Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills Recap: Croque Madame

Last night the Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills traveled to France to visit glorious Provence. Of course these women couldn’t just enjoy the sites and each other’s company, and a new Lisa was thrown under the Peugeot wheels!

Here we are at the Chateau Ventoux, which according to Lisa Rinna is “like Downton France Abbey” except in France an Abbey is a nunnery, so LOL. (If I’m wrong here don’t bother correcting me because I like my joke). The rooms are all beautiful. The surroundings are lush. And unlike when PK smothers her with potato chip crumbs and calls it a blanket, Dorit Kemsley feels like a princess. A real live European princess, who any moment will be woken from this nightmare by a prince who doesn’t have financial problems and will carpet their castle in athleisure wear made by Givenchy and Beverly Reach. Life, really will have purpose for this girl from London, Connecticut. 

Erika Girardi & Lisa Rinna

How can anyone be unhappy in a place this pretty? For a few solid seconds they even have sympathy for Camille Grammer. After calling Camille and Denise Richards the night before and learning that their homes were spared, Dorit and Teddi Mellencamp Arroyave wake up at 5am to the distressing news that Camille’s house has been completely destroyed by the flames after the wind changed direction. Dorit is hysterical (which is Dorit’s most commonly used emotion). It makes Teddi want to fly home immediately to hug her children. Too bad she didn’t go with that intuition!

Back to dinner the first night, everyone is in the high spirits that come with being waited on hand and foot, until you get used to it and morph into Lady Mary (Downton). Erika Girardi is most overjoyed, because she is usually the one waiting on Tom hand and foot. Hand job and foot rub, that is! Dorit also tells a crazy story about stealing her parents car at aged 13 and how some friends ate white chocolate in the backseat but her parents thought the stains were something else entirely.  She was grounded until her 30th birthday lunch.

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The drinks are strong and they are flowing. I’m just gonna go ahead and say it: I LOVED Erika this episode. She seemed so free and fun. Erika claims that without Lisa Vanderpump they can let their guards down and be vulnerable without fear of things being used against them at a later date, when they’re least expecting the jab. Well Erika spoke too soon because Kyle Richards is all too ready to storm into Villa Rosa and steal the shade crown. More on that later!

It is Lipsa who unfortunately opened Pandora’s Box (not to be confused with PANDY’s box of SUR souls) when she brought up dressing in the Erika Jayne costume and solving her problems with Kim Richards. Lipsa still believes this was a positive thing, even if it started out with the wrong choice of words. Kyle admits she was a little weirded out by it, and then the topic seems to [thankfully] drop. Too bad EJ ‘method acting’ doesn’t come with premonitions, because this will very soon bite Lipsa in the cunty ass!

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But for the time being everyone is laughing and having fun – and most importantly getting drunk, while jet lagged! Even Kyle didn’t annoy me too much in the early hours of this trip, but by the first day I was over her again.

Dorit Kemsley learns bad news about Camille Grammer's House

The next morning Erika is hung over in the way I imagine Princess Di did a hangover. Coming to the breakfast table for tea in sunglasses, with perfect hair, and resting a warm tea cup on her forehead to soothe the headache. A few vitamin B tablets later Erika was dressed for sightseeing. Without her glam squad gear, Erika looked cute and stylish, and much less contrived.

Teddi, meanwhile, got up at 8 to exercise, then sent 3200 text messages shaming other women for not working out at 6 am on vacation after drinking pina coladas. Truly, though, I’d rather interact with an elliptical machine than Teddi.

In fact, all the women dressed in casual walking-friendly clothes to tour a French market, a bridge to nowhere (a euphemism for the relationships on this show if I’ve ever seen one), and some ancient castles. It was nice and Dorit felt like she was in Europe…

At the market, Kyle spends an exorbitant amount of time trying to buy a hat. Yes, another hat. Is Kyle buying all these hats to cover HER two faces? Finally (after Lisa and Erika have hopped on a plane to Germany and made it back), Kyle has decided on some sort of strange Nazi-style cabbie hat that was as unbecoming as all the others she wears.

