Guest stars (Lainie Kazan, Brian Austin Green) and new series regulars (Vanessa Williams, Mark Moses) abound as we return to Wisteria Lane. Our first new cast addition is actually someone we knew way back when -- and also in last season's finale -- Paul Young, Mary Alice's husband who had been in prison for the wrong murder. MAVO sets up his appearance by reminding us all about his time on the first season. Then she reminds us that no one cared about him, so he's obviously moving back for revenge. If we doubted that, his visit to Felicia Tilman in jail (she's the one who framed him because he actually killed her sister, but we'll get back to that in the weecap). Anyway, she threatens him and accuses him, and he does end up mouthing his admittance to murder. But she tells her cellmate not to worry: He'll be dead within six months, since she has friends on Wisteria and he does not.
Also new to the lane is Vanessa Williams, who's at her evil best (okay, maybe not best, since obviously there is no better evil than Wilhelmina Slater) as Lynette's college friend, Renee, now married to a fake New York Yankee. Basically, she teases Lynette for being poor and looking old, and Lynette teases back that she's slept her way to where she is and has had nine facelifts. Don't try to understand it; none of Lynette's Wisteria friends do, either. But, because she's Lynette's friend, she quickly joins the group (which comes in handy with Dana Delaney getting her own show), where she's sure to stir things up.
Our guest stars this week appear to be setting up recurring roles: Lainie Kazan plays Susan's landlord and apparently soon-to-be boss. She offers Susan a job at the beginning of the episode wearing next to nothing on a webcam. Susan is too PROUD! And INDIGNANT! And too busy making ugly jewelry she thinks she'll be able to sell. So she rebuffs Lainie's job offer. Until Mike is denied a loan and says he'll have to move to Alaska to work on an oil rig for six months or a year. Susan's back at Lainie's with her clothes off quicker than you can say, "Why is Teri Hatcher always getting naked?"
And then there's Brian Austin Green, who shows up at the very end to help Bree with her latest "project" -- the one to get over Orson, who's already moved on to his physical therapist. (And Kyle MacLachlan's been downgraded to guest star, so they might not get back together anytime soon.) This project is replacing all of the wall coverings in her entire house, after she ripped them off in her attempt at a quiet moment with her thoughts. But, after Bree finds out Orson's moved on, Brian Austin's suddenly looking very appealing.
The show also answers the mysterious question left hanging last season: The baby swapped at birth was Juanita (not MJ, as I was so sure of). The hospital executive who lives on Wisteria is charged with telling them, but he only fills Carlos in. Carlos is devastated, and thinks Gaby will be even more, so he tells the hospital if they don't make this go away, he'll sue them for $10 million or $20 million. Because karma can't be on either Solis's side more than other, Gaby's also keeping a secret: Bree tells her Andrew's the one who ran over the original Juanita, Carlos' mother, and she can't bring herself to tell Carlos. The problem is, it's not even fun to hope for these big dramatic reveals, since they're both legitimately heartbreaking. At least we have the rest of the show reveling in the soapiness.
Previously: Andrew ran over Carlos's mom and they never told. When Bree finally told Orson, he realized he couldn't love her anymore and left her. So Bree decided to tell Gaby. A dying nurse told a priest that she switched some babies at birth, so the hospital's trying to figure out how to tell the Wisteria Lane parents that their child isn't theirs. Susan and Mike had to move out of their house to save money, and Paul Young became the renter (unknown to Susan or anyone else). Mary Alice's voiceover begins with even more previouslies as she explains Paul's history: They were happily married once, until Mary Alice got that letter she killed herself over. Paul found out Martha Huber wrote the letter, so he killed her. Her sister, Felicia Tilman, figured him out and almost an entire season later, framed him for her own murder (by cutting off her own fingers with a knife; there's no end to the crazy on this show), so he went off to the slammer.
Now out of previously mode, MAVO fills us in: Felicia was pulled over for speeding years later, with no ID, and that's how people found out she was alive. So, she goes to jail and Paul Young is freed. He makes small talk with his lawyer about how he wants to return home to Wisteria, even though no one came to his trial or believed he was innocent. He's out for revenge, folks. And when Mrs. McCluskey sees him on Susan's porch, she drops her groceries as he grins at her, menacingly. MAVO sets up the episode's theme -- bad news -- with all the ways it can be delivered: phone, mail, email, text. But some is so bad it has to be delivered in person. For example: The guy at the hospital who lives on Wisteria has to deliver the news to the family whose baby was switched at birth in person.
