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!
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 EW.com, “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 EW.com. “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.’”