We had another Real Housewives double-header last night, with Real Housewives of Orange County making its eight season debut before the second part of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills reunion. I was worried that the reunion must be super boring if they were hiding it behind the OC premiere instead of giving the episode its own week, which most reunions have for at least one of their segments. Neither of Beverly Hills’ two parts had that leisure, and unfortunately, it was because nothing much interesting was said.

The OC premiere was a little more successful, mostly because Vicky is still a stark, raving lunatic who has now inserted foreign objects into her face. Most of the rest of the premiere felt like a mid-season episode, which might bode poorly for the entertainment value of the season to come. Still, let’s have a recap. That’s what I’m here for.

1. Vicky had a chin implant. For the love of everything holy, if I had made a list of cosmetic procedures I thought might improve Vicky’s facial appearance, a chin implant would not have been in the top 30. If I’ve learned anything from living in a neighborhood with lots of rich older women who have had weird plastic surgery, it’s that implants and injectables are bad, modest lifts are good. Instead of getting a facelift, which is really all that Vicky would have needed if she was unhappy with her loose skin, she just tried to fill the loose skin with random junk.

2. Vicky broke up with Brooks. So, you know. One good decision, one bad decision. Par for the course, almost literally.

3. Or did she break up with Brooks? MORE TO COME.

4. Tamra and Eddie have moved in together and did start a fitness studio. There’s trouble in paradise, though, because Eddie doesn’t want Tamra to wear her shoes on the carpet. Don’t let the man get you down, Tamra.

5. Brianna had her baby. Vicky’s now a grandma, which will no doubt inspire a half dozen more ill-advised cosmetic procedures. Also, I’m pretty sure she had pipe cleaners glued to her eyelids for her interviews instead of fake lashes. Unrelated, but still worth noting.

6. Tamra and Vicky still hate each other and everyone still hates Alexis. Or at least Tamra, Gretchen and Heather hate her, which might as well be everybody. For the record, I still hate Alexis too, even though I think she looks nice without all her fake hair.

7. Earth Jesus thinks he’s an art connoisseur. That’s it, that’s the joke.

8. Alexis thinks that if she keeps saying she got bullied, it’ll eventually be true. Sure, the women weren’t super nice to her, but all the stuff they said in Costa Rica last year was stuff that someone needed to say to Alexis. She is a shallow, materialistic faux-snob who acts better than everyone else out of the transparently insecure hope that maybe, someday, people will believe her. Trying to alert someone to their own bad behavior, however indelicately, is not bullying.

9. Heather put Tamra and Vicky across from each other at her dinner party. That’s a super amateur hostess mistake – if two people don’t get along, you put them on the same side of the table, but with at least one person between them. Maybe Heather wants someone to get forcibly drowned in her new pool, though.

10. Do we like any of these women? Toward the end of the episode when they were setting up the fights for next week, it struck me that I don’t think I have much, if any, genuine affection for anyone on this cast. Vicky is a dumpster fire of a human being. Tamra is funny, but craven and mean. Gretchen’s just on the show to push her various poorly conceived product lines. Alexis has a nice new haircut, and that’s the only positive thing I can say about her. If Heather says “champs” one more time, I’ll hunt her down and personally throttle her. In all the other versions of this series, there are people for whom I root in spite of their faults. In the OC, I just want to watch the world burn.

And now for the reunion…

1. Kyle tried to gloss over the difficulties in Adrienne’s marriage but Lisa wouldn’t let her finish her story. Kyle’s been Team Adrienne all season, of coure, and when Andy asked about their marriage, she started in with the normal platitudes about how she thought their bickering was adorable and normal for them, but Lisa cut in and said that, actually, things have been bad for a while and Paul had moved out before. Clearly, there are future commissions to be had from Adrienne and Paul, so Kyle’s still walking the company line.

2. Pretty much all of the Housewives seem to think that Adrienne’s using her personal chef to plant bad things about Paul in the press. It certainly lends credence to what Brandi and Lisa have been saying all season about Bernie’s involvement, and not even Kyle spoke up to contradict the speculation that Bernie was making false abuse allegations against Paul and that Adrienne was likely on board with it. I’ve always been adamant in my belief Taylor was genuinely and repeatedly abused by Russell, and I’m just as sure that Paul wasn’t doing the same thing to Adrienne. Nothing about their relationship dynamic shows any warning signs, and unlike Taylor, there’s no documented medical history of injuries or incidents. If the rest of the cast is right, Adrienne might be the worst person we’ve ever had on Real Housewives. There’s little lower than making false abuse accusations. It’s like falsely reporting a rape; lying only makes it more difficult for real victims to be taken seriously and have their attackers prosecuted.

3. Kim may or may not have had poop on her pillow. I felt like we glossed over this one – where did the poop come from? Why did Kim seemingly admit that there was poop? What’s the storyline around the poop? Talk about burying the lede here, Bravo.

4. Ok, so it was said poorly, but I kind of get what Brandi was saying about Kyle and Kim’s sobriety. No, I don’t think Kyle is “hoping” for Kim to fail. I do think Kyle is constantly trying to remind herself that something could go wrong, though, because she’s watched her sister self-destruct for decades, and getting her hopes up for a 100% successful recovery must seem like a terrible emotional risk. I don’t blame Kyle for trying to temper her expectations, and I do think that can come across as Kyle being unimpressed with Kim’s efforts and maybe even wishing that she’d hurry up and fail and get it over with. I don’t think that’s what it actually is, and I think Brandi should have thought about it a little harder before she said it, but I can see where the generalized sentiment would come from and why Kyle would act that way.

5. Paul no longer hates Brandi, but Adrienne still does. Paul at least bothered to film a little statement for the reunion, which is more than we can say for his ex-wife, who is apparently hoping we’ll all forget she exists but still buy her ugly shoes and disgusting flavored vodka.

