Admit it. You’ve been waiting on Thomas Ravenel’s epic dinner party since it was first teased on this season’s Southern Charm premiere. Was it everything you hoped it would be? That and more, of course! Regardless of what is going on now between T-Rav and Kathryn Dennis, last night the aging playboy had his baby mama’s back…or does he just love to hijack his own event–remember that Glass Menagerie speech?
As the cast greets the new day on last night’s episode, Whitney Sudler-Smith gifts mother Patricia Altshul with a grand-dog. She’s thrilled with the new pooch and doesn’t seem to realize that in these situations, puppies are the universal substitute for someone who isn’t quite ready for the real thing. Maybe someone should have bought Kathryn and Thomas a kennel? Craig Conover pops in to visit Kathryn and meet St. Julien Rembert who is merely a week old. She asks him which parent Julien favors more, but Craig thinks all babies look identical. Plus, he’s not sure who the father is to even be able to make that assessment. Man, with friends like Craig, who needs enemies? So much for being Kathryn’s biggest cheerleader! Kathryn reveals that two babies are easier than she’d anticipated, and the relationship she’s always dreamed of with T-Rav is finally within reach.
Lunching with JD, Thomas recalls Mrs. Pat’s celebratory supper, and he didn’t appreciate being put in the hot seat about Julien’s paternity. JD nods and smiles, always the supportive friend, but he still staunchly believes another paternity test is in order. Of course, he also thinks that Thomas would raise that child as his own even if he knew otherwise. Thomas shares his plans for an intimate party to honor his son’s birth, and he’s leaving Whitney and Patricia off the guest list as an olive branch to Kathryn. However, Landon Clements will make the cut, as Thomas is optimistic she and Kathryn can squash any ill-will and move forward as friends. Speaking of Landon, she’s having vino with her sister Bam and lamenting about her business meeting gone sour. She is the oldest sister, but feels she’s playing catch-up with her younger siblings when it comes to career and families. All I can think of is the episode of Friends when the group is in Vegas and Joey finds his identical hand twin. Landon and Bam are identical voice twins. If I close my eyes, I can’t, like, figure out which one is, like, nervously laughing and talking. They have, like, the exact. Same. Like. Voice.
The conversation turns to Landon’s confession of love for Shepard “Shep” Rose, and across town, Shep is having the same discussion with Cameran Eubanks. He recaps his chat with Landon to Cameran, and she’s not surprised in the least. Cameran’s been telling him for years that Landon is ga-ga for him. Bam asks Landon if she’s attracted to him, and sure, he’s handsome, and he’s nice, and they aren’t getting any younger. Cameran also questions Shep whether Landon tickles his pickle. Maybe? Once he pulled her into a closet for a make-out session (girls dig spontaneity), but he thinks sex would change their dynamic. Landon doesn’t strike him as a girl who would be down with a casual hook-up while he figures out what he wants. Cameran stops chewing long enough to explain to him that most girls aren’t down with that scenario. Shep seems surprised by this insight.
Thomas drops by Kathryn’s I’On digs to spend some quality time with Julien and see Kensie’s completed nursery. He and Kathryn interact lovingly, and Thomas enjoys the prospect of imagining the foursome as a family. It’s much better than the alternative that has been their normal for almost three years. T-Rav summons Dierdre, the new night nurse–“she’s amazing!” they both gush (she’ll never be Dawn, traitors!!)–so the pair can discuss his upcoming gathering. As Thomas spouts off the guest list, Kathryn is pleased to learn that Whitney and Patricia are absent due to their bad-mouthing. Thomas is feeling pleased until he announces Landon’s invitation. Wait, what? Kathryn pointedly reminds him that he excluded his best friend and his best friend’s mother because they hate her, yet he wants to include a girl who has been nothing but malicious to her. She stresses to him that she’s never been anything but kind to Landon and is undeserving of Landon’s retaliation (God love the editor who spliced in a clip of Kathryn flipping off Landon from last season!).
Kathryn digs her heels in the sand and refuses to attend any gathering that includes Landon, and Thomas plans his escape. He adores Landon, and he’s not willing to budge. As she pleads her case, T-Rav plays dumb. The pair starts arguing and he threatens to cancel the event. His efforts to storm out of Kensie’s room are thwarted when Kathryn blocks the door. No worries! He’ll just jump out of the window! Realizing he’s on the second floor, Thomas sheepishly returns to inside the house. Kathryn realizes the couple is *thisclose* to retreating back to their crazy ways, and she’s *thisclose* to getting the relationship she desires from T-Rav. She quickly diffuses the situation by transforming into the bigger person. If it’s important to Thomas that Landon is invited, she’s supportive of his decision.
Cameran swings by Craig’s house to dish about the group’s latest drama while showing off some new bling courtesy of husband Jason. Craig wonders if baby-gate is taking a toll on the newlyweds, but Cameran counters that she’s been going to therapy to face her fears. She also points out that she told Jason long before he proposed that if her not wanting kids was a deal-breaker in their relationship, he shouldn’t pop the question. That said, she’s not as opposed to the idea of children as she once was. Sidebar, she looks gorgeous, and I want her hair. The chatter turns to Kathryn and Thomas, and Cameran insists she’s not anti-the couple, but she needs to see them consistently not acting five-star insane. Craig is Kathryn’s bestie in this scene, and he hopes that Cameran can get to know the calm, mature, normal Kathryn he’s been hanging out with of late. He’s such a mediator
once he passes the bar.
