Real Housewives of Beverly Hills season premiere recap

Last night, Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills came back bigger, sparklier, and more expensive than ever. Yes. Just the way I like it – everyone Botoxed to the hilt, in full makeup, and kicking around snarky comments with their $1,000 shoes. If you can’t play the Beverly Hills game, go retire to your divorce condo until you’re ready to barely bat your false eyelashes again (“barely” only because you can’t move your face).

So Lisa Vanderpump is neither forgiving nor forgetful. Lisa likes her people like she likes her dogs: loyal, fluffy, and willing to wear a sequined rosette that says “I belong To Lisa Vanderpump (who makes my life fabulous)!” Have you met Harrison? What about Kyle Richards?


Besides Harrison, Lisa’s other new little one is Dorit Kemsley and Lisa is trotting her around Beverly Hills on a sparkly leash. Dorit, pronounced like “Dorito,” is a mishmash of identities. All of them famewhorish. She’s married to PK, whose claim to fame seems to be managing Boy George, who is Dorit’s sister wife. George lives with them, and together, they all snuggle in bed watching Game of Thrones. Perhaps Kody Brown needs some tips? They do everything better in Beverly Hills – even Sister Wives!

LVP and PK have been friends for years. And once he upgraded from his old wife to Dorit, the Todd-Kemsleys all got on like a manor house on fire! Lisa hosts a dinner at PUMP to introduce her soldiers, Kyle and Dorit, to each other. Kyle has gotten a hair cut, but otherwise she’s still exactly the same. Just as LVP demands everyone is passive-aggressively trying to prove who is Lisa’s better friend. The winner gets one used tea bag sniffed by Giggy and a pile of mini pony poop, which, if you look hard enough, is dotted with the diamond grain Lisa mixes into their food for ultra shiny mane and tail.

Kyle meets Dorit

Reminding Lisa, subtly, of her loyalties Kyle mentions the disastrous Dubai trip.

Lisa still has nightmares about Lisa Rinna‘s betrayal. And Eileen Davidson, that harlot!, trying to rewrite history, then demanding LVP apologize for Eileen’s misdeeds and not being compassionate enough in minimizing them. Dorit tries to impress everyone with the fact that she can speak Hebrew, so Kyle interrupts to shout that she knows Pig Latin. Things are going swell here.

Well enough about them, let’s check in with Erika Girardi. Erika Jayne is patting more pusses than ever, and she’s also about to turn 45, which is the age when everything starts to go downhill. Soon the night sweats Erika is experiencing won’t come from doing splits on stage in a thong bikini, but from something else deeper inside.

To remind her of the better things in life, like how very rich they are, Tom surprises Erika with a birthday gift for himself. A Chagall painting of Adam & Even drawn in Sharpie. Sounds about right! Erika is unimpressed, but seems used to it. Then Tom whips out her real gift – another Cartier panther ring, which looks exactly like the old one to my untrained eye. Let’s get Kyle, PhD in luxury studies, on the case.

To celebrate this 45th milestone of Erika Jayne’s entry into our cultural psyche, pervading our dreams with patted pusses and pussy whips and c-nty metaphors, Erika is throwing a Studio 54 themed birthday party. Budget is no object. “It’s my f–king party, I can do what I want,” she declares. Girl – I like your style! Go for gold right down to your panties!

Erika isn’t the only person receiving gifts. Harry Hamlin surprises Lipsa with a new car. She deserves it for being the mother of two teenage daughters. Recalling my own adolescence, and realizing how in many ways Lipsa has never progressed from behaving like an adolescent herself, I can’t argue with Harry Hamlin’s logic.

But there are bigger things to consider. After losing her father, while also dealing with her daughters, Lipsa has had a total attitude shift since last season. “Be better, not bitter,” is her new motto. She will work duly to prove this in her interactions with LVP, during which she will smile, kowtow, and kill her with kindness. Or at least kill their feud. She hopes. Kyle is convinced that LVP will be more apt to forgive Lipsa over Eileen because, after all, Lipsa is easier to manipulate.

