The Real Housewives of New York
“Birds, Broads and Breakups”
April 24, 2019
This episode begins with Bethenny picking up Sonja for an excursion off of Manhattan and straight into the heart of darkness, DEEPEST BROOKLYN.
On the ride, they discuss the dinner party the night before, and Tinsley’s predicament, to which Sonja shares her mother’s wisdom: “users get used” — though I’m not entirely sure applies here, and Bethenny adds her own platitude: “You marry for money, you’ll pay for the rest of your life,” to which SONJA MORGAN adds an “Amen” as if she HAS ANY BUSINESS DOING SO.
Bethenny then claims that the kiss with Barbara was the first time she’s ever kissed a woman upon which I call bullshit because I have definite memories of Bethenny kissing the other ladies ON THIS SHOW. Or maybe this is one of those instances of the Mandela effect, and Bethenny and Sonja kissing is as real as the Sinbad movie Shazaam.
They eventually arrive at their destination, the artist Hunt Slonem’s enormous studio, filled with bunny paintings and one entire wing filled with cages and cages and cages and CAGES of parrots. Not paintings of parrots, real parrots. Alive parrots.
Netflix, I’ve found your sequel to Tiger King. CALL ME.
Also, Hunt has a bunch of photos of himself with Sonja and one of himself with Tinsley in the Before Times, and Bethenny is like, “So she really was a socialite! HUH!” Which, yeah, of course, she was. I mean, even I remember her from the old Page Six days and I could give a flying fuck about the whole New York socialite scene. BUT I DIGRESS.
As does this plotline which was mostly to give Slonem some free publicity, I guess.
As for Tinsley, she and The Countess go to an Al-Anon meeting together, and after, they grab a coffee where Tinsley yammers at The Countess about how she struggles with public speaking and how she’s still struggling with her feelings about her father. Meanwhile, The Countess’s entire attention is focused on her struggle with the cinnamon container because she honestly could not give less of a shit about Tinsley’s daddy issues.
They sit down, and The Countess is like, yeah yeah you’re mad at your dead dad, let’s get to the actual story: What the hell happened with you at Bethenny’s the other night? After dancing a little bit, and talking about how difficult it is to not live in the same city and how he is just not a public person (read: he doesn’t want to be on a reality show) and he won’t be coming to her big night as the ringmaster of the Big Apple Circus. The Countess is surprised by this, but Tinsley explains that actually, they broke up.
Tinsley explains that after Bethenny’s dinner, she called Scott and she told him the bottom line is that she needed him in New York. He couldn’t do that, so that’s it. It’s over.
And I’m sure we’ll never hear about Scott again, the end.
Tinsley then goes to the Big Apple Circus with Dorinda to check in and find out what she’ll be doing as the ringmaster. Dorinda doesn’t even try to be cool about how jealous she is that Tinsley is doing this and says as much about 73 separate times.
As for Tinsley, she won’t shut up about how much the Big Apple Circus means to her because her father used to take her every year when she was a kid and it’s super meaningful because of how she would go every year with her dad and it’s really special because her father, who is dead, used to take her, and boy would he be proud of her now and did she mention that this is a really important moment for her? Because Circus? and Childhood? and Dad? WHO IS NOW DEAD?
They meet the trapeze artists and Dorinda scampers up the ladder to join them and swing for a few. Tinsley, who says she’s terrified, follows Dorinda’s example and swings on the trapeze for about 5 seconds.
Elsewhere, Ramona, Sonja, and The Countess go to the hottest pick-up joint for septuagenarian Upper East Siders, TBar, where they are greeted by some guy named “Michael” who REALLY wants to get on camera. “EVERYONE LOVES MIIIIIICHAEL,” yells Sonja, before noting that The Countess turned bright red upon seeing him, and therefore must have boned him. Which maybe! But then that also probably applies to half of the men there.
Also at the bar: Ramona’s ex-husband Mario, which sends Sonja into fits. “HE’S SO GORGEOUS! THIS IS THE DAD TO YOUR DAUGHTER! YOUR HUSBAND!” she screams at Ramona, I suppose believing that Ramona has suffered some sort of head injury and has forgotten her ex-husband? Unclear.
Mario explains that he’s brought gifts — old products Ramona used to hawk that he found in his office, including some of those turtle-shaped wine glass earrings …
And some ugly-ass True Faith t-shirts from that jewelry line Ramona and Mario started together (and still operate? unclear).
The other women note that Ramona becomes super nervous/flirty around Mario and it is just very uncomfortable for everyone involved, including the audience.
Ramona tells Mario about how Avery has some friends barely older than herself who are planning to get married, prompting Mario to share his newfound philosophy on marriage: that it should be renewed like a contract every 7 years or so. Which … so … OK, but how would this work and how would it actually be any different than what we have now? Could you renew your contract after it has lapsed for some period of time? And if not, how is this any different than getting divorced or staying married?
The Countess teases that Mario and Ramona should renew their contract, but Ramona is less enthused.
Finally, Dorinda hosts a spa day for the women at the Palace Hotel in a suite that I am 99.999999% certain served as Blair Waldorf’s home. (It is.)
Dorinda then reveals that she has a bone to pick with Ramona: apparently three days earlier, Ramona invited her to go to the Angel Ball but then once at the event, ditched Dorinda for what she considered a better table.
Because, Ramona, there’s always footage, you goon.
