And so it begins. The first part of a three (yes, three!) part reunion for "The Real Housewives" aired tonight, and the women wasted no time getting into it. Or throwing shade. Or cutting to the white meat or something. There was a lot of yelling, basically. Because this is going to drag on and on for a few more weeks, I thought it might be helpful to come up with a scorecard of who wins which argument. I suspected Kenya, who loves arguments the way some people love wine, savoring their nuances and earthy undertones, would pummel a few of the other Housewives into submission. But guess who brought a gun to a knife fight? Porsha, or all people! Yes, it was a night of many surprises. And some really great eyeshadow. This season, the women on all the reunion shows look like tweens who've hijacked Mommy's make-up box or drag queens, but I kind of love it.
Anyway, let's get to it. The women all come well-armed. Phaedra has her baby bump, Cynthia has her boobs, NeNe and Kandi have big rings and Kenya has a fan. Yes, a fan. I guess it's because she can't hop up from the sofa to twirl, this is her Scarlett O'Hara substitute. I really wish she'd make a dress out of curtains, just to stick with the theme.
Battle #1 - Kandi vs. Kim
Andy informs us that Kandi has served Kim with papers requesting royalties from "Tardy for the Party." Royalties? Really? Did people actually buy that mess? I'm wondering if Bravo is planning to play that during "Don't Be Tardy," in which case Kandi may want to sue Bravo. That would be fun! But since Kim doesn't show up to make her case, Kandi gets this one by default.
Battle #2 - Kenya vs. Phaedra
Ah, you knew that trashy mesh bathing suit cover-up Phaedra wore in Anguilla was going to get plopped on the table like a fresh kill or stinky sweat socks, as much as we never really wanted to think about it again. Andy asks the group if they found the outfit offensive, as if it actually smelled like a fresh kill or stinky sweat socks. Mostly the reaction is shrugging, and Porsha admits she was startled, if not offended. But Kenya sees an opportunity and dives right in like a diabetic kid with cake.
Yes, yes she was offended! She was offended that Phaedra wore this revealing item in front of all of the ladies' menfolk, as proper women wear floor-length dresses and covered sleeves and wigs or, if possible, burkas! Amazingly, Kenya gets this statement out of her mouth without choking on a big, chewy wad of her own hypocrisy.
Phaedra shrugs off Kenya's derision, because she isn't ashamed of her ample, curvy body. Or anyone else's. She loves naked people, male or female! And oversized penises, as everyone knows. I don't think Andy knew, because his eyes almost bugged out of his head, though I suspect he likes them just as much. "We all came into the world nude, and you're gonna go out nude. Until I dress you," Phaedra says, smiling in a vaguely creepy way. Everyone seems so unnerved by Phaedra's frank appreciation for body parts both dead and alive that the conversation is swiftly dropped. I'd say this is a win for Phaedra, but I'm not sure making everyone shudder in disgust really qualifies.
Having sufficiently covered the issue of Phaedra's basketball net gown, we move on to whether or not Kenya really looks like Beyonce. The answer? Only to white people, who can't tell black people apart. Still, Kenya clings to the fact that Beyonce herself used the term "Gone with the Wind" fabulous. To her, this means she's Team Kenya. Phaedra thinks that just means she watches the show.
Also, Kenya gets the opportunity to make it clear she'd be happy to have a threesome with Apollo, but not Phaedra. She'd recruit Kandi instead. Phaedra has no problem being excluded, though I'm betting she'd prefer Apollo was excluded as well. And yes, Phaedra told that husband of hers not to flirt back with Miss Thing, which we'll probably hear about in more detail when the guys join the show.
The verdict? In this battle, a real head-to-head argument never really catches fire. I don't know why they're being so polite. Maybe Phaedra is awash in soothing pregnancy hormones or just ate a pie or two by herself right before the show, but I think Kenya's just getting warmed up.
Winner: A draw
Battle #3 - Kenya vs. Porsha
Andy asks Kenya about her health. She's fine, thank you, but deeply hurt that the other women didn't touch base with her after her health scare. Well, she didn't tell any of them while it was happening, so they didn't know until the show aired, but they should have contacted her then. You know, five months later. When she had been fine for five months. And was no longer scared. Even NeNe, who did contact Kenya (as did Cynthia) to offer their support thinks this is damn stupid of Kenya.
Porsha pipes up to say she doesn't think it's okay for Kenya to play the victim here, as she WAS fine and, even though she said she was a changed woman, she continued to treat Porsha like crap. And by the way? Kenya certainly didn't contact her about any of HER struggles to offer her support. Kenya actually says she doesn't know what Porsha is talking about. Oh, oh, very uncool, Kenya. Your negative breast biopsy? Not exactly losing an actual baby, bitch. To act like you don't actually know what Porsha's struggles are implies you're just cruel or too busy screaming at the television during Porsha's segments to pay attention. I can't believe I'm taking Porsha's side, but damn.
Winner: Porsha, big time.
