Real Housewives Of Orange County Recap: Erin Go Braless

Just when you thought the Real Housewives Of Orange County couldn’t behave any worse in Ireland, Vicki Gunvalson flashes her boobs at the dinner table and Shannon Beador turns into a after-school special about middle-age bullying.

What a strange episode! So Kelly Dodd is a rampant liability who needs to be exposed, so suddenly the ladies are all BFF with Vicki again. Yes, even Shannon. Tequila Shots became the Trojan Horse of RHOC last night, and it was well, awful.

These women know Vicki’s love tank, all cylinders of it, are running on “E” and her yearning to be their friend is so palpable you could drink it in a shot glass. Yet, who is Kelly’s only conceivable ally on RHOC? Vicki – the other ostracized one. And how do you get Kelly defenseless when she’s indefensible? Capture Vicki, leaving her bogged down in the conflict between what is right and what is right for her right now.


Meghan tries to find ancestors in Ireland

I have to tell you that the only person who looked good last night was Meghan Edmonds. Either she learned from her mistakes last season, or she’s actually deep down a decent person, or pregnancy has made her realize what’s important in life. Whatever – but keep up the good work Meghanny Drew, then investigate last night’s shenanigans.

I don’t like to watch the women behaving like this. I understand being forced to consort with Kelly is probably terrible. Believe me. And I understand the nexus of the problem lies in production and casting, and the genesis of how the network wants these shows to go, but no one enjoys seeing tittering middle-aged mothers on the cusp of well, if not menopause, then at least sufficiently beyond high school, maneuver someone into being their own worst enemy.

That Vicki would so quickly turn her back on Kelly, shows what a crap friend she is, but it’s a little suspicious, no? I don’t think Vicki in general is a bad friend, I just she’s an ‘in it to win it’ type person who will go the route of least resistance. Vicki and Kelly are Made-For-TV friends and Kelly is indefensible 98% of the time. The other women knew if they could just get Vicki thinking she’s ‘one of them’ while getting Kelly drunk enough to act absolutely irascible, they could exploit Vicki’s Achilles heel: being accepted. Leaving Vicki faced with either defending the woman she was circumstantially forced to befriend, or the women she actually hopes are are friends.

Vicki is certainly right about one thing: these diabolical machinations reek of one person – Tamra Judge.

There are few things commendable about Kelly, but when I’m forced to feel a smidgen of sympathy for her because Tamra (who thinks wearing a ‘Jesus Is My Homeboy’ T-shirt makes her a Christian) and Shannon (who is so desperate for love she’ll partake in a Naked Wasted plot), so obviously set her up, that makes me stabby.

Shit in Ireland

Here we are in Ireland, where everything is literally going to shit, and Meghan is literally standing on a corner in front of what looked like a Walmart soliciting people for their ancestral roots. So dumb, but our other option was Tamra, Shannon, Vicki, and Heather Dubrow at the farm which produces Baileys Irish Cream, stepping in shit and screaming as if that isn’t a euphemism for their entire lives. “Who wants to touch poop?” complains Shannon. Hmmmm… you, madame colonic. And probably David.

After Vicki molested the farmer, he made them put on Marshmallow Man costumes and milk cows, warning that the cows may pee or poop on them. Bullseye, indeed! One thing about Heather is that she’s always game for a challenge. Bottoms Up, moo-moos! (The moo-moos meaning the actual cows dare you think I am fat shaming a Housewife).

Milking Cows in Ireland

Without Kelly, everyone is getting along, even Shannon and Vicki. They had a boozy night out and Shannon tried to french kiss Vicki. Was she trying to pry deep dark secrets from Vicki’s lips? Cause I really don’t know how you go from ‘barely being able to be in the same room’ and ‘not being her friend’ to ‘get her naked wasted’?

Speaking of naked, over dinner in the barn, Vicki complains that her nipples go in different directions. Heather FaceTimes Terry – naturally – so Vicki – naturally – flashes him to get a consultation. Um… that’s Botched in the mind, not body, and I don’t think it’s fixable by Dr. Dubrow.

