Last night’s Real Housewives of Orange County episode was an odd one. The Housewives all got out of town, presumably because everyone, including Bravo producers, knows that sending a cast on a trip is one of the best ways to force them all to spend time together and manufacture the kind of drama that viewers love. This trip was nominally about picking wine for Wines by Wives, Tamra and Vicky’s mail-order wine club, but as with all Housewives trips, it was actually about drinking too much and arguing.

As has been the case all season, bizarrely little happened that was actually worth arguing about, but that didn’t stop things from devolving into a screaming match anyway. Everyone acted like children, naturally, and I yearned for Lydia’s formerly stoned (and maybe still a little bit stoned) mother. Can we put a camera on her and just, you know, follow her around for a little while?

1. It is possible to love a man enough that you enjoy clipping his toenails. Apparently Heather loved her husband that much at one point, but I’m assuming she was actually just under the influence of some kind powerful psychotropic drugs for a since-healed back injury that she’s forgotten about. Men have unloveable troll feet.

2. There is wine in Malibu. The cast went to see it, except for Alexis, because she had to support Jim while he opened some kind of trampoline business that will fail in three months. (Except he won’t call it a failure, he’ll call it a “strategic investment.”) Did you know there was wine in Malibu? I didn’t.

3. Vicky thought the winemaker’s daughter was his girlfriend. Even after the dude introduced her as his daughter, she questioned them about her age and their level of affection with each other. Apparently Vicky’s not aware that most people’s children don’t have to hide their exact addresses from their parents and set up security cameras to keep out their mom’s skeezy grifter boyfriend. A certain amount of hugging and genuine enjoyment of each others’ company occurs in most families.

4. Alexis thinks her husband is a business genius. That’s it. That’s the joke.

5. Vicky got teary because she had to go on a trip with a bunch of couples and she was by herself. Vicky is a grandmother. Vicky is not a lone, awkward teenager going to prom by herself. Her mom did not have to pin her corsage on her and send her outside to take solo pictures in front of the rose bushes in her dowdy, synthetic prom dress. If Vicky has not developed the coping skills to spend a day or two around a few couples of average-at-best happiness while unescorted, then it’s no one’s fault but Vicky’s.

6. Vicky has a vodka line. Raise your hand if you think it’s decanted rubbing alcohol with a fancy label.

7. Going on reality TV will screw up your marriage. No one’s marriage gets stronger after a stint on reality TV except Lisa Vanderpump’s, and it’s been established that we’re all decidedly not Lisa Vanderpump in any way. Heather and Terry seemed fairly happy last season, but for some reason, Terry felt the need to confess to the group over brunch that he had stupidly threatened Heather with divorce during an argument. Why, exactly, he chose to humiliate his wife in front of the cast and the cameras didn’t even seem all that clear to him, although I do wonder if their marital strife is perhaps put on for the cameras.

8. Vicky sets herself up to be the victim. Vicky got upset that she wasn’t being included in the wine selections during the trip to Malibu, despite the fact that she had been invited on the trip in the first place to taste wines, and also despite the fact that while Tamra was tasting wines and talking about purchasing and whatever else, Vicky was trying on tacky faux fur in the gift shop and doing her best to make sure she wasn’t included in any way so that she could complain later. That’s right: while actively ignoring all the wine parts of the trip, Vicky was complaining about not being included in the wine parts of the trip. That’s some impressive logical gymnastics, folks.

9. Can’t we all just agree that Wines by Wives is probably BS anyway? Who in the whole, entire world spends his or her hard-earned paychecks to receive the vino picks of a bunch of women who don’t seem particularly picky in the first place? Aren’t we in a recession? Don’t dollars mean something to people these days? Has the news been lying to me all along? Because if there are enough people subscribed to a Real Housewives wine delivery service to keep it afloat, maybe we need to burn down the US economy and try again.

10. Tamra seems like she’s been in some therapy recently. Her end-of-episode monologue about how she says hurtful things to other people in order to protect herself against those same types of hurtful things sounded a lot like the surface-level self-discovery of someone who’s finally started unpacking a life of weird human interaction with a professional. At least for the moment, Tamra’s shrink appears to know what she’s talking about – Tamra is definitely a person who strikes first in order to avoid being on the receiving end of the same kind of barb. Self-awareness! The rarest of all Housewives treats.

