Desperate Housewives

Pilot

Season 1, Ep 1, Aired 10/3/04
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  • Episode Description
  • One day, in the loveliest of suburbs, housewife and mother Mary Alice Young (Brenda Strong) decides to take her own life. Now, from her elevated state of P.O.V., Mary Alice introduces us to the lives of her friends, neighbors and family members living in the idyllic Wisteria Lane, a street where the lawns are green, the houses are pretty, the people are nice and the secrets are deadly. Her circle of girlfriends, who are taken by surprise by her mysterious suicide, includes: Susan Mayer (Teri Hatcher), a known klutz and hopeless romantic who's gone through a bitter divorce, and is now playing the part of single mom to her precocious daughter Julie (Andrea Bowen) and also happens to be looking for love, finding it in the heart of the hunky new plumber neighbor, Mike Delfino (James Denton) - but in order to win him over, she'll have to rival the street's notorious slut, Edie Britt (Nicollette Sheridan); Lynette Scavo (Felicity Huffman), formerly a successful businesswoman in the marketing world, now a stay-at-home mom taking care of four rebellious kids, while her husband, Tom (Doug Savant), is out working all the time; Bree Van de Kamp, often deemed "Martha Stewart-on-steroids", a perfectionist home fairy whose immaculate lifestyle drives her children Andrew (Shawn Pyfrom) and Danielle (Joy Lauren) to treat her with disdain, and her husband Rex (Steven Culp) to want a divorce; and Gabrielle Solis (Eva Longoria), a former top model turned trophy wife who becomes tired of life in the suburbs after marrying a businessman, Carlos (Ricardo Antonio Chavira), and thus engages in an affair with her 17-year-old gardener John Rowland (Jesse Metcalfe). Then there's Mary Alice's family: her peculiar son Zach (Cody Kasch), who tries to figure out why his mom would abandon him the way she did, and her husband Paul (Mark Moses), who tries to keep the truth under wraps. In death, Mary Alice knows more than she ever could in life, and she is willing to share with us, week after week, the juicy details of the lives of people she holds dear, and the secrets they try to hide behind closed doors. And we welcome them all with watery mouths.moreless

  • Cast & Crew
  • Brent Kinsman

    Preston Scavo

  • Teri Hatcher

    Susan Mayer

  • Felicity Huffman

    Lynette Scavo

  • Shane Kinsman

    Porter Scavo

  • Zane Huett

    Parker Scavo

  • Fan Reviews (33)
  • A solid start to an enlightening journey.

    By Kadodian, Jul 08, 2014

  • About this episode

    By JordanWelch, Jun 07, 2013

  • This in not a pilot, this is THE PILOT.

    By alenerina, Aug 23, 2012

  • A great start to a great show!

    By mmvd, Jan 02, 2012

  • Pilot

    By danny7277, Jun 05, 2011

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (29)

    • Mary Alice: (closing voiceover) And suddenly there he was (referring to Mike). Like a phoenix rising from the ashes. And just like that, Susan was happy. Life was suddenly full of possibilities. Not to mention a few unexpected surprises. The next day my friends came together to pack away my clothes, my personal belongings and what was left of my life. Not quite, Gabrielle, not quite. How ironic to have something I tried so desperately to keep secret treated so casually. I'm so sorry, girls, I never wanted you to be burdened with this.

    • Mary Alice: (about Edie) Susan had met the enemy, and she was a slut.

    • Rex: I can't believe you tried to kill me. Bree: Yes, well, I feel badly about that.

    • Mary Alice: My name is Mary Alice Young. When you read this morning’s paper you may come across an article about the unusual day I had last week. Normally there is never anything newsworthy about my life, but that all changed last Thursday. Of course everything seemed quite normal at first. I made breakfast for my family, I performed my chores, I completed my projects, I ran my errands. In truth, I spent the day as I spent every other day, quietly polishing the routine of my life, until it gleamed with perfection. That’s why it was so astonishing when I decided to go to my hallway closet and retrieve a revolver that had never been used.

    • Gabrielle: This table is hand carved, Carlos had it imported from Italy. It cost him $22 000. John: So, you wanna do it on the table this time? Gabrielle: Absolutely.

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    Notes (29)

    • The opening credits were cut for the series premiere. They would first appear in the following episode.

    • In this episode the characters pronounce Susan's last name "Meyer". However, in the rest of the series her name is pronounced "Mayer". This is due to the fact that during the shooting of the pilot, Susan's character's last name was supposed to be Meyer. It was later changed to Mayer.

    • International Titles: Canada: Beautés déséspérées Italy: Desperate Housewives - I segreti di Wisteria Lane Japan: Desuparêto na tsuma tachi Mexico: Esposas desesperadas Norway: Frustrerte fruer Poland: Gotowe na wszystko Croatia: Kućanice Serbia: Očajne domaćice Estonia: Meeleheitel koduperenaised Spain: Mujeres desesperadas Portugal: Donas de Casa Desesperadas Greece: Noikokyres se apognosi Hungary: Született feleségek Finland: Täydelliset naiset Macedonia: Ocajni domakinki Switzerland/Austria - Schmutzige Wäsche

    • Marc Cherry received a 2005 Emmy nomination for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for his work on this episode.

    • Charles McDougall won the 2005 Emmy for Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series for his work on this episode.

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    Trivia (15)

    • Goof: When Bree waters the flowers in the bathroom of the hospital, there is the shadow of the camera man visible behind her.

    • Goof: When Susan sits on Edie's couch, just after she throws the bra behind her and knocks the candles over, a crew member in blue jeans can briefly be seen moving on the floor behind the couch to the right.

    • The envelope that Mary Alice's blackmail note came in says Secretsville, USA instead of Fairview.

    • In this episode Mary Alice says she died on a Thursday, however on her tombstone, which is seen in the episode after it says she died on September 26th 2004. This date is a Sunday.

    • Mike's door is made of brown wood, but in later episodes it is white and has a screen door.

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    Allusions (2)

    • Edie's welcome gift is a dish of Sausage Puttenesca. Puttenesca is an Italian word that resembles 'prostitute'. Folklore has it that in Naples prostitutes used to make a pasta sauce that required little or no cooking and used their dishes as one more way of appealing to potential customers. The fact that Edie is bringing this dish is an allusion to her reputation.

    • Andrew: "You're the one with the problem, all right. You're the one who's acting she's running for mayor of Stepford." Bree Van De Kamp is described as "the perfect mother." Her son then makes a remark about Stepford. This is most likely a reference to the movie(s), The Stepford Wives (1975) (starring Katharine Ross) or the recent remake, The Stepford Wives (2004) (starring Nicole Kidman). The women living in the town of Stepford are too perfect à la Bree, and turn out to be robots.

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