In this episode of The Real Housewives of Atlanta, “Duking It Out,” Porsha throws a party for the new man in her life, Phaedra and Kandi try to repair their friendship and a new housewife is introduced.

When we last saw the “ladies,” Sheree and Kenya were fighting over who was the biggest deadbeat. Kenya had lots to say about the still-unfinished Chateau Sheree, and Sheree had her own opinion about “Moore Manor.” Needs more manners, is more like it.

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Same Kenya, Different Day

Just as it looks like Sheree may throw her drink in Kenya’s face, the other ladies intervene, and Kenya backs off, apologizing for calling Sheree a “bitch ass.”

Kenya takes her leave and heads to the bar, while Sheree is left to apologize for Claudia. All Miss Bailey is trying to do is sell some damn eyewear.

Cynthia introduces Sheree to Porsha, and Porsha comments on how Sheree went from 0-1,000 in no-time flat.

Phaedra follows Kenya to the bar and questions why Kenya went after Sheree, especially since Kenya is supposed to be a changed woman. Yes, remember how all the ladies went through therapy and ended the season 7 reunion with a group hug?

Kenya swears she didn’t start it, but anyone with eyes, ears and two brain cells knows that Kenya was gunning for Sheree.

From the Frying Pan into the Fire

Kenya leaves and now Cynthia is left to deal with the fallout from Kenya’s dust-up with Peter. Peter tells Cynthia that nobody has any right to judge him, regarding the video showing him cozying up to a strange woman in Charlotte. Cynthia’s attitude is, “The video happened. They all saw it. Deal with it.” You play, you pay.

Kenya Asks Kim for a Favor

We finally get to meet new housewife Kim Fields. Apparently, she and Kenya know each other, but I’d classify them as acquaintances more than friends.

Kenya goes to visit Kim, who’s working on an independent pilot. Kenya calls Kim Hollywood royalty, which is a bit of a stretch. Yes, she starred in two successful sitcoms, and she’s a working actress and director. I did a quick search on IMDB, and the last time Fields was in front of the camera was a TV movie in 2014. Kim directed eight episodes of Tyler Perry’s sitcom, House of Payne, between 2009 and 2012. The pilot she mentions to Kenya is titled By Any Means, and there are two episodes in post-production.

Kenya wants Kim to take a look at her passion project, “Life Twirls On.” Kenya swears there’s been a lot of interest, but she hasn’t found the right home for it. Kenya thinks Kim could help her out, possibly by directing. Kim doesn’t come out and say no, but she isn’t jumping on board either.

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Marital Woes Makes Friends Out of Foes

In the wake of Cynthia’s launch party, there’s some good buzz about her eyewear line. But as she Skypes with her business partner, Tiffany, Cynthia can’t help but bring up her marital woes. Peter has headed back to Charlotte, and Cynthia doesn’t know when they’ll speak again. Cynthia isn’t sure what the future holds, but she knows her issues with Peter are serious and have to be resolved.

Even though Cynthia and Phaedra had a rocky time of it last season, they are in a good enough place now to meet for tea and “tea.” Phaedra asks about Peter and proceeds to tell Cynthia about how Malorie told the women that Cynthia has lost that lovin’ feeling for her husband in the bedroom. Cynthia isn’t about to get into all that. All she’s got to say is if it’s meant to be, it will be.

Phaedra says last year, she was sitting right where Cynthia is now. Phaedra felt that the people she thought would have her back (Kandi) didn’t. Phaedra also felt many of the women were attacking her when she was already down.

Cynthia apologizes for her role in the whole mess and warns Phaedra that she may be leaning on her for support in the coming months.

This entire episode feels like a giant infomercial for Housewife products. Not only is there Cynthia’s eyewear line, but Porsha’s got her extensions, and now she’s doing lingerie. Kim, married with two sons, is launching a maternity line, some home accessories and other crap. And Kandi is opening a restaurant.

So far this season, the storylines are thin and recycled, but the self-promotion is off the damn charts.

Could Porsha’s MVP Go MIA?

Things finally take a more interesting turn when Porsha throws a surprise party for Duke. It’s a chance for her family and friends to get a good look at the new man in Porsha’s life. Porsha’s big night gets a bit upstaged when her sister, Lauren, announces that she’s expecting a baby. Porsha thought she’d be the first one to pop out a tot, and she’s feeling a certain kind of way about things not working out as she had planned.

All the party guests are “concerned” about Porsha’s relationship. Duke is 24, and people wonder if he’s ready to give Porsha the things she’s ready for — in particular, a family. Neither Cynthia nor Phaedra are in a good head space when it comes to true love. It doesn’t help that Duke has been linked with “tranny strippers” in the tabloids. While Porsha’s in one corner talking about her and Duke moving in together, he’s in another, trying to find the nearest exit.

Kandi and Phaedra Hug It Out

Kandi, tired of only having a surface relationship with Phaedra, wants to figure out if they can get back to where they once were. Phaedra admits that she was taken aback after being approached by someone at the grocery store who wanted to buy some of the items Kandi and Todd are storing for Apollo in their garage. It turns out the government questioned Phaedra about these assets, and she had no idea where they were.

Phaedra is also pissed at all the comments Kandi made about Phaedra’s choice to not take her kids to visit Apollo in prison. Phaedra points out that Apollo is in Kentucky and getting there would cost some coin. Kandi calls BS, reminding Phaedra that she’s made it clear in the past she’s pretty flush. This prompts Phaedra to let Kandi know that she’s paying private school tuition and all of Apollo’s legal bills.

Just when it looks as if these two are just going to continue to go around in circles, they have a breakthrough. Phaedra still considers Kandi a close friend. Kandi was present for the birth of both of Phaedra’s boys, and not just anybody gets to see Phaedra’s coochie. Phaedra just wants to know that Kandi has her back. All Kandi asks is that if Phaedra has a problem, she should come to Kandi directly and not talk behind her back.

Kandi may be ready to forgive and forget, but her manager/friend Don Juan has a different take on Kandi and Phaedra’s relationship. Kandi’s been dealing with a ton of stuff in her own life, and Phaedra has been MIA. He questions if Kandi thinks she and Phaedra are really cool, and Kandi hopes so, but you can tell Don Juan planted a seed that will continue to grow.

The Real Housewives of Atlanta airs Sundays at 8pm on Bravo.

(Image courtesy of Bravo)

Jennifer Lind-Westbrook

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Jennifer has worked as a freelance writer in the entertainment field since 2012. In addition to currently writing feature articles for Screen Rant, Jennifer has contributed content ranging from recaps to listicles to reviews for BuddyTV, PopMatters, TVRage, TVOvermind, and Tell-Tale TV. Links to some of Jennifer’s reviews can be found on Rotten Tomatoes.