I’ve already done double duty tonight, channeling my inner Mr. Belvedere and presenting myself with some running socks (sadly, I own no shoes with red soles) and a viewing drink so that my kaftan-clad (well, a bathrobe, but it’s fancy) self would be socially primed to watch the Southern Charm reunion the way it should be watched…channeling Patricia Altschul. I’m still upset with Andy Cohen for not stepping up the reunion game and bringing the final round to Charleston and out of the WWHL clubhouse. Next year, right?
The cast is prepping for the big night in New York City, and everyone is already anticipating a great deal of drama. Andy compliments Shepard “Sheppie” Rose on his mature and stylish attire and addresses Thomas Ravenel as “Senator,” although T-Rav claims to have no more future political aspirations. The host notes he stuck in the hot seat (and potentially in the line of physical fire) between Thomas and Kathryn Dennis before high-fiving Craig Conover. Enough with the pleasantries, Andy. This hour is going to fly by as it is!
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The king of Bravo cites criticism after season one for making the Holy City appear unholy, but Landon Clements believes that Charleston is now more welcoming of the show. Hell, Lady Gaga is a fan, and she’s obsessed with the absent Mrs. Pat. Who isn’t? Whitney Sudler-Smith admits that his mother hated to miss the reunion, but she wasn’t about to argue with shameless strumpets in such an undignified forum. Can you blame her? Cameran Eubanks reveals that Patricia would have been front and center had Bravo filmed the reunion at her home. That’s a missed opportunity if there ever was one!
Andy begins by recapping Cameran’s drunken shenanigans at T-Rav’s concession party. She admits to having to catch a ride home with the production crew that night. Cameran gushes that her first year as a newlywed has been fabulous, and she credits the bliss to her husband not being a part of the show. She clarifies that while Jason loves the show, he chose not to participate–Cameran didn’t make the decision not to showcase her personal life. Addressing a question about why she doesn’t think Shep is ready for marriage, Cameran asserts that he needs a secure and independent woman who lets him do his own thing. That isn’t going to be easy to find for Shepstradamus! Chided about their chemistry, both Cameran and Shep cite that they have a lot of fun together, but their relationship is sibling-esque in nature. When Andy asks if she had to choose Shep or Craig for a roll in the hay, Cameran jokes that she’ll need a lot more alcohol before responding.
Shep is as surprised as we are that he was portrayed as the responsible one this season, but it made is his mom happy. Whitney interjects that having a close relationship with one’s mother isn’t weird, but rather rooted in good manners and family values. A viewer wonders why Shep was so hard on Craig, and Shep produces his Craig’s List of his friend’s transgressions which Andy quickly confiscates. Shep begs Andy not to read it aloud so as not to embarrass his pal. While Shep professes his love for Craig, he also labels him a high-maintenance acquaintance who relies on others for things he should provide himself. Andy praises Shep’s Craig impression, and Cameran interrupts to say that it hurt Craig’s feelings. Jealousy is mentioned, and Craig laughs that this is the major sore spot when it comes to their friendship. Shep is adamant that he isn’t the least bit envious of his younger pal, and he dares anyone to say that Craig has more game than he does when it comes to the ladies. Whitney says what we’re all thinking–are they twelve? Who cares about “game”? Andy revisits the animosity between the two after the Wounded Warrior bachelor auction, and Shep admits that he doesn’t like to lose. At all. Everyone knows that the first person to be auctioned off has the upper hand. Duh.
Whitney is next in the hot seat, and dare I say this is the Whitney I want to love? His hair is less Lil’ Rascals and his snark is spot-on. He knows his role as evil genius. Whitney defends driving a mom car by reminding viewers that his Mercedes station wagon has the engine of a race car, and he shares that his European girlfriend will soon be moving in with him in Los Angeles. Kathryn jumps on the opportunity to remind Whitney that his paramour is younger than she is, which is odd considering his issues with the Kathryn/T-Rav age gap. Whitney asserts that his issues with Kathryn weren’t about age, but maturity, and Landon has to stifle her trademark giggle. Craig scoffs at Whitney’s statement that he was more concerned with Kathryn’s age for his political campaign, not with their actual relationship. Just admit it, Craig chides…Whitney and Kathryn just don’t like one another. Kathryn sums it up to Whitney wanting to control the only other “pushing fifty” bachelor in Charleston besides himself. There may have been a “talk to the hand” gesture. Amazing.
The concept behind T-Rav’s “Raise the Roof” advertisement is revisited, and Kathryn sarcastically mimics Thomas: “I didn’t think it would be a big deal.” Craig tries to mediate, saying that if the pair had a healthy and open relationship, the silly ad wouldn’t have been an issue. Discussing his decision to keep Kathryn and Kensington out of his campaign, Thomas claims he was sincerely just hyper-focused on his platform. I am hyper-focused on Thomas twitching his ankle in such a way it may come out of the socket and wondering how many more inches a petulant Kathryn can tip her chair back before she topples over entirely. Whitney’s eye rolls are classic. Kathryn accuses Thomas of not wanting to tout their relationship to the public because people don’t want to see babies born out of wedlock while rocking on their front porches. T-Rav denies her allegations (and I kind of believe him…only because her assertions imply that he gave a lot more consideration to it than I think he did), and he acquiesces that he never thought he’d win the race.
