Real Housewives of Orange County Recap – 9/26/16

Meghan, the woman who was paramount in bringing Brooks’ lies to light, has other things on her mind these days besides outing faux illnesses. She’s newly pregnant and her husband has recently discovered a newfound passion. No, that passion is not for his wife – he still can’t stand her – but he has developed a love of candles and now he and Meghan are opening a candle store so both of them can spend even more time away from home! Looks like Kelly and Meghan have some things in common when it comes to their spouses. While Meghan smells Jimmy’s latest wax creation, Kelly is at her house where she’s talking to her mother about the problems in her marriage. Her mother apparently stayed with her own husband for the sake of the children, but it’s not necessarily a choice she wants for her daughter. Seems Kelly’s nightmare of a husband was fond of threatening her during their separation, especially about stripping her of full custody. Even now, Kelly is terrified her daughter will choose to live with Michael should they actually divorce and she looks at Tamra’s loss of custody as a horrific cautionary tale. I don’t like Kelly and I do not believe her personal issues should color all of her human interactions the way they seem to, but I also can’t deny that I feel for her. Her husband appears vicious; I can understand just how vivid her fears are.

What I can’t really understand is Shannon’s fears about movers touching her stuff. Yeah, nobody loves the idea of strangers riffling through your things, but this woman’s got a humongous home to pack up and there’s a very good chance she’s going to lose her mind before she even gets to the craft room. Besides, leaving a home without electromagnetic waves is really hard for her. There were some wonderful times in that house, but there were also some devastating times, and it’s time now for the united family to move on and move away and start fresh in a home with an address Shannon should never ever share with her mother-in-law, who will absolutely stop by late one evening with a flaming bag filled with dogsh*t that she will drop on the doorstep, ring the bell, and run like the f*cking wind while giggling uncontrollably.

And now it’s time to get to the spa day that seems more like a horrible punishment than an afternoon of relaxation. It’s funny how such a lovely event can be so completely compromised because of the participants involved, don’t you think? Tamra arrives first and Vicki meets her soon after. Once she finds out Tamra will be drinking that afternoon, Vicki high-fives her because history has proven that Tamra likes Vicki way more when she’s wasted and can’t see straight. Vicki really wants everybody to get a quick lobotomy before their seaweed wraps so nobody brings up the disgraceful sins of her past, but there’s no time for that because they all need to wade into a mud bath first. While they rub sediment all over themselves, Tamra makes sure to announce what went down when they met Shannon’s mother-in-law and Vicki nods her head sagely and explains that Donna doesn’t like Shannon and really wishes her son had stayed with his mistress. “He was happier,” Vicki explains, and then she goes on to almost gloat, “It was a long time. It was almost a year.” Honestly? The joy in Vicki’s voice as she explains Shannon’s worst living nightmare is truly repulsive to watch. It’s maybe the worst thing I’ve seen on television in a really long time – but remember; I haven’t seen the debate yet. God bless my DVR.

Also: nothing besides reciting psalms while doing squats in Lucite heels makes Tamra happier than gossiping about her so-called friends and their deepest, darkest secrets and fears. I think if you do something terrible in life, you should be punished by having Tamra Judge become your new best friend.

Over at the fertility clinic, Meghan and Jim (he’s there!) listen to the heartbeat of their baby, but then they find out Meghan is not carrying twins. She feels a great sense of loss of the other embryo and Jim comforts her sweetly. It’s perhaps the greatest sentiment the guy’s ever shown and I’m actually relieved to report that it can probably be confirmed that the man’s got a soul.

At her new house, Shannon is surrounded by piles of boxes and heaps of stress. Still, she goes outside to her new gorgeous bluff of a backyard and takes a selfie she then sends to Tamra – you know, the woman who is spouting sh*t about her and her marriage at this very second. Back at the spa, the ladies are ready to get some massages and they are instructed to head into the massage huts in pairs. Vicki and Kelly head into one hut together – which means I’d rather be literally anywhere in the galaxy than inside that hut – and Vicki asks Kelly about her marriage and congratulates her for her recent ten year anniversary to the man Kelly has explicitly told her over and over she resents far more than she loves. So how is it going? Well, in ten years, Michael has never once given Kelly an anniversary gift. Making matters worse (which seems almost impossible), Kelly bought herself a purse and Michael decided another man must have purchased it for her. As a masseuse rubs her shoulders, Kelly begins to weep quietly as the woman she anointed her life coach explains that she needs to try to make this broken marriage work because a woman should always stay in a decaying relationship with a man who loathes her rather than ever have to face the indignity of ordering in take-out for one. That’s about the time Kelly informs Vicki that just last night, while her daughter had a friend over, Michael screamed that Kelly needed to shut up. Kelly knows this cycle she’s in is a horrible one and she knows her daughter may very well see this behavior as the kind she should accept one day from a man. That possibility is torturous for Kelly, but she’s still not sure she should leave – and her life coach implores her to fight to stay a wife to a horrible human specimen of a man. Watching this exchange is like watching the blind leading the blind, the idiot leading the moron, the psychotic leading the sociopathic. I could go on, but frankly, it’s too easy to make these jokes and it’s also too sad. On top of the rest of this sh*t mountain that is her existence, Kelly really needs to make some friends who aren’t f*cking imbeciles.

In the hut across the way, Tamra and Heather can hear Kelly crying as she regales Vicki with her latest tale of marital strife. “I don’t think Kelly’s very happy in her marriage,” states Tamra. See, now that they’re all finished discussing the misery that is Shannon’s life, Tamra needs someone else to talk about and Kelly’s making it nice and easy for her by choking back sobs in the next hut over. Tamra tells Heather that Kelly’s husband was diagnosed with a narcissist disorder and he threatened to take away their daughter. Meanwhile, back in the hut that is Crazy Land, Vicki again all but pleads with Kelly to stay with her verbally abusive husband because, take it from her: sleeping alone is just no fun. Okay, can someone at Bravo finally call an audible and drag Vicki Gunvalson off this show and plop her in a f*cking asylum? The woman is clinically batsh*t and her advice is downright dangerous. Who do I call? Human Resources? Legal? Anyone have Andy Cohen’s direct extension?

Once the massages and part one of Kelly’s emotional breakdown is complete, the ladies convene over lunch and drinks and Kelly once again bursts into tears about the hideousness that is her marriage. Tamra attempts to relate. She too used to be married to a verbally-violent douchebag so she can understand some of Kelly’s pain (not enough not to talk about her behind her back, of course, but empathy is empathy) and, as Kelly reveals even more of her pain and that even her mother recommends divorce, Vicki – that f*cking moron Kelly elected as her life coach – continues to shake her head in protest because she will go to her grave believing that it’s better to be emotionally mauled than be alone.

It’s time to impeach Vicki as life coach now, right? Don’t worry, she still has a wonderful future in front of her and I can see it now: Vicki Gunvalson for President, you guys! She’s clearly the person most qualified to rule the underworld. And don’t worry – Brooks will be there to spoon her until the wee hours so she will never have to sleep alone ever again.

Nell Kalter teaches Film and Media at a school in New York. She is the author of the books THAT YEAR and STUDENT, both available on in paperback and for your Kindle. Also be sure to check out her website at Her twitter is @nell_kalter.

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