"Listen to the Rain on the Roof" is the 48th episode of the ABC television series, Desperate Housewives. The episode was also the season premiere of the show's third season. The episode was written by Marc Cherry and Jeff Greenstein. It was directed by Larry Shaw. It originally aired on September 24, 2006.
The third season begins away from Wisteria Lane. It begins on Lakeview Drive, where Orson and his first wife, Alma, used to live. Alma is unhappy with their marriage, and she is afraid of Orson and wants to leave him. While Orson is not home, she packs her bags and her pet parrot, Baby, and accidentally falls on the kitchen floor. Baby's cage opens and he flies up to the banister. Orson comes home and sees the bags and shuts the door. A couple of days later, their nosy neighbor, Carolyn Bigsby, barges into their house. Orson is cleaning the kitchen and tells Carolyn, who wants to see Alma, that Alma left him and that he doesn't know where she is. Baby is saying, "Orson! No! Orson! No!" Carolyn is suspicious of Orson, believing that he killed Alma.
Lynette has made peace with the fact that Tom has another child. Both Tom and Lynette love Kayla and are more than willing to include her in the family, but they hate Nora and try to keep her away. Nora is a demanding woman and forces herself into the family. Parker is having a birthday party and Nora is uninvited. Lynette told her that they are just having a quiet afternoon. During the party, Nora calls and is suspicious. Lynette moves the party to the Solises' backyard so Nora won't see it once she arrives. When she does, the house is empty and quiet, and she buys it until a kid with a party hat comes in. She finds out where the party has been relocated. Tom and Lynette refuse to invite her, and Nora is pressured into letting Kayla stay.
Mike is in a coma, 6 months after he was run over. While Susan is shaving him, Dr. Craig tells her the chances of him waking up are slim. In the hallway, Susan meets Ian, whose wife, Jane, is in a coma after falling off a horse. Their relationship starts with coffee in the hall, but begins to get deeper. When Ian asks Susan on a date, she is shocked so she spills a strawberry smoothie all over Jane. She asks the comatose Mike if he's alright with the date, and that she wants him to wake up right away and tell her it's not OK. Susan is now beginning to lose hope herself.
Bree has only been dating Orson for 6 months, which is why she was surprised when he proposed to her. Bree says yes. Bree tells her friends she won't have sex with Orson until after the wedding. Gabrielle laughs, thinking it's a joke. She is snotty with Bree by saying, "you wouldn't take a car without taking it for a test drive!" Bree changes her mind, and is surprised when she finds out Orson wants to have oral sex with her. Bree tells her doctor about distressing feelings she felt during the sex. The doctor tells her she was merely having an orgasm. Bree realizes she's never had an orgasm before. Bree is also starting to get suspicious of Orson's dark past.
Carlos and Gabrielle are getting divorced. 8½ months pregnant Xiao-Mei is being confined to bedrest while Gabrielle is reluctantly caring for her. During an argument, Gabrielle tells Xiao-Mei that she will send her back to China to work as a slave after the baby is born. Xiao-Mei is freaked out, so she runs away. Carlos and Gabrielle are both searching for her. They ask a friend of Xiao-Mei's, Li, if she's seen her. Li tells them that she told her about Gabrielle's plans to send her back to China to work as a slave. Li tells them she won't tell. Gabrielle threatens her that if she doesn't, she will hire a health inspector to go through her crappy restaurant, and Li throws food at her shirt. Edie finds her in the Youngs' house, tells Gabrielle, and she is found.
Edie has put the Youngs' house on the market. She is upset with (Mrs. McCluskey), who is revealing the truth of the violent events that took place in that house. She shows around an older couple and a gay couple.
Orson's past begins to unfold. Carolyn makes a scene at Orson and Bree's engagement party when she accuses him of killing Alma. Bree embarrassed bolts off into the kitchen. Orson follows her and tells her that he didn't kill Alma but she left him and he was granted a divorce on the grounds of abandonment. Bree believes him and goes on with her party. After the party, Bree takes out the trash and stands in the rain. At the golf course, where Orson had been going for years, the rain has turned the newly made ground at the golf shop construction site into mud, revealing a hand sticking out from underneath.