This season of Real Housewives of Atlanta has come to a close with the main event – Sheree Whitfield’s fashion show. That’s right – after 14 years of waiting, Sheree has finally delivered. Usually, Real Housewives finales are filled with drama and fighting. But to my delight, the season ended on a major high note. So let’s dive in to my top 5 takeaways from the finale.
Kenya Moore Hair Care (Insert Drum Line)
My RHOA Queen Kenya Moore is”twirling to a CVS near you.” Truly. Kenya Moore Haircare has made it into 500 CVS stores, which is a huge accomplishment. So Kenya arrives at a local CVS to cut the purple ribbon in front of her product runner and her castmates are there to support. Kandi Burruss, Sanya Richards-Ross and Drew Sidora all show up for the low-key but important moment in Kenya’s success.
But the one thing on their minds is Sheree’s upcoming fashion show. At this point, Kenya reveals that Sheree told her she only has 5 out of 22 pieces. Drew does the breakdown of how many pieces Sheree was supposed to have and the math ain’t mathing. Drew also can’t help but get in one more dig about Sheree not paying her back for the birthday party they co-hosted. Ok, I want to side with Drew on this because it’s the principal! But I’m need to Drew to let it go. If she knew Sheree didn’t pay her bills, why did she go in on and event with her?
Sorry, Drew, but you should have known better. Now have some doggie bones and relax.
Marlo’s Troubled Childhood Catches Up With Her
One of the most complex parts about Marlo Hampton is her upbringing. Which has played out all season, presenting us with a softer, more vulnerable Marlo. And that was on full display this episode. Marlo’s mother Emma comes to visit and it’s the first time they have seen each other in 3 years.
Things are rocky at best, with Marlo seemingly desperate for an apology. Who could blame her? She describes her Mother Emma as a long time alcohol and drug abuser and notes that Emma left her when she was only 7 years old. Marlo admits that she has unresolved trauma from her mother’s substance abuse issues. And is triggered when Emma asks Marlo to bring her boyfriend out to be with her while they hang out at Le’Archive.
Even Marlo’s fabulous feather boots can’t overshadow the tension. Kandi shows up to meet Emma and the three have an honest conversation about what life was like for both Marlo and her mother while she was using. Kandi comes away with a better understanding of Marlo and her issues and so do viewers.
This was not the Marlo we expected to get this season, but maybe it was the Marlo we needed.
Sanya and Ross To The Rescue
I haven’t minced words when it comes to how I feel about Sanya and her first season. I’ve found her to be thirsty and well, kind of annoying. But in one episode, she might have changed my mind. She invites Marlo and her nephews over to her house so that her husband, Aaron Ross, can spend some quality time with them.
Both Sanya and Aaron explain that they want to offer Marlo’s nephews the positive male influence they are currently lacking. Aaron teaches them your “typical” guy stuff, like changing a tire and the oil in a car. Aaron makes sure to give them plenty of positive reinforcement, and the boys are beaming under his praise.
Sanya says in her confessional that she wants Marlo to know that she has a village to support her while she cares for two teenage boys. Ok, maybe I do like Sanya. What a caring and supportive thing to do, which is a rarity on Real Housewives. Sanya and her husband recognizing Marlo’s need and taking action wasn’t just for the camera was a true act of friendship. We love to see it.
She By She’s Sweating
Ok, I’m feeling more than a little bad for Sheree at this point. She now only has 11 pieces of clothing the day before her show. And she has no idea when they are supposed to show up. Rawan, her fashion show coordinator, tries her best to reassure Sheree, but Sheree is right to be rattled. She feels like this is a repeat of her past failure and it’s pretty much out of her hands at this point.
She goes to visit the venue and at least she has models lined up and decor set. It’s not my favorite – the black and gold is a bit outdated, especially for a streetwear-focused fashion line. I’m not so sure Rawan saw the right vision, but Sheree seems happy so what do I know.
While Sheree fusses over the details, her ex (AKA Prison Bae) Tyrone Gilliams shows up. Sheree is just as surprised as we are. Why exactly is Tyrone here, on camera, when he used the cameras as an excuse to ditch her in Philly? Sheree is starting to realize what we have all known – that Tyrone is looking for some camera time. But on his own terms, when he is up for it.
The former couple fight over who owes who and apology and Sheree refuses to give in. So does Tyrone. Apollo Nida shows up to walk in the show and tries to talk some sense into Tyrone. But Prison Bae shuts him down and Apollo takes a moment in his confessional to throw out Tyrone’s excuse for his actions in Philly.
The producers shade Apollo in his confessional, pointing out on the cyron that he’s not a legal scholar. But he was in jail and cites some legal code that refute’s Tyrone’s assertion that he couldn’t appear on camera. I will never forgive Tyrone for making our Sheree look foolish and I’m happy to know she has moved on.
She By She Did It!
Ok, I promise that is the last time I will make a She by Sheree pun but really, she did it, guys! We have finally made it to the fashion show and this time, it has fashions. 27 pieces to be exact. And everyone has turned out to support Sheree at the “hottest ticket in town.” Those are Sheree’s words, not mine. But she’s not wrong – over 200 people packed into the venue to see the show.
Tyrone shows up again and this time with some grocery store flowers. The producers can’t help but throw up a $14.99 price tag on the screen, which is what he deserves.
The women are surprised to see him and offer their assessments in their confessionals. Sanya calls him “meh” and Kenya describes him as sketchy. Then the Shade Assassin tells us that like his prison sentence, Tyrone’s time is up. Chef’s kiss.
Despite being 2+ hours late, and Dwight Eubanks about to take his purple fur shawl and walk out, Sheree’s show finally begins. Models hit the runway and I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit confused. Much like Rawan’s decor, the line isn’t very cohesive. We have athletic wear like leggings and sports bras. We have men’s monochromatic t-shirts and pants. Sheree is sporting a military green canvas kaftan. I really don’t want to rain on Sheree’s parade but….I guess I just did.
But the ladies of RHOA had no such critiques and LOVED it. They cheered the whole time and told each other what pieces they wanted to order. Even Apollo’s all red sleeveless sweatsuit got applause.
This truly was Sheree’s big moment. At the end of the show, she sauntered out to a standing ovation, sparklers shooting off and loud cheers. Sheree did it, and the women were thrilled to hold her up and give her the praise she earned. In a franchise known for its epic shade, this was a really special moment. Full disclosure – I got a little teary eyed. Maybe I’m getting soft or maybe Drew’s overly sparkly boot just hurt my eyes. Either way, this finale was one for the books.
TELL US – DID YOU THINK SHEREE WOULD REALLY PULL IT OFF? WHAT DID YOU THINK OF HER FASHIONS? HOW DID MARLO DO FOR HER FIRST SEASON? SHOULD SHE GET A SECOND? WHO SHOULD STAY AND WHO SHOULD GO?
[Photo Credit: Charles Sykes/Bravo]