And, on the lane, Mrs. McCluskey's spreading the news far and wide (and to people we don't care about) that Paul's back. As she's doing this, Gaby and Bree are having their heart to heart at Gaby's. Bree delivers the bad news: She knows who ran Carlos's mother over with a car. She says it was Andrew, and Gaby just about throws up all over Bree. But not because she's pissed that he did it; she's just pissed that Bree would tell her, because now she'll have to tell Carlos, who will go to prison for killing Andrew. Bree explains that Orson told her she was horrible for not telling, and Gaby's all, "That's why you told me? Oh please, we're all horrible people!" For instance, Gaby steals Bree's magazines. Uh, yeah, Gaby? Not the same. Bree says that Orson's leaving her, but Gaby doesn't give a crap right now. She's too busy crying that Carlos is probably going to find a way to blame her. They hug and comfort each other until Mrs. McCluskey bangs on the door: "You'll never guess who's back!"
At the Scavo home, everyone's demanding stuff from Lynette: Dry cleaning, meals, you name it. She also has a baby in her arms, so she tells them all to check their own hands and if they're not holding a baby they can take care of themselves. Tom can't believe she's not going to help with anything, but she says now that she's had an entire basketball team, she doesn't care. Amid all of this chaos, Lynette's rich college friend, Renee Perry, who's married to a New York Yankee, calls. Tom think this will be perfect, because Renee usually flies Lynette off to New York for a fun time. But Lynette gets off the phone and says Renee's coming here, so they all have to clean like hell so her friend doesn't know she lives like this. Penny wonders if her friend won't like her no matter what, and Lynette says Renee's "not that kind of a friend." A knock at the door reveals Bree, Gaby, and Mrs. McCluskey ready to spread the news to Lynette.
At Mike and Susan's new, dingy apartment, MJ asks them if they're poor. Susan says they're not ("poor people wish they could live like this"), but MJ's not buying it. Mike says they're here so they can save up to move back into their old house: Mike's going to work a bunch, Susan's going to teach and sell "that really cool jewelry" she's been making. MJ, already a fashion critic, "Oh, god." Then the phone rings; it's Mrs. McCluskey telling her Paul Young is back. Susan pulls up to find all four of the ladies waiting in front of her house. She asks where he is, and Gaby's like, "Where do you think? He's in the house you rented to him." Susan says she didn't know it was him, and didn't ask Lee who the guy was they were renting to. Though it might seem hard to believe someone would be this stupid, it's not hard to believe when that someone is Susan, so I'll buy this. Bree calls Paul a maniac, but he's behind her hearing it all. He invites them inside to hear the story.
Inside, Bree's shocked: "Felicia Tilman's alive?!" Paul says he said that repeatedly at his trial. But, oh, right, they weren't there. So he thought he'd explain it when they came to visit him in prison. But, oh, again: They didn't visit. Gaby says their defense is they thought he was a cold-blooded killer. He tells them he had to get back to Wisteria to see his friends. With an evil grin, of course. They discuss how creepy he is on their way out. As they stand by Susan's car and talk, the guy from the hospital looks at the ladies with the weight of the world on his shoulders. But, of course, we don't know who he's looking at quite yet. He gets out of the car and starts to walk toward them, when a clean-shaven Carlos calls out to him, "Jack!" He makes neighborly small talk about the golf club he borrowed until Jack tells him he needs to talk to Carlos and his wife. Carlos beckons Gaby, but she tells him it'll be a minute. Carlos pressures Jack to tell him what's up, so they go inside. We cut to there later, where Carlos is freaking out because he's spent eight years loving someone else's child. When Jack says they haven't found the biological Solis child yet, Carlos says they're not telling Gaby that Juanita's not theirs until they've tracked the other family down. Jack says he has a legal responsibility to tell her, so Carlos says he'll do it. He looks outside at her laughing with her friends and softly says he doesn't know how, because this will destroy her. This is a little serious and heavy for Carlos and Gaby, but I don't mind Eva Longoria Parker and Ricardo Chavira getting a chance to show their acting chops.
Lynette has her whole family dressed up and posing on the porch when a limo arrives. And out steps one Vanessa Williams, of course. She takes a phone call just as Lynette tries to hug her. And then she takes another call. Lynette grabs the phone and hangs it up, so they can finally hug. Lynette shows off the family to Renee and, you know Murphy's Law: Right as she says how blessed she's been, the baby throws up all over her chest. Tom heads off to work as Renee tells Lynette how cozy and intimate her house is. Lynette asks Renee if she sees her servants on whipping day. Renee says more people should live like Lynette, and Lynette points out that most people do. Porter and Preston are impressed that Renee gets to hang out with the Yankees and fly on their private jet. But Renee says she really wants to live more like this. Turns out she hasn't booked a hotel yet, so Parker invites her to stay. Lynette tries to dissuade her, but Renee wants to stay on the sleeper sofa. Then she tells Lynette how old she looks. Nice.
Susan knocks on Lainie Kazan's door. Turns out she's Maxine, the landlord. Susan's finally paying some late deposit or something, so Maxine invites her in. She hears out all of Susan's money problems and says she knows how Susan feels because her husband died and she