How is everyone doing on this lovely Martin Luther King Day? I hope you’re all using your day off as a day “on” in your community, but if you’re stuck at the office (or simply too lazy to do something to better humanity), the Real Housewives of Atlanta did us all a favor by showing up to work last night. Sort of, anyway.

If this episode felt like a placeholder to you, it’s because it probably was. Airing a show with an overwhelmingly female audience opposite of something like the Golden Globes telecast is a losing proposition if you actually care who sees the episode, but if it’s just a bunch of random scenes thrown together before a big plot point happens, then it’s perfect. How many of you actually watched Real Housewives last night?

We started with Kim with a gun. There’s no good way to ease you into that – someone (namely her baby daddy) thought it would be a good idea to arm kim so that she can defend her weave against attackers. They even brought the baby to the shooting range and everything. Family moment! I hope they had ear protectors in infant size. But it’s Georgia, after all. They probably did.

Our next stop was a a double date with Phaedra, Apollo, Cynthia and Peter, who apparently had not gotten divorced yet. (We gave you a week to make that happen, Cynthia. What the hell?) They sat down to eat and chit chat, and the only things I remember about the interaction were that Phaedra announced a group trip to South Africa to explore the motherland and I felt a little uncomfortable with Cynthia’s bangs. Something was just…not quite right with them. I don’t know if they were too short or too long or too wide or not quite wide enough, but there was an issue with the bangs and it completely distracted me from everything else that was going on.

Secondly, on the topic of sending the Atlanta housewives to Africa: obvious much, Bravo? I can tell you exactly what the thought process was behind this trip, and it went something like this:

“Hey, we haven’t let the Atlanta housewives go anywhere but Miami. There’s always huge drama on trips. Where should we send them?”
“Well, I mean, they’re black. Send ’em to Africa?”
“Brilliant! That doesn’t seem stereotypical at all. But make sure you send them to South Africa, there’s still a bunch of white people there. So the crew will feel comfortable, you know.”

And thus, it was decided.

Next up, remember that skeevy pizza dude who violated every obvious etiquette rule of going on a date with a black woman a few weeks ago? Well, he was back and Nene was still entertaining his attention, mostly because he’s really rich. Nene had her sights set on opening a high-end lounge for rich people in Atlanta, and naturally, John was going to foot the bill. At least until he got tired of sleeping with her, of course. Until then, he would continue to buy her Louboutins and entertain her adorable little business ventures. Nene, for her part, was not refusing the free shoes. The whole interaction was extra hilarious when you know that, in the end, the only restaurant opening that happened for Nene was a Famous Famiglia pizza kiosk in the Sacramento airport. How’s that for glamourous? I hope you kept the shoes, dear.

In a completely different part of town, Phaedra and Kandi got together to take an African dance class because Kandi was trying to reduce the size of her donkey booty. She was a little nervous about dancing in front of the other people in the class, though, which didn’t make sense when you consider that Kandi’s been on stage (and now on TV) for most of her adult life. Because Phaedra doesn’t have an ounce of shame anywhere in her body, though, she had a great time in the class and adored the attention. Kandi, on the other hand, seemed both intimidated and mortified when it came time for her to dance. On the whole, though, the class looked like a hell of a lot of fun. Certainly more fun than, say, adult ballet.

After the dance class, Kandi and Phaedra huddled over in the corner to gossip, naturally. The gossip turned to Marlo, and specifically her mugshots and that one time that she tried to stab someone. Which, according to Marlo, is totally unfair, you guys. Doesn’t everyone have at least one almost-stabbing in their past? Sometimes you just gotta stab a bitch. She had it coming. She was talking to your man and she might have bought a drink on your tab. That totally earns you a stabbing in certain parts of town. Nothing to see here, move along.

Next on the agenda was a visit with Kim and Kroy to her psychic – you remember, the one who said she saw a baby boy in Kim’s future before she had even met Kroy? She might, you know, actually be a psychic. Of all the clairvoyants and “energists” and other various con artists that have graced Real Housewives, she’s the only one who has me curious about her abilities. I mean, she predicted a baby. That’s kind of cool, and also probably a lucky guess, but still kind of cool. Anyway, she said that Kim had another baby and a marriage in her future, which I’m inclined to believe. Track down this lady, I’d like her to put a hex on a guy I used to date. I’d pay good money.

