First, a confession: I got distracted by the ABC special about the Queen of England’s Diamond Jubilee last night and forgot that Real Housewives of Orange County came on at nine, so we’re going to have a bullet-pointed recap today, similar to what I sometimes do for Housewives reunions. I’m on vacation this week, gimme a break!

Still, last night’s episode wasn’t heavy on plot, so I think you’ll find that doing it this way almost as satisfying. There were a bunch of things worth discussing, but the order in which they happened wasn’t particularly important. So, after the jump, you’ll find a quasi-chronological roundup of about a zillion things that I’d like to talk about from last night. Mostly, though, I just wanna snark on Vicki and Alexis.

  • At the top of the episode, we dealt with something that had bothered a lot of people about the last episode: Tamra repeating what Terry said about Alexis to Gretchen (did you get all that?). Tamra came clean to both him and Heather, did a bit of a mea culpa, and Heather suggested that when Alexis freaks out about it, they should both confront her about what a shady persona she’s chosen. That’ll go well.
  • Someone needs to have an eyebrow intervention with Alexis’ makeup artist or whoever that Oompa Loompa of a human being was. That’s not a good look for a grown woman. Grow that shit out.
  • Alexis doesn’t have any full-time nannies anymore, which is quite the difference from the two full-timers she bragged about in her first season on the show.
  • The OC Housewives, collectively, own all the ugly pink luggage on the planet.
  • Alexis took a white Fendi Spy Bag to Costa Rica. When was the last time Fendi made a Spy Bag? I think I was in college?
  • Alexis, who bitched last week about Tamra talking behind her back and claimed that she’s just not that type of person, took the first opportunity to do the same thing to Vicki.
  • Alexis thinks that wearing a cubic zirconia means that she’s not in danger from muggers. Apparently Alexis is under the impression that muggers carry jewelry loops and will politely ask to examine her ring before they punch her in the face and yank it off.
  • Vicki really needed to take a Xanax and go to bed upon arrival in Costa Rica, but instead, she yelled about her love tank and bladder infections and set the penis rules for the trip.
  • I’m pretty sure that Heather was ready to murder everyone approximately 20 minutes after arrival at the resort, and I don’t think that desire abated for the entire episode. I was with her, especially during the car ride in which Vicki wouldn’t stop yelling about her anus. Because it started with an A, and that is the game, DON’T YOU GET THE GAME? IT’S A PICNIC GAME, SO DON’T YOU CALL ME A HYPOCRITE BECAUSE GRETCHEN ALREADY SAID THAT WORD AND THAT MEANS SHE OWNS IT. LET’S SING THE MARY POPPINS SONG.
  • In case you think ziplining is harmless, read this and then never leave your house again.
  • I don’t understand Vicki’s bizarre fixation on which words her adult, married, mothering friends are allowed to use and when. Usually when someone on this show is an asshole, I understand why that is, because people who go on reality TV are usually unhinged in fairly mundane ways. Why does Vicki need to infantilize her friends? Just because of her unending need for control? But why pick the issue of anatomical words?
  • The frizzy hair last night was intense. Almost as intense as my frizzy hair has been for the past two weeks in New York.
  • The phrase isn’t “the white elephant in the room.” It’s just a regular elephant. A white elephant is a type of gift exchange that people do at office Christmas parties.
  • Alexis thinks that her husband is so brilliant that he can find a way to buy a car, drive it around for a while, and sell it at a profit. Actual car dealers, who buy their stock at wholesale, barely break even on demos that are driven lightly for a month or two and still in their current model year. As Tamra accurately pointed out, a car, unlike a house, is a depreciating asset. She knew that term and everything. Alexis clearly did not care to grasp the concept, which demonstrates exactly why I took Tamra’s side last week; I’ll never have an ounce of patience for anyone who can’t bother themselves to understand even the most basic things about how their lives work. Alexis’ willful ignorance about her family’s finances contributed to losing their home, and still, she can’t be bothered to do anything but take what Jim tells her at face value, simply because it’s the version of reality that she prefers and that makes her feel superior to others. I’ll take Tamra calling someone a mean name any day over that.
  • Audiences tend to have sympathy for anyone on this show who gets ganged up on, but most of the discussion with Alexis was fairly reasonable, even if it wasn’t an even-sided fight. It’s clear that the particular negative perception of Alexis that was brought up is something that the entire cast agrees on, and even people who generally profess an affection for her got on board with Tamra and Heather’s concerns. I don’t think that any cast has been so united in their issues with another cast mate since everyone decided that they hated Teresa in New Jersey.
  • How drunk was Vicki for this episode, and exactly how much drunker is she going to be next week?
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  • Sara

    I just kept screaming ‘it’s just an elephant-not a white elephant’ at the TV. The rest of their behavior is ridiculous, too. But who doesn’t know that you say ‘elephant in the room’ not white elephant?

