Well, well, well. We’ve got ourselves a battle of dueling events: Are you Not For Lazy Moms and going to Monique’s podcast show, or would you rather drink some Wine with Wendy? The ladies are forced to ask themselves this very important question and make a difficult decision even though they could have very easily attended both events, but refuse to because, you know, optics.
But before we see which event the majority of the Housewives decide to attend (hint: it’s not Monique’s), we touch down with Gizelle Bryant perusing jewelry wearing a furry blue vest that she must have purchased from the Snuffleupagus For Nordstrom Rack collection. Gizelle is not looking for a ring for herself but rather graciously deciding to help one of the hottest house husbands of all time, Juan Dixon, re-propose to his ex-wife Robyn. Gizelle, dressed as Bird Girl #3 from Seussical the Musical, picks out a $59,000 dollar ring full well knowing that Juan and Robyn owe almost $100,000 to the IRS because she’s petty like that, and Juan Dixon very demurely says that’s a bit out of his price range. He then settles on a sensible $8,000 ring made of (gasp) morganite with diamonds on the band. The whole thing is very reminiscent of that scene in Sex and The City where Aidan gets Carrie a pear-shaped ring and it’s terrible and Miranda has to cop to helping him pick out the terrible ring.
While Miranda and Aidan try to get a ring for Carrie, Monique is getting ready for her podcast show, Not For Lazy Moms, which I only just realized stands for “NFL” Moms because I’m dumb. Chris Samuels is still not ready to be seen with Monique on camera for long periods of time, so he sends his godfather, Perle (sp? idk he never got a chyron), in his stead to help Monique make the most elaborate gift bags I’ve ever seen for a podcast show in my entire life. I would never shame anyone for how they conduct their live podcast show (having a podcast is shameful enough as it is) but this all seems a bit… what’s the word… excessive?
Monique very much can’t see the forest for the trees as she freaks out about low ticket sales for her podcast show instead of the fact that all of the relationships in her life (including her marriage) seem to be crumbling around her, but still I feel bad when she calls all the ladies and each of them declines her invitation to her event, except Ashley Darby. She makes a good point: If all the ladies say they want to see that she’s changed, but then refuse to show up for her/ever talk to her again, then how will they know that she’s changed? It’s very “If a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, did it fall” vibes. Okay, clearly it’s autumn and I’m obsessed with trees right now (I’ve also been listening to a lot of folklore), but the metaphors still stand. It’s time that someone other than Ashley and Karen extends some grace to Monique, or at the very least acknowledges her presence. Also, Monique should take that $200,000 she’s spending on this woefully misbegotten podcast and use it for some lawyers’ fees because it looks like Candiace is coming for her with a vengeance.
I’d like to give a Bremmy (a Bravo Emmy, an award I just made up) for Best Therapy Scenes to the Potomac franchise because they really keep delivering. This week we see Ole Weary Bones Ray and La Grande Dame discuss their marital woes with a life coach, who looks amazing in purple and knows it. Last week, I seemed to upset a few people in the comments when I suggested that being in your mid-70s meant that you were old. I’d like to take a moment to clarify what I meant: I think that if you are in your mid-70’s you qualify as “old.” It’s not a value judgment. It’s just what I think. Great, glad we got that settled and now we can focus on the honest-to-God progress Karen and Ray made in this pseudo-therapy session. I absolutely got chills when Ray described the old Karen as a “housewife.” It was just like that thing where you go to see a play and then a character says the name of the play in the play. A stunning moment. The therapy session makes it clear that Karen is clearly a words-of-affirmation person whereas Ray is an acts-of-service person, so I do think the small act of Ray verbally apologizing to Karen for under-appreciating her was a huge step forward for them. I don’t know, maybe I’m naive, but I think these two crazy kids might just make it!
We then get to see Wendy invite all the women to her “Wine with Wendy” event, which goes a lot better for her than Monique because Wendy is not currently being sued by another Housewife for second-degree assault. While I love to see Housewives kids on screen, I did need Wendy to usher little Kameron and Kruz to another room while she was on the phone with the adults, as the background noise was distracting. A true rookie mistake on her part. Also, Wendy’s decision not to invite Monique, though fair, doesn’t sit right with me. Wendy talks a big game about “empowering all women,” but has seemingly written Monique off forever for making a mistake? It’s not adding up for me.
Also not adding up for me: Gizelle and Super Pastor/Super Cheater Jamal Bryant’s relationship. For better or worse Gizelle wants to be with Jamal, and after she expressed that to him in the car on the way to the airport all she got was was a fist bump? That ain’t right. Their “defining the relationship” conversation in the car saw Jamal spew out one of the craziest gaslighting sentences I’ve ever heard: “Your progression of thought is a new entity that you have not introduced until 90 seconds ago.” I’m sorry, but what type of self-righteous gobbledygook is that? The only way I will even consider signing off on this relationship continuing is if Cynthia Bailey moves to Los Angeles with Mike Hill (#CHILL) and joins the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Gizelle moves to Atlanta with Jamal and joins the cast of Real Housewives of Atlanta and immediately starts beefing with Kenya Moore. Think about it. It could be amazing.
