LuAnn de Lesseps has already dished on this season’s Real Housewives of New York drama, but the outspoken Countess had even more to say to Wetpaint Entertainment about the explosive reunion show. Read on to find out about Andy Cohen’s breakdown, conflict with Alex McCord, and the evolution of Kelly Bensimon.
Wetpaint Entertainment: This reunion was rowdy, even by Housewives standards. How did you feel coming out of it?
Countess LuAnn: Exhausted. [laughing] I felt good, because I am who I am, and I don’t apologize for it, and there was a lot of yelling, but you’ll never see me losing it. When Andy’s going “Please, be quiet,” he’s not talking to me, because I wasn’t speaking. There’s a lot of bickering going on, and a lot of name-calling — and to see grown women call each other names is unfortunate. It got nasty. I just never go there, and I hope people see that when they watch the reunion — that they don’t have to name-call to get their point across.
There’s a video of Andy telling you guys to shut up about a hundred times — were you surprised when he lost his cool?
Yes! And I said to him, “Can you say ‘Be quiet’ instead of ‘Shut up’?” And he agreed. He gets upset, because the women don’t listen to him.
It seemed like nobody was a fan of Alex by the end of the season. Was there stuff that happened offscreen that we didn’t get to see? What was the nature of that conflict?
There was no conflict. That was Alex’s Drama School 101, Acting 101. Because she has no drama. She had her modeling — which we’ve all seen — and that was pretty much it for her this season. She’s not singing with Natalie Cole. She’s not organizing a trip to Morocco. She needed something, and unfortunately, she chose to lash out on me — which is pretty daring, I must say. And I said to her, “If you wanna start with me, you better finish with me.” She was trying to dig stuff up, but she couldn’t, because I’ve done nothing to that woman but be nice and gracious and invite her to Morocco. It’s like, where? Same with Ramona — “You did this, you did that” — but when it came up, the story about her husband, I said, “Not once did I ever ask you after that trip to Morocco or say anything about your marriage.” Because I would not do that. I don’t like breaking up people’s marriages. I’m all for protecting the family, and obviously Ramona doesn’t have the same moral standards.
We loved watching your friendship with Kelly develop over the course of the season. Do you think she changed from Season 2, or was she just misunderstood?
I think it’s all of the above. I think she probably saw herself last season, and thought she didn’t handle things a certain way because she was still kinda new at that point. So she became a little more savvy, and I think that she didn’t have all the women breathing down her neck, so that took some anxiety off of her — knowing that Jill and I were her friends. And were behind her. That changes everything — when you feel like you’re not alone on the playing field. She still says silly, funny things, but that’s Kelly — she’s like a big kid. Who was afraid of being hurt by people.
It was such a wonderful moment for you in the finale to get to perform alongside Natalie Cole. Who’s your dream duet partner, if you could perform or record with anyone?
Stevie Nicks. Love her. Or Bonnie Raitt. I love country-rock, and I grew up singing Stevie Nicks’ music, so that would be very cool for me.
You and Jacques seem to have such a strong relationship — do you have any romantic advice for people?
I think you have to close one door before you can open another one. You have to take changes, be courageous, open up your heart — as much as you might have had it broken in the past. You have to keep positive and confident. That’s what the song is about, too — it’s not only about the high life but it’s about — “Confident and cool, passion is the key, live the life you want to live, there’s no sympathy, don’t forget to see the best, life can be so soft, the little things can take you down so it’s best to brush them off.” That’s the lyrics of the song.
All of the New York housewives have really engaged with their gay fanbase and vocalized their support for same-sex marriage, which got discussed a little bit in last week’s reunion show — what was your reaction when the bill passed?
Oh, I was so happy for everybody. We marched for gay marriage over the Brooklyn Bridge, so to see it get passed and come to fruition for all the people out there who want to be married — I think it’s great. I’m very happy!
Countess LuAnn's latest single, "Chic C'est La Vie," and her app for iPhone and iPad are both available on iTunes.