The Real Housewives of New Jersey
Do you feel a chill in the air? Have the clouds above you darkened? Did a nearby flock of birds suddenly take flight? It’s the day of the Posche fashion show, and the Lizard Queen is at the height of her unearthly powers. As the models get ready, Kim D. (the D is short for Deargodwhy) doubles down on accusing Teresa of infidelity, a charge Siggy and Dolores continue to vociferously deny on her behalf. Kim’s hairdresser friend Lina says she saw Teresa canoodling with a non-Joe man in public just last week. It is a blessing that everyone makes it out of this conversation without taking a hair curler to the eyeball.
Meanwhile, Teresa, Melissa, Danielle, and Margaret primp for a high-glam confrontation. Danielle reminds us that it was at a long-ago Posche fashion show that Ashlee Holmes yanked out her hair extensions. This event is basically the Purge. Teresa — who, by the way, is still on probation — leads her squad into the basement, the show’s de facto backstage. It’s probably for the best that the actual rumble is anticlimactic, like the Jets and the Sharks if they universally forgot their choreography. Teresa yells at Kim D. for talking shit about her marriage, Kim D. chastises for Teresa for clubbing, Teresa threatens to grab her by her hair. (Ashlee’s spirit lives on.) T does deliver one memorably excellent line, though, when she announces that Posche stands for “Piece Of Shit, Coke whore, Homewrecker Everyday.” Acrostics are a really underutilized insult format across the Real Housewives franchise.
In the face of all this sturm und drang, Siggy and Dolores still intend to walk in the show, a choice that soon has Dolores and Melissa getting in each other’s faces. This is not the worst fight I have ever had with someone I’m about to get on an airplane with — there’s something about traffic on the Van Wyck that transforms me into a carsick, raging she-Hulk — but still, Milan ought to be interesting.
Joe Prime, still very much grieving his mom, has procured the services of a medium, Concetta, who soothes everyone’s nervous Catholic streak when she tells them she’s Italian. “I’m a simple girl who’s heard dead folks all my life,” says Concetta, and if this isn’t a backdoor pilot for a Bravo show of her very own, then somebody has made a grave mistake. After turning down a drink (“I never mix alcohol with dead people,” she explains, and you know what, same), Concetta tells Joe, Teresa, and Melissa that the late Antonia is right beside them. She’s at peace, and she’s even playing music for Joe. It’s Connie Francis’s “Mama,” the song they danced to at his wedding. She also encourages them to tell their dad, who desperately misses his wife, to take his time and trust they’ll be reunited one day. I didn’t expect a supposed psychic paying a visit to the Giudice-Gorga family would make for such a sobering and emotional scene, but here we are. It’s probably for the best that the Allison DuBoises of this world be kept as far away as possible from people in mourning.
Siggy heads to Giudice Manor to apologize to Teresa. She agrees that Kim D. was wildly out of line. So why’d she still walk in the show, then? As Siggy explains it, she didn’t want to disappoint the families of the victims that the charity event was intended to benefit. Teresa accepts that … kind of. Siggy makes it clear that she still wants very much to go to Italy, but that she won’t go without Dolores. By the way, for those of you playing along at home, Siggy is once again in a fight with Margaret, who’s back on her bad side for referencing Hitler in their group argument over Kim D. I fully endorse the point Margaret was making — that you should judge others by how they treat everyone, not just you — but as a general rule, you should probably not rhetorically invoke Hitler, especially when talking to the daughter of a Holocaust survivor.
After we are forced to endure some conspicuous product placement for a blow-out house-call app called Priv (now, give me $100, Priv), Marge Sr. is off for a date with Steve, the company accountant! Naturally, Marge Jr. and Joe Omega have come along as chaperones. I feel like I haven’t talked enough about how much I enjoy Margaret’s mother, so allow me to do that here: I love Margaret’s mother. After Marge Sr. describes her plans to get a new tattoo that will only be visible when she’s naked, Margaret asks Steve about his five-year plan: “To be alive.” I may not be a family member, but Steve has my personal blessing to marry Marge Sr.