Somewhere in the middle, Meghan and Kelly arrive, which is awkward as hell given that Tamra refuses to look at Kelly, who sulks over being left out. Meghan had instructed Kelly to apologize to Tamra, so she insincerely begs Tamra’s forgiveness and blames her outburst on being angry. Did Tamra apologize for shoving Kelly? Pfft.

After that phony apology on the ‘Been There Done That Kelly Dodd’ hayride (coming soon to the Carnival of Bravo Delights), Kelly hops up to sample some Baileys, then wanders over to thank Tamra for forgiving her. Shannon hovers as Tamra’s protector. Look, I’m sorry – I just DO NOT believe Tamra was that upset over the drunken comment (albeit completely out of line) of a woman she despises. Tamra’s justification is that she’s defended Kelly time and time again, only to be stabbed in the back. Yeah, that is true-ish, I guess, but Tamra is no innocent.

The next day, Tamra is still whining about how she wants to kill Kelly and can’t be around her, so she invites herself to tour Powerscourt Estate with Meghan.

Bike Riding in Ireland

Meanwhile, Heather, bearing a flask of Fireball shots, has organized a bike ride. They are all dressed to the nines and behaving like there’s a pot of gold at the end of this trek. The gold being a drunken Kelly performing her rampage like a trained monkey. Their bait is booze and oh boy does she take it.

Disproving every theory about bike riding and the human brain, Vicki has forgotten how to ride a bike. Vicki forgets many things, though, like if she ever actually went to the hospital and saw Brooks getting cancer treatment, or like everything Tamra has ever done and said.

Afterwards, they have a picnic where Kelly turns down champagne and shots, but Heather keeps subtly offering anyway. And then comes dinner…

In the world of Housewives, tequila is an “upper” and boobs do not belong on a croquet court. Undoubtedly the most hilarious scene was Kelly playing croquet with her boobs practically flopping out of her tube top, while Heather observed with a pinched expression on her face.


So let’s break down the oddities of their last Irish Supper. First, everyone but Kelly was wearing black. Tamra jokes that they are going to her funeral. Vicki arrives first – early for the first time ever – and has a chat with Kelly about how the trip is going. Kelky complains, again, about being ganged up and points out that Vicki hasn’t defended her.

Meghan skips dinner because she isn’t feeling like setting someone up well.

Heather and Shannon go to Tamra’s room, already smirking, to shit-talk Kelly before the festivities begin. They toast with tequila. 

At dinner, Shannon pressures Kelly about drinking, sorority-girl style, then orders shots despite Kelly repeatedly protesting that she’s not drinking. Shannon even sidles over to the bartender to request that he make the shots double.

Shannon ordering Kelly drinks in Ireland

Kelly is the worst, but Shannon may be the worst-worst. I get it, she had a bad couple years, but does she not remember her first season when Heather and Tamra were doing the same crap to her, then accusing her of having a “psychotic break”? Does she have Stockholm Syndrome or something? She ordered Kelly drink after drink, all with a smirk on her face, even after Kelly told her not to. Kelly didn’t have to drink them, obviously, and is responsible for that, but Shannon and Tamra‘s agenda was as clear as a tequila shot! And if Kelly does have a drinking problem, and is trying to abstain, that’s even worse!

I mean, Shannon‘s smirk? And Tamra clearly averting her eyes, then looking around wide-eyed like ‘What’s going on?!’ – she might as well have worn a sign that says ‘I’m Innocent – but you can nail me to the cross like Jesus!’

Tamra Last Supper In Ireland

It was like watching Heathers for grownups. Like if Winona Ryder had never met Christian Slater and blown up the school, this is Heather Red (Tamra), Heather Green (Heather), and Heather Yellow (Shannon), 30 years later. Unfortunately there’s no Veronica.

While Shannon is pressuring her about tequila, Kelly mumbles to herself – or maybe a producer – “This is gonna be an ambush.” Sober Kelly ain’t wrong. So why did she drink? Perhaps she didn’t? Until later?

