The Real Housewives of Dallas
If the World Cup can have instant replay, why can’t the International Bravo League of Substance Abuse and Miscellaneous Frippery? That would save us so much time on semantic non-fights precipitated solely by somebody mishearing what somebody else said. Exhibit A: The hooked up vs. hung out James-Kristen kerfuffle on the last season of Vanderpump Rules. Exhibit B: The plotline that opens this episode of The Real Housewives of Dallas.
Kameron continues to believe that Stephanie said she was bashing Brandi’s adopted child, when in fact Stephanie said she was bashing Brandi for adopting a child, and oh my God, I can feel my brain cells atrophying with every keystroke it takes to type this sentence. In an interview, Cary, who is rocking a metallic raccoon eyeshadow look that I am professionally compelled to mention here, astutely likens the argument du jour to Kameron’s unending obsession with the gift Brandi neglected to bring her last season.
On a silent and uncomfortable van ride to some mountain somewhere, Brandi tells Kam she felt “targeted” by her the night before; Kam admits she felt left out of Brandi’s baby secret. They all make up, including Stephanie and Kameron, just in time to snowmobile. Good. Kameron’s pink itinerary waits for no one.
“It actually feels really good on the vagina,” Brandi observes of her high-powered metal steed. If not Kameron, maybe the snowmobile can be her number two. The gang pauses to enjoy the beautiful view at 12,000 feet. Maybe it’s their majestic surroundings, maybe it’s the beginnings of altitude sickness, but D’Andra is inspired to try to make amends with Brandi yet again. So far, their failed attempts at reconciliation have made me think of watching my Roomba trying to plug itself back into its dock but instead ramming, repeatedly, into a nearby chair. But this time, D’Andra not only apologizes for maybe, possibly, allegedly accusing Brandi of abusing Adderall on a podcast (keep up!), but also reveals that she herself has ADHD. Finally, both women are ready for a fresh start.
They commemorate their newfound mutual respect by making snow angels and then, at the lodge, by taking half-Fireball, half-tequila shots. (As far as I know: No, that is not a thing.) Kam has preordered all the gals uncharacteristically indulgent lunches of burgers and fries. I’ll let Mrs. Science herself educate you: “I love being at high altitude because you can eat a whole bunch of food and your body just keeps burning the calories and you don’t gain weight.” There is no way that this is true, and if it is, I’m moving.
Back at the very luxurious Westcott murder house, the raucous good vibes continue. Brandi pushes D’Andra into a chair for what I am tempted to call a lap dance, but actually just involves Brandi removing D’Andra’s shoes and pushing one of her feet into her own left boob.
The next morning, we learn that LeeAnne and D’Andra had a 3 a.m. argument about who was the “queen” of their friend group. (And yet there is no footage of this—the RHONY crew kept rolling for a while in the face of death on that boat in Colombia, but our friends behind the cameras on RHOD can’t be bothered to stay up till Brandi nods off into her Fire-buila?) In a Nobel Peace Prize-worthy diplomatic gesture, Brandi invites Kameron to help her prank D’Andra and LeeAnne by forcing them to compete in an impromptu pageant to decide once and for all who the queen really is.
The pink itinerary is capable of mercy after all, granting its prisoners a one-day furlough to do what they like. Brandi and D’Andra continue to bond by shopping together in Vail, somehow dropping thousands and thousands of dollars at a Western-themed boutique that serves them shot after shot, as well as glasses of champagne, and is no doubt a front for some Western-themed organized crime.
To LeeAnne and D’Andra’s surprise, dinner proves to be Brandi’s version of the opening ceremonies for the who’s-the-queen pageant. LeeAnne — a pageant veteran with the photo in an amazing high-cut one-piece and Miss Arizona USA sash to prove it — is unfazed. (Also, just putting this out there into the universe: There is nothing I wouldn’t give for a pan-franchise, Housewives-wide beauty pageant.)
First up is the interview. “Can you tell me something you like to do with your hands?” Brandi asks LeeAnne. Though that question has a very obvious answer, LeeAnne tries a different tack: “My hands were made by God to do good and I can pray with them.” This is just the beginning of a monologue that also includes the line “I truly believe I could hold hands with a veteran and a homeless person,” but I’m sorry, we’re out of time, we have to move on to our next contestant. Brandi asks, essentially, if D’Andra — posing endearingly insanely and strutting across the room with a microphone-fork — would call out a friend for farting. “I don’t like to make anyone uncomfortable, even if they’re gaseous,” D’Andra says, with a curtsy.
Brandi invites the two hopefuls for the crown to ask each other a question, too. D’Andra takes this opportunity to go in hard on LeeAnne about why she and Rich aren’t married yet, a topic D’Andra approaches with the furious intensity you’d expect if she was the future spouse with whom LeeAnne was inexplicably refusing to set a date. LeeAnne gingerly explains that it’s been “very difficult” dealing with her fiancé’s loss of vision in one eye, hence the wedding planning delay. She’s worried about pushing him too hard and damaging the relationship. Everyone else at the table strikes an objectively appropriate, supportive tone, but D’Andra is just getting started.
“You need to get it together, bitch, right now, because you’ve been together for nine years,” she rages at LeeAnne. “He loves you and you love him. If that’s not it you need to tell us what it is.” I trust that D’Andra means well, but I have no idea why extremely tough love is the tactic she’s chosen to deal with a pal who is obviously Going Through Something.
LeeAnne begins to cry, with the tears detaching her false lashes; Nurse Cary swoops in to the rescue with an emergency tube of glue. “I would like everyone to note my abilities as well as the caring person that I am,” announces Cary, who remains a leading contender for RHOD Most Improved Player.
In the morning, the women move on to the talent portion of pageant. (Like Miss America, we have evolved past the need for a swimsuit competition.) D’Andra tells the camera that she excels in “butt darts,” in which a competitor holds a quarter in their butt and expertly drops it into a glass. Okay, fair enough, but that does not explain why she inserts a K-Cup between her asscheeks and does a little shimmy dance, with no quarter, or currency of any kind, in sight. Nevertheless, I enjoyed myself.
LeeAnne presents a rap in the school of “Top That” that, I am sorry to tell you, I believe she prepared in advance:
Girl, what’s my name? That’s right: Leeanne
I don’t need no man, but damn, I met Rich
Got my ring, bam!
D’Andra is crowned the winner, if only because she did not do, well, that.