In a slightly more serious setting, Phaedra and Sheree were being no more serious than you’d expect of them. They had descended on an African American history museum and announced their arrival by trying to look under a loin cloth on a display about slaves. This is why we can’t have nice things, Atlanta. This is it, right here. Anyway, after talking with a lady from the museum and generally behaving herself for a few minutes, Phaedra sounded more gung-ho than ever about the group’s upcoming trip to South Africa. Onward, ladies. It’s about time Bravo let y’all leave the continent. Just to hammer the point home, Phaedra then went back to her office and got the Vice President of Ghana on the phone, even though Ghana and South Africa are different countries. You know, just because she could.

The next thing we knew, it was time for the super awkward group dinner that we were all promised in the promos for this week’s episode. Kandi had decided to bring her mom to the restaurant as an incentive for everyone to act like adults, as though somehow the presence of someone’s mom would make them all revert back to kids being watched by their parents. And actually, now that I think of it, that’s not a bad scheme at all. That just might work. Kandi’s mom is pretty adorable, after all.

Except, uh, Mama Joyce was the one who actually brought up the drama between Nene and Kim (and Nene and Sheree, for that matter). She lectured them about how important it was not to throw away your friends and recognize petty issues when they come up, and she also commanded them to speak to each other. After some hemming and hawing, they actually did all speak to each other and no one yelled and flipped tables or tugged wigs or anything. Maybe someone’s mom should be required to chaperone every Real Housewives party. If we wanted the show to be boring and get cancelled, anyway. If you want it to stay crazy, you have to add booze and subtract moms.

Nene, Sheree and Kim are all old pros at this whole thing, though, so none of them were particularly moved my Mama Joyce’s overtures and encouragement. Neither Kim nor Sheree seems to have any desire to be friends with Nene in any capacity, and the feeling seemed to be mutual on Nene’s part. It turns out Mama Joyce was accidentally drunk, though, so that explains a lot of the sappy emotional stuff. Once her (well-intentioned) diatribe was over, everyone started rustling their purses and tossing their napkins onto the table and heading toward the door. And if dinner was that awkward, just imagine how much fun it’s going to be when they’re all trapped in Africa for god knows how long. Just wait, y’all. Just wait.

Oh, and Marlo’s going to come. That shouldn’t be a problem at all.

Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • CLynn

    Who saw WWH after? Andy had Nene on last night and she seems to be trying to do a British accent or something. Or is she just trying to sound smarter? It was weird. She sounded like a moron.

  • Ms. Z

    What NeNe was doing on WWHL with Andy was, as we (black folks) call it, “talking proper” and it was very bad!!!!!! If these NeNe fans didn’t catch her fakeness last night with Andy the poor things will never catch it. It was painful to watch her talking and acting so fake. I can’t wait to see her on Glee because I just can’t believe she has any acting chops!

    • I saw a little bit of WWHL last night, and you’re right, Nene acted like a jackass the entire way through. I haven’t been a fan of hers in quite some time, and I honestly can’t understand how anyone still likes her. She seems like a total jerk.

    • John

      Nene came across as such a b-itch in this episode. I would watch an entire show of Phaedra and Kim- with small doses of Sheree- but Nene just comes across as so high and mighty. I couldn’t stand her.

  • Bagolicious

    As for the whole African trip situation….well…when it was first announced that there would be a trip to Africa, my first thoughts were that they would go to Ghana.

    African-Americans, for decades, have had a strong connection to Ghana. I’ve known friends my age, who’ve been going, since university age in the early to mid 70s, and older family friends who’ve been going since the 60s. I also have plenty of friends who have gone to Nigeria and have lived in Nigeria.

    Ghana is commonly referred to as Africa 101, as it’s an easy African country to visit as opposed to some other ones. Plus, it’s English speaking and has a good infrastructure. I went there solo twice, for two weeks each trip, and had no problems at all.

    Ghana has been independent, from Britain, since 1957. There is quite a population of African Americans, and Europeans who vacation there and there’s a good population of African Americans, Europeans, and Lebanese (as well as other groups) who live there.

