Desperate Housewives
Season 1, Episode 2
Air date October 10, 2004
Written by Marc Cherry
Directed by Larry Shaw
Episode Guide
"Pretty Little Picture"

"Ah, But Underneath" was the 2nd episode of Season 1. It originally aired in the United States on Sunday, October 10, 2004.

Guest Starring Edit

Main Plot Points Edit

  • The four ladies discuss whether Paul should know about the letter.
  • Bree and Rex attend counselling in a desperate attempt to save their marriage.
  • Susan makes her move on Mike but things don't go quite as she had planned.
  • Lynette uses a new technique to get her children to behave, with surprising results.
  • Edie and Mrs. Huber find a piece of evidence in the wreckage of Edie's home: a measuring cup.
  • Gabrielle tells John that their affair cannot continue in Gaby and Carlos' house any longer.
  • Paul Young throws a toy chest into the river.

Synopsis Edit

"An odd thing happens when we die. Our senses vanish. Taste, touch, smell and sound become a distant memory. But our sight, ah our sight expands. And we can suddenly see the world we left behind so clearly. Of course most of what's visible to the dead could also be seen by the living if they'd only take the time to look.

Like my friend Gabrielle. I should have seen how unhappy she was but I didn't. I only saw her clothes from Paris, and her platinum jewelry, and her brand new diamond watch. Had I looked closer I'd have seen that Gabrielle was a drowning woman desperately in search of a life raft. Luckily for her she found one."

She is in the hot tub with John.

"Of course Gabrielle only saw her young gardener as a way to infuse her life with a little excitement. But now she is about to discover just how exciting her life could get."

Carlos returns home earlier then they thought. They are out of the bath tub and they are still kissing but she hears as he closes the door of his car. She starts to panic and she wants to throw John out of the house. They pick stuff that they left while they were taking them off. She tells John to go out the window. Carlos picks up mail and sees gardening tools. He comes to the house and tells her that his meeting got cancelled. She notices John's pants on the sofa. She puts some pillows over it. Carlos asks where John is.

"Gabrielle was panicked. She knew if her husband discovered her secret she would feel the full force of his wrath." John is taking care of the bushes in front of the window and says hello to Carlos. "But she was quickly reminded that what Carlos couldn't see couldn't hurt her." John is naked from waist to foot.

"The peaceful façade of Wisteria Lane had recently been shattered first by my suicide and then by the discovery of a note among my belongings that suggested a suspicious reason for my desperate act. My friends gathered to discuss its implications. "

Lynette, Bree, Gabrielle and Susan are all at Susan's place. Susan thinks that they should give it to Paul but Gabrielle tells him that it is too early. Susan thinks that he needs to know everything. Bree wants to tell him that over a coffee and Gabrielle thinks that they should always call the police. Lynette thinks that it was a joke but everyone else thinks that it is a serious thing. Susan wants to find out what that was all about and Lynette thinks that it is better to stay in the dark. Bree just asks them how much do they really want to know about the neighbors.

"My friends were right to be concerned. They knew that every family has its secret and as my son and husband could have told them you need to think carefully before digging them up. "

Paul dug a hole to the bottom of the waterless pool. Zack stands over the hole while Paul brings a big toy chest to the garage.

"After talking for hours my friends still hadn't agreed on what to do with the note. So they decided to talk about it in the morning after a good night's rest. But no one could fall asleep that night. They each kept thinking of my suicide and how terribly alone I must have felt. You see, loneliness was something my friends understood all too well."

Bree is all alone in her bedroom and goes to the living room where Rex is sleeping. He is awake and she asks him if he remembers the night when he proposed to her. She tells him that they were drinking a bottle of apple wine and when they finished he said: "If you merry me Bree Mason I promise to love you for the rest of my life". Even though she was engaged to someone else and even though her father didn't like him she accepted. She tells him to cancel the divorce lawyer and to go to the counseling. He agrees with that.

"Susan awoke that night alone and parched but as she gazed out her window she saw the tall drink of water she needed to quench (Mike) her thirst."

Julie tells her to ask him out but she is hoping that he will ask her out first. Julie should be making some cookies but she can't find the measuring cup. Susan left the measuring cup at Edie's house when it burnt down. Susan tells her to keep looking.

Carlos comes to the bedroom and Gabrielle is mad at him. She tells him that she didn't merry him so she could have dinner alone six times a week. He bought her an expensive gift. He wants to have sex but she is not in the mood. She tells him that they can talk. He tells her that when a men buys a lady an expensive jewelry he expects something more then just talking. She throws the jewelry box at him. He tells her that it was a joke. He tells her that she has been acting like nightmare for months and he can't fix it unless she tells him. She tells him that it is not exciting any more. She tells him to be the way he used to be to take her breath away.

