Last night’s first installment of the Real Housewives of New Jersey Reunion was a wall-to-wall Teresa bash-a-thon, and I couldn’t have loved it more. Some seasons of this show have a cast member that’s so badly in need of a public lashing that it’s disappointing when the reunion is less than that, and Teresa is one of those people. Thankfully, the reunion didn’t disappoint.
By the end of the hour, Andy Cohen seemed as exasperated with Teresa’s dim-witted double-speak as Caroline was, and the little gremlins inside of my chest where my heart is supposed to be cheered when he got snippy with her. If you were expecting Teresa to admit any kind of fault or give any sort of mea culpa, even a small one, though, you ended up disappointed. In the grand tradition of reunion recaps, let’s go over what we learned.
1. Jacqueline didn’t show up. Apparently the “incident” that bothered Jacqueline happened the night before the reunion. As we all know, the Jersey housewives are already in the midst of filming the fourth season, and it’s been widely reported that the conflict is over Teresa trying to (falsely) paint Melissa as a ex-stripper by ambushing her with her former boss in front of cameras. The former boss has given many interviews backing up Melissa’s version of her employment with him (she was a bartender and always fully clothed), but naturally, Teresa is unconcerned with objective reality as we know it.
2. Everyone still hates Teresa. Self-evident.
3. Everyone is right. Caroline and Melissa both went through a very specific list of things that they had claimed Teresa had said to them before the season started, and they all sounded like things that Teresa would say. She asked Caroline not to compliment or encourage Melissa and told Melissa that everyone would make fun of her forehead if she decided to go on the show. Those both sound like the kind of petty, anti-logical things that Teresa would come up with in an attempt to manipulate a situation, but she denied them all in her highest, screechiest voice. Apparently in Teresa’s mind, that makes her seem carefree and unconcerned, but it just hurts my ears and makes her seem tense.
4. If I were forced to socialize with Teresa, I might start a riot too. In the context of the entire season and Teresa’s shift from delightful idiot to malevolent shit-stirrer, the footage of how the christening fight went down now seems a little bit different. I’m always wary of Bravo going out of its way to paint someone as a villain, but there seems to be plenty of evidence coming from third-party sources (like New Jersey law enforcement and Teresa’s own cookbook, for example) that she and her husband are, in fact, nasty, vindictive, shady people.
5. Teresa has her own version of reality that has nothing to do with anyone else’s. No matter what anyone said about Teresa’s actions or words, Teresa simply claimed it never happened, she never said it, she didn’t know what anyone was talking about. The longer it went on, the more she started to squirm and panic, and more or less everyone else was deadpan and unimpressed by her denials. When stupid people lie, it becomes clear before long. What was going on seemed pretty obvious to me.
6. Teresa thinks that she and Melissa are in a good place. Please refer to #5.
7. Andy Cohen has lots of questions about spray-tans. I guess picked the correct group to ask.
8. Remember that whole thing about Jewish people and marriage? Teresa doesn’t see how anyone would think that was offensive, and she just said it because she has a Jewish friend, you guys. It was, however, the only thing for which Teresa apologized during the entire hour, so I guess we can mark that as something of a relative victory.
9. Teresa doesn’t know how much money she owes in bankruptcy or how long she has to pay it back. As Andy so delightfully suggested, she might want to look into that. I love it when Andy gets as frustrated with a cast member as I do – it’s a great indication that what that person is saying actually is counter-factual bullshit.
10. Teresa doesn’t think you go to jail for bankruptcy fraud. She also doesn’t think that she was being charged with bankruptcy fraud, which is an outright lie that can be proved false with a simple Google search. Not only were she and her husband charged with fraud, but they had a trial date set and everything. If you were still on the fence about whether or not Teresa has any interest in being even vaguely truthful, I hope that this easily verifiable point of fact makes you reconsider your fence-sitting.
11. Juicy Joe might go to jail anyway. He was arrested for fraudulently obtaining a driver’s license earlier this year, and if you somehow missed the details of the fracas like I did, Radar Online has the scoop. What it amounts to is this: Juicy Joe had his license suspended in the recent past because of his much-publicized arrest and conviction for drunk driving. The pending charges allege that he later went to the DMV with his brother’s birth certificate and marriage license in an attempt to use his identity to obtain a driver’s license with his brother’s name but his own picture; one would assume that such a license would help him avoid police identification should he get pulled over again while he’s prohibited from driving, since the cop would run his brother’s record and not his.
You know, just in case you were wondering exactly what kind of person Juicy Joe really is, and what kind of person Teresa is for continuing to support (and occasionally take part in) his various crimes. Her Jewish friend was right.