‘The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’: Poking the Bear

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
“Until We Leave Again”
July 8, 2020

HI! So if you were looking for a recap of the most recent episodes of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, I regret to inform you this ain’t that. Instead, I’m trying to catch up with the remaining episodes of last season before I get to this new season that is currently airing and I AM SORRY BUT I WAS IN A PANDEMIC AND MY BRAIN WAS BROKEN AND I COULD NOT DO THIS IN REAL TIME. But hey, I’m caught up with New York (for the time being) so if you’re looking for up-to-date recaps, I’ve got you covered over there! Thanks for your patience!

We begin this episode where we left off (almost two months ago, shut up, I know), with Denise and Aaron storming out of Kyle’s backyard barbecue in a huff after Aaron was super aggressive with the other housewives. Kyle and Dorit trail after them, sort of encouraging them to come back and not leave, but once they’re outside of Kyle’s gate, Kyle and Dorit essentially throw up their hands and say, “oh well, too bad.”

Rinna, who is ostensibly one of Denise’s good friends, decides she’ll try to convince them to come back to the party at which they had never had any intention to stay, and follows them out to the street. Rinna asks Denise if she’s OK, but Denise is like, “OH, I’LL DEAL WITH YOU LATER. YOU AND I ARE GOING TO HAVE A PRIVATE CONVERSATION ABOUT ALLLLL THIS, TRUST.”

Rinna continues to try to encourage Denise and Aaron to return to the barbecue, while Aaron calls the driver from earlier to come pick them up and Denise screams at Rinna — and I shit you negative about this — that “AARON DEALS WITH PEOPLE DYING WITH CANCER, HE SHOULDN’T HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS STUPID LADY SHIT.”

And then! We cut to earlier footage from Aaron’s Garage o’ Quackery where Denise shoves her hand into some geegaw that is supposed to heat the skin without burning it, as evidence of Aaron’s big-pharma-destroying, cancer-curing prowess that might just one day get them driven off a cliff by all the mysterious cars that are following them.

Honest to God, I can’t decide if I think this is the funniest Real Housewives plotline I’ve ever seen, or if we shouldn’t call some authorities and make sure Sam, Lola, and Eloise are OK. Either way, it’s fully insane.

In the end, Denise and Aaron tell Rinna they are not returning to the barbecue because they are going to go get a steak at a strip club and Rinna is, understandably like, “excuse me, what now?”

They leave, and Rinna returns to the other women who have retreated to the traditional Beverly Hills barbecue tent to do shots and dance on the interior tent pole that is absolutely not designed to bear the weight of several drunk middle-aged ladies.

Later, we join Teddi and her family as they have a prenatal baby check; Garcelle and her assistants pack up her house and drink mimosas; Rinna swings by Sutton’s boutique and tries on a dress; Aaron teaches Sami how to drive his giant not-at-all-compensating-for-something pickup truck; and Dorit designs her closet. It is all exactly as interesting as it sounds.

Elsewhere, Kyle takes her sister Kim to an appointment at a plastic surgeon’s office: one of Kim’s implants has deflated, so they are planning on removing and replacing both. Kim had a lumpectomy years earlier, and between that and their mother’s history with breast cancer, the doctors promise that they will make sure her breast tissue looks healthy, and if they find anything suspicious, they’ll send it out for a biopsy.

The surgery takes place some days later, and despite Kyle sobbing through an interview about her mother’s cancer, Kim is fine, everything is totally fine. And I am not judging Kyle’s grief or fear or anxiety, and this is just a very gentle suggestion, but maybe Kyle should look into finding a good therapist and working all of this out in their office instead of in interviews with a national audience?

Also at a plastic surgeon’s office — but for very different reasons — are Rinna and Erika. They are there to strap a contraction-inducing machine to their abs and ass to ostensibly tone the muscles there, and talk a bit about Erika’s upcoming Broadway role in Chicago. The former Roxie delivers a very sincere speech to the future Roxie about a monologue she will have that is about fame and the need for the audience’s adoration and how when you think about it, they really are Roxies, all the while her ass is being shocked by a robot. It’s patently absurd, all of it, but also one of the best metaphors for these shows I’ve ever seen.

Garcelle finally moves into her new home which — AND I KNOW THIS IS NOT NICE, BUT IT IS TRUE — appears to be built in Sudden Valley.

The only two things that are of any interest from this segment are:

1. Garcelle opens up about how her father left when she was three. When she was an adult, and he learned he was dying, he wrote her a letter and sent it to her mother to give to her, but her mother “lost” it, and Garcelle will never know what he had to say or if he was proud of her. Uncool, Mom.

2. Garcelle has a date.

The final event of the episode is a trunk show at Sutton’s boutique, some Italians have some jewelry or something, which mostly gives Dorit a chance to show off her Italian. It turns out when she was finishing “university,” as she puts it, she met an Italian — Antonio — who offered her a job in Italy. She accepted it thinking it would be six months, but 10 years and one broken engagement later, Dorit moves to New York where she meets her Insufferable Husband and the rest is history.


