DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES: James Denton Teases the Fallout From Susan and Carlos' Confession to Mike - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES: James Denton Teases the Fallout From Susan and Carlos’ Confession to Mike

October 16, 2011 by  

Only on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES would a murder cover-up be preferable to an affair.

But that’s the situation for Mike Delfino, who was convinced his wife, Susan was cheating on him with his good buddy Carlos. Instead, they finally admitted to him in the last episode that they weren’t sleeping together — Carlos had actually killed his wife’s evil stepfather and the women of Wisteria Lane had helped him cover it up. Since Carlos and Susan were the only ones feeling real guilt, the duo bonded over that.

So how is Mike dealing with things now that he knows the truth?

I talked with DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES star James Denton (Mike) about what fans can expect from the fallout, why he’s okay with Mike taking a backseat, the upcoming end of the series and more…

Mike had a bit of a shock in the last episode when Susan and Carlos finally told him the secret they had been keeping. How is he going to deal with the fact that his wife has been covering up a murder?
James Denton:
Well, I think that the main thing for Mike was that they weren’t having an affair. You know, at the end where she comes in and she says we’re going to tell you the truth, [Mike] kind of has that air of, “Just tell me. I know what it is. You guys are having an affair. Just get to the truth.” And so I think there was a little bit of a relief about what it was.

And you know Mike is no stranger to this kind of…dark side of people, having been through all that — been in jail and his background with Deidre and all of that stuff from the early seasons. So it’s not like Mike is any kind of a prude. He’s certainly got the darkest criminal background on the street. So I think more than anything, he was relieved that they weren’t having an affair and from then on, it’s pretty much damage control.

He didn’t handle it the best way possible, but like you said, there was relief that it wasn’t an affair. Is he going to be confronting any of the women about how they handled what went down? Is he going to be looking over things to see how thorough they were in covering their tracks?
Um, not as much that as he gets some of the details from Susan, because he has a little more experience with this kind of stuff, and you know, the law and sort of the gray area of the criminal stuff like that. So I think more than anything, he just wants them to stay quiet and sort of let it go away. You know, don’t do anything stupid, but he pretty well stays out of it. He definitely gets involved, but not too much so.

I know that’s really vague, but there’s not much else I can tell you! [Laughs] It’s sort of Susan’s mess and from a distance, he more tries to help her deal with it herself. He sort of stays out of the covering up the crime and it’s more, “Okay, here’s how you deal: when you had this stuff in your past, you have to deal with it. You can’t just act like it never happened.” Because he’s been through all that before and so he more tries to help her as a husband deal with it emotionally.

Understandable. Are Mike and Susan still solid in their marriage in what you’re filming right now or are they going through some rocky times?
They’re pretty solid. I think that, thankfully…I mean, it causes huge problems for them and it’s, I think, very realistic, the emotional impact it has on their lives — they differ in how to handle it and that causes some conflict. So, you know, solid I think might be a little bit optimistic, but I’d be shocked if it split them up, but it is definitely causing a lot of problems in what we’re shooting right now. So we’ll see. I don’t know. I don’t know the answer to that, luckily. Teri [Hatcher (Susan)] taught me that in season 1: Never ask, so you don’t know, so then you can’t say anything stupid to the press! So I don’t know what’s going to happen.

It feels like they’re going to make it. I think that’s the best thing for…they spent so much time apart, together, apart, together, that I’d be shocked if it split them up. It’s definitely causing a lot of problems in what we’re shooting right now in the middle of the season.

You mentioned they were off-on, but they’ve been one of the most solid couples in recent years. Do you hope they end up together when it’s all said and done or do you kind of like the conflict between them?
You know, I think that conflict is real and natural and believable, so I think that’s all good. I’d hate to see them split up after all this, you know, all the way around to get them together. I think the conflict is very good. If it was all marital bliss, that wouldn’t be very rewarding to anybody. Particularly, people like to watch couples that they can relate to and they like their TV characters to be pretty believable. And I think all the conflict is very, very natural and happens in real life, so I think that’s all good as long as we don’t split them up, but that’s way out of my control. It’s a little above my pay grade.

I agree that conflict is fine, but personally, I agree that I want Mike and Susan to end up together. Given how much of this season is looking back at the first season, are you hoping we get a little more Mike-centric storytelling? Possibly bringing back his history with the Mary Alice mystery?
That’s a tough call.  Mike has seen so much over the seasons that I never really know what to expect. It’s just a matter of, you know, get the script and do the best service that you can with the character. I mean, he’s such a different guy than he was in the first couple of years. So you know, it’s Susan’s story and I’m happy sort of throwing softballs with Teri because she’s such a great actress. She’s so funny. And I don’t know if we would be better served if Mike had a bigger role. He definitely gets involved in this mystery, which is fun and I’m glad of that, but I think it’s the right amount. Give them a couple of scenes an episode, but I never felt like, “Oh, I wish the guys had a higher profile,” because that’s a different show.

So I’m very happy with Mike [and] my couple of scenes an episode showing the relationship side to Susan’s story. It’s become very comfortable over eight years to let the women have all the pressure. We just kind of go in and do our thing.

Yeah, you get to add a little testosterone to the show. You go in and do what you do and it’s good.
Well, thanks!

Are there any episodes you are particularly excited for fans to see?
I very much like this one coming up. For me, the most rewarding stuff is with Ricardo [Chavira (Carlos)] because we’ve had such an interesting friendship over the seasons. You know, we lived together for a while, we were roommates, so Mike and Carlos have a big history. So for me, I think that’s the most interesting thing about this conflict. And there’s a really great scene in the next episode where Mike kind of confronts him on a friendship basis. Like, we’re friends, you know, how Mike feels about him dragging his wife into this and I think that people will relate to that because I think there are viewers are going, “Hey, wait, these guys have been friends for a long time and we need to address that.” And we do. And I think that’s my favorite stuff coming up, [the scenes] between Mike and Carlos.

I know you mentioned earlier that you were in the halfway point of the season. How weird is it for you guys to know you are at the final stretch of episodes for the show? Is it kind of sinking in that this is going to be over soon?
Um, yeah, it definitely is. And that’s good and bad. I mean, it’s a little melancholy. I’ve been with this crew for a long time. I was involved with some of them on THREAT MATRIX, so that was on before DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES. So I’ve been with this crew for, gosh, I don’t know, 10, over 10 years, so that for me, more than anything, is a little bittersweet. It’s always exciting as an actor to move on and see what else is out there. You can only play one character for so long. I never would have left the show. You know, I’m so thankful for it, so it’s a good thing they’re forcing us to leave, because I would have never left. I mean, it’s a little sad because we’ve got the best crew. I’ve been a regular on four shows and this is the best crew I’ve ever had and so that’s what’s hard for me — missing the crew.

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