'Desperate Housewives' Will End After Season 8
'Desperate Housewives' Will End After Season 8
Laurel Brown
Laurel Brown
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Although it's still one of ABC's most-watched shows, the network plans to cancel Desperate Housewives at the end of the upcoming season.

The news was broken by Deadline.com ahead of a planned announcement this coming Sunday at the Television Critics' Association press tour. At that point, it is expected that ABC will formally announce the upcoming cancellation of Desperate Housewives after 8 seasons.

The early cancellation leak to the media means that even the main cast -- stars Teri Hatcher, Felicity Huffman, Marcia Cross and Eva Longoria -- are just finding out that they will be out of work in 2012. According to sources who spoke to Deadline.com, the actresses are "shocked and saddened" by the news.

Why is it such a surprise? There are plenty of reasons. Series creator Mark Cherry has been quoted as saying that he wanted 9 seasons for the show, and ABC has options to sign the Desperate Housewives cast for a 9th season as well. Although not the ratings powerhouse it once was (in 2004-2005, between 20 and 30 million viewers tuned in weekly), Desperate Housewives is still solid in viewership and is especially strong with overseas audiences.

On the other hand, there may have been some warning signs. Mark Cherry will not serve as the Desperate Housewives showrunner for the first time this year, serving only as a consultant while he works on other projects. The show is also dealing with a lawsuit expected to hit a courtroom soon from former star Nicolette Sheridan. She is claiming battery, wrongful termination and unlawful termination against Cherry.

Does the impending cancelation of Desperate Housewives signify a warning for other season 8 shows? Other programs of a similar age are facing widespread rumors about possible demises, even with strong ratings in their favor. At the Television Critics' Association press tour, FOX president Kevin Reilly failed to deny that House may be on its deathbed. Instead, he only indicated that he and the show's producers would be talking about how it could end in a position of strength. (Click here for more on FOX at the TCA press tour.)

Meanwhile, another of ABC's strong season-8 shows, Grey's Anatomy, is rumored to be on its way out. Add in season-8 shows like NBC's The Office (in dangerous territory following the departure of star Steve Carell) and CBS' CSI: New York (you know, the one nobody pays attention to), and it's starting to look like the networks are just plain afraid of 9th seasons.

Or maybe it's just Desperate Housewives.

What's your reaction to the cancelation of Desperate Housewives? Is it time for the show to go? Is there a chance of salvation? Why do you think it's being canceled? Leave your comments below!

(Image courtesy of ABC)