 years and followed the lives of all these characters just to have the show end with them having such miserable lives??? Susans life is over, she is not getting a happy ending, which she completely deserves given all she’s been through! A cheating husband and now mike dies. She’s going to be alone for the rest of her life because getting over all her trauma is nearly impossible. She watched him die! Bree is probably going to end up in jail with the rest of the girls which means none of them get a happy ending. I guess thats life? Happy endings don’t exist in the world? Maybe lynette will get back with tom but they’re relationship still has many problems. Anyways all I’m saying is to have closure with this show I would like to see them all grow old and happy. I watched their lives and learned from them, but I don’t want to end up with a dead husband that is why I feel that I just wasted all my time watching this show which really sucks!

  44. Greeneyes says:

    My heart is broken at the way Mike left the show. ?Why couldn’t it have been Renee I never really saw a great need for her…..I just loved James Denton from the first day/ night he showed up on DH…………He is such a cool guy and so darn sexy..Loved the way he and Susan had such true to life chemistry just a regular couple..
    Yep it is just a TV Show, but brings back memories of another show “Dallas”. So many people died on it, though JR did survive being shot.
    Then the whole year we spent watching, for Pam to wake up and the whole year had been a dream, there was Bobby taking a shower.what a waste…………

  45. Kimber says:

    At the beginning this was one of my fav shows then it lost its way for a bit but finally found its way to being pretty good. Mike & Susan were always my favs so to kill Mike off at the end does such a disservice. When I found out I decided I’m done, it went to crap again and I won’t even tune in anymore. Don’t get me wrong killing off characters can help move story or fit in a characters’ story but it seems he only did this to win a lawsuit. Shame on Marc Cherry!!
    When Joss Whedon or JJ Abrams kill main characters it made sense… This was senseless and self-serving! This self serving move puts a black cloud over what would have been an otherwise decent DH legacy. :/

  46. terri says:

    I was actually wondering if mikes death was a setup. I think maybe the cops, Mike and Susan set it up, when they went to the police for help I think a secret setup was made to trap that bad guy and on the last episode it will be revealed and Mike and Susan will be reunited with M.J. and that’s how the show ends. I think that would be great. We’ll see …….:)

  47. Jodi says:

    This one was PAINFUL. All of the major characters had loveable qualities, but Mike had a certain geniunity about him that was irresistible. And yes, they’re fictional, but to imagine Susan and MJ spending the rest of their lives in the shadow of this tragedy just undermines the eight years of challenges they overcame. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to stomach the re-runs.