Last night’s Real Housewives Of New York had it all: turtle time, flying trapezes, sexually harassing birds, meltdowns at premiere galas, breakups, brawls in the spa, makeups at the spa, ghosts of Sonja Morgan‘s past, and wrap dresses. You know, just an ordinary episode! (Seriously how is this one of the lower rated Housewives franchises?!)
Sonja is just strolling down the street with her coffee and her trendy patterned tights when a limousine window rolls down and a voice calls out from the dark, “Hey hooker…” Sonja doesn’t even flinch, she just keeps doing her Mary Tyler Moore strut with a distracted smile until the voice gets more persistent. But it’s just Bethenny Frankel! Sonja laughs because she assumed it was one if the regular people who call her a hooker during her morning coffee run! Where is Sonja getting her coffee from?
Anyway, they drive into the blue skies of Hell’s Kitchen to legendary artist Hunt Slonem‘s studio. Bethenny brought her security guard because she’s probably worried Sonja was actually going to take her to an abandoned warehouse then force her to participate in a bizarre sex ritual probably involving the board of the Morgan trustees, but no Hunt is legit there… and so are several photos of Sonja on his table of honors.
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Bethenny is shocked to see some veracity to the “smokey eye, updo, G’staad” tales Sonja has been bragging about for decades while simultaneously rolling around on a bar floor, needing a “snatch guard.” (that snatch guard is still in the basement of the townhouse, surrounded by the pallet of Wesson Oil repurposed as lube for clogged pipes and other essentials, and a box of penis straws leftover from Luann de Lesseps‘ bachelorette party. One of Hunt’s works is probably also stashed down there, next to an abandoned birdcage).
As Hunt and Sonja chatted about famous mutual friends, Bethenny wandered around his enormous space. Turns out the only bizarre sex situations are the giant paintings of rabbits (who breed like… rabbits) and the apiary full of birds who wolf-whistled and cat-called Bethenny as she strolled by. I think they were actually directing their mating calls to Bethenny’s sequined jacket. It was the same color as the toucan!
The most bizarre thing was Bethenny also spotting a photo of Tinsley Mortimer on Hunt’s table. It was from the early ’00’s – back when Tinsley was an “it girl” and Bethenny was hawking cookies at Williams Sonoma. It’s the circle of a New York life!
Meanwhile Tinsley and Dorinda Medley are at the Big Apple Circus rehearsing for Tinsley’s turn as celebrity ringmaster! This was my favorite scene in a Real Housewives episode ever! This is more than just an opportunity for Tinsley to reclaim her socialite title, it’s a way to reconnect with her past. Every year of her childhood Tinsley’s family visited NYC and her dad took them to the circus.
Tinsley learns she’s going to have to announce a portion of the show from the trapeze platform which cues about 16 meltdowns. Tinsley probably had to call Dale Mercer for a pep talk about WASP behavior, and all the while Dorinda climbs up there and impressively dismounts from the platform, swinging on the trapeze with her legs in perfect alignment, like she was born for the circus. It was the single greatest moment in Housewives history. Dorinda jokes that hopefully the circus will realize she’s a better ringmaster and replace Tinsley.
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You’d think Tinsley would be more comfortable at the circus considering her friend group… You’d also think she would steal a tranquilizer gun from the elephant trainer because after seeing the mid-season trailer they’re gonna need one!
After her panic subsides, Tinsley conquers her fears and climbs the platform. This is what I love about Tinsley, even while she’s freaking out, practically peeing her pants from 30 feet up she still remembers her manners. She pauses her hysteria to properly introduce herself to the other trapeze artists. You can take the girl out of the South, but you can’t take the South out of the girl.
From circuses to Countesses, Tinsley attends an Al-Anon meeting with Luann. Afterward, they go for coffee and as Tinsley is opening up to Luann about how stressful the experience was. Luann is more focused on getting sugar into her coffee, because THE CABARET STAR needs her coffee perfect, girls! CABARET COFFEE & FRIENDS coming soon to the Big Apple Circus!
Mid-convo Tinsley just lets it slip that she broke up with Scott Kluth. For realz this time. After Bethenny’s disco of the damned dinner party, Tinsey was motivated to call him and demand more from their relationship. Scott refused so Tinsley finally had the realization that this is not the sperm for her petrified eggs. Good thing Dale didn’t start on that stocking!