It is the morning and Susan went out to throw the garbage. Mike is out there but she just rolled out of bed with no make up and she is completely embarrassed. She turns around to say hello to him and Bongo, Mike's dog, starts to bark. She asks him if he'd like to have dinner with her. She tells him that she is throwing a welcome home cook meal to all the new people who move to the neighborhood. Mike tells her that she said she is the lousy cook. She is completely now confused and he tells her to come over to his place and he will cook for her and Julie. Susan tells Julie about that but she tells her that she won't go because she will get sick and she will need a bed rest.

"Julie was glad Susan was rekindling her love life. Of course she was unaware of her mother's recent track record with fire."

Edie and Martha Huber pick up what is left of her house. Martha tells her that she found old cloths from people for her to wear until she gets back on her feet. Edie tells her that there is a problem with insurance and she needs to stay with Martha for few more weeks. Martha finds something that can be used again, a measuring cup. Edie tells her that that is not hers. Martha asks how did it get here and Edie doesn't care but Martha does.

"Dr. Albert Goldfine was the most accomplished marriage counselor in the city. He had dealt with problems ranging from substance abuse to infidelity to domestic violence. Yes Dr. Goldfine thought he had seen it all and then he met the Van de Kamps." Bree and Rex arrive for their session and she brought him homemade potpourri.

Lynette is driving her kids but they are out of control and they won't buckle up. Police officer gives her a sign to stop. He tells her that kids should be buckled up. She tells him that she yelled at them but they just won't listen. He tells her that she needs to find a way to control them because that is her job.

"Though he'd been a policeman for six years officer Hayes had never found himself in a truly dangerous situation. Then again, he had never before told a woman how to raise her children."

Lynette goes out of the car and starts slowly to go towards the police officer. She tells him that her husband is always away because of the work she has no help she didn't sleep through entire night for six years. Officer is completely scared and tells her that she will only give her a warning. Lynette accepted the apology. She returns to the car and buckles up but kids simply won't.

Gabrielle waits for John's mother to leave and she goes to his place. She goes to his room and talks with him. She tells him that when comes gardening he may actually do the gardening. John thinks that she is breaking up with him but she tells him that lately he had been the only thing that has been keeping her going. She tells him that they won't be able to have sex at her house anymore and they end up having sex in John's bedroom.

Bree is talking with the counselor. She just finished telling him about her family. Albert tells her that she has been just talking about the unimportant things. Rex has been very clear about his issues and she didn't tell anything about her feeling. Rex tells him that he doesn't know if she has any. She notices the button on Albert's suit that is not on it's place and she already has a needle and appropriate tools in her bag. Albert asks her if it is true that she does housework as a way to distract her emotionally. She says that it is completely not true and returns the tools in the bag.

John and Gabrielle just finished having sex. John gives her a rose but it is not just any rose it is perfect just like Gabrielle.

"The truth hit her like a thunderbolt. For John, this was no longer a meaningless little affair. Gabrielle could now clearly see he was falling in love with her."

Mike bought the ingredients for the dinner and Susan helps him with the bags. He tells her that they are having steak because Julie told him it is his favorite. Edie is passing by and stops to say hello. Mike tells her that they are having a traditional welcome to the neighborhood dinner. Edie says that she never had one. She walks to them and Mike tells her that they are not having anything fancy just an ordinary dinner. "Susan suddenly had an awful feeling in the pit of her stomach. As if she was watching the accident in slow motion. She knew it would happen but was powerless to stop it."

Susan needs to invite Edie to party. She tells that she doesn't want to intrude and Mike says that she is bringing Julie over and Edie will come and says to Susan that this will make up for the dinner she never threw her.

Lynette brought some of the old stuff for Edie to Martha. Lynette needs to finish dinner and Martha asks her why the policeman pulled her over. She tells to Martha that nothing works and that she is just desperate. Martha tells her that her mother had the worst time with her in the car and once she pulled over and threw her out of the car and walked away. She returned after couple of minutes but she never behaved in the car.

Martha asks Susan if she found any clothes for Edie because she has nothing to wear and Susan tells her that she always thought that Edie had that

Susan sees Zack and then takes a look at the note that was in her pocket. She goes to Zack and asks where his father is. He is in the garage covering the toy chest in plastic. She asks him how he is doing and he tells her that Mary Alice abandoned him and her son and he will never forgive her. He put the chest in the trunk of his car and goes away.

