For a season finale, last night's installment of The Real Housewives of New York City didn't exactly leave us with any major cliffhangers.
As our Real Housewives correspondent explains below, even the hilarity of LuAnn singing wasn't enough to save one of the more boring episodes of the year. What did you think of it?
This season of The Real Housewives of New York City ended with a... thud. It was alternately embarrassing (LuAnn singing) and nap-inducing (everything else). Even the much hyped “Let’s Talk Out Our Issues” lunch between Bethenny and Jill turned out to be unremarkable. Couldn’t one of them have slapped the other? Couldn’t they have screamed obscenities at each other? Or couldn’t they have flipped a table?
Let’s bring Teresa in from the NJ Housewives to give these girls a lesson in how to make good reality TV inside restaurants.
Let’s talk a little bit more about this lunch. I have to admit, I was hoping for a screaming fight and full-on Shutter Island-level insanity. That didn’t happen. Jill started out by explaining to us, “I want her to forgive me for holding a grudge and not letting it go soon enough.” But Bethenny seemed wary: “Jill and I were very close and she was definitely a big part of my life but this friendship has been shredded."
In an attempt to begin to win Bethenny back and to get us to want her to win Bethenny back, Jill says a lot of crap such as:
- “I feel like we were married and we’re like separated and I don’t want to be separated.”
- “I am sorry that when you reached out to me at Ramona’s because I wasn’t ready... I feel really bad about that.”
-“There’s no reason for her to cut me out. There’s just no reason. It all happened so fast. But I am not putting this on her. This was about me but I think she should forgive me.”
Bethenny is appropriately skeptical, as are we. One of the tough things about reality TV stars becoming famous outside their show is that you know what’s happening in their current life while their shows are months behind. For example, these last few episodes have all been right around Christmas of this past year. We are watching in June.
We see Bethenny with the tiniest of baby bumps on television while simultaneously reading in Us Weekly (come on, you know you read it) that she had a baby girl with her husband Jason. Her husband Jason who is her boyfriend Jason in this episode. Their real lives and the “real lives” that the show portrays are so out of synch it’s dizzying.
Also, we know that Bethenny didn’t invite Jill to her wedding, so how reconciled can they be despite Jill supposedly reaching out to her for forgiveness?Always honest, Bethenny tells Jill, “You don’t see yourself from the outside looking in. You create arguments and drama and pick fights with people and count things and then you have to deal with the residual damage.”
Jill responds to this very reasonable statement by saying, “You are so right, Bethenny. It’s time for a major change. I am off to therapy right now!” No, just kidding. She really said, “Well, I’m not perfect. My intention is to always do the right thing,” right before burying her face in a napkin and crying.
Later on Jill tells us that she thinks the lunch went well but she’s not sure where she and Bethenny will go from there. None of us actually see this as we are currently fast asleep, lulled by boredom, drooling on our couch cushions. But then a jarring and horrible sound snaps us awake. What on earth can that hellish noise be?
Is it a cat in heat? Is it a dog being strangled? Is it a tone-deaf church choir performing “Amazing Grace”? No... it’s LuAnn singing her song, “Money can’t buy you cla-yaaaaaasss; Elegance is luuuuuuurned.” Run for cover!
Dear sweet baby Jesus, this has truly got to be one of the worst songs ever. I get so uncomfortable watching LuAnn attempt to be alluring as she sings that I both mute the television and bury my face in a pile of pillows. I stay that way until I am sure that the song must be over because when LuAnn starts to sing I feel the chunks begin to rise.
She swings her arms awkwardly and steps from side to side like someone who is really bad at step aerobics but who is just trying to fit in with the group and not get noticed by the instructor. Her voice is so synthesized you can’t even tell what it really sounds like. I am assuming her voice is horrible. It must be bad because at the launch party for her new C.D. she was totally lip-synching.
Many of the Housewives have shown up to the launch to show their support of LuAnn and her new vomit-educing venture, including Kelly who is wearing a dress that barely covers her nipples. The women twist around with their arms in the air and perform the mandatory dance steps of middle-aged white women while LuAnn sings.
