The episode opens with newbie Housewives Aviva and Heather meeting for a couples dinner with their cute, tweed-jacket wearing husbands.. Before the dinner begins, Aviva let’s us know that she really, really loves her husband, Reid. We mean, she really, really, REALLY loves him. And hey, that’s fine! Reid seems like the perfect House-husband. He’s handsome, quiet when he needs to be (read: the womenfolk are yammering hilariously) but isn’t so boring that we start to mistake him for a piece of of furniture. He’s no Simon replacement — could anyone ever really replace little Lord Von Kempen? — but he’s not boring.
At the dinner, Heather reveals that she is “Jewish by injection,” which is just a funny little way to say that she’s a non-Jew who married a Jew but hasn’t converted yet. However, even though she’s not really Jewish, Heather is definitely starting to come off as the most Jewish housewife on the show. So far, in two episodes, we’ve heard her utter no less than two Yiddish phrases with the same easy, breezy confidence that she revealed that she knows Beyonce or that, you know, her dad just died. In fact, until she mentioned that she was raised protestant, we were under the impression that she was Jewish.
Speaking of dinner table revelations, Aviva casually lets slip that her ex-husband told her that he did sleep with LuAnn and Sonja (or, as Sonja like to call it, they “danced). You have to admire Aviva for laughing the whole thing off. Even with the Bravo producers clenching their fists and hoping for some sort of jealous ex-wife argument to break out, Aviva won’t let it happen. Kudos Aviva!
On another side of Manhattan, Ramona and LuAnn are meeting on a park bench to discuss THE THING THAT RAMONA SAID. LuAnn, sitting tall and straight like a proud, vest-wearing Redwood tree, once again demands an apology out of Ramona. However, Ramona is having none of it, and starts launching into tirade about how the Countess is pretentious and makes snide remarks to everyone. LuAnn, with an I’ve-seen-all-this-crap-before coolness, deflects Ramona’s explanation, and drops the blackmail bomb, which stuns Ramona into shutting up. After picking up her jaw from the floor, Ramona says that she’s never threatened LuAnn, but she apologizes if LuAnn took something she said the wrong way. “What other dirty tricks do you have to pull out of your Pinot-filled hat," LuAnn tells Ramona, which we think is her way of saying thanks, but no thanks to Ramona’s olive branch. Eventually, in an odd, un-Housewives twist, the two agree to bury away their problems and move on with their lives.
Of course, while LuAnn and Ramona pretend to “forget” the THE THING THAT RAMONA SAID, we can mull over one of great Real Housewives questions of our time: Whose side are you on? Here’s the thing: We can see both sides of the argument. Ramona loves to run her mouth and, in the heat of the moment, we can see her saying something dramatic to LuAnn. However, in Ramona’s mind, this doesn’t mean that she actually threatened LuAnn. Meanwhile, we could see LuAnn interpreting one of Ramona’s Ramonaisms to mean something deeper and scarier than it actually was. Of course, this isn’t Real Housewives of New Jersey, this is New York, and part of the reason we love this cast of characters is that they can act crazy without actually resorting the scary threats.
Oh, by the way, thank Bravo, goddess of pure elegance, Ramona and LuAnn were both live-tweeting the re-watching of their real-life fight during the episode. Judging from their tweets, it looks like the drama is far from over, and we would like to note that one of Ramona’s tweets contains no less than 22 exclamation points. So, all that talk of burying their problems and taking “the high road” was all just a bunch of nonsense. Thank god!
Let’s move on: We finally got to see more of Carole, the Housewife who is really way, way, way too cool to be a Housewife. She shops for vintage clothes at expensive-looking vintage stores. She confidently flirts with 20-something male models. She’s in a “cool but casual” relationship with Russ Irwin, a musician who tours with Aerosmith, and she doesn’t care one bit that he might be sleeping with other women while they are apart. Oh, and in the ultimate show of un-Housewifery-ness, she rides in convertibles with boys with her bare feet hanging over the dashboard. Have we ever even seen a Housewife without her shoes before? Even at the beach they wear 6-inch Louboutin wedges.
However, Carole isn’t just all cool girl. She also knows how to get involved in the drama, even if it is purely for our enjoyment. During a GLAAD Awards event, Carole sits very calmly with Ramona while Ramona, hair-fluffed, bedazzled gown strap hanging off her ivory shoulder, tries to ask her is she was a “spokeswoman” for ABC News. (Don’t ever change, Ramona.) Carole just rolls her eyes and laughs it off.
Carole, like Sonja, is simply cool because she is herself. She can ride around with her Billy Ray Cyrus look alike boyfriend (what is with male musicians over the age of 40 and that shaggy razor-cut bob haircut?) as easily as she can go shopping with the Housewives, simply because she refuses to be anyone other than herself. In a show that is all about fragile egos and petty arguments, a woman with a strong sense of self is a welcome breath of fresh air.
Speaking of Sonja, we only got to see a glimpse of the golden-haired beauty, but it was a very enjoyable moment. See, Sonja’s is looking to fix up her hurricane-ravaged town house, so she invites a contractor by the name of Rich to her home to help her solve her leaks. Sonja being Sonja, she immediately starts flirting with him, positioning herself elegantly against a red wall that perfectly compliments her sleeveless red turtleneck stretch top. We also learn some of Sonja’s tricks of flirting, which include jumping up and down in a frantic fashion to draw a man’s attention to your bouncing bosoms. Oh, and repeatedly mentioning that your hapless assistant — who may or may not be sleeping on a couch in your hallway — calls you “Miss Morgan.” In short, this stocky, warm-faced man tickled Sonja’s fancy and, in her words, she’d like to cook for him in her toaster oven.
The new housewives are really starting to fit in nicely with the new season. All three of the newbies bring their own air of something. Aviva is beautiful and elegant, Heather is earthy, and Carole is just cool. The established Housewives are already mixing in the newbies with their drama as easily as they can mix in over-the-knee boots into their fall wardrobes. This is going to be a very fun season.
Other things that need to be discussed:
- Is it just us, or does Heather’s husband have some sort of indistinguishable accent? It was like a mix of Spanish, Italian, and possibly Israeli.
- Life lesson: If you are LuAnn’s child, you better be doing your homework and getting good grades. Otherwise, LuAnn will turn off the sophisticated attitude and bring the hammer of punishment down on you!
- Speaking of LuAnn, Jacques is back! We missed our cheerful lil’ French buddy. However, Jacques might not be the best disciplinarian in the world.
- How fabulous was that vintage leopard jacket that Carole was wearing in the vintage store?
- Reality star crossover alert! RuPaul’s Drag Race star Manila Luzon was the flaw-free Queen who attempted to introduce Sonja at the GLAAD Awards! Bonus: Manilla’s boyfriend Sahara Davenport could be seen dancing with Sonja toward the end of the episode.