Previously, someone strangled Julie, and then the coffeeshop girl, scaring the neighborhood. Lynette got rid of gold digger Irina, then Eddie killed her, revealing himself as the Wisteria Strangler. Now, Mary Alice's voiceover tells us there is a house in Fairview, with a monster living in it who kills young women. "You may ask how such a monster came to be. And that's a very good question, indeed." Eddie peers out the window as his mother, a haggard-looking Diane Farr, tells him she needs more Scotch. He says he'll get her some, and rubs her shoulder reassuringly, but she thinks there's some in his room. So, when he leaves to help Lynette with her car and pick up the Scotch, she tears apart his room looking for booze, but she finds his scrapbook of killings, ending with an article about Julie's attack. Title card.
MAVO picks back up as Mary Alice is running. In the flesh. She explains how she met Eddie when he was four. She stops her run to talk to Eddie in his front yard, then ends up watching his mom and dad fight, as the dad says he never wanted a kid and is leaving. Mary Alice interrupts and tells them they don't want to talk like this in front of their kid. Diane Farr (not yet haggard), whose name is Barbara, begs him not to leave her "alone," then calls Eddie to her after he leaves. Mary Alice shows up a few days later to check in, with a pot of homemade mac and cheese. Barbara reluctantly lets Mary Alice in, and they talk about her sad life: She's all alone with a four-year-old to raise, hates her mother, has no friends and probably won't find a new boyfriend, either. Mary Alice tells her she'll find love; she just has to look for it. Eddie sweetly tells Mary Alice goodbye. Barbara looks at her son with disdain.
Mary Alice rings the door again a few days later, bearing a teddy bear. No one answers, but Eddie's in the window. He says he's not supposed to open the door, because his mom's gone and he doesn't have a sitter. Mary Alice asks where his mother is, and next thing we know, she shows up at a bar where Sheryl Crow's playing and Barbara's tramping it up with some trashy drunk. Mary Alice lectures Barbara, and reveals to the trashy drunk that Barbara's a mother. Mary Alice hauls Barbara's ass home, where Barbara makes excuses for leaving him alone. She knows how wrong it is, and she promises Mary Alice she'll never do anything like this again. But she does really need a man. I'm not sure why that's so awkward for Mary Alice, but she leaves right at that moment. First, though, she tells Barbara to always put her child's need first; that's what being a mother is. Barbara agrees, and when Mary Alice leaves, she hugs Eddie and says, "Oh, Eddie. It's not your fault you ruined my life." Not exactly what Mary Alice meant by putting his needs first.