6. Kyle and Mauricio’s real estate machinations are increasingly transparent. Even while Mauricio was claiming that he and Kyle didn’t butter up Adrienne and Paul in order to get the listing when they sold their house, he couldn’t help but brag that when he did get the listing, he sold it in two weeks. Real convincing there, you guys. I suppose Bravo cut out the part where Mauricio distributed his business card to everyone at the reunion shoot.

Last night we got a double dose of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, with the season three finale and the first part of the reunion airing back-to-back. Going into the evening, I suspected that they were double loading the two episodes because neither was really all that exciting and Bravo knew that people would complain if they strung it out for an extra week without delivering much. After watching the episodes, I suspect I was right.

The central problem, of course, is that Adrienne still won’t let Whatever Brandi Said be uttered on television, so the season’s entire arc is still about nothing, and it can’t ever really be resolved. Even though we’ve all read the speculation, the fact that it can’t be discussed means that there’s never any end game, which was particularly obvious in the reunion, where resolution is usually the main event. Still, though, we forge onward.

1. Taylor’s really trying to make this friends-with-David’s-ex thing into a storyline. It’s been mentioned in several past episodes that Taylor has issues with Yolanda because she’s married to David Foster, who used to be married to Taylor’s friend Linda. David and Linda got divorced in 2005, which was, last I checked, eight years ago. (Someone check my math there.) Yolanda didn’t get married to him until 2011, and no one’s accused Yolanda of breaking up David’s previous marriage, so I don’t have any idea what any of this has to do with anything, except for the fact that it gives Taylor a narrative to cling to.

2. In Faye’s own head, she’s a justice crusader. In Faye’s head, matching your hair color with your spray tan shade is the hot look for spring, so it must be a fascinating and terrifying place in there.

3. Kim was right, if late – Kyle was way more upset about Brandi’s treatment of Adrienne than her treatment of Kim. Brandi said some genuinely nasty things about Kim last season, and they ended up being mostly untrue. Yes, Brandi was under duress when she said them. Yes, Kyle and Kim bullied her and it was hard to feel bad for them. Yes, it was weird that the switch flipped in Kim’s mind right then and she started that argument in the middle of Lisa’s party. But that doesn’t make her any less right; Kyle’s gone to battle for Adrienne all season, it’s been one of the show’s only narrative arcs, and it was over something Brandi said that seems to have been true. When it was her own sister in question and she knew the accusations to be factually incorrect, Kyle’s crusade was nowhere near as zealous. I’m not sure that any of us really care at this point, and it probably should have been pointed out a long time ago, but Kim’s not wrong.

4. Adrienne actually showed up to Lisa’s party. Everyone grieves these things in different ways, but Adrienne said she had just been served with papers that night. She walked in and immediately collapsed in a pile of tears with everyone patting her hands and fawning over her. She didn’t even bother to greet Lisa or Ken at their vow renewal before making a scene. I don’t doubt that Adrienne was genuinely sad for what was happening, but it also seemed like she did take significant time to consider how to seem as sympathetic as possible, both on the show and the stories that were released about the split at the time. (Remember those false accusations of child abuse against Paul?) As soon as she was done making the scene, Adrienne showed herself out (both of the party and of the show) before Lisa and Ken even renewed their vows, which is the emotional equivalent of farting in a crowded elevator and getting out at the next floor.

5. Yolanda is not having any of Adrienne’s BS. And she’s right, of course, as she has tended to be lately, despite her jarringly retro sexual politics. Adrienne walled everyone off from her life, which might be understandable when you know that her marriage was crumbling at the time, except that she did it from atop the highest of horses. You can’t be holier-than-thou and a sympathetic figure.

6. After Adrienne left, everyone sat around and speculated about her prenup. It was the most Beverly Hills thing I’ve ever seen, and definitely my favorite moment of the episode. Maybe the entire season.

7. Lisa shouldn’t have had her vow-renewal as the end-of-season party if she didn’t want everyone to be an idiot at it. As much as I like Lisa, and as much as I agree with her in principle (people should keep their own drama to themselves and have some manners while at someone else’s ceremonial life event), let’s get real – this is Real Housewives. The last party is always full of bickering and screaming and tears. Lisa should be glad no one physically assaulted anyone else.

8. Still, their vow renewal was adorable. Even Giggy stood up at the altar with them! If I’m half as in love and half as beautiful as Lisa when I’m 51, I’ll think myself the luckiest woman in the world.

And now, on to the reunion…

1. Adrienne skipped the reunion. Andy seemed pissed that Adrienne didn’t bother to show up, and he went out of his way, in an obviously scripted and faux-dramatic monologue at the top of the hour, to rub in the fact that running away from the reunion was her “final” act as a Housewife and asked the group if they thought she was cowardly for avoiding the conversation. No one asked me, but yes, it’s totally cowardly. I’m also sure that Andy, as a programming exec at Bravo, is pissed at what Adrienne took away from the season by skipping out on much of filming and suing to make sure that Brandi’s accusations couldn’t be talked about in specifics.

2. Is Yolanda cold? Well, not everyone is super friendly at first, and it makes sense to go into a reality TV cast with your guard up. Also, Yolanda tends to have very strong opinions about things and shares them at will, which can make a person seem aggressive when you first meet her, particularly if some of the opinions are not the ones commonly held within the group. By now, I think we all know that Yolanda is honest and well-intentioned, if at times a bit old-fashioned. Also, I don’t know why she was sick as a dog in Kyle’s driveway. I didn’t follow that anecdote.

3. Is Taylor an alcoholic? Well, maybe.

4. “At the party for Kim’s new nose…” An actual thing that was said on television.

5. Kyle wants credit for not fighting with Brandi to her face all season. So, lemme get this straight. I can say nasty thing about someone in front of a camera crew for months, and then I’m allowed to demand credit later because I didn’t get in an argument with that person to her face? Cool.

