The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
“Sex, Lies, and Text Messages”
August 19, 2020
The ladies are back in Beverly Hills and up to their typical Beverly Hills nonsense: taking surfboard exercise classes with the daughter who is struggling with an eating disorder; decorating their nursery in their Malibu mansion; being surrounded by their expensive glam squad while watching a preview trailer for their upcoming Broadway show … you know, typical lady stuff.
We then head to Garcelle’s house where Denise pops in for a visit and to collect their thoughts on what happened in Rome. Denise thanks Garcelle for everything she did for her on the trip and Garcelle insists she was just Denise’s friend. Denise is like, “AND THAT SAYS IT ALL.”
Garcelle asks if she told Aaron about what happened in Rome and Denise confirms she did. According to Denise, he was shocked at what the women accused her of and she insists that she and her husband don’t have secrets between them. “If I came home and said I had slept with Brandi, he’d want to know why he wasn’t invited.”
Garcelle asks if Aaron plans on addressing it with the women the next time he sees them and Denise assures her that he will. Because getting Aaron involved has always been just a very good idea.
Denise insists that she can move on, but who knows if the rest of the women will be able to?
Denise admits to just not liking Teddi, and then asks Garcelle if everything is good between her and Rinna. Garcelle explains that she’s known Rinna for 20 years, and that Rinna is different now: harsher, relentless. Denise agrees and adds that it’s going to take a lot of time before she trusts Rinna again.
Garcelle praises Denise for her “fierceness” on the last night in Rome, and Denise sighs that she was just being honest. She’s been through a lot (CHARLIE SHEEN), so, yeah, she can handle a couple of Housewives.
OK, but can she? Because it kinda doesn’t feel like she can.
Over at Rinna’s house, she’s sorta helping Amelia pack, as her daughter is moving into her own apartment that will only cost $5,700 a month. And I’m not kidding: for that much, if you put down 10%, you could be paying the mortgage on a $1 million house. (I mean, minus taxes and insurance and BLAH BLAH BLAH don’t get pedantic). Perfectly normal rent for a 19-year-old woman.
Amelia tells her mother a little about how her therapy is going and says that her antidepressants are helping her feel more balanced now. Rinna brings up that Garcelle questioned whether or not Rinna’s posts on Instagram had anything to do with Amelia’s eating disorder, and Amelia says that if she had the opportunity, she would tell Garcelle “in the nicest way possible to fuck off. With all due respect.” Amelia admits that in the past, she did have some anger at her mother for being so thin, and blamed her, but that as she’s matured, she’s come to realize that Rinna is just a very small person and that it’s not her fault. Everything Amelia did, she did to herself. Rinna applauds her daughter for
letting her off the hook being “smarter than anyone [she] knows.”
Ahhh, Dorit’s Bucca di Beppo room that she “decorated” all by herself. It’s complete, and … it’s … just a bunch of fake lemons hanging from the ceiling? There are a lot of lemons. So many lemons.
I mean, granted, it doesn’t look like a typical Buca di Beppo room, but having recently been to PUMP, no one is going to mistake it for a Lisa Vanderpump venture, trust.
— Lee Radziwill (@RadziwillLee) July 30, 2020
Kyle arrives at Buca di Beppo to help Dorit prepare for Teddi’s baby shower — which, again, is being held in the BACKROOM OF A BUCA DI BEPPO —
and she gets her first look at Dorit’s “Capri Room.”
“OMG, THIS IS FANTASTIC! IT REALLY DOES FEEL LIKE WE’RE IN CAPRI!” Kyle lies right to Dorit’s face.
They choose place settings for everyone: placing Teddi in the center, Kyle next to her, Dorit across the table, with Denise next to her, and Garcelle on the other side of Denise to make her more comfortable.
It is adorable that Dorit thinks Denise is going to show up to this thing. So sweet. And Kyle says as much, but Dorit insists that Denise IS coming: she didn’t specifically say she’s NOT coming. Which, of course, is not the same thing as confirming that she is coming.
Kyle confirms with Dorit that she knows Kim and Brandi are coming: Teddi herself invited them when they delivered that whole bombshell at Kyle’s house before the Rome trip. So maybe it’s for the best that Denise does not show up? Maybe someone should take this opportunity to text Denise ~cough Dorit cough~ and warn her this time around that she’s about to be ambushed?
HAHAHAHAHAHAHA AS IF.
At some later point, it’s baby shower time, and a bunch of Teddi’s friends we don’t know arrive, followed by Kim and Rinna — who, yes, brought a bunny.
Rinna goes on to say that ironically, Kim spent Thanksgiving with her daughter Amelia. At the time of the filming, Amelia was dating Mercer Wiederhorn, the brother of Kim’s son-in-law, Thayer, prompting Rinna to fantasize about potentially one day being family with Kim.
Of course, it’s no more ironic and weird than Denise Richards being married to Rinna’s husband’s ex-wife’s ex-husband, because Beverly Hills is its own universe.