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That night Luann joins Sonja and Ramona Singer for Singles Night at the retirement home. Flash your AARP card for half-off a Metamucil martini! I bet that place has Tom’s picture posted as Middle-Ageds Most Wanted.
Just as Sonja spots Michael, another Tom-Type, in through walks Mario. As in MARIO SINGER. As in the one man who took on Ramona, and lost his sanity and his soul as a result. Luann is shocked, Ramona is blushing, and Sonja is overjoyed by the opportunity to revisit her creepy incest fantasy about Mario as her hot step-dad, or something. Basically, Sonja is Sonja, so she hangs all over Mario gushing. He is aging in reverse and he also comes with other blasts from the past: samples from the TrueFaith Jewelry Turtle Time collection, and a TruFaith T-Shirt from Ramona’s earliest years trying to compete with Bethenny as a “maven.”
Luann is the awkward third wheel as Mario and Ramona reconnect, while Sonja wanders over to Michael to discuss why they’ve never hooked up (other than the obvious that he’s a skeevy perv, but that has NEVER stopped Sonja before, so… ) Anyway, they’ve never hooked up, because Sonja as tells him, “You’re a guy I would marry, not have sex with.” This was totally a way for Sonja to gently inform Michael that yes, even SHE has some meager standards. And Michael’s response is to literally WALK AWAY! “I guess he just wanted to have sex with me,” Sonja shrugs.
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But the real question is did Mario want to have a TrueRenewal of relations with Ramona?!
The next day all the women meet at an absolutely amazing spa for a reconnection day organized by Dorinda. All these broads in a sophisticated environment means they’re gonna bring the sophisticated environment down to their barnyard level. Dorinda even makes a donkey reference so I can safely say my expectations were duly met!
Dorinda is going to be staying in this very same place while her new apartment is being renovated and prepared. She is so over her old dump. Dorinda doesn’t even want to bother cleaning it up to rent out. That’s a rich bitch: she’s gonna create a Grey Gardens right in midtown. And in 10 years were’ gonna find out that Sonja has secretly been squatting there, with dingy monogrammed towels taped to the window, using newspapers from 2018 as toilet paper, and still slurring about Morgan Letters being under plexiglass beside the Mona Lisa.
Anyway, Sonja who is on a This Is Proof I Was A Morgan Tour this episode shows up dressed for a fancy lunch, because she’s meeting some French friend for lunch who’s also Sonja’s daughter’s godmother. Basically not today hooker catcalls! Despite the peaceful surroundings Dorinda is annoyed by Sonja’s early departure. She’s even more annoyed when she learns Barbara Kavovit also has to leave early to be on the job site, but Dorinda is most annoyed with Ramona over what happened at the Angel Ball, which has gone all the way to Page Six with a lie from Ramona.
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What happened is this: Ramona probably had a date who canceled last minute, which left her with an extra ticket, so she called Dorinda and invited her claiming she wanted a girl’s night. Dorinda was already planning to go with John, but told them not to come so she could be Ramona’s +1. When Dorinda arrived, Ramona promptly ditched her for someone richer, fancier, and wearing less pants, then pretended it wasn’t her fault as she and Dorinda were seated at different tables. Dorinda knew this was a lie after confirming with the seating coordinator so she confronted Ramona, and somehow it landed in Page Six that Dorinda made a big scene at the event. Alongside a quote from Ramona denying that there was an incident…
Unsurprisingly Ramona lied! At the spa Dorinda gently mentions that she knows Ramona was being untruthful, and it hurt her feelings, but instead of apologizing Ramona doubles (triples, quardruples… ) down on the story that her ticket said table 61 and Dorinda’s table was 62, and since they bought individual tickets, it wasn’t an option to sit together. Unfortunately for Ramona the Real Housewives Of New York mics happened to capture her exchange with someone working at the gala in which Ramona is told she’s table 62, then is heard asking table 62 is repeatedly. Then cameras spot Ramona running into a different friend, and suddenly deciding she her ticket says table 61. “Basically Ramona got caught social climbing,” Sonja explains for the cheap seats in the back.
