YES!!! The ladies of The Real Housewives Of New York are back and ready to play hardball! Last night’s season premiere set the stage for story lines that will tie the season together – or, more likely, cause everyone to unravel.
Ramona Singer simply can’t allow Luann de Lesseps to marry fiance Tom D’Agostino without creeping her out with strange champagne toasts (and playing Nancy Drew behind her back), while Dorinda Medley can’t let go of the petty nonsense that came to a head with Sonja Morgan at last season’s reunion. Meanwhile, Bethenny Frankel is busy starting a new chapter of her life, which includes unloading the apartment she once shared with ex-husband Jason Hoppy. And Carole Radziwill, obsessing about the 2016 Presidential election to a degree that even exhausts Bethenny, shows us what it looks like to “shack up” with a boyfriend. Hint: It apparently includes adopting pets, reupholstering your couch, and forcing your boyfriend to get a makeover.
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We open with a montage of housewives in their natural habitats. As Ramona greets her contractor at the door donning a face mask and negligee, over at Carole’s, she and Adam pet kittens. Luann texts Tom in the park, while Sonja throws some plastic bananas in the dishwasher. Because there might not be any Grey in her Gardens, but her fake fruit is kinda dusty.
Bethenny meets real estate agent Fredrik Eklund at Skinnygirl headquarters to discuss selling her Tribeca apartment – you know, the one she’s been battling to get back from Jason for four years? Yeah, that one.
Dorinda meets Luann for a walk in the park – and to discuss why Luann isn’t inviting anyone to the wedding from their RHONY circle except for Dorinda. She wants “only positive energy” around her at the wedding, so inviting former sexual partners and frenemies who delivered the goods on Tom cheating do not fit the bill. Tom also does not want to shart his pants at the altar, so these ladies are basically banned from being in his presence henceforth. Allegedly.
Dorinda airs her list of grievances with Sonja: She has been trashing her character, specifically that Dorinda is a terrible person for setting Luann up with Tom. Sonja’s irritation is all about not being included in the Berkshires trip FROM HELL though, and everyone knows it. In any case, Dorinda advises that Sonja quit with the trash talking so she can focus on her off-Broadway show.
Speaking of off-Broadway shows…we cut to Sonja rehearsing for what amounts to an erstwhile standup routine about j-rking off with a bum shoulder. Oh – there’s also a faux-British accent (WTF!?) involved. Sonja can’t memorize her 3-5 lines, so she decides that, much like in life, “winging it” is the motto of the day. The second hand embarrassment that comes from watching even 30 seconds of this routine is off the charts, and belies part of the reason why no one is supportive of this cringe worthy endeavor. Dorinda and Luann titter in the park about how pathetic the entire situation is. Poor Sonja. Always the court jester, never the queen.
Now that Ramona has redone her apartment
and her face she needs to find a dude. So she enlists an innocent contractor, ironically named Mario, to round up some candidates. As Mario looks for the EJECT button that will remove him from this dire situation, Ramona chirps mindlessly about the list of attributes she needs in a man: over 50, rich, with grown kids, and has time to “play” with her. <dry heave> Mario quietly agrees to help a sista out, if only to make the pain of this moment STAHP. This passes for progress in Ramona’s world.
Cut to Bethenny walking down memory lane, which includes the apartment of nightmares that became one of the main contentions in her divorce settlement. Bethenny says the place was “trashed” when her ex left, but video footage doesn’t necessarily corroborate these claims. Now staged, the apartment is ready for buyers, who later snap it up the same day it’s listed with an all cash offer for a cool $6.9 million – a sum Bethenny convinced Fredrik to list it for. You have to hand it to her: She did know it all (in this case).
Dorinda pays a visit to Carole, who she called a “mean girl” on the reunion couches last season. After Carole introduces Dorinda to the KI-ens, she confesses that Adam
is now on the dole has moved in. She underplays her commitment to Adam, but Dorinda suspects it’s more than shacking up that they’re doing. Dorinda is more concerned with mending their friendship though, so she apologizes for saying that Carole’s was mean (Carole claims this group makes her mean, by the way, and if by this group she means Bethenny from last season then…okay). In the end, the ladies agree to put the past to bed. Laughing about strippers at Luann’s bachelorette party seals the deal.
