‘The Real Housewives of New Jersey:’ Leavin’ on a jet plane

The Real Housewives of New Jersey
“Poker Face”
April 29, 2012

Honestly, I should just post those gifs above of Mortadella being Mortadella (being awesome) and be done with it. Because, seriously, while this episode looked like a lot happened, it was actually just a bunch of running in place. Teresa is still making half-hearted apologies about her cookbook, Melissa is still mad at Teresa for calling her a gold digger for the eleventy-thousandth time, Potatoee Face is still in Jac’s house, Meatball is still an aggressive meatball who likes to touch other men in the bathing suit area, Lauren is still overweight. Same old, stessa vecchia.


As noted above, Lauren is still having trouble losing weight on account of eating all of the foods. And so, the ciabatta and the salsiccia and the mozzarella and the pasta amatriciana are being set aside, again, in favor of what appears to be a Gatorade and berry diet, which I’m sure will work. She’ll be 40 pounds lighter in no time. And it will be fascinating television while she does it, definitely.

Other super-interesting things: Jeff Goldblum, Jr. takes his son, Whatever-His-Name-Is (Joey? Joe? Chris? Joe? These are really the only names men are given on this show, so I assume it is one of those), to one of the gas stations he owns, because … Well, I’m not really sure. To show him business things? LESS JOEY AND GAS STATIONS, MORE MORTADELLA, PER FAVORE.

A slightly more intriguing development is the revelation that Joey Goldblum, Jr. has been receiving sexy nekkid pictures from teen girls. Kathy discovers this on-camera, which, no she didn’t, and she and Jeff Goldblum, Jr. spend an awful lot of time looking at the obscene photos of a teenager, which aside from being so very gross, is I’m pretty sure, completely illegal, and Jeff Goldblum, Jr. is creeping me out with the whole, “Heh heh heh heh” and the leering and the being proud of his son, and the wanting to send the precocious porn star a suggestion to contact Joey when he turns 18 AND NOW I HAVE TO GO TAKE A SILKWOOD SHOWER, SO GRAZIE FOR THAT, JEFF GOLDBLUM, JR.

SAD NEWS: Teresa and Meatball’s pizza palace è morto. Or at least I think it is. But since Teresa and Meatball never actually say that the pizza joint went under, but instead just stand around the empty restaurant and make vague noises about what a good time they had there (like that time they made Gabagool sing “9 to 5” and sob in front of her entire family); and how the problem was that they just had too much business — a common problem in the food industry: too many customers; and that it maybe, probably, kinda didn’t help the business when Meatball had to “go away,” like he was on a business trip in St. Louis or something, I’m guessing that the pizza enterprise didn’t work out. But no worries! Meatball has plans: he’s going to tear down the gas station across the street and build a home for senior meatballs. R.I.P. pizza place. You’ve already been forgotten.

Not to be outdone by his meatball-in-law, Folletto also shows off his real estate empire to the cameras. He owns that building and that building over there, and the other one over here. He’s like a swarthy tiny little Donald Trump. This is an extraordinarily boring interlude whose primary purpose seems to be to juxtapose Folletto and Meatball, again, and allow Melissa to complain, again, about Teresa calling her una cercatore d’oro. It will not be the last time.

Good news, music lovers! Melissa Gorga has recorded a new song in her basement studio: a testament to her love for Folletto in auto-tuned ballad form, entitled “How Many Times (Dear Folletto).”


She presents the song to her husband over a romantic home-cooked dinner, just the two of them, their love, some steaks,  and a full camera crew. Folletto, overwhelmed with emotion and “poison,” picks Melissa up and carries her off to their bedroom. Which, fine. They have the sex. Good for them. But here’s a question: at what point does the camera crew go home? Do they hang out in the hallway and wait? Do they let themselves out? MYSTERY. GROSS MYSTERY.

