Real Housewives of Orange County Recap, Season 17 Episode 12

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Hello and welcome to Orange County, California, a place where nothing makes sense anymore, people are accusing others of things they didn’t do, and others are denying that they did the things they absolutely did. What are we even fighting about anymore? We are fighting about vibez. Shannon doesn’t like Gina and Gina doesn’t like Shannon, and that is never going to change, so they’re just torturing each other but slowly turning up each other’s white noise machine while they’re not looking, and now the whole cast is trying to shout over the sounds of waves crashing or thunderstorms or frogs fucking in the jungle. Also, Heather and Shannon hate each other, so they’re vibing off of that, and Jenn has no idea where she fits in, so she’s trying to do what she thinks is right, but come on, since when has anyone ever prospered on this franchise through magnanimity.

The episode starts with Josh Altman and his wife, Heather Threaded Brows, show up at Terry and Heather Dubrow’s DSW that they turned into a domicile to tell them that the buyers just signed the papers so now they own the land-bound Death Star that the Dubrows have been living in for the past several years. Terry says, “$55 million is not fuck you money; it’s fuck everyone you ever knew money.” But is it? I mean, that’s a lot of money, but you factor in realtor fees, taxes, what may be left on a mortgage, if there is one, the amount they’re going to pay for a monthly lease on a house that big while they look for a new one, the cost of their next house which will surely be north of $20 million and the $17 million they just dropped on Roberto Cavalli’s garage and honestly there isn’t that much left. $155 million, that’s fuck you money. $550 million, that’s fuck everyone you ever knew money. $55 million? That’s “Sorry, excuse me, you dropped something” money.

Shannon meets up with Tamra and says, yes, they have the same fights about money, kids, sex, and commitment that most couples have and, “It is none of Heather Dubrow, Emily Simpson, or Gina Kirsche … Keernesh … Kirschenzester’s business.”

Okay, point taken, Shannon. It is not any of their business, but you know whose business it is? Ours. It is our business. Shannon made a deal with our dark lord Andy Cohen to sell access to her personal life for fame, but now she doesn’t want to follow through on her half of the bargain. Also, these problems are pretty boring. If she talked about their real challenges on camera, they might not use them. But know what they will use? Shannon freaking out and storming off every time someone tries to get her to talk about her personal life.

I also take issue with this idea of The Vault, or at least how Shannon uses it. Contrary to what I just said, I think that Housewives deserve some privacy. So, if Shannon wants to go to Tamra and tell her that she had genital warts removed and to not tell anyone, that deserves to be in The Vault. However, if she tells every woman in the group about the wart removal, then it is not in The Vault, it is public knowledge, and it is now your storyline and you have to talk about it. Those are the completely arbitrary rules I made up after having been a cast member on a docusoap for exactly zero seconds of zero days.

Speaking of doomed relationships, we stop in with Ryan and Jenn as they finish a workout and get ready for a wedding. We now get a variation on the “hot boyfriends getting into a bath” genre that we’ve seen so often, but instead, it’s just Ryan standing there in a towel after the shower saying absolutely ridiculous things to Jenn. Now, objectively, Ryan is very hot. Very, very, very hot. And my type is totally very fit assholes (see: Paul Ryan), but Ryan is such a jerk that I can’t even find him hot anymore.

In the scene, he asks Jenn when they’re getting married, and she says she’s reticent because he let someone else get in between them during a break. He says that person didn’t get between them; he just banged her out but never really thought of her. Okay, he may not see a problem, but if Jenn does, there is a problem. He tells her, “You can choose to stay in the present in the moment, or you can choose to let your mind run.” What he’s saying to her is that if she lets this thing that he did in the past bother her, she is a bad person. Um, no. The best indication of future performance is past behavior. If Jenn forgets the past, then Ryan will reenact it on top of some other wannabe fitness model with big tits.

Heather then goes to meet Shannon for them to have the third conversation about how Heather talked shit about Shannon’s relationship when she didn’t really, but she did in the confessionals, so Shannon is going to be pissed at the reunion, but she has no reason to be pissed now. When they meet, Heather asks what is in the espresso martini. The waiter says vodka, simple syrup, and Kahlua. Heather says she wants that, but with no Kahlua. Okay, so Heather just wants … vodka and sugar? That’s nothing like an espresso martini. Heather and Shannon seem to make up at this lunch, but who really knows? Who really cares? Heather knows what she has to do, and that is apologize to Shannon even though she never did anything wrong because Shannon won’t ever take responsibility for anything he’s done.

The Widow Armstrong invites all of the women to a pumpkin carving party out in some field and even has Marshall, a pumpkin carving expert, come to help them. She gets them to cut out the butthole of the pumpkin because it somehow keeps it fresh. I’m not sure how that works because if you took my butthole away, I would be the opposite of fresh. I would be ornery, unhinged, and probably quite violently ill. Then, when the women finish their pumpkins, they’ve just cut giant round holes in the sides of them. What is that supposed to be? A haunted meatball? Why even have an expert at this point? I could have told them how to make completely ugly pumpkins for free.

There are two topics of conversation at the table: how Shannon said Gina’s kids were going to have to go to Child Protective Services and how Heather and Terry maybe planted paparazzi pictures. Oh, wait. There was a third. Also that Shannon said that Gina’s boyfriend, Travis has a small dick. Alright, as the unofficial spokesman for the Growers Not Showers community, I would like to take this moment to say that penis-size shaming for a gentleman as handsome, dependable, and wholesome as Travis will not be tolerated. I also love how Gina starts to say, “Travis’s penis is fi…..” and then realizes that she is on camera talking about her boyfriend’s dick size, and this is really a no-win situation.

This just underlines my problems with Shannon. The person who Shannon is and the person who Shannon thinks she is are diametrically opposed. Shannon says she is not a person who would say that someone else’s kids are going to CPS or that she would talk about someone else’s boyfriend’s weiner. But here we have it. She is. She said those things, and no matter how much she denies it (or doesn’t remember it because she was drunk), it doesn’t mean that she didn’t. I just wish that Shannon would drink some of Lisa Rinna’s patented Own It brand energy drink so that she could see how she behaves and how she thinks she behaves are about as complimentary as orange juice and toothpaste.

So, yeah, Shannon says she didn’t say that about CPS, everyone else thinks she did, the camera thinks she did because they said it, and we think she did because we saw what the cameras saw, so she’s totally busted.

Finally, I guess we need to talk about Heather and Terry’s love-in pictures when they were at Disneyland. Okay, these are totally fake. As Teddi Mellencamp (say her name three times, and she will appear to tell you about her latest plastic surgery) said on her podcast, the paps aren’t at Disneyland, and they certainly don’t come to Orange County. Do I think that Terry is cheating on Heather? No. Do I think Heather would have spent an entire afternoon of her one life going to Disneyland, buying tickets, going on a couple of rides, posing for some fake photos, and then driving all the way home just so America thinks that her relationship is perfect? I sure as shit do.

When Tamra talks to Heather about it, she says the pictures are suspicious. Heather takes this to mean that Tamra believes there is some credence to the cheating rumors. No, she means the pictures are suspicious. You can believe that Heather staged this and that there is no affair. Heather does not interpret it this way. “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire,” Heather says. “But there is also arson.” Okay, that’s a great line, but it still doesn’t address why she is protesting so much. Is it because she hates these women? Is it because Shannon is accusing her of something she didn’t commit? No, I don’t think so. I think it’s about the Vibez.

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