reality TV listings - Real Housewives of Orange County

Tonight Real Housewives Of Orange County returns for it’s 12th season! Yes, that means we’ve thus-far survived 11 seasons of Vicki Gunvalson and her ever-shifting truth.

So, before we get into the all-new drama, let’s take a trip down memory lane to relive all the craziness from season 11. Maybe a tequila will help refresh things?! And season 11 was full of crashes and burns (literally), boozes and burns (literally), and plenty of rides from hell.

The season opened with Vicki all by herself, and seeking absolution after lying – in some capacity – about what she knew about Brooks Ayers‘ phony cancer scheme. Obviously no one wants to forgive Vicki because it doesn’t seem possible that she totally didn’t realize he was faking a terminal illness for money and attention. 

We also met  Kelly Dodd. Oh my is Kelly a doozy! Kelly and Vicki got on like a Chambourg on fire, which is ironic considering Kelly was supposedly a close friend of Meghan Edmonds, who wants to burn Vicki at the stake!

Heather Dubrow and Vicki Gunvalson

Heather Dubrow is willing to take Vicki with a grain of margarita salt, and invites her to attend a yacht party where they had a tense sit-down during which Heather clutched a life preserver and Vicki insisted it’s not her fault Brooks lied.Tamra reacts to Vicki

Next Vicki  set her sights on conquering Tamra Judge. With Jesus’ love, Tamra is ready to tackle the fitness world in a bikini competition, and she has no room for the excess body fat required to carry around a vendetta for Vicki. Tamra promises to give Vicki just one more tiny chance to disappoint her, and the BFFdom of TamIcki was back. Kinda.

Shannon Beador, however, has no interest in forgiving Vicki. She was LIED to one too many times and is full of rage and anger! Shannon’s therapist hasn’t broached the topic of transference with her yet – you know the one where Shannon transfers all her anger about David onto Vicki!

Of course, because karma, Vicki is now dealing with her daughter Briana’s REAL health issues and Briana decides to move to California to be closer to her mom and free child care. Vicki and Briana are good again, so long as they never discuss the B Who Shall Not Be Recalled. And besides Vicki has a new man, Steve Lodge, who is so honest, and true – and even Tamra approves of him!


Meghan spent the season distracted by sniffing candles and sniffing out where Jimmy Dad Jeans was during her exhausting IVF journey. Thankfully every moment of that journey was meticulously catalogued for Meghan’s future divorce defense our viewing pleasure.


While Meghan stabbed herself with needles (and stabbed us metaphorically), Kelly was ripping through the ‘high class’ social scene with her bare teeth. Kelly and Shannon turned out to be a worse combination than David and Shannon. Over lunch at Meghan’s, Kelly met the girls and revealed that her husband, Michael is a total narcissistic sociopath who refused to divorce her, and even though they were separated for two years and Kelly was engaged to another guy, she and Michael are still stuck together! But at least their house is cute!

RELATED – Why Heather Quit RHOC!

Oh yes, speaking of still stuck together: Shannon and David… THE AFFAIR! It is SO IN THE PAST! We never have to hear about it again (NOT!) It’s been three years and every therapist who ever lived promised that it takes three years to recover from an affair, then it’s time to educate your daughters on wet dreams and other inappropriate topics.

Shannon & David Vow Renewal

While Shannon has no idea why she’s puffy as a marshmallow, she glowed with pride because she and David fixed their marriage. Things are so perfect David planned a surprise birthday party/vow renewal and actually invited Shannon. The theme was “Are you kidding me?!” Afterwards they whisked off for a second honeymoon in Hawaii where Shannon brought a vaporizer, 65 vials of vitamins, a sterilized sleep mask, a hygienically lemon-ized razor to vaporize bikini-area hair, and an avocado to eat off David’s manparts. I haven’t eaten guacamole since.

So cute! Not cute was Shannon’s 7o’s party. Wanting to show off her super-renewed love affair with David, Shannon threw a costume party and dressed unintentionally as the meddling Mrs. Roper, yet seemingly intentionally invited a woman who knew Kelly from her past and claimed Kelly cheated on Michael. At Tamra’s insistence Shannon also invited Vicki.


It was pretty much the worst party in the world. Shannon’s “friends” Jaci and Nina reminded Kelly, in front of Michael, that they knew her when – when she was partying with another guy, that is! Then they proceeded to reveal Kelly’s said lurid past to Shannon and Tamra.

Coincidentally Kelly and Vicki are in hot pursuit of Vicki’s missing purse, when the Scooby Door Mystery Team instead stumbled upon a salacious gossip villain disguised as a hostess with the mostess mumu. Kelly erupted into an obscenity-laded tirade against Shannon, claiming she set her up by inviting Jaci and Nina to embarrass her. Kelly, obviously possessed, even started speaking Owl-Latin and demanded to know WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO she cheated with?! Kelly also decided she perfectly understands why David cheated. O-U-C-H. Nearby, on her roller skates, Manners Police Heather is ready to issue citations and a permanent injunction against Kelly’s inclusion in social events.


