RHOC Episode 11 Recap: One Big Bust

Michael and Kelly are making a plaster mold of Kelly’s boobs before she gets a breast reduction. She wants a tangible reminder of how big they once were, and Michael is happy to oblige her (and give the neighbors and beachgoers a peep show) by slathering plaster strips over her chest on the balcony of their home. They discuss Kelly’s upcoming beach volleyball party, and the fact that Meghan was not invited. Kelly thinks Meghan is stirring the pot with her because she’s jealous that Kelly is friends with everyone. I’m pretty sure no one is jealous of Kelly for being friends with Vicki, Tamra and Shannon. Those three a chore, to say the least.

Tamra meets Lydia to pump her for dirt on Vicki’s party. Specifically, to hear what Gretchen and Tamra’s former BFF Ricky said about Eddie. Tamra is incredulous that Vicki just invited her to coffee so they could clear the air, then turned around and invited Tamra’s enemies to her party. And salivated with delight when they confirmed the rumor that Eddie is gay–the very (latest) reason Tamra and Vicki’s friendship went sour in the first place. Even Lydia is confused by Vicki’s motives at this point. Tamra fakes cries over how upsetting this gossip is for her kids, but is a rumor that their stepfather is gay more discomfiting than seeing their mother and her then-paramour have sex in a bathtub? Seems pretty harmless in comparison.

Briana sums up the world’s feelings on the subject in her response to Vicki’s report on the Gretchen/Ricky/Eddie conversation: “Oh my God, WHO CARES?” Vicki as usual holds herself blameless in the situation, and uses a flawed and overly simplistic analogy to support her position. She blusters that if she tells someone about a car accident, it doesn’t mean she caused the car accident. No it doesn’t, but Vicki would run around telling people there was a car accident whether it was true or not if it meant she would get some attention. And she would never just say there was a car accident and leave it at that. She would make it as salacious as possible by speculating that one of the drivers was drunk or high or getting a blow job. Vicki will do or say absolutely anything for attention, and if that means spreading rumors about a car accident, or Eddie’s sexuality, or any other tidbit of information that comes her way, she will not hesitate to do it.

Vicki’s pathological immaturity is never more pronounced than when she is talking with Briana. She leans on her daughter for support, but pouts or sputters defensively if Briana doesn’t blindly and completely validate her. What an exhausting pain in the ass this woman is.

Back to Lydia and Tamra, where Tamra throws her friend Shannon under the bus at the first opportunity. Lydia doesn’t like Shannon and thinks she is high maintenance, which Tamra immediately confirms by saying Shannon calls her 25 times a day. Cut to Shannon talking to the business partners for her restaurant while struggling to open an email attachment they sent her. She has a “branding team.” Is there anything more annoying than the business-y buzz phrases people use to try to sound competent? Using phrases like “branding team” makes you sound basic AF and like you’re trying to confuse people into thinking you’re saying something when you’re actually saying nothing. Shannon’s restaurant, like her marriage, has disaster written all over it.

Peggy is at her doctor’s office for another pre-reconstructive surgery appointment, and I couldn’t care less. Peggy should know by now that she had a double maSTectomy and not a double maSSectomy.

Lydia and Doug have a vasectomy consultation and, again, I couldn’t care less. How is Lydia so squeamish around drag queens and talk of infidelity yet has no problem with telling a national TV audience she wants her husband to “cut his balls off?”

It’s time for Kelly’s volleyball party, and as with every party this season, Tamra and Vicki are nervous about seeing each other. Yawn. Shannon makes a fool of herself during the volleyball game, her trash talking rendered ridiculous by her subpar athleticism. Everyone repairs to Chez Dodd for boob-themed food and cocktails (apparently the volleyball party is intended to be a send-off for Kelly’s enormous implants. Either that, or a kegger at the Sig Ep house) and Vicki/Tamra drama.

