The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
From first blush, we knew that this episode would shed some new dark light on Yolanda. The “Last week on the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” clip package began with the Dutch Stepford Wife working way too hard on an exercise mat so that her husband was happy sexually, and last night we learned that Yolanda takes that “pleasing your lizard husband by staying in your place” thing so seriously, she doesn’t just apply it to herself. “It’s how things should be,” Yolanda told an audience of 2 million career women and gay men laughing at her, and she was actually referring to her routine of making David Foster his “favorite chicken” before athletically fucking him, then getting back on the figurative and literal treadmill of pre-civil-rights self-improvement … for the benefit of somebody who is not one’s self. In the words of Nasim Pedrad’s Arianna Huffington, “Yolanda — could you be serious?”
But let’s back up a tad. Before Yolanda hilariously condemned “other” women in Beverly Hills who get face-lifts and don’t age gracefully, Television’s Suzanne Somers dropped into the Foster Estate to take vitamins in front of people and proclaim she planned to live until she was 110. A vibrant, EXTREMELY SEXUAL 110. I believe I mentioned this last week, but it bears repeating so you know it’s true — Suzanne Somers, in her quest to have the vagina of a 30-year-old and live forever, squirts a needleless syringe of estrogen directly into her, well, “Crissy Snow” once a day. This is a real thing. I’d give you a hyperlink and fact-check it, but it’s way too early to type that shit into my search engine. I’m sorry. Just trust me on this one.
So, Suzanne Somers sat around and picked at Yolanda’s exotic chicken salad while Kyle’s eyes twinkled with the magical intoxication that only exists in her when she’s around people more famous than she is. And Lisa, the voice of reason, spoke for all of us when she said that if she lived that long AND had to fuck people, she’d want to die.
Speaking of wanting to die in the face of inappropriate sexuality, Brandi visited with a woman in head-to-toe Lululemon to learn how to move around on a stripper pole so she could pay her bills.
While Brandi stretched her cat body and shook her bits and pieces around, this dreadful woman, in an apparent effort to prove loudly that White People Are the Worst, shouted bizarre, Oprah-ish exclamations like “WHAAAT?” “HELLO!!!” and “MERRY CHRISTMAS!” It was both terrible and stupid.
Then Kyle’s daughter Sofia graduated the sixth grade, which is not really a thing, but it was excuse enough to have a party at the Kyle/Mauricio residence, and of course the Malooves came by because (1) Brandi wasn’t there and (2) if they don’t spend a certain amount of time onscreen, I have a feeling they’re in breach of contract as main cast members. I’m putting that in litigious terms so they can follow along as well!
So Adrienne and Paul showed up to serve themselves from those stupid Sterno things that are in Kyle’s kitchen whenever she hosts a dumb event, and soon they were all sitting around a table with “Auntie Faye” Resnick (blecch). And soon the conversation turned to that dinner party at Kyle’s, during which poor Brandi left in tears because Faye bullied her and Kyle sanctioned her friend’s behavior with silence. Kyle is such a two-faced coward, and this episode really showed off that particularly reprehensible quality of hers. In a sweaty, desperate effort to be liked by everyone, Kyle ends up being the least likable person in this cast if only because you can’t trust any of her fleeting, ersatz loyalties. If she’s on Adrienne’s side, why is she being chummy with Brandi in Vegas, however passive-aggressively (“You can’t say ‘Cheese’ when your photo is being taken; it has to be ‘penis’”)? And all of the quasi-neutral lip service she paid at Sofia’s graduation toward Faye’s ability to “speak her mind” and “have strong opinions” was such a lousy substitute for having the stones to say “I AM ON HER SIDE.” Adrienne and Paul thanked Faye for confronting Brandi while Kyle smiled and nodded, secretly agreeing but terrified that if she took a stand she might one day grow a backbone — and alienate more people than she already has. Oof. This woman and her actress-y neediness.
Then we checked in with Kim at her house of peeling, fading memories. As Kim ogled framed photographs of her daughters, a patient immigrant named Milton smiled and nodded and kept her away from sharp objects and flammable liquids. And in her testimonial, we learned that not only was Kim retreading memories in this clip, she was also shopping for new facial features in the visages of her young loved ones. Because at the time, Kim revealed, she was thinking about getting some plastic surgery to update her “outsides” so they corresponded to her “insides.” You know, because her insides have been changing so much with her recovery and sobriety? Anyhoo, she deserves a new nose. Or at first she thought she deserved a new brow lift, but once she remembered how Kyle had talked shit about her nose one time, Kim figured, “Why not? I’ll start there — it’s not like I have any allegiance to the integrity of my physical self. Just take a hot knife to the part of me with eyes and hair.”
Then came a series of scenes in which the ladies packed bags. I’m not crazy about these “packing packages,” if only because the joke is usually that they pack a lot of shit, but also because I’d just as soon get to the limo and the airport? But during this part of the show, we did get to meet Marisa Zanuck’s cute mother who hates her daughter’s taste, and a friend of Brandi’s who was more than happy to come over and help her put cover-ups into suitcases because, and I quote, “You know me, I love clothes!” Let’s call this woman Sheryl. I don’t feel like looking up her name.
In the limo, Kyle made that “penis”/“cheese” remark (ew, penis cheese!), and soon the ladies arrived at the Four Seasons in Vegas, a hotel that is much nicer than the Palms.