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Ramona and Dorinda escalate into a huge screaming match in the middle of the spa with Dorinda comparing Ramona to a donkey with hay on one side and hay on the other. Then Ramona actually shoves her! SERIOUSLY! I was frozen with shock, like couldn’t breath waiting to see how Dorinda would react… Naturally 10 minutes later Ramona and Dorinda were hugging, kissing, and saying they love each other. Dorinda explains that she can’t stay mad at Ramona but she wanted to call to let Ramona know that she knew what she did. THIS. This right here is why this show is the best one on TV. I mean if that happened on Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills we’d still be talking about it in 2026.
All this and more before Bethenny even arrived!
Sonja pulls Barbara aside to inform her that she’s been making a lot of “faux pas” with the group, for instance telling everyone at Bethenny’s party that she doesn’t like Ramona. Time is of the essence for Barbara to rectify these wrongs. Especially since Ramona now knows what Barbara said and is on the warpath. Turtle Time is here. The pinot mixed with vodka, ice, and cilantro is upon us. Someone is going to get a diamond stud to the eye. That someone will not be Ramona.
Barbara starts with the easier target: Dorinda. Barbara tells her she wants their friendship back on track, so they don’t let others come between them anymore. Dorinda starts to tear up, as she does (even though 10 minutes earlier she was foaming at the mouth), then they hug, kiss, and makeup.
There is a brief intermission when Bethenny arrives and Luann reveals that they saw Mario out and he went back to Ramona’s apartment. Bethenny is gobsmacked! She demands to know if Ramona got down with Mario – even just the tip. Ramona, sanctimonious and full of shit as ever, insists that they had a PG evening fit for the Hallmark Channel of walking Coco (who only has a year left) and Ramona rubbing cream on Mario’s face. “Not my cream,” she clarifies, “My Ramona skin cream.” Oh, Cream on Dorinda’s face; cream on Mario’s face; Egg on Ramona’s face. Everyone needs a TruFaithRenwalEggyCustardMassage
Then Bethenny learns Tinsley dumped Scott. Bethenny is feeling vindicated. This breakup was sponsored by Skinnygirl. She marvels at how happy Tinsley looks to never have to star in a Coupon Cabin commercial again! All the women coo over Tinsley, and it was all very sweet, but Dorinda doesn’t believe it. She thinks The Tinz simply pressed paused on this relationship and by next week will be wailing and caterwauling to Scott to give her another chance. I feel like Dale and Patricia Altschul from Southern Charm need to join forces and find Tinsley a decent date. Her eggs, as Dale tells us every other week, are freezing to death!
Finally, Barbara girds her loins and gathers her confidence to confront Ramona. Barbara circles Ramona like a shark, while Ramona circles Barbara like a hungry lion. Barbara wants to gain the upper hand by apologizing to Ramona for something Ramona isn’t even supposed to know she said; Ramona wants to assure her dominance. Also, she’s feisty from her fight with Dorinda.
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Ramona tries to throw Barbara off her game by mentioning, in a condescending way, that all she wears is wrap dresses. Subtext: she may want to rethink this because they’re out of style and not flattering. But Barbara is no wilting flower – she’s wearing snake print for a reason! Babs is playing her cards like a seasoned social-climbing pro and suggests that if Ramona has better ideas for what Barbara should wear, she should take her shopping. Now Dorinda would’ve told Barbara she could wear a clown suit, but Ramona is easily swayed by anyone who caters to her high opinion of herself. Barbara just keeps repeating shopping until she sees Ramona soften, then she swoops in with a thoughtful apology and they agree to start over.
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“Who would think a wrap dress would disarm this conversation?” marvels Ramona. I actually think the word “Shopping” turned the conversation… I don’t know who dodged the bigger bullet there: Ramona or Barbara?!
Final notes: Luann found a nail polish called “Cabaret Red”? It was made just for her! For Countess & Friends! And another thing Dorinda can take credit for! Who wants to bet Dorinda is going to be heckling: “CABARET RED! Got it from me! CABARET RED!” Here we go again girls, like life being a cabaret, it’s the song that never ends, it just goes on and on my frienemeies….
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TELL US – ARE TINSLEY & SCOTT DONE FOR GOOD? WILL RAMONA’S MAKEUP WITH BARBARA LAST?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]