Category Archives: Real Housewives of New York City

How Your Reality TV Sausage Gets Made

As I’ve slowly outed myself as a lover of reality TV – well, some reality TV – one of the things I often hear/read is that it’s all fake, or it’s all scripted, or the producers engineer scenarios. I don’t fully agree with that – most of these people are not good enough actors to convey such real emotions – but I also couldn’t fully disagree. I’ve always wondered how much is real and how much is as fake as Teresa’s tan.

Never thought I’d say this, but thank goodness for Jill Zarin! Good old J-Z was on Watch What Happens Live with Andy the other night, and among many other things, she explained how she engineered her conflict with Bethenney for ratings. Nice work, ding dong! Like so many before her, it seems Jill’s persona as a reality “star” at some point became more real to her than her persona as a “sane person.” I feel a little tiny bit bad for her. Don’t get me wrong: she is bananas. But her breakdown of how the whole conflict with Bethenney played out was actually really interesting. Continue reading

New Jersey Reunion Parts 2, 3, Infinity . . .

I usually watch Bravo shows to feel better about life. There’s the schadenfreude (duh!), there’s the pretty clothes and shoes and hair, and there’s the faux Caribbean jazz that is the soundtrack of all Bravo shows. Pretty much always puts me in a good mood.

But the reunion of The Real Housewives of New Jersey made me feel nothing but down. I wish I could get back the three hours I spent watching it. Oof. THREE. HOURS.

Quite frankly, (I’m Aviva now!) the problem is Teresa and Joe Giudice and their outsize role in the storylines of the show. I’m a little afraid Teresa’s army of rabid fans will somehow crash this site if I say it, but I think the Giudices are some of the worst people I’ve ever seen on television. They are delusional, angry, vindictive, rage-y, and full of hate and envy. And my boyfriend Andy Cohen and his producers have allowed their shenanigans to hijack the show.

We keep hearing how close Teresa was to her brother Joe before he got married. She gets teary and agitated whenever she talks about how Joe changed when he met Melissa. From the beginning, I’ve thought Teresa’s attachment to her brother was way beyond just “close”, right on in to “not normal.” Her jealousy of his attention to Melissa is a little bizarre.

The single story this season, up to and including the reunion, was Teresa vs. Everyone Else. And it was just boring. Yes, the contrast between the charming Season One Teresa and the vindictive Season Four witch is pretty bleak. But that doesn’t make it interesting. These shows work when there are relationships of all kinds – some love, some hate, some indifference – and when the alliances shift around. Jersey had none of that this year and it was ultimately lifeless.

I think this picture sums up the season: (after the jump) Continue reading

Don’t Make Room for Daddy: This Week’s Real Housewives of New York City

Ugh, George is back. Why didn’t he just stay gone? Gross. Here we go.

After the show opens on Aviva and Horny Goat Weed George buying $400 worth of crap in a health food store, we see Sonja returning from a meeting with her husband’s divorce lawyers. She thought she would be talking to him face-to-face but evidently, he just sent the lawyers in to tell her she’s not getting any money. Geez, what do you marry an rich old geezer for if not to get some money out of it? Sonja must have skipped some classes at Gold Digger School. I do feel badly for Sonja here – this whole situation seems sad and ugly and it’s definitely part of the reason for her unraveling. But I think the saddest part of all of it was her coming home and sharing a real sad moment in her life with these 2 interns or whatever the hell they are, and they obviously totally do not give a shit.

“Hey, when you’re done crying, could we maybe talk about me being paid?”

Moving on, we see Heather planning a fashion show to benefit an organization that funds pediatric liver donation. Good for Heather. Seriously. I love Heather and I love that she actually walks the walk. My favorite moment was when Heather asked Aviva to be in the fashion show and you can tell Luann’s all, “Um, hello! Model! Sitting right next to you!

“Oh, grrreat. I’m so happy for you, Aviva. Thanks for cutting in to my camera time.”

Continue reading

Bravo’s Sneaky Editors Did It Again!

We frequently hear from people on reality shows – particularly the villains – that it’s the editing that makes them look bad. Sure, they may have said whatever horribly offensive thing they said, but they always claim it’s “out of context.”

We’ve been seeing Aviva’s “You’re both white trash, quite frankly” bit in endless Bravo teasers since before the season even began. When the episode aired, we saw Aviva haughtily calling out Ramonja. Reaction shots make it look like they are shocked and hurt by Aviva’s accusations. But was it really Sonja and Ramona that Aviva was addressing? Or did Bravo’s editors pull a fast one?

Now it can be revealed! In raw video my sources obtained, we finally see what really went down that night in St. Barths. Click through if you can handle the truth. Continue reading

It’s Time We Talked About the Real HouseHUSBANDS

On Sunday night’s Real Housewives of New Jersey, Rich Wakile, husband of Kathy Wakile, explained in a voiceover that his favorite dessert is Kathy. Why? Because “it tastes like fish, and always gets the job done.” Ugh. Barf. It almost broke Twitter, especially when Rich himself tweeted that he was talking about something else and Bravo edited it. Riiight. Side eye, Rich, side eye.

