On last night’s Real Housewives Of New Jersey, the ladies traveled to a spa where Siggy Flicker counseled them into adulting when it comes to problem solving and relationships. It kinda worked – although Jacqueline Laurita‘s mental state seems more precarious than ever.
The new Teresa Giudice goes on vacation with one bag. The same old Melissa Gorga goes on vacation with five bags. Or maybe Melissa has become the old Teresa? I honestly can’t remember – a 1000 images of squealing, sequined suitcases swirl before me and blend together into one obnoxious monokini fashion show of Housewives in Hotels. Maybe I need an appointment with Dr. Siggy?
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The problem, other than how to cram Melissa’s many bags into Dolores Catania‘s champagne gold Range Rover, is whether Teresa will be able to get along with Jacqueline for two days. Teresa vows to take a backseat to drama, but is not looking forward to spending her first days of re-wine consuming freedom with the first person who’s been mean to her since she got out of the slammer.
Meanwhile, in Siggy’s white range rover, Jacqueline promises to “speak only when spoken to” (like a child visiting a great aunt) but vows, “If Teresa makes a dig, I’ll bury her.” That sounds like someone prepared for trench warfare, not mud wraps.
Melissa, Dolores, and Teresa arrive first and immediately scrabble for the best rooms. Teresa leaves the room in the basement for Jacqueline. As she should. Luckily, Jacqueline wants that one – easier to bury Teresa in!
Jacqueline is distracted by the hot guy handing out champagne and focused on how to ignore Teresa completely while staring right at her, not rooms. Talk about awkward – as the other women greet each other, Teresa remains seated on the sofa like a champagne statue, and Jacqueline casually glances over her like, ‘Oh that one’s no work of art – more like a piece of work!’
Siggy intervenes by deciding the only way Teresa and Jacqueline can ever move forward is to never, ever, ever mention their past again, so she reintroduces Teresa to Jacqueline as if it’s the first time they’ve met. Role-playing like a champ, Jacqueline actually offered Teresa her hand to shake. Teresa is weirded out – she was expecting a least a phony hug.
Dinner is a predictably uncomfortable. Go figure – considering two of the five people at the table are behaving like sulky teenagers forced to attend a fancy supper with their parents. Luckily, the ladies manage to connect over sharing their past hardships, which actually begins with Jacqueline confessing how broke they are while Chris starts his new company alongside treating Nick’s autism. Teresa is shocked to realize that during all the years when she was focused solely on herself and living in Teresa’s world as a Teresa-obsessed girl, other people were having issues too. Imagine that! So like the whole world isn’t about Tre?! Mindf–k!
Siggy reveals that after her divorce she had to give up her country club membership – the horror! – and move into a duplex with her parents. Then she met Michael, who was Joe Giudice broke, but Siggy believed in him and now she’s sitting on a beach, wealthy and still in love, but she paid the price by ignoring Kiddush!
Melissa shares that after they lost everything in 2008, they were so broke Poison wouldn’t let her spend $50 to renew her Costco membership. Luckily, Real Housewives Of New Jersey swept into their lives and saved everything! Teresa readily admits she’s too good for Joe, but stays with him because she loves him. Siggy cries over the women coming together and proposes a toast to survivors. From there forward the weekend is pretty much love, light, and Laurita histrionics.
Outside while they make s’mores, Melissa explains why being a working woman is important to her, but she struggles missing out on activities with her kids. Yes Melissa – welcome to reality. The real world most women live in. Nice to meet you and pleased you could finally semi-join us – although your vanity business hardly counts as needing to work to pay tuition and put food on the table. Baby steps.
Teresa agrees it’s good Melissa is working because look at her – she never thought she would be in her situation, but look what happened! When you marry a Joe, you lose every cent! Back home, Poison burns microwave popcorn and chicken fingers and I see a glimpse of the Gorga children in a post-apocalyptic world ala The Terminator.
At the vacation home, the ladies decide to lighten the mood by playing ‘Wine-pong’ in PJs and pigging out on junk food. It was just what the TV doctor ordered to reconnect Teresa and Jacqueline to what they do best: have the combined maturity of a 12-year-old!
They FaceTime Juicy and pretend Teresa and Jacqueline are fighting so he needs to come pick her up to rescue her from “that bitch Jacqueline!” Jacqueline laughs hysterically as she shoves the phone down her shirt to show Juicy her fake boobs. He’s confused – as one should be. But it’s all in fun – as a girls spa weekend should be.
The next morning over gourmet breakfast, the ladies remain in good spirits, until Melissa whips out a video of Gino’s wrestling match, which she missed to be there. As the ladies share about missing their kids milestones: Teresa for prison, everyone else for work and other obligations, Jacqueline flees the table and bursts into tears over Nick. It’s understandable. She’s stressed knowing her son will likely never do these things. And those are fair concerns, but what about CJ? Doesn’t he play a sport? Have milestones and accomplishments? He always gets the shaft – Jacqueline barely even mentions him!
