Real quick- can anyone explain to me why Ramona’s tagline is “Like a fine wine, I just get better with time” instead of “age”, like the expression actually goes? Did she just not want to bring attention to the word “age”, or what?
We start off this week at Bethenny’s apartment with her assistant Julia who is packing up Brynn’s suitcase for some trip. Wasn’t Bethenny’s old assistant named Julie? So, she dated two Jasons and has had two personal assistants with similar names as well. Smart cookie, that Bethenny…keeping it simple. Bethenny explains what strikes me as a pretty clever packing strategy where she gives Brynn several options of what to wear and then Brynn picks them out herself so that when she’s on the trip, she will want to wear what she brought because it was her decision. Brynn is headstrong and independent, so it’s important for Bethenny to let her feel like she’s in control a bit. I like it.
Bethenny tells us that Brynn is definitely girlier than Bethenny, “in the pink wheelhouse”, but not on a toddlers & tiaras level. I know Jason2, the ex-husband, is behind this decision, and it’s probably better for the kid, but it bums me out that we never get to see Brynn. In my head, she’s very Suri Cruise, ala Suri’s Burn Book, which is an excellent site that I highly recommend.
Dorinda and Carole meet up for tapas and Carole has a new phone because she lost her old one. Phone thieves take note- Carole does not password protect her phone. Really, Carole? And now some stranger has all of her sexy Adam pics. Sidenote- I love that Carole has sexy Adam pics. As Kerry noted in her live-tweeting last night, Carole saying “Can we be catty for one second?” is all of us. ALL OF US. Anyhow, Carole starts to talk shit about Jules house, and on the one hand my “RUDE!” alarm is going off, but on the other hand, the house is a legit construction site. You want to host a brunch? Do it at a restaurant.
Dorinda feels bad because Jules clearly put forth a lot of effort into making it a nice time for everyone, but the atmosphere was so tense that it was very unpleasant. Of course, that really wasn’t Jules’ fault, since I’d wager even if her house was in perfect Better Homes & Gardens condition, the air would still have been thick from the Carole/Luann Bethenny/John tension. Carole starts to mention this with Dorinda (the John stuff, not the Luann stuff) and Dorinda immediately bristles, demanding that John is no longer to be the scapegoat for every bad situation. Sure, totally. Except he is in this case. The issues between Bethenny and John are a major reason why that brunch sucked. Although, I’d put more blame on Bethenny making it awkward than John. Dorinda has decided to keep John on one side of her life, her friends on the other, and never the twain shall meet. This is the smart and correct decision.
Jules, wearing a very shiny jacket, arrives and Carole immediately apologizes for ruining the vibe at lunch, although it was more “eh, sorry we sucked” acknowledgement than heartfelt apology, but good enough. Jules dismisses any responsibility that Carole may have had in the BizarroBrunch, and launches into what is clearly a preplanned attack of Bethenny. Jules says she can’t decide if Bethenny is just rude, abrupt, blunt (yes, yes, yes), but she was taken aback by the way she entered the house and just started criticizing everything. Jules is not wrong, but Carole is the wrong audience for this rant. Carole and Bethenny are besties and while anyone with two eyes, ears and a pulse can see that Bethenny was way out of line for her comments at the brunch, Carole defends her with a dismissive, “That’s so Raven Bethenny”.
And then Jules completely loses all the footing she had by bitching that Bethenny’s Hampton’s house is smaller than her NYC apartment. You gotta watch out for people who are obsessed with size…. She also tries to be funny with a Zoolander quote that falls exceptionally flat. Jules also refers to her and Michael as “Old Money” and I need someone to fact check that for me, because usually people who are “old money”, don’t talk about money. It’s kinda one of their defining characteristics.
Dorinda, who is the nicest person to ever grace this franchise, thinks that while Bethenny is certainly an acquired taste, if Jules is able to peel back the layers a bit, they could all become friends. Did you guys read Bethenny’s tweets last night? There is no love lost here. Jules is meeting with Bethenny for dinner later that week and plans to give her a second chance. And then Jules bitches that Bethenny talks to fast. Pots shouldn’t call kettles fast talkers.
