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The Real Housewives of New Jersey Recap: Marital Grape

My mom and I are in the Superfresh checkout line. We see a tabloid featuring Teresa Giudice on the cover.

ME
Hey, that's the show I recap.

MY MOM
What is that? She looks simian.

On that note, we're still not in Sonoma.

If you were wondering whether this show could possibly get any more abhorrent, Tre asks Joe Giudice if she can bribe him to smile for a photo with some ass play. This is how she looks when she says it. He does not seem amused. Immediately, we recap Jacqueline and Teresa's fight and recon conversation. Remember that time they had that fight? Melissa is trying to talk sense into Tre about how magazine covers Actually Affect Us All, and it isn't working. Tre maintains her innocence, and says that she and Jacqueline are in a better place now. Melissa then says that now that it's settled, Tre can just have fun and doesn't have to "think so hard." Was that ever a problem?

Meanwhile, in the other RV, Lauren points out that Tre is just a bitter, awful cronehag, which Jacqueline still refuses to acknowledge for some reason (ratings), and finally Chris Laurita points out that there's literally no reason to continue talking about this. Thank you, Chris.

"I WANNA DO YOU IN ONE'A THESE VINEYARDS. WANT ME TO TAKE VIDEOS?" Tre perches on Joe Giudice's lap like the saddest-ever bird of prey. Urhghghghg. More on that later.

Finally, we are in Sonoma. It's lovely, and everyone poops with joy. The crew is staying at a place called "The Lancaster Estate," and Chris Laurita reiterates that he will not stand for any B.S. during this business trip. Wait — what if Chris Laurita actually doesn't know that he's on a reality show? And he was actually adopted by a TV studio at birth? And when he begins to piece it together, Ed Harris's bald dome appears to inform him that he must take a Death Ship to the end of the studio lot in order to find the beautiful extra from high school? Chris Laurita, you poor bastard.

Chris Laurita implores everyone not to get too fucked up as they drink wine out of Solo cups on the way to a wine tasting. Once they get there, a kind person shows them around the red wine fermentation tanks. It is abundantly clear that every member of the cast wants to swim in it, à la Scrooge McDuck. I'm 90 percent sure that cheap cabernet is actually what runs through everyone's veins on this show. During the informative tour — SURPRISE! — people seem bored and agitated. Someone, I think Joe Gorga, says "this tastes like my wife" about a wine. Later, he tries to convince Melissa to snatch a grape off of a bunch with her teeth. I can't. Cannot.

We also learn that Jacqueline and Tre once stomped grapes, like in I Love Lucy. Shortly after this, we learn that Albert wants to go to KFC for dinner, which leads to a fight with Juicy Joe about whether a KFC in Patterson had been replaced with a car wash and what the fuck is happening?

At some point on the Sonoma tour, probably more than once, Tre refers to her vagina as her "thing" and Joe Gorga jumps on a huge cast-iron dick in a cave, and then is like, "Wait, NVM, it's a lion!"

For her 50th birthday, Caroline Manzo gets a blindfold slapped on her and they take her to an admittedly beautiful outdoor picnic overlooking the vineyard. THESE PEOPLE DO NOT DESERVE THIS. Albie gives a sweet, albeit somewhat B.S.-y toast for his mom: "I think, speaking for the three of us, you're the best friend we ever had."  Before Lauren can speak (no doubt to rebut Albie's claim), fucking Joe Giudice, of course, jumps in before her until he's shushed. Finally, the prodigal daughter speaks, and despite all the shit Caroline's put her through, she can't get to the end without crying. Then Joe Giudice says something passably nice about Caroline and Tre cries. She says it's because of Caroline's ex-friendship, but maybe it's because Juicy Joe has never expressed that kind of affection and respect for her. But what's my dimestore psychology worth? NOTHING. SO.

And now, the episode's crucial moment: Joe Giudice gets on the phone with someone we are predisposed to assume is a Mystery Whore. ("What are you doing right now? … Ah, don't even tell me that. Oh, here she comes. Here comes my bitch wife.") As Tre wanders over and asks who it was, Joe says it was a worker and tries to cover it up.

At which point things get really, really dark. (BLK, even.) Tre decides that the best recourse for your husband prrrrrobably being unfaithful is to try to bully him into fucking you in public up against some grapes. After putting up a valiant fight, being completely repulsed by her and all, Juicy Joe finally acquiesces: "Hurry up, let's get it over with." God. This is sinking me into a deep, existential depression about men and women. YOLO! So they fuck and return to the table and everyone looks at the moon.

The next morning, their final day in Wine Country: "This trip has been a great bonding experience for Joe and I," says Tre as Joe reaches over to face-palm her away from him in bed. Jacqueline and Kathy do Tre and Caroline's hair, respectively, and we learn that Kathy is threatened by Tre and Melissa's friendship because she's actually Tre's "blood relative." 

The Alberts 1.0 and 2.0 have a heart-to-heart about how proud Big Albert is that Little Albie is working and hasn't hit and killed someone in a drunk driving accident yet. OK, I added that last part myself, but it's implied. Tre makes a toast and forgets to include Kathy — gay roommate Greg seen furiously stirring the pot on that one, did anyone else notice? — and that appears to be the focal point of all of next week's episode. Christ on a cracker. Send help! WHAT IS THAT?!

NEWSFLASH: If Professional Cheerleader was left in charge of Greg's dog Deloris Van Cartier, it's dead. RIP.

Photo: Bravo