RHOC Recap: The Tamra Game
Every Housewives franchise has its strengths. Atlanta’s is shade, New York’s is comedy, Beverly Hills’ is being boring as fuck and Orange County’s is telephone. No one plays a game of telephone like an OC Housewife and Tamra Judge is the queen of it. If there was an Oscar for stirring the pot, twisting people’s words and talking shit, Tamra would win every single year. Hands down. This was definitely not Tamra's finest hour of television, however, reality TV wouldn't work without someone stirring shit up and if Tamra wasn't going above and beyond to mix up drama between the ladies, then we'd just have a repeat of last season.
There are so many different games of telephone going on at once I think my head might explode. Basically, everyone is fighting over who said what to try and stay away from Kelly's wrath. Tamra and Shannon got lunch with Kelly who was enraged about all the ladies talking about her the previous day. The number of flashbacks the producers gave us this episode was insane, and you know I'm a whore for archival footage, but thankfully it helped us piece together whatever the fuck they're fighting about. At Vicki's tea party, Shannon brought up that Kelly almost broke a girl's arm in a bar fight, Emily questioned her relationship as she'd seen drama on social media and Braunwyn tried to defend Kelly by explaining the story, but thanks to Kelly's lunch with two thirds of the Tres Amigas, all those facts got more jumbled than a jigsaw puzzle on a pillow.
Tamra and Shannon blamed all the Kelly slander on Brown Wind, and not to play devil's advocate but due to all the alcohol those two were throwing into their bodies, I really don't think they remember the chronological order of the shit-talking. Kelly ended up calling Braunwyn and if one good thing came out of all of this, it's the fact that Brown Wind finally found her backbone. Who knew it would take 14 episodes and being wrongfully accused of talking shit for Little Miss Seven Kids to finally snap. Congratulations, Braunwyn, you're finally in the game. Not to victim blame, but if Kelly had shown up to Vicki's birthday party then none of this would've happened. This is why you've got to be present at every and any group event because as soon as you skip one to stay home with your kids, then you're the topic of discussion for the day. And Kelly says the most disgusting (yet entertaining) things about everyone, so she can't be mad at anyone for throwing mud her way. If she doesn't want everyone discussing her life, then Real Housewives isn't for her.
After a beachside conversation with Emily, Braunwyn was fed up with Tamra throwing her all the way under the bus and the two decided to grab Tamra by the leg and pull her right on under with them. Shannon, Kelly, Braunwyn, and Emily all got together for dinner the one time Tamra was out of town, and following usual OC protocol, she was the topic of discussion. After Tamra tried to blame Braunwyn for instigating the trash talk about Kelly, the newbie turned on her lesbian lover faster than you can say scissoring and revealed it was really Tamra Judge who exposed the train rumor on camera. Braunwyn went from crying whenever she hears a raised voice to dropping a Hiroshima sized bomb on the group. I'm surprised Kelly didn't run out of the restaurant and start smashing in the windows of Tamra's Coto home with a baseball bat because she was angrier than Vicki screaming about multiple partners on top of a mountain.
As soon as the words train and Tamra entered Kelly's ears, it was open season on the absentee Housewife. The resident cunt caller immediately told Shannon everything Tamra has ever said about her from calling her fat, making fun of her bowl injury, telling Kelly she wants to go after her, and possibly the worst one of all, that she didn't want to share a room on their upcoming trip. Ouch. Obviously, it's easy to hate Tamra for trash-talking everyone behind their backs, but Kelly isn't innocent in all of this. When Tamra was bitching about Shannon, was the cunt caller just sitting there politely nodding her head? Fuck no, she was just as guilty. Kelly didn't tell Shannon that information because she felt bad, she just wanted to make her hate Tamra. If she really cared about Mrs. Storms Beador, she would've taken her aside as soon as Tamra said these things, instead of using it was a weapon.
50% of this episode was mainly flashbacks, which I love, but the editors dragged the CUT Fitness owner with every clip they could. By the end of the episode, Tamra was buried six feet deep under a pile of archive footage. Reality TV is a puzzle of those who instigate and those who react, without Tamra walking around OC with a massive ladle, there wouldn't be anything for these women to react to. Tamra used to be as reactive as Kelly but then she found Jesus and learned how to play the game, she's a producer's dream because she's doing their work for them. There's a reason Tamra has been around this long and that's because she's an All-Star Housewife, this is not the first Tamra gang up and it certainly won't be the last.