Hey! Remember how Chris Laurita was like, “HEY, POTATOEE FACE, GET YOUR CRAP AND GET OUT OF MY HOUSE.” And Potatoee Face was all, “Waaaaah.” And Chris Laurita was like, “NO, I KNOW I’VE SAID THIS BEFORE, BUT I’M SERIOUS THIS TIME. REALLY. VERY SERIOUS. GET OUT.” And Potatoee Face was all, “Hang on, I’m tweeting about how much I hate you. Waaaaaaah.” And then Chris Laurita was like, “HERE’S THE ONE WAY TICKET TO LAS VEGAS I PURCHASED FOR YOU. GO PACK YOUR VALIGIE, YOU’RE LEAVING TOMORROW.” And Potatoee Face was all, “But I was going to go to get an ill-thought-out tattoo that implies I am a slutty slut on my ankle and then pass out in a Manhattan nightclub bathroom tonight. Waaaaaaah.” Well, Chris Laurita was for reals this time. And so Potatoee Face packs her suitcase with her hair bleach and collagen and sense of entitlement which takes up most of the room, and she drags her suitcase down the stairs where Albie is waiting to drive her to Newark because Jacqueline just can. not.

As they drive to the airport, Potatoee Face whines about being anxious about flying, and whines that she’s not 21 so she could get a drink before her flight, and whines that she “literally took a straw to a bottle of Nyquil,” because as Albie says, “she thinks she’s Kie$ha.” INDEED. THAT IS A TRUE FACT. PROPS TO YOU, ALBIE.

But then Albie’s brain stops working, and instead of walking her to security, as Jacqueline requested he do, he drops Potatoee Face off at the airport curb, and is like, “Good luck, 20-year-old woman who should be able to manage getting on an airplane by herself!”

Potatoee Face is unable to get onto an airplane by herself.

Before Albie is even off of the freeway, Potatoee Face is calling him to announce that she missed her flight (of course) and is waiting on standby for a 7:45 flight (there is no way) and that if she can’t get on this flight, she’s coming back home tonight (there it is). Albie SIGHS HEAVILY, and then heads over to Jacqueline’s to deliver the buona notizia. Jacqueline, who is busy making meatballs for the poker night/Smell Ya Later, Potatoee Face festa they’re hosting, receives this about as well as would be expected, and gives Albie a look that would kill a lesser uomo. Chris Laurita comes home and simply shakes his head, because WE ALL KNEW THIS WAS GOING TO HAPPEN, COME ON. No one in the entire world is less surprised that Potatoee Face missed her flight and headed back home than Chris “Pack Your Bags For Real This Time” Laurita. Albie, realizing that he’s the one who let down the side by not delivering Potatoee Face directly to the plane, decides to remind everyone who the real villainess is here, and reads Potatoee Face’s airport tweets, wherein, in search of donuts, she wanders the terminal in every direction other than the one towards her airplane. OBVIOUS PLOY TO MISS FLIGHT IS OBVIOUS.

Soon, the guests arrive at Jac’s house and they eat the meatballs and the cheese except for Lauren because neither of those things are Gatorade or berries. (But she is drinking wine? Is wine on this diet? I don’t recall the doctor handing Lauren a bottle of wine and being like, “And this. Drink all of this that you want.”) Soon, Potatoee Face breezes into the kitchen because she is a freaking ninja at not being kicked out of her mother’s casa. You thought you could get rid of Potatoee Face with a one-way ticket to Vegas and a ride to the airport! HA! POTATOEE FACE LAUGHS AT YOUR NAIVITÉ. SHE LAUGHS AT IT. And now if you will excuse her, she is headed upstairs to settle back into her over-indulged life, grazie very much.

The conversation turns to the impending arrival of Teresa and Meatball, and Folletto announces that he doesn’t want to talk smack about his sister, but that he totally does. Melissa is all, “I’m not going to tell you what she said about me, but she called me una cercatore d’oro.” Everyone applauds Melissa for taking the high ground by not telling them what Teresa did when she tells them all what Teresa did.

Teresa and Meatball arrive and Teresa is all, “Hey, everybody, I want to deliver an insincere apology to all of you!”

Everyone says, “Oh look! Meatballs!”

“I’m serious, I want to tell you that I’m sorry that you read my book wrong, and managed to be offended by it since I didn’t write anything offensive!” Teresa announces.

“Hey! It’s Vito!” Everyone replies. “Hi Vito! So good to see you, Vito!”

“They were jokes! And I included Folletto in the acknowledgements so I get points for that!” Teresa declares.

“…” Everyone says.

“Come on! I wasn’t horrible to all of you!” Teresa whines.