"As I watched Susan I couldn't help feeling sorry for her. She wanted so much to know why I did it. Why I killed myself. It's not enough to want the truth. You must know where to look for it. And the truth is elusive because it knows where to hide."

Paul threw the toy chest into the lake and it sank to the bottom.

Martha Huber came to Susan's house for old clothes but Susan isn't home and Julie goes upstairs to see if Susan found anything. Martha then goes into the house and looks inside of the bags from supermarket and finds a measuring cup. Julie comes back and says that Susan didn't leave anything and Martha said that she found everything she needed.

Albert tells Bree that Rex won't be able to join on their session because of the emergency at the hospital. Albert asks her if she'd like to talk to him without Rex. She again notices the button but tells him that she has other things to attend to. She tries to leave but she can't. She goes to Albert and tells him to take off his coat.

Gabrielle and Susan are at the Gabrielle's house and they returned from shopping. Gabrielle tells her to be at Mike's house earlier so she can spend some time alone. Susan goes away and notices the rose. She asks who gave it to her and Gabrielle tells her that John gave it to her. Susan asks her why would John give her rose and she tells her that he gave her as an example of the new bush she is planning to take for her garden.

Bree is sewing up a button for Albert and they talk about Freud. Bree thinks that he is a miserable human being. His mother worked from sunup till sundown. There were no appliances back then she had to do everything by herself. And later he had a theory that the problems of most adults are caused because of what their mother had done in the childhood. Bree took care of his coat and Albert tells her that many of Freud's theory have been discredited.

Lynette can't keep her boys under control and now they are whispering about something they want to do to her.

"For the first time Lynette could see that this was not the innocent play for children. She was being challenged. So she decided it was time to get creative."

Lynette stops by the side of the road and tells them to go out. They go out and she drives off. She stops by the corner and waits for the couple of seconds but when she returns they are not there. She starts to panic and starts to call for them.

One lady goes out of the house and tells her that they are in her kitchen. She tells her that she saw her abandoning them by the side of the road and that she probably has some anger management issues and that she needs a therapist to talk to. Lynette calls for kids and they come out. She tells them to go into the car but lady won't allow it. One of the twins bites her leg and the other one pushes her and she felt down. Lynette tells them to run into the car and when they are all in the car they all buckle up.

Gabrielle is looking at the rose but she hears a horn from a car. She goes outside and finds out that Carlos bought her a sweet convertible car. He asks her if he took her breath away and she says absolutely. He also asks if that is the best gift she ever got.

"Gabrielle could see what this gesture had cost Carlos, so she responded the only way she knew how. She had a feeling the truth would have been lost on her husband anyway. After all, it's the rare man who understands the value of a single perfect rose."

John looks at Gabrielle while she is kissing with Carlos.

Susan goes to Mike place. Bongo is outside the house but she manages to evade him. Mike is surprised to see her and she tells him that she came earlier so she can help him set up but Edie is already there. Bongo is barking at Susan and Mike doesn't know why. Edie goes to Bongo and he seems to like her and he is completely calmed.

"In the distance Susan thought she heard a bell ring. Round one had started."

Bree and Rex are at the counseling. Rex says that Bree screwed up the marriage and he had been a perfect husband. Albert asks him if he sees the benefits of living with Bree. He always has clean clothes and everything looks perfect on him. Did he ever said thank you. Rex has no comment.

Susan, Julie, Edie and Mike are having dinner at Mike's house.

They are talking about the neighborhood and about Mr. Mullen who lives across Martha Huber. Edie asks if his brother was Susan divorce attorney. Susan tells her that he was. Edie tells her that she will be back with Karl because she will never find chemistry with another men like that.

"It was everything Susan could do to keep a smile on her face. Round two was underway and she was already taking a beating. What Edie hadn't counted on was Susan had someone else in corner."

Julie tells Edie that she always liked Mr. Authwell her forth husband. Edie tells her that she has been married only twice. Julie mentions a tattooed guy that they took away in handcuffs. Susan tells her that Edie wasn't married to Javier.

Edie takes a part of her steak and shows to Mike what she had learnt Bongo.

"Susan was furious with Edie for using a dog to ingratiate herself with his owner. She was also furious at Mike for not seeing through this blatant maneuver. But mostly she was furious at herself for not having thought of it first."

Susan is in the kitchen to grab a desserts and she puts sauce on her hand and behind her ear. She gets her hand close to Bongo and he starts to lick her. Mike is pleased to see that Bongo finally likes Susan. Bongo starts to lick her behind her ear but then suddenly starts to choke. He swallowed Susan earring.

Mike gets him to the vet. Edie will stay in the house and clean everything up.

