In this episode of The Real Housewives of Orange County, “Take a Swing,” Heather plans a group getaway to Napa, Tamra has the blues, Shannon and David continue to work on their marriage and Meghan meets the other wives.
What is it about these OC wives and hocking booze? I’m becoming suspicious that this show might be churning out more alcoholics than entrepreneurs.
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Hooch by Heather
First, Vicki and Tamra launched “Wine by Wives,” which Vicki is no longer affiliated with, and now Heather has developed a sparkling white whine called Collette. She jokes that the beverage is named after her youngest daughter because she’s their favorite, but after a short montage of “Coco” screaming at the top of her lungs, Heather admits they picked the moniker because it sounds French.
Heather is planning a fancy pants launch party in Napa, complete with a cake shaped like a wine bottle. Please, ladies, nobody even look at that cake until Heather gives the okay.
Until Death or Divorce Do Us Part
Shannon and David continue to wallow in their misery at the marriage retreat. As if things aren’t bleak enough, they get to write their own eulogies and the other reads it. David breaks down, and Shannon takes this as a good sign since the guy is pretty stoic.
Shannon reads David’s eulogy and it isn’t exactly a love letter to their marriage. He gives himself props for putting up with Shannon’s issues to “the best of his abilities.” Kudos to Shannon for not improvising and throwing in a few choice words like “man whore,” “liar,” “cheater” or “self-absorbed SOB.”
Next, the couple sits down with the counselor, and they deal with their emotions regarding David’s infidelity. David fears Shannon will never “get over it.” The counselor points out that it’s pretty common among adulterers to leave the other person if they aren’t absolved of their sins. Shannon swears she doesn’t want to punish David and she wants them to grow from this experience, and she’s going to do everything in her power to not not get over it. Huh?
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Tamra’s in a Funk
Heather and Tamra meet up at a juice bar. How cliche is that? They discuss their upcoming trip to wine country, but Tamra isn’t thrilled with the guest list — in particular, Lizzie. Heather thinks that if she and Shannon can reboot, Tamra and Lizzie can certainly make an effort to get along. But Tamra’s feeling emotionally fragile. I guess when nobody sends you flowers or calls you after your umpteenth boob job, you feel you might be running on empty in the friend department.
Tamra’s been dealing with a whole lot of off-camera drama with her ex, Simon. There’s been a prolonged and nasty custody battle that hasn’t painted the self-anointed hottest housewife as the world’s best mom. I suspect Tamra is trying to revamp her image after coming across so two-faced last season.
Is the Third Time a Charm?
Meghan is still acclimating to life in Orange County. She’s very pragmatic when she comes to marriage. Jimmy’s been married twice before and she’s been married previously herself, so even though she’d like to believe things will work out this time around, she’s cautiously optimistic. One big problem is the whole long-distance thing. Meghan and Jimmy are still newlyweds, and he’s spending 50% of his time in St. Louis working.
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Shannon and David return home from the retreat, and Shannon is determined to keep her family intact and not throw David’s affair in his face. Sorry. Uh uh, no can do here. If he so much as left the toilet seat up, I’d play the philandering card. I do admire Shannon’s fortitude to not give up, and I don’t want to belittle her efforts, but I think this whole thing is going to end in heartache, especially since it’s all playing out on national TV.
David and Shannon try and reassure their daughters that daddy isn’t going anywhere, and David apologizes to them each in turn for hurting them. They all know about his indiscretion thanks to his pathological need to express himself via texting and e-mail. The girls all forgive, but one — I don’t know which — says she’ll never forget.
Is It Always This Chilly in Mexico?
Vicki throws a fiesta and has extended an olive branch to Tamra by inviting her. Despite having a boyfriend with cancer, Vicki is in pretty high spirits. I’m guessing we have Zoloft or Prozac to thank for that. Vicki needs to dole out whatever pharmaceuticals she’s taking to some of her party guests, who are a bit on edge.
This is Meghan’s first time meeting all the ladies, and Lizzie is dreading being in close proximity to Tamra. Shannon’s like a chihuahua on a good day, and we know Tamra has no idea what to expect after not seeing her former bestie, Vicki, for months.
Shannon gives Tamra the cold shoulder. She’s clearly not over Tamra’s behavior last season, especially Tamra sharing Shannon’s marital problems with Heather. Tamra has better luck with Brooks, who is affable. Tamra does show genuine concern for his health, but he’s upbeat about his prognosis.
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A Second Chance at a First Impression
Jeana Keough shows up looking fabulous. I was convinced she would be Meghan’s in with the gals, but it’s actually Heather since she and Terry have known Jim for years. Along with Meghan and Jim, Heather brings Katie Hamilton, also the wife of a professional baseball player, Josh Hamilton. Supposedly, Katie was supposed to be a full-time cast member this season but pulled out a few months before shooting completed due to personal reasons.
Meghan was actually at Heather’s infamous hoedown, and she made quite an impression on David, much to Shannon’s chagrin. Meghan, David and Vicki did a few tequila shots together to get that party going.
Meghan approaches Shannon and David, and Shannon manages a cordial greeting through her tightly-clenched teeth. Meghan is not oblivious to the awkward vibe and thinks Shannon is under the impression that she was flirting with David at the hoedown. The three stand around smiling at each other with their dazzling white teeth until Jim swoops in to break the tension.
Old Grudges Die Hard
Shannon is wound pretty tight, while Tamra and Lizzie put their differences aside to discuss the pros and cons of anal sex with Meghan. The new girl is no prude, and their end of the table looks to be having more fun than anyone else. Maybe Shannon just needs to sit closer to one of the heaters to thaw herself out a bit.
Heather and Tamra discuss how successful the night has been. Tamra seems to be coming out of her funk. She and Vicki even hold hands for a bit; it’s not first base, but it’s a start. Why not throw in a baseball metaphor?
The only fly in the ointment is Shannon. She’s displeased to see Tamra and Vicki rekindling their friendship. Shannon has words with Vicki over the harmless display of affection, and Vicki says she just wants peace. Shannon claims to want the same thing but adds she doesn’t forget. Vicki makes it clear that she hasn’t forgotten anything that Tamra’s said or done, but she’s able to move on. Now Shannon thinks Vicki’s insinuating that she’s not able to move on. Well, you are the one with the pissy attitude, Shannon. If the sombrero fits.
Vicki and Tamra sit down and try, yet again, to hash things out. Both women have a list of grievances a mile long, but Tamra chocks up their rocky relationship to Heather’s renaming party and that wicked fight over Tamra supposedly giving Vicki the “evil eye.”
Tamra wants Vicki to stop dwelling on the past, and Vicki wants Tamra to not talk trash about Brooks to the other women. Tamra cries uncle. She’s sorry she ever doubted their relationship, and if they’re happy together, so be it. Tamra apologizes to Vicki, and since Vicki isn’t ready to throw in the towel on an eight-year friendship, they make amends, again.
The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Mondays at 9pm on Bravo.
(Image courtesy of Bravo)