Anyway, people begin arriving at Dorinda’s spa day and everyone oohs and aahs over the suite, and then Dorinda wastes NO TIME in confronting Ramona for ditching her at the gala, noting that Ramona lied in the Page Six piece about what happened. In the article, Ramona claims that the organizers put her at a different table from Dorinda, but the footage clearly has her on mic confirming that she is at the same table with Dorinda — table 62 — before moving herself to table 61.
Ramona insists — in fact, SHE SWEARS ON AVERY’S LIFE — that her ticket said 61, but Dorinda, she knows the people whose seat Ramona stole and is not having it. But when Dorinda won’t back down and just accept Ramona’s blatant lie, Ramona shoves her backward. And there is a moment when it looks like Dorinda very well might just murder her.
But! Fortunately, this takes place during the pre-drinking stage of the afternoon, and Dorinda does not yank out Ramona’s extensions. Instead, she explains to Ramona who is just scurrying around the suite at this point to try to get away from the truth, that it was gross of her to invite Dorinda for a “girl’s night” and then abandon her to do some social climbing.
Dorinda, knowing that she’s the victor here, drops it, and Ramona never apologizes. Which I didn’t even notice — I was more amazed that this didn’t turn into a season-long feud especially after the shoving incident. But the wonderful John Mulaney, who is an admitted fan of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, has just begun watching RHONY. This week on Late Night with Seth Meyers, he revealed his big observation about the New York women: THEY NEVER APOLOGIZE TO EACH OTHER (the whole segment is great, but the apology conversation begins at the 2:50 mark if you just want to cut to it):
“So let’s say that I said you were tacky, Seth … and that you show up to events like a stalker … I tell Fred this, Fred tells you immediately. We’re at a function within hours together and you call me out on it, and you’re mad at me. The way I would apologize is to say, ‘I just want to put this behind us.’ And you’d hug me and you’d say, ‘Ok, I just want to put thi–,’ And I’d say, ‘We’re good, right? We’re good.’ And never would I say that I insulted you directly on camera knowing it would get back to you with little remorse. I would just say, ‘We’re good, right? I want to put this behind us.'”
SO! Tinsley chats with Dorinda and Ramona about the Big Apple Circus and Ramona predicts (correctly) that everyone will be there except Bethenny and The Countess. And this is where Dorinda hugs Ramona and explains that she can’t stay mad at Ramona, she just wanted to get it out there and get it “behind us.”
Sonja and Tinsley chat, and Tinsley reveals that she and Scott broke up, to which Sonja replies, “did you have to tell me that right now when I’m in such a good mood?” Cool response, Friend! Tinsley goes on to explain that the Truth or Dare game triggered something inside her and made her realize that things weren’t healthy with Scott if she couldn’t bring herself to call him.
That’s when Bethenny arrives and Tinsley opens with “I BROKE UP WITH SCOTT,” before Bethenny can even put her purse down. Bethenny notes Tinsley’s remarkably chipper mood, and calls her the “poster child for breakups,” BUT I’M NOT SURE THAT’S THE RIGHT TAKE, B. Tinsley then reminds Bethenny that she’s hosting the circus that Sunday, to which Bethenny quips that it’s ironic that she’s going to be the “ringmaster because in this relationship [she] was not the master of any ring.”
Ramona and Dorinda also offer their sympathies but Tinsley is all, “NO NO EVERYTHING IS FINE I AM TOTALLY FINE IT’S GREAT I AM DEFINITELY NOT GOING TO HAVE A BREAKDOWN ANYTIME SOON BECAUSE ALL OF THIS IS GOOD AND FINE AND I AM FINE.”
Bethenny, Ramona and The Countess discuss Mario’s surprise second act appearance, and Ramona insists that while she took him home that night, all that happened between them was that she “stroked his face with some cream.”
Barbara is also there because they are still trying to make this whole Barbara thing happen. Sonja takes her aside and informs her that it got back to Ramona that Barbara said she didn’t like Ramona at Bethenny’s dinner party after Ramona left. Barbara is like, “I mean, she doesn’t like me either and has said as much. Many times. On camera.” But Sonja insists that Barbara just make nice.
And Barbara does make nice … with Dorinda. Barbara notes that they somehow got off track but that she wants to be friends again, and Dorinda agrees and becomes a little weepy because she’s actually a giant marshmallow. A marshmallow that grows spikes at the first drop of alcohol, but a marshmallow nonetheless.
Barbara then approaches Ramona and asks if she’d like to talk. Ramona is passively-aggressively non-responsive, so Barbara tells her she’ll be there until 1:30 if she decides she wants to chat. Ramona hisses, “You really like those wrap dresses, don’t you,” which is a HILARIOUS insult if only for its sheer weirdness. Barbara does not bite, and agrees that she does, in fact, like a wrap dress, to which Ramona suggests she should mix it up, otherwise she’ll be known as that woman who only wears wrap dresses. Barbara, who might actually be too smart for this show, suggests that Ramona should take her shopping and show her what she likes: she’s open to suggestions!
Ramona huffs that she hears Barbara doesn’t like her, so why would she want to go shopping with her? And that’s when Barbara does something remarkable: she apologizes. Yes, she admits, she did say something to the effect that she did not really like Ramona. She can only say that she got caught up in a moment, and she’s sorry.
And that genuine apology, Dear Reader, that is how you know Barbara Kavovit will never, ever, ever be a Real Housewife of New York City.
The Real Housewives of New York airs on Bravo on Wednesdays at 8/9 p.m.