It got me thinking about how many of the husbands on these shows are either comical, revolting, or both. (Like always, I’m ignoring those tricks in Miami.They offer nothing except Mama Elsa. Snooze.) For the sake of brevity, I’ll only discuss the shows currently airing.

Let’s begin.

Rich Wakile :: The Embarrassment

The comment about tasting like fish was only the most recent of Rich’s antics. From using the phrase “cake blocker” in one of his wife’s business meetings, to asking for a tampon (“My wife just cut my balls awf!”) in another, to the blurred-out boner on the Napa trip, Rich is one gross-out after another. And I won’t even comment on the popped collars.

Joe Gorga :: The Meatball

Teresa’s wee musclebound brother was first introduced to us in the infamous Christening episode. He came off like a scary, drunk roid-rager. Calling his sister “garbage”, throwing punches, and howling in Italian to their father “I’m ya SON!”, he seemed pretty awful. Telling the viewers he needs sex every day to “release the poison” did nothing to increase his likability. But I have to admit that like a rare Jersey fungus, Joey G. has grown on me. I find his unflagging support for Melissa’s “singing career” and his seemingly genuine desire to make things right with his sister and her family to be endearing. Charming, even. I think under the excessive waxing and tanning, there beats a good heart. Continue reading

Vacation, All I Never Wanted: This Week’s Real Housewives of New York City

The episode picks up with Part 2 of the St. Barth’s trip, where the ladies are continuing their vacation. (BTW, what are they vacationing from? Exhausting lunches in 4-star New York City restaurants?!) Some are enjoying it – I see you, Luann! – and some are acting like complete and utter assholes.

Since I could never do a recap as great as Two Winey Bitches, and I can’t steal Humor and Spice’s brilliant grading scale, I’m going to tell my ADHD version of the story in pictures. And gifs, of course.

“Wow. This is so much more awkward than I even imagined.”

I’m beyond thrilled that the episode opens on the “party” at the house. Seeing that Low Budget Johnny Depp and some random St. Bartheian are the only guests? Next. Level. Laughs.

Luann is nuts if she thinks anyone is buying the whole “my Italian friends” thing. She was definitely with Gutter Jack Sparrow the night before and any doubts about that were blown to bits by the look she gave him as Ramona cornered his ass and tried to pump him.

For information, you pervs!

Moving on to Sonja in the (Rundown Part of) the City. I’m sad to watch her unraveling this season. Really. I hope that sometime between the filming and the airing of this season she’s gotten some help. A friend and I were debating whether it’s alcohol or just a general breaking down or both. I’m gonna say both. Exhibit: Every single thing she does.

“A little Sonja stinks up…wait…f*cks up…I mean SPICES up any party. Pass me my glass.”

On to Aviva. Sigh, Aviva. She really came across like a complete crackpot in this episode, didn’t she? Poor Reid! What must life be like with someone that neurotic? He seems like such a chill guy but I can’t imagine anyone being able to tolerate that level of cray day in and day out. Either Reid is just an unbelievably great husband or he’s got a chick on the side. Hmm, maybe one of the Gallery Girls?

“Any sympathy you feel for me right now is going to vanish when you see me go bonkers the minute we arrive at the house.”

Carole is taunting me. One minute she bugs with her “I’m so over it all but still a cast member on a reality show” attitude, and the next I’m wondering why the ladies can’t all be as smart and interesting and level-headed as she is. (Is Sonja telling the truth about Clooney “doing” her for a year? I need some intel on that.) Whatever. She seems pretty damn cool. And I know I’ll alienate some RHONY fans by saying this, but I love Heather. I do! Come on, admit it: in the midst of all the shenanigans going down around the island, you would love to be on the boat with these two.

“Carole, the dank you brought is OFF THE HOOK! Where’s that pipe?”

I hate that I’m going to wrap this up with Ramona. Again. But I have to say that I am so relieved that this episode finally aired so I never have to see that footage of her screaming, “Take a Xanax! CALM DOWN!” ever again. Ugh, every single time it aired during previews, I felt my blood pressure explode. I wanted to – yes – take a Xanax.

“I’m going to make YOU calm down by screaming as loudly as possible, amplifying my voice by cupping my scarily shaking hands around my mouth!”

I’m really enjoying the trip to Slutty Island. It’s nice to see the ladies yelling at each other somewhere other than New York City. Next week? I’m pretty sure we’re gonna see all Sonja’s bits flopping around the pool. I can’t WAIT.

What do you think? How does Slutty Island with Sonja and her cigs compare to Scary Island with Kelly and her bag of candy?

All photos: bravotv.com
Gif: realitytvgifs.tumblr.com 

Young Lady, Pull Yourself Together: An Open Letter to Sonja Morgan

Sonja, sit down. We need to talk about some things that are gonna be hard for you to hear.

