We have bad news and good news, THG readers. First, the bad:
This season of The Real Housewives of New York City is over. But, now, the good: our reality show correspondent sucked it up and watched Bethenny Frankel's spin-off show last night instead! She's filed the following report on Bethenny Getting Married?
Watching this show is a totally different experience than watching another one of the Real Housewives shows. The major differences?: This new spin-off focuses on one likable person and there’s relatively little drama. My familiar stomach knot of extreme Housewives anxiety never reared its ugly head while watching Bethenny Frankel on her own. I think I like that... but I’m not sure yet.
I’ll admit that I tune into both The Real Housewives of New York City and The Real Housewives of New Jersey to see all the catfights and shit-storms that crop up each week. I imagine those of you who also watch these shows choose to come back each week for a similar reason. Will a show about a Housewife be compelling without the normally high level of kookiness we associate with them?
Also, is anyone interested in watching a show that is simultaneously brand-new and also totally outdated? We all know Bethenny did in fact get married, which makes the question mark in the show’s title seem oddly placed. We also know she had a baby girl and that, at least so far, Bethenny and Jason are still married. Do I want to spend my time watching all these “new” episodes when I already know what the conclusion will be?
So far, my answer is yes. I find Bethenny charming and relatable. I just like to root for this girl even though she certainly doesn’t need anyone else cheering her on; she’s enough of a success as it is.
She has a nice smile and a great sense of humor. She drops funny lines left and right and is perfectly self-deprecating. When Jason objects to having a young straight man work as Bethenny’s new assistant in their home Bethenny says, “What 24-year-old guy wants to hit this? I’m sure a 24-year-old wants a knocked-up 39-year-old.” I love it - it’s funny but also true and quite unlike what we see women saying on most reality television shows.
When we were first introduced to her boyfriend (now-fiancée on the show and now-husband in real life) in this season’s Real Housewives of New York City, I will admit that I found him sort of boring. He didn’t seem to be a match for Bethenny intellectually or socially. But now I appreciate his demeanor. He is the calming and kind "yin" to Bethenny’s hyperactive and crass "yang."
And Bethenny thinks they are totally compatible and truly similar in most of their likes and dislikes. She says, “Both of us would rather be eating potato skins at a mall.” Ummm... maybe not. I can’t quite imagine Bethenny eating fatty-fat potato skins at the Chili’s in the mall, can you?
Jason also appears to be able to come up with his own funny lines. While looking at Bethenny sitting at the kitchen counter in her pajamas eating frosting for breakfast he observes, “I love how your boobs now rest on your belly. It’s great. So sexy.” He also tells her she is beautiful seemingly every 15 minutes. What girl wouldn’t love this?
He’s open about his feelings toward his soon-to-be bride when he says, “To be honest, she was engaged three times. So I guess I should have a little concern.” I would share your concern, too, Jason, if I didn’t already know that you actually do get married.Bethenny is in therapy now and while I feel it’s questionable for these sessions to be filmed, I do think it’s good that she’s going. Clearly she has some issues to resolve. She unloads a bit of her past traumas to the therapist and he says: “Look, if I had the experience you just described I’d be terrified of relationships.”
Bethenny and Jason do argue and so far their arguments revolve around Jason’s desire to surround himself with friends and family clashing with Bethenny’s desire to have quiet alone time at home. During one argument Jason makes a good point when he says, “This is the problem I have. I walk on eggshells when I ask you to do anything with friends and family.”
He also reminds her, “This is our place, not your place,” when she objects to letting his good friend stay at their apartment. I hope therapy is able to help Bethenny work through some of this stuff because this relationship does seem promising and like one you would hope can last.
The storyline on this show are very loosely explored and definitely take a backseat to Bethenny’s funny one-liners and time spent with Jason in their fabulous Tribeca apartment. A far as “plot” in this episode, we saw:
- Bethenny modeling in a runway show for a heart disease charity.
- Bethenny interviewing and hiring a new assistant.
- Bethenny asking such inappropriate interview questions as, “Do you sleep around?”
- Jason’s initial worry about this assistant being a handsome and straight young man but then his pleasant realization that he now has a new buddy with which to fist-bump and talk about football. (Bethenny’s take on the male bonding?: “There was a fist-pounding moment and, you know, I was like, oh no. Like this doesn’t need to happen. Like masculine bromance nonsense.”)
- Bethenny repeatedly yelling things at the dog like, “You need to be a team player!”
- A friend advising Bethenny to put cabbage on her engorged breasts.
- Bethenny’s horror when she realizes Jason wants to view the birth up-close, like up-up-up-UP-CLOSE. She tells him, “You might see some things you will never forget. I think it’s a whole mess down there.”
- Jason and Bethenny fighting and then, directly after the fight, purchasing expensive wedding rings.
- Jason strongly encouraging Bethenny to host a couples’ housewarming party at their new apartment, Bethenny grudgingly agreeing, and then Jason missing the party due to heavy snow and a canceled flight
- Bethenny donning a REALLY short brown tutu to said engagement party.
What are your thoughts so far? Interesting show? Boring show? Do you like Bethenny on her own or do you miss the drama created by her fellow Housewives?