Apparently, with her new grown-up haircut, Kyle has re-branded herself Ambassador For Housewives Peace: Lisa Vanderpump Division. To further her mission, she goes to dinner with Eileen and Erika. Eileen shares that she lost her mother just before the reunion last year (!), something she kept hidden from the other women so that it wouldn’t impact the flow of the reunion. Eileen is nothing if not professional.

Since losing her mother, Eileen has been getting medical advice from Yolanda Hadid and trying some of those alternative treatments that have worked so well for curing Lyme. [eye roll]

Apparently, Yolanda is now doing 75% better. You know who else is doing 75% better? RHOBH, because Yolanda’s Lyme is no longer an invading force. Kyle lists all the things from last season she never wants to discuss again. She tactfully forgot to include “Lyme,” but that should have been No. 1. No. 2 should have been Brandi Glanville. In fact, lets just pretend that whole Brandi episode – all three seasons of it – never happened and move on completely.

Which is what Eileen is hoping to do with LVP. This new Eileen recognizes LVP’s limitations as a friend and would just like to smile, nod, and be civil. After all, 30 years ago, America was at war with Vietnam and now it’s a hot vacation spot for the rich, so if American and Vietnam can make like frenemies prospering from their past insurrection, surely two Housewives with far less Lyme blood on their hands can agree to disagree. We hope! Better yet – maybe RHOBH can go to Vietnam on the next cast trip!

Kyle chews on the ends of her hair, and considers the possibility of LVP being friendly with Eileen and Lipsa again and decides not to mention the voodoo dolls hanging in LVP’s closet behind all the pink tulle and satin blouses. Yep, it’ll be great! They’ll just slap a sparkle on the cheap polyester and dance like it’s 1977!

Dorit at home

Before attending Erika’s party, we visit Dorit’s house. Dorit and PK moved to Beverly Hills two years ago to be nearer and dearer to all the celebrities they need to be intimately surrounded by. For work that is. Dorit has, like, three live-in Housekeepers and nine nannies for her very busy career as a part-time swimwear designer. Apparently, she’s very busy. She uses flashcards to help her remember her two children’s names and ages, while she gets her face spackled into an approximation of what a human looks like, then she joins Boy George for champs over breakfast. Well, that’s nice.

PK is really making all this money managing Boy George‘s career? Boy George who just competed on Celebrity Apprentice with Kyle? Well, I’ll be damned!

Speaking of Kyle, she and Mauricio are joining the PJ club – private jet – and seek advice from Tom. Kyle needs it for her high-flying career as a Hollywood producer pedaling her own sordid tale of Drew Barrymore’s lost childhood. Seriously, though, hearing that Kyle’s mom took her to studio 54 when she was only 10 (!) puts so much in perspective. It is literally a miracle Kyle isn’t more like Kim! Maybe all that hair that she hid behind was a ruse used to shield her from the realities of how f–ked up her life was. Then it turned into a cape, which Kyle used to flee to the normal, stabilizing, loving embrace of Mauricio and his psychologist mother. And it has been WOW and AMAAAAZING ever since. ($10 says Dorit will be speaking with Mauricio’s accent by the end of this season!)

I don’t ‘get’ this Dorit. It seems like she’s trying to hide something. She’s an American with a twitchy accent, but she grew up in NY, actually CT, yet she considers herself European? And Israeli? Why do I detect a whiff of Lala Kent style model from her past…

Anyway, on the night of Erika‘s party, several people who lived through the late-70’s but apparently don’t remember them *ahem LVP* keep mentioning the 80’s. LVP actually wore a power suit covered in sequins to the party, and Ken wore a matching other half. Couples who sequin together, stay together!

Eileen and Lisa at Erika's Party

Everyone else wore boobs. Just boobs. Eileen paired hers with a bathmat turned into a coat. It was fabulous.