When last night’s episode opened on the meeting in your apartment, you were already making me tense. Say what you will about Heather, but she’s a hugely successful business woman and she’s offered you her help, along with help from James Benard (who probably lies awake wondering why he ever agreed to do this). And you bring Ramona to sit in and bark out her critiques in between taking phone calls? Honey, why? What were you thinking?

Now this is where it gets hard. *deep breath* Continue reading

Dirty Ol’ Dad: A Crankypants Recap of This Week’s Real Housewives of NYC

I’m cranky and tired and just finally got around to watching Monday’s episode of The Real Housewives of New York City. What better time to throw out some random thoughts?

  • First, the GRILL on Aviva’s dad! I mean, whaaat? Every time he spoke I could barely pay attention because the contrast between those giant, bleached chompers and his leather face was too much.

    Ew.

  • Aviva seemed to handle him surprisingly well. For someone with so many phobias and anxieties, it surprised me how laid-back she was about her father’s behavior. Offering someone their “first squirting orgasm” while seated at the dinner table?! Wow, Luann was right: money CAN’T buy you class.
  • Oh, and when Gramps said to Sonja, “You’re not wearing panties.” Cringe! Request: Can the word panties never be used again please? At least not to describe the undergarments of anyone over the age of 7?
  • I have a suspicion that Sonja’s revulsion toward Ol’ Leatherface wouldn’t have been so dramatic if the cameras weren’t rolling. She can act disgusted all she wants but she knows the dude is LOADED and obviously, being with an old, rich guy hasn’t been a problem for her before. Maybe it was just because he was so over the top. But remember: this is a woman who’s trying to create a sexy TOASTER OVEN. That spells desperation like nothing else.

Moving on.

  • Ok, Ramona. She is a terrible, terrible person. Telling Aviva what to do with the prosthesis she’s been wearing for 35 years?! How does anyone tolerate this woman?  Ugh, Ramona. Shut yer stupid facehole.
  • There was just a smidge of Countess this week. However, despite her lack of onscreen minutes, she provided my favorite bit from this week’s episode. When Carole confronted (or whatever that was) Luann about asking her designer friend for a dress, Luann said, “Well, you know, I was doing that big shoot for Life & Style.” Countess say WHAT?! She is talking about a grocery store checkout line tabloid as if it’s a spread in W or Vogue! She is acting as though a “shoot” for a magazine that has a giant yellow sticker on the cover screaming “Only 2.99!” is something to brag about. I just can’t with this broad.

Oh, these people are just way too awesome. I can’t wait for next week.

 

photo via Bravotv.com

Bitchin’ & Ramoanin’

Yesterday I met a couple of friends I hadn’t seen in way too long for mid-afternoon cocktails. It felt luxurious, in a very Housewives-y way, to be sipping drinks while other people were still at work. If it hadn’t been 900 degrees and our dresses hadn’t been stuck to us with sweat, you would have thought we were carefree socialities. (Not really, but work with me.)

After we paid our check and got ready to go back to real life, the subject of the ladies of Bravo came up – as it does – and before we knew it, we’d been sitting with empty glasses for 15 minutes deciding what we thought about last week’s episode, and the whole Luann and Zhhhhjahhk (how Jacques pronounces his name) set up of Ramona. You remember, right? Wine expert Pepe Le Pew (OMG Mario made a funny!) and the Countess invited everyone to a wine event at which they played “wine games.” Ugh, whatever. Anyhoo, one of the oh-so-hilarrrious games they played was setting Ramona up to see if she knew her own wine. Continue reading

Alex McCord’s Fireside Chats Are Why the Internet is Great

When Alex McCord was a cast member on the “Real Housewives of New York” she was not so much polarizing as she was, well,  just “meh.” In the early seasons, she was too mild-mannered to make good TV. She had neither the hard-charging, fast-talking charm of Bethenney, nor the “hatewatch”- inspiring insanity of Crazy Eyes Ramona. By the time her intro phrase changed to “I’ve always had opinions, but now people know it” it was too late to get interested in her as a Housewife.

Imagine my surprise and delight when I stumbled across the genuinely interesting video series that Alex is doing for a website called RumorFix.com. Each week, she comments on the previous evening’s RHONY episode. They’re not like recaps, and they’re not opinions of who sucks and who doesn’t (that’s for bloggers). Her weekly short videos are instead the commentary of someone who has been featured on this show and knows exactly how it works. It’s almost a look behind the scenes, but from someone who doesn’t have a dog in the fight: she’s not trying to be hired back by Bravo so she doesn’t ass-kiss, but she’s also not out to settle any scores. She comes across as smart and fair and – “Oh, holy Pinot!” – kinda funny.

Alex didn’t make a great TV housewife, which is probably exactly what makes her such an entertaining and engaging commentator. See for yourself!

Note: This episode has annoying and distracting background music, which I hope will be gone by next week.