  • Jess

    Great list! I love Heather.
    PS, how can you not be recapping NJ? I just can’t wrap my head around it. Please, please, please watch the episodes on iTunes or where ever else they are available and then do your magic!

    • Relli

      I propose doing an open post. I can understand not wanting to do a full recap on jersey, only because IRL I cannot stand having the same argument over and over again. Seriously T and her brother and wife need to put a cork in it and realize they are just never going to see eye to eye on mundane stupid sh!t and move on. BUT I too need a safe place to discuss my RHW obessesion and very few writers have amanda’s gift for watching something so brainless and turn it into a thesis on our modern times. I have tried other sites and no one compares, I cannot imagine what I will do if their is no coverage of NYC here and without brian’s recap/novellas @ Gawker of Countess crackerjacks and her tobacco road adventures I might have to do something constructive with my time.

      • Kitty

        I am with you on RHNY.  I loved Richard Lawson’s recaps in the old time Gawker. lol.  Amanda, please recap New York.

      • Relli

        YES, Richard Lawson, thank you! for some reason I thought it was Brian Moylan. They were beautiful and epic, at some point I started to belive they were true! I cannot watch her without imagining her Countess Crackerjacks antics!!

  • KC

    I understand the frustration some feel for Alexis not understanding basic financial principals.  But there is not excuse for being a mean girl.  Tamra is mean and has been since she came on the show.  Being ignorant does not necessarily make someone a bad person, being mean does.  At least being mean is much closer to being a bad person in comparison.  There is not excuse to being mean and Tamra spends a lot of time justifying herself.

    • http://www.purseblog.com/ Amanda Mull

      On the contrary, I think there’s quite the argument to be made that embracing your own ignorance, and in fact using it as a shield, actually does make you a pretty terrible person. 

      • Kitty

        There is also no excuse for throwing designer names around and showing off. This ignorant barbie then made shade at Tamra for bringing a “Lui Vitoni” purse.  I couldn’t stop laughing when the air head said it. LOL LOL

      • Sherine

        Oops I just want to clarify that I agree with KC. Also I can’t resist the temptation to add what I read on realitytea
        “Is there anything more ironic in the world than five women comprised
        entirely of silicon inserts, plastic, spray tan, polyester hair weaves,
        and injectibles accusing one another of being materialistic and phony?”
        I can’t believe Tamra who liked to call herself the “hottest housewife” has the nerve to call anyone superficial (last week’s episode). 

      • Sherine

         I don’t find her ignorance an issue because I have yet to see her be nasty to anyone.  I give you that Alexis is not “cerebral”, but to say she is worse than Tamra? The one that got Gretchen naked-wasted?
        I think I’m done with the show – Alexis is too dumb to really defend herself or have enough insight to see how she comes across. I can’t watch people being mean to her because of it.  If a bunch of guys had a friend like Alexis, they would tease him and get over it. 

      • http://www.purseblog.com/ Amanda Mull

        Tamra’s been largely harmless since her split with Simon, though. She makes jokes, but no worse than the other “funny” housewives, like Bethenny or Lisa. If any cast member from any city wants to truly improve her behavior, I think it’s fair to let them have a shot at that and then reevaluate your opinion. Tamra always seemed terrible to me, but I’ve liked her for the past two seasons. 

        And in this situation, it wasn’t just Tamra who was criticizing Alexis, it was everyone, and Alexis has said things about other cast members that were just as nasty as anything Tamra said about her in the episode. As I’ve said before, victimhood and comfortable stupidity, to me, are far more loathsome traits than someone’s penchant for snarky humor. (Of course, as a blogger, I would naturally want to give snarky humor a slide…)

      • Whitf1murphy

        You say that you have not seen Alexis’ mean side? Did you not see how she treated Peggy last season? She was very nasty toward her, especially at the reunion. She’s an idiot!