Erika has every detail attended to – except for the food. She seems to have forgotten about that. Perhaps it was intentional and she was embracing the late-70’s mindset of doing a little coke to suppress your appetite while cocktailing the night away. Unfortunately, many of her guests forgot to powder their noses and the shine of hunger is circling the party and making LVP garrulous, even more so than usual, which does not bode well for Lipsa and Eileen.

Eileen still worships the Erika Jayne ultra-ego, and to repay Erika for all she’s done giving Eileen a chance to entertain that other side of her, she rewards her with the ultimate birthday gift – better than expensive paintings to hang in Tom’s office, or rings she has duplicates of that Tom’s secretary pre-approved and ordered out how his discretionary Erika budget fund, better than flashy parties and pasties studded with gems: it is a walk-on part on Y&R. Any part Erika’s heart desires. Erika clutches the script, her eyes shining with the bright lights of what could be. Giving the gift of fame – only in Beverly Hills! Eileen thinks Erika should take a walk on the wild side and play a nun.

Erika gets the ultimate gift from Eileen

Erika was a gracious host other than forcing everyone on a starvation diet, and though the party was fabulous, everyone’s focus is not on Erika’s birthday, but on how LVP will react to Eileen and Lipsa. I’m with Kyle – who cares anymore, let’s just move on and blame Yolanda for dividing the group with her dumb drama.

It is Lipsa who approaches LVP first, and as Kyle predicted, LVP is more receptive. As proof, LVP immediately assaults Lipsa with some barbed comments. Strangely, that reassured Lispsa, whose relationship with LVP was always about banter. Until that woman with no face, Yolanda, appeared staring her eyelash-less eyes, her skin being the sort that moved. She Who Shall Not Be Named always floating in the periphery, latching onto their weaknesses and slithering in to remind them how easily they broke apart.

It is Eileen who LVP will not even dignify a chance. LVP crisply says hello, then ignores Eileen for the remainder of the party. They run into each other at the bar and LVP immediately turns away, mid-conversation, leaving Dorit to awkwardly smooth things over. This Dorit is no neophyte though. She recognizes opportunity when she sees it and seizes upon the moment to invite Eileen to her birthday party the following week. See, Dorit just can’t imagine how this lovely and sweet woman whom she has known for all of 10 seconds is the very same woman LVP has been deriding for months.

In the midst of all this, Tom surprises Erika with a real gift by bringing her mom to the party. Erika’s mom has been secreted away in an upstairs bedroom all day. Since their house is so huge, Erika didn’t even notice! That’s lifestyles of the rich and semi-famous for you. Erika’s mom had her at only 19, then Erika’s dad left, so she raised Erika as a single mother. Erika’s mom looks a lot like her and it was sweet. I was happy to see a more human, less plastic and lacquered side of Erika. I mean, even that girl’s hair looks like plastic, like she took a Barbie Doll to a salon to request that exact look. Probably paying $2k to create non-hair. Well, whatever.

LVP data-lazy-sizes up Lisa Rinna

As the ladies all hit the dance floor, LVP hangs back. Maybe it’s the hunger pangs weakening her? Or, for now, she is biding her time, refusing to give Lipsa and Eileen the satisfaction of honoring this conspiracy she imagines they’ve constructed to kick her out of the group. I disagree that there is a plan to get rid of Lisa. To me, Lipsa seems suitably chastened, while Eileen honestly acknowledges that it is what it is. She’s an actress, she’s worked with a lot of divas, and played them too, so she gets that she has to ‘work’ with LVP and is going to treat this professionally. She’ll be nice, she wants to get along, but that’s where it ends.

It’s up to LVP to make the right moves and turn things around with Lipsa and Eileen, to unfreeze the Botoxed friend group of RHOBH, and give them the chance to make things right. When they’ve groveled sufficiently, I’m sure she’ll let them back into her good graces, slowly offering them the chance to sip her tea. And once they’re there, like Kyle, they’ll do anything to stay there.

Until then – everyone just dance, dance, dance.


[Photo Credits: Bravo]