SORRY NOT SORRY (RHOC SEASON FINALE RECAP)
As the end-of-season stills flashed across the screen, announcing that Kelly has filed for divorce from Michael, Shannon has separated from David, and Tamra is re-estranged from her teenage daughter, you would imagine that we just wrapped up an emotionally gripping journey, rife with duplicity, treachery, and infidelity. You’d turn to your best friends attending your glamorous watch party—all of you intensely invested in the triumphs and sorrows of this group of 21st century women—and you’d toast the Real Housewives of Orange County for holding up a mirror to the bliss and wretchedness of the human condition.
But RHOC was much less than its end-of-season stills, and as I lay on my couch in a pair of sweatpants from Zellers, a now defunct Canadian Kmart, fighting off acute bronchitis by guzzling codeine and decaf tea, I thought to myself, “The most exciting moment this season was when the ladies sampled fermented shark and hated it.” Honestly, that scene was funny, truthful, suspenseful, (would they insult their Icelandic host by rejecting his food? Spoiler alert: YES) and ultimately human. The rest of this season has been the theatrical equivalent of bad stomach cramps. You know something explosive will make it all better but all you’re producing are feeble squeaky farts.
Speaking of feeble, we kick off the finale at Vicki’s insurance company, where she and her partner offer her son, Michael, a seat on the board of directors. We’re then treated to a montage of Michael working his way up from loveable scamp to someone who has just made partner at a small insurance company. The montage is as exciting as you imagine. Michael’s professional trajectory was not part of this season’s storyline, but when you’ve devoured all the marshmallows in the Lucky Charms box, sometimes you just have to eat the cereal.
Across town, Kelly surprises her mother with a makeover. Normally, it looks like her mother puts on makeup in the dark with crayons, so this is pretty sweet of Kelly. But Kelly just wants an opportunity to whine to a captive audience about her husband, Michael. Kelly hates Michael and Michael hates Kelly. It’s like they totally forgot why they married each other--boobs and money.
Meanwhile, Tamra is getting ready for her daughter’s graduation. Her daughter hasn’t spoken to her in years so when her daughter invites her to the ceremony, Tamra is deeply moved and hopeful. Tamra’s son tells her to just “be chill” about it; advice which Tamra promptly forgets because Tamra posts pictures of the ceremony on social media, which was explicitly forbidden by her daughter, so now they are re-estranged. This part wasn’t filmed on the show but I spent a lot of time researching this on the internet because I’ve got my priorities straight and I live a full life.
And now for the climax of the episode: Meghan King Edmonds hosts a fancy candle party where she launches her line of King Candles. She’s a mom, a wife, a candlestick maker, and certifiably the most boring cast member on this show. A modern woman, doing it for herself, and definitely not for her husband, Jim, who wonders how he went from beloved baseball player to deplored RHOC husband.
Shannon and Kelly, who have renewed their friendship through a mutual love of vodka and hatred of their respective husbands, share a limo with their husbands to the candle party. Both women drink and both men stare at the floor, contemplating which page of their real life ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ led them to a BravoTV-sponsored candle party.
And then the candle party turns into Yom Kippur with everyone apologizing for their wrongdoings.
Peggy apologizes to Meghan for insulting her parenting style. Kelly and Peggy apologize to each other for fighting in Iceland. Diko apologizes to David for confronting Shannon about questions David asked him about Peggy’s cancer. Tamra apologizes to Diko for calling him a “little bitch” for confronting Shannon. Then Tamra apologizes to Peggy for calling her husband a “little bitch”. Tamra says ‘little bitch’ about 50 times and it seems like she is just apologizing so she can say “little bitch” over and over. Peggy tells Tamra she wasn’t actually hurt by David’s questioning and that Shannon exaggerated how upset Peggy and Diko were about the situation. Camera footage tells us this is a lie. Peggy told Shannon that she was hurt by David’s questioning a few dozen times. Tamra calls Shannon over and Shannon goes full hyena, hollering about Peggy being a liar, but with all the screeching and gesticulating and crazy eyes, she loses all credibility. Peggy might not seem well read but she definitely has memorized The Yellow Wallpaper because she’s an expert in mentally torturing Shannon.
Lydia is also at the party, smiling wide-eyed, brushing her hair with a fork and talking to a guppy.
THESE. WOMEN. SUCK. Also, so do their husbands. So does this show. But I can’t wait for the reunion.