Southern Charm Season 3 Episode 1
I’m so excited, you guys. I love this show, I love the city of Charleston, I love The South (capital t, capital s), and I really appreciate Bravo trying to quickly fill the Vanderpump Rules sized hole in our hearts.
We start off the season with Bravo teasing us with just-the-tip of the explosive dinner that’s been in all of the trailers. With the loss of his political career, it seems that Thomas T-Rav Ravenel also lost all of his grace, charm, composure and southern manners, but sadly we will have to wait to see exactly how that dinner goes down.
Let’s back things up by three months…Kathryn Dennis (who, as fellow recapper Kerry points out in her 10Thoughts, is the true star of this series) is pregnant with another one of T-Rav’s love children and T-Rav is sporting a shiner on his right eye. More on both those things later.
Cameron and Shep meet up to go fishing but mostly to gossip about Craig. The bromance between Shep and Craig has all but ended at this point and the boys don’t speak much these days. Cameron still talks to Craig at least once a week, which surprises Shep. Craig is living back with his parents in Delaware (which is a state I used to refuse to believe existed because I’d never met anyone from there). Shep doesn’t share Cameron’s optimism about #NewCraig and says that Craig he knows has a silver tongue that helps him get out of trouble. Cameron jumps off the boat to go pee because she’s a Guy’s Girl. And while I don’t have the distaste for Cameron that 10Thoughts recapper Kerry has (mostly due to my love for all things Real World and she was my fav on the San Diego season) but even I get tired of the Angel Edit that Cameron gets. Has she ever been shown in any sort of negative light? I know she falls into some bushes later in the season but that seems to be played as more adorable than embarrassing.
#NewCraig’s parents have a gorgeous golden retriever. That doesn’t have anything to do with the plot of this show, but I will never not point out an awesome dog. #NewCraig (as I will refer to him for the rest of the season, except when talking about old Craig) is headed back to Charleston because that’s where the reality tv show he is on is being filmed and the show is his only job because that’s where he wants to be to live his life.
Shep and Cam continue to gossip, moving from #NewCraig to Kathryn and baby numero dos. Shep jokes that lots of people try for years to get pregnant but T-Rav and Kat don’t even like each other and can’t help but procreate every time they are in the same room. Cameron calls the whole thing “tawdry”, and I make a mental note to use that word more because I love it. I do appreciate how this show depicts the platonic relationship between Cameron and the boys. As a girl with mostly male friends myself, I like that there hasn’t been a forced crush-on-Cam plotline. Boys and girls can make nice and be friends without their naughty bits touching. Seemingly randomly, Cameron asks Shep how many girls he’s been with and upon hearing the answer, tries to have a Meg Ryan moment and tells him that surely some of those women were “faking it” but Shep couldn’t care less as long as it’s a good performance. Shep can be a dick but I always enjoy his yellow-lab like good natured attitude about things. Although it’s easier to act like you don’t have a care in the world when you literally don’t and have that sweet, sweet Mailbox Money rolling in.
#NewCraig gets off the plane and we meet Naomie, his gorgeous girlfriend of 8 months. Both #NewCraig and Naomie will be living in her parents gorgeous deep-water marsh-front home until it sells. If #NewCraig and Naomie break up, I’m calling dibs right now. On Naomie. Obviously.
#NewCraig doesn’t want the house to “go to waste” and asks if they can throw a big party. Everyone’s invited, including Shep, because Craig has grown up enough to recognize that the deterioration of their friendship has more to do with his own behavior last year than anything else. I like #NewCraig. #NewCraig wants to play nice and be friends again assuming NiceShep comes to his party instead of MeanShep.
Kathryn is living at home with daughter Kensington (because she and Thomas are apparently nothing to each other at this point) and she is 7 months pregnant with baby2, which is no surprise to all die-hard SC fans as we heard the news on social media a long time ago. I do not understand how T-Rav could possibly sleep with Kat again sans condom, but according to Lady Dennis, after a 4 day whirlwind romance (read: drunken long weekend), God decided that these two should once again procreate. And that’s why I’m an atheist.
