The Real Housewives of Atlanta Recap: Cynthia and Peter Fight for Their Marriage

By
Todd Tucker and Kandi Burruss. Photo: Bravo
The Real Housewives of Atlanta
Episode Title
Party in a Sweatbox
Season
8
Episode
3
Editor’s Rating
3/5

All I have to say about last night's episode of The Real Housewives of Atlanta is, "Woof." Well, not all: I mean, I'm getting paid to write these recaps, so if I just turned in a recap with the word, "Woof," I'm pretty sure my editor would steal all my coconut oil. I'm not about that life, especially considering that I'm about to go home for the holidays. I can't show up to my parents' crib looking like someone garnished my dreadlocks with Kraft Parmesan cheese, so I'm writing more words to keep a nourished scalp. But I don't want to, y'all, because "Party in a Sweatbox" was kind of sad because of Peter and Cynthia's disintegrating marriage. I know, I know, isn't this what I said I wanted in the previous recap? Yes. Their break-up is the only way they're going to be happy, but watching things fall apart in real-time is heartbreaking.

Thankfully, there are some moments of levity in the episode: Porsha and Phaedra get colonics, Kenya throws a party for her hair-care line, and there's another appearance from Sheree, who, in my opinion, should be a full-time cast member again. Let's focus on everything that happened in "Sweatbox."

We open with Phaedra treating Porsha to a colonic at Clean Start Colonic Cleansing Spa. Is this really a treat, though? Buying me some Reese's Pieces is a treat; getting me a colonic makes me think you're still mad I ate the last of your grandma's shrimp and grits. So Phaedra gets hooked up and is like, "This is what takes out my boo-boo," and I also call it boo-boo, so maybe Porsha and I do have something in common! Anyway, the doctor turns on what looks like a hose connected to a giant Maytag refrigerator, then leaves. Phaedra stays! Oh, lawd, does Phae-Phae need to be in the room while Porsha is getting the boo-boo sucked out of her? I am not and never will be that good of a friend.

What's even more shocking than Phaedra staying in the room, though, is that Porsha and Duke are still together.

He decides to overlook Porsha's obvious desperation because, as she says, "She has that good good." When you are in your twenties, you treat sex like a liquidation sale at a consignment shop — you just grab any and everything. Then once you get in your thirties, you're like, "Chile, I am tired like a weary Civil Rights marcher and would rather put on zit cream and a mouth guard than deal with the wack person who is attached to the good good." So, Duke doesn't know that he can be more selective, but he'll learn in due time. Moving on. After Porsha reveals this relationship update, Phaedra tells her about the talk she had with Kandi. O ... kay? Is this not precisely what contributed to the riff she had with Kandi? There is no reason for Phaedra to be telling Porsha anything. Not that I think Porsha will blab her mouth, but if the issue has been resolved, there's no reason for it to be rehashed.

Meanwhile, Kandi downloads Todd on the talk, and yet again, Todd harps on the money that's owed him. I totally get it on the one hand, but on the other, he's cool with Apollo and is holding onto his stuff for him at the house. Unless I'm mistaken, didn't Todd, Phaedra, and Apollo all collaborate on the workout DVD together? So I'm not sure why he's mad at Phaedra but okay with Apollo. Maybe I'm missing something, but this seems like selective rage and y'all know how I feel about husbands on RHOA. There can only be one asshole husband on the show and that is Peter.

Speaking of Peter, we learn he hasn't contacted Cynthia in a little more than a week. Forget. Him. Forever. He got caught in the video, caused a scene at Cynthia's sunglasses-line launch party, left town without saying goodbye, and gives her the cold shoulder? Who treats their spouse like that? I mean, she's up here checking email, voicemail, and a dusty-ass Ouija board up in her attic to see if anyone from the grave has heard from Peter. Nada. Damn. Thankfully, he ex-bae/father of their daughter Noelle/actor Leon shows up and I'm like:

Cynthia has more class, so she gives him a glass of juice. I know that she and Leon won't date again, but he's well aware of her marital problems, is very involved in her and Noelle's lives, and is hot. Peter, on the other hand, is a jerk, is always out of town, and looks like he will overcharge you for blinds installation in your home. I would not be surprised if Cynthia turned to Leon, or someone else, for emotional and/or a physical connection. And that someone may be Kermaray, the fine 26-year-old dude Cyn and Leon interview as a potential tutor for Noelle. Apparently, Noelle wants to pursue a singing career, so they're pulling her out of school to focus on that. Kermaray would home-tutor her. Good luck with that, guys!

First of all, he's too hot and young to be tutoring someone's teenage daughter. He looks like he's got game that would especially work on virgins, meaning he has a "Cashing in That V-Card" playlist on Spotify that is just Maxwell's "This Woman's Work" and Sade's entire catalog. Secondly, Cynthia was so openly lusting after him that he can't get the job. The last thing anyone needs is her banging this dude on the washing machine. Anyway, the interview ends and Cyn and Leon talk about her marriage. For some reason, he wants her to stay. Huh? Does he not realize that Peter is hot garbage? I don't get why Leon is #TeamPeter, especially when we learn it has now been ten days and every time Cynthia calls Peter, HE. SENDS. HER. CALLS. DIRECTLY. TO. VOICEMAIL. Someone hold my earrings, my necklace, my Fitbit, and my black-bean burrito from Chipotle because this is downright trifling. And I guaran-damn-tee that if Leon knew this is how the mother of his child was treated, he would not be on #TeamPeter anymore.

