‘Real Housewives of New Jersey’: Hekyll and Jyde

The Real Housewives of New Jersey
“Best Friends for Never”
June 17, 2012

Let’s get this out of the way: Lauren is still dieting. The diet isn’t working. Lauren admits that the diet isn’t working while eating fruit salads and pepperoni salads. Will Lauren ever lose the weight? asks absolutely no one. And listen, Producers, I understand you lost Reality Show Gold when Jac shipped Potatoee Face off to wherever, but I assure you “Lauren ties to go on a diet” is as much of a non-story as last season’s “Caroline has a radio show.” Quit trying to make “Lauren tries to go on a diet” happen! It’s not going to happen! (Especially since the only way Lauren is going to lose weight involves lapband surgery, so let’s just cut to the chase already. Still, she looks great!)

I will grant, however, that the scene in which Lauren and the Manzo boys make fun of Caroline for constantly tweeting constantly, and they call her and hang up as soon as she answers, that was charming. Just wish it had more Lauren worrying about her diet because I just can’t get bastante of that story.

And now we can talk about what this episode is really about: Teresa and her tenuous grasp on reality bankruptcy. She’s not going to let a little thing like financial ruin destroy her life, yous guys. She and Meatball, they are going to build a proper shed for their large construction equipment over by the Direwolf kennel, and they are going to build a carport and they are going to build a garage with an apartment above it and they are going to build another shed where they will store the throwing tables and throwing wine. And yes, maybe they’ve declared bankruptcy. Which might make you think that perhaps now is not the very best time for a lot of expensive construction projects but 1. this is what Meatball does for a living and 2. just because yous gone bankrupt doesn’t mean yous have to crawl into a hole and die which is the exact same thing as being fiscally responsible and 3. mind yer own business, gawd.

Also, there is another sighting of the elusive Sfgotielle which means she’s been on camera more times in this season than all previous four seasons put together and I guess I should maybe stop making all the comments about how we never see this kid ever and wait let me think about that, NOPE. Not going to happen. I’m going to keep making those comments forever. WHAT.

Meanwhile, Folletto meets with his architect who informs Folletto of Meatball’s fancy garage/carport/throwing table shed plans, and how il Meatballs intend to move Folletto and Teresa’s parents into the garage apartment, and ohbytheway Meatball’s carport looks exactly like il Follettos’. O RLY, says Folletto. HUH, says Folletto.

And at casa delle Folletto, Melissa and all 17 of her sisters are hula hooping out on the driveway when Kathy comes over, armed with yet another tabloid magazine article about Teresa and her money nightmares. This particular story claims that both Teresa and Meatball might be headed to meatball jail for pulling some financial shenanigans in their bankruptcy proceedings. Like, felonious shenanigans. Kathy worries about her cousin, but Melissa shrugs and tells Kathy to go tell it to Teresa. It’s probably a bunch of made-up nonsense anyway. Teresa could go to jail: so what who cares.

Jacqueline cares, for one. After drunk Skyping with Potatoee Face’s father to discuss just how terrible Potatoee Face is (very, very terrible), Jacqueline moves on to Problem #2: Teresa’s possible imprisonment. According to the article: “Bankruptcy trustees allege that Teresa knowingly withheld assets, including a $250,000 advance for her Skinny Italian cookbook.” Basically, she had in hand a book contract a week before she declared bankruptcy but waited a month to sign it so that the monies would not be applied to the previous debts that were to be wiped out by bankruptcy. Clever! But not clever at all. In fact, it might be a felony.

And contrary to what her sister-in-law might think, it’s For Real and it is Serious Business. Teresa and Meatball meet with their avvocato who uses his stern face and big avvocato words to explain that basically Meatball’s portion of the bankruptcy has been settled, but Teresa’s is not settled at all and did he mention this is Serious Business? Because it is. Serious Go Straight To Meatball Jail Business.

Jac decides to ask Teresa to swing by the house, because as noted, she has read about this Serious Go Straight To Meatball Jail Business in the tabloids, and yet, Teresa hasn’t said a word abut any of it to Jac, Teresa’s supposed very best amica. This Jacqueline finds curious. I mean, Jacqueline and Chris Laurita offered to buy all of il Meatballs’ furniture if it went to auction and give it back to them! If it came to that! Which it didn’t! But Chris Laurita will tell us many times on camera that this is how far he and Jacqueline were willing to go! If it came to that! But it didn’t!

So Teresa shows up and Jacqueline asks her if she’s going to meatball jail and Teresa is all WHAAAAAT? before suggesting that Jacqueline call her avvocato herself if she’s so interested. Jacqueline mentions the meatball jail magazine story and explains that she’s just trying to figure out what the truth is. After all, it’s awfully confusing that il Meatballs have declared bankruptcy, but are building a new garage and closet and carport and throwing wine shed. Teresa responds that she and Meatball have been working their little meatball culos off, and Jacqueline is like, oh I know, you’ve been earning plenty of money selling all those stories to In Touches and the Us Weeklies. Teresa is OLTRAGGIATO! She has NEVER sold stories to the tabloids. HOW DARE JACQUELINE SUGGEST THE THING THAT TERESA TOLD HER JUST LAST WEEK IN CHICAGO?! Jacqueline reminds Teresa that she herself said she still had two more tabloid covers on her contract, and Teresa is INDIGNATO! First of all, the magazines just call her for quotes. Second of all, it is NONE OF JACQUELINE’S BUSINESS! Jacqueline attempts to point out that this is what amici do: share things with one another and help each other out when things are difficult. For instance, it would be nice if Teresa maybe asked Jacqueline how things are going in her life, like with Potatoee Face or whatever. Teresa disagrees. That would be prying. And then Teresa accuses Jacqueline of being crazy, of being a real “Hekyll and Jyde.” Perfect. There is nothing more perfect than that.

