The Real Housewives of Orange County Recap: Heart On

The Real Housewives of Orange County

Seeing Red
Season 13 Episode 8
Editor's Rating *****
Photo: Bravo

After tonight’s episode, I have a very important question that some of you might find controversial: Why the hell does Tamra Barney Judge have a giant sign in her kitchen that says, “KITCHEN.” It’s on a faux-distressed piece of wood with white lettering that is supposed to look like it was done by someone who once raised a barn. Where in the name of Chip and Joanna Gaines did she purchase such an awful thing? Does Tamra not know what room she’s in very often? I know that Eddie is suffering from heart problems, but he’s not suffering from dementia. He’s not going to get lost in his own house.

It’s also hanging over one of the doors in the kitchen. Might someone who was actually lost go through that door thinking it would lead to the kitchen? I think they would, and then they’d be wandering around the Pottery Barn showroom that Tamra calls a house wondering why there aren’t any burners or ovens in this particularly messed-up kitchen.

While we’re registering my awe about things that happened in this episode, what about that picture of Victoria Denise Gunvalson Jr. and her two children that flashed on the screen for way too short an instant? First of all, Vicki is practically unrecognizable. I’m sure she’s had a face-lift and a nose job and enough Botox to kill the world’s last remaining black rhino, but did she have her entire head transplanted?

I shouldn’t be too cruel because it is an old, somewhat blurry picture and it only flashed for a second. But why were she and her children wearing matching sombreros and graphic T-shirts? I couldn’t tell exactly what the logo on the shirts was for but I did see that it contained the word “Loco.” Um, did Vicki take Michael and Briana, ages four and three, to whoop it up? Did the three of them go to Puerto Vallarta, where she took them to Andales to order off the kids’ menu? I bet she did. I bet that is the kind of single mom Vicki was.

Gina is having a much more difficult time of it considering that she pushed three of the Wicked Witch of the West’s flying monkeys out of her vagina. Those are not children; they are animals. However, aren’t most children animals? Yes, yes that is true. Gina does a great job with them at a messy dinner, mostly trying to make sure their needs are met but ignoring them just enough that she can have some nice time with her friend Miss Vicki. Then one of them pushes Gina in the head and she chucks him off to her room like [insert sports metaphor here I guess?]. That’s some damn fine parenting.

Later, at Eddie’s birthday party, Gina confesses to Emily that she is having problems with Matt. Well, there’s one problem, really, and it’s that he’s not around. Now she’s realizing she’s kind of fine with him not being there. Then she freaks out about that and she doesn’t know what to do. It does feel like Gina and Matt are living in a state of proto-divorce, but that might be because we know that they’re already broken up.

Speaking of Eddie’s birthday party, Tamra decides to make it a “red” theme and to get Eddie a suit covered in hearts because of all the trouble he’s been having with his heart. Um, this seems like a very bad idea. This is like having a baby-themed party for someone who is infertile or throwing a shindig at Hooters for Tiger Woods. They don’t want to be reminded of the thing that is giving them so much trouble.

Anyway, Eddie is the only good man that any of these women have. He is a nice, genuine, loving, attractive man. But now we need to talk about his former headshots. Man, are they bad. I guess they were from the early ‘90s (if Eddie is 44 he graduated from high school in 1992) but they look like they were from the ‘70s because of Eddie’s Leif Garrett–meets–Blair-from-Facts of Life haircut. In the photos he sort of looks like Hervé Villechaize, the actor who played Tattoo on Fantasy Island, if Villechaize was actually a Hulk.

Since we have discussed the one good man on the show, now we must talk about all of the bad ones. First there is Vicki’s boyf Steve Lodge. I think that the scientific word for someone like Steve is a “dingus.” That’s not me calling him that. That is science. I do feel a little bit bad for Steve, with Vicki and Tamra hounding him at the country club about getting married, but his Stonewall Jackson routine when someone confronts him with something he doesn’t want to talk about isn’t a really good coping strategy.

Just look at what happened when Kelly came over to talk to him at Eddie’s party. First of all, Shannon had to coach Kelly about how to talk to someone at a party like a human being. I love when Kelly and Shannon are together because they’re such a good complement to each other. Kelly gets Shannon to unclench and not take herself so seriously and Shannon gets Kelly to behave like something resembling a person with social skills. I could also spend an hour watching them try boba tea for the first time or trying to light a propane lamp. They’re the Snooki and JWoww of the Real Housewives.

Anyway, Kelly goes up to Steve and says something along the lines of, “Hey, why were you saying mean things about me in Page Six?” She was very calm and respectful about it and I think that she deserves an answer. Steve just starts giving her the side-eye right away and is totally dismissive both in content and tone. He won’t answer her questions. She was being respectful and, while Kelly does have a bad track record, I think that Steve should try to have an honest conversation with her. He does not. He just walks away.

It seems like Steve doesn’t want to be on the show, but does it because he loves Vicki. He also knows just what the show entails and how much he’s willing to give to it. The same cannot be said for Emily’s husband Ring Toe. First of all, when Gina finally meets him at the party after he kicked her out of the house on Poker Night, she freaks out a little bit about meeting him and he treats her kind of coldly. I mean, Gina’s just trying to have some fun out of a tense situation. Maybe he should go along with it?

When Kelly comes up to talk to Steve, Ring Toe, who was only briefly introduced to Kelly just moments ago, tries to defend Steve. I am totally with Kelly on this one (oh Lord help me, am I starting to actually like Kelly?) and Ring Toe should have just kept his trap shut in a discussion that he had no place in. When Kelly confronts him he says, “You’re drunk.” Kelly counters that it is her first drink to which he says, “This is just your normal behavior. UGH!” He makes a sound and a face that looks like a starfish dropped into a pail full of bleach and I have never hated a human man more than I hated him in that instant. The way that he hates women and holds his Mormon sobriety over people is just appalling.

My Kel-Kel then goes and destroys any credibility she had in this argument by saying to Emily, “Who is that dork over there?” and, well, it’s her husband Ring Toe. Ooopsie. He comes over and she starts calling him a “little bitch” and other names and he says to Emily, “This is someone you want to hang out with?” Um, yes Ring Toe it is. That is the job. This is what you signed up for. If you didn’t want people like this in your life, you shouldn’t have started cashing Bravo’s checks and putting your family on national television. If you only want to talk to subservient sober women, maybe he should have put his wife on the Real Temperance Society of Salt Lake City instead.

I do love that Emily really defended her man though. So often these women won’t jump to defend their guys but she got her pointer finger out and stabbed it right in Kelly’s face telling her that she can’t say things like that about her husband. “I will kill you!” she shouted at Kelly. Wow, that is the most interesting thing that I think Emily has ever done in her life. Did this season just get good? No, I don’t think so, but it became something close.