The Real Housewives brand has come a long way since the ladies of Orange County first kicked off the franchise in 2006. Since then, there has been a revolving door of Housewives and while there have been some fabulous new additions, it’s hard to compete with the OGs.
Here are our picks for the greatest OG Housewives.
Vicki Gunvalson (Real Housewives of Orange County)
Vicki Gunvalson is a Bravo legend. The Illinois native was one of five women who helped launch the franchise in 2006. And if we’re being honest, she was the best part of the show. The Mama Bear kept us laughing as she micromanaged her children’s lives while simultaneously being a successful career woman.
Vicki has had no shortage of iconic moments. I mean, who could forget the family van drama in Season 2? Even Bravo God Andy Cohen loves it. He told author Dave Quinn that it is his favorite Real Housewives moment in Dave’s book Not All Diamonds and Rosé: The Inside Story of The Real Housewives From the People Who Lived It.
Whether she’s hard at work or having fun (Woo-hoo!), this OG Orange County star has our heart.
Luann de Lesseps (Real Housewives of New York)
Make way for the Countess! Luann de Lesseps gave us so much during her 13 years on Real Housewives of New York. The Crappie Lake star wore many hats. Some days she was a classy uptown mother-of-two, and some days she was having a secret rendezvous with a pirate. And we love that for her!
The Cabaret star kept RHONY fun! From her roasting Alex McCord’s choice of footwear to her falling in the bushes during a boozy night in Mexico, Lu knows how to make good TV.
Bethenny Frankel (Real Housewives of New York)
Another New York lady that deserves a spot on our list is Bethenny Frankel. The entrepreneur offered something different to the franchise. When the show first began, she wasn’t a wealthy housewife. She was a single woman trying to make a name for herself in New York City.
Aside from being an inspiration to fans, Bethenny also gave us some pretty legendary Real Housewives moments. The Skinny Girl mogul never ran at the sight of conflict. Instead, she often put herself right in the line of fire. From Scary Island to her legendary “Mention it all” argument with Ramona Singer in the Berkshires, the girl knew how to keep us on our toes.
NeNe Leakes (Real Housewives of Atlanta)
You’re probably not surprised to see NeNe Leakes on this list. The Bravo star helped launch Real Housewives of Atlanta in 2008 and became a fan favorite instantly. NeNe made RHOA a joy to watch. She brought her legendary sense of humor to every scene and kept viewers laughing with her savage remarks about her castmates. The show just isn’t the same without her.
Teresa Giudice (Real Housewives of New Jersey)
Teresa Giudice has been a Jersey Housewife since the show’s inception. The Dancing With the Stars alum is a major reason for the show’s success, given that she is frequently right at the center of the drama.
Kyle Richards (Real Housewives of Beverly Hills)
Karen Huger (Real Housewives of Potomac)
Make some noise for the Grand Dame! Karen Huger helped kick off Real Housewives of Potomac in 2016 along with five other women. The Virginia native had no trouble standing out and quickly became a fan favorite.
Miss Karen knew how to bring the DRAMA! From her beef with Gizelle Bryant to her iconic one-liners, the Bravo star showed up to work. I mean, who could forget when she gave Gizelle the framed plaque featuring the rules of etiquette? Iconic.
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