Battle #4 - Kandi vs. NeNe
This wasn't much of a battle, more of a skirmish. Kandi think NeNe throws shade her way, while NeNe thinks Kandi throws shade her way, so fair's fair, right? Actually, Kandi points out that NeNe said something about her late boyfriend A.J. on a radio show a while back, something that wasn't part of the show, and that was not cool. NeNe admits that she did say those things, but that was back during Kandi's first season on the show. So… what? Kandi was a jerk back then? NeNe hadn't fully evolved into the Zen super goddess she is now? What? NeNe doesn't apologize, even though that would be the easy thing to do. Especially since NeNe is so "evolved" these days.
Battle #5 - Kenya vs. Porsha
Oh, goody. Kenya's going to take another run at Porsha. I'm sure Kenya thinks that biting into Dummy like she's a plate of ribs is just good fun, but guess what? Porsha came to this reunion show locked and loaded! This is just too fun, really. Porsha may not be the sharpest knife in the drawer, but preparation and, I'm sure, someone coaching her on what to say and when to say it makes up for her general dimness.
Kenya accuses Porsha of rolling her eyes after calling her Miss America instead of Miss USA Porsha points out that she was rolling her eyes because she couldn't believe she made that mistake, and besides, Miss America is a better title. Doesn't Miss America require a talent portion, while Miss U.S.A. is essentially a swimsuit competition? Kenya blinks and changes the topic. Point to Porsha!
Kenya then explains why she hasn't liked Porsha from the first time she met her. Porsha was unrefined and unsophisticated with a cheerleader (read: bimbo) personality. Porsha thinks Kenya was jealous of her. Why did Kenya tear into her when she asked if she was married or had kids when all of the other women asked the same questions? Kenya has no answer. She whips out her fan and frantically waves it, as if she thinks the thing has magical powers and will transport her to someplace far, far away, possibly Michigan. Another point to Porsha!
After quibbling about ageism (Porsha counters Kenya started it by inferring she's young and dumb) and that stupid movie-themed party (Porsha calls Kenya aggressive, Kenya fans herself), we finally get to another topic Porsha has been dying to toss out there. She doesn't understand why Kenya acts like she was the first black Miss USA and never mentions Carole Gist. You know, Carole Gist, the black woman who won THE YEAR BEFORE KENYA? And was also from Michigan? And who was a runner-up for Miss Universe? Andy asks Kenya if she has anything to say about this. She fans herself and simply says, "No."
I can't believe it. I think Porsha has truly beaten Kenya.
Winner: Porsha, by a mile.
Battle #6 Phaedra vs. Kenya
Time to discuss the work-out videos, as if we didn't hear about these damn videos most of the season. I feel like I've worked my butt muscles just through the power of suggestion. Anyway, Kenya says she didn't steal the idea, as she's a "beauty brand" and was a more likely candidate to do a work-out video anyway. Plus, she's outselling Phaedra! Phaedra argues that's not true. She's outsold Jillian Michaels, and she hasn't even been paying attention to Kenya's video anyway, as she's trying to compete with people who are better than she is. Kenya thinks she's just trying to compete with people who have better bodies than she does. A point to Kenya, just for having a good comeback.
They discuss Amazon reviews. Kenya says Phaedra's are from "quacky" fans, while Phaedra points out that Kenya's are fake and there was even a comment that reviews came in for her DVD before it had been released, and reviews had been removed by Amazon. Zing! A point for Phaedra!
Next, after discussing that EW felt Kenya's DVD was more useful while Phaedra's was more entertaining, Kenya launches into how fat Phaedra is. Phaedra points out that Kenya's butt and boobs are as fake as her relationship with Walter was. Kenya tries to counter that Phaedra smokes and drinks, but I have to give this one to Phaedra. When Kenya stoops to calling Phaedra an evil little devil, I think even she must realize she's grasping.
Kenya tries to argue that Phaedra wasn't relevant until she came onto the show. Even Andy thinks this is a little sketchy. When Andy is telling you you're full of it, I think that means even his very high bullcrap meter has maxed out. Point to Phaedra.
Then, we see a bit from Kenya's new… video. It's sort of a song, but not really (watch it yourself here). It's basically Kenya making fun of Porsha, Phaedra and Walter, twirling like Wonder Woman, then dancing and pretending to be Beyonce. It's… not great. Or all that funny, although the drag queen she gets to imitate Porsha? Totally convincing. And Kenya looks good most of the time, which I guess is the whole point.
Phaedra thinks imitation is the highest form of flattery. You know, "Single White Female," black, delusional Kenya. Kenya tries to imply Phaedra isn't really a lawyer. What? Phaedra points out she's been a member of the bar for 14 years. Point to Phaedra.
The discussion turns into just a hysterical screaming match at this point, with Kenya yelling about Phaedra being mean and Kandi jumping in and Phaedra yelling and it's all a bit much. The good news? We all have time to take some aspirin and get over it, because this battle will be continued next week.
Who do you think won? Who lost? And were you surprised that Porsha brought a gun to the knife fight when Kenya only had a little fan?
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