The Real Housewives of New Jersey
“Holidazed and Confused”
July 10, 2011
Kathy, the Annie Hall outfit and Jeff Goldblum, Jr. look at another space for Kathy’s potential catering-dessert-Italian-Mediterranean restaurant; this one much larger, much more expensive than they had been previously considering. And now Kathy is envisioning hookahs and belly dancers and suddenly out of nowhere we have a whole Lebanese theme going. I blame that hat.
Kathy and Jeff Goldblum Jr. go to the Brownstone to talk about the restaurant business with Albert, who laughs and laughs and laughs at the idea of these two yahoos opening a restaurant, because come on.
Melissa is also following her “dream” of becoming a singer, which means dragging a bunch of music producers to her house, plying them with alcohol and making them listen to Melissa squawk her way through a song while Folletto grins maniacally nearby. The music producers, desperate to leave, assure Melissa that she can sing (she can not) and ask if they can go home now, please. And all of this is a set up for Folletto building Melissa a music studio in her basement, because these people have more denaro than senso.
Teresa and Meatball eat dinner on the living room floor because they had to sell all their furniture because, the bankruptcy. Also, there was some sort of courtroom confrontation with a woman named Monica Chacon who is the ex-wife of Meatball’s former partner’s lawyer (I think)? And she is also friends with Kim G? The point is, we’re told that Teresa got all up in this woman’s face but we don’t get to see it because no cameras in the courtroom, boo. Teresa mentions the incident with the hopes that she never has to see this Monica Chacon puttana again. FORESHADOWING.
Caroline is dealing with her own set of problems: ever since Christopher and Albie moved out, Lauren has been pouting and lonely and miserable. The boys and Lauren’s replacement, Greg, come home to help decorate the Manzo home for Christmas and Lauren pouts and acts lonely and miserable. Also there is a Santa Claus whose face was eaten off by a rat, which is terrifying. Also, Greg calls Target and uses his “guido” voice to find out if they still have green feather Christmas trees: they do. Also, Greg and Albie and Christopher should have their own spin-off, but not with Lauren because she’s pouty and lonely and miserable.
Lauren and Jacqueline go by the boys’ apartment with dinner and Lauren starts sobbing about how much she misses her brothers and Greg rolls his eyes because COME ON, and Albie gives Lauren a key to the apartment which you would think would shut her up BUT NO …
… because she and Caroline show up at the apartment sometime later with the aforementioned feather tree and other Christmas decorations, including stockings that Lauren decorates with red pepper flakes because ITALIANO, and then pouts when she learns they had some people over for dinner this one time and didn’t invite her. Caroline and Greg roll their eyes in unison, and seriously, the Greg, Albie and Christopher show, Jersey Boyz, would be the best. Do it, Andy Cohen, you know you want to.
For reasons unexplained, Jacqueline goes to Kim G’s house, where Kim G shows her a ridiculous chandelier. This, for some reason, makes Kim G cry about this one time when she had a brain tumor. Kim G then tries to show Jacqueline some texts she’s receiving from a friend about Teresa’s bankruptcy case, and Jacqueline literally tells her to STFU, because enough already. Ugh, Kim G.
But the major story line of this episode is the “cocktail party” the producers forced Jacqueline to host, so as to mend Gorga fences and all that. Potato Face moos at her mother that she shouldn’t get involved, that she needs to not invite any more drama into her life *cough*Danielle Staub*cough* and I’m sorry, Potato Face, but was it your mother who wrote all those insane misspelled anti-Danielle posts on Facebook, and then proceeded to yank out Danielle’s hair extensions for no good reason in particular? No? Then perhaps you shouldn’t be lecturing her on avoiding the dramaz.
The “party,” such as it is — and what it is is a Real Housewives of New Jersey minus Kathy cast party, let’s not kid ourselves — begins with a little awkwardness as Melissa and Folletto arrive and are clearly tense. But after a few glasses of wine, Folletto is wearing Jacqueline’s clothes and doing high kicks and of course he is. Transvestites aren’t always gay, y’all. And all the Manzos think the Gorgas are simply amazing, because they kind of are, in a scary, dangerous kind of way, and long story short: everyone is invited to Melissa and Folletto’s Christmas festa! Cin cin!
“Twas the Fight Before Christmas”
July 17, 2011
Buon Natale, everyones! It’s the season of brotherhood and love and family and ice sculptures and Kim Gs and WHAT’S NOT TO AMARE? NATALE!
Kathy decorates her boring family’s Christmas tree with boring ornaments and a less boring Mardi Gras mask complete with not-at-all-boring peacock feathers, because nothing says “Happy Birthday, Jesus” like a masquerade mask and weird black feathers.
Caroline brings Albert to her jeweler to show him some sort of bracelet she has had designed for the kids? With leather? And loops and infinity symbols and who knows what else, and in the end, Albert gets all emotional and buys everyone in the family one of these $4500 bracelets because ALL OF THESE PEOPLE HAVE MORE DENARO THAN SENSO.
It’s Ashley’s birthday, and ol’ Potato Face is busy pouting because the man who didn’t raise her won’t be coming up from Texas to spend it with her. Jacqueline gives her some sort of witch’s amulet to protect her, from Lizzie Grubmans and bad driving, I suppose, and makes a bunch of sad noises about her father having to change his plans thanks to an ill-timed bout of the flu. But Jac doesn’t mean it, not really.
Jacqueline and her family, including all of the Manzos, take Ashley out to dinner for her birthday, to which she arrives late and then spends the entire evening texting someone, anyone, as long as they aren’t in this room right now, trying to share this moment with her, because GAH. WHO NEEDS IT.
