Real Housewives Of New Jersey Recap: A Big Ol’ Flop

*Sigh* When I started watching the Real Housewives of Orange County way back when I was intrigued by the wealthy and fantastical lifestyles of women very different from me. As Real Housewives of Atlanta and Real Housewives of New Jersey came onto the Housewives scenes, they were my two favorites of the franchise. They were light-hearted, silly, and kooky – and I loved the genuine friendships along with the realistic seeming issues between friends.

Yes, the Danielle Staub stuff was ridic, but it was balanced by the friendships between Jacqueline Laurita, Teresa Giudice, Caroline Manzo, and Dina Manzo. I’m not sure what happened to that fun, outrageously silly show, but it is long gone.

As with Atlanta, no one on this show likes each other anymore. It’s painful and obvious that even the supposed friendship scenes are fabricated and the ladies are dialing it in. Additionally, I am very tired of the husbands dominating the storyline. This is a show about Housewives – I don’t care about your hubby. If they are that interested in being housewives, get a sex change!


Even worse is the completely overt contempt Caroline has for Teresa, based on what is supposed to be a cookbook diss but everyone else knows is really about Teresa’s continued relationship with Dina and last season’s fight in Punta Cana where Caroline’s adult children chose to get into a fight defending Teresa (likely while drunk).

Last night was horrendous and I don’t even want to recap it. From The Caroline‘s repeated rude comments, to the completely negative storylines, to Richie and Juicy ripping each other’s wives to shreds, to Joey calling Teresa a bitch – I am over it. I feel like Bravo needs to start sending me some Prozac if they expect me to continue watching this show and enjoying it. RHONJ = scotch.  Apparently I am in the minority here as ratings continue to grow and since I adore all of you readers I will try my best to remain somewhat objective and write about the show.

So, things begin with everyone recapping the solstice party. In a series of white SUVs (does everyone drive one?!) they all complain about Teresa. Caroline hates Teresa and thinks she’s trash, Albert just wants her to stop talking about it and basically stay out of it. Kathy Wakile feels disappointed that her relationship with her cousin has disintegrated to this point and doesn’t know what to think anymore. Richie thinks Teresa is trash and wants Kathy to stop trying with her. Kathy reminds us she is her own person and she is not ready to give up the dream of reality TV on her family.

Meanwhile in Juicyland where everything sane is obscured by several layers of marble or gilt all charged on credit, Joe G-to-the-Iudice is kickboxing in the garage. He probably pretends the bag has Andy Cohen‘s face on it. He comes back inside, drops into a split like a high school cheerleader and proceeds to gossip with Teresa about the Solstice fight. Teresa is animated and funny with her overly-dramatic recollection of the event, stomping her feet in her PJ bottoms.

Juicy is flippant and an asshole, per the usual. He tells us he has to poop, then calls Kathy a frog, says Melissa Gorga is a horse-faced tramp, and hilariously infers that Joe G-to-the-Orga is pussywhipped and starts calling him Josephine! Teresa tries not to laugh, but she wants to, you can tell. She also wants Juicy to shuddyup and listen. He doesn’t want to – you can tell. He’s over hearing about it and he’s over reality TV – that is abundantly clear.

Juicy is the only hubs who refrains from the Talking Head interviews, which makes me sad cause you know it would be television gold right there. Sadly, the other husbands couldn’t stay away from the camera even if it was made from impotence-causing properties.

Oh Juicy, why you so cray-cray? Kathy Griffin needs to have him on her show.

Meanwhile in a European-influenced marble mansion across the hood, Melissa decides to tell Joey about the fight with Teresa. Melissa is dressed to the nines with full make-up, and I like her blouse. Joe is shocked by the argument and frankly, I’m shocked that none of these spouses have relayed the details of the exchange to each other until the cameras were rolling. #scriptedmuch?