Patricia has what seems to be the same flamingo pool floatie as Lisa Vanderpump. Patricia has lots of dogs and is fabulous, but she is no LVP. She also seems to be channeling Kyle, dressed in her kaftan. I wonder what Bravo show is Pat’s favorite?
Patricia’s man-servant Michael is out of town on vacation so there is no one there to fetch her morning martini. Whitney and his atrocious pinkie ring swing by for a visit and he always gives me a creepy Norman Bates-y vibe when he calls Patricia “mother”. Patricia is less than pleased that Whitney is still pretending to be a restaurateur, which is a career that Whitney doesn’t seem to have much interest in anymore. The place still isn’t open and co-owner Bryan is pissed that they are so far behind schedule and over budget. The conversation quickly turns to Thomas, who has a new house up the street from Patricia. Lady Pat refuses to talk about Kathryn’s pregnancy and Whitney cracks a joke questioning the ethnic origins of Baby2. This reads as more racist than funny.
Cooper comes to visit Kathryn because they are new besties. As merely a secondary player on this show, Cooper wisely knows where his bread is buttered and is smart enough to be friends with both alpha females on this show. Side note- Kathryn’s parent’s house is an 800 acre plantation that used to farm rice, cotton, and tobacco and there is a slave cemetery on the property. The south is full of creepy history like that. Kathryn is ready to leave the plantation and head back into town.
Like Kathryn, I too wonder why Patricia seems to hate her so much. Pat’s reasoning of “she doesn’t have a proper education” and that Kathryn has two illegitimate children, seems like reason enough for a high society southern woman to not associate herself with a person, but not enough of a reason to hate that sperson the way Patricia hates Kat.
Kathryn, who has somehow turned into the unlikely voice of reason for this show, says that Patricia seems to think Whitney is this shining example of perfection when in fact he has a failing restaurant, a failing music career, an invisible girlfriend, and a pinkie ring. Cooper tells Kathryn that she disrupted the little downtown world of Charleston when she swooped in like a hurricane which is likely the reason Pat is so testy about her. Kathryn exposes people’s hypocrisy, and that’s always unwelcome from society folks. I love her and want to be drinking buddies with her during the few months out of the year that she isn’t knocked up with a Ravenel baby.
#NewCraig and Naomie are making what looks to be grapefruit juice and champagne, which I always call “Liz-osas”, because I prefer grapefruit over the orange juice in mimosas. #NewCraig is nervous to call Shep and invite him to their housewarming party, and I guess rightfully so as Shep won’t even answer the phone. I do think Shep was sort of in the right last season with Craig, but now he’s just acting petty.
Over at Thomas’s new house (new for him at least as it was built in 1813), which he calls his Downtown Compound, T-Rav is in the middle of restoring the place to its former grandeur. Landon, who I hope has more to do this season because she was sort of boring last year, pops by on her bike for a visit because, as she tells us in her Talking Head, she and T-Rav have been hanging out since they are neighbors now. But she says it in this really weird way that implies something else is going on between the two of them. Thomas has a black eye because some guy at a club head butted him which is hilarious and stupid all at the same time.
Talk turns to Kathryn and Thomas is looking to get a court order for a custody arrangement of the kids which is what everyone who co-parents should do. Make things official, people! And get everything in writing. Documentation is key. In the south, the old rules of “Mother Knows Best” still apply and Kathryn currently has complete control over the children. It’s interesting to me to see Landon and Thomas talking shit about Kathryn since we saw T-Rav scold Landon for being catty about Kat at the dinner party three months from now.
Landon moves on down the road and heads over to Shep’s house to go with him and Whitney to #NewCraig’s party. Landon rightfully takes Shep to task for exploiting the weakness he saw in Craig last year and she says that because Shep grew up in the South, he doesn’t believe that men should be sensitive whereas Craig, who grew up north of the Mason-Dixon line*, got his panties in a bunch and his feelings were hurt by Shep. Shep whines that Craig “betrayed” all of them last season which is utter nonsense.
*There actually seems to be some debate on this and if you look at the actual line, Delaware seems to be both North AND South.
Here’s what I love about this show- other than Kathryn, and to some extent Patricia, the women on Southern Charm are composed and not prone to hissy fits like the Real Housewives or the women on any other Bravo show. The men, on the other hand, are the real divas and it’s nice to see that change of pace.