Teresa and Meatball decorate their giant Christmas tree with Gagabool and Sfogliatelle and Mortadella and Baccala, who mostly spend their time hitting one another and chewing on glass ornaments while Teresa yammers on about Melissa and her bad energy which gives Teresa headaches because SCIENCE. Also, we learn that when Meatball went to jail before, for driving drunk and then coming up with the brilliant cover story that he did shots after he drove his car into a tree — a genius legal strategy if ever there was one — they told the girls he was going on a fishing trip rather than tell them the truth: their father is very, very dumb. Great plan! Good thing none of that is on some kind of record that their daughters might come across one day!
Melissa and Folletto are also decorating for Christmas, as they are having some sort of extravagant Christmas party, for the children. In a moment of drag-induced weakness, they might have invited everyone — including Meatball and Teresa — to the party, and now Melissa is a little concerned. Mostly about Meatball: it seems that one of her sisters claims that his mother punched her in the face during the infamous christening, which we shall never be done talking about. 1. Awesome. 2. Well, they’re not inviting Meatball’s mother, are they? Then what’s the problem?
Fabulous Fred the Event Planner arrives to the Gorga’s house bearing cookies (which had better be pignolis if he knows what’s good for him) and many, many plans on how to spend their money: ICE SCULPTURES OF FOLLETTO AND MELISSA MAKING OUT! CASINO TABLES! CAROLERS! DJS! WINTER WONDERLANDS! CANDLES, SO MANY CANDLES! But they are doing this all for the “kids” so what’s spending $50,000 on a party? IT’S FOR THE KIDS.
Everyone gets ready for the party. This involves Fabulous Fred for some reason coming into Melissa’s bathroom while she has her hair and makeup applied (screen time) and Teresa hiring a new set of makeup/hair people, thanks to Melissa stealing her previous people. This, despite the fact that she and Meatball were eating on the living room floor not the week before because they have no dining room furniture to use BECAUSE THEY ARE BANKRUPT.
Melissa wears what looks like a wedding dress, complete with tiara, to her party, and I swear, I’ve been looking at these promotional pictures for weeks now, certain that she and Folletto were going to be renewing their vows or something, because look at this outfit:
I’m not crazy, right? RIGHT? Still, I suppose a wedding dress wouldn’t be so sheer that she would be urged by her sisters to just take off the very visible g-string and go commando like she were Sonja Morgan, right?
Anyway. Everyone arrives to this crazy party, which just as Fabulous Fred the Event Planner promised includes ice sculptures and a “red carpet” where everyone has their pictures taken and casino tables and carolers and DJs and whatever else. Well, everyone but Teresa and Meatball, whom she can’t motivate to get off the Lazy Boy already and put on some pants. Eventually he does, and as they are getting in the car, Meatball demonstrates his powerful high kick which haters will get in the face if they mess with him.
Upon arriving at the party, Teresa is greeted by Kathy, who, in an attempt to mend fences (supposedly) tells Teresa that it is really nice to see her. Teresa is all O RLY? NOW IT’S NICE TO SEE ME? HUH. Kathy goes stomping off back to her sister Rose, fuming that Teresa never changes, and then drags Jeff Goldblum, Jr. into a closet to shriek at him about how Teresa made her look like a jerk. Jeff Goldblum, Jr. threatens to burn the place down, obviously. When Kathy tattles to Melissa, Melissa kinda shrugs. Look, no one needs a replay of the christening. Is Teresa horrible? Of course. But maybe Kathy needs to be the bigger person and get over it, and not ruin Christmas. IT’S FOR THE KIDS, KATHY.
However, the Giudices are far from finished with this Obstacle Course of Things That Make Them Punchy (or High-Kicky, as the case may be). Far from it. Meatball is confronted by one of Folletto’s brother-in-laws who has clearly had a vodka shot or 8, and begins yelling at Meatball that he wants his $1000. Meatball, SOMEHOW, manages to just walk away without kicking anyone in the face, which makes both Teresa and I very proud. Small steps, people.
BUT THAT’S NOT THE FINAL AND MOST DANGEROUS OBSTACLE. Because who should walk in but Kim G along with her uninvited guest, Monica Chacon, the woman Teresa most recently had screamed at for some reason. Kim G and Monica Chacon toast to people who can control themselves (and can’t stop throwing themselves in front of cameras in desperate pleas for attention and/or the opportunity to fill Kathy’s spot when she leaves the show for being so, so terribly boring). Teresa manages to not march over to Kim G and Monica Chacon and throw a table at them or even call them prostitution whores, but instead, relatively calmly asks her brother to ask Monica Chacon to leave.
So Melissa and Folletto take Kim G and Monica Chacon aside and gently explain that Monica Chacon simply isn’t welcome at the party, and she needs to leave. Teresa is here, and they really would rather this party not devolve into a brawl, so please and thank you. Kim G, however, counters that she “can’t do that.” Melissa and Folletto explain that she most certainly can, and she must, now. And Kim G responds, “No.” Wash, rinse, repeat about 15 more times, until Monica Chacon gets as bored with this conversation as the rest of us, and sees herself out.
HOWEVER. THAT’S NOT THE END OF IT, MIEI CARI, NOT BY A LONG SHOT. And I promise I won’t make you wait another 2 weeks for the next recap. Maybe just a week or so.
The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Wednesdays on Bravo at 8/9 CST.
This post first appeared on the Hearst site Chron.com.