All the women comfort Jacqueline about how special Nick is – even Teresa. This leads Jacqueline to finally believe Teresa is sincere about being friends. Teresa admits to Dolores that she never imagined how much Jacqueline has been struggling and maybe some of her outbursts were related to personal issues. Imagine – Teresa saying this. The reckoning has come. Hide.
After that it’s time for pina coladas at a gorgeous indoor-outdoor pool situated in a big green house. And all is going swell until Melissa and Dolores break away from the group to dip their toes in – God forbid they ever get their hair wet! – where Melissa confides she has no idea what to think about this Nu-Teresa. Is it an act? How thin is the ice?
Jacqueline, however, believes they’re talking bout her issues with Teresa. Jacqueline has become the new Teresa: paranoid, self-obsessed, and always believing everyone is scheming against her. Or who knows – maybe while she’s stuck at home, broke and drinking her way through Chris‘ wine cellar, she’s been watching a lot of Murder She Wrote and Matlock reruns on basic cable, and that’s making her twitchy? Doesn’t Siggy carry Xanax?
When Melissa and Dolores return to the group, Jacqueline confronts them for talking about her. She doesn’t believe them when they deny it. Camp Crazy Counselor Siggy decides it’s time to whisk everyone into spa treatments. Teresa and Jacqueline get facials together, where they finally bond and start to heal.
Jacqueline admits she needs to socialize Nick more with his peers, instead of hiding him away like the Man In The Iron Mask, only allowing him out for Bravo cameras. Teresa offers that anytime Jacqueline needs a friend, call her – she’ll bring the girls. They can go places together; she’ll drive! She’s basically offering to be Jacqueline’s personal Uber – bring on the drinks! Suddenly, Jacqueline apologizes for being so harsh at her house and admits, “When I get angry I say things I don’t mean and then I feel bad.” Teresa accepts, no pushback. More than their faces have been renewed. But still, they must never discuss the pile of dead skin cells sitting in a soggy pile of towels at their feet. Oh no – those have been shed.
As the ladies cook dinner together, the laughter continues, and Siggy even explains, using simplified demonstrations even two toddlers can understand, the mechanics of how Jacqueline and Teresa work (or don’t work rather). Jacqueline is deep and Teresa prefers to bury everything inside while marveling at the tip of the iceberg. Confronting Teresa is not productive; just as avoiding Jacqueline’s copious emotional need for reassuring-over-sharing gossip does not a friendship make. I appreciated that both Teresa and Jacqueline genuinely laughed at Siggy poking fun at them – maybe this is a NEW Teresa. One who seems more relaxed and open genuinely. Not fake horse-resort relaxed and rejuvenated, but the real thing.
Teresa and Jac high-five to friendship. And proving that Teresa is sincere, she personally invites Chris and Jacqueline to her book party. A hush falls over the group at such an honor being bestowed by the queen. Over dessert, the silly continues when Teresa – now on a health kick – jokingly knocks a plate of chocolate out of Melissa’s hand sending it flying everywhere. Karma comes quick when Teresa ends up sitting in some chocolate, leaving poop colored blobs all over her butt.
They’re all laughing and joking until Jacqueline, again, imagines Dolores and Melissa are talking about her. She leans over the sofa and bellows “SHUT UP!” like a domineering tyrant. Jacqueline insists she “read their lips” at the pool and saw them discussing her, and now again she knows they are again. Jacqueline needs some anti-anxiety meds.
While Melissa and Dolroes back slowly away from the escaped crazy exhibit, Siggy, whisks in, snapping on her latex gloves, and talking cheerfully while readying the sedative shot, which she quickly jabs into Jacqueline’s fake booty, and then resumes normal activity while gently steering Jacqueline towards the crafts table to draw a picture reflecting her happiness. Siggy also asks Jacqueline why she cares so much about what others think, and if she’s been hallucinating long. Jacqueline has no answers except ‘I need help.’
The next day, the healing continues with breakfast, followed by a Teresa-led yoga class. And no, you are not the only person who can’t believe there has come a day when Teresa Giudice, of table flipping hot sausages, has found the zen and is now leading others to it. Although caution: you can lead a Jacqueline to zen, but you can’t make her think.
Back in Jersey, Juicy connects with old friends by having dinner with Rino – husband of Teresssssssa Of The Terrible Dunken Dipshit Twins. Juicy is afraid to leave his wife and daughters for prison because of security. His solution is to get lots of large dogs, which Teresa is afraid of. After all, Teresa, being a woman, can’t protect them like his drunken clod of meatball manhood can. But can Juicy protect them from the terror within? (I’m not sure if this is Teresa’s decor or Milania…).
TELL US – DO YOU THE PEACE BETWEEN JACQUELINE AND TERESA WILL LAST? HAS TERESA FINALLY CHANGED FOR THE BETTER?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]