Finally, the real reason Jacqueline is upset with Teresa comes to light: Teresa has been tweeting with ol’ ProstitutionWhoreHead SquareBoobs herself. It seems Danielle, miserable that she is no longer the worst villain that ever villained on RHONJ, decided to try to stir up some trouble by tweeting to Melissa:

Daniellestaub: @melissagorga Melissa Did you ever tell Teresa you were contacting me constantly?

Teresa saw this of course, and felt vindicated — she finally had proof that Melissa was trying to “destroy” her by contacting Danielle, Teresa’s bitter enemy, to do … something. It is unclear what, exactly. And so in perhaps the most ironic, Totally Missing the Entire Point moment, Teresa tweeted back to Danielle:

Teresa_Giudice: Thank you @daniellestaub for telling the truth. I’m sad but not surprised. 🙁 #famewhore

Because SquareBoobs is obviously telling the truth: 1. she’s so very trustworthy and 2. she has absolutely no reason to make trouble.

Also, this whole incident is fascinating and very telling about Teresa’s psyche: she is mad at her sister-in-law for being in (theoretical and unproven) contact with Danielle Staub, Teresa’s mortal enemy, so she contacts Danielle Staub, her mortal enemy to thank her for telling her that her sister-in-law had been in touch. Amazing.

Now add to all of this the fact that Jacqueline is upset with Teresa for being in contact with SquareBoobs after everything that went down between SquareBoobs and Potatoee Face, and is worried that Teresa might be reintroducing SquareBoobs back to their lives, and ta-da! Confrontation.

Teresa defends her decision to contact SquareBoobs, arguing that being in contact with her is worth it if she can prove that Melissa has been scheming against Teresa this entire time. Teresa begins shrieking about how Melissa attacked her for the way she behaved after Little Joe’s birth, which I suppose comes up because that’s what SquareBoobs revealed so cryptically at the reunion that started this whole mess? In any event, this allows Jacqueline to point out Teresa’s hypocrisy: that she refuses to go to therapy because she doesn’t want to rehash the past, but she’s more than happy to fixate on the past if it benefits Teresa. Like by tweeting her sworn enemy to confirm that her sister-in-law had contacted said enemy some two years previous.

In response, Teresa goes full-on Manson Lamps.

teresa rhonj no naaahoooow real housewives of new jersey.gif

Teresa attempts to defend all of her poor choices by arguing that this feud between herself and Folletto is hurting i loro genitori, and so the best way to fix the problem is to let the past go and forgive Melissa for contacting Danielle two years ago dig up the past and attempt to expose her sister-in-law to Folletto. If only he knew! Things might be different! Somehow!

And that’s when, completely unannounced, Caroline appears, wondering whyfor all the screaming? Teresa feels ambushed, and it’s rather difficult to blame her — because, honestly. Are you telling us that Caroline just happened to show up over at Jacqueline’s house in the middle of this confrontation to, what, drop off some baby clothes? COME ON. Obviously someone called her, be it the producers or Chris Laurita, someone gave Caroline the tip that she needed to come over and back up Jacqueline.

ANYWAY. Caroline seconds the accusation that Teresa is being paid by the tabloids, which Teresa disputes by saying that she merely planted the story about she and Meatball renewing their vows to stave off all the rumors of their imminent divorzio. Caroline is not convinced. After all, Teresa slammed her in the tabloids just last week, all the while she pretended nothing was wrong at Jaime’s wedding. WHAT? Yous expected Teresa to bring it up at the wedding and ruin everyone’s good time? FUGGEDABOUDIT.

After screaming at everyone to let her get a word in edgewise, Jacqueline demonstrates for Teresa how she might have brought up the magazine situation with Caroline, by acting out Teresa coming to Caroline first and telling her that she had no idea the editors were going to lump Caroline in with Teresa’s other haterz, Melissa, Kim G, etc. Unfortunately, there is no available gif for Teresa’s response, “Are these bitches really role playing?” which I very much want embroidered on a pillow. Somehow the whole cookbook nonsense gets dragged back up again, and when Teresa reminds Caroline that she apologized for that, Caroline declares it an empty apology.

Besides, that’s not the biggest problem Caroline has with Teresa — there’s also the part where Teresa has been trying to turn Caroline’s famiglia against her. And is anyone else as baffled by the entire Dina and Caroline situation as I am? WHAT. HAPPENED. All of these fights dance around some unspoken fallout between the sisters, and we’re left with vague accusations and incriminations. SOMEONE TELL ME WHAT HAPPENED. And no, Dina, this does not count.

ANYWHO, Jacqueline eventually decides that she’s had enough and doesn’t want to fight with Teresa anymore and that they simply see events differently and there’s nothing to be done and she has enough stress in her life. Teresa notes that it feels like she and Jacqueline are going through a friendship divorce, and finds the whole thing rather sad. And so she kisses Jacqueline goodbye and heads home. Arrivederci, you patz!

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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