Francine "cheating" on Stan
Not Particularly Desperate Housewives
Francine joins the Ladybugs
Season: 1 Episode: 16
Total Episode Count: 16
Prod. no.: 1AJN16
First Aired: December 18, 2005
Guest Starring: Sandra Oh
Featuring: Francine Smith
Also Appearing: Stan Smith, Steve, Hayley, Klaus, Roger, Christie White, Linda Memari, Greg Corbin, Terry Bates, Avery Bullock, Jackson, Duper, Dick, Casey, Katie, Anne Flemming, Hector, Marvin, Fussy, Ronald Reagan
Director: Brent Woods
Assistant Director: Colin Heck
Writers: Dan Vebber
Storyboarders: Aldin Baroza, Chris Bennett, Jamie Oliff
Newspaper Headline: "Clever Bumper Sticker Ends Abortion Debate"
Plot: Francine wants to escape her routine. Stan refuses to eat lasagna which Francine prepared on a day other than Thursday, while neighbor Linda Memari insists on doing jigsaw puzzles with her every Wednesday night. Shopping with Linda at Red State Grocery, Francine sees "the Ladybugs," a group of women with "a fast lane lifestyle and slow motion walk." These women all wear ladybug brooches. At the supermarket's parking lot, Francine sees a woman who was crushed to death by a train of shopping carts, and takes in the dead woman's dog, Fussy. When she brings it home, Stan wants it out of the house because he think's Fussy is too effeminate, until Fussy mauls Roger.
Francine skips puzzle night with Linda to go to an art opening with the Ladybugs at the nightclub . The Ladybugs still refuse to admit Francine, until a misunderstanding causes them to believe Francine is having an affair with the valet. They reveal to Francine the true nature of their organization: they cheat on their husbands. Francine receives a ladybug brooch and tries to maintain the fiction of her affair with the valet.
However, Francine does not want to cheat on Stan, nor does she involve the valet in her charade. She at first pretends to write love letters but is pushed for more. When Francine refuses to show her lover to the Ladybugs, she asks to leave the organization. The Ladybugs refuse, because they fear Francine could betray their secrets, and they have no secrets on her with which to counter-blackmail her. They tell her they wouldn't want her to wind up like Anne Flemming. Francine does some research, and learns that Anne Flemming was the woman who was crushed by the shopping carts in the beginning. The Ladybugs make it apparent that they are able to get to Francine at any time since practically every woman in Langley Falls (except perhaps, Linda) is a Ladybug. They prepare to kill Francine at the supermarket parking lot the same way they killed Anne, but she is saved in the nick of time by Linda, who passionately kisses her so that the Ladybugs think that Francine's affair is with a woman. Believing that they have a good enough counter-blackmail they leave her alone with a warning. Francine thanks Linda for faking that kiss, though Linda awkwardly thanks her, then says she needs to go home to her husband because "she loves him", and then runs off.