SONJA! We catch up with Sonja at her crumbling townhouse of indentured servants interns and dog poop and I’m thrilled to see her. #MORESONJA. Ramona has come over and I’m glad to see these girls back together again, even if I think Sonja deserves a better friend than Judgy McHypocrite. Ramona’s divorce is final and Sonja is genuinely happy and excited for her.
Ramona says that while she and Sonja are strained right now, she looks forward to reconnecting and misses the “old Sonja” who was always laughing and carefree. Ummm, Old Sonja looks a lot like New Sonja. The difference is New Sonja may have stuff she needs to worry about, but she just doesn’t want to share it with her friends or blab on about it on national tv.
Sonja says that she wasn’t with the group in the Hamptons because she was with her daughter but Ramona slaps that excuse away with a “No, you weren’t there because you weren’t invited.” Nice. Sonja seems oblivious to any issues she may be having with Bethenny and says she saw her recently and everything was fine! Ramona slaps that away too with a “she was very upset because you were so buzzed”, which isn’t even true. Bethenny wasn’t “upset”. She was just being judgmental as hell. Ramona also says that Bethenny called Sonja “embarrassingly drunk” and is now uncomfortable with being around her. Huh? Bethenny definitely put on her Party Police hat and called Lu and Sonja drunks, but it was hardly at the level Ramona is saying. Not to mention- why would Ramona say all of that in such a hurtful way to her friend who she is trying to mend fences with? Ramona sucks. Ramona sucks hard.
Ramona continues on with her “Screw you, old friend” speech, telling Sonja that she used to make excuses for Sonja’s drinking but the truth is, she feels that as a single woman on the town now, Ramona is going to be judged by the company she keeps; meaning Sonja is a drunk floozy and Ramona doesn’t want the stink of that on her. I’m livid for Sonja. Livid. But the thing about Sonja is, she is much cooler and calmer than I will ever be and she sort of shrugs off Ramona’s accusations with an “okay Ramona, thank you for sharing”.
I am a little disappointed with Sonja for passing the buck here and telling Ramona about how much of a drinker Luann is, and how they will be living together for a few days a week, which Ramona is instantly concerned about. Jesus Christ. These are GROWN WOMEN who no longer have their children in the house with them. Let them do what they want! Anyhow, Ramona is having a birthday party and she invites Sonja because, as she says, she will always invited Sonja. And if Lady Morgan gets too sloppy, she’ll have someone escort her out. #SonjaDeservesABetterFriend
Carole skypes with Adam who is in Ethiopia filming a movie about traveling doctors. Adam pretty abruptly gets off the phone, but to be fair, he was eating and had finally found decent food there, so #priorities. Carole likes the feeling of missing someone and is even a little jealous of Adam’s travels, since that was such a big part of her life as a reporter. Also- Carole has those pillows that say “sleep” on them. Booooooo.
Bethenny meets up with Jules and the ladies bond over their love-hate relationship with kale, but the moment is shortlived. Bethenny talking heads that every other word out of Jules’ mouth has something to do with being Asian or Jewish. So, what? Jules is proud of her heritage. Do you think Bethenny is uncomfortable with it because she feels less secure about her own upbringing and where she came from?
Jules talks really fast and says “like” over and over and over again. I do that too, but only when I’ve snorted cocaine. Jules is clearly nervous, can’t seem to string a sentence together, and Bethenny is getting frustrated. Jules also dances around the subject, which is not how Bethenny rolls. Bethenny gets her to admit that she was hurt about what Bethenny said, but ultimately has to handle both sides of this conversation because Jules can’t spit out what she’s trying to say. It all gets resolved, no real thanks to Jules who seems relieved to have put this to bed.
With basically zero segue, Jules tells Bethenny that she was in college for 7 years but never graduated (I heard that, girl). Jules also opens up to Bethenny about her struggles with an eating disorder that she says you never really get over. I applaud Jules for being open about this topic. Too many young girls (and guys) struggle with body dysmorphia and eating disorders and as Jules says, it’s important to be open and honest about it because it keeps you accountable.