Joe is upset that Teresa refuses to accept Melissa as his wife and refuses to apologize. He wants Teresa to understand she is in the wrong. Melissa says she tried to sugarcoat things because she wants to protect Joe who is dealing with too much stress over the situation. The Caroline pops up to snark that Teresa won’t be satisfied until Joe and Melissa sign divorce papers. So, how is Caroline’s relationship with Dina, again? Oh, that’s right… NON-EXISTENT! People in glass houses…

Caroline would do well to keep her comments to herself, they aren’t helpful and we all know her sudden adoration of Melissa and Joe stems from her sudden hatred of Teresa. Transparent, much?

Teresa heads over to Jacs to work-out. The two have a strained discussion about Jacs role as a friend to Teresa. Both ladies were honest, which was nice, but they aren’t getting anywhere. I miss Jaquersa! Jacqueline feels frustrated that Teresa doesn’t think she has a right to be friends with Melissa. Even though Teresa remained friends with Dina after she and Jacs had a falling out.

Jacqueline believes she can be friends with both Teresa and Melissa. Teresa doesn’t think Jacs should have been talking about her to Melissa and Caroline.

Teresa values Jacqueline‘s friendship and Jacqueline doesn’t want this argument to come between them. She seems tired of the topic. Teresa seems tired of the drama which has become her now disastrous life.

While they work out, Teresa is wearing a tube top. To exercise. She didn’t think about the potential wardrobe malfunction? The trainer keeps taking breaks to hit the bottle of Sutter Home (high class) tucked in her purse, which she has stashed in the closet. And she’s wearing an “addiction” t-shirt. That’s some good irony right there. I guess I might need a little booze to handle those ladies as well. Jacs notices the trainer’s pants are on inside out. Only in Joisey! Maybe she was going to have the ladies use the wine bottles as free weights?

In between all of this, Teresa gets an invitation from Kathy for a pool party. Apparently Kathy’s kids have a big to-do each year and invite everyone. Kathy decided to invite the Gorgadices and also the Manzo/Lauritas. Teresa says she’ll come even though she’s worried and doesn’t want there to be an argument in front of her children.

The Caroline is getting a Jagguar. First she thinks Chrissafer is buying it as a chick magnet. He needs more help than that. Then Caroline finds out it’s a surprise anniversary gift from Albert. She’s elated. The Manzo spawn are all there, jumping up and down because mommy and daddy have been married forever. I’m glad these two are still happily together. I wish Caroline would enjoy her marriage away from Bravo.

Caroline takes us on a tour through their married lives. They used to live in an apartment about The Brownstone until Albie was born. Sadly they forgot to tell the State of NJ they had moved over 25 years ago. Oops! I did enjoy the old photos of the Manzo family, I loved Caroline’s totally 80’s perm and baby Albie was adorable. It was also cute to see Albert‘s hair.

Jacqueline calls Ashlee over skype. Ashlee’s lips have deflated and I wish Jacqueline’s would too. Jacqueline admits it’s nice to have peace around the house, but she misses her daughter. Ashley will be leaving Vegas to go live with her dad in Texas. Hopefully, away from her mother Ashley will refrain from more plastic surgery… Jacs is a bad influence in that department!

It’s the day of Kathy‘s pool party and everything looks beautiful. Kathy is disconcerted that no teenagers are in attendance. Richie claims he secretly told his kids not invite their friends because then everyone would know they were related to Teresa and Juicy. More likely their friends parents found out the Bravo cameras would be present and they didn’t want their children around drunken adults behaving badly. As one our wonderful Tweeters pointed out, appearing on a TV show as Teresa’s relative doesn’t exactly hide the relationship. LOL.

Kathy is hurt heir annual party is a dud. Even Caroline and Jacqueline are not attending – apparently that was intentional so the Gorgadice families could bond.

Kathy is wearing a white dress, which seems like an omen this party will go badly based on last week’s all-white dress party drama. Also, it wasn’t a very flattering dress.

The Gorgas show up first which gives Richie and Joey the perfect opportunity to talk trash about Teresa. Richie is hopeful that if anything happens at the party, the kids will be kept out of it. He also suggests Teresa and Joe get therapy, which I agree they need. They probably also need a lobotomy and some mood stabilizers. Is there a a doctor in the house?!

