On Sunday's episode of Desperate Housewives, Mary Alice tells us that it's in our nature to judge. Bree has to defend her infidelity when a judgmental on-looker discovers her affair with Karl. Roy judges the way Lynette treats Tom. Everyone (rightly?) judges Gaby's parenting skills. And Susan and Katherine's already-tiresome catfight over Mike reaches a fever pitch when Danny makes a major misstep, and Angie appeals to Katherine's questionable judgment in order to cover his tracks.
When a playmate of Juanita's hurts herself while visiting, Gaby's parenting skills are called into question. Get out of here - Gabrielle Solis is a paragon of motherhood! She doesn't allow her kids to sled down the stairs in the good suitcase, does she? Nevertheless, the mommy grapevine kicks into gear, and kids start sending their regrets to Juanita's birthday party.
This sends Gaby into overdrive, booking a clown, a bouncy house and a monkey to tempt the kiddies. While it's initially a scene straight out of any given Saturday at Neverland (too soon?), naturally, Gaby's efforts backfire. The monkey gets tired, and in a sudden blur of fake yellow hair, poor Koko the Clown is flat on his back on a stretcher, the victim of a birthday-party monkey attack. The lesson here? Gaby is a terrible mother.
Karen asks Lynette to hire Roy to be their handyman so he can have some "walking-around" money. But Roy is from another generation, so he looks to Tom for all his direction, seeing as he's the man of the house.
Anyone who's been paying attention knows that Lynette is a big fan of pantsuits, and she wears them around the house a lot, if you know what I'm saying. This bothers Roy, who thinks that Lynette is emasculating Tom. "Just because you like crunching his walnuts doesn't mean I do," he says. She fires him on the spot.
In the end, Tom talks to Roy and explains that Lynette's dad left and her mom's a drinker, so she had to be the one in control of everything. Tom lets her control him because it makes her feel safe. Aw. Roy tells Tom that he's a good man, and indeed he is.
The chambermaid at Bree and Karl's favorite no-tell motel (guest star Aisha Hinds, who you might recognize from her gigs on Dollhouse, HawthoRNe or True Blood) overhears her on the phone with Orson and is kind of judgy about Bree's infidelity.
Rather than shrug it off, Bree decides, on the unwitting advice of Orson, to confront the woman upon her next visit. "Did he cheat on you just once - or all the time?" Bree asks, assuming that the woman has been scorned by her own man's cheating. But no, she was in fact the cheater, and now she has no husband and no boyfriend, and she has to clean toilets in a motel.
This revelation allows Bree to admit that she too feels guilty, but in a final scene, she glances at the Bible in the motel-nightstand drawer and then over at Richard Burgi's glistening pecs, and makes the decision to continue the affair.
JULIE, DANNY and NICK
Julie is out of the hospital, and despite Nick's creepy overtures at her welcome-home party, she's standing firm on her decision to break up with him.
The plot thickens! It seems that Danny knows all about Nick and Julie's affair, and when he threatens to tell Angie, Nick tells him that his mother will be devastated that Danny knew and didn't say anything.
Julie tells Danny that she's having trouble sleeping, what with her attacker still being at large and all. Danny offers her a little peace of mind in the form of a loaded gun! Now, one could interpret this as just wildly bad judgment, but I'm thinking that Danny is hoping that Julie, in her distressed state, accidentally pops his old man. Right?
SUSAN and KATHERINE
The girls discuss Katherine's slowly disintegrating mental state, and they agree that they need to do something to help her. But she appears to be on her best behavior this week, sitting in the front row of Mike and Susan's neighborhood-watch meeting, wearing a sexy red dress and hanging on Mike's every word. (Bob and Lee volunteer for Thursdays before remembering that's when Project Runway is on. Heh.)
Susan and Katherine have a particularly unsatisfying face-off that is memorable only because Susan threatens Katherine ("you'll be sorry") if she doesn't stop chasing Mike. It ends with Susan saying something about Mike "snaking a lady's drain," which was funny way back in Season 1 when Edie said it, but now it goes over like a lead pipe wrench, er, balloon.
Later that evening, Julie hears someone outside the house and grabs the gun. She calls Susan, who takes the gun and shoots blindly at someone outside the window. It's Katherine, who was filling in for Tom Scavo on neighborhood watch, and is now the proud owner of a superficial gunshot wound on her shoulder. Uh-oh, this doesn't look good for Susan.
Once Nick realizes that the gun that shot Katherine is registered in the Bolens' real name, Angie the protective mama bear springs into action. She appeals to Katherine's sense of crazy, and tells her she can see that Mike is still into her. In the end, Angie convinces Katherine that playing the incident for sympathy will be better than calling the police.
I like the idea of Angie and Katherine becoming demented block buddies. Thus far, Drea de Matteo has had dangerously little time with the girls, which is the death knell for any recurring character on Housewives (just ask Alfre Woodard). Here's hoping their friendship blossoms into a flower of pure, misguided evil.
What did you think of "Everybody Ought to Have a Maid"? Is the Susan-Katherine standoff annoying you yet? Do you think Nick is responsible for Julie's attack? As much as I love Bree and Karl together, did you feel some tiny twinge of sympathy for Orson tonight? Is Tom a better husband than Gaby is a mother? And how would you better integrate Drea de Matteo into the season?