6. I have very little patience to watch people argue about whether or not someone said something that wasn’t on camera. Did Yolanda say some not-so-nice things about Lisa in France when Lisa was acting like a bit of a jackass? Maybe. Probably, even. But if there’s no independent evidence of whether or not it happened, it just doesn’t make for good television. It’s like listening to someone tell you about this totally awesome dream they had, which is a conversation that absolutely no one ever wants to find themselves in. It’s almost as bad as listening to a reunion fight over tweets.

7. I’m pretty sure Lisa knows Yolanda said something nasty about her. Lisa’s not an idiot. She behaved a bit poorly toward Kim in France, and if anyone were going to say anything negative, it would have been a good opportunity to do so. Ignoring whatever Yolanda might have said strengthens Lisa’s position with Yolanda by showing that she trusts her, though, and it infuriates Kyle, who she seems to enjoy messing with. It’s a win-win, particularly since neither Kyle nor Kim can prove that Yolanda said anything. This is why Lisa is better at this show than anybody.

Last night’s episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills was the kind of episode we all expect from the series. It included silly parties, ill-conceived product launches, yelling about Chanel bags and accusations that someone had been flirting inappropriately with someone else’s (or everyone else’s) husband. It was also the precursor to the season finale, though, which meant that we only got to see Act One of the full dramatic scene. Act Two will be next week, followed by the reunion, which is really the best drama of all because we get to skip the pretense of narrative and get straight at the good stuff. In the meantime, though, we should probably have a recap.

1. I’d happily live my entire life in a tent on Lisa’s glass-railed porch. Important to note: said tent would likely be bigger than my current New York City apartment, and it would certainly get better afternoon sun. On the downside, I would no longer get to watch the dude who lives in the building behind me shower through his bathroom window.

2. Put together, the words “red velvet vodka” made me hork. Red velvet belongs in baked goods and only in baked goods. I’m from the South, I’m allowed to make these rules. Adrienne, though, had the bad taste to try and put it in vodka, the most putrid of all booze varieties. She then airbrushed a bunch of naked people with the logo of the new brand and set them loose in her backyard to rub on each other and invited guests, and also probably sent one to Lisa’s house to sit on her white upholstery. Related: apparently you’re allowed to show nipples on regular cable, just as long as they’re lacquered with a thin veneer of airbrush branding for some Housewife’s latest half-baked product launch. In a fit of brilliance, Lisa decided that she and Brandi should have outdoor sunset massages and glasses of rosé instead of attending the party.

3. Everyone was really impressed by the “living statues” at Adrienne’s party. Apparently they’ve never seen the guy who paints himself gold and stands around in the tunnel to the S train at Grand Central.

4. Marisa is surprised that Brandi thinks there’s something wrong with her marriage. I don’t know where Brandi could have gotten a silly idea like that, what with all the times that Marisa has publicly boasted that she’s bored with her man, that she wants a Latin dude all up in her ladyparts and that her husband loves her so much more than she loves him. Yolanda, continuing to grow on me, attempted to stop Marisa from publicly complaining to the rest of the ladies and suggested that she, you know, address it with Brandi.

5. Faye has invented an incident at Kyle’s white party in which Brandi slept with a married man in the bathroom. When Faye announced this fantastical tale, it was clear that none of the present housewives had actually seen it (including Faye) or appeared to have ever heard the rumor prior to that moment. Bravo, who filmed the party, also didn’t have any footage of Brandi with the dude, let alone of her going into or coming out of a bathroom with him. In fact, all they had was Brandi pointing at a guy across the room and saying she thought he was cute. By that logic, I’ve slept with Jake Gyllenhaal because he walked past me at a restaurant and I swooned. Not that I would be mad if people thought I slept with Jake Gyllenhaal. In fact, let’s start that rumor right here.

6. Surprise, Adrienne and Paul are separated. Seemingly the day after the cake vodka (go ahead, dry heave, we’ll wait) party, Adrienne and Paul announced on the trusty ol’ Internets that they are no longer, in fact, all that into each other. The pacing of this entire episode seemed genuinely strange (there had been no mention of the massive vodka part before we were suddenly there, for example), but the spontaneous separation announcement was the most random of all events, perhaps because almost all of Adrienne and Paul’s previous scenes this season have been sanitized to make them look like a united, reasonably happy front.

7. I hate the scenes where we have to watch everyone arrive at a party. I’d take Bravo’s word for it if they just, you know, told me who wasn’t going to show up and left it at that. This ain’t the Oscars, I don’t need to watch the arrivals one by one.

8. Yolanda’s husband’s previous wife, who is also Bruce Jenner’s previous wife, makes her own apricot jam. These are the little bits of minutiae that I truly enjoy about these shows. After handing a jar over to Lisa, she joked that it was “so middle class.” Can we trade her for Faye? She makes me outraged in exactly the way I want Real Housewives to make me outraged.

9. Yolanda made sure Marisa talked to Brandi about the text message, and then she stood there and made sure she was honest about it. At first I liked Yolanda, and then I kind of hated her, but now I love her. In these past few episodes, she’s proved herself to be an honest, loyal, forthright woman who doesn’t let herself be shouted down by cast veterans or people who are intent on yelling the loudest. It was truly a joy to watch Marisa squirm under the weight of her own bitchiness and then totally confirm why Brandi had thought to send her the text in the first place.

10. Faye thinks you can measure class in how many Chanel bags you own. I don’t even think I need to come up with some sort of smart-aleck remark for this one, because other than that statement, what else could be so beautifully instructive of why Faye is the walking, talking, fake-tanned embodiment of everything that’s wrong with humanity?

11. Other things that Faye thinks: Brandi ruined Adrienne and Paul’s marriage. I said this in the comments last week and I stand by it: If your marriage can be ruined by a person publicly stating something that everyone who knows you already knew, then your marriage was super lame to begin with and was likely just waiting to teeter off the precipice of divorce. Not to mention, of course, that the conversation Faye interrupted between Brandi and Marisa had absolutely zero to do with Adrienne in any way.