Cooper Ray and Kathryn are shopping Gwynn’s for a fabulous ensemble for Kathryn to wear to T-Rav’s party. As she’s no longer a Gumby clone after giving birth to two children, she’s ready to embrace her curves. The duo is interrupted by a call from Jennifer Snowden who wants to meet her bestie’s newest addition. Kathryn is polite, yet curt, with her avoidance. If Thomas doesn’t want Jennifer in her life, she’s willing to cut ties. Kathryn relays to Cooper that Thomas thinks Jennifer is a bad influence so she’s trying to distance herself, to which he snarks, “You think?” before dressing her in caftan from the butler’s private collection. Kathryn feels a tad too Cruella DeVille so it’s back to the designer racks. Don’t forget the cor-SET!
Across town, a similarly clad Pat (seriously, navy caftans must be so in) is hosting a navy clad Landon. Over martinis, Patricia needles Landon about the rumors that she’s an item with Shep. She advises Landon to channel her inner vamp and to forget about the turmoil caused by her divorce. Onward and upward! Landon wipes away tears and cites that sexiness makes her uncomfortable. Hogwash, admonishes Patricia. In her day, girls didn’t go out in public without a full face and fancy dress. Toss the flip-flops and rash guards and make Shep yours, the grand dame asserts! And heck, if Shep isn’t the one, perhaps Landon should set her sights on T-Rav. He’s a rich and attractive older man. Landon isn’t opposed, except for the idea of having to co-parent with Kathryn.
On Hilton Head, Shep is meeting with his absolutely adorable mother. As an editing aside, Shep noted on Twitter that this scene occurred AFTER the Southern version of Bravo’s dinner party from hell. Shep adores his parents, and he wants to please them with his potential mate. His siblings are settled and raising families, and he feels a bit behind. He shares Landon’s revelation with his mom who isn’t all that shocked. He thinks the pair is perfect on paper, but they are lacking a spark. His mother reminds him that the spark can ignite later in their relationship, but at the end of the day, she just wants happiness for her son. If that means Shep marries and has the most adorable family, amazing, but if he’s a consummate bachelor, she’s happy if he’s happy. Can Mrs. Rose be a staple next season? Back in Charleston, the gang is preparing for Thomas’ dinner party. Landon has dolled up a bit more than normal in hopes of catching Shep’s eye. At his new home, Thomas is channeling his inner Martha Stewart, and he’s excited to showcase his house, as well as Kathryn’s latest refined demeanor.
As the crew convenes on Thomas’ abode, Kathryn braces herself with a bourbon as Thomas leads a tour. Craig, Naomie, and Landon arrive, and Kathryn keeps her distance. Both she and Shep are avoiding an awkward moment with Landon. Cooper encourages Kathryn to be the bigger person and greet Landon, but she sneaks out to have a smoke and confide in Elizabeth. Cameran enters, and Kathryn is proud of her ability to grin and bear it amidst her haters. Once the group is seated, Thomas vomits his words of wisdom on his guests. He thanks his friends for supporting his young family with Kathryn. When Shep interrupts with a joke about T-Rav always referring to himself in third person, Thomas becomes more animated. Is it the Sharks and Jets? He’s graduated from The Glass Menagerie to West Side Story, it seems. Sorry, Tennessee Williams!
The guests giggle as Thomas offers up his sentiments. He praises Kathryn for her strength and growth since bringing Julien into the world before quickly turning on Cameran for being overly self-righteous and judgmental. Next, Thomas chides Craig for being a great guy who pretends to be someone he’s not. Shep interjects that Craig needs more of a ribbing, but Craig is a-okay with T-Rav’s roving assessment. Now in the hot seat, Shep blushes when Thomas urges him to check out the rusty diamond in his backyard instead of trying bed all of Charleston. Landon is giggling at this revelation until Thomas accuses Landon of being vindictive to his baby mama. Kathryn feels vindicated, but she can’t relish in that feeling for very long. Both Craig and Cooper attempt to diffuse the situation before Shep jumps in to remind Thomas that T-Rav has reveled in his friendship with Landon. A switch flips, and T-Rav goes on an insulting attack against Shep, complete with name-calling and insults. As Camaran and Landon make their escape, Cooper tries to calm Thomas who wants to engage Shep, who refuses to be engaged (because 1. he won’t take part in such silly nonsense; and 2. engage? As in a ring? Hell no, son!) by his host’s erratic behavior.
Craig ushers Shep out and the rest of the dinner party follows. JD believes that Thomas’ intentions were pure in defending Kathryn, but things went quickly awry. He shields his wife on the way out as Kathryn and Landon exchange words. Landon cites she’s never been anything but kind to Kathryn and Kathryn retorts that she sounds like a dolphin (I swear, I’m not laughing at any of this madness). Cooper is still trying his damnedest to calm the beast that T-Rav has become, as the majority of this guests pile onto a golf cart. Landon slams the gas (or battery?) on her cart as T-Rav lunges at passenger Shep. Cooper grabs Thomas and forces him back inside. Thank goodness someone is trying to contain the mele!
TELL US – THOUGHTS ON THE DINNER PARTY FROM HELL?
Photo Credit: Bravo & Paul Cheney for Bravo