About the Show
Dark comedy drama exploring the complicated reality behind the apparent domestic bliss of a group of housewives in a fictitious American suburb
Series 1 Summary
One day, in her perfect house, in the loveliest of suburbs, Mary Alice ended it all. From her unique vantage point beyond the grave, Mary Alice can now reveal the secrets behind the closed doors of her friends and neighbours...
Episode 1 - Pilot
The series begins with the suicide of Mary Alice Young, who narrates the episodes from beyond the grave.
Mary Alice's suicide leaves behind a puzzle involving her husband Paul, son Zach, and a mysterious toy chest.
Her funeral is held a few days later and the story begins by introducing her four friends and neighbours: Lynette, Susan, Gabrielle, Bree.
Episode 2 - Ah, But Underneath
The women of Wisteria Lane grapple with their own problems, and the disturbing note addressed to Mary Alice.
Gabrielle goes to great lengths to hide her affair with John the gardener and nearly gets caught by Carlos, who comes home early to surprise her with another luxurious gift.
Lynette tries to discipline her three boys by leaving them at the side of the road, with frightening results...
Meanwhile, Mike's dog ends up in the hospital after Edie intrudes on his date with Susan, and Bree pins the blame on Rex at marriage counselling.
Episode 3 - Pretty Little Picture
The housewives decide to go ahead with the big dinner party the late Mary Alice had planned to host - despite the more-than-minor disturbances in their own lives.
Adulterous Gabrielle finds herself with a nine-year-old blackmailer, and Bree struggles to keep her crumbling marriage a secret.
Elsewhere, Susan bares all - in more ways than one - as she confronts her ex-husband. And Lynette desperately tries to convince Tom to come to the ladies' dinner party.
Episode 4 - Who's That Woman?
Cash-strapped Mrs Huber figures out that Susan had something to do with Edie's house fire and tries to blackmail her.
Elsewhere, Carlos becomes suspicious that Gabrielle is seeing another man, but targets the wrong suspect - and Lynette recoils when the twins' teacher insists the boys have ADD.
Meanwhile, Bree struggles with her rebellious son, Andrew, after Rex moves out. And the wives manage to present Paul with Mary Alice's blackmail note in the hopes it will help find her blackmailer.
Episode 5 - Come in, Stranger
A break-in on Wisteria Lane leaves the neighbours feeling vulnerable.
Susan reluctantly accepts a date with a persistent policeman after Mike appears indifferent to her. And a lonely Bree finds herself bonding with Mary Alice's troubled son, Zach.
Meanwhile, Lynette and Tom pull out all the stops to get their uncontrollable twins accepted at a prestigious private school, and the unexpected arrival of Carlos' mother puts a crimp in Gabrielle's covert love life.
Episode 6 - Running to Stand Still
Lynette objects to a politically correct play about Little Red Riding Hood being performed at her kids' school, and Susan continues to investigate the mystery of Zach's sudden disappearance.
Mama Solis comes closer to discovering Gabrielle's dirty little secret. Then Carlos reveals that his mother has a gambling addiction, and Gabrielle slyly uses this information so she can secretly see John.
Elsewhere, Bree comes undone when Rex suggests they hire a sex surrogate.
Episode 7 - Anything You Can Do
Susan is miffed when Mike's unexpected (and very sexy) houseguest, Kendra, forces him to postpone their first official date.
Lynette becomes steadily more dependent on the twins' ADD medication, and Gabrielle becomes jealous of the other woman in John's life.
Elsewhere, Bree's kids mutiny when they learn their dad has moved out, and Mama Solis is run over moments after seeing Gabrielle and John in bed together.
Meanwhile, the enigmatic Mr Shaw comes closer to solving one of Wisteria Lane's big mysteries.
Episode 8 - Guilty
Tragedy forces the neighbours on Wisteria Lane to reassess their lives.
Susan grows suspicious of Mike's real reason for moving to the street, and Lynette reaches the breaking point in her addiction to the twins' ADD medication.
Bree tries to save Andrew from prosecution after his drunk driving puts Mama Solis in a coma.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle confesses her affair with John to a priest and the mysterious Mr Shaw gets down to business.
Episode 9 - Suspicious Minds
Bree decides to take Andrew's out-of-control behaviour into her own hands.
Elsewhere, Gabrielle decides to organise a glamorous Halston fashion show for charity, highlighting the ladies of Wisteria Lane. But Susan is less than charitable toward her friend when she discovers Gabrielle's shocking secret.
Meanwhile, Lynette uses her business acumen to poach a nanny.
Episode 10 - Come Back To Me
Susan plans to take her relationship with Mike to the next level, and Maisy Gibbons' return sees her secret life intersect with Bree's.
Carlos is sentenced for importing slave labor goods, and his and Gabrielle's possessions are seized.
Elsewhere, Susan and Mike catch Zach sneaking around in her house.
And Lynette - suspicious and more than a little jealous of her new nanny - decides to make a covert video recording of her.
Episode 11 - Move On
Edie organises a neighbourhood search for the missing Mrs Huber, just as the absent busybody's sister arrives on Wisteria Lane.
Bree resigns herself to her marital state and asks an attractive pharmacist on a date, andTom and Lynette fire Claire after he sees her naked late at night.
Elsewhere, Susan's ex, Karl, suddenly reappears in her life, and Lynette fears that Tom is attracted to the new nanny.
