And just like that, we had a season finale. Real Housewives of Orange County simply up and quit on us, like a supermarket checkout girl who had argued with a customer over her last coupon. The show stormed off its season in a similarly spectacular fashion, but not “spectacular” in a good way. “Spectacular” in a “full of spectacle” way, meaning that there was lots of yelling and screaming and some evil person made Lydia’s adorable stoner mother cry. It was not a high point for pop culture, but it was decent television at times.
1. I have blocked out last week’s episode in its entirety. Don’t remind me of any of that helicopter-enabled unpleasantness, please.
2. Except for Kent Smiley. SWAMP SLADE!
3. I really want to like Heather, but I just don’t. I want to believe that she’s in the right with her Malibu Country fight with Gretchen, but when they sat down to talk about it last night, Gretchen actually sounded far more calm, rational and fair than Heather when they were discussing who was pursuing what. Sure, I believe that Gretchen would be an actress in a second given the opportunity, but if Heather was really secure in her status as a competent actress who occasionally gets a role, she wouldn’t have to rub anything about it in Gretchen’s face. Mostly, though, I wish they’d both just shut up about it because it’s not a compelling story line in any way. Who cares if Gretchen’s “owning” the fact that she was fiddling with her phone during Heather’s taping? Raise your hands. I’m waiting.
4. Earth Jesus has to “allow” Alexis to learn things. He’s got a lot of years and knowledge on her, you know, and sometimes she’s just not as smart as Earth Jesus, but Earth Jesus knows that and he is benevolent, so he lets her stick her finger in a light socket every now and then so that she remembers that it’s bad.
5. Tamra might have become too nice. She even apologized to Jim for saying mean things about him, and if ever any Real Househusband has earned it, it’s Jim, he of the chin implants and trampoline parks and gross paternalism toward his sweet, dim wife.
6. Ryan’s freak-out over Lydia’s mom was…uh… Frankly, it was kind of frightening. There is perhaps no gentler, less threatening person who has ever entered the Real Housewives universe than Lydia’s adorable, fairy dust-spreading mother. We know Ryan’s a little intense, and being an active duty Marine will certainly make someone a stickler for the rules, but even considering that, his reaction was totally over-the-top and inappropriate. If you get dozens of people drunk at your house, someone might lay down on the couch without taking their shoes off. Them’s the breaks of party-hosting.
From the audio that we heard, Lydia’s mom cracked a joke about fairy dust, asked who he was and then apologized for upsetting him. She didn’t raise her voice first and she wasn’t rude, plus she asked him to stop cursing at her and he wouldn’t. What kind of man treats a woman that way, particularly a woman who’s a guest in the house and also obviously a generation older than he is? He also doesn’t own the place, although he slipped and almost said he did, and even if he did…she put her shoes on the couch. There’s a way to handle that which doesn’t even involve yelling or kicking people out. Multiple ways, even.
While Lydia and her mom were outside and upset, Ryan was out back, acting erratic and yelling profanity. Thankfully, Vicky stepped up and was a good hostess and calmed down Lydia and her mom, but that left the issue of Ryan himself. He had only become more resolute in his opinion of Lydia’s mom and her actions, which didn’t exactly line up with what the audio tape told us about the situation. Part of the moral superiority that this young man obviously feels should include being too much of a man to call a woman a bitch.
7. I’m kind of concerned for Brianna. What happens if she, like, leaves a wet towel on the floor?
8. Gretchen mocking Vicki’s willingness to shill her products on the show was rich irony. I wish Gretchen knew what irony is.
9. Lydia for Mayor of Orange County! Although she and her mother were wronged by Ryan, they both got over it in a timely manner and didn’t try to suck the whole party into their attention vortex. Then, when Slade complained that he has been wronged by all of the women whose looks he has ever insulted, she stepped in to remind him that he said nasty things about her without any prompting at all. Which is true – all Lydia did was have the temerity to show up and not immediately give Slade a boner, which is an offense that can’t go by without him commenting on it, always.
10. The updates! Vicki and Brooks are off again, for now. Ryan’s in Afghanistan and Brianna is going to move out of Vicki’s house with the bambino. Malibu Country got cancelled. Tamra’s fitness studio is open and she and Eddie are getting a mini-spinoff for the wedding. And that’s it, because my DVR cut off. I’m guessing that Slade and Gretchen’s end-of-season update was deliciously snarky – someone fill me in, please.