Over at the Gardens that are definitely not Grey, Bethenny helps Sonja rifle through her closet in the name of donating items to Dressed For Success. Sonja, much like the hapless folk featured on Hoarders, hates letting go of her treasure trove of memories – which includes a garment with the tag still attached that she claims to have worn on a date with Prince Albert (!?!?!). She’s willing to toss in some old flats though, so, progress. Bethenny gets an earful from Sonja about how absorbed Luann is with her wedding, and how she doesn’t really speak to anyone these days. Her daughter is also away at boarding school, so Sonja must find solace in her nameless interns, her salad days with P Diddy and John-John, and her placenta facials.
Sonja talks a big game, but seems genuinely hurt that she’s not invited to the wedding. Bethenny jokes that Sonja should thank Luann for “taking out the trash” – i.e., taking Tom off the market. She will also not be attending the wedding, as Luann was not on board with having her big day sponsored by Skinnygirl.
No matter, for Luann is living it up in her SPECTACULAR penthouse that she now shares with Tom. If this is what he brings to the table, then I’m kind of getting why she was so quick to forgive his shady a$$ last year. Damn. Oh – and they’re also “soul mates,” lest we forget. As Luann discusses particulars of the wedding with her planner, she remembers her first wedding – which happened in a court house whilst she donned (gasp!) dungarees. She’s getting her fairy tale wedding this time, no matter how many housewives she has to file restraining orders against.
Side note: It’s interesting that this is the first season of any franchise city ever in which all of the women are single. Luann, once married, will be the only actual “housewife” on the roster, a status which may be sending everyone into a existential tizzy. Food for thought.
Back at Bethenny’s, she wrangles her two new puppies, then celebrates the news of a full-ask offer on her apartment. Fredrik takes all of the credit for the sale, which Bethenny doesn’t even argue with. She just wants that suitcase of money delivered, STAT.
At Ramona’s, Dorinda stops by for a lunch date. One hitch: Ramona is not there, as she is already out on another lunch date – that’s actually a date-date. Since Ramona is Tru-Renewing herself within an inch of her life these days, she throws caution to the wind and eats a second lunch, much like a Hobbit, with Dorinda anyway. She’s seeing Luann the next day, who she has major problems with at the moment. She delusionally sees herself a peacemaker, so why wasn’t she invited to the bridal shower? Hmm…maybe it’s because Ramona has been digging up dirt on Luann and Tom ever since filming wrapped last season.
As evidence, Ramona claims Luann was flirting with a younger man recently at a bar, and that she “knows something” about Tom as well. This is the issue that lies at the heart of the matter: People think Luann is a blowhard and sometimes hypocritical (check and check). What they don’t seem to realize is that Luann is the one marrying Tom, not them. Ramona needs turtle time her way out of their relationship and focus on the *winning* dates that will surely arise from her new contractor-matchmaker. Dorinda basically advises her to do just that, but it falls on deaf ears.
Carole pays a visit to Bethenny to cast a quick glance at her new puppies – Biggie and Smallz – then melt down endlessly over the election. She is down the rabbit hole, not coming up for air anytime soon. Even Bethenny, who can win championship trophies for a good rant, is exhausted with Carole’s tirades. As she pretend-searches-slash-hides in a cabinet, Bethenny tries to shut Carole down. She knows she’s upset, she knows her political leanings, she knows she was a reporter. ENOUGH. Nearly channeling Ramona in her one-track mindedness, Carole will not bend to reason. She literally cannot talk about anything else.
In our final scene, Luann meets Ramona for a drink – and a beat down. Ramona busts out the FULL ON crazy eyes for their chat, which involves Ramona’s fear that Luann is marrying a cheating, lying, dirty bastard. Luann repeats that it doesn’t matter – she is going all Tammy Wynette on all of these b*tches and standing by her man, come what may! Luann makes no apologies for not inviting Ramona to her bridal party, as she knows Ramona is on the warpath against them. Ramona claims that people come to her with info; she doesn’t go sniffing around. Mmmkay.
Because there is no resolution in sight, Ramona decides to offer the shadiest toast to Luann’s future she can summon. Raising her glass, Ramona snarks, “I hope you don’t fall on your face with him. Here’s to a fabulous marriage!” Luann can’t help but laugh at the ridiculousness that is Ramona Singer, admitting that somewhere, deep down, there’s a heart of gold. It just marches to the beat of an drunk drummer.
TELL US: WILL RAMONA BE ABLE TO DROP THE TOM INVESTIGATING? CAN DORINDA AND SONJA MOVE ON? IS LUANN MAKING A MISTAKE?
Photo Credit: Bravo