Ruth Fisher, Six Feet Under
Yes, being a widow does sort of automatically put you in the Debbie Downer category when it comes to TV housewives and their emotional register but Ruth Fisher took mourning to a whole new level. She lost the only man she’d ever loved (literally!) to a freak car accident in the show’s pilot and then spent the better part of the show’s five seasons bed-hopping with various men in the service industry (hair-dresser, florist, funeral intern) only to end up married to a guy who went nuts and built a bomb shelter in their basement to save them from the impending apocalypse.
Patty Chase, My So-Called Life
Before Keri Russell could lay claim to the title of Craziest TV Hairstyle Change, Patricia “Patty” Chase took one good look at the state of her life — rebellious teenage daughter, adoptive father in ailing health, resentful husband on the brink of having an affair — and decided to take control by heading over to the nearest beauty parlor and asking for a layered men’s ‘do. Nothing says “I want to rekindle my marriage” more like his and hers haircuts, Patty — you’re just lucky you got canceled before that divorce storyline entered the picture.
Sun Kwon, Lost
First you try to run away from your husband only to end up marooned with him on a desert island. Next, you learn you’re pregnant, but aren’t sure if it’s your husband’s baby or if you’re knocked up by your ex-lover. Then, just when you think rescue is within reach and you and your man are on your way to a happy ending you watch him “die” in a tanker explosion, only to learn that he is actually alive somewhere else in the past. Happy? No. Confusing? Very.
The Ladies of Big Love
Don’t pretend that you wouldn’t be down if you had to share your rather lame husband with two other women in private. And then you had to pretend like everything was “normal” in public. And said husband was allowed to bring a new woman into your marriage at any time and blame his boredom on “The Principle.” And you had a gaggle of screaming shared kids of all ages to take care of. And you were always being stalked by your super scary hardcore Mormon relatives from The Compound. Oh, and you lived in Utah.
While we won’t pretend like this greedy mafia wife was a delicate flower, she was certainly far from happy — especially later in the series, when things are extremely rocky with Tony. Montage proof above.