Jules was a swimmer in high school and was under a lot of pressure. When she stopped swimming at 17, her eating disorder went rampant and she was 80lbs at one point. Yikes. Jules also says that she never got her period, which explains her “I have my period every month!” comment from the second (?) episode. Having a regular period is clearly a sign of health for Jules, but I hope she isn’t relying solely on that as an indication that everything’s okay.
Jules’s transparency goes a long way with Bethenny who has had to deal with her own issues relating to this disease. Bethenny shares that her mother had an eating disorder and a lot of her anxiety comes from a childhood spent worrying about her mom (was she eating, would she clog a friend’s toilet, etc). I know Bethenny cried every ten minutes last season, but I miss that more vulnerable and open side of her. I don’t need her to be an emotional wreck every episode, but it’s like Dorinda said about peeling back the layers; it paints a broader picture of QueenB when she’s exposed like this.
Lastly- Jules and Michael want to set Bethenny up with a Greek shipping heir. I’d say it’s a bit too early in this friendship to start playing Cupid, but Bethenny likes feta cheese, so she’s receptive to it.
Carole, Bethenny, and Ramona meet at Ramona’s pad for lunch. Ramona’s dinner table is in serious need of some folded up bar coasters to steady it and Carole is annoyed by how long it takes to get uptown. Not going to comment on the “CPT” line, by Bethenny who also teases Ramona, saying the basil she brought is from her garden (it’s from the togo bag), and Ramona just breezes on past this. I actually am starting to think Ramona and Bethenny might be the perfect friends. Ramona is an impenetrable force field who is incapable of hearing any criticism, which, let’s face it, is about 85% of what Bethenny says. Ramona just sort of smiles, nods, and repeats “I don’t know, I don’t know…”
Bethenny and Carole get into it again about Jules’ construction zone of a house. That said, Bethenny also seems to be happy with the progress made at lunch with Jules. I was concerned that was all for show, and that she’d go back to her mean-girl ways with Carole and Ramona, but she clearly was appreciative of Jules’ honesty. And furthermore, I really appreciate that Bethenny doesn’t gossip with the ladies about Jules’ eating disorder. Bethenny talking heads that “it’s not my story to tell”. THIS is the Bethenny I like.
Ramona asks Carole if she’s going to be okay around Luann at her birthday party, and Carole says that she will be, since 60 women will be there and they won’t be at the same table. Bethenny has questions about her own friendship with Luann, and talking heads that the Countess was desperate for an invite to the Hamptons Beverly Hills dinner that Bethenny hosted. Here’s the thing. I think that for many years, what defined Luann was her marriage to The Count and after that fell through she was defined by this show, being a mother, and maybe even her relationship with Jacque to some extent. Now, she’s single, her chicks have left the nest, and this show is really all she has. So for Luann, getting in good with Bethenny, who is inarguably the star of this franchise, is all about securing her place in what is her last great personal identifier. But Bethenny can smell desperation a mile away and has little to no patience for it. This relationship has soured, to say the least.
Bethenny tells Ramona and Carole that she feels like Old Snake-like Luann is back and Bethenny doesn’t like how Luann is always “running game”. Bethenny says she just doesn’t trust Luann, and fair enough, but Ramona jumps on this bandwagon as well. What is Ramona’s deal? She’s become a total Bethenny lackey who just agrees with everything she says. Safer that way?
Dorinda and Jules meet up for mani-pedis and Jules is happy to report that she and Bethenny bonded. Dorinda is happy to see that at least one fire is out, but she has to deal with her feelings towards Ramona. Dorinda is still hurt. I’m personally bored with this, but it’s not my life and I get why Dorinda is upset. She wants to move on, but ultimately just doesn’t feel the same way about her friendship with Ramona as she used to.
Bethenny arrives to Ramona’s party before the guest of honor gets there and she’s having flashbacks from the previous year’s party where she knew basically no one. Here’s my question- how does Ramona have 60 girlfriends to even invite to this shindig? I still say my theory stands that Ramona is a much better person off camera, but whenever a close friend of hers is on the show with her (Jill, Sonja, Dorinda), RealHousewifeRamona comes out and says something horrible and ruins the friendship.
