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The Real Housewives of Atlanta Recap: Fire Escape

The Real Housewives of Atlanta

Texts, Lies & Therapy
Season 11 Episode 11
Editor’s Rating *****

The Real Housewives of Atlanta

Texts, Lies & Therapy
Season 11 Episode 11
Editor’s Rating *****
Photo: Bravo

This is a classic “We need one more episode before the big trip” episode. The only thing that made it even remotely different than every other “We need one more episode before the big trip” episode is that they hadn’t even announced the big trip yet. We can’t even get to the packing montages because Tanya hasn’t slipped on her kimono yet! The hibachi chefs haven’t even made the onion volcano. Because the real problem is Porsha and Kandi just can’t figure it the hell out to get us to our regularly scheduled benchmarks. And this Porsha/Kandi feud is wearing thiiiiiiiiiiin. So let’s get to it.

We pick up in the middle of the fight between Porsha and Kandi at the hibachi party at Tanya’s. The best part is that everyone is just hungry and wants to get to their meal. The overall vibe is “Can we not? And where is my fried rice?” NeNe has to remind Porsha that she’s pregnant so she shouldn’t be trying to get into a fist fight with Kandi. Porsha says, “Fuck Kandi, the Factory, and the high horse she rode in on. No, the donkey.” Okay, Porsha is mixing up two aphorisms here and she’s trying to add insult to insult by saying that Kandi rides a donkey. It’s just not necessary here, Porsha, but I appreciate your linguistic efforts.

ALSO! Did ANYONE notice when Porsha had a slip and said “Kenya” instead of “Kandi”?!?!?!

Anyway, Cynthia is trying to talk Kandi down from her ledge and Kandi’s whole position is “I’m over it. I’m done,” and you know what? I believe her. I think Kandi thinks that Porsha is just a big dummy with a short fuse. Kandi is more than content to watch Porsha get worked up and laugh about it later. And Kandi is not wrong.

But if it ever comes to it and the show needs to get rid of one of them — they should get rid of Kandi. Porsha is giving us way more in terms of laughs and sentimental moments. It’s just like I tell my beginning improv students: “You can’t heighten apathy.”

They all head down to the hibachi room and the TWO hibachi chefs are just lighting things on fire. Everyone is worried that their wigs are going to catch on fire. They keep cutting to Cynthia holding her ponytail away from her head. All that synthetic hair is just going to melt. NeNe tells the chefs to season the food because the ladies are “very Black.” Girl … one of the hibachi chefs is Black. I think you’ll be okay. They all head upstairs to eat, but Shamari decides that she just wants a few bites of fried rice before she heads upstairs — and ends up alone in the basement quietly eating fried rice to avoid the arguing. I relate to Shamari in this moment.

Once they get upstairs, Tanya tries to rectify her shade-throwing since she’s trying to get that peach … I mean … she’ll be spending so much time with NeNe. Porsha points out that Eva is the one who identified the moment as shade, but she can’t identify when she’s being shady herself. Remember Eva? When you called Cynthia “mother”? That’s a very subtle and nuanced distinction between shade and disrespect. I think the difference is shade is done over mimosas and there’s the plausible deniability of the phrase. Like saying “Look at that outfit!” when someone walks in. It could be a compliment, but if you saw her outfit, you’d know it’s shade. It seems like Eva hates being caught in her shade and she can’t just laugh it off, so she doesn’t own up to any of it.

Well, Eva can own up to this bachelorette-party mistake and invites everyone to Tokyo! Porsha says that she’s not excited about going with mean-mugging Godzilla, but I’m very excited for this trip.

The two biggest emotional stories in the rest of the episode are NeNe’s and Porsha’s. NeNe’s is setting the stage for some of her recent social-media venting sessions. NeNe is throwing Gregg a birthday party and she’s hired a chef to make a healthy menu. But Gregg? Oh boy, Gregg. Listen, the man has cancer. He’s entirely allowed whatever feelings he has about that, but YIKES he seems to be taking out his frustrations on anyone around him and expecting them to deal with it. And taking his frustrations out on NeNe means “yelling” or “venting” directly at her. He also demands that the chef make him an alkaline diet. I only know that this is some pseudoscience because the medical-history podcast I listen to did an episode about this yesterday. Your body balances your pH! You don’t need to eat more berries to balance your blood’s pH! He also gets huffy because she’s a chef that does vegan food but isn’t a vegan chef. I get where NeNe is coming from.

Meanwhile, Mike “Doin’ it on the countertops” Hill is still in town, and to avoid her girls revealing secrets about him, Cynthia is having a speed-question session. Imagine combining 7 Minutes in Heaven with Truth or Dare and you’re getting close to what is going on here. Kandi asks only questions about their sex life. She demands to know what is Mike’s go-to move to get Cynthia off in ten minutes or less. If any man claims to have one go-to move to get a woman off, he’s a liar. Eva wants to know what Mike loves the most about Cynthia and he says, “She’s a beautiful person and she resonates beauty on the inside.” Mike. That’s nothing. Just say she’s kind or something. Marlo wants to know his credit score and when his last STI panel was.

I relate to Marlo in this situation.

Kandi is going lingerie shopping with Shamari because she’s launching a new project. Porsha insinuated that Kandi has a sex dungeon where she drugs and rapes people, so she’s is making a variety show called The Dungeon. This maybe isn’t one to reclaim, Kandi. Their adventure ends with the two of them FaceTiming Ronnie to ask if Shamari can wear the outfit she picked out onstage. It’s weird all around.

The last big emotional thread of the episode is Porsha. OH, PORSHA. Porsha is just adrift in a sea of her own pregnancy feelings. She heads to a therapist to sort everything out. She says that she’s been on and off with Dennis for six months and now they’re pregnant and building a life together. Porsha has been with so many shitty and abusive men that the second there’s trouble in a relationship, she’s ready to be submissive and just become who the man wants her to be. WHEW CHILE. THIS WAS A WORD.

I relate to Porsha in this situation.

Porsha explains the whole situation at Todd’s birthday party, but ultimately, this is about the fact that she doesn’t have a strong foundation with Dennis so she’s worried at the first sign of trouble, she’s either going to lash out and destroy the relationship or become so submissive that she ignores any and all red flags. And now … there’s a baby. And now that there’s a baby and Hot Dog King, Porsha could easily forget who she is. Oh, dear Porsha.

Her therapist recommends that maybe she get to know the man she’s having a baby with and they set some clear boundaries about this issue with their exes. Because any insecurities or question marks in an unstable relationship will be enough to knock the whole thing off.

So Porsha sits Dennis down to talk about the issues (after he brings her a pickle), and of course, Dennis doesn’t think that he did anything wrong and that texting an ex is just fine if he didn’t text her first. Oh, dear sweet Porsha. She keeps telling Dennis that she wants him to do what Eva also can’t do: own up to it. You did something that made someone uncomfortable or upset. Just own up to it. Giving a list of excuses about why what you did wasn’t that bad isn’t going to cut it. This definitely seems like the secure foundation a relationship is going to be built on. Better leave the country for a week to really lock in the relationship progress!

The Real Housewives of Atlanta Recap: Fire Escape