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Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • Jeloi

    Thanks for the recap Amanda, I still don’t like Tamara, Heather or Gretchen. Alexis need to leave the show. And Vicky and Tamara need to appear on Shark Tank so they can be told to lose the Wine by Housewives idea.

    • Canuck65

      Vicky and Tamara appearing on Shark Tank would be hilarious!!

  • kate

    #9 cracked me up.

  • winterpenny

    Who comes up with all these ideas…Vicky’s Vodka, Wines by Wives, Alexis Couture, and the cheap stuff that Gretchen sells. Who even buys this stuff? I couldn’t imagine buying an Alexis dress or serving Wines by Wives. Do people really buy this stuff? If there are people out there buying this stuff, it is no wonder that the economy is in the tank! The one thing you have to give Alexis and Jim credit for is opening a real business!
    I agree that Vicky wasn’t a happy trooper, but it would be hard to get past the eye rolls and the little side comments that Tamra and Gretchen are always making. Kind of the opposite of your #8, I think Tamra sets up situations to get angry at. Such a weird group…Poor Lydia!

  • Reality Junkie

    I’ve suspected all season that the Dubrows are putting on this bickering over nothing to create a storyline and get camera time; she is, after all, an actress. DULL season!

  • Camille

    Trouble in paradise. Terry and Heather’s drama seems a tad put on, which explains why he can’t explain his actions on camera (the only explanation being “I’m doing this for the show” which of course he can’t admit to, so he’s like gee, I don’t know why I did that) Tamara & Eddie’s relationship has more cracks in it than a housewive’s face without surgical enhancement. She definitely needs therapy, hope she is really getting help for her anger issues and her relationship problems and not just doing it for the show. She and her future ex-husband Eddie need couples counseling, but I really think Eddie is just over it and their relationship is in the throes of dying a slow death on tv. He’s too young for her, doesn’t want the burden of all those step kids and the housewife drama is getting old and so is Tamara.
    The business ideas are a joke! Bethany Frankel did the alcohol gig ladies and did it way better than you ever will. Wines by Wives?? Vicki’s Vodka? like there aren’t already a gazillion vodka brands on the shelves now. And we can see for ourselves that the ‘wives’ are not experts at choosing wines, just drinking them. Gretchen’s increased facial size and immobility continue to wierdly fascinate me. It’s like something looks really ‘off’ but I am having trouble pinpointing exactly what it is. The lower half of her face just seems larger. Fillers? Veneers? I’m not sure but it is unfortunate.
    Still love Lydia but think she and her husband both need to gain a few pounds. I know in lala land you can’t be too thin, but they both seem to need a milkshake or something. Gaunt is not sexy.
    Why is Alexis still on the show if she won’t participate with the group stuff? Right now Lydia is her only link to the group, Vicki is a friend only if it serves her needs at the time. Just think Alexis should bow out gracefully. Can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen Alexis.

  • Amy

    I’m guessing Heather “enjoyed” clipping Terry’s toenails only when she was trying to lockdown a wealthy plastic surgeon husband when she realized her acting career wasn’t going to be as big as she had hoped. Four kids later and living in California she knows she’s financially covered even if they do divorce.

    On another note, I would love to see Lydia’s mom meet Lisa Vanderpump – I think the interaction would be hilarious!

  • twoloiselanes

    This episode definitely needed Lydia’s mom to add a little
    spice to this group. I have to agree with you about the Wine by Wives venture;
    I’m not sure I want any of these housewives choosing what type of wine I drink
    each month. I was working late at DISH when this episode of the Real Housewives
    of Orange County aired. Luckily, I remembered to set my DISH Hopper to record
    this for me. My DVR can record up to 2,000 hours of my favorite shows. This
    makes recording the full season along with the full seasons of my other
    favorite programs a breeze.

  • Chelsea

    I’m sorry, am I am the only one who noticed the sign
    on the table that read “Wines by Wives announces it’s newest line?” It’s?! Excuse me!