I don't even know what to say about last night's episode of Real Housewives of Orange County. It was surprising – to say the least – surprising in that it featured real emotions and a storyline that did not seem entirely crafted by producers. Sure, there were moments that seemed 'encouraged' but the reactions of the women to the circumstances seemed deliciously authentic – which makes the episode both incredibly sad, and incredibly engaging to watch. In short, this is one of the most interesting episodes of RHOC I've seen in a while, except for the revolting Vicki Gunvalson and Brooks Ayers scenes.
Let's dive in!
Shannon Beador is at Tamra Barney's house looking for a confidante in a former kindred spirit. See Tamra has been down that divorce road again and again (and if this season's Eddie has any indication… again!). Shannon confesses that since their children were born – pretty much the beginning of their marriage – things have been very strained and distant; that David does not look at her with love in his eyes, and after a bout with allergies David pretty much permanently switched his sleeping accommodations to a guest room (which explains why the master bedroom looked so itty-bitty last episode!)
Last night on Real Housewives of Orange County a certain Heather Dubrow got a taste of her own medicine. No, I don't mean she was forced to wear Target clothing, I mean Tamra Barney shanked her with some petty, made up reasons to hate while at a party and Heather became the new Gretchen is the new Alexis. Stage an intervention to call someone fake, wind up in an intervention being told you're fake (and condescending!).
See, it's a dog eat dog world that Andy Cohen created and you have stab someone with storyline drama before they can stab you. Alas Heather considered Tamra her a 'real' friend. Boy was she wrong, because you can't teach an old dog new tricks. But at least Vicki Gunvalson behaved decently… for a change!
So yes, Shannon Beador and Heather think their holiday cards are on par with the White House's in terms of preeminent importance. Shannon tells us that people look forward to her card every year and Heather gives a gushing speech about what it represents to her family (Time immemorial? Neil deGrasse Tyson joke!). They both hire full glam crews and professional photography teams to make these visions come to life. I think I saw Anna Wintour scuttling around behind the ladder in Heather's shoot.
It's nice to know that I have some things in common with these two wealthy beacons of the upper echelons - because even though I take my holiday photo with an iPhone, my kids misbehave just as much as Heather and Shannon's do! Anyway, Heather is taking her card in what looks like the parking lot of a storage facility. Maybe since they're between mega mansions she's going for homeless chic?
Last night Heather Dubrow was in full manners crusader role as she hosted a hoedown ground breaking party for her new mansion in the sky. In case you didn't know, Heather is above everyone else – literally.
Before all that, the ladies of Real Housewives of Orange County continued to bicker and give their varying accounts of "chairgate". When will Bravo stop trying to make "…gate" happen? They should re-title the franchise Real Housewives Gate. Anyway, back to chairgate. UGH.
Heather complains to Terry that Shannon Beadorturned into the Incredible Hulk (it must be all the supplements!), wrenched the chair out from under her and bellowed SHANNON SMASH SOCIALITE! It was frankly alarming to Miss Dubrow – positively frightening. She's really considering therapy for the horrifying injustice she endured. True confession: I tuned out. I think Terry did too. Heather's complaints went on for a while.
Last night the ladies of Real Housewives of Orange County all swore they weren't menopausal. In an effort to prove this they all reverted to acting like 10th graders who had ditched their chaperone on the high school field trip! Woo Hoo! Let's be bitches.
Vicki Gunvalson and Shannon Beador have connected over their mutual crazy and empty love tanks. Shannon knows just how to temporarily fill hers and she's letting Vicki in on her little secret: Dr. Moon! They pay a visit to his office where Vicki gets acupuncture and demands to check her email because "work! work! work!" and relax-schmelax! She asks Dr. Moon when he's gonna fill up her love tank and he stuck his finger up her butt. I kid you not! Shannon said Dr. Moon "de-jammed it". I think I'd rather have an empty love tank…
Shannon and new bestie Vicki go get their nails done with Tamra Barney. "You need good nails," Vicki instructs. But apparently you don't need good plastic surgery or frizz free hair. Or good boyfriends. Tamra is still harping about this ugly sweater Christmas party and it was like so horrible having to wear a funky polyester themed sweater. My, my has she become snobby! Who does Tamra think she is – Heather Dubrow? Speaking of which, Tamra and Vicki complain about Heather's pretensions and arrogance. Shannon - so happy to have friends and so happy to feel loved and included (finally someone likes her besides vodka!) – decides she too has a problem with how condescending Heather is. I mean there was that one time Heather snickered about Shannon putting diamonds in her teeth.
Last night on Real Housewives of Orange County we met newbie Lizzie Rovsek, who definitely proved she's no trophy wife! Other newbie Danielle Gregorio hosted an Ugly Sweater Christmas party, which college kids have been doing since the dawn of Greek civilization. Instead of cranberry Jello shots, Danielle is serving cranberry champagne punch with very expensive 'champs', something that really chaps Heather Dubrow's notion of propriety. She's going to have to send Danielle an instructional guide to Champs, complete with illustrations.
Tamra Barney is pretty bent out of shape about having to participate in an ugly sweater affair – this coming from the woman who hosted an 80's themed Bunko party. "I'm not really into ugly," Tamra complains. I guess Tamra only supports ugly when it comes to her own ugly personality!
Season 9 kicks off April 14th. Friendships are put to the test, says Bravo, when the "quirky yet fearless" Shannon Beador and "opinionated beauty queen" Lizzie Rovsek blast onto the scene with fresh attitudes and bold opinions. The line for the Vicki Gunvalson, Tamra Barney, and Heather Dubrow pity party forms to the right, my friends. See ya on the left - I'm excited for new blood.
Meet Shannon and Lizzie, as well as a new friend of the housewivesDanielle Gregorio, and check out Real Housewives of Orange County's trailer and cast photos below.
Vicki is still with Brooks Ayers (although they reportedly officially broke up during filming) and he's still wreaking havoc with her family. Vicki also deals with daughter Briana, who is pregnant again, potentially moving to Oklahoma where husband Ryan is stationed. Tamra and Eddie juggle expanding their business and potentially expanding their family (via adoption). And custody drama.