After the singing is (mercifully) finished, Jill discusses the wisdom that can be gleaned from the song’s deep and powerful message, “I never thought of that, that elegance is learned. You can be born rich but you can’t learn it. You have to learn elegance.” Huh? I’m sure Jill doesn’t even know what she means. Let’s admit it: This song means nothing. LuAnn is trying to make money because her rich husband dumped her and this is easy and doesn’t require any actual skills or knowledge. That’s it. Too bad the American public has to suffer so she can pursue “her dream.”
I will keep a pair of earplugs in my car now in case this song ever comes on the radio. I might accidentally drive off the road trying to stuff the earplugs deep into my ear canals. It’s a risk I will have to take.
Also in attendance at this launch party is Chris, LuAnn’s producer. This guy looks like Phillip Seymour-Hoffman, and not in a good way. He’s all pasty and his hair is the same color as his skin. He’s one of those weirdos who wears sunglasses night and day, indoors or out. How annoying is that? Why do people do this? Is it because that is what famous people do and you want to be famous? Is it because you have one wonky eye that you don’t want people to know about?
Chris shows up in a stretch Hummer limo along with a harem of hoes. LuAnn is enchanted. “He has a great aura around him” she says. I agree that he has an aura; it is the distinct aura of a douche.
Later on Ramona (or, as Jill calls her, “Ramoner”) and her daughter Avery head to Oscar Blandi’s salon to get their hair done for that night’s wedding vow renewal ceremony. Ramona is already on edge and acting weird. Avery, far more stable and mature than her mother, is not sympathetic. When Ramona tells Avery that she is worried she will cry while trying to say her wedding vows Avery rolls her eyes and says, “Mom, it’s okay. Just try to be strong for a minute and a half. It’s not that difficult.”
Ramona is still onboard the crazy train when they arrive at the hotel to get their makeup done and to get dressed. Ramona begins to babble incoherently. Here are a few gems:
-“I’m gonna forget my speech. I feel like I’m gonna blank out. I’m just gonna blank out because I’m nervous. I am so nervous. Why am I nervous? Why am I so nervous?? I’m married already! Why am I nervous?!”
-While standing next to Avery and looking in a mirror, “Oh my god. Now I’m gonna really cry because you are a woman now. You’re standing next to me and I am a woman and you are a young woman. I am an older woman and you are a young, gorgeous, beautiful woman."
Time for a big glass of pinot grigio, Ramoner.
Over the last few episodes this “wedding” has been built up so much. Pardon me, but it’s not even a wedding! It’s a ceremony to renew marriage vows. For once Kelly is a voice of reason. She says, “I was really hesitant to go to Ramona’s vow renewal because the whole thing seemed so concocted. Seventeen years, like, to be honest, like seventeen is a really random number.” I never thought I would utter these words but, Kelly, you are so right.
As the “wedding” continues we are lulled back to Snoozeville. I practically had to prop my eyelids open with toothpicks and splash cold water in my face to stay semi-alert. I think this ceremony was as boring as the eight-hour layover I had once at an airport in Switzerland that had no shops and nothing to do and no comfortable chairs to flop down on to try to sleep. I wandered around like a nomad, desperate for amusement and distraction. I had to stop myself from picking up a magazine during this part of the episode.
I was even willing to re-read a two-month-old catalog selling sheets and towels. It was that bad. I perked up momentarily when I noticed Ramona’s dog CoCo is wearing a blue satin outfit that matches Avery’s dress. Ramona and Avery fight about whether or not CoCo needs a leash. I guess this is what passes as an exciting moment and I’ll take it.
The rest of the episode limps along. Women arrive at the ceremony wearing dresses that expose 99% of their boob area. Evidently this is a requirement for fake New York City weddings. Alex’s husband Simon arrives in a complete suit that also has a gray pleated skirt on top. By this point we the viewers are in a near-coma and don’t care anymore. Even when LuAnn starts up again with her so-called “singing” I could barely muster the energy required to hit mute, to turn my eyes away from the screen, and to grab my barf bag.
So long for now, Housewives. It’s been a rollercoaster season of ups and downs, the biggest up definitely being Kelly’s total breakdown in the Virgin Islands, the biggest down being this boring-ass wedding. Please create lots of drama for yourselves in the off-season so we can see some good catfights next time. Or maybe just follow the producers’ directions when they instruct you to fight for a made-up reason. You know that’s what we all love the most.