‘The Real Housewives of New York City’: Comedy = Tragedy + Vodka and lime

The Real Housewives of New York
“Just the Sip”
May 7, 2020


Hey, remember Jacques? The Countess’ boy toy from a few years back? The one she cheated on with that dimestore Captain Jack Sparrow impersonator? Well, Jacques’s back — at least for lunch. He meets with The Countess and we learn he’s engaged to some other lady and The Countess wants us to know that she is VERY HAPPY FOR HIM, TRULY. They also discuss the end of her probation, there’s some talk about whether she’s actually an alcoholic (he says it’s fine for her to have one [1] glass of wine, and if she can’t handle that she shouldn’t have any), and his burgeoning comedy career.

Yes, that’s correct, dear reader, Jacques the French wine guy has now decided that he is a stand-up comic. And for some reason, The Countess is co-hosting a comedy show with some podcaster at which Jacques will perform and you can be damned sure that she’s making all of us sit through it.

And then she plays “Feelin’ Jovani” for Jacques, who, God bless him, asks, “Who is Jovani?”

Over on the Upper East side, Dorinda is wandering around her old neighborhood, stalking the former townhome she lived in with Richard and reminiscing about all of the Very Important People they hosted. She then swings by the local Italian restaurant they used to frequent,  where she meets with Ramona, Sonja, and that Elyse woman they keep trying to make happen.

Ramona reminds us that Dorinda has seemed … off … recently. Ramona ties Dorinda’s moodiness to the renovation of Blue Stone Manor, noting that she’s been talking about her dead husband non-stop. But he’s not the topic of conversation at lunch. Instead, they discuss the stupid liquid fast that Sonja is on because she’s feeling fat after her fashion show; the fact that she managed to diffuse the tension between herself and Leah at said fashion show; and how Leah encouraged Dorinda to try to work her shit out with Tinsley.

They also broach the topic of The Countess and whether she’s drinking again, to which Ramona explains that from what she understands, The Countess is taking it “day-by-day” and adds that expecting her to have a long-term sobriety plan is just a recipe for failure.

And then somehow we’re talking about Dorinda’s boobs, how Ramona saw them, and how they turned her on. Please do not make me think about Dorinda’s boobs or Ramona getting aroused ever again, PLEASE AND THANK YOU.

Elsewhere, Tinsley and Mother are having dinner, where Tinsley informs her mother that she’s broken up with that Chicago guy, Bruce, before we even had a chance to meet and make fun of him. Mother shrugs that Tinsley’s not a Chicago girl, and Tinsley’s like, “Yeah, except I think I was dating Bruce because he was from Chicago and maybe, secretly, but not-so-secretly, I was hoping to run into Scott? I AM BROKEN AND NEED A LOT OF THERAPY.” Mother then adds, “Also, what does a man who has already been married and has kids want with a 44-year-old childless dingdong?”


Tinsley and Mother also discuss Tinsley’s recent runway appearance and how it inspired Tinsley to not take any shit from the other women anymore? I’m not certain how we got from Point A to Point B, but sure.

But rest assured, Tinsley will continue to take shit from Mother who then berates her for not having a baby and not doing enough to have a baby. Jesus, lady, back off already.

Over in Sonjaland, she goes to Englewood, New Jersey to do business things with the business person running her “fashion line” Sonja by Sonja Morgan. The bottom line is: NO $$$. “Did the fashion show improve sales?” Sonja, the stupidest person on earth asks, and Business Man is like, “It was a week ago, Sonja, and 30 of your friends were in attendance. Of course it didn’t improve sales.”

But don’t worry! They have a plan: Century 21 (not the realtors; a New York City discount department store) is interested in buying the WHOLE LINE! What could go wrong?

And then Leah takes a call with her Baby Daddy, Rob, who I am half-convinced she is still in love with. Again, we hear about their unconventional relationship, and how they are a family for their daughter, they just don’t live together. Leah tries to get him to admit he’s seeing someone new, but he won’t cop to it, and then she whines about how lonely she is.



Rob asks her if she’s spoken to her mother yet after her mother gave her the silent treatment after finding out Leah is drinking again, and Leah’s like “GET OFF MY BACK.”


Then it’s time for this big “comedy” show. The Countess arrives at the venue wearing a sparkly bomber jacket with — oh Jesus Christ — “Feelin’ Jovani!” ironed-on the back. But I’m going to just put that aside because this event is raising money for two good causes: STOMP Out Bullying, which is exactly what it sounds like, and The Fortune Society, an organization that helps previously incarcerated people rebuild their lives.


Jacques is walked through how he will be introduced on stage and is told that The Countess will blah blah blah, and then say, “I want to set the record straight: I did NOT fuck the pirate. And now here’s Jacques!”


Jacques turns a peculiar shade of vert, and clearly does not think the moment he was cuckolded on national television is particularly funny or should be brought back up again, but The Countess insists it’s funny because she DIDN’T fuck the pirate — if she had fucked the pirate would she joke about it? LOGIC.

Making their way to the venue, Ramona and Leah share a ride to Chelsea where Ramona asks Leah if she called her mother to try to mend things. Leah tells her that she texted her mother, but that she hasn’t heard back and Ramona is like, “Well no shit, she’s not going to respond to a text. I told you that you need to go see her in person.” And considering Ramona is closer in age to Leah’s mom than she is to Leah, she’s probably can get inside Leah’s mom’s head.

