"I'm Still Here" is the 147th episode of Desperate Housewives.
Lynette feels her mother is marrying Frank, an abrasive and obnoxious man, for all the wrong reasons, and thus tries to talk her out of it. Meanwhile, Carlos becomes concerned when he learns about Gabrielle's obsession with her doll, and Bob and Lee hire a non-maternal Renee to decorate their newly adopted girl's bedroom. Bree runs into Keith's ex-girlfriend and learns some shocking news about his past, and Susan tries to befriend a curmudgeonly man who has given up on ever finding a kidney donor. In the meantime, Paul appears to have some plans for Beth, as he books a trip for the two of them to a remote cabin in the woods.
The episode opens with Mary Alice revealing that Paul is trying to figure out how to punish Beth for not telling him that Felicia is her mother. Beth arrives at the hospital to visit and discovers that Paul is getting ready to come home. She explains that she thinks Bree and the others were trying to frame her by planting a gun of the same calibre as the one used to shoot Paul. Paul, who suspects Beth, suggests that they go on a trip to somewhere "secluded" to get away from it all. Beth enthusiastically agrees.Later, Beth wakes up in the middle of the night and sees Paul sitting in a chair crying. She asks what's wrong and he admits that he has so much "hatred" inside of him - for his neighbours who betrayed him, for his son who disowned him and for whoever tried to kill him. He admits that he is tired of hating people but doesn't know how to stop. Beth tells him to focus on the good things in life, like his marriage to her. He admits that all he wanted was for her to love him, and she replies: "Here we are." Beth tells him to come back to bed and adds that they should think about their trip in the morning. Paul reveals that he's booked a cabin in the woods so they can go somewhere nobody can find them. Beth agrees and adds that he needs to identify what is negative in his life and get rid of it. "That sounds like a plan," Paul replies. Later, the pair prepare for their trip and Beth puts a note of their location for the gardener. When she turns her back, Paul scrunches up the note. He sees the police coming to the door and asks Beth to get some blankets. Outside, the detectives explain that a gun was discovered at Bree's house and Paul explains that he knows. They add that Bree thinks Beth planted the gun to implicate her and her friends in the shooting. He holds up the gun and Paul is shocked, adding that he knows for a fact the gun does not belong to Beth. Inside, he tells Beth that the trip is off and claims that there was a problem with the cabin. Beth is upset, explaining that she was looking forward to it, but Paul replies: "I think you dodged a bullet here." The episode closes with Paul looking at a photograph of him and his son Zach. Carlos is furious to discover that Gabrielle spent $840 on a doll. She claims that it was for Bob and Lee's new daughter and explains that it made her feel good, pointing out that she has stopped staying in bed and sobbing all night. Later, Gaby goes to see Karen to get the menu of a Chinese restaurant she recommended. When she is there, she spots that Karen has a doll as well. Karen explains that it was just her childhood doll and is shocked when Gaby pulls hers out of her bag. Gabrielle enthusiastically suggests that they should all go to the tea room at the doll shop and Karen realises that she means them and the dolls. Karen goes to talk to Carlos and tells him that Gaby is still struggling. Later, Gaby calls to her daughters for dinner and realises that her doll is sitting on a chair. She goes to speak to it but Carlos approaches her and ask why she lied about the doll being hers. He admits that he doesn't understand why she would spend $800 on a doll which she carries round and takes to tea. Gaby points out that it makes her happy but Carlos tells her it's not about a doll, and is clearly about Grace. Gabrielle yells at him: "No!" and shouts that his rule is that they're not allowed to speak about Grace. She goes to get ready for dinner. Later, Gaby and Carlos get in the car to go to the Chinese restaurant. Carlos is shocked to discover that Gaby has put her doll in a car seat, but she explains that it is expensive. Carlos suggests that they go to a therapist, but Gaby insists that she isn't crazy and doesn't need to talk to anyone. The pair soon get lost in a run-down area and Gaby persuades Carlos to stop the car and use the GPS. However, a mugger approaches them with a gun and tells them to get out of the car. Carlos does, but Gaby frantically tries to unbuckle her doll. The mugger gets angry and asks if she is trying to play with him, and Carlos is eventually forced to pull Gaby out of the car. Gaby screams and sobs as the mugger drives the car away with the doll inside. Carlos tells her that the doll is not Grace and hugs her as she cries. Renee is horrified when she discovers that her rival interior designer Barbara Fairchild has been hired by Bob and Lee. They explain that they are decorating their new daughter's bedroom and didn't think of Renee as particularly maternal. She offers them a great deal and Bob and Lee agree to hire Renee instead. When she has finished, Bob and Lee are thrilled with the room. Renee admits that she has been thinking about designing the room for 20 years because there was a time she thought about having children. Bob and Lee realise that she regrets not having children and suggest that she could still adopt. However, Renee excuses herself, suggesting