Although last night’s episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills wasn’t particularly entertaining in the way that we often hope Real Housewives will be entertaining – explosive fights, table-flipping, all that good/awful stuff – but it did have its own sort of charms, even if they were mostly mired in the absurdity of the show’s details and the cast themselves. Either that, or I’ve got Real Housewives Stockholm Syndrome something fierce, a possibility which I have yet to entirely rule out. At any rate, it’s time for a recap of the episode’s best moments.

1. For some reason, I thought we left Paris last week. That impression was apparently not based on objective reality. This is Real Housewives, so maybe my subconscious was just getting into the mood of the show.

2. Continuing the Parisian gift-giving, Yolanda bought Brandi shoes. Yolanda would probably be a pretty fun friend to have, even if she made you drink the spicy lemonade with her every now and then. Let’s be real, I would probably be willing to trade some spicy lemonade consumption for shoes. Everyone has their price, and mine is fairly low.

3. How many aliases does Mauricio have? Kyle calls him Mauricio, Kim usually calls him Maurice and sometimes Morris, although maybe she means Maurice but just fails to annunciate. During their post-trip conversation about listing her late father-in-law’s (absolutely baller) house for sale, Marina or whatever that woman’s name is also called him Maurice. What’s his name? Should we call him Maury just to find the common syllabic denominator?

4. LISA’S VIEW. I got nothin’. Nothin’ but jealousy, and also some arrogance, because I’ve once again been proved right in my assertion that this show would be more entertaining if it were just a tour of things that Lisa owns every week. Real talk, I’d take a tour of her cutlery drawer.

5. I couldn’t do a photo shoot like the one Yolanda did with her husband. I get the vicariously-embarrassed church giggles just looking at people’s engagement photos on Facebook, so watching a middle-aged couple in repose on a set of stairs was a bit too much for me. I’m sure a therapist would have something to say to me about that, which is why I don’t go to therapy.

6. Kyle wants to fill her boutique with cheap-looking printed caftans. Not that I have anything against a caftan (because for real, I love a caftan moment), but Kyle’s taste in them tends to run toward the off-brand Roberto Cavalli wannabes that appear to be made out of highly flammable fabrics. In pursuit of those caftans, she turned down a super modern colorblocked tunic and a good tuxedo dress. Admittedly, anyone trying to get the “Kyle” look probably doesn’t want those things, but would instead prefer a selection of palazzo-leg jumpsuits to peruse at their leisure.

7. The Return of Dana-Pam. Apparently Dana-Pam isn’t engaged anymore, but she’s replaced the love of her former fiance with the love of vodka. (Close your eyes and they feel sorta similar, I promise. Also, closing your eyes helps the room to stop spinning.) She was still trying way too hard to seem funny and carefree, but at least she didn’t mention the price of anything that she had on her person this time around (although that might have simply been a function of not having anything new to talk about). By the end of her conversation with Taylor, Dana-Pam was visibly wasted and doing what I thought was trying to light her cigarette with her cocktail. (Turns out it was a candle in a tumbler, but it took her long enough to do get a successful light that it might as well have been a cocktail.) In case you were wondering, D-P still hates Brandi, and if you can remember why, fill us in. As far as I can remember, it was just because hating Brandi was the trendy thing to do last season.

8. I don’t understand the name of Kyle’s boutique. Kyle By Alene Too? What the hell is that? It certainly did seem like the chintzier parts of her closet threw up all over the store, so at least the “Kyle” part is appropriate.

9. The back of Yolanda’s head at Kyle’s party is what I’m scared the back of my head looks like all the time. Girl, I can see your weave tracks. (I don’t have any weave, but I’m pretty sure whatever’s happening back there ain’t pretty, and I’m glad no one films me from behind for anything that people get to see. Look at me from the front, y’all. FROM THE FRONT.)

10. Kim accidentally took the wrong pill in Paris. Addicts tend to fudge the truth, but for some reason, I believe Kim. I nearly put Mario Badescu face soap on my toothbrush this morning, so I’m also in no place to judge anyone for not paying all that close of attention to what’s going in his or her mouth.

As Real Housewives of Beverly Hills stumbles toward its eventual season finale, it continues to be a show without a real narrative. Brandi’s issues with Adrienne and Paul have stayed resolved. Taylor, who we were accusing of alcoholism last week, wasn’t so much as mentioned in passing in this week’s episode. Bravo tried to get us to believe that Kim may have drunk herself to death in her hotel room, which is a pretty bad way to try and drum up tension when we all know that Kim’s alive and well. At the very least, though, the backdrop of this week’s boring episode was Paris. That counts for something, I suppose.

1. Kyle thinks her Paris bridge lock will be there in years to show the kids. Hate to break it to her, but some dude with a beret and bolt cutters is going to get rid of that thing to make room for the next round of tourist locks in two weeks.

2. Despite the cobble stones of Paris, everyone still wore heels. Vanity, thy name is Real Housewives. Lisa, notably, had no apparent problems with her stilettos. Kim wore wedges, and Kyle wore heels and complained about it. No one wore flats except Ken, who was also wearing a leather blazer and carrying Giggy (in velvet) on the group’s shopping trip. In addition to Lisa’s closet, I would also watch episodes about Ken’s and Giggy’s.

3. “Is Kim drunk?” is everyone’s favorite topic of conversation. After Lisa and Ken had somehow ditched Kim for Yolanda (a trade up, by all measures), they sat down on a picturesque Paris bench to discuss whether Kim was loopy because of prescriptions, booze, prescriptions AND booze, or just because Kim is inherently loopy. Or, you know, maybe jet lag? That’s a thing people have when they switch continents, even non-alcoholics and people not on reality TV. I hear that it has symptoms that include grogginess and mid-day nappy times!

4. Bravo tried to pretend like Kyle and Yolanda might find Kim dead in her hotel room, for drama’s sake. Like TMZ wouldn’t have had the story six months ago if Kim was dead. Or like people wouldn’t have noticed at some point that Kim wasn’t doing any pre-season press for the show. Or that she hadn’t written any Bravo blogs because she’s dead. The Internet would know these things. I get a press release from TMZ if a Housewife so much as sneezes on someone at a restaurant.