Poor David – he really got put through the wringer as Vicki also got in his face to demand he stop calling her a liar. And I mean she is right – pot meet kettle in the liar, liar, bell bottoms on fire department!


Kelly, realizing she had burned all the bridges in Coto, tried to talk things out with Shannon over lunch, but it went from bad to worse when she demanded Shannon admit to trying to make her look bad at the party.

And then came sushi nightMeghan’s farewell to not being pregnant exploded with Kelly calling Tamra a “c-u-next-Tuesday” and Heather demanding Kelly have her mouth washed out with soap and spend the next five years in time out re-writing “I will not use bad words”  in perfect calligraphy.


You might think that would be the end of Kelly Dodd, but not so much because the newly wise and Jesus’d Tamra believes she understands Kelly’s erratic behavior. Remember Shannon’s first season, when her marriage was trash, and everything was secretly rotting in the bottom of the garbage can? That’s Kelly. Tamra intervenes to they give Kelly another chance so to Glamis They Go!

But, first Heather wants an apology from Kelly. Heather confessed to Tamra (who repeated it to Vicki, who then gossiped to her lone friend Kelly) that Heather doesn’t trust Kelly around her kids. But apologize Kelly won’t – now she is offended that Heather believes she’s an unfit parent, and Tamra is pissed Vicki repeated top-secret gossip. Cause obviously Tamra should be able to trust Vicki. Somehow they all agree to board an RV, filled with the sounds and smells of Kelly retching, for Glamis – for Tamra, of course!


Tamra should’ve let Jesus take the wheel, but she insisted her angel wings could keep them safe, then she flipped the whole thing upside down and dumped Kelly and Vicki right out. Heather had her seat belt properly secured and her ‘efficient nurse routine’ practiced from those days when she was an ACKtress, so she kept calm, cool, and collected under pressure as Vicki was strapped to a gurney.

Shannon and Meghan refused to attend citing the presence of Kelly and Vicki, instead they played golf in Palm Springs until that fateful phone call from the big, bad wolfess of the sand dunes huffed, and puffed, and blew all the golf balls into the lake! That wolf was Vicki. After Tamra wrecked their go-kart, Vicki landed in the hospital and she was just hoping Meghan would do a girl a solid to bring her a pair of sweats. But Meghan was all, like, well last time you said you were in a hospital it turned out they had never heard of the so-called patient so I’m taking City Of Hope’s side and staying right here in my lanai with my doting husband and his polo shirt collection. Sorry babes.


Alas, Vicki was forced to traipse back to the OC in nothing but a hospital gown. Heather was DISGUSTED by Meghan’s lack of etiquette and compassion in Vicki’s time of need. The exhausting drama of constantly instructing others on decorum gave Heather the vapors, which only champagne could cure.

Heather doesn’t know if she can ever forgive Meghan for her selfish ignorance in matters of life and death, but then Meghan came to lunch to tearfully grovel for forgiveness, and gifted Vicki some healing super juice a candle. No one could believe Meghan capitulated over so easily – or maybe she played those bitches with her high school manipulation game?! The things one learns being a #HashtagCoolStepMom!

Meghan apologizes for Glamis

Thankfully there was Shannon to scoff and refuse to take pity on Vicki’s whiplash and bedazzled neck brace. Shannon doesn’t understand how truly ILL PEOPLE have are able to take sickies. Finally at Tamra’s insistence, Shannon begrudgingly called Vicki  – days later – to see if she’s OK. Vicki didn’t answer or respond, so naturally Shannon was offended.

The person who is sick was Shannon’s mother-in-law, who agrees with Kelly that Shannon totes deserved to be cheated on because she’s horrible to David! Awkward Thanksgivings here the Beadors come!

Shannon’s daughters have a band and a dream of being the next Hanson, so Shannon and David plan a gig – IN A BAR – and invite all their middle-aged friends to get drunk. While the band played, Shannon’s mother-in-law sidled over to Kelly – cause like minds – and confessed to how much she can’t stand Shannon. Naturally Kelly was sympathetic, and retold the entire thing to Shannon, who had a raging meltdown befitting of Kelly herself, and spent the entire ride home ranting about it in front of her daughters. I definitely think those girls have a future in punk rock with material like that!

Shannon's Mother-in-law-drama

I think Shannon decided David isn’t allowed to communicate with his family. Or have a phone. Or internet. And he must ask Shannon’s permission before putting on his under-roos in the morning, because she must verify that they’re organic, pure, and blessed by Dr. Moon.

Also the Beadors moved to erase all taints of David’s misdeeds, and relocated to a classic built- re: toxic materials – rental by the sea-shore with no crystals in the walls or nannycams in the Feng Shui lemon bowl.

Since Vicki decided to turn evil into good, she had the bright idea to endorse the charity, Kill All Cancer. Which I do believe also turned out to be a scam, but I digress… Vicki should just stick to promoting the other C-word. The one Kelly knows and loves.