Garcelle soon arrives at Buca di Beppo bearing a giant flamingo which I guarantee will only serve to be an attractive nuisance for Teddi’s toddlers, who will be determined to climb on it, possibly send themselves to the hospital.
Garcelle arrives at almost the exact same time that Denise Facetimes Dorit to give her the completely expected “bad news”: she’s very ill, and won’t be able to make it to the shower.
She’s sure Teddi, the pregnant woman, and Erika, who is about to make her Broadway debut don’t want to be around a Very Sick Person, right?
Finally, Teddi and Kyle arrive at Buca di Beppo and after the big “SURPRISE!” moment, they make their way into the Capri Room.
the rhobh walking into that buca di beppo pic.twitter.com/kTfCcrHFKc
— christopher (@officialmsmojo) August 20, 2020
“So many … lemons!”
Teddi is impressed that Dorit helped organize this baby shower for her until she realizes that actually, it’s just an opportunity to get her Bucca di Beppo room on the show. The more things change and all that.
Dorit announces to the group that Denise won’t, in fact, be joining them because she’s very very sick and not because she hates all of them and has no intention of fulfilling her contract with the show don’t be silly.
Erika arrives in a purplish-pink wig, announcing that she’s “wearing the baby’s gender on [her] head” and now she’s canceled in Florida, R.I.P.
The shower gets underway, and as Rinna explains, the Housewives, they’re a good time at a baby shower:
Lisa Rinna and all the housewives at Andy Cohen’s baby shower. My jaw literally dropped …. pic.twitter.com/iCPDbFh2UF
— Real Housewives Enthusiast (@ulthousewives) September 28, 2021
Unfortunately — or fortunately, depending on your perspective — no table dancing ensues at Teddi’s shower.
At one point, Rinna toasts Erika, pointing out that the next time they see her, she’ll be on the stage playing Roxy in Chicago. Rinna adds that she’s so excited for Erika to do something she herself loved doing.
Garcelle notes that she’s known Rinna for 20 years, and she knows what a supportive friend she is. That said, she thinks it’s interesting that every time Erika’s Chicago gig is mentioned, Rinna feels the need to chime in that she did it 18 years ago.
Rinna sighs that she feels sad for Garcelle that she thinks that, and that she knows Garcelle knows her better than that. In fact, Rinna insists, this is about Garcelle, and has nothing to do with all the times that Rinna reminded everyone that she did Chicago first this season. Which are many.
my therapist: lisa rinna as roxie hart in Chicago isn't real
lisa rinna as roxie hart in Chicago: pic.twitter.com/EERlsAfeZD
— the people's girlfriend (@weirdqueer) April 17, 2019
To cut the tension, Teddi asks Erika for a preview performance, but she refuses. And with that, Garcelle and Sutton announce that they have to go before anyone climbs on the tables and starts belting out “All That Jazz.” On her way out the door, Garcelle apologizes to Rinna, admitting that it was a “shitty” thing to say. (But not inaccurate.)
Conveniently, Garcelle and Sutton appear to leave right before Kim receives a text from Brandi asking if she can stop by. Kyle tells her that she is welcome: Teddi did invite her herself, after all.
Erika, who arrived late, asks where Denise is and Kyle and Teddi are like “she’s ‘sick.'” Teddi notes that she would have had more respect for Denise had she just been honest and said that she feels awkward around Teddi and didn’t want to come. Kyle adds that this is at the root of the problem with Denise: she’s not honest to their faces. Dorit wonders how they know Denise is not honest, and Teddi nods towards Kim: she was there, too, when Brandi told them everything.
Dorit says to Kim that she knows she and Brandi are friends, and she’s not saying that she’s NOT credible, she just doesn’t know her, herself. Kyle points out that she’s never had a good relationship with Brandi, but she’s never known Brandi to be a liar.
That’s when Brandi saunters in and announces that she brings her boys to this Buca di Beppo all the time, and YEP. THAT CHECKS OUT. Kyle, out of character, tells Brandi that she’s a great mom, and Brandi reveals that she spent Thanksgiving with Eddie and LeAnn.
Well, just desert. But still! That’s … something! “Because you’re not the most …” Kyle begins, and Brandi readily agrees to whatever Kyle was attempting to imply.
Dorit asks if Brandi seeks out controversy, and she’s like, “I mean, I started out not wanting that …” Dorit then asks Brandi if honesty is important to her, and Brandi claims, “1000%. 1000% … 99% of the time,” before wondering what this is all about, as if she doesn’t already know.
Kyle informs her that shit hit the fan in Rome about Brandi’s “friendship” with Denise. Brandi tenses, and claims that she’s having major anxiety based on the way the women are treating her. Rinna explains that she’s uncomfortable talking about any of this without Denise being there. Brandi, looking down the table at Teddi’s friends, whom none of us know, wonders if this is the best time and place to have this conversation, and Teddi’s friends are like, “OH, WAIT, YOU DON’T WANT TO FILM THIS SCENE WITH US HERE, OK, WE’LL GO” and make their way out of the restaurant in one of the funniest, most awkward moments involving real people on one of these shows to date.