5. Kim’s crying from last week’s preview was about Lisa being mean. Lisa seemed to be coming from a good place, but she also has a tendency to mother people and stick her nose into other people’s problems, and because she’s never been in Kim’s place, she probably didn’t realize that it would be best to skip the jokes. Brandi actually did a great job of explaining why everyone should just back the hell off of Kim, but Lisa still poked around at what was going on when Kyle came inside the cooking lesson.

6. The chef teaching the cast’s cooking lesson was American. Because every girl’s vacation dream is to go all the way to Paris to take a cooking class with a goateed dude from Missouri.

7. While shopping, they all pretended to be shocked by the prices of things they can buy in the US. Those were, like, Valentino and Lanvin bags. I’m pretty sure they sell that stuff in Beverly Hills, and the price would even look lower in euros! Also, buying stuff in France is great because when you leave, you get the VAT back. Real shoppers know that stuff, and if these people purport to be real shoppers, I don’t want to see any shocked faces.

8. Ken and Mauricio’s Segway tour of Paris could have been an episode of its own. But only if they got a tiny Segway for Giggy. Also, Mauricio earned back a few points last night by surprising Kim with the Stella McCartney bag she had been eyeing in a boutique. As acts of brother-in-law kindness go, that’s pretty good.

9. Why does Kyle think that Lisa should be friends with her like the old days? Kyle has openly conspired with Team Adrienne and said all manner of nasty things about Lisa behind her back (but in front of cameras), and as far as I can tell, Lisa is still perfectly civil, at times even friendly, to Kyle when they interact. Does Kyle think she can pinky-swear to be nice and that they’ll go back to braiding each others’ hair and talking about boys? In adult friendships, if you screw up and do mean things, sometimes you don’t get to go back to the friendship exactly as it was before. Lisa isn’t unfair for not wanting to be close to Kyle. Who would want to be close to Kyle under those circumstances.

Now that the Brandi-versus-Adrienne kerfuffle seems to be more or less resolved (for the show’s purposes, at least), what are we to do with Real Housewives of Beverly Hills now? Bravo’s answer to that seems to be, “Why, go to Paris, of course,” but it seemed to be an entirely arbitrary decision on the part of the cast, based only on the fact that Yolanda was headed there and Lisa was going to be in St. Tropez, which is in the same country as Paris. So, you know, no real storyline there either.

To remedy that, producers have decided at this late date to try and convince all of us that Taylor is an alcoholic instead of a lightweight with a lot of problems who has a couple too many glasses of wine from time to time. That’s the kind of narrative arc that takes more than an episode and a half to develop (as Bravo should well know, since it’s already done the Housewife-as-alcoholic thing on this same show), so I’ve got a proposition: Why don’t we just let Lisa take up the balance of the season by giving us tours of her house, its grounds, and the homes of her friends? Think about it and get back to me, Bravo.

1. Kim and Kyle are just so concerned about Taylor. Based on Taylor’s blog post from last week, the whole running-off-to-Beaver Creek episode wasn’t nearly as bad as it was edited to look, and Kyle knew very well that Taylor didn’t yet know that she had taken Kennedy with her. Kyle never lets the facts get in the way of camera time, though, so she and Kim scheduled an impromptu drive-by intervention for a problem that Taylor may or may not actually have.

2. Lisa has swans. Because of course she does. We were fools to think she might not have swans.

3. Based on the packing scene, Bravo may know our feelings about Lisa’s closet. She could have pulled diaphanous floral maxi dresses and bright Burberry trenches out of her closet for a full 44 minutes and I’d have been happy as a little jealous clam.

4. Bravo showed us two scenes of Taylor’s over-the-top drunkenness over two seasons to prove to us that she’s an alcoholic. Based on that, we should probably haul me off to the drunk tank too, and I don’t even have lawsuits and a kid and a dead husband to drink away. Kim’s concern did seem very genuine and emotional, while Kyle, on the other hand…well, she really just sat there and admired her handywork. I’m willing to believe that Taylor uses alcohol as a crutch from time to time to take her mind off things, but I think there’s a pretty wide gap between her and Kim.

5. Yolanda and Mohamed divorced because he cheated. I think we all knew that, more or less, but it was interesting to hear Yolanda say it out loud. It gives context to Yolanda’s constant talk of how to keep a man interested – I’m sure that if you’ve been through that in the past, you want to feel like you’re doing everything in your power, whether it’s actually helpful or not, to make sure it doesn’t ever happen to you again. Slowly, she’s growing on me.

6. “I’m too old for him and he’s too old for me.” She gets flustered and inarticulate when attacked, but Brandi is pretty clever, you guys.

7. Ken has a 21-year-old grandkid. He had his son from a previous marriage when he was 19 (or 21, depending who you ask), which kind of blew me away. Everyone in that particular scene looked quite well-preserved, particularly Ken’s son. Good aging jeans in that family. Or a good plastic surgeon with a light touch. Or both.

8. Watching Brandi unfold out of a cab was kind of entertaining. My dad once described seeing Yao Ming extend himself out of a taxi in Atlanta during the NBA All-Star Game weekend, and I imagine it looked something like Brandi getting out of the van. The legs, they just went on forever. Everyone else was hopping down to the ground, she just stepped out. Brandi’s legs might be as long as my entire person.

9. When your stepson is rich, you get to go from St. Tropez to Paris in a helicopter. I would one day like to take a helicopter from New York City to the Hamptons, if only so that if anyone ever asks me what the douchiest thing I’ve ever done is, I’ll know right away.