Mike is at the vet station and Susan comes to see how everything turned out. He won't need the surgery and he will be back home in an hour. Mike tells her that Bongo is his late wife's god and she asked Mike if he will take good care of him once she is gone.

"And just like that, Susan could suddenly see something she'd never seen before. Mike Delfino was still in love with his late wife and she knew right then neither she nor Edie would be laying claim to his heart anytime soon. So she decided for now she could settle for just being his friend."

Edie is cleaning up the place and she opens a shelf in the kitchen. The other side of the shelf she didn't see is full of money with gun and there is a map of Wisteria Lane with all the information about the residents of this suburb.

"Yes. As I look back at the world I left behind it's all so clear to me, the beauty that waits to be unveiled, the mysteries that long to be uncovered but people so rarely stop to take a look. They just keep moving. It's a shame really there is so much to see."

The toy chest Paul dumped into the lake rises to the surface.

Quotes: Edit

Mary Alice: "An odd thing happens when we die. Our senses vanish. Taste, touch, smell, and sound become a distant memory. But our sight. Ah. Our sight expands. And we can suddenly see the world we left behind so clearly. Of course, most of what's visible to the dead can also be seen by the living. If they only take the time to look."

Susan: "It doesn't matter. She was his wife. He deserves to have all the facts." Bree: "Well, we could do it gently. We could tell him about it over coffee and pastry." Lynette: "That'll be fun. 'Paul, we have proof your wife killed herself over some deep, dark, secret. Another bear claw?'"

Bree: "Do you remember when you proposed?" Rex: "For God's sake." Bree: "We sat on Skyline Drive and drank a bottle of apple wine and when we finished it, you turned to me and you said, 'If you marry me, Bree Mason, I promise to love you for the rest of my life.' And even though I was engaged to Ty Grant, and even though my father didn't like you, I said yes." Rex: "That was a long time ago." Bree: "You are going to cancel the meeting with that divorce lawyer and we are going to find ourselves a marriage counselor." Rex: "Bree!" Bree: "You promised." Rex: "All right." Bree: "Good. I'm gonna go, uh, make myself some warm milk. Would you like something to drink?" Rex: "Anything but apple wine."

Julie: "Dear Diary. Mike doesn't even know I'm alive." Susan: "Shut up." Julie: "If you want to date him, you're gonna have to ask him out.' Susan: "I keep hoping he'll ask me out." Julie: "How's that going?" Susan: "Shouldn't you be making brownies for your nerdy friends?"

Carlos: "Don't be that way. I got you a gift." Gabrielle: "Nope. No, no, no, no. You're not gonna buy your way out of this one. Carlos: "It's a good gift." Gabrielle: "Is that white gold?" Carlos: "Yeah. Put it on. And then make love to me." Gabrielle: "I'm not in the mood. But, we could stay up and talk." Carlos: "When a man buys a woman expensive jewelry, there are many things he may want in return. For future reference, conversation ain't one of them."

Susan: "Did you want to have dinner with me?" Mike: "Just the two of us? Susan: "Well, and Julie. Uh, it's a thing we do when somebody new moves into the neighborhood, we invite them over for a home-cooked meal. It's sort of a tradition." Mike: "I thought you said you were a lousy cook." Susan: "Well, I order take-out." Mike: "Oh. You invite them over for home-cooking and you give 'em takeout." Susan: "Yeah, it's, it's, uh, it's sort of a new tradition. I'm working out the kinks." Mike: "I'll tell you what. How 'bout I cook. And you guys come over to my place?" Susan: "Oh! Great." Mike: "Friday night at six?" Susan: "I'll be there."

Susan: "Mike Delfino just invited us to dinner Friday night." Julie: "He did? Cool!" Susan: "But only I'm going. Because you're going to come down with something semi-serious that requires bed rest. And fluids."

Edie: "It's all gone. Everything my ex-husband worked for all those years. Gone." Mrs. Huber:"Don't worry about clothing. I already started a collection from people from the neighborhood." Edie: "What? I don't want to wear other people's old crap." Mrs. Huber: "Edie, you can be homeless or you can be ungracious. You really can't afford to be both."

Rex: "The answer is yes. You're about to make a fortune off us."

Cop: "Okay. I'm not gonna give you a ticket. I'm gonna let you off with a warning." Lynette: "I accept your apology."

John: "Ah. This is great. I got tons of homework tonight. It's so easy to concentrate after sex." Gabrielle: "Well, I'm glad I could help. Education is very important."

John: "I was gonna give it to you next time I mowed your lawn, but since you're here." Gabrielle: "Oh, it's a rose!" John: "It's not just any rose. Look at the petals. There aren't any flaws. It's perfect." Gabrielle: "Oh, John." John: "Just like you."

