The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
Do you feel that in the air? The warm breeze of spring? Things are changing, winding down, starting anew. Last night marked the official end of this season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and the ultimate destination of my recapping journey this go-around. Let’s explore this final chapter together.
First things first: Brandi had the balls to say what everybody knows but would never, ever, ever say out loud in the same room as the Richards sisters. She accused Kyle of secretly wanting her sister to relapse. That was straight-up shocking. Even Taylor’s forced gasp didn’t seem disproportionate. I was ready for a record scratch into a soap-opera sting. It was some fierce movie villain bitch stuff, and Brandi didn’t even break a sweat in the process. I mean, holy moly. That was some cold shit! Get a poison apple and strike a Maleficent pose, you untouchable, fabulous C-word.
That was by far the moment of the night, but let’s start where last week trailed off: with a Yolanda-oriented showdown that ultimately proved fruitless. Why? Well, because Andy Cohen, et al, decided not to illustrate Kyle and Kim’s accusation of Yolanda shit-talking Lisa with a clip from the series. Yo walked out of that confrontation smelling like a rose, which is more than we can say about Kim’s airport pillow. Yikes! That was a gratuitous revelation, yes/yes? Who knew that Yolanda toted the burden of Kim’s fecal duvet en route to Paris? I certainly did not, but now that I know, I suddenly have, like, 1 billion questions about that, yet no fervent curiosity that fuels their inevitable resolution. Like, is it an attachment object or a sleep aid? Was the shit on the pillow derived from a human or an animal? Was it in the shape of Jesus Christ crying? What kind of pillow was it — one of those U-shaped things you get at the airport or a feathery thing? And what kind of shit-smeared pillow is too heavy for a grown person — however frail — to carry herself? Please, please. Don’t answer a single one of these questions. I truly do not want to know. BUT STILL I WONDER, from the dark places in me.
After Yo resolved her conflict with Kim by being as cold as ice dressed up in fire red (Revlon, are you listening?), we got an obligatory Adrienne/Paul clip package, and everybody talked about how, in the absence of the Mallooves, it was sad and weird that they were no longer together. Only Brandi was like, “Uh, they clearly hated each other and never fucked.” And the Paul/abuse rumors, via Chef Bernie, were addressed, but nothing snowballed into what it could have become had Adrienne grown the grapes to show her Kandinsky-like face at the reunion. Everybody seemed to agree that the claim that Paul had abused their children came from Adrienne and was made out of horsefeathers, and Taylor made a point about how Adrienne didn’t believe her when Russell allegedly blackened her eye, so she can seriously go fuck right off.
Then came the meat of the matter — Kim’s inconsistencies, odd behaviors, and how Kyle and every other thinking/observing human being had concluded at least once throughout the season that Kim was back on the silly sauce. As reasonable as that concern was, NOTHING could be more offensive to Kim than the notion that she may have relapsed, except for the notion that she could perhaps be out to lunch on occasion, or might not remember every last detail of something that transpired in real life, or that any of those suspicions might spawn from the brunette brain of her diabolical sister. She got up in Yolanda’s face with “Kim logic,” which has to do with her having realized that Yo also makes excuses for coming off a little differently than she intended to. Kim said to Yolanda, and this is exact because I rewound this seven fucking times to get this quote correct:
“I do remember everything this year. Every time there’s been something that’s gone on in this last year that we’ve watched you that nobody’s liked or said something about, you’ve had an excuse for. It’s your accent, it’s you’re Dutch, or your disease.”
PS, while we’re on the truth train — Kim and Kyle totally do not like each other. You can love somebody and not like them, Kyle, you dum-dum.
After this came pillow shit-stain-gate, and after Brandi defended Yolanda when Kim was riding her, Kim was horrified that Brandi would ever have the audacity to butt into a conversation/confrontation taking place on couches at the reunion of a reality show. In effect, Kim posited, Brandi was acting like a “mean, naughty little girl.” When Kim is really mad at Brandi, she talks to her like a john talking to a prostitute when he’s getting excited.
Kim’s pain led into a chorus of “sorry’s” from the denial choir — all of the ladies caved into Kim’s co-dependency-fueled, immaturity-grounded defensiveness and said “we’re so sorry we accused you of acting bizarrely in Paris just because you were acting bizarrely in Paris, and because there is a precedent of this and a reason directly tied to it.” And that begat Brandi’s “Kyle secretly wants her sister to fail” comment, which angered Kyle so much, her eye shadow almost cracked — a beat before her voice, I might add. And Kim was also hurt by Brandi’s comment, but didn’t muster the gusto to direct all of her fire toward Brandi for long. Soon Lisa and Kyle swapped couch positions, in time for Kim to shift her laser from Brandi to Kyle. “How dare you accuse me of not being sober!” Kim said to her sister, and Kyle was like, “Okay, I’m sorry, you’re right.”
There were a few watered-down apologies splashed half-heartedly among the girls around that time, and then we vroom’ed into a fluffy montage that showed off how much disposable income these lizard people actually have to burn. Ha-ha! Even with clear refrigerators, you can’t cheat death. I will say, however, R.I.P. to Yolanda’s sense of humor. Is this indicative of the Dutch in general? Do they not glean sarcasm? That “only one horse” question from Andy merely birthed defense and stoic posturing. Oh, Yo. If you could laugh at yourself, I’d give you the season. Well, that’s not true, but I still like you. Here’s my recap money — get yourself some prettier extensions. Just kidding. Give it back, I need it for rent.
Out came the husbands during the next bit. Mauricio gave us the sweet relief of knowing that his new real-estate agency is going “so, so well” and did his best to grunt caveman sounds as a loose approximation of a man with the capacity for language and abstract thought. Good boy, Maurice. You get an extra bison bone!