10. Was Kim drunk? Sometimes it’s hard to tell if Kim has maybe fallen off the wagon; Sober Kim is still pretty strange and doesn’t enunciate all that well, probably because of her prescription anti-anxiety meds that I’m sure she’s still taking. We only saw a couple minutes of Kim acting flight, which is hardly a record even post-rehab, and then 15 seconds of ominous, if vague, footage from the upcoming episode. We also saw Kyle look on in genuine shock and confusion as Giggy arrived in the hotel room ahead of Lisa and Ken, who were merely down the hall and not, say, trapped in a well with Giggy playing the part of Lassie, so perhaps jet lag just isn’t friendly to those girls.

For a long time, I held out hope that maybe, if we waited long enough, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills would give us some sort of juicy B-plot to fill out the season, beyond just the Adrienne-Brandi fight. At this point, it seems as though that was all a pipe dream, and producers will be content to let us listen to people argue about whether or not a letter was sent for the duration. That’s too bad – Taylor’s destructive behavior would have been a good addition, had the notion been pursued earlier in the season when she was threatening to throw bows on Brandi. Or, you know, I’d settle for spending 15 minutes per episode touring a new part of Lisa’s house. Somehow, no one at Bravo has thought of that yet.

1. Are plastic surgery-unveiling parties a thing? Or did Kim make that up? My initial impulse is that it would work better for something like a nose job than breast implants or, god forbid, a labiaplasty, but I guess you never know when it comes to reality TV. Taylor would probably sign up to unveil her very soul if it got her some additional camera time. Kim, to her credit, is probably the owner of the most subtle and tasteful nose job on all of reality TV. Of course, when your chief competition is the cast of Shahs of Sunset, that’s kind of damning her with faint praise. But still, nice work. Despite Adrienne’s constant protestations, I doubt Paul would have done any better.

2. Speaking of Taylor. She abandoned her kid with Kyle (once she found out that her kid was with Kyle to begin with, which she did not know at the outset of the phone call) in order to hop on a plane and go to Beaver Creek with some guy she’s known for 48 hours. While calling to beg out of Kim’s pool party, she sounded drunk, high or both. Even Kim seemed pretty sure that Taylor was on something, and addicts in recovery sniff that type of stuff out pretty quickly. Taylor was already in the car headed to the airport before she had bothered to figure out who was going to watch Kennedy while she banged some random dude all weekend, and she only did that by accident while calling Kyle to brag about her spontaneous vacation, which brings to mind all sorts of questions: Where did Taylor think Kennedy was? Why wasn’t Taylor’s first call to the person she thought was taking care of Kennedy?

3. Lisa’s old house burned down. Adrienne evacuated her house, which is across the street, and then got mad at Paul for staying behind in their house, which was in absolutely no danger. BAD CHOICE, SAYS ADRIENNE.

4. These people still think white parties are A Thing. I’m pretty sure P.Diddy doesn’t even throw his white party anymore.

5. Add “people talking in limos on the way to parties” to the list of Housewives tropes I’m over. I’m over it like white parties are over. I don’t need to hear Adrienne and Paul reassure each other that no lawyer ever sent any letter. I already know that’s their story and they’re sticking to it, and they’re not particularly convincing liars.

6. Adrienne leaves spray tan skidmarks everywhere she goes. Also, she seems unconcerned that she’s ruined like eight different pieces of pristine white upholstery in Lisa’s house. If you had asked me to guess what Adrienne smells like in real life, though, “spray tan” would have been my first choice, so this revelation, while indicative of her sloppiness, was not necessarily an enormous surprise. I hope Lisa gives her a towel to sit on in the future.

7. Lisa and Kyle have the same shoes, but Kyle bought hers on sale. This whole conversation was a perfect illustration of the way that a British accent allows you to passive-aggressively make fun of people in ways that would be far more crass and obvious if, say, Kyle tried the same thing. In my personal experience, a southern accent works in much the same way.

8. So maybe there was a letter. During the sitdown with Brandi, Adrienne and Paul during the white party, it seemed as though Paul admitted at one point that a letter had been sent, before then claiming once again that there had been no letter. Brandi came with her file folded up inside her tiny Chanel bag, though, and she was able to produce evidence that she had paid her lawyer to respond to Adrienne’s lawyer, in addition to evidence from Radar Online that Adrienne’s personal chef had been the one selling stories about her. I love it when people follow my after-the-fact Internet instructions.

9. Suing someone for saying something that’s true is indeed a jerk move. Just in case we haven’t covered this explicitly in the past: By all accounts, what Brandi said about Adrienne and Paul seems to have been true, even if it wasn’t something they wanted to come to light. Telling someone’s secrets is not actionable grounds for a lawsuit, and threatening to sue over something like that is a clear case of rich people trying to use their money to bully others into doing what they want them to do. JERK MOVE.

10. Ken’s a BAMF. Adrienne and Paul really started to sputter and act like school children when Ken came up and joined the conversation. He wasn’t necessarily needed in the convo, and the gathering that he brought with him probably didn’t help the civility of the interaction, but I do enjoy that his own wealth allows him to stand up to bullies in a way that’s much riskier for someone like Brandi. To me, that has to be one of the greatest things money can buy you – a certain level of fearlessness.

11. Yolanda was too busy making lemonade and reorganizing her glass-doored cupboard to come to Kyle’s party. Not that I, or any of us, can blame her.

I swear on everything that is holy, you guys, if I have to listen to one more Botox’d middle-aged woman fight about what someone said or didn’t say on Twitter, I’m going to lose my mind and defenestrate myself. (You like that? It was today’s word of the day in the elevator at work.) Unfortunately, last night’s major throwdown on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills devolved into what is not a requisite Twitter slapfight, and although Bravo at least makes an effort to display the tweets in question during the episode, it’s still not great, or even good, television.

Instead of just complain, though, I have a proposition for solving this problem. When it comes to any particular point of contention that a cast member knows may be discussed, he or she should be required to show up with physical proof of their side of the story, if it exists. Brandi should go to all Housewives tapings with the letter from Adrienne’s lawyers. If anyone takes issue with a tweet, print it out and put it in a folder. Time for a party? Bring your folder. No folder? You don’t get to argue. The contents of my folder are below.