that she has to speak to the painter. Later, Bob and Lee take their daughter Jenny to meet Renee. Bob and Jenny leave and Lee tells Renee that he knows Jenny will need to talk to a woman about some things in life. He asks if they could bring Jenny over to see Renee if that happens, and Renee happily agrees. Amber arrives looking for Keith. Bree offers to pass on a message and asks what Amber wants. Amber suggests that she is a "nosy landlady" and is shocked when Bree reveals that she is dating Keith. She rushes away and tells Bree not to tell Keith that she stopped by. Later, Bree is in bed and nudges Keith to wake him. She claims that he was yelling "Amber" in his sleep and Keith admits that he had a girlfriend called Amber about seven years ago. He reveals that he lived with her for three years but she left him. He explains that he doesn't think about her anymore and goes back to sleep. Bree goes to visit Amber at her motel and suggests that she seemed upset yesterday, but Amber insists it was "no big deal". However, her son Charlie suddenly appears and Bree realises that Keith is his father. Amber invites Bree inside and explains that she didn't know she was pregnant until she'd left Keith. She reveals that she didn't tell him because she had decided to give Charlie up for adoption and didn't want him to change her mind. She adds that she couldn't go through with giving Charlie away but never felt like she could "ambush" Keith with a kid. She says that Charlie is now starting to ask questions and she can't be vague for much longer. She admits that she should tell Keith but confesses that she doesn't think she could do it. Bree offers to tell him for her and Amber agrees. At dinner, Bree brings up the subject of children and asks Keith if he is still OK with not having children. He is uncomfortable with the conversation and refuses to answer when she asks if he would take the chance to be a father. He admits that he used to want to be a dad but then he met Bree. Bree asks what he would do if he had the choice, and Keith replies: "I don't." Bree goes to Amber's again and claims that Keith feels it would be too difficult to meet Charlie after so long. She explains that she and Keith feel that they should do something and hands over a cheque, before leaving. The next day, Bree is pruning some roses and Keith says it looks like she is killing them. "I know it looks bad but sometimes you have to be ruthless if you want something beautiful to keep growing," Bree replies.
Susan arrives for her first dialysis treatment but is disappointed when she discovers that the patient having the treatment at the same time - Dick - doesn't want to talk. Over the next few treatments she persists, adding that although waiting for a transplant is brutal, they can try to stay positive. Dick points out that they are both waiting for someone to die and a grieving family to be asked if organs can be harvested from their loved one, before waiting for the organ to be a match. "I know your intentions are good but you don't have to entertain me or comfort me," he adds. Susan explains that she wasn't trying to comfort him, hinting that she was trying to comfort herself. At a later treatment, Susan chats with a fellow patient - Ethan - but complains that Dick is always miserable. However, a pager suddenly goes off, suggesting that a transplant is a match for someone. Dick frantically looks through his briefcase but Ethan is thrilled to realise it is for him. Susan hugs him and congratulates him. When he leaves, she notices that Dick is devastated. She sits next to him for her treatment and takes his hand. Dick puts his hand on top of hers.
Lynette's mother Stella comes to visit and reveals that she is getting married on Saturday. Lynette is surprised and asks to meet Stella's fiancé Frank. Stella agrees and the trio meet for lunch at a retirement village. However, Lynette is shocked to discover that Frank is rude and makes racist references to their Mexican waiter. Eventually, Frank has to leave and Lynette asks Stella how she could marry "that jerk". Stella admits that she doesn't love Frank and is marrying him for his money. At the wedding, Lynette tells Tom that she can't be a part of her mother marrying "some jackass she doesn't even love". Tom jokes that when Stella dies, they will get all of the money. He adds seriously that if Lynette doesn't support her mother, it could ruin their relationship. Lynette agrees and begins to wheel Stella down the aisle. However, she is shocked when Frank starts tapping his watch and making signs for them to hurry up. She wheels Stella into a side room as she protests. Lynette explains that she can't let her mother marry such a "jerk" and suggests that she and Tom have savings that Stella could have. However, Stella confesses that Frank needs her, and no-one else does any more. She explains that saying she was marrying Frank for money was easier than admitting how "useless and lonely" she feels. Lynette apologises and agrees to go through with the wedding. Frank appears, explaining that he is trying to have a wedding, and Stella reveals that Lynette doesn't think he's good enough for her. "She's right," he replies, before telling them to hurry up.
- Although credited, James Denton (Mike Delfino) is absent from this episode. Madison De La Garza (Juanita Solis) and Mason Vale Cotton (MJ Delfino) are too absent and therefore are not credited.
- The title of this episode comes from a song in the Stephen Sondheim musical Follies.
Gallery of photographic stills released to promote the episode.