'The Real Housewives of Orange County' Recap: Clambakes, Heartaches and Jewish Mary Poppins
'The Real Housewives of Orange County' Recap: Clambakes, Heartaches and Jewish Mary Poppins
Jennifer Lind-Westbrook
Jennifer Lind-Westbrook
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Tamra considers letting Vicki back into her life. Gretchen doesn't believe that Brooks is out of the picture. Alexis and Jim spend quality time together because nobody else wants them around. Gretchen entertains the idea of a more permanent commitment with Slade.

Last week's cliffhanger, which put Tamra and Vicki in close proximity after months of icing each other out, ends with a whimper and not a bang. Vicki makes the first move and gives both Gretchen and Tamra hugs. She's extremely cordial, even though she admits to having nothing but negative feelings towards Tamra. Gretchen and Tamra ask about Briana and the new baby (safe topic) and Vicki goes on her way.

The Face Lift Nobody Mentions

No sooner does Vicki get out of earshot than Tamra and Gretchen begin clucking like chickens about Vicki's horrendous (and I think botched) plastic surgery. Tamra approaches Heather, but the hostess makes it clear "to each her own." If it makes Vicki feel good about herself, then what's the harm? Terry tells Vicki her skin looks great and fusses over her. But he never mentions the giant elephant with the face lift in the room. He says asking a woman if she's had plastic surgery is akin to asking your wife if she's gained weight.

It's obvious from the seating arrangement that Heather is trying to force some kind of reconciliation. It's more like Tamra is South Korea, Vicki is North Korea and Heather is the demilitarized zone. Already uncomfortable, Heather questions Tamra about the date for her wedding. It turns out that she and Eddie have yet to set one. She says it's because they are focused on getting the fitness center up and running.

Gretchen, who is seated next to Vicki, says she doesn't mean to bring up bad blood but questions the whereabouts of Brooks. Vicki says that he's traveling but that they are "on a break" anyway. Gretchen says "but I thought you were so in love with him." A bit of a dig at the clambake. Vicki admits she is still in love with him. Tamra interrupts and says "so you're not together anymore?" She and Gretchen are determined to get a definitive status, but Vicki makes their separation sound much more fluid.

Vicki asks Gretchen how she and Slade got through all the shade that was thrown their way. Gretchen says it was hard as hell when everyone was talking about them. She also tells Vicki that she loved him and that was all that mattered. Gretchen finds it interesting how they've changed roles. Looks like Karma is giving Vicki a long overdue smack down. Then Gretchen points out how Tamra was only looking out for Vicki's best interests when it  came to Brooks even if Tamra may have not expressed it in the most sensitive way. Vicki begins joking that Tamra is giving her and Gretchen the evil eye. Tamra responds that she doesn't give evil eyes. Can't we be done with it already. What the hell does evil eye even mean; is it just a dirty look or something even more sinister? Anyway, the interaction has Tamra wondering if Vicki is trying to reach out or pick a fight.

The Airing of Grievances

Tamra decides to air her grievances right there in the middle of Heather's lovely party. She says Eddie wouldn't have been in her ear or gone after Vicki, and if he had, she would have told him to shut up. Vicki expresses that she felt their friendship was off long before that fateful night. Tamra chalks most of it up to jealousy. She felt Tamra's friendship with Gretchen made Vicki feel left out. Vicki asks Tamra if roles were reversed wouldn't she feel the same way? Tamra admits that she would. She also tells Vicki that she knew Vicki was going through a rough year and maybe she just wasn't there for her. Vicki agrees and Tamra becomes upset and leaves the table. Of course, looking at Vicki would make me lose my appetite too.

Vicki, feeling no sense of personal responsibility as usual, refuses to go after Tamra. Heather gives Tamra a pep talk and tells her this is her chance to approach things differently; that things don't have to spiral out of control into a nasty scene this time. While Tamra is away from the table Gretchen asks Vicki is she think that things can be fixed between her and Tamra and Vicki says she doesn't know. Tamra returns to the table and things are, in Gretchen's words, awkward.

Eddie leaves the dinner party early to attend a city council meeting that apparently would determine whether or not he and Tamra would open their fitness studio. As the group enjoys desert, Tamra receives a text saying they were approved. Vicki, after some nudging from Heather, approaches Tamra and congratulates her on her success. Tamra tells Vicki that she'll be able to come and work out during her lunch break. She must have been high on endorphins from the good news. The two lock themselves in Heather's wine cellar to talk things out. Needless to say, Heather wants the door to remain open and unlocked but no such luck.

Dancing with the Reality Stars

It's date night for Alexis and Jim and they've decided to taking dance lessons. She reveals that they went through some big financial setbacks last year and she believes it made her husband feel like a failure. Because of her middling to nonexistent success as a dress designer and TV host, Alexis wasn't emotionally available to stroke Jim's ego. She says she tried talking to Gretchen about her marital woes but her former friend just didn't seem interested. In a surprising twist, Alexis says if something like that happened this year, she would confide in Vicki. Since nobody else seems to like either of them, expect to see a lot of "date nights" and not much else of Jim and Alexis.

On Air

Gretchen goes to visit Slade at work. He is experiencing some professional success as a disc jockey. Of course, he uses some of his on-air time to make fun of Vicki's plastic surgery. Gretchen must have given him an earful after the dinner party. Now that Slade is getting his financial issues under control and has a steady job, Gretchen is starting to hearing a ringing in her ears; those would be wedding bells. Quite a shift from her attitude last season.

Proceed with Caution

Tamra fills Eddie in on her conversation with Vicki. She tells him that she thinks Vicki would like to be back in her life. Eddie asks if Vicki is still with Brooks and Tamra tells him no and that Vicki made it sound like Brooks dumped her. Eddie immediately says she's lying. He is not a fan of Vicki's and advises his fiance not to renew their friendship.

Of course, we all know that Vicki and Tamra are going to become friendly again. Bravo doesn't have much of a show if they can't get more than two or three of the ladies in the same room at a time. Plus, Vicki's facelift will only be freakishly entertaining for a few more episodes.

The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on Bravo.

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(Image courtesy of Bravo)