    • Sherine

       I completely agree with you.  Tamra wasn’t just mean to Alexis.  Alexis is just the easiest target.  Tamra threw digs at everyone -except for her rich friend Heather.  Wait until next season – I’m sure being nice to Heather will get real old for Tamra. 

  • Reality Junkie

    Amanda, thanks for doing your recaps even while on vacation (but you are still putting other articles on the website- thanks for the one about that Eastwood/Birkin scandal earlier today- so you aren’t really on vacation at all)?
    > As I watch shows that you recap, I sometimes find myself thinking “that is going to be Amanda’s recap headline”? (I’ve never been right even once, by the way). I thought surely today’s would reference “…the white elephant in the room”! I could not BELIEVE that not only did no one correct it, but even Heather (clearly the most intelligent of this crew) REPEATED it!
    > I mentioned in my comments last week that I wasn’t sure if Alexis is “willfully ignorant” or just plain dumb. I still am not sure. Maybe it’s a combination of the two. But a late model car is NEVER something you make a profit on unless it’s some limited edition exotic, and she is so full of crap that her argument is laughable.
    > I think Vicki was on some sort of prescription meds, mixed with alcohol. I think she may be sensing that she’s getting ready to lose her contract with Bravo and is trying to act up for camera time. She reminded me of Kelly Bensimon on the infamous “Scary Island” trip. She’s losin’ her marbles.
    > I feel no sympathy whatsover for Alexis being ganged up on. Does anyone remember in Alexis’ first season on the show that she instigated a similar “intervention” against Vicki at a luncheon? Brianna was there, they were on a trip (I think), and at the time Tamra was Vicki’s BFF. They all ganged up on Vicki (Tamra included) and Vicki stormed out of the restaurant in tears, saying she was going to quit the show altogether. How does it feel, Lexi? What goes around eventually comes around.
    > Last random thought: did anyone think it bizarre that they would all fly from California to Florida to “pick up” Vicki before going all the way back across the continent to go to Costa Rica? Why on earth would ANYONE agree to that kind of circuitous travel? Especially when the flights weren’t even on camera??

    • http://www.purseblog.com/ Amanda Mull

      I am, to put it mildly, terrible at going on vacation. 

      I wrote the Eastwood/Birkin thing yesterday after my plane landed, and then this last night, but most of my stuff that’ll go up through Friday was written at the end of last week or over the weekend. Mad Men will get a full recap on Monday because I heart Mad Men and want to talk about it with you guys.

      • Reality Junkie

        Your dedication is most appreciated. Enjoy your vacation (hope you are in a wonderful place) and we’ll chat on Monday afternoon! :)

  • http://twitter.com/stephaniepulos Stephanie

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  • NCGal

    I think you said it well last episode, Amanda, when you wrote something to the effect that in the mean vs stupid preference it is just that, a preference. I for one will take stupid over mean. I don’t see Tamara as merely snarky, I see her as mean-spirited and a phony and although maybe has some business smarts, is careless and immature in her treatment of people. That, to me is a scary combination. In her defense, she is, like most mean people, probably at her core,  scared shitless. I believe Alexis has a shot at redemption, but that would require first a willingness to topple her carefully constructed house of cards and I think she knows it at some level and is terrified. She, through her choices and actions, has created a world that is very small with no real girlfriends that would support her (Earth Jesus would forbid that) in her efforts to self-actualize. Alexis confronting her life and telling Earth Jesus to go take a flying **** as she sent him packing would be a reality show I would watch breathlessly. What I responded to in dinner intervention episode was the (ironic) audacity of these women doing any sort of “be-real intervention” on anyone. What a friggin’ joke! Bravo shot so many unflattering reaction close-ups of Vicki (Nancy Grace crazy-eyes close -up, false eye-lashes coming partially unglued close-up, ass in harness close-up, clenched teeth close-up, jaw-thrust close-up) I thought I was in an Intro to Film editing class at some third-tier art school. Vicki’s a drunk and like most drunks I know, she is a bully, is self-involved, hyper-sensitive, loud, reactionary, focused on everybody else’s mistakes, and never takes responsibility for her behavior. Even at the intervention dinner while Alexis was being eviscerated, she managed to self-promote. What’s up with Heather’s intervention dinner schmatta? And you are so right about Alexis’ “assistant’s” eyebrows…alopecia maybe? Porn star wanna-be?

