Lynette has an interesting experience with Carlos, Susan drops a game-changer on Dave, and Bree makes a sad decision about troubled Orson

By Tanner Stransky
April 27, 2009 at 08:51 PM EDT
Ron Tom/ABC
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After a dear one passes, it can be hard for those left behind to transition back into the rhythms of normal, day-to-day life. The next steps are usually timid and nearly always shaky. That was certainly the case with Desperate Housewives‘ first post-Edie episode last night, which seemed to be gasping to put together disparate story lines in the wake of losing one of its most vivacious main characters.

Sure, there was the continued mourning. The ladies of the lane expressed their concern for new widower Dave Williams. (Not so much because they like him but because they supposedly liked Edie.) In true Housewives fashion, they stopped by to offer their help and drop off casseroles and then gossip about it on his lawn, but the guy, naturally, was drowning his misery in booze and wanted to be left alone. Still, they kept on with it: ”We need to be persistent — we’re good at that!” said Susan comically. Lo and behold, it wasn’t until Mike Delfino visited that we finally glimpsed Dave, who looked pretty torn up, unshaven, and in his pajamas. But Dave wasn’t having the niceties with Mike, of course. Based on Dave’s feelings about Mike — and how he’d planned to ruin Mike’s life not too long ago — I thought there was the slim chance that the whole thing could have ended there. Dave knifing Mike in a post-trauma rage? He’d probably at least get an easier jail sentence.

Since Mike didn’t have any luck comforting Dave, Susan offered to stop by because, you know, Susan is soooo good and soooo not awkward in situations like this. When she was talking to Mike, however, the klutz dropped what seemed like a huge piece of foreshadowing for us viewers. When briefly discussing her own car wreck in the past few years (the one that killed Dave’s first wife and child), Mike ominously reminded her: ”We did what we had to do.” Ohhhh, now things are getting better! Well, at least, I thought they were.

Unfortunately, after a wacky encounter with Dave that saw Susan stealing everything in his house that he could possibly kill himself with (ties, belts, pills, a gun, and knives, for instance), all was revealed about what she meant. And — I’m totally not shocked about this — but the big reveal about ”what they had to do” was, honestly, none too exciting. It turned out that it wasn’t Mike who was driving the car that killed Dave’s family. It was Susan! Bombshell alert!! This is a major game-changer for Desperate‘s mystery!!! Not.

Okay, so I suppose it changes things somewhat. Sure, now the target isn’t exactly Mike. Dave will turn his attention to Susan instead — or, as I predicted early in the season, go after the indomitably cute little M.J., just to ruin Susan’s happiness. But is that really as sordid as ”what we had to do” could have gotten? I thought maybe they were lying about having their brakes checked and that’s what caused the wreck in the first place. Or that they lied about how the wreck actually happened and it was in fact Mike and Susan’s fault. Maybe next week, as this excruciating story line continues to be revealed in tiny bits — it’ll be revealed that Susan was, in fact, drinking and driving or somesuch? That’d be rafter-shaking. Otherwise, why is the switch something Mike and Susan needed to keep secret? People drive without their license all the time. Modern cops have these wondrous things in their cars known as computers that can look up whether you have a valid license. Seriously!

NEXT: Bree turns to AndrewAnyway, the other character with a slight connection to the Edie-death, Dave-crazy story line as Orson. You’ll remember that he had just run out in the street — in front of Edie, who swerved and crashed into the utility pole and was then electrocuted — after he’d encountered a woman wielding a baseball bat while he tried to steal her knick-knacks. We found out that woman was Rose Kemper, who’d suffered a fright after watching the car crash and ended up in a hospital room across the hall from Orson. He’d told the doctors that he’d fallen and hit his head on the curb. At this point, I thought Bree was in on the lie, too. Come to find out later, she wasn’t just playing along. ”Orson’s not exactly the bar-fight type,” she’d told the skeptical doctor, although I thought she was just doing her keeping-up-appearances thing. ”He’s more the raised-voices-at-a-cheese-tasting type.” Alternately, Rose told the story like this: ”It was Death — he came for me!” she recounted to Katherine, who was visiting her. ”But I chased him out…with my baseball bat!” Rose also mentioned that death tried to steal her knick-knacks.