“You know what? You need the denaro. So we’ll take one for the team,” answers Melissa. Which, MEOW. And, yikes!

And with that, the men retire to the poker room where over the game Meatball suggests that he’s taller than someone else in the room? Which is hilarious because Meatball isn’t taller than my 7-year-old? And this makes people angry? And then Meatball goes to punch Jeff Goldblum, Jr. in the braggiole? Because that’s as high as he can reach without a stepstool?

I don’t know. All I know is that this ends with Meatball sporting a black eye WHICH SHOULD BE EXPECTED WHEN YOU PUNCH SOMEONE IN THE BRAGGIOLE. Unfortunately, Jeff Goldblum, Jr. didn’t actually retaliate, exactly, but instead, as Meatball went to punch Jeff Goldblum, Jr. in the braggiole, it turned into a wrestling match and then a candlestick holder fell on Meatball’s face and long story short: HA HA HA HA HA HA HA.

The next night, Teresa has a book signing, and because of il Meatballs’ financial worries, they’ve had to let their nanny(ies) go, so now Meatball is the nanny because, honestly, what else does he have to do/where’s he going to go without a driver’s license? Still, they should try to find some denaro for some help around the casa, because Meatball is a terrible, terrible nanny. When Baccala cuts her knee, Meatball responds by pouring himself a glass of wine. When Mortadella punches his dinner guests in the braggiole (I can not for the life of me figure out where a five-year-old would learn such a thing), Meatball pours himself another glass of wine. When Mortadella body slams her baby sister on the marble floor, Meatball pours himself another glass of wine and then orders Gabagool to put the baby to bed. Very good nannying! Maybe this is the answer to his job woes, and he should become a professional nanny because he is very good at it.

Christopher and Albie and Chris Laurita come over to have dinner with Meatball and be punched in the braggiole by his daughters. They shake their heads at how molto molto stupido Meatball is, what with the drivers license shenanigans and the wrestling with Jeff Goldblum, Jr. and the black eye and the making fun of Folletto for being sued. Christopher notes that he used to love Drunk Meatball, but now Drunk Meatball just makes him sad. He makes us all sad, Christopher. Christopher then does an amazing impersonation of Drunk Meatball comparing his brain to God’s brain, explaining to Christopher that Meatball has the second best brain AFTER GOD. And there just isn’t anything I can add to this to make it any better because it is the very best. The Very Best Thing. After God.

Meanwhile, Teresa is at her book signing, where she meets a stalker who drove all the way from Oklahoma to see Teresa and ask her pointed questions about Teresa’s personal life and Meatball’s chances for going to meatball jail. YOU ARE MY NEW HERO, OKLAHOMA STALKER.

Finally, the next morning Chris Laurita tells Potatoee Face to get her crap and get in the car, they are headed to the airport again, and she and Jac are like, “Bye, whatever.” Which seems pretty callous when you think this is GOODBYE FOREVER, POTATOEE FACE! But Jac was on Watch What Happens Live! right after this aired and revealed that it was a two-week trip to Las Vegas and not GOODBYE FOREVER, POTATOEE FACE! so I guess we now know who talks a big game, CHRIS LAURITA. But whatever. Chris Laurita and Potatoee Face drive to the airport again, as Jac explains that sometime during this entire farce with her daughter, Potatoee Face was diagnosed with depression and given Xanax which seems like an excellent idea for someone who is drinking Nyquil out of the bottle with a straw while harboring delusions of being Kei$ha. This is a tremendous plan. Anyway. Jacqueline takes out Potatoee Face’s old baby books and cries over What Could Have Been and whether or not Potatoee Face is going to hate her forever, and alas, alas. Meanwhile, Chris Laurita walks Potatoee Face all the way into security instead of just dropping her off at the curbside check-in, which nice try, Laurita, but you think that’s gonna do it? We’re talking about someone who has a Ph.D. in Staying Put Where She Is Not Wanted. Short of buying a ticket yourself and flying with her to Las Vegas and then going with her to Uncle Tom and Aunt Mary’s house and then locking all of the doors and windows from the outside and then burning down the airport so that no planes can fly back to New Jersey, you will never be rid of Potatoee Face. NEVER! CURSE OF THE POTATOEE FACE!

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The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. on Bravo.

This post originally appeared on the Hearst site Chron.com.

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