The Real Housewives of New York City
Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat: The shark room at Blue Stone Manor, Dorinda’s Berkshires house, is the best room in the whole damn house. There are plenty of places where you can stay in a room that is tastefully decorated like Morocco or a pink feathery escape. But where else in the world could you possibly sleep in an all-green-and-blue room with a bunch of life-sized stuffed fish lunging at you from the walls that Ramona Singer once destroyed by ripping a sconce off of? Only at Dorinda’s! I don’t know why none of these girls want to stay in the shark room. If I came to visit, I would request the shark room every damn time.
The fight at dinner at the Wheatleigh Hotel is absolutely ludicrous, starting when Dorinda leaves the table and Luann says she didn’t want to be in the fish room and Ramona and Sonja Tremont Morgan of the Captain Morgan Morgans start cackling uncontrollably over something that wasn’t even that funny. The two of them sound like a room containing a million parakeets. What even is that noise?
Luann gets pissed off because she doesn’t want to wake up to sharks and because it reminds her of the massive hangover she had the year before when she woke up in that room in the Berkshires. Trust me, the Countess has woken up bleary in the morning staring at all sorts of unsavory creatures, the sharks are the least of her worries. The tack that Luann takes is really not cute though. She says that she drove all the way from her upstate house and “after everything we’ve been through” Dorinda should give her the nicer room.
The problem seems to be that Bethenny isn’t arriving until the next day so one of the “nicer” rooms will be empty for the night. Oh, get over it, Luann. Isn’t Bethenny supposed to be on your side these days, and now you’re calling her “queen Bethenny” like she’s somehow forcing Dorinda to give her this room? It’s stupid. And if it’s not one thing it’s another for Luann and the best room. Remember when they went skiing and she said she should get the best room because she was getting married? She just wants a nice room like Ariana Grande wants a ponytail longer than 15 Pete Davidson dicks. I get it. We all want to get nice rooms. But sometimes you just gotta take the shark room and get over it.
There is something about fighting over rooms that just puts my boxers in the freezer. I think it’s a sign that the editors have nothing to work with. If there were more craziness or lots of other drama at least we could dismiss these silly squabbles and get onto something real. But, alas, there is nothing.
How much time do we have to dedicate to Tinsley and her stupid relationship with Scott, the Koupon King? I sort of feel like everyone should leave Tinsley alone about her relationship, especially her mother, Dale. I’m with the rest of you guys, I love Dale, but I could see how being her daughter could be exhausting. When Tinsley is on stage about to do her doggie fashion show, her assistant comes up to her and says, “Your mother wants me to tell you that you need to put on lip gloss.” That, right there, is like a little cough drop from the reality-show gods being lodged directly into our scratchy throats. That moment was brought to you by Luden’s.
While it was amazing to watch, can you imagine living with that mother? Imagine being under the thrall of someone who wants to control every aspect of your life so much. If Dale was my mother I’d probably have to get crazy jaw Botox just to relieve the stress too. It’s no wonder that Tinsley thinks she needs the love of a good man to complete her when she’s been raised by Dale to believe that is her only worth. I will watch Dale all day, but I do not fault Tinsley for keeping her mom and her boyfriend separate.
At lunch with all the women after the fashion show, Tinsley is defending staying with Scott while everyone is riding her about her decisions, and I wish they would just stop. Let Tinsley do whatever she wants to do. It’s her life. She’s a grown woman. Let her make mistakes and cry into her expensive purses until all of the Birkins are ruined and waterlogged. But — and, as Sonja would say, this is a very big butt — if Tinsley really does want to have her own biological children she needs to put a bun right in that oven because, well, the gas company is about to shut off the supply to that oven in about six months and it will never bake bread again. There is a biological sense of urgency that Tinsley is well aware of but also seems unwilling to bother Scott about.
The best thing about that lunch, however, is my favorite floozy Sonja. Not only is she wearing the best dress she owns — a jewel-toned sequin cocktail dress in a bold, graphic print — but she gets one of the best Sonja-isms into the conversation. When Bethenny asks Tinsley if Scott is definitely going to marry her, Tinsley replies, “Do you ever really know if someone is definitely going to marry you?” Sonja immediately responds. “Of course! They tell you on the first date.” This is why I love Sonja. Of course she has first dates all the time where guys say they want to marry her. Sonja also probably thinks that those guys are suitable mates, because she is Sonja and I love her and I never want her to stop saying ridiculous things with a sincerity usually reserved for priests and college students who just learned about Foucault.
Elsewhere in the episode, Bethenny has a meeting with Norman, a grief counselor who looks suspiciously like a disgraced bond trader. I get on Bethenny’s case a lot, but she is really a master of this genre. So few people are willing to be as emotionally raw on television as Bethenny, and that is why she will forever be a gift. She tells the grief counselor dark things: that she wanted to break up with her recently dead boyfriend/best friend/confidant Dennis but couldn’t figure out how, that she feels guilty for dating even though she thinks she needs to, that she didn’t have an identity at his funeral and that upset her, that she decided to leave Dennis right before he died. She cries real tears and is clearly feeling real distress.
Then she hugs the grief counselor and he leaves and she will never see him again. This was her one therapy session, she let the world share in her pain, and now she can compartmentalize it somewhere deep down inside and continue on with the business of turning her life into entertainment for the masses. Give this woman a Peabody and erect an ugly statue of her in her hometown.
I also loved when she says to Tinsley at lunch that Tinsley is always putting herself down, that she doesn’t think that she’s smart, dresses well, or looks good without makeup. (We’ve seen the mug shot. We know she’s a little bit right.) Bethenny tells Tinsley to love herself and to really consider her relationship with Scott. “You might be settling for less than you deserve,” she says, which I think is honestly true. Yeah, I talk a lot of shit about Bethenny, but she really is incredibly quick and insightful.
That’s why it’s a little bit mean when Ramona says of one of Dorinda’s ghoulish statues at Blue Stone Manor that it looks just like Bethenny crying because, honestly, she is totally right. I didn’t even need to see the flashback of Bethenny in the same pose crying just a couple of years ago, because I could see the anguish and the blank, bulge-eyed stare coming right at me.
After everyone finished dinner and fighting about who would or would not be in the fish room, they all came home and walked past the ghastly tableau that Dorinda had set up for Halloween on her porch. She stopped for a minute on the front walk and thought Hm. Is there one more statue there than when we left? Dorinda blamed it on the wine and the fight. Having all of these spooky sculptures around was really getting to her.
As soon as all of the women entered the house, one of the creatures, a blonde in an expensive-looking outfit with her long, blow-dried hair hanging onto her face and one prosthetic limb raised in the air as if she were about to throw it across the room at Cipriani’s, let out a sigh and strapped her leg back on. Aviva Drescher was almost caught right there on the porch. Not this time. She wasn’t going out like that. If she was going to do someone else’s dirty work she wasn’t going to let some cartoonish horrors take her down before she could shuffle off into the night, scented with the smell of wood fires, rotting leaves, and the tangy scent of intrigue.