The biggest question is, did Vicki know? And what did she know? But that’s apparently the age old question asked in Vickidom.

After dinner failed to garner a reaction, Vicki, exploiting their friendship, doused Kelly with drinks, trussed her up, then walked her around door-to-door, Trick or Treat-style, asking first Tamra, then Shannon if they wanted to hit the pub. Vicki claims she felt if they hung out one-on-one, Kelly and Tamra would find peace. Ummm.

Final Irish Pub-crawl

Strangely, Tamra, Shannon, and Heather decide to have a ‘whale of a time’ without Vicki and Kelly, but later they invited Vicki, but told her NOT to bring Kelly. Poor victimized Tamra still can’t be around Kelly!

While everyone was supposedly drunk, Vicki suspiciously told Tamra alllllll the bad things Kelly has said about her, like calling her *GASP* a “mean girl.” The truth hurts!

Tamra reacted by texting Kelly about Vicki’s betrayal, accompanied by a selfie of Tamra and Vicki in the pub together to rub it in Kelly’s face that she had been excluded. It worked.

Drama in the hallway 2:30 AM Ireland

Meghan was asleep. She was awoken to Kelly, Tamra, Vicki, Shannon, and Heather screaming in the hallway at 2am. Kelly freaking out that she never said anything about Tamra, Tamra playing that she doesn’t want to have this conversation (she doesn’t?) while Heather films the entire thing on her iPhone per Shannon’s instruction. Vicki scampers away – she understands Kelly feels ganged up on, but Vicki is just getting back into the good graces of her oppressors and doesn’t want to become the victim again. Nice philosophy.

In the middle of their screaming fight, they have to go to the airport! Into the shuttle they go, screaming all the way. Like banshees in the night. I guess Bravo decided to make their own version of The Blair Witch Project? (“Witch” being the operative word!)

Kelly in the shuttle in Ireland

Kelly complains to Meghan about being attacked so Shannon starts yelling to deny it and saying nasty stuff. They were calling each other a drunk back and forth, piled on by Tamra calling Kelly “insane,” and Heather whispering that she “feels bad” for Kelly’s daughter, and accusing her of having a “psychotic break” and calling her “trash.” A light switch flips, Vicki remembers a time when Tamra conspired to get Gretchen “naked wasted” and Heather riled Shannon up with cruel comments and then said she was having a “psychotic break.”

But just when Kelly has won the battle, she loses the war by doing or saying something so awful, it’s impossible to overlook. Instead of ignoring Shannon, or making a pointed Camille Grammer-style comment like, “You know what you did,” Kelly screams at Shannon to shave her chin. Which ugh. She also called Tamra a “sidewinder” which, yeah.


Kelly is the saddest kind of stupid – the too stupid to recognize her own spiral downward, and this is where all the women trap her.

Now, Heather, Shannon, and Tamra can glom onto the chinny, chin, chin comment, to twist the entire fate of the situation and make it, again, about Kelly and her savage mouth, instead of their own hellacious behavior. Now the focus is how KELLY is the mean girl. They did set her up. Shannon did it first at the 70s Party, but no one wanted to believe her then, now the evidence seems a little too convincing that the same situation has occurred again.

In a dark van, going God knows where, Kelly continues ranting and yelling, refusing to let go of the hook. Vicki was eating her fingers to fill her love tank and keep her mouth shut. This week. Next week, Tamra turns everything around to be Vicki’s fault, which was probably her intent all along.

Was Vicki manipulated too?

I would say Vicki must feel like a fool getting manipulated so hard; so easily, but this is Vicki and that’s her default setting. Also, the next time I hear Tamra talk about Jesus, I’m filling a complaint in heaven. She’s the same old crappy Tamra, she just put a cross over her crop top. You can take Tamra to church, but you can’t put the church into Tamra. Actually, Tamra goes to “online church” with a “pasture” and a personal trainer, so I don’t what kinda God she got!


[Photo Credits: Bravo]