  • Kmostl

    I do not understand the love for Heather. She reminds me of all the sanctimonious moms I knew whose sh*t doesn’t stink.And I watch out for her husband, the good doctor. His random use of gloves is a little scary.

  • Laura

    First I want to say that I’m 100% on team Tamra but I can see why people see her as a mean person, she kind of is. She likes to confront people, however she always does it in a smart way. What I understood from the last episode is that the real problem with Alexis is something that we are not seeing on TV. Apparently, according to Tamra’s blog, she is fake and what we see or what Bravo shows is not who Alexis really is. I’m not sure about that but if that’s true, it’s hard for us to understand because we don’t see that side of Alexis. Heather also mentioned an episode at Nordstrom that I don’t remember seeing but I kind of believe her. What is obvious, though, is that Alexis is dumb, you cannot deny that or maybe she’s just playing a character. I used to hate Tamra but this season she is my favorite housewife. She simply says what she thinks and I don’t think expressing your opinion makes you a bad person. If she thinks Alexis is shallow, that is her opinion, whether is true or not and wether we like it or not, she’s just being honest. 

    • Sherinethomas

      I don’t think expressing your opinion makes you a bad person. I think the fact that Tamra enjoys being mean makes her a terrible person. Why does she care if Alexis made a two day trip? Why does she care if Jim had an implant? Why does she care if Alexis had a nose job? Why is she so obsessed with Alexis?? I think its because Alexis is any easy target. Alexis doesnt have the smarts to defend herself.
      Tamra jumps at any chance she can get to talk badly of people. What really irks me is that Tamra told Alexis that she doesn’t like her. Who here would take advice from a woman that not only has told you to your face that she doesn’t like you, but also talks trash about you?

  • Suz

    Re; the zircon…..does anyone honestly think there’s a real diamond in the wall safe at home?  Arrogant and stupid are two character traits that should never, ever be in the same sentence……and how else would you describe Alexis.  There’s no redemption because stupid is stupid.  Period.  If she were a “nice” person…..maybe.

  • kath

    Awww, and I thought that white spy bag was the best part of the episode!  :-)

  • winterpenny

    Obviously all of these women have a strong need for attention.  So Alexis gets her attention from flaunting non-existant money.  Tamra gets hers from being blunt and rude.  etc. etc. etc.  I think anyone who would sign on and do a show like this is equally shallow.  I just thought it was funny to sit and watch everyone condemn Alexis for being a phony, when all of them pretend to be more than they are!

    That being said, it makes for good TV watching:) 

  • Jamiesmcd

    I have a new love and sympathy for Heather, after her desperate attempt to explain the play on words of the restaurant “Claro que Seafood” – none of them understood the idiom, nor did they get it after it was explained three times.

    Incidentally, the latino community in Orange County, CA is over 40%. There is no excuse for anyone living there to not understand a little bit of Spanish! And Tamra’s boyfriend is fluent – didn’t they go to Spain?? Ridiculous. Heather has my permission to be as holier than thou among all of these bimbos.

  • FashionableLena

    Just watched the episode last night, and I was apalled.  Who is Tamra to give anyone an intervention on being real?  She even lied to the Dubrows about what she said to Alexis.  I had to rewind it to make sure that I heard it correctly.  Granted Alexis is not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but that’s no reason to beat up on her.  I am not a big fan of Vicki, but I didn’t like the way that they ganged up on her either two years ago.
    I have no problems with Alexis not wanting to be away from her kids.  Mine are 14 and 8, and I still don’t like to be away from them either.  I don’t have an issue with her wearing a fake ring.  I’ve done it myself.  It’s about not getting the real one stolen.  Some things are just not replaceable.
    Anyway, I think that Vicki had some pharmaceuticals and alcoholic beverages before going on that zipline.  Or, she was just loopy from being exhausted.
    Gretchen is no friend.  She is feeling like she’s wasted three of her childbearing and dating years on Slade and wants someone to feel just as bad as she does.  Dump him and move on.
    I have not liked Heather since the season started, and I still don’t like her. I find HER to be the one who is pretentious.  Come on, someone could be living in that house, and she wouldn’t even know.
    I find nothing wrong with Tamra saying whatever she wants to say.  However, it’s about delivery.  At least Heather knows how to express herself without looking like a jacka$$.
    I can’t believe that three Housewives franchises are about to be on at the same time. 

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