And Gabrielle sinks to new depths - she gets a job.
Episode 12 - Every Day a Little Death
The residents of Wisteria Lane finally learn Martha Huber's fate. Meanwhile, Bree finds her new beau George is getting a little too close for comfort.
Lynette concocts an elaborate fib about Parker's health to get into a yoga class. And Carlos returns, but his homecoming isn't quite what Gabrielle had in mind.
Episode 13 - Your Fault
When Lynette's father-in-law (guest star Ryan O'Neal) pays a visit, she unwittingly learns a family secret.
Susan is disturbed by Julie's growing romance with Zach, and Rex attempts to reconcile with Bree, warning George to stay away from her.
Elsewhere, John proposes to Gabrielle but she declines, claiming she still loves Carlos.
Episode 14 - Love Is in the Air
It's Valentine's Day on Wisteria Lane, and Susan looks forward to a romantic date with Mike, until she learns a surprising fact about her favourite plumber.
Bree discovers something new about hubby Rex, and Lynette's cranky old neighbour accuses the Scavo twins of stealing.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle's work adventures continue as she gets a gig as a mattress model for the 'Siesta King'.
Episode 15 - Impossible
Mike Delfino is questioned about Mrs Huber's murder, and John's friend Justin attempts to blackmail Gabrielle over their affair.
Tom wants a big promotion but Lynette fears that she'd be home alone with the kids more than ever.
And Bree is shocked when she finds a condom - and even more so when she learns who it belongs to.
Meanwhile, Zach Young plans a pool party for the teens on Wisteria Lane and things get out of hand.
Episode 16 - The Ladies Who Lunch
Maisy Gibbons' secret 'hobby' is exposed when she's arrested for prostitution.
When news of a little black book surfaces, Bree becomes determined to suppress the facts about Rex's dalliance with the domestic dominatrix.
Lynette is upset when her boys are accused of spreading head lice at school, and Susan gets drunk and breaks into Paul's with Edie after being heartbroken by Mike.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle and Carlos face continuing money worries and when their sewage pipes burst, they're forced to rely on their neighbours for help.
Episode 17 - There Won't Be Trumpets
Lynette befriends Alisa, a deaf woman whose children also attend Barcliff.
Meanwhile, Bree encounters more trouble with son Andrew and sends him to juvenile boot camp.
Elsewhere, Susan finds herself attracted to Edie's hunky new contractor, and Mama Solis wakes up from her coma - but dies after falling down a flight of stairs.
And Gabrielle is offered a seven-figure negligence settlement sum by the hospital.
Episode 18 - Children Will Listen
Susan's mother pays an unannounced visit to Wisteria Lane after she and her boyfriend call it quits.
Elsewhere, Bree and Rex visit Andrew at boot camp and learn that he might be gay, and Carlos forces Gabrielle to sign a postnuptial agreement and tampers with her birth control.
Plus Lynette and Bree fall out after Bree disciplines Lynette's kids while babysitting.
Episode 19 - Live Alone and Like It
Lynette discovers that no good deed goes unpunished when she momentarily befriends mean Mrs McCluskey.
Susan, still reeling from her break-up with Mike, is mortified when her mother - also newly single - decides to jump start both their love lives.
Gabrielle, short of money, borrows and maxes out John's credit card.
And Bree convinces Andrew to see a minister about his sexuality, and he reveals his plans for his mother.
Episode 20 - Fear No More
Some unwelcome faces resurface in Wisteria Lane.
Gabrielle plans a big party to bid farewell to Carlos, who's off to jail, and Susan and Julie encounter less-than-neighbourly behaviour from the Young family.
Meanwhile, Rex is jealous of Bree and George's continued friendship, and Lynette learns that Tom is working with his ex-grilfriend Annabel.
And Susan's kitchen catches fire - and she blames Paul as the arsonist.
Episode 21 - Desperate Housewives
George Williams continues to worm his way into Bree's life.
Lynette tries to spice things up with Tom who, she fears, is losing interest in her, while Gabrielle's latest man troubles grow even more complicated.
Susan's mother moves out after being proposed to, and Susan learns that Mike is innocent.
Meanwhile, Gabrielle tells John he could be the father of her baby, and Edie spies on Bree and George having dinner together.
Episode 22 - Goodbye for Now
Susan makes a decision about Mike Delfino and Lynette takes steps to make sure Annabel doesn't come between her and Tom
Episode 23 - One Wonderful Day
The housewives have a new neighbour: strict disciplinarian Betty Applewhite, and Mary Alice's reason for suicide is finally revealed.
Rex dies of a heart attack, wondering whether Bree poisoned him. Carlos goes to prison after attacking John when he learned he was having an affair with Gabrielle.
Lynette goes back to work as Tom decides to be a stay-at-home dad. Susan is held at gunpoint by Zach, who wants to kill Mike.
Andrew Van de Kamp has a fight with Justin, who he had been experimenting with sexually, and the past comes back to haunt Wisteria Lane.
Desperate Housewives synopsis
Dark comedy drama exploring the complicated reality behind the apparent domestic bliss of a group of housewives in a fictitious American suburbEpisode Guide >
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Paul Young stands in Susan's way. Lynette is furious with Tom when he passes up a lucrative job offer so that he can carry on working with Carlos.