Leah reveals that she’s angry that her mother is judging her against her failures instead of her many successes, but Ramona is like, “Listen, you might not like what your mother has to say, but you have to suck it up and listen because she’s your mom. Buy her a bouquet of her favorite flowers, go visit her, say you’re sorry you disappointed her, and see what she has to say in return.”

And look. Ramona is not entirely wrong about Leah’s approach here, but only because Leah wants to reconnect with her mother and her relationship with her mom is not (or at least does not appear to be) toxic. But for people who have abusive, toxic, or otherwise unhealthy relationships with their parents or other relatives, please do not take Ramona’s advice: you don’t owe your abuser flowers and you do not owe them the satisfaction of an apology if you, like Leah in this situation, have done nothing wrong.

The women, along with Dorinda, Tinsley, and Sonja (and that Elyse woman) arrive at the venue, and Dorinda immediately suggests to Tinsley and Leah that the three of them have lunch together. The idea is that Dorinda and Tinsley can discuss their issues with each other, with a “voice of reason” keeping them company and mediating any disputes. Interestingly, Tinsley thinks this is a terrible idea, insisting that she doesn’t need or want someone else there.

The group, including Jacques and The Countess, have a seat before the show starts, and Jacques asks the women if they’ve ever bullied anyone.

Nope! Says Ramona.

Nope! Says Dorinda.

Yep! These women are just “leading by example” and “preaching peace and harmony” to quote another woman from a different reality show I recap.

And then the conversation turns to a more … delicate topic: The Countess’ drinking. When asked, The Countess says she has not yet had a drink since her probation ended five minutes ago, and she’s taking it day by day. Dorinda insists that The Countess is not an alcoholic, she was just pushed over the edge by Tom the Cheater, and if she decides to have a drink, she can have a drink.

The Countess is clearly conflicted: on the one hand, she doesn’t want to give Tom the Cheater that much power over her life, but on the other hand, Dorinda is giving her permission to drink again, sooooo …

The Countess reaches for what appears to be a glass of water, but before it reaches her mouth, Ramona grabs at it, and warns that no! it’s vodka!

And then this happened:

The Countess shrugs that it’s just a sip, and Dorinda slides right into the role of enabler: it doesn’t matter! she’s not on probation anymore! who cares? But that Elyse woman is like, “Ok, but are you still in AA?” The Countess declines to answer the question, and Dorinda is like, YOU ARE NOT HER JUDGE AND JURY BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT OFFICIALLY A MEMBER OF THIS CAST SO BUTT OUT.

The Countess then goes to the stage to co-host this thing and shoves “Feelin’ Jovani” in our face again because can’t get enough of that. After all, “it feels so good.” She calls attention to the organizations they are raising money for, and then reads a page out of her “diary,” which is about drinking on Easter and now she has to blow into a device five times a day to check her alcohol levels, six times if you count her boyfriend.

She then delivers her pirate “joke … ”

… which brings Sonja to her feet because YES SHE DID FUCK THAT PIRATE. AND WE ALLLLLLLL SAW IT.


Jacques, bless his French heart, tries to make the best of it by making a joke about hearing that the pirate couldn’t “raise his flag,” before going on to deliver a painfully not funny set that includes “jokes” about his name being pronounced “jackass” and the other jokes being completely incomprehensible to the audience thanks to his thick accent.

The rest of the standup is not much better and the less said about it, the less these poor brave souls are humiliated. It’s so painful, it sends Ramona and Sonja fleeing into the bathroom, they can’t handle the awkwardness of it all.

The show finally ends with an appropriately awkward dance party to, yes, “Feelin’ Jovani,”

And then soon the women are taking the giant adult-sized slide that this space features to the bar in the basement. Things COVID-19 has killed: the adult-sized slide in this Chelsea party space. R.I.P. Instagram gimmick.

Once in the bar area, Tinsley reveals to the women that she’s broken up with this Bruce enigma, and Ramona, for one, is very proud.

And while we’re on the topic of Tinsley, we return to this issue of the lunch with Dorinda and Leah. Dorinda senses that Tinsley is apprehensive, and Leah is like, “Yeah, because you’re intimidating.” And she is! Dorinda is intimidating! But as someone who is married to a man who is 6’5″, is a professional debater, and is intimidating as fuck to those who don’t know him, but who if told he is intimidating (which he is, often) denies he’s intimidating … I knew exactly what was coming next: “NUH-UH.”

Dorinda tattles to Tinsley that Leah said she thinks Tinsley doesn’t want to do the lunch because she finds Dorinda intimidating. But Tinsley insists that she’s doesn’t, she just doesn’t think Leah needs to be there to mediate. Dorinda then goes on the offense, arguing that she can do nothing right in Tinsley’s eyes, but Tinsley’s point is that she is tired of people talking for her — she’s a GODDAMNED 40+-YEAR-OLD-WOMAN, SHE DOESN’T NEED TO HAVE ANYONE ELSE TALK FOR HER.

Tell that to Mother.

Dorinda, insulted, announces that she’s leaving because if she gets mad, she’ll get super mad, and if she gets super mad, she could get “sued.”

Jesus, Dorinda, how mad do you plan on becoming?

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The Real Housewives of New York airs on Bravo.

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