Dorit Kemsley

Then the ladies retire for lunch where Erika orders the hangover special: croque-monsieur and pomme frites with a double cappucino. Dorit, Lipsa, and Teddi literally watch her eat as they munch on one fry and have salad with white wine. Perfect timing for Lipsa to share that Amelia wants to do more besides modeling. Amelia wants to channel her struggle with an eating disorder into helping others by going to school for nutrition and psychology. Ler’s hope that Amelia, unlike all these other model daughters, actually sticks to the college part.

Kyle Richards

This prompts Kyle to open up about battling her own eating disorder when she was a teenaged actress. Kyle got down to 99lbs by eating nothing by microwaved V8 juice and 6 almonds per day. Much like Amelia, it all started when Kyle was trying to break into the superficial world of Hollywood and didn’t want to be the girl with boobs and butt when her sisters were so skinny. Kyle is always competing! Unfortunately, Kyle was rewarded for losing weight with a better on-set wardrobe and tons of compliments, but then things spiraled out of control. In much the way that is always Kyle (and Kim), who wants to hide anything about her life that isn’t perfect, she has never told anyone about this – especially not her daughters for fear that they might develop eating disorders of their own.

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The women rally around Kyle’s admission, and Erika is humbled by how safe this group of friends feels, as if she can finally, finally start trusting other women. Screeeech – not so fast, EJ!

That night, over dinner, they’re all dressed up, but not too much. Nothing too preposterous. Lipsa even compliments Teddi on embracing the fashion game and stepping it up this season. Although Teddi looks just as boring as ever to me, she’s definitely using more makeup!

Teddi Mellencamp Arroyave

In a way that’s completely unnatural and smacks of premeditation, Kyle mentions Lipsa dressing up as Erika Jayne and calling Kim “cunty”. Immediately Teddi launched into a spiel about how it was insulting to Erika that Lipsa used her to insult Kim. Teddi and Kyle believe Erika should be offended. In fact, they are literally trying to start a fight between Lipsa and Erika by trying to convince Erika to get mad!

Lisa Rinna

Lipsa sees it differently: while dressed as Erika she embraced the ethos of “Erika Jayne” (not Erika Girardi) and was able to get in touch with a different side of herself. Kyle keeps pointing out that Erika Jayne doesn’t talk that way, but Lipsa keeps focusing on how her interpretation of the EJ character made her feel, and in the end, a positive resolution happened with Kim. Teddi and Kyle are fixated on how it should make Erika uncomfortable that Lipsa was using her.

Erika Jayne

There is never and never will be a positive resolution with Kim (or Kyle). I don’t know what Kyle and Teddi are doing, but it’s clear that Kyle is on a divide and conquer routine in trying to sew a seed of discord between Lipsa and Erika. Thankfully Erika sees right through this. She doesn’t care that Kyle and Teddi were uncomfortable, she’s just happy that Kim and Lisa are moving forward. In fact, Erika is now angry that Kyle and Teddi are so obviously trying to create a problem in a way that is more comical than Erika’s cartoon drawing of an outfit.

Things end in a testy way, with dinner ruined, and even Dorit recognizing that Teddi is behaving as Kyle’s “hench-woman.” Is Teddi going to now cry that Kyle manipulated her to do her dirty work? Accountability now, Teddster!

This is an aside: I wasn’t under the impression that a “Skinny Margarita” was a thing. Aren’t all margaritas the same? I mean unless you’re at TGIFridays I doubt people are whipping out mixers to concoct a margarita. Maybe Teddi needs to just start carrying a bottle of Skinny girl in her purse? Or else Bethenny Frankel is gonna start demanding a royalty check every time the phrase “Skinny Margarita” is uttered. Even though that’s actually a classic margarita.


[Photo Credits: Bravo]