Real Housewives of Orange County Recap – 10/17/16

As they trudge around the city, Meghan and Kelly look nothing short of f*cking asinine as they accost every person they see to find out if any of the people trying to avoid them have the last name O’Toole. Yes, they’re basically cold-calling people on a street and Kelly apparently decided to dress like Bonnie Parker for the event and they’re achieving just about nothing in this producer-driven endeavor. Meanwhile, the others arrive at a lovely farm and are promptly informed that they will be helping to milk some cows. Obviously – because she’s the f*cking worst – Vicki immediately begins shrieking at the sight of cow sh*t and then the entire group dons Ghostbuster-looking suits to ready themselves for the milking. When it’s Vicki’s turn to milk the cow (who I’m just gonna go ahead and call Brooks), the cow tries to kick her. I’m going to need to take a second now so I can quickly browse online for a gift to send Brooks the Cow because I really appreciate his effort. Do cows like those Harry & David pears you’re supposed to eat with a spoon?

Also: Meghan maybe-sort-of-could-have found someone she’s slightly related to after a day of harassing strangers on the street.

Also: Tamra knows the only thing that will get her through being near Kelly at this point is Jesus and I really hope he’s not too busy combatting famine and genocide to help out an Orange County Real Housewife because things could get ugly on the farm.

Also: Vicki’s wants her nipples to be “where they should be” and she declares her vagina to be beautiful.

Also: I am positive I can see a swarm of locusts riding a fleet of frogs somewhere near the horizon.

Arriving at the farm, Kelly feels uncomfortable. Meghan informed her earlier in the day that she should immediately apologize for saying such a terrible thing to Tamra, but as Kelly herself is a terrible thing, she is thereby not fully able to follow normal advice. She sits quietly for a while, fully believing the rest of the women are part of a hateful clique that’s targeting her for no reason at all, but then – like a ray of sunshine beaming through the clouds – a teensy bit of humility overtakes her and she announces to the table at large how sorry she is for saying such awful things about Tamra. “It was just something that came out of my mouth,” Kelly attempts to explain while Heather mumbles safe words to herself to keep her head from flying off. See, Heather has heard this pathetic excuse from Kelly before. We have all heard her apologize for hissing nasty words out of anger and, frankly, I don’t see how it’s possible for anyone to believe things will be any different going forward. This is a very sick human being gracing our TV screens and unless her husband locks her in a dungeon, I have no doubt she will be back to cause even more trouble next season. As for how Tamra took Kelly’s apology, well, she sort of didn’t. Her eyes flooded with tears, Tamra simply nodded as Kelly rhapsodized about what an excellent mother Tamra is, but when Kelly walked over later to thank Tamra for being so forgiving, Tamra coldly and evenly replied that she is not talking about this matter right now. A bullsh*t apology by a monster in a beret is sometimes just not enough.

Once they arrive back at the hotel, Meghan stops by Tamra’s room so she can try to convince her to forgive Kelly, but Tamra is way too angry to even entertain such a notion. Kelly Dodd, after all, is the one person walking this f*cking planet who causes Tamra to question the Lord’s teachings and all Tamra can do to get through it is try to stay as far away from Kelly and her sharp teeth as is humanly possible. The rest of them are not so lucky. Heather knows she can deal with Kelly’s presence by treating her like she’s nothing but generic air and that’s her mindset as she, Shannon, Vicki, and Kelly hop on some bikes to tour the bucolic countryside. The gorgeousness of the vista is immediately compromised by Vicki’s incessant posing and shrieking, but I suppose she could be doing it all while topless, so look at that – I found me an upside to this bullsh*t.

The group eventually bikes to some glorious castle and they spread out on a blanket for a picnic. Kelly waves away the alcohol she’s offered because wringing out her liver in the hotel sink that morning wasn’t as effective as she had hoped. Still, everyone is somewhat optimistic that their last dinner in Ireland will be calm and enjoyable and that of course means that the meal will be a Technicolor nightmare. There’s no way Tamra is going to get through a meal with Kelly without lunging at her and even Heather might grip a steak knife really tightly in her hands for a second because she’s already grossed out by what Kelly said about Tamra’s custody issues – and that sh*t is nothing compared to the shirt she saw Kelly wearing while she played croquet. White, filmy, and far too complicated in its detailing, Kelly’s shirt looks like the kind of item Luann’s pirate would have tossed on right before he asked the Countess to pay him his regular fee for his services. I mean, that shirt is not the ugliest thing about Kelly. It’s clearly her personality that is her single most awful quality, but that shirt did her no favors.

