Welcome back to ice fishing with The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City! As this week’s episode opens — sans taglines — we’re still stuck in a standoff between Meredith Marks and Jen Shah. They’re both seething on the ice. And neither wants to approach the other for a third round of fighting, no matter how much Lisa Barlow is trying to mediate. (Though you have to admire her tenacity. Between literally putting Jen’s backpack on to stop her from leaving and chasing after that $70,000 tennis bracelet, the girl was not giving up.)
Eventually, it’s Jen‘s assistant Stuart Smith who’s able to get through to her. But only by making the situation all about her, of course. Because Jen’s the one who needs peace, OK? Not Brooks Marks. Or Meredith. Or any of the other people she’s terrorized. Just Jen. So she finally offers Meredith the teary apology she’s been waiting for. And even though it’s not ideal, Meredith recognizes it’s probably the best she’s going to get from her frenemy. So she takes it with a chilly hug. And even appreciates Jen’s offer to apologize to Brooks personally. But that doesn’t mean she’s about to trust her fellow ‘Wife moving forward.
Next, we’re back in Salt Lake City, where Lisa is meeting with her friends Angie Harrington and SaraJane. If you recognize Angie, it’s because she made a cameo appearance last season during Lisa‘s power lunch. After RHOSLC was announced at BravoCon in 2019, Angie’s was one of the first names I heard whispered around Utah as a potential Housewife. Then she was rumored to be a Friend. And while she test filmed for both Season 1 and Season 2, she seems to be this week’s unofficial Friend — given the fact that she’s getting her own storyline and confessional.
Angie‘s throwing a fundraiser for Encircle, a Utah nonprofit focused on providing therapy, support and a safe place for young LGBTQ+ people to gather and find a community. Personally, I can’t even begin to tell you how important Encircle’s mission is — particularly in a place like Utah, where suicide rates soar among LGBTQ+ youth and college students. However, Angie’s mostly concerned that her event will put Lisa and Whitney Rose in the same room. Lisa still doesn’t appreciate how Whitney tried to assassinate her character last season. Or that Whitney and Angie have suddenly become fourth or fifth “inbred polygamy cousins” since last year. (Welcome to Utah, where polygamy makes everyone related…) But she’s never one to tell anyone who to be friends with.
However, a couple days later, Angie meets with Whitney for lunch at La Trattoria di Francesco in Sugar House. And she’s got drama brewing around her event. But first, she has to bond with Whitney over their shared ancestor, who was a bodyguard to Mormon prophets Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. Ok, back to the event. It turns out that five hours after her meeting with Lisa, Angie’s caterers called and pulled out of the fundraiser. The moment she hears this, Whitney’s sure that Lisa’s behind it. But why would Lisa want to sabotage the event? And why is Angie talking about it with Whitney rather than her friend of 20 years?
The night of the fundraiser quickly arrives and it’s a ’70s-themed casino night! Mind you, this is taking place in Provo, just blocks away from BYU. A casino fundraiser for an LGBTQ+ charity? And they’re serving alcohol? Trust me, this couldn’t be more transgressive for the buttoned up college town where Lisa and Heather Gay went to school. All the ‘Wives are there in their various interpretations of ’70s glam — most with their husbands in tow. However, Mary Cosby would rather avoid a run-in with Jen. So much so that she tries to climb over the railing of a staircase rather than walk past her…
However, Jen manages to corner Mary inside the party. And she’s bound and determined to include her former nemesis in the whole self-improvement narrative she’s pushing. Jen plays nice and suggests they get their families together, but Mary’s not having it. She instantly rebuffs the suggestion, and blurts out that quite frankly she was under the impression Jen didn’t like her all that much. OK, like, at all. Of course, Jen completely denies this, and insists she’s ready to be friends again. The pair manage to pinky-promise their way into a truce. But how long do you think that will honestly last?
Meanwhile, Lisa makes her grand entrance, subtly snubbing Whitney as she makes a beeline for newbie Jennie Nguyen. And after nailing down a million-dollar donation to Encircle and a quick costume change, Angie‘s ready to confront her bestie. She pulls Lisa aside for a private chat and lays out all the catering drama that’s been swirling. Lisa doesn’t understand what exactly this has to do with her, but Angie insists that now “everyone around her” is saying Lisa’s behind it. And in her confessional, she says she wouldn’t put meddling past the tequila queen.
Angie thinks Lisa sabotaged the caterer because she mentioned she was friends with Whitney. But when she compares her friendship with Whitney to Lisa being friends with both Jen and Meredith, things take a turn. Lisa storms out of the room, only to return with Meredith on her arm to put up a united front. (Never mind a very confused Jen bringing up the rear, wondering what she’s just walked into.) But when Whitney walks into all the screaming, Lisa immediately tells her to get out.
Whitney starts taking Lisa to task over apparently telling Angie not to acknowledge being related to her, and not to follow her on social media. And suddenly, it’s all clear to Lisa: Whitney and Angie are trying to take her down on camera. Telling Angie she’s “heartbroken,” Lisa walks away from the confrontation and right out of the party. But Whitney claims she’s an expert by now in her cast mate’s behavior. And when Lisa disengages, it’s because she’s guilty of something…
TELL US – WERE YOU SURPRISED TO SEE JEN AND MEREDITH HUG IT OUT? SHOULD ANGIE HAVE BEEN AN OFFICIAL FRIEND THIS SEASON? WILL JEN AND MARY’S PINKY PROMISE LAST? ARE YOU TEAM LISA OR TEAM WHITNEY AND ANGIE? DO YOU THINK LISA TRIED TO SABOTAGE THE FUNDRAISER? OR DID ANGIE AND WHITNEY PLOT A TAKEDOWN?
[Photo Credit: Bravo]