Next season on "Desperate Housewives" (search): darker storylines and some dastardly deeds by a new neighbor.

So says the show's creator, Marc Cherry (search), still buoyant from the show's 15 Emmy nominations, tying "Will & Grace" as the year's top-nominated series.

"Thrilled, thrilled, thrilled!" said Cherry. "I can't even think of another word. I was just really, really happy."

He promises next year will bring "more surprises, twists and turns."

"We're going darker with some of the storylines, and Alfre Woodard's (search) (new neighbor) character is just up to no good on that street," he said.

Cherry and series star Marcia Cross (search), who plays "Housewives'" uptight heroine Bree Van de Camp, carefully dropped second-season tidbits Saturday at a panel discussion dubbed "Queer is Just a Frame of Mind on Wisteria Lane" — part of Outfest 2005: The 23rd Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.

Cherry is gay, as are some of the others on his writing staff — and many fans.

"I think any time you get four or five really strong women doing desperate, dastardly things, I think gay men get a big kick out of it," Cherry told AP Television News. "The moment you put a woman in an evening gown mowing the lawn, it's just gay."

At midpoint in season one, Bree's son Andrew (Shawn Pyfrom) was caught making out with the new gardener, Justin (Ryan Carnes), but the two actors said they don't expect their characters' pool embrace to develop into anything more.

"I don't think he's gay or straight. I think he's just Andrew," Pyfrom said.