As entertaining as Kelly is, she can't be mad at anyone for talking shit about her because that's her specialty. Why can she call Vicki a pig constantly, say she'd only go to her funeral, hit numerous people over the head, call Gina ugly and tell a table of people to fuck off, but then be mad when everyone is talking about her? It's a two-way street and Kelly can't be mad at people throwing stones through her window when she's nuking anyone in her path. Everyone is outraged that Tamra revealed the train rumor, but in a fucked-up way she was really just doing the cunt caller a favor. Instead of Vicki going on for an entire season threatening to "expose" Kelly's secrets, Tamra got it out in the open from the beginning so they could squash it and move on. Period. End of story. Everyone wants to shit on Tamra but she gave the viewers what we wanted, if she never exposed the train rumor then we'd STILL be in the dark.
Aside from the Tamra Takedown of 2019, this episode also featured Gina taking her walking birth control to get haircuts. I don't want to see Gina's kids getting their hair cut, that's not why we watch Housewives, and annoying as her voice and relationship status are at times, I just feel bad for her. She's in a relationship with a narcissist who constantly guilt trips her for "ruining" their family when he's the one who stuck his dick in every THOT in LA. As much as Gina wants to move on, seeing her as a single mother to three children is tough and although she needs to put her happiness above her children, I completely understand why she would want to stay with Matt purely to help out with her kids.
However, the Long Island import has basically been a single mother since she's been on the show and even if Matt manages to pull her back in, he's going to go straight back to cheating on her in LA and she's going to be right where she started. Also, what the fuck happened to Matt's girlfriend? Last thing we knew he was dating the woman he had an affair with but now he's having sex with Gina again? I'm confused. This man only has loyalty to himself and him cheating on his new "girlfriend" with Gina should tell her everything she needs to know about that weasel of a man. She's stuck in an abusive cycle and I hope Gina can break it and get the fuck out for the sake of her and her children. Also, Gina was so drunk in her confessionals, I'm surprised she didn't pull a Kim Richards and fall off her chair.
Meanwhile, Emily is still in a loveless marriage. Her rodent of a husband tried to stuff her face with bread and then "sarcastically" shut her down anytime she tried to discuss their troubled relationship. Shane is the fucking worst and Emily crying in her confessionals about the way he speaks to her and not knowing what to do because of her children should be enough to make her divorce him for good. This is the worst marriage we have ever seen on the entire Housewives franchise, and if she isn't going to take the steps to divorce that asshole, then Bravo needs to send her on her way because I can't watch another season of him humiliating her on national television while she cries in her confessionals and then defends him in the press. As an early Christmas present can we send her divorce papers because this woman needs a divorce more than Braunwyn needs an Adderall detox.
The "he's just sarcastic" excuse has been way overdone. Shane, if you're reading this, you're not funny, you’re just a cunt. Raise your hand if this man has ever made you slightly chuckle? Exactly. The gay Mormon deflects anytime Emily tries to discuss their marriage to avoid talking about his emotions because he hates himself so much. No one who loves themselves would walk around as angry and toxic as this disgusting excuse of a human being does. Shane Simpson is a black hole and the only time he would feel joy is seeing his wife fall down the stairs. You can't fix this relationship, the only solution is divorce.
We can all play the blame game but everyone is wrong in this situation. EV-ER-Y-ONE. Tamra is wrong for blaming Braunwyn, Shannon is wrong for bringing up Kelly's bar fight, Kelly is wrong for telling Shannon what Tamra said, Vicki is wrong for being Vicki, Gina is wrong for whatever the fuck she did to her head, Emily is wrong for staying married to a gay Mormon and Braunwyn, well, Brown Wind doesn't know what the fuck is going on half the time so I guess we can excuse her this time. Can we officially rename The Telephone Game "The Tamra Game" because she plays it better than Vicki Gunvalson plays the victim.
The Real Housewives of Orange County airs Monday at 9/8c on Bravo. Stay tuned at Good Tea for our shady recaps and exclusive tea on the first ladies of Bravo!