There is something absolutely gorgeous, majestic, and statuesque that we haven’t seen all season that made its very well-time return to the Hamptons this week. Well, yes, I guess Andrea qualifies, but I’m really talking about the huge stack of Amazon boxes next to the front door when everyone arrived Friday. Where has it been? Have they been leaving their packages in a safe space?
But speaking of Andrea, he makes a guest appearance too. I sort of love this role for him. He shows up for one weekend when there’s extra room in the house, he knows most of the people, but he’s not super-keyed-into the drama. He’s just there to be hot and funny and give us a bit of relief from looking at the same people every week. This is also close to my lived experience of having a summer house. There is always some tangential friend who makes a stop by every summer, some who has been gone just long enough that everyone screams and shouts for him when he arrives — and screams and shouts even louder when he gives us a glimpse of his package in royal-blue briefs — and then disappears into the night only to rear his non-ugly head again next summer.
Where was this Andrea last summer, talking about how he likes a woman to masturbate on his face and squirt like she’s a Pokémon made of a million rolled lemons? That really threw me for a loop. Also thrown for a loop during their sex conversation is Sam, who goes into excruciating detail about a small vibrator that can be controlled with a remote control. Did Kandi Burruss put her up to this? Did she see this on RHOA and decide it’s her favorite sex toy?
Maybe it’s just that Sam talks a lot. Like a lot a lot. Like she talks more than Bethenny Frankel TikToks, more than Snoop Dogg smokes pot, or more than George Santos lies. I cringed from afar when Mya decides she is going to say something to Sam after her outburst at dinner and a car ride where she jabbered like it was powering the vehicle. It goes, um, about as well as can be expected. “I want to say this in the sweetest way possible,” Mya says. “You speak too much. I’m not trying to tell you to be quiet; I’m not coming for you. You have the greatest heart.”
Sam immediately starts crying and says she knows it’s a problem, and it’s probably nice it comes out like this rather than Lindsay getting drunk seven weeks into the summer and just shouting, “Do you ever fucking shut up?” across a crowded party. But Sam says no one has ever asked for more of her because she already gives so much. Awww. As a talker (and a loud talker at that), I feel for Sam. I especially feel for her because she kicked boxing coach Josh to the curb. Who came by and picked him up like he was a coffee table that was full of bed bugs? Oh, just Madonna. You probably haven’t heard of her anyway.
That’s all the fun stuff we have to dispense with, so, deep sigh, I guess it’s time to get into the Kyle-Carl-Paige-Lindsay square dance where they do-si-do-ed their partners round, picked Lindsay up, and threw her on the ground. Yeeeee-haw! It starts with Carl coming by the Loverboy offices, which just happen to be a fart smell away from Kyle and Amanda’s apartment. He and Kyle talk out their differences using only the words circle back, ideation, placeholder, and buckets as if their brains have been hijacked by some start-up. They decide that they’re going to change Carl’s title and try to make him happy. It all seems nice enough.
With Kyle and Carl all fixed, Kymanda are both mad at Lindsay now, and Lindsay is mad at them. Kyle even has a late-night bitch sesh (minus Casey and Danielle) with Danielle in which they talk about how they don’t know how to relate to Kyle and Lindsay anymore now that they have lost their respective best friends to this relationship. But this is not a Carl and Lindsay problem; this is a Kyle and Danielle problem. I get it: It’s hard when dynamics change, especially when a platonic one suddenly becomes romantic, but that doesn’t mean they should penalize the couple for their awkwardness. Yes, Carl and Lindsay can ease their friends into it, but they’re happy, so the onus to get over it is really on their friends.
That is the sticking point with Kyle and Amanda. Lindsay is pissed that Amanda said (if not on this show, then on Winter House) that Lindsay has “tainted” Carl. Kyle keeps saying Lindsay is in his ear and is manipulating them. Okay, let’s get something straight: Yes, Lindsay is in Carl’s ear, but that is true of every relationship. You could say Amanda is in Kyle’s ear and vice versa. My husband is certainly in my ear because I trust his opinion the most, spend most of my time with him, and want to make him happy. (Also he lets me bang on about Kyle McGill Cooke an excessive amount and never tells me to stop, which means he should be granted sainthood immediately.) I think that is healthy, and if Kyle doesn’t like that Lindsay is now going to have influence over Carl, he needs to hang it right up.
This all comes to a head when the cast decides to have a slumber party in the living room. Excuse me. Paige really missed the wrong week not to hang with the rest of the bedsore sisters. I mean, they turn the living room into a giant bed and don’t get out of it all night. That’s like every single Friday and Saturday night since Paige joined the cast. Now they’re just tacking “party” onto the end of it and pretending they’re doing their job.
Danielle brings a game called “Stir the Pot,” and anyone who has ever watched even a second of Housewives knows that stirring the pot will lead to someone getting their hair pulled and possibly Andy Cohen getting manhandled at a reunion. Why she thought this wouldn’t end in tears and recriminations is so far beyond me that it is currently circling the Orchis Forge directly on the sun. (Sorry, it’s an X-Men thing.)
There are a few bright and breezy questions about who would be the horniest (Andrea) or the worst to break up with (Lindsay “How Many Sandwiches” Hubbard). Then Danielle gets the question that ends it all: “Who do you trust the least?” Danielle’s response is “In a curveball, ‘I can’t-see what’s coming’ way, I trust Amanda the least.” As soon as her name leaves Danielle’s mouth, the curse of an evil witch is fulfilled, and Amanda’s tears and rage blotches start immediately.
Kyle asks Danielle to unpack it, which is something we really need. What is a “curveball kind of way”? Danielle explains that sometimes Amanda is a friend to Lindsay and sometimes a friend to Danielle or someone else, and she’s not sure where Amanda is going to side. Amanda, hearing the ringing of the witch in her brain, gets up and leaves the room, passive-aggressively talking about everyone at full volume as she takes herself upstairs. Kyle is naturally upset about this because he doesn’t want to see his wife crying. (If that’s the case, Kyle, why did you behave the way you did for the past six seasons of this show?) He says he’s going to go downstairs and tear into them.
It’s about the right time because Lindsay is talking about how much Amanda hates her. She says, “Everything I do, according to Amanda, is my fault.” Um, yeah. That’s how actions and repercussions work. Should Amanda think that everything Lindsay does is someone else’s fault? I have no idea what she’s talking about right here. But what really hurts Amanda is that she feels as if the attack were personal and is spurred on by whatever is going on with Kymanda and Cindsay (or Larl?).
Because he’s drunk and overreacting, Kyle handles this entirely wrong. He goes back downstairs to the bed that is so large it would make Paige cream all over Andrea’s face. Kyle tells the group but directs at Carl, “I love you, man, but be careful what you’re dealing with here.” He says Lindsay is “a master manipulator. My wife deserves better.” Okay, now here is the real question. We all know that every person in a couple has their partner’s voice in their ear, but when is that voice too much? Is it ever too much? If Carl allows Lindsay to manipulate him and doesn’t mind it, is it even a problem? And if Lindsay is misbehaving, should Carl also be held responsible for it? Is this just a way for Kyle to show that he’s dissatisfied with how his friend is acting without being mad at his friend? Is all of this anger at Lindsay misdirected? Does Carl not have agency of his own? These are all questions we’ll have to answer next week when the fight continues — and, hopefully, Andrea gives us a glimpse of his briefs once again.