Finally, we get to the hottest show in Potomac: Not For Lazy Moms Podcast Release Show. Look, I’ve been to many a poorly attended show in my day. Like, “Four people who were promised free drinks if they watch the comedy show and then decide to leave after the first comic bombs,” poorly attended. I feel for Monique. But you know what? The show must go on. And the show does go on with very specific guidelines from Monique to her guests about what can and cannot be discussed during the show (read: no Candiace). However, this message does not get back to the audience, who know all the tea about the incident and want ANSWERS honey. Her answer? “Pray for us.” It’s funny but also deeply sad.
Also funny and deeply sad is the fact that the only Housewife who shows up to support Monique is, of course, Ashley Darby, who ends up giving a clearer and more heartfelt explanation and apology for what Monique did in that barn than Monique ever has. Monique should take notes. She also tells Monique that Karen said that she would consider taking legal action against Monique if she were in Candiace’s position. While it seems sort of silly to turn against one of the only people who has stood by you after you tried to rip a girl’s scalp clear off her head, Monique was extremely upset and betrayed to hear that Karen did not have her back 1000 percent. Sigh, being La Grande Dame of Switzerland is not easy.
After a night out at the bowling alley with Robyn, Juan Dixon, the boys, and Robyn’s parents who were made aware of Robyn’s financial troubles (*Narrator voice* they already been new) and were asked to give their daughter’s hand in marriage to the same person for a second time (Juan Dixon’s request is met with a shrug from her father followed by the words “I think it’s cool”), we arrive at “Wine with Wendy.” The event is light on the wine and heavy on the Wendy, for me. Again, everything Wendy does feels less about community building and women empowerment and more about Dr. Wendy building a brand and empowering herself. Criticism aside, it was great to see a room full of Black women talk about politics and the future of our nation and the importance of voting in this upcoming election. Pretty sure that’s not happening on RHOC. Also, points to Wendy for that incredible “All Colleges Matter” troll moment, which honestly fooled me at first. That pivot was more surprising to me than anything that’s ever happened in a Christopher Nolan film, not gonna lie.
And now we must discuss Robyn’s wig, but truly, what is there to say that has not already been said? Any fan of Potomac knows there’s no wig Robyn won’t give the old college try, but this is next level. A wavy, auburn monstrosity. Sleepy Robyn’s personality is a true neutral, but her wigs are absolutely chaotic evil. The wig leads to some great comedic moments from all the ladies, with Ashley reintroducing herself to Robyn and a Candiace confessional moment where she says point blank, “Are you hiding from the IRS? Like, pay your taxes.” You gotta hand it to Candiace: the girl is mean, but she can definitely be funny sometimes. During “Wine with Wendy” Robyn says the government has programs to help support minority business owners but she doesn’t know how to get the money, and we all know Robyn needs money. As such, I’m starting a fund: Help Robyn Get New Wigs And Also Get Out Of $90,000 Worth Of Debt To The IRS But Honestly The Wigs Are The Priority.
At the end of “Wine with Wendy” Karen and Candiace have a heart-to-heart about why Karen refuses to leave Monique in a ditch on the side of the road and how hurtful that is to Candiace. Karen, who was not born yesterday and will not be badgered into submission, refuses to play any of Candiace’s little games and tacitly reminds Candiace that she’s had her back on numerous occasions where she was the aggressor. You know, like that time she threatened Ashley Darby with a knife. “One of the things I know about you Candiace is that you are brilliant. Your mind is so powerful, but so is your mouth,” says Karen, explaining precisely why Candiace got popped by Monique. Karen honestly does a gorgeous job of explaining exactly why she is supporting Monique and how she doesn’t feel the need to pick sides between the two.
Wendy eventually enters the conversation between Candiace and Karen because she wants more screen time, which is when Karen decides to fully go and pull rank on the girls and makes it very clear that she’s not going to give them what they want. Wendy, who has become both judge and jury in Monique vs. Candiace, yells at Karen for not “holding Monique accountable” for her actions, while Karen claims that she has held Monique accountable. The word “accountable” is fun because it means wildly different things to different people. Karen finally gets to take a shot at Wendy (something she’s wanted to do all season long but hasn’t yet had the opportunity) and calls Wendy “ignorant,” causing flames to start burning on the side of Dr. Wendy’s face. Karen: 1. Wendy: 0. Before episode’s end, Candiace wants to make it clear to everyone that she is HURT because she’s been ATTACKED and we are left exactly where we started. Maybe Candiace should start seeing Karen’s life coach because she’s doing one heck of a job on Mr. and Mrs. Ray Huger.