Apologies for lateness, everyone – my morning was mostly spent at the post office and bank, so you can imagine how much fun I was having during the time that I usually finish up my Real Housewives of Orange County recap. Luckily, our Left Coast ladies gave me plenty of material during their sixth season premiere last night, so remembering what happened once I finally got to sit down and think about it wasn’t an issue.
I’ve been feeling a bit of Housewives fatigue lately, mostly because the last half of the Atlanta season and what we’ve seen so far of Miami haven’t been all that much fun. There’s just something about the Original Recipe housewives that makes this show seem new all over again, though. Or maybe I’m just blinded by the reflection of their fake tans.
We started with Tamra, who, as we all know, is now in the process of divorcing her toad of a husband but has yet to rid herself of that toad of a friend, Alexis. You see, since Alexis is such a saint among sinners, she has been able to stay friends with Tamra through her divorce process even though the Bible frowns on divorce. It’s so generous of Alexis to surround herself with such people and try to lead them down the path of righteousness. Oh, and she’s also been divorced, but the Bible didn’t frown on that divorce because it ultimately enabled her to get with Jim, her own personal Jesus. BUT WE’LL GET TO THAT IN A MINUTE.
Elsewhere, Gretchen has now added a handbag line to her makeup line, because what the world really needs are more pleather purses endorsed by Z-list celebrities. She wants to be like Jessica Simpson, but her illiteracy stands in the way because it means she probably wouldn’t do a great job starring in a late-night infomercial on, say, the Lifetime Movie Network. I think advertising on the regular Lifetime channel is still out of her price range. Not that I’m anything but thrilled by this development, of course; I consider Gretchen’s handbag line a personal offering to me from the Real Housewives gods for making me recap the entirety of Real Housewives of DC this summer.
Next up was Vicky, who chose to spend her time for the episode talking about how great her relationship has been since she and Donn renewed their vows last season. Anyone who obsessively reads Real Housewives gossip (ahem) knows that they’ve already filed for divorce, so, uh…awkward. Vicky and Donn moved furniture while the producers played audio of Vicky talking about the improvements in their marriage and how Donn now has a voice, but apparently he used that voice to call a divorce lawyer. Although Vicky is usually one of the less aggravating of the OC cast members, I can’t really imagine that being married to her would be all that much fun, and I hope that Donn gets to fly free one day. Spread your wings, darlin’!
Speaking of divorced, we next caught up with Tamra to see her go get the tattoo of Simon’s name removed from her ring finger. The one she got last season when everyone, including her, knew that her marriage was almost ever. Remember that one? Yeah. Don’t ever get a tattoo for or about a husband or boyfriend. Doing so has never improved anyone’s relationship, and it just makes for big dermatologist bills and awkward explanations to new romantic interests later. Plus, it seemed fairly ouchy.
After that, we got some lessons in marriage from Alexis, who wanted to remind all of us that the man is supposed to be the head of the household and the woman is always supposed to be second because that’s what the Bible told her. Unfortunately for Alexis, the Bible didn’t say anything about how her husband should continue to pay for two nannies so that she could spend all day getting her nails done and her facial fillers updated, so now she only has one, and that one nanny gets days off a couple of times a week, requiring her to do things like make toast and get her kids ready to leave the house with her. Shocking.
And call my crazy, but after this scene, Alexis’s existence in the rest of the episode didn’t upset me the least bit. Sure, she’s a spoiled brat with an utterly unctuous husband who likes to preach about her religion, but other than that, she seemed almost…sane? For the rest of the episode, she avoided conflict, didn’t say anything nasty about anyone and was the first person in Real Housewives history to break the fourth wall and provide a practical explanation for why they always go to every party in a limo – so they won’t get DUIs on the boozy drive home.
When it was time for Tamra’s party to happen, the first guest to arrive was Fernanda, one of our new housewives. (We won’t meet the other one until next week.) Fernanda is one of two new Housewives for the season and she’s a Brazilian personal trainer (and also a lesbian). While waiting for the guests to arrive, Tamra and Fernanda sat there and flirted awkwardly with each other in front of a half-naked bartender who was probably secretly hoping they’d make out. We were apparently supposed to think that the bartender was hot, but that seemed like kind of a stretch to me. Fernanda and Tamra didn’t end up making out, although it honestly wouldn’t surprise me if Tamra became hungry enough for attention before the end of the season to give it a shot. I wouldn’t put that past any of our Housewives.
When everyone (except Vicky, because she has a job, remember?) arrived at Tamra’s house to chug free booze and halfway pay attention to some sales presentation by an over-tanned middle-aged woman with a clothing line, things got awkward quickly. When the presentation turned to Evil Eye hats (side note: they were ugly), Gretchen grabbed one and ran up to Tamra with it, even though Tamra had been behaving herself thus far. It was unnecessary and annoying, and somehow Tamra didn’t poke her in the eye for it. Gretchen would have deserved it, since the whole scene was so awkward that it made even our most veteran Housewives crew feel awkward.
I remember feeling more sympathy toward Gretchen last season, but now, I have an overwhelming urge to sneak up behind her and push her into the Pacific Ocean. I don’t know if it’s the embarrassingly insipid TurboTax commercials or the pretentious way that she spells “beautÃ©” in the name of her crappy makeup line or the fact that she’s now treading on my handbag turf, but she seems like the most insipid person on the face of the planet at this point. And that’s saying a lot, because she was in the same room as Alexis when I came to this conclusion.
When Vicky arrived, Tamra took her off to the side to discuss whether or not Tamra should kick Gretchen out. Meanwhile, Gretchen had moved outside and in an effort to entertain herself, she decided to pick a fight with Alexis and ask the bartender to rub ice on his chest. Gretchen and Alexis are apparently friends and had been joking around with each other in the limo on the way to the party, but when Alexis said that Gretchen was a princess because she gets to sleep in, all of the booze in Gretchen’s blood stream turned on her and she took it as the most offensive thing ever uttered in her vicinity. The Brazilian trainer tried to break it up, but surprisingly, Alexis managed to realize that Gretchen was tanked and remove herself from the conversation before it escalated.
Because Alexis wouldn’t play along, Gretchen moved inside to try and pick a fight with Vicky, who tossed a few choice words her way and kept right on shopping. Searching for conflict back outside, Tamra finally gave her some and they made everyone else at the party uncomfortable for a few minutes. Because it’s early in the season, the other housewives and party guests stepped in to calm things down a little bit and neutralize the situation, and the Gretchen-Alexis-Gretchen’s Assistant crew left just as soon as they could all gather up their free goodie bags.
Just because they got in the limo doesn’t mean Gretchen stopped being a belligerent drunk, though. Despite the fact that Gretchen had spent the entire car ride to the party making fun of Alexis’s voice and how she talks, she took great offense at the idea that Alexis might consider her spoiled. While I agree that it’s ironic that Alexis, of all people, would say that to anyone, it doesn’t seem as though Gretchen’s life has been all that much of a struggle. She glommed on to a rich guy who was sick and now she makes her living with crappy makeup and annoying commercials. We should all be so lucky. Methinks that Ms. Gretchen is going to be the one who everyone hates this season.