Paul Nassif made a good showing in what read as a death reel from the Oscars. I like Paul, and I will miss him on this show. I hope he one day falls in love with a woman who is not an H.R. Pufenstuf character with a soul made out of poisonous gas, and maybe even one who is less than 40 years younger than him.
The next course was Mauricio versus Brandi, and Brandi told Maurice that it was not his place to run his mouth at her after she was served with scary legal papers from Adrienne. Mauricio sort of defended himself and sort of apologized, like the spineless salesman he is, and the matter of whether he cozies up to people depending on whether he can sell their homes was readdressed. Giggy yawned at one point, Ken looked serious, and then it was time for the wrap-em-ups.
Kim talked about how it meant everything to her to get through this season sober, and, I assume, “remembering everything that happened in the last year.” Like she had Marilu Henner disease or something? Come on, Kim. The sooner you embrace your fallibility, the more likely you are to EVER recover from your disease. Also, if somebody makes a GIF of Kim shaking her head in disbelief after Brandi accused Kyle of rooting for her demise, is that like our equivalent of the grotesque animation of that poor basketball player’s leg breaking in action? Here’s to never finding out.
So, who won the season? I can tell you right now that Adrienne lost — and she made it official when she forfeited by not showing up at the reunion.
Was Brandi the winner? Even with her flawless Stevie Wonder impression and fearless Reality Show chops, I cannot say she did. There were times she fucked up, and she’d be the first to cop to it. That text to Marisa was wack, and I still can’t believe she said last night what only a Vulture recapper should say — and right to Kyle’s face! Don’t get me wrong — I’m impressed, but I can’t crown her now. She still has a lot to learn and bigger shoes to grow into. She will. I’m not saying she’s perfect — she is. But she’s not our blue-ribbon girl, yet.
How did Taylor do this season? Not great! Even with those extra ten or so pounds on her skeleton, she still blew in the wind like a feather extension, pausing for wine and nodding whenever anyone called her out as acting inappropriately. It seems like, post-Russell, she’s looking for a new master. She’ll apologize to anyone who takes her reins. Also, there was — however sneakily edited — that whole “where exactly is my daughter?” thing. So, she’s ineligible for winning. Good luck, Taylor. If you’re not on the show next season, rest in knowing that you never have to buy Kennedy a gift again — that’s the best one of all.
Kyle and Kim cannot win, because this season, they were themselves, with a consistency that rivals their lack of loyalty, regard for others, and, well, consistency. It reminds me of Samuel L. Jackson’s line about Bridget Fonda’s character, Melanie, from Jackie Brown. After Melanie has sex with his best friend behind his back, he laughs at how predictable her weakness of character truly is. “You can’t trust Melanie,” he says, “But you can always trust Melanie to be Melanie.” Kyle and Kim are Melanie. They are a latent, juvenile disaster area, and I pity anyone who thinks he or she is close to them. These women are only out for themselves — one’s just better at hiding it. Good luck with your kids, ladies! Don’t worry — nobody’s ever been damaged by a narcissistic mother.
Yolanda, while she does not win, still had a great debut. Her husband makes my blood turn to a platelet Slurpee, but she stood up for her friends and stuck to her values consistently. I would love to see a “Godzilla versus Mothra” showdown between her and Faye Resnick, but I don’t want to even evoke the MCFR in recap form once more, because I’m terrified that, like Beetlejuice, she will appear in person after one recites a certain number of incantations.
Which brings us to Lisa. Here’s why Lisa Vanderpump won the season.
Loyalty: She never wavered in her devotion to Brandi.
Class: When she’s pissed at you, she’ll show up to your thing, but no way is she going to pretend you’re chummy. There are manners, and there is bullshit. This lady knows the difference.
Hair: Lisa has, by far, the best hair on this show. Sorry, Kyle — your Pantene curtains have nothing on the voluminous matte magic two inches north of Lisa’s painted eyebrows.
Fun: Lisa is fun. She will stay up with you and make or enjoy dirty jokes and laugh. She will drink with you. She will make self-deprecating jokes, but she won’t hold back from the action (see: their trip to Vegas for Brandi’s stripper lessons). Lisa participates, but she doesn’t lose who she is in the process.
Balls: Lisa will call you out on your shit. She did not back down from confronting any of her comrades throughout the season, however unpopular her whistleblowing or side-taking may have been to the cowards in the middle (Kyle and Mauricio, Camille!).
Humor: Lisa is funny. Checkmate, bitch!
Generally winning: Come on. She’s the Bethenny of Beverly Hills. She’s got a series that Bravo is actually promoting with muscle, she’s on a network reality competition show, and her Q rating is off the charts. More people know the name of her dog than the capital of their own state. That’s not necessarily a good thing, but I’m not here to judge America. I’m here to celebrate its most glamorous import.
I raise a flute of rosé to Lisa Vanderpump. Congratulations on your win of season three.
And, to you, fair recap-readers, I say: thank you. Thank you for weighing in on this show every week in the comments below with your hilarious and brilliant insights. Thank you for the kind words about my writing and in regards to my hair and weight, after my video appearances. Thank you for being there for each other as a community in a way these chicken-birds could learn from. And thank you for just generally being fabulous and smart and fervently invested in what a lot of people actually think is a silly or stupid TV show … ? How foolish and sad their lives must otherwise be.
I will be back to recap The Real Housewives of New York City, as soon as we learn exactly what the hell that show will be next season (I’ve heard revamp rumors!), and you can keep in touch with me via my Vulture videos and on my podcast, “How Was Your Week,” which you can stream directly here and subscribe to on iTunes here. My twitter handle is @julieklausner, and I sincerely hope you’ll keep in touch, as I love you.
Until then, my friends. Now onward, spring!
Yours in pollen count,
D.J. Soft Batch.