Okay seriously- watch Ramona every time Bethenny says anything mildly insulting to her. She dodges the fuck out of it, Matrix style. Ramona calls Bethenny’s jumpsuit “black” (it’s purple), and when Bethenny snarks, “what, are you color blind now?” Ramona just smiles and says “yes, from all the excitement”. What?! It’s kind of awesome. And that’s ME, saying that about RAMONA.
Ramona is pissed that everyone is wearing red, which she calls her color. Um, didn’t she claim “Ramona Blue” last year as her color? And everyone knows that it’s the Skinny Girl color so I don’t know what Ramona is talking about, as per usual.
Sonja arrives, looking very Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Sonja apparently sent Bethenny a short novel in the form of a text, asking if what Ramona said about her was true and if that’s why she wasn’t invited. Of course, Ramona got it completely wrong and Bethenny says as much, so that at least got cleared up.
Jules shows up next and whines about how long it took her to get there, which is a real theme to this episode. She and Sonja click instantly and I’m not surprised. Both women are balls of energy and speak in stream of consciousness.
When Luann gets there, she glides right by Carole. Bethenny wants a sweater to combat the coldness, but Carole is happy to see that her relationship with Luann has evolved from the fake air kiss stage to the you-don’t-exist plane. Luann is excited to see Bethenny though, and has brought the queen a present. Oh Luann….this stinks of desperation. Who gives someone a gift at another person’s birthday party?
Do you guys remember that episode of Gilmore Girls back in season 2 in which Dean can tell that Rory is slipping away so he goes wildly overboard, trying to keep her? He calls non-stop, he washes her car when she’s not home, and he even approaches Lorelai who tries to explain to him that sometimes when we are scared of losing someone we hold so tightly to them that they break. Luann is breaking Bethenny.
Ramona is just pissed that Bethenny gets a beautiful bag, but Luann’s present to her is a necklace she had already given Ramona months ago that needed to be fixed, so she’s giving it again. LAME.
Luann is like a little kid who tried to make her mommy a present but mommy is still pissed about the crayon on the wall. Bethenny launches into to her issues with Luann (specifically inviting herself to the RHOBH’s dinner with Kyle), who gives it right back. I’m kinda with Luann on this one in that, this whole thing happened 4 months ago and they’ve seen each other since then. Why bring this up now? If it bothered Bethenny so much, why sit on it?
Bethenny channels her best Lisa Rinna and demands that Luann “own it!” UGH. You guys, I have to recap the RHOBH reunion after this and I’m been avoiding it hard core (obviously, since it aired Tuesday night). If I never see Rinna and Eileen after that, it will honestly be too soon.
Luann sincerely (at least to me, it seems) apologizes for stepping on Bethenny’s toes. She cries about her son Noel being gone, not having an NYC apartment of her own so she’s living out of a bag, and can we just stop it with the homeless rich girl shenanigans? Bottom line is this- Luann has been lonely and when people are lonely they can sometimes lean too hard on their friends. Luann gets choked up and clearly Bethenny’s kryptonite is vulnerability and tears because she backs down immediately saying she’s never even seen Luann cry before. Noted.
Fun side note- Jules is fan-girling hard about Bethenny now. She tells Carole she was “totally wrong” about Bethenny and now finds her to be very warm. Funny and commanding? Yes. Warm? Eh…..
Luann and Sonja ask Dorinda about John just in time for Ramona to join them. Dorinda makes some obtuse comments about “people” being mean to him and says she thinks they must be jealous. Um, no. Ramona relays this message to Bethenny who seems to be as equally confused as I am.
Dorinda stands up to give a toast to Ramona, and it’s lovely although I am laughing about Ramona calling Dorinda THE DAY AFTER HER HUSBAND DIED and demanding she come to her birthday lunch under the guise of “that’s what he would have wanted”. Dorinda speaks about loyalty and friendship but it feels like the sort of speech Tony Soprano would give before having the guest of honor wacked.
Tell em, Tony…
Until next week!
Recap written by Liz