Thomas explains the charges wages against him by Kathryn’s hairdresser/stylist that became public days before the election. He was merely trying to keep her from filming him with her cellphone and never intended to cause harm. T-Rav also finds it odd that she waited to file her complaint. Kathryn agrees that her friend’s actions were suspect, adding that her friend should have come to her before going to the press. Landon jumps in to ask why Kathryn still keeps the stylist in her life is she has such strong feeling on the subject, and Kathryn retorts that she hasn’t continued a friendship with T-Rav’s accuser…although she is still responsible for coloring Kathryn’s hair. Andy wonders if Kathryn has anyone else who can dye her hair, and Kathryn points the finger at Thomas saying that ultimately, he was in the wrong. Cameran feels that the police leaked footage of the night in question appears to be a set up, given that the hairdresser can be heard saying that Thomas will owe her a new Fendi bag. Of course he does, Kathryn laments–he threw the girl’s Fendi down the stairs! A viewer snarks that if his girlfriend was taking dance lessons on Jekyll Island while he was defending himself against assault claims from her friend, he’d stage a Facebook break-up as well. Kathryn is adamant that the claims weren’t unfounded, and I find myself feeling sorry for T-Rav as he tries to make his point. Backstage, Kathryn is upset that Thomas is issuing blanket denials and not copping to any responsibility.
Landon’s inaugural season is highlighted, and she defines the timeline of her divorce before joining the cast. Andy applauds her as a champion for Thomas and Kathryn’s relationship, and Kathryn appreciates Landon’s ability to see what is worth sparing when it comes to her and T-Rav. Kathryn further apologizes for the bird heard ’round the Lowcountry, admitting that Landon got caught in the cross-fire of Kathryn’s anger with others. Landon accepts said apology with class before acknowledging the awkward exchange with her mother surrounding her divorce. She has moved off the Miss Adventure and into a house on the peninsula, and Craig is vying for a spot as her roommate. Craig responds to his perceived partying and slack-ass work ethic before Andy returns to Whitney’s reveal of Craig’s lifestyle while visiting Delaware. Shep commends Whitney for speaking the truth, although his delivery may have been a bit over the top. Craig concedes that he could’ve handled his anger differently on the road trip, but Shep refuses to cut his friend any slack. Kathryn counters that Shep never seemed to be truly supportive of Craig’s efforts to change. They just preferred to revel in his perceived downfall. Shep confesses that he’s ready to have Craig back in Charleston after his Delaware hiatus so the duo can get back to their old antics. Craig appreciates his pal’s candor and wants the same.
We’re transported to the ill-fated Jekyll Island retreat, and Andy probes Kathryn about how she and Craig wound up sleeping on the beach after her altercation with Whitney. Craig unintentionally jokes that they slept in different sand holes, and he offered up his Pac-Sun hoodie to keep his friend warm. The two try to justify the night, and Craig submits that he was disappointed the following morning to learn they were closer to the hotel than they anticipated. He only stayed close to Kathryn to make sure she wasn’t murdered. Andy side-eyes his excuse, reminding viewers that the Charmers were staying on the WASP-iest island in America. Thomas is sad at the the notion that Craig would go after his girl, and T-Rav and Kathryn share a sweet exchange where she assures him she would never cheat. She’s loyal…and proved as much by the admission that her former friend who lodged charges against her ex still colors her hair! It’s clear that these two are still very much in love (if they know what that is), but there is too much negative history to wash the slate clean.
A highlight reel of Kathryn’s free-for-all on Whitney is revisited, and Whitney blames her for getting pregnant just to secure her spot on a reality show. Cameran agrees that Whitney’s accusation could appear to be the situation to an outsider, and Shep recalls Thomas and Kathryn not NOT trying to get pregnant in the first season. Kathryn shares that Kensington is now fourteen-months-old and living with her at her parents’ home in Moncks Corner where she plans to stay until she can afford a place of her own. Thomas asserts that he’s paying the maximum child support in South Carolina, which is a measly $2500 a month. Thomas cites that he contributes as much as he can before Kathryn accuses him of sleeping with a lesbian wrestler and tapping her phone. Thomas threatens that she will be crucified if this continues, and Craig reminds him that they are being filmed. Just stop, dude. Cameran questions why Kathryn would continue to fight for such a toxic relationship, and Kathryn retorts that she owes no explanation for her feelings. Andy’s money is on this pernicious twosome canoodling after the reunion, and Craig and Cameran are ready to double down on that wager. Shep promises to keep Thomas occupied in an effort to avoid the inevitable.
In conclusion, Thomas apologizes for not treating Kathryn with the respect he should attribute to the mother of his child. A tearful Kathryn agrees, wishing that the two had been able to make their relationship and new family work in a more normal, less camera-filled, environment. She regrets focusing primarily on the negative where Thomas is concerned, and the couple has the most honest and open conversation to which the cameras have been privy to up to this point. Andy and the cast toast to charming Charleston with mint juleps, but I’m left with a bit of disappointment. To be honest, I wanted more snark (from Cameran especially) on the show–and cast–as a whole, and less unresolved diatribe on Kathryn and T-Rav. Also, where was the dapper Cooper Ray? Lock it up, Andy. Sheesh.
TELL US – WHAT DID YOU THINK OF LAST NIGHT’S REUNION? DID YOU FEEL IT FULFILLED YOUR HOPES FOR RESOLUTION OR WAS LACKING IN COVERING THE SEASON OVERALL?
[Photo Credit: Bravo]