1. Kyle has a lot of clothes for someone who seems to wear exclusively jumpsuits. Who even knew there were that many distinct jumpsuits ever manufactured?

2. Kyle doesn’t defend Lisa because Lisa doesn’t need defending. I’m not sure that’s true, but it is a pretty good explanation for not jumping in to come to Lisa’s rescue. Kyle complaining that fighting aggravates her anxiety is worth a pretty big eye-roll, though, considering that Kyle is the captain of Team Adrienne and takes up the mantle at every opportunity. To be fair, though, Lisa seems to be dwelling on some fairly petty slights just as much as everyone else, which doesn’t help bolster her above-it-all image.

3. Yolanda has a horse. Of course she does. But she says that she wishes she had more money to get additional horses, because most of her daughter’s competitors have several horses, which makes me wonder exactly what kinds of houses those people live in. I mean, what was that, some kind of faux modesty to make conversation with Brandi the Plebe? I did enjoy the part where Yolanda called Adrienne a nobody, though. You could tell she really meant it, and it’s fascinating when the rich eat their own.

4. I could spend an hour a week simply being shown different parts of Lisa’s house. Hell, different parts of Lisa’s closet. Of course, the outdoor tea was also just as perfect as perfect can be. The table setting and staff and color story and drinks and desserts, anyway. The guests, not as much.

5. Brandi thinks Marisa should do a threesome. Considering how much she talks about how she’s bored with her husband, maybe Brandi’s right. At the very least, it would break the boredom.

6. Kyle and Adrienne came packing a Faye. Because fighting is so bad for Kyle’s anxiety, you guys! Lisa apparently told Kyle not to bring her, so showing up with her anyway is the definition of “looking for a fight.” Camille, on the other hand, came with an actual peace offering in the form of a house-warming gift. That’s why we still like Camille better than Adrienne and Faye and all of them, even though Camille seems to be making a late-season campaign for a starting spot on Team Adrienne.

7. Taylor was the first one to bring up the lawsuit. I expected it to be Brandi, honestly, or maybe Faye, but there came Taylor, rushing up to the front and trying to make herself relevant. See also: bringing up the previous year’s white party, even though she had a bit of a point. When she and her husband were merely mentioning a lawsuit last season, everyone vilified them, and with good reason, so why shouldn’t Adrienne have to answer to the same criticism? Lisa assigning Taylor and Brandi random stuff from the table to “carry into the kitchen” to halt the conversation was pretty priceless.

8. Adrienne claims she’s not suing anyone. No matter how much Googling I do, I can’t figure out what’s going on with this one. My gut instinct is that Adrienne is lying and that she did did indeed have the family’s lawyers threaten Brandi with a lawsuit. She said that she was going to do that during Mauricio’s party and in front of the cameras, after all. It seems like Lisa has seen the letter and has some first-hand knowledge of the money Brandi’s doled out to her lawyers to respond to it. To me, whether or not Adrienne has followed through with the lawsuit is kind of immaterial – if you’re threatening lawsuits and having your lawyers contact people who you know don’t have the money to fight with you in order to intimidate them, you’re being a douchebag.

9. It must be fun to have a “camp.” Adrienne says that Brandi has accused people in her “camp” via Twitter. Lisa says that the letter came from Adrienne’s “camp.” Apparently a “camp” includes lawyers and a personal chef, which means that I don’t have a camp. Maybe one day.

10. I still really don’t like listening to people fight about Twitter. There is nothing more high school than a fight over what someone said or didn’t say on Twitter. I certainly don’t want to listen to a bunch of middle-aged women argue about it on TV when I could be doing something important like watching DVR’d episode of Catfish.

As much as I usually love Real Housewives of Beverly Hills both this week’s episode and last week’s have left me feeling supremely unsatisfied. When you combine that with the fact that there was no new episode of Catfish on MTV last night, the evening’s television offerings left much to be desired. The problem with this season of Real Housewives, I think, is that there’s only one real storyline – Brandi’s feud with Adrienne. On top of that, much of the specific information for the narrative can’t be shared with the audience because of a pending lawsuit, so what we’ve ended up with is a lot of repetitive talk that can’t really go anywhere. Great.

Then there’s the issue of what we have beyond Brandi’s beef, which is…not much. Kim doesn’t want to hang out with the group, and neither does Adrienne. Camille’s only half a housewife. Yolanda hasn’t taken the bait to get in her first major fight with anyone. Taylor is…do we know where Taylor is? Perhaps more importantly, do we care? Either way, let’s have a recap, list-style.

1. Stripper lessons are a new square on Housewives Bingo. First New Jersey, now Beverly Hills. And that’s not even counting Queen of Jordan, which totally counts, I think.

2. Also on the Housewives Bingo card: handbag line. Hot on the heels of Gretchen from Orange County, we have Adrienne, who is taking the Maloof Hoof to a whole new department of a Ross: Dress For Less near you. Her logo print is in Times New Roman and looks approximately like an intern made it while trying to get the hang of Photoshop basics. I would expect nothing less from a woman with tinsel hair extensions.

3. Kim called Kyle in Vegas to let her know that she was going to get her face chopped up. Like, that afternoon. If you’re on speaking terms with your sister, don’t you warn her that you’re having surgery, even if it’s elective, before the day it happens? Especially if she’s out of town? And as Brandi mentioned, aren’t pain meds a little bit tricky with addicts? Even Dr. Drew’s buddy Jen thinks that’s not a good look.

4. Adrienne’s and Paul’s scenes continue to be completely out of context. First they were launching cosmetics, then handbags, and now Paul needs laser hair removal. Why does Bravo even bother to include them in the final edits of the show if they can’t play nice with any of the others except Kyle, and even then, it’s only for an abbreviated meal? What’s the point in even having them around? It’s certainly not because watching Paul get his back zapped is appointment television.