Since no near-death accident goes unpunished, Tamra organized a Glamis Survivors Summit at a spa where in the mud bath Vicki comes clean with a dastardly secret about Shannon’s marriage. David did more than cheat… he used to be physically and verbally abusive! Obviously after overhearing Vicki spill Shannon’s deep-dark secrets, Kelly decides it’s a good idea to confide in Vicki about how awful her own marriage is. Kelly’s sobbing is so loud that Tamra and Heather overhear it in another cabana. Tamra completely understands how Kelly feels and has PTSD flashbacks from her marriage to Simon.

Meanwhile Meghan gets her IVF results back and it’s twins! Or it’s not… There are four successful spermies and the doctor implants two, but only one – a girl – successful takes hold. Meghan weeps in mourning for the baby she never carried but hoped she would, and Jim remains stoically by her side, secretly checking baseball stats.

Meghan Edmonds gets IVF

With Meghan now knocked up she she must expand her wick in life by opening a candle store and discovering her Irish ancestry. Meghan foolishly invites everyone to the opening of her candle emporium, and Vicki and Shannon come face-to-face for the first time since that time they were both wearing bad wigs. Now there is no mask to conceal their seething contempt!

Tamra decides candles have the power to heal and tries to broker peace, but instead Vicki declares that the real liar is not her, but Shannon. And Shannon knows what she means… Then Vicki storms out. Tamra, paragon of virtue, decides to get to the bottom of it by shopping with Vicki, but Vicki just gets her heel stuck in the floor of the store and her boob falls out of her shirt. TamRicki are back, but Shannon has some splainin’ to do.

Kelly complains about Michael

Heather throws a book launch party where Kelly and Michael’s unraveling relationship is on full display. After Vicki’s accusation at the candle store, Shannon’s sucking up to her frenemy is also on full display. Everyone getting along prompts Meghan to invite them to Ireland. What could go wrong in the land of green-eyed monsters, rocky shores, and copious amounts of alcohol?!


Ireland was so fun for the first 15 minutes, but the first pub tour in Kelly and Tamra were literally Erin Go Brawl’in over minced words. It’s because Vicki forced them to Whoop It Up! A drunken Kelly started making lots of accusations and Tamra decided to throw them right back. Since things were already bad, the women decided to hit a luxury department store where Kelly hissed about the reason Tamra’s daughter doesn’t speak to her, prompting Tamra to hit (or push) Kelly, and they all got thrown out of the store. After experiencing the effect of cheap beer, Heather melts into a puddle of mortified goo like the wicked witch from the Wizard of Oz.

RELATED – Tamra Reunites With Daughter Sidney!

As Tamra sobs on Shannon’s shoulder, they all decide she’s move evil than even Vicki. And for five gracious minutes where she got to flash her boobs at dinner, Vicki was friends with everyone again! All the while, sober and knocked up Meghan was propositioning people for their DNA on a street corner.

Drama in the hallway 2:30 AM Ireland

The next day Kelly decided not to drink, even though Heather prodded her with fireball shots, and Shannon ordered her a double over dinner. Sober Kelly has some smarts, apparently, and calls the ladies out for trying to get her drunk so she’ll do something awful again.


Something awful certainly happened. As the ladies get into the limo for the airport, things exploded between Kelly and Tamra, and Shannon – and hell hath no fury like a Kelly scorned! With Heather goading her on and whispering to Meghan that Kelly is a very sick, bad individual, who defines “trash,” Kelly snaps. She reveals that Vicki told her many interesting factoids – like Eddie is gay, or that David is abusive.


Back in the US, Vicki tries again in vain – actual vanity considering Tamra spent months perfecting her ass – to make amends with Tamra by attending her fitness competition, but Tamra refuses to acknowledge her. In a surprise twist Tamra did reach out to Kelly to explain that she’d been educated about the THE REAL VICKI. Kelly wasn’t so sure, though… she’s seen THE REAL TAMRA too.

At the finale party – a donut delight, to celebrate Tamra’s return to normal eating, Vicki is treated like poop on the lawn left by Shannon’s dogs. Vicki even brought cards – cause affirmations work! They mean something! – and a housewarming gift for Shannon. Tamra brought something too – custom-made mugshot t-shirts branded with shady offenses for each woman, and Vicki’s said lying.


Realizing her egregious behavior in the Irish limo was not OK, Kelly tried to apologize to Shannon but “interloper” Heather again got involved, and it ended up making things worse. Even Briana attempting to smooth things over with Tamra and Vicki again.


At the reunion everyone still hates Vicki and Kelly. Tamra is filled with renewed furor and accusations that Kelly cheated.


Shannon will NEVER, EVER forgive Vicki’s lies about David, and Vicki continues to insist she did nothing wrong. And Heather bailed out.

So season 12 – we welcome you! RHOC premiers tonight on Bravo at 9/8 c! Join us here in the comments to snark our way through the episode together!


[Main Photo Credit: Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/ Chris Haston/Bravo; All Photo Credits: Bravo]