    There’s a history of the slave trade, having been in Ghana, and there are the two big slave castles, right across from each other. So, it’s common for African Americans to make a kind of pilgrimage to Ghana and visit the slave castles.

    I went to Ghana on vacation, on two trips, which were a year apart . It’s a really great place and with great people, as is South Africa I’ve heard.

    Anthony Bourdain did a great show from Ghana that can be watched on YouTube. He said that although he’s usually snarky about most places, that he had nothing snarky to say about Ghana.

    As for South Africa, many of my friends have been going to South Africa since apartheid ended in the 80s. But, I personally don’t know anyone who went during the whole apartheid era.

    I haven’t been to South Africa yet, as I’ve only been to North Africa twice, in the early 80s, and to Ghana twice,in the early 2000s.

    It will be really interesting, to say the least, to see this upcoming trip to South Africa. However, I REALLY hope that some reading is done before they embark on their journey. And as for Phaedra calling Ghana, although they are planning a trip to South Africa, well that was just strange. But, who knows, maybe she’s calling to get some connections in South Africa. We’ll just have to wait and see!

    • PhotoGirl

      Excellent post!

    • Really great post on Ghana for those who are interested. I, too, assumed they’d be going to Ghana when mention was made of an Africa trip. I’d love to go there some day and it would have been great to see some of the country on the show. Comparatively, I think South Africa is a bizarre choice, and it seems like it was probably a Bravo decision. South Africa has always struck me as a relatively friendly African destination for scared white people, which sounds a lot like Bravo’s typical MO.

  • Bagolicious

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/09/travel/09ghana.html?_r=1&ref=travel

    For those interested in reading up on Ghana.

  • PhotoGirl

    Leaving the obviously stereotypical problem of sending a predominantly black cast to Africa aside for the moment, I will watch the travel segments of this show with great interest and a VERY critical eye.

    I’m quite interested in where in Africa they choose to send this cast. The horror of Goree Island, for example, literally brought me to my knees when I visited.
    I cannot imagine that Bravo has the courage to send them there or anywhere else in black Africa, so of course South Africa is the “safe” choice. And of course the cast will behave badly, show their ignorance (they speak of “Africa” as if it is one homogeneous place, so their stupidity is already on display, I suppose) and embarrass us all. (But all of the RH casts do that when they leave the country, don’t they? I wonder if this is Andy Cohen’s idea of equal opportunity.)

    • Bagolicious

      I’m also quite interested in where they choose to send this cast. But, I have a strong feeling that wherever they end up, they will send them to very upscale hotels, have them shop at the best shops, eat at choo-choo pee-pee restaurants and have them overdressed while out on safari. But, I guess we’ll have to wait and see and hope for the best. But, I’m starting to dread this upcoming trip. I’m sure I’ll have plenty to comment on after it’s all over.

      I also feel that they don’t have the gumption to confront Africa and its history and hardships head on, by sending them off to somewhere like Goree Island or by sending them off to Ghana and having them experience being closed up in a smelly, slave cell at the castle at Elmina, forcing them to imagine how horrible it all really was. However, Phaedra has already been to Ghana and the slave castles, so at least she has some experience with it.

      Oh, and to correct the above statement that I posted about apartheid ending in the 80s, it was actually 1994. I was trying to remember, off the top of my head, and trying to figure it out from when my best friend’s daughter was born.

      My best friend went on vacation, to South Africa, the year that apartheid ended which was when her daughter was small. And her daughter was born in the late 80s. So, I was thinking that that was when she went. But, after recalculating the years, she actually went in 1994 when her daughter was around seven.

  • Mimi

    Totally off topic here, but to assist in my resolution to drop a few pounds in the new year, I conjure up Peter’s face on the door of my refrigerator. Natural gag reflex there!

    As for the Africa trip, I’m sort of dreading it, but of course I will watch.

  • Ashley

    If I were from Africa, I think I would be offended that someone would come to my country and just assume they had a connection there. I have German and French ancestry but certainly feel no claim to those countries.

    Phaedra is officially my favorite housewife every, after watching her be an attorney, try to start this business, etc. I think that she’s crazy but if a fun, totally self-aware way. When she acts outlandish, I keep waiting for her to wink at the camera.

    • Ahot

      I totally get your point, but Africa is a continent, NOT a country you know?