It wasn’t until Katherine recounted the story from the ”dotty” old lady to Bree that the street’s ice queen put together the pieces. Orson didn’t trip and hit a curb — he’d been at Rose Kemper’s house stealing things yet again. Cut to Bree showing up at her son Andrew’s door, ready to end things with her hubby. ”Orson’s lying to me again,” she said, ”so I think I have to divorce him.” I’m sad, but not surprised, to see things dissolve between these two. Orson has been acting like a baby about his inadequacies and the things he feels are injustices, so more power to Bree for doing something about it. She tried with the therapy and all. Another possible target-change for Dave could be a switch to Orson. If he finds out it was Orson who caused Edie’s wreck, he might turn his rage on him instead. Or maybe he’ll just burn down all of Wisteria Lane? Not likely, but Dave seems like he’s nearly at that point.

One cute thing about the Bree-Orson story line was the continued sweet relationship between Bree and Andrew. I enjoyed this exchange:

Bree: ”I did not raise you to be bitchy.”

Andrew: ”No, you raised me to be passive-aggressive. My bitchiness, that was self-taught.” (So true!)

Bree: ”Well, save it for those karaoke parties at Bob and Lee’s — I am not amused.”

They’ve come a long way, these two! From ridiculous fighting and Andrew living on the street, to him now running her business and being her confidant (what will the other ladies think when they find out?!?) about her latest husband.

The story line that really irked me was the tangled one concerning Gaby, Carlos, Lynette, and Tom. I liked that we saw some of the characters interacting in pairs that we don’t normally see — namely, Tom and Gaby going to Garden Club together. (Granted, this started to gear up with their coffee talk a while back, but they’re kind of a fun pair.) The shower story line was just weird and forced. When picking Lynette up for work one day, Carlos rescued her after she fell and became unconscious in the shower. At the same time, Tom met — and flirted with — the town slut, Patty, at Garden Club. And what do you know? Both of them didn’t tell each other about their respective provocative encounters. Cue the fight! No need to even recap because it’s the same old thing that always happen. Misunderstanding, a little public fight where all is embarrassingly revealed, and then the make-up. That’s it. The only thing that’s lingering is the possible connection between Carlos and Lynette that could be brewing. Back at the office after the fracas, Carlos told Lynette: ”Lynette, I saw you without your towel. You got nothing to be embarrassed about.” Love connection? Or at least cheating-on-your-spouse-in-the-office connection? Maybe.

At least the disjointed story line yielded a lot of good lines. But, then again, Gaby’s story lines always do. ”I know I’m new here at the Garden Club, but what’s with all the gardening?” Gaby said on her first meeting. ”I thought this was an excuse to get together for bitchin’ and boozin’!” Or when Gaby was explaining her allegiance to Lynette over Tom, after she threatened to tell Lynette about his flirting with another woman. ”You’re my friend with the small f,” she said. ”My friend with the big F is Lynette!” And, then, as she alluded to Tom’s Garden Club dalliances passive aggressively during dinner: ”I keep telling Tom how dangerous gardens can be,” she said. ”Everywhere you step there are shovels and rakes and hoes.”

Lynette scored with a great line, too, after Tom begged for sex: ”I warn you: I’m just going to lie here, resenting you the whole time, waiting for this hell to be over.” That’s right — Lynette knows how to keep it real!

TV Watchers, what’d you think of the episode? Did you feel like it was uneven after a rather stellar send-off for Edie? How is the revelation going to change Dave’s plans for revenge?

Eva Longoria Parker, Teri Hatcher, Marcia Cross, and Felicity Huffman star in the soap set on the dangerous Wisteria Lane
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