Meanwhile, back in California, Yolanda almost dampened her white capri jeans with a whisper of perspiration while she worked to get her creepy husband’s dinner on the table before he came home from mixing the boards to Il Divo Presents: The Ultimate Felching Session! or something.
This was the part of the show where Yolanda was either taking cues from producers prodding her to be less likable and more smug, or she was just genuinely committed to presenting a version of herself that is so socially backward, it seems parodic. Must I become the reality genre’s Quentin Tarantino and make YOLANDA UNCHAINED? Or is Yolanda the Samuel L. Jackson character in that metaphorical adaptation? Either way, for a woman who’s spent as much effort isolating herself from the group under the auspice of superiority as she has convincing the world how desperately she and David “I Hit Ben Vereen With My Car One Time” Foster love each other, maybe going down the antiquated gender-roles road is perhaps not the best stride into the graces of viewers. But maybe she’s just really like that! Maybe Yolanda really believes that men should be king of their castles! She is a former model, after all. You think they teach you values beyond “Men love beautiful women and women love rich men” at Barbizon? (I assume all models attend Barbizon.)
Either way, all of Yolanda and David’s “true love” talk will be all the more satisfying when he leaves her for Charlotte Church. And just like in the case of Heidi and Seal, it will be “heartbreaking.” I know it sounds ghoulish, but I can’t wait.
Back in Las Vegas, the ladies sat down to an epically long dinner sponsored by Charlie Palmer’s Steak House, a restaurant that does not serve rosé. And as Brandi tried to choose a different libation for the table, Kyle “joked,” “We’re not picking a house!” then laughed so people wouldn’t see her seething hostility. Plot seeds were sown around the opening of Kyle’s new shop, about which Camille said “I’m excited!” so falsely, I wanted her IMDb credits as “actress” revoked. Except for the topless roles; bitch should be proud of those.
Then, a moment that had been teased as juicy — Brandi telling Marisa Zanuck that her husband seemed to love her way more than she loved him — ended up unraveling as a blip in a more or less jolly series of agreeable interactions. “Oh, that’s just what we do,” Marisa said. “I appreciate him.” “Well, you better!” Brandi insisted, and then she talked a bit about how much she “loves love,” and there was some chat about the softer side of Brandi. Honestly, I’ll take all sides of Brandi. She’s just great in all manifestations — I hope she ignores all of Kyle’s “Maybe if you showed us your gentle side, we’d be gentler to you!” advice. I just hope she ignores Kyle.
Invariably, after the second liquid course was served, the girls’ conversation went into the Eddie Cibrian zone. The ladies discussed the concept of losing one’s “sexy,” the inverse theme of Brandi’s Night School, and Camille spoke candidly about how she and Kelsey stopped doing it before he left her for a stewardess. Don’t worry, she added — she’s getting bonked big time now!
After Camille and Brandi shared their pain (BTW, where was Taylor? She usually joins into these chats to remind the other women that she had it the WORST), Kyle chimed in to offer a morsel that I’m sure she thought was sympathetic but remains the most despicable self-aggrandizing humble-brag I’ve seen on the show so far. She said to Brandi about her divorce, and I quote: “I’m so in love with my husband and my family and the life we created, so if that happened to me, I don’t think I could go on.” My jaw just dropped when she said that. What a fuckin’ asshole.
Because this dinner scene went on forever, other topics were discussed, such as whether Leann Rimes has gone all Single White Female on Brandi’s hoochie style since hooking up with Eddie, and what kind of darnedest things children say when encountering their mothers’ bare genitals with tampon strings sticking out of them. Also, Lisa said that “Peachy” was a name for vagina, and I resolve to use that term in conversation this week. I set manageable goals for myself!
Then it was time for Kim’s nose-job consultation with a man named Dr. Gregarian (like the chants, but gregarious). This doctor had the charisma of an ottoman, and I wouldn’t let him near me with a knife if I had a Thanksgiving turkey I desperately needed to be carved. That said, this scene wasn’t about Dr. Gregarian. It was about Kim’s nutty sound bites and how she cracked herself up with her gravelly repetition of her own silly words, the way toddlers love that “Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round” song. She talked about putting a “change with a change! A change with a change!” and then, in what I’m sure will be the pull-out quote from the show repeated with gusto in gay bars across the nation, talked about how, in terms of homonyms, it was extremely funny that, when it came to Dr Gregarian, she claimed, “I KNOW he KNOWS about NOSES. I KNOW he KNOWS about NOSES!” Then she choked on her own alternating laughter and loneliness.
Finally, Yolanda arrived in Vegas to meet the girls by the pool the day after their dinner and order a spinach juice to sip in superiority while the rest of the Housewives guzzled day-glo cocktails. And to compliment that scene of abject judgment, Brandi practiced her spiel for her “Night School for Girls” gig in front of the other Housewives, and spoke — with some nerves — about how her stripping class would “not be about judging,” but, rather, about celebrating other women. Personally, I like to celebrate other women by listening to a nice TED talk from one or saluting Hillary’s composure during her Benghazi testimony, but that’s mostly just because I hate fun. I’m just joking, of course. To the pole with me!
Next week, we’ll finally get to see the Housewives drop their stuff like it is hot! Yolanda will, in perhaps her most smug gesture of above-it-all-ness so far, actually SHUSH a table full of women! And Camille comes out swinging against Lisa? Until then, my feathery friends.