We catch up with Porsha. She's participating in a "celebrity track meet." I know she has a radio show and is on Bravo, but she's as much of a celebrity as I am a 34C — which I'm not, no matter how much my bras are padded. Still, it's nice that she does something for a good cause and it's cute of Kandi to show up for moral support. Porsha will need all the support because she is, in fact, not good at running. Not surprising. Also not surprising? She's still confused why people are not about her relationship with Duke. What part of "going all-in on a dude when you've been with him for less than three menstrual cycles is plain old stupid" does she not understand?

Kenya plans the launch of her hair-care line and is looking at a venue with Marlo. Just when I was about to hate on Marlo for being shoved in our faces again, she makes sense and tells Kenya that neither her nor Sheree have any etiquette and that's why that fight happened at Cynthia's. Y'all, if Marlo is explaining how you're jacking up your life, then you really are messing up. Back to the party. Kenya wants this thing to be the epitome of luxury since she has been working on her line for two years, so you know what that means: Every housewife will show up, including Kim, who, up until now, has pretty much been on the periphery.

We catch up with Kim, who is hanging out with her husband while picking out an outfit for the party. She ordered a bunch of clothes and, guys, it's not great. I feel like she always selects fabrics and patterns that Tim Gunn would tell Project Runway contestants not to purchase at Mood. She's so cute, so why is she always dressing in shapeless muumuus? You know why? Because Chris, her bae says:

Only a spouse can get away with that honesty. Kim, understandably, doesn't get much credit for raising her kids and working all the time, but as a result, she doesn't have any gal pals. She's like Olivia Pope, minus the popcorn and wine addictions. Chris recognizes that Kim deserves more than that, so hopefully, she'll make friends with the other Housewives?

It's time for Kenya's big party. Brandon oversees everything while Kenya worries about getting too many orders and not being able to fulfill them. LOL. That will never be a problem, but okay. Anyway, as she gets ready, Porsha and her friend Shamwow Shamea arrive and throw tons of shade. First, they complain about how hot it is because the A/C isn't working, which is a valid complaint. Then they decide to "test" products from the hair line. Sashimi Shamea basically says the products are nothing but water in a bottle. Then she takes a swig of it to drive the point home (and ensure that she'll be on camera). I see you, Chambray.

Kandi arrives, asks for water, and is told there is none. WHAT? I'm sorry but if you don't have water, a Beyoncé playlist, and Sabra hummus, I'm not coming to your party. That is ridiculous. Kandi leaves, not only because she's parched, but also because she's feeling nauseous. The rest of the girls show up, including Kenya's enemies Phaedra and Sheree. Finally, Kenya arrives, then heads out two minutes later because it's hot. Meanwhile, Kim is trying to make friends. That's when Phaedra is like, "My husband is in prison," and Cynthia goes, "We can double date, but not this week because I'm mad at my husband":

That is awkward, but at least Kim knows that she has the best relationship on the show. #SilverLiningsPlaybook

Kenya eventually gets over how bad the party is and comes back to make a wack speech. Then she actually heads over to Sheree and acts politely. Sheree isn't sure she can trust Kenya because Kenya still wears colored contacts in 2015. (BWAHAHA.) However, Sheree agrees to go somewhere private so they can squash the beef. Kenya thanks her for coming to the party, then brings up the house stuff and how the neighbors were concerned. Please. Why is Kenya so obsessed? I understand why she's shady for cameras, but Kenya's house isn't finished either! They're both sleeping in sleeping bags. Who the eff cares. Anyway, the two bury the drama, which thank goodness, because this house mess is not juicy enough to last a whole season.

Cynthia arrives home and finds Peter there, which is awkward. It's the first time they've seen each other since the sunglasses party. He says that he had to leave the party because it was too much for him. He claims he showed up drunk because he was nervous about seeing her friends after the video came out. I don't get it. He was nervous about seeing her friends after the video came out, but was clearly chill about seeing Cynthia? He came home to Cyn after that video came out, strolling through the house like he was window shopping at JCPenney's. Makes no sense.

He continues trying to explain his behavior. He was prepared for Malorie to confront him, but couldn't handle it when Kenya did. When he saw Cyn walk down the spiral staircase, it was too much for him to handle. The last time he saw her descend down a spiral staircase, it was on their wedding day. It made him emotional. Fair enough. He and Kenya get into the nuts and bolts of their relationship. He says all they do is work and never spend any time together because she doesn't make time for him. LOL. Did she not uproot her and her daughter's lives to come to Atlanta, just so she could marry him? Furthermore, did she not foot the bills of his business ventures early in their relationship? Wasn't she also trying to work with him so they could spend time together? Isn't he the one who decided to open a bar in Charlotte, which meant that he would be gone every week to make sure it's operating well? So, shouldn't he shut up and not place all the blame on her shoulders? Jesus.

Anyway, things get real because he asks her when she stopped loving him. She says she doesn't know. Oof. He says he never stopped loving her — but he's terrible at showing that and she had no idea he felt that way. She says that if something doesn't change, they should part ways. He basically says he doesn't believe in divorce. He wants to keep fighting, and for some reason, Cynthia agrees to give the relationship one more shot. If they make it to the reunion, I will be thoroughly shocked.

Alrighty, what did you think of this episode? Are you shocked that Cynthia and Peter are giving their marriage one more chance?