Arriving at the dinner Tamra has already coined “Kelly’s Funeral,” Shannon suggests the group order some alcohol, but Kelly announces she will not be drinking. No, she’s too hurt that Vicki didn’t stand up for her when everyone else attacked her just for bringing up the fact that Tamra’s daughter wants nothing to do with the woman who birthed her. But Shannon clearly doesn’t care all that much about Kelly’s wants or needs and she goes ahead and orders some tequila for her. Maybe Shannon thought the alcohol racing through her bloodstream might cause Kelly to loosen up. Maybe she secretly hatched a plan to poison Kelly’s tequila with cyanide. I really have no idea about Shannon’s motivation on this one, but Vicki thinks she knows what’s going on and I seriously hate to say this: I think Vicki might be right. See, Vicki believes that Shannon is trying to get some booze into a lunatic’s body so the monster will be unleashed and she’s pretty sure Tamra is behind this evil plan, but Kelly is the kind of all-knowing seer who understands everything that’s happening around her. She believes these women are setting up an ambush, but rather than get up and go back to her room and order room service and some light porn, Kelly stays put and readies herself for the next war.

Now listen, I figured there would eventually be a few causalities, but I did not expect to see text pop onscreen that indicated something massive happened five hours earlier without a camera crew recording the crazy. We almost never – and I mean never – hear a producer’s probing questions on this franchise, but the last segment begins with a producer asking Meghan about what happened after dinner. Seems Vicki and Kelly knocked on Tamra’s door during the night. They were trying to get Tamra to go out drinking with them, an invitation Tamra declined by not answering the door. And that’s when things get a bit confusing. Shannon apparently came down the hall and demanded to know what Kelly was doing and Kelly somehow made the choice to go back to her room and go to sleep. With her gone, Heather, Tamra, and Shannon headed out to get a drink and they sent texts to Vicki that she should come join them so long as she left the unbalanced one back in the hotel room. As she has no loyalty to anything or anyone, Vicki ditched her new best friend and hustled her way downstairs. Firmly reunited with Tamra, Vicki then whispered into her soul-sister’s ear all of the dastardly things Kelly has said about Tamra, to which Tamra responded by snapping a picture of herself wrapped around Kelly’s Life Coach that she then sent Kelly’s way, along with a lengthy text that informed Kelly that Vicki had told Tamra everything.

It’s hard to believe things escalated after that text was sent and the women were stuffed with alcohol, right? But escalate they did and Heather captured the entire thing on her phone. Kelly cried in a hallway and denied and then denied again saying anything terrible about Tamra and eventually all of the women and their resentments and their imminent hangovers boarded the shuttle to return to the airport. But if you believed Kelly would just sit quietly in that van and fantasize about being a different person, you would be very incorrect. Instead, Kelly mumbles that she has never done anything to anybody and then she turns around and stares at Shannon and calls her “a drunk.” (Um, pot filled with cheap grain punch and desperation and tears? You’re black.) Then she continues by demanding that Shannon shut her mouth – and just because she’s not shown herself to be despicable enough, she follows up with a comment about Shannon having hairs sprouting from her chin. The whole thing is captured with the scuzzy tint of night vision and it ends when Heather sort of scoffs and announces that Kelly is nothing but trash.

Do I think these women were trying to bait Kelly? Probably. But to loosely paraphrase our next President, perhaps someone so easily baited should not live such a public life. The woman needs to get off of reality television for the sake of her sanity and she needs to do it immediately. And if she finds that she’s bored after quitting this show, perhaps she can go play basketball at Duke.

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.

2 thoughts on “Real Housewives of Orange County Recap – 10/17/16

  1. I don’t know where the fun, unbiased writer went, but I wish she would come back. Your love for Heather is bizarre and misplaced. She’s just as vile as most of them (we all know you’re right about VG being the worst), but with more money. She’s a hypocrite to the enth degree. She’s besties with TJ, the trashiest of them all, and we’re led to believe she’s so offended by Kelly’s language. Give me a break.

    We all know Heather never likes the newbies. She thinks this is her show and keeps trying to get a friend (or friends) on. If you think I’m making it up, the producers talked about it as did she in some RHOC special.

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