Vicki is talking to Kelly and Tamra is talking to Peggy about–what else?–the friction between Tamra and Vicki. Peggy, in her one and only perceptive moment so far this season, says Tamra and Vicki need to hash it out with each other because she’s tired of the subject and doesn’t want to talk about it anymore. Amen, Peggy.

Tamra, fake crying again, claims to be confused about whether or not she should talk to Vicki. Lydia urges her to do it, while Shannon warns against it. Vicki tells Kelly she doesn’t need to sit down with Tamra because Tamra is no longer in her brain. Steve scoffs at this, correctly pointing out that Vicki’s tiny little pea brain is consumed with Tamra 24/7. As always, I’m mystified by Steve’s association with Vicki.

Lydia tells Vicki she needs to come talk to Tamra because Tamra is “bawling” in the kitchen. That’s a bit of an overstatement. Tamra is trying to squeeze out some fake tears for the producers, which is a far cry from bawling (pun intended). Vicki enters the kitchen, guns blazing, insisting she didn’t invite catty queen Ricky to her birthday party. Tamra, Vicki and Kelly take it to Kelly’s bedroom, where Vicki laughably tells Tamra she almost cost Vicki her life and her business by calling her a con woman. How can Vicki possibly think that everyone doesn’t see her for the swindler she is? Tamra had nothing to do with it.

In the kitchen, Shannon hears Vicki bellowing and feels compelled to run to Tamra’s rescue. Lydia and Peggy follow, for no discernible reason except to rubberneck and get screen time. Vicki is screaming at Tamra for calling her a liar, and Tamra–calmly, for once–begins to explain that lying about cancer makes you a liar. Vicki interrupts to lie that she didn’t lie about cancer, and threatens that the next time someone accuses her of it, she’s going to go ballistic. So Shannon accuses her of lying about cancer. Instead of going family-van ballistic, Vicki resorts to her garden-variety screeching to proclaim she doesn’t lie. She’s on an ethics committee, so that should prove she doesn’t lie. Is this an insurance industry ethics committee? Insurance company practices are the exact opposite of ethical, and I’m sure many people are highly paid to find ways for insurance companies to avoid anything approaching moral or ethical behavior. So it’s fitting that Vicki Gunvalson would sit on an insurance industry ethics committee.

Shannon’s long lost dignity resurfaces for a moment as she tells Vicki she is no longer affected by her antics. Good for you, Shannon! Too bad the moment is fleeting. Having abandoned her “friend-whispering” efforts with a hysterical Vicki, Lydia joins Tamra and Shannon to insinuate herself into their conversation. When Shannon yet again brings up her weight gain and Vicki’s role in it, Lydia thinks Shannon is making everything about herself.

Peggy tells Shannon she is “something else,” and when Shannon prods her into elaborating on the statement, Peggy equivocates by saying she meant that Shannon is “vocal.” An altercation is avoided as Shannon appears to accept this explanation, but another one is brewing.

Kelly brings out her plaster breast bust and the talk turns to boob jobs. Lydia reluctantly admits that she had one, but doesn’t feel comfortable discussing it in a room full of men. Lydia’s sensibilities are very random, aren’t they? She notices Shannon squeezing Tamra’s leg under the table during this conversation, and somehow interprets it as Shannon making fun of Lydia. Shannon tries to explain that her leg-squeezing was because of Peggy’s comments about her and had nothing to do with Lydia, but Lydia doesn’t believe her and tells Shannon she’s done with her.

Lydia is a gaslighter. While it’s true that Shannon has a tendency to go off the rails, she was being calm and reasonable in this instance, and Lydia kept calling her crazy, which of course caused Shannon to lose it. Lydia was the one who misconstrued Shannon’s gesture and escalated the situation, but by insisting Shannon was causing drama, Lydia was the one who actually created the drama. I’m officially sick of Lydia.

Next week: Kelly gets her breast reduction, and it looks like she gets into it with Peggy. I’m actually looking forward to a classic Kelly Dodd-style takedown of Peggy, and hope the preview isn’t just another teaser for a whole lot of nothing.





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