Yes, I am giving this reunion special one star. You know what? I'm giving this whole season one star. This was by far the worst season of Real Coochie Cutters of the Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles on Pico. It started in dull fits and starts, only enlivened by a trip to the mini-pony factory, and it ended not with the women taking shots, as every other season has (even when Kim Richards was in recovery), but with them paying each other compliments. Double-You Tee Eff, Andy Em Eff Cohen? If we wanted to sit around and watch women pay each other compliments, we'd watch the livestream of a dorm meeting at Smith. No, we watch to see a bunch of rich ladies do ridiculous things, call each other out on ridiculous things, and fall off camels.
There was no need for this reunion to be split into three parts, especially because we just ended up rehashing all of the "who said what about Yolanda's Munchausen" bullshit all over again. To make it even worse, we got a taped visit from Brandi Glanville (say her name three times and she appears) where she went around and picked on every woman in the room by making fun of their hair and saying how awful they are.
Yolanda pointed out that if Kim gets to come on the reunion even though she wasn't a part of the season, then Brandi should also be allowed to join. She's not wrong. At least Kim is there in person, so she could be criticized and made to answer for her actions in the past and what she's said in the present. Brandi is brought in to merely snipe and instigate, a role she happily and eye-rollingly plays. I'm glad that all of the women (especially Lisa Vanderpump) dismiss her whole thing with a shrug, not taking the bait of the provocation.
The reunion is supposed to be an extension of the season, so let's take a look at what we learned in these final 60 minutes of torture.
Lisa Vanderpump manipulates. We can all just assume this to be true. Brandi accuses her of it and so does Lisar, both independent of each other. No matter whose side you're on about whether Lisa told Lisar to bring Kyle into the Munchausen conversation — I am on the side of hoping that I will hear the words "a special immigration task force headed up by First Lady Melania Trump" before I ever hear about this occurrence again — it proves that everyone knows Lisa is massaging things to make a good show. Kyle knows it, but she's afraid to say it out loud because she is holding tight to her relationship with Lisa for a million very good reasons. So, yes, Lisa is making sure they all make the best show possible. I don't think this is a negative, but it does seem to be true and the fact that she won't be more transparent about it is tarnishing her image.
While we're talking about Lisa, the best part of the whole reunion is how everyone tells her that she has a hard time apologizing, and then, at the end of the hour, Andy asks her point-blank if she'd like to apologize for anything, and she just says, "No." Ha! Q.E.D., Lisa. This was her only miscalculation all season.
I am so sick of "Owning It." I would rather huff poppers out of Kevin Lee's jockstrap than hear Lisar tell Lisa to "own it" one more time. I'm so sick of these Housewives thinking that any sort of behavior can be dismissed if people would own it. That said, I do wish that Lisa would be a bit more transparent about how she encourages the other women to create drama, but she knows that getting herself dirty isn't going to sit well with fans.
Lisa also knows one of the tenets of Real Housewives–dom is that you can't fight about anything that happened off-camera. Lisar thought she had this smoking gun to take down Lisa, but because we didn't see it, her revelation is more like a vaping gun. How the viewers feel is totally based on whom they believe more — and most will believe their beloved Lisa Vanderpump. Trying to argue about the magazines she supposedly was told to bring on vacation is what toppled Brandi. Lisar should have known better.
Lisa Rinna is desperate. Lisar is also trying to make good television and I don't blame her. She is a hustler and wants to succeed, and that is why she is so easily manipulated by Lisa. But if she is going to play that game, she needs to follow through and not have a change of heart when she doesn't end up looking like the giggly diaper saleswoman who can do no wrong. She is the one who came off looking bad in all of this, as erratic and inauthentic, and that's a shame. If she weren't trying to play the game, she would have scored a victory.
Erika reigns supreme. She may not be perfect, but Erika is the best new Housewife in a very long time. I love how she faced off against Kathryn and totally annihilated her, then ended by saying that they were on the road to a real friendship. She can win a battle and win the war without using too many dirty tricks to get there. And she can get away with saying "cunt-y" and no one minds anymore.
There is a Ken problem. I know many of the loyal contributors to the Real Housewives Institute appreciate Ken's devotion to Lisa and how he always has her back. I agree with you — that is one of his best qualities. However, one of his worst is trash-talking her detractors. Thinking that Lisar or Yolanda is stupid for criticizing Lisa is one thing, but calling them "wankers" and "stupid bitches" is just unacceptable. It's also unacceptable for Lisa to hide behind her pit bull and let him speak about them that way. Lisa admits as much, too: If Harry Hamlin called her the same names Ken calls Lisar, then she would be pissed.
If Ken hates these women so much, why is he the husband who gets the most camera time? If he thinks the whole thing is deplorable and all of these women are awful, why doesn't he appear as rarely as Erika's husband, Tom? Even Mauricio was almost entirely absent from this season. (What was up with that? Is the Agency doing that well?) I don't think Ken hates women, but reflexively calling women names and shouting them down is more than a little unsavory.
Eileen got a raw deal. I know that many have soured on her, but I love Eileen Davidson. She is real and rough around the edges and doesn't mind looking ridiculous in a denim jumpsuit. The most astute point she makes in this reunion is that she got made into a bitch by continuously demanding an apology from Lisa when that was never her intention. Eileen says that she wanted to stand up for the way she felt and get Lisa to acknowledge her — and when she couldn't get that, she got more and more upset. I agree that the blame mostly falls on Lisa. If she had just made a sincere apology (or even an insincere apology), Eileen would have been satisfied and would have gone back to looking at faux-Victorian sconce shades with Vinny.
Alright, that's what I learned. It wasn't much and it wasn't valuable. Now I have to look to the person to my right and pay a compliment. I guess that means that I'm looking at all of you. I'm thinking that you are the best, prettiest, smartest Housewives fans in all the world, and you have such luxurious eyelashes that you don't need Latisse. Unless you like Kathryn. Then, you're a virgin who can't drive.