5. Yolanda thinks Lisa is a dwarf. Lisa is 5’5 and was wearing heels at the time.


7. Camille got oddly defensive about the whole dumb reunion team-up thing. I’ve been inclined to believe Camille in this situation all along (that Adrienne was calling people, but it wasn’t quite as pointed as Brandi seems to think it was – that sounds perfectly logical based on what we know), but I don’t really understand why Camille got so upset when it was brought up. Unless she’s simply sick of talking about it and frustrated that it keeps coming up – now that I could understand. Or unless she’s trying to avoid Adrienne’s bad side, which I suppose could be an explanation as well. Either way, Camille overreacted.

8. Ken’s relationship with Giggy is more or less exactly like my dad’s relationship with my parents’ English bulldog, Lucy. Except Lucy is the size of a third grader and there are no outfits, because Lucy would never.

9. Adrienne doesn’t own the Palms and Lisa doesn’t own Sur. FACT CHECK: Lisa owns 51% of Sur, which makes her the majority shareholder and, in fact, an owner of the restaurant. Even Sur’s website explains that Lisa and Ken own Sur with another couple, and if we want to count beans, being a majority shareholder is significantly different than owning a tiny portion of something. Not that any of that even matters, because who cares about how much of the Palms Adrienne owns? I still can’t figure out why Brandi brought that up or why Camille thought that bringing up Lisa’s restaurant was some sort of rebuttal to it. It’s good that none of these folks make their livings as lawyers.

9.5 Stating a fact, in and of itself, is not mean. The truth is value-neutral. If Adrienne only owns 2% of the Palms, then simply stating that is not mean. The only reason it could be construed as mean is if Adrienne had tried to obstruct that fact and misrepresent her stake in the hotel in order to make herself look better and everyone had just sort of agreed to go along with that, all of which would be Adrienne’s fault. Also not mean? Saying that Lisa isn’t the sole owner of Sur. It’s just the truth, and trying to use it as an insult is stupid because Lisa admits she’s not the only person with an ownership stake.

10. Yolanda has figured Kyle and Adrienne out. I’m hot and cold on Yolanda, as we all know by now, but when she’s right, she’s really right. She already has Kyle pegged as an accomplished drama-starter who’s Adrienne’s surrogate when Adrienne’s too chicken to show up and fight her own battle. Watching Yolanda confront Kyle with that reality was almost like watching someone break the fourth wall. Telling Kyle to stop re-fighting the same unchanging battle on behalf of someone who won’t even show up? Revolutionary.

11. Kim has a new nose and a new dog. They are both kind of adorable, truth be told. Also, Kim chose not to take pain meds after her surgery, which is pretty hardcore. Good for her and the new pup, I guess.

To be perfectly honest, last night’s episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills felt like a bit of a waste of time. We got the run-up to the stripping, the run-up to Kim’s nose job and the run-up to some sort of weird dinner fight between Camille and Yolanda (and then Camille and Lisa), but very little in the way of actual action. I hate it when you do that to me, Bravo. We’ve talked about this.

Nonetheless, we had a show and that means we’ll have a recap, even if it’s in list form like it was last week. It’s hard to write a narrative if nothing resembling a narrative happens! So here it is: the things I noticed this week, both interesting and not-that-interesting.

1. Yolanda loves her Hermes belts. That’s because she doesn’t have a Prada backpack.

2. Suzanne Somers. Kyle thinks she might hold the secrets to immortality. Lisa’s not sure who she is.

3. Brandi went to stripper class to get ready to go to a stripper class. She wouldn’t want anyone to suspect that she was never a stripper, of course. Also, Stripper Teacher was super excitable. Truth be told, I don’t entirely understand the Brandi/stripping student/stripping teacher storyline.

4. Adrienne, Faye and Paul all came to Kyle’s house for 6th Grade Graduation. I’ll spare you my old-lady schpiel about how celebrating nonexistent milestones makes kids soft. The kids celebrated in an unseen part of the house while Kyle, Mauricio, Fay, Adrienne and Paul commenced a team meeting and a small metal ceremony for Faye, who was being honored for excellence in service to the team. In keeping with Faye’s overall aesthetic, the metal was the same color as her hair and skin.

5. Everyone packs for a Vegas trip differently. Kim hangs pictures and thinks about getting her nose fixed (because her doctor refused to fix anything else, she’ll have you know). Lisa roots through drawer after pristine drawer of perfect pink underwear. Marisa’s mother admonishes her somewhat questionable taste in very expensive maxi dresses. During that conversation, Marisa was wearing a halter top with a regular-strap nude bra, so perhaps she should give mom’s advice some additional thought.

6. Brandi’s best friend Jen is on Rehab with Dr. Drew. To clarify: She’s not IN rehab, she works for his rehab center. I have watched her chase a junkie down the street. I’m willing to admit that I watch Dr. Drew’s show because I trust you guys not to hold it against me.

7. We got more of Yolanda’s Lessons on How to Keep a Man. She has yet to address the fact that both Brandi and Camille were in excellent shape, kept themselves up, impressed their husband’s friends and stayed at home instead of pursuing their own careers when they were left by their husbands for other women. Also, Yolanda conveniently ignores that fact that she herself didn’t hold on to her first rich husband so well.

8. I’m the only person whose mother didn’t walk around naked in front of her. You guys know what I’m referring to. Don’t make me write it.

9. Oysters and green juice are gross. Another thing I feel comfortable admitting because I trust you guys. I don’t care if it makes me a philistine! They’re gross!

10. Kim wants to get her nose done because change is fun! There is nothing objectively bad about Kim’s nose. It’s not big, it’s not crooked. It’s just a regular nose. Also, her surgeon’s desk is super tacky. Her surgeon is not Paul, by the way, although I suspect Paul’s desk is tacky too.

And that was it, really. We could have spent the entire episode going through the drawer’s in Lisa’s apartment-sized closet and it would have been a much more thrilling episode.

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