Kathryn (whose hair looks freshly dyed) is getting ready for the party with her friend Jennifer. We find out that Landon allegedly propositioned T-Rav when they were both in London and if that’s true, there is no way that Thomas turned her down since he is a horn dog and Landon’s really pretty if you like girls with smiles that are too big for their faces.
Over at Shep’s house (which I’m always disappointed by because I have no interest in seeing new construction in a town as historic as Charleston), Whitney has arrived and Landon laments that Kathryn hates her now because she and T-Rav are friendly. Landon protests (a bit too much for my taste) that she has no interest in Thomas and would never sleep with him and says that Kathryn doesn’t understand that men and women can be Just Friends.
The party is underway and #NewCraig is wearing all pink. I love that in the south, it’s socially acceptable for men to wear pastels. Danni and Cameron arrive and Danni looks emaciated. I know that it’s wrong to comment on another woman’s body like that but seriously. The girl looks ill. Shep, Landon, & Whitney arrive and did I miss something? Because I know it’s been a while since season 2, and I do remember Shep and Craig getting into it a lot, but Shep is acting like Craig slept with his wife or something. He even goes so far as to “jokingly” call #NewCraig Euro-Trash. Ease up, buddy. This level of cattiness is unbecoming. #NewCraig smiles but is visibly wounded by the comment.
Over on the other side of the party, the members of the other bromance of seasons past (Whitney and Thomas) awkwardly say their hellos. Whitney talking heads that due to Thomas’s erratic behavior, they’ve lost touch which Whitney is fine with since Thomas is, and I quote, Fucking Nuts. Confession time? I secretly really like Whitney. He’s bitchy in this terrible way that I always enjoy in people. I’m not saying I’d like to be his friend, but he’d be a fun coworker to go get lunch with.
T-Rav hits things off with a girl at the party, and everyone’s excited for Kathryn to show up and flip out. I feel like that sums up most of this show. We’re all just waiting for Kathryn to show up and flip out. As soon as she arrives, the signature Bravo Twinkly Villian Music swells. Shep and #NewCraig graciously say hello and are welcoming while Landon and Cameron just ignore her, because as Cam says- if you don’t know what to say, don’t say anything at all. I’m not sure Miss Manners would agree with that but Kathryn talking heads that none of the old crew reached out to her when the rumor mill started going about her pregnancy, so maybe everyone else is also playing by Cameron’s Rules of Etiquette. That said, sweet Elizabeth (of J.D. and Elizabeth) tells FriendJennifer that she’s tried reaching out to Kathryn but hasn’t heard back and thinks that maybe she’s blocked on Kat’s phone. It’s like that time on the VPR reunion when Stassi was pissy that no one had stayed in touch with her, but she had everyone blocked so how could they…
And now it’s time for Shep and #NewCraig to hash it out. It’s actually pretty whiney and just a bunch of interruptions that start with “yeah, but…” from both sides. Shep says that Craig was a gloating, out of control, and an idiot last year while #NewCraig complains that near the end, Shep was just being a bully. #NewCraig owns up to a lot of his shit and Shep seems to pretty easily completely put it all behind him and hopefully that’s the last of these two bickering and the boys can get back to their friendship of Season 1.
Thomas drunkenly approaches Kathryn, who is having none of it. These two only work well when they are both wasted and Kathryn is pregnant, sooooo. Thomas doesn’t read the vibe at all and starts talking about his house and how renovating is costing him way too much money and how he has changed the color of Kensington’s nursery from pink to periwinkle. Kathryn hears this last bit on info and is immediately suspicious. She furiously demands to know who is helping him make such egregious wall color decisions (cue major shade and side eye thrown to Landon who Kathryn notes in her talking head just so happens to be wearing PERIWINKLE! DUN DUN DUUUUUNNNNN!!!!!!) Seriously? Never has the word “periwinkle” been said with such distain. Also- Thomas asks to touch Kathryn’s stomach and it’s as uncomfortable as it sounds.
Welp- episode 1 is in the can. Sorry for the delay on this. I’m still in the process of getting into a regular writing schedule now that I’m back at work. Until next time!
Recap written by Liz