Joe says his parents are old-school Italian and they wouldn’t be ok with therapy. Just like they’re obviously not ok with broadcasting their family issues on national television. He says their way is to just stop talking to the person. Melissa agrees she thinks it would be weird for siblings to get therapy. What do you think?

Teresa bursts forth into the party wearing a space-dyed muu-muu of some sort. Richie announces: “Here comes drama.”  Juicy has stayed home. The first moment of drama comes over drinks. Despite Kathy‘s spread, Teresa wants a margarita. No one wants to make a frozen drink when there is sangria, wine, whatever. Melissa snips, “she’s easy” and fine with whatever in pointed opposition to Teresa’s request. Melissa explains Teresa makes her angrier than anyone and Teresa says she overlooks a lot of Melissa’s comments.

It turns out Antonia and Audriana are wearing the same swimsuit. Terlissa seem to think it’s really cute and start taking photos. Behind the scenes they go back and forth about how Melissa copies Teresa. Melissa insists she does no such thing. I think cute little girl clothes are just cute little girl clothes, and they live in a smallish community. Personally, this further affirms that Teresa and Melissa are the same person trapped in different bodies ala some sort of Lifetime Made-For-TV movie I need to see immediately.

Then comes the greatest moment of last night. Rosie‘s bellyflop. Also Rosie’s swimsuit. LOL. Rosie plans to do a dive, all the kids scamper out of the way, she gets on the diving board and just belly flops into the water. It was HILARIOUS! Rosie is one of the great remaining fun moments of this show. Also, fun – Jacs drunk trainer.

Since everyone is getting along, Joey decides he wants to talk to Teresa about the solstice fight. Cause at a party is totally the right place! Oh, the cameras were there. That’s how reality TV works, I forgot.

Kathy had been doing a great job keeping things positive, including everyone, and focusing on the children. These children love each other and clearly their aunts and uncles love them too. It’s very sad no one can just get along.

Joey is tired of arguing and claims he wants to fix it. Things start out good and then Teresa immediately burst into tears. Gosh – this is so hard to watch. This is so real and so heart-breaking to see a family in this situation. Teresa feels like she can never say the right thing and their trust is broken since Joe betrayed her confidences. Which was probably the wrong thing to say – husbands and wives tell each other things. In my mind, it’s normal.

And then the argument begins. Round and round and round like a tornado. Joe insists that Teresa tells Juicy everything – which I agree she probably does – cause it’s NORMAL! Teresa thinks Joe needs to start acting like he loves her again and come over all the time, like he did before he married. Joey claims Juicy has always hated him.

Teresa is perplexed by how much things have changed since Joey got married. Which I find odd. She admits she always put Joey before Juicy, but once Melissa came into the picture Joe distanced himself. She says Gia once hated Melissa. Melissa is right – they are both arguing the same sides of the coin, but they both think they’re on opposite ends of the spectrum.

Joe wants her to communicate with him and leave Melissa alone. Teresa says Joe and her parents are all she has. Teresa needs to and MUST accept Melissa as her brother’s wife – whether she likes her not. They argue about whether or not Teresa ever considered Jacs and Caroline family, Teresa says she doesn’t need them, she doesn’t need anyone. And she did say Jacs and Caroline were “like family,” I consider that fine. Close friends are like family.

Joe wants Teresa to be “normal” which is a bit rich considering the source! Plus, Teresa’s abnormal nuttiness is one of her appeals. LOL. Joey thinks Teresa has gotten lost and needs to fall. Somehow things descend into bedlam. She calls him the “meanest brother ever.” Then he says he is an Angel of God. Bwahahahahahaha! Does God know this? Do Angels from God call their sisters bitches? Maybe it’s part of the job requirement?

The problem is both of these people hate their sibling’s spouse. Joe calls Teresa a “bitch” and storms away. Teresa gets angry and decides to leave. She calls this situation “embarrassing” and “disgusting.” Everyone is worried about the kids and trying to reassure them that everything is OK as the Gorgadices both flee the party. And did Teresa calls Melissa a C-U-Next-Tuesday? Ouch!

Next Week: Field Day descends into mayhem over Gia. Poor Gia.