Mike: "Should I have told her we were having steak? She's not like, a vegetarian or something, is she?" Susan: "Oh, no, no. Edie's definitely a carnivore."

Mrs. Huber: "By the way, was that you I saw getting pulled over by a policeman?" Lynette: "Yeah, the boys were acting up in the car. I couldn't get them to sit down." Mrs. Huber: "Young boys can be so willful." Lynette: "I try everything. I scream. I threaten. I reason. I beg. Nothing works. I don't know if it's because they're too young and they don't understand or they're just getting some perverse joy out of testing me." Mrs. Huber: "My mother used to have the worst time with me in the car. So one time when I was acting up, she stopped and left me on the side of the road and she drove off." Lynette: "You're kidding." Mrs. Huber: "Oh, she came back immediately. But I never misbehaved in the car again. You should try that." Lynette: "Mrs. Huber, I could never leave my kids by the side of the road." Mrs. Huber: "When it comes to discipline, sometimes you must be creative. My mother knew that. Smart lady. Of course, she's in a home now. And her mind has just turned to mush."

Mrs. Huber: "Susan! Have you been able to find old clothes for Edie? She has nothing to wear." Susan: "I thought that was the look she was going for." Mrs. Huber: "Oh, Susan. Edie may be trash, but she's still a human being."

Paul:: "I don't care what her reasons were. Maybe she was depressed. Maybe she was bored. It doesn't matter. She abandoned her husband and her son. And I'll never forgive her."

Gabrielle: "So now you're taking Julie on your dinner date with Mike?" Susan: "Yeah, well, if Edie's gonna be there, I'm gonna need emotional support." Gabrielle: "I can't believe she wormed her way into in. How did you let her do that?" Susan: "I don't know. I was gonna take her out at the knees, but it all happened so fast." Gabrielle: "Well, you know what you need to do. You need to get there early, spend a little bit of time with Mike before the little barracuda gets there." Susan: "That's a good idea. Edie will get there at 5:45 which means her breasts will arrive at 5:30, so I should shoot for five."

Dr. Goldfine: "I'm sure Freud would not approve of this." Bree: "Oh, who cares what he thinks. I took psychology in college. We learned all about Freud. A miserable human being." Dr. Goldfine: "What makes you say that?" Bree: "Well, think about it. He grew up in the late 1800s. There were no appliances back then. His mother had to do everything by hand, just backbreaking work from sunup to sundown, not to mention the countless other sacrifices she probably had to make to take care of her family. And what does he do? He grows up and becomes famous, peddling a theory that the problems of most adults can be traced back to something awful their mother has done. She must have felt so betrayed. He saw how hard she worked. He saw what she did for him. Did he even ever think to say thank you? I doubt it." Dr. Goldfine: "Just so you know, many of Freud's theories have been discredited." Bree: "Good."

Lady: "Listen, it seems to me like you have some anger management issues." Lynette: "I have four kids under the age of six. I absolutely have anger management issues."

Julie: "Do you know who I always liked? Mr. Roswell, your fourth husband." Edie: "Oh, he was my second husband. I've only been married twice." Julie: "Twice? You weren't married to the guy with all the tattoos that they took away in handcuffs?" Susan: "No, Julie, she wasn't married to Javier. That was just one of her special friends."

Mary Alice: "Susan was furious with Edie for using a dog to ingratiate herself with its owner. She was also furious with Mike for not seeing through this blatant maneuver. But most of all, she was furious with herself for not having thought of it first."

Mary Alice: "As I look back at the world I left behind, it's all so clear to me. The beauty that waits to be unveiled. The mysteries that long to be uncovered. But people so rarely stop to take a look. They just keep moving. It's a shame, really. There's so much to see."

Trivia Edit

The episode title - Ah, But Underneath - is a song that appears in some versions of the Stephen Sondheim musical, Follies.

edit Season One Episodes Season Two

"Pilot" · "Ah, But Underneath" · "Pretty Little Picture" · "Who's That Woman?" · "Come In, Stranger" · "Running to Stand Still" ·
"Anything You Can Do" · "Guilty" · "Suspicious Minds" · "Come Back to Me" · "Move On" · "Every Day a Little Death" ·
"Your Fault" · "Love is in the Air" · "Impossible" · "The Ladies Who Lunch" · "There Won't Be Trumpets" ·
"Children Will Listen" · "Live Alone and Like It" · "Fear No More" · "Sunday in the Park with George" · "Goodbye for Now" · "One Wonderful Day"

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