      • John

        The Housewives kept refering to it as a country so I just did as well. Multiple times on the show they talked about going to Africa in general and not a specific country, except the few times that Phaedra talked about going to Ghana.

  • Bagolicious

    Ashley, when I arrived to Ghana, and was meeting people all over, they welcomed me with open arms and said, “Welcome home, sister”. It’s cultural. Even the officials at the airport, as I was entering the country, welcomed me. And when I got sick, total strangers took care of me and didn’t expect one cent.

    At my first hotel, the guy who worked in the laundry department, came to my room and gathered up all of my laundry, and said that he would stay after work to do it as he saw that I was sick. When I asked him the price and he showed me the hotel price list, I told him that I’d just do it all in the bathtub, but he would have nothing of it. He took it and said that he’d stay after work and wash and iron it.

    He returned later with my washed and ironed laundry, handed it to me, and said that he hoped that I felt better soon and left. I called out to him to give him a tip, but he really didn’t want to accept it. But, I insisted. And I was not charged for the laundry service. That’s the type of experience that I had in Ghana.

    I had very similar experiences in Morocco. I was in Marrakech for a week; the same city where the Housewives of Beverly Hills were, but they acted like idiots. The staff at my hotel, took me under their wing, and treated me like family. I wanted to go out in early afternoon to shop, but they said that I shouldn’t be out in such heat. I’m used to heat. But, they would tell me to write a list of the things that I needed and then, on their lunch break, they’d go out and buy the items and then return with them later in the afternoon, before the dinner shift. So, I’d give them a list and some money. They’d shop and then knock on my room door to deliver the items. They didn’t have to do such and they sure weren’t paid to do such. But, they did. The same type of situations took place in Tunisia.

    While in Morocco, people at first thought that I was from Mauritania. Even the Mauritanians thought that I was from Mauritania although I was very thin back then. But, when I told them that I was American, it didn’t matter. I was looked upon sort of as a long-lost cousin returning home. It was the same in Tunisia.

    Years ago, I had my DNA tested through http://www.africanancestry.com and although I have no DNA matches to Ghana, that didn’t matter. I was still welcomed, with open arms, as it was looked at as me returning to the continent of Africa, not a particular country on the continent of Africa.

    • Yaayaa

      As a proud Ghanaian, I am really glad you had such a wonderful time in Ghana. I have in the last week relocated back home after 12 years in the USA so its all very exciting! Thankfully my bags and shoes all made it safe and sound :-)

      And honestly I am glad the housewives didnt come here. Don’t need their behavior or ignorance to put our country in a bad light.

      If you are ever coming back let me know :-)

      • Afua

        Me too. Though I left Ghana very young, I cant stand anyone haven ignorant comment yeah.

        Anyway, how do you find life in Ghana?

      • Bagolcious

        True. It’s probably best that the Atlanta Housewives didn’t go to Ghana. It would have been horrible to have them put such a blemish on such a wonderful country. And If I ever go back, I’ll let you know.

        If it weren’t for all of the lizards, I could easily build a house, move there and stay. But, I’ve had a lizard phobia since a small child.

        The brother-in-law, of one of my closest friends, picked up his business, moved to Ghana, and never looked back. He’s African American and lived his whole life in the U.S. until he packed up and headed to Ghana.

  • Nancy from SB

    I loved the African dancing class scene – it was THE most joy filled moment in RH history.

  • Nancy from SB

    AND…I forgot to say, Amanda, this sentence from your blog made me laugh so hard:

    “Sometimes you just gotta stab a bitch.”

    That REALLY should have been the title! Thanks.

  • LaToya

    I didn’t get a day off, I’m in Canada. :(

  • CacklingHens

    What? No mention of the “powder in the panties day” LOL. I thought I was the one who knew about that until Phaedra said it. FUNNY!

    Cynthia’s bangs were weird. She is starting to show her age. Still beautiful though.

    Nene is fake fake fake. She can’t do anything by herself, that’s why she will drag Marlo along with her to South Africa, just like she dragged Diana to Miami. I thought you were big and bad boo? Coward.

  • Yana

    I love your reviews! I am so over the whole NeNe and Kim beef. I mean seriously how many seasons can they drag it out? They all seem equally over it as well….

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