Teddi arrives at the trunk show wearing a mess of a maternity wrap dress, and Sutton sneers in an interview that she needs to offer to help Teddi with her “style choices.” Good luck! Better women have tried and failed!

Kyle and Erika are also there, and Sutton explains that Rinna won’t be joining them because she’s in New York and Garcelle is still moving into her new house, but Denise is planning to attend. This fills the women with anxiety and dread as they haven’t seen Denise since she stomped out of Kyle’s barbecue, outraged that her cancer-curing husband had to be so rude to them.

And soon Denise arrives, with Aaron — or as Kyle calls him, “her watchdog” — in tow, despite the fact that none of the other husbands are in attendance. As they walk in, Aaron notes the address of the boutique: “636 … 9 … 6” before saying to himself that the numerology is good. The nonsense with this man has no bounds!

So, Denise and Aaron go inside and greet Sutton and spend a long time complimenting her boutique to put off joining the rest of the women. But they can’t put off the inevitable, and as soon as they greet the other women, Kyle is like, “Hey, it was super uncool when you ran away from my barbecue the other night.” But Denise hisses back that Kyle left her party, too, so fair is fair before announcing that she’s off to the bathroom.

After a long tense silence, Kyle tells Aaron that she still feels weird about them leaving the barbecue, but she can wait until Denise returns to discuss it with her. But the other women are not interested in waiting for Denise to return, because Aaron was an asshole to the women in his own right, and they have PLENTY to say to his dumb meat face. Erika points out that he really let them have it and basically called them bad people. Aaron is all, “I didn’t call you bad people … I just observe.”

Erika adds that he talked down to them and asked if they can look at themselves in the mirror, which, you know, is shitty. Aaron asks again if she can look at herself, and when she says “actually, yes,” he snippily replies “well, great, then you’ve solved that problem.” THIS GUY RIGHT HERE.

Teddi adds that he was belittling and Erika goes on to tell him that he was mansplaining, but this asshole HONEST TO GOD! MANSPLAINS that actually, he’s just “direct.”

Aaron demands to know why “we are nitpicking on people?” Teddi is all, “well, if you’re going to take the moral high ground,” to which Aaron is all, “O RLY? WE’RE GOING TO TALK ABOUT THE ‘MORAL HIGH GROUND? WE’RE GOING TO GO THERE?” just as Denise returns to the table.

Aaron declares that he is DONE with this CONVERSATION, and then angrily warns Erika that she “keeps poking the bear.”

And y’all. I’m not accusing Aaron of anything, I’m just saying that men who tell women that they are “poking the bear” or otherwise suggest that they are antagonizing them and that there will be consequences for doing so? They are not good men. They are dangerous men who are looking to justify their behavior and blame someone else when they lose control and act out.

And Denise?


Kyle tries to say that this whole mess has turned into something much bigger than it should be, especially since Denise is all upset, but Denise, calmly, claims she’s not upset at all. “Then why did you call me names?” Teddi asks, which: fair question! Denise acts like she has no idea what Teddi is even talking about and Aaron starts yapping, to the point where Teddi has to ask him to butt the fuck out. With that, Denise is like, “WE’RE OUTTA HERE. AGAIN.”

They start making their way out to the valet with Dorit chasing behind, trying, again, to convince them to stay. Denise keeps saying she’s not upset and she insists doesn’t want to make a scene WHILE SHE IS MAKING A SCENE.

Dorit tries to explain why the other women are upset, that every time they try to discuss the situation, Denise shuts it down. But Denise is incredulous: there’s nothing left to say, so why do they keep bringing it up? And it really is something of an ouroboros: the women are upset that Denise keeps shutting down the conversation about her kids and what happened at her party, and every time they try to bring it up, she shuts it down again, which just upsets them more. 

The snake, it eats its tail.

It all comes back around.

Dorit adds that she understands Aaron’s urge to protect Denise, her Insufferable Husband did the same thing in her first season, but it did not go well for him, and Aaron would do well to learn from Dorit’s Insufferable Husband.

Denise insists one last time that it’s simple: she’s over it; they aren’t, and now that’s cleared up, she and Aaron are going to leave because there’s just too much paparazzi around.

There are no paparazzi there.

Inside, the women wonder what to do with Denise: they can’t talk about anything with her, so are they supposed to just be dishonest and pretend nothing is wrong? Or should they ice her out altogether?

~commence disappointed head-shaking~

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs on Bravo.

One thought on “‘The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’: Poking the Bear

  1. It doesn’t matter it’s a bit behind.
    Your writing is brilliant…
    Can’t wait for your take on the next season.
    Poor Erika?!? A mess…not so pretty.

Leave a Reply