Y’all should really go.
Once the civilians have left, Teddi explains to Brandi that on their first night in Rome, they confronted Denise about the things she said about Teddi and Erika. Denise immediately began distancing herself from Brandi, claiming that she sensed Brandi was trouble, that she barely knew her, she only met her twice, and that they were never close.
Dorit adds that Denise claimed that nothing Brandi claimed she said was true, and Rinna and Erika add that Denise called her a liar.
And I NEVER comment on the interstitials, but LOOK AT THIS IS:
This will never stop being hilarious.
Back at the baby shower, Brandi is visibly upset at being called a liar by Denise, and insists that she’s not trying to hurt her.
Brandi begins telling her version of the story: in April she went to visit Denise on set to do the podcast and Denise invited her to another set. Teddi interrupts to ask if Aaron was there, and Brandi claims he wasn’t. Except that Denise told the women he was …
Brandi goes on to explain that she understood that Denise and Aaron had an open thing as long as it was with other girls. So they start making out, and Brandi bit her, leaving marks. The next day, Denise freaked out about the bite marks, saying that Aaron could never find out and that she would tell him that it was from a corset on the set of her movie.
Dorit has a confused. So which was it? Aaron was cool with Denise having sex with other women? Or he would be angry if he found out Denise had hooked up with Brandi?
Teddi tries to help explain that this is Brandi’s point: this was the moment she realized she had been lied to by Denise about the nature of her relationship with Aaron. Brandi adds that it was this moment when she understood she was being asked to keep this secret, and more heartbreaking for her, that she was a cheater. She hates cheaters! That’s her whole thing! She would never knowingly cheat with someone!
Dorit, again, has a confused.
Teddi tries to refocus: putting the sex stuff aside, let’s just look at the issue of their friendship. Which Denise claims is non-existent. According to Teddi’s theory, Denise reignited her relationship with Brandi recently to feed her information about this group so as to keep her close and prevent Brandi from revealing what happened between them back in April.
Erika is focused on Denise calling her an ice cold bitch, and Brandi claims that she can back all of this up through her text messages with Denise. Brandi pulls out her phone and hands it to Erika. As she scrolls through the phone, Erika notes that she’s not so interested in the content of the texts, but the sheer volume of them. There are pages and pages of messages between Denise and Brandi, which is curious considering Denise’s defense is that she barely knows her.
Dorit takes a look and dismisses the messages as not proving anything, and tells Brandi that she’s sorry, she just doesn’t believe her. Meanwhile, over Dorit’s shoulder, Erika is saying that she does believe Brandi, and Teddi points out that the messages clearly suggest that they had a relationship of some sort. Dorit continues to argue that Denise claimed they didn’t have a close relationship, and nothing in the text messages suggests they did.
To which Brandi, ever the lady, yells, “I FUCKING SUCKED ON HER CLITORIS. I HAVE A CLOSE FUCKING RELATIONSHIP WITH HER. ENOUGH SAID.”
The Housewives, the staff of Buca di Beppo, all of America:
Once everyone regains their composure, Rinna asks Brandi if she can see the text messages. In a testimonial, Rinna reads a few out loud. To be fair to Denise, the texts do not suggest that she and Brandi have had sex. To be fair to Brandi, there are a LOT of messages, and they definitely suggest that the two of them were close — telling each other that they love each other close. As Rinna points out, she doesn’t have this kind of texting relationship with Denise, and she’s known her for 20 years.
Brandi calls Denise a “people pleaser” and a “master manipulator even more than Lisa Vanderpump.”
The rest of the women:
Rinna urges Brandi to get together with Denise and figure this shit out, because now they’re all involved.
Sometime later, Erika packs up her shit, says goodbye to Tom, and heads to New York to go be on Broadway. As she explains in a testimonial, she left her home to go to New York thirty years ago only to become a go-go dancer in Jersey. She would watch private planes land in the field across the street, and now she is that girl on the private plane coming to star in a Broadway musical. If that isn’t full circle, Erika doesn’t know what is.
Enjoy it while you can, Momma!
Meanwhile, Rinna visits Kyle at her house to discuss the events at the baby shower the night before. Kyle asks Rinna what she thinks about all of this, and Rinna insists that she believed Denise in Rome, but now she finds Brandi very convincing. Rinna wants to defend Denise, but she no longer knows what to believe.
In a talking head, Kyle repeats that if Denise slept with Brandi, it’s none of their business. Buuuuuuut … Brandi told them this information, so what are they supposed to do, not repeat it on a nationally-broadcast cable series? Come on.
Rinna tells Kyle that she was deeply upset in Rome at the idea that she had failed Denise as a friend, but what if that was her plan all along? What if she always meant to weaponize their friendship and try to make Rinna feel guilty? What if Denise was manipulating her all along?
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs on Bravo.