HOT OFF THE PRESSES! Coming to you LIVE from my hotel room. The reigning queen (and my personal idol) is leaving The Real Housewives of New York City. Bethenny Frankel. We have seen her on RHONY since it first aired 2008, then she left to do her own spinoff and talk show for a few years, only to triumphantly return to us in 2016. But this time, her leaving feels final. And personally, I need some time to process this news.
When we first met Bethenny back in 2008 she was considered by some cast members “the underdog.” She wasn’t married, didn’t have children, and was out here trying to make something of herself. She came in hot with her one-liners, and quickly befriended Jill Zarin. But Bethenny was a force from the jump. She doesn’t take sh*t, period. And when she had an opinion, we heard it. She was a breath of fresh air, and the no bulls*t Greek chorus of the show.
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I wanted to take a moment to write a personal note to you. I am so grateful to you for sticking with me through everything. You started this journey with me in my tiny apartment in my late 30s, wondering what would happen to me. I was broke, single, had no family and no idea what the future held. I had big dreams and I never stopped, but I honestly didn’t know if I would ever get here. You helped me to get there. I would read your letters and messages and grow from your struggles. You would give me your honest opinion about my products and projects and helpful advice about divorce, relationships, motherhood, miscarriages, health, and surviving the death of a loved one and almost my own. You have shared your ideas with me and I have been inspired by and learned from you. I am fortunate to have created a business and career that some people only dream of. I had a beautiful baby girl who is now 9 years old, and she has changed me as a human being. I was able to give back and help people all over the world who have been hit with the worst of unforeseen circumstances, which we will all continue together. GO for it. Whatever it is. Reach for your dreams in life and love and make the impossible happen, because it can happen and it WILL happen. Come from a place of yes and it’s yours for the taking. Thank you so much for your love and support. And stay tuned, you haven’t seen the last of me. There are many amazing things to come. I love you all and am so lucky to have you in my life! PS: New York City is still my playground. . ♥️xo♥️ . B
Throughout her tenure on the show we have seen her ups and downs—her pregnancy, the breakdown of her marriage to he who shall not be named, and finding HUGE success with her company SkinnyGirl. (Which btw, she sold for a record-breaking $100 million dollars.) Mind you, when she started RHONY she has said she only had $8,000 to her name. Business. Woman. Goals.
Variety broke this devastating news, and at first I thought, this is untrue, she wouldn’t do this to us. But then it read “it’s time to move on and focus on my daughter, my philanthropy and my production partnership…”. *cue jaw drop* As Luann de Lesseps once said, “How could you do this to me, question mark”. RHONY is truly an ensemble cast. They have perfected the art of reality television, and I personally don’t know what it is going to be like without her. Bethenny then confirmed her departure in an Instagram post, which you can find above.
Some of you may ask—why are you taking this news so hard? Why are you sitting in your hotel room and pondering life’s existence? Well, if you must know (going to get deep for a minute), honestly, because Bethenny is more than just a housewife to me. She is someone I look up to and admire. Someone I relate to in the most chaotic ways. Maybe it’s because we are both Scorpios, but she is a complex female character and moves through life unapologetically. Personally, I think the most interesting thing about Bethenny is that she is self aware in a way we rarely see in life or on The Real Housewives. She is hyper-cognizant of how she comes across, and even in her most manic states, she recognizes that. Bethenny never deflects her behavior onto someone else, and that is something I will definitely miss. Also, her ability to go from 0 to 100 in a matter of minutes is great TV. Her old BFF Carole Radziwill once said “she’s either wound tighter than a top, or crying”. That sums her up perfectly.
What makes her exit different than Vicki Gunvalson’s recent demotion on RHOC is that Bethenny left at her peak. Last season was a great season for Bethenny, and we got to see a softer side to the tough B. She was still trying to cope with the loss of her longtime on-and-off boyfriend/best friend Dennis. Still, every single week she delivered iconic lines, snarky confessionals, and humility. Vicki, on the other hand, was demoted because RHOC has been struggling the last few seasons. (That’s a conversation for another time though.)
I will finish this up by saying what every celebrity public relations firm advises their clients to say after a break up: “I wish her nothing but the best and I enjoyed our time together. Please respect my privacy at this time”. But also don’t, because I just looked up how to get cookies delivered to me so I can eat my feelings. I am reeling.
Images: Shutterstock; bethennyfrankel, betches / Instagram
Season 10 of The Real Housewives of New York City won’t finish airing for a few more weeks, but the season 11 cast is already getting a shakeup. On Wednesday, Carole Radziwill announced that she’ll be leaving the show after six seasons. That’s right, our favorite writer girl is giving up her apple. RHONY is truly one of the best shows on television, and Carole’s departure will really change things. I have a lot of thoughts, but first let’s look at the statement that Carole gave to PEOPLE.
“After six seasons on Bravo’s RHONY, I have decided to return to what I do best — journalism and producing. I am sure this does not come as a surprise to any of the viewers, all of whom have been supportive, encouraging, and kind. My original curiosity about reality television has waned over the years and I am focusing on TV and writing projects that better suit my more steady temperament. I have worked with amazing producers, made great friends, and I’m thrilled to leave frenemies behind. I will remember this entire experience with delight, humor, and a veracious accuracy. Next.”
To be honest, I haven’t really been feeling Carole this season, but this statement is perfection. It gives an actual reason for her leaving, while also throwing a generous amount of shade at her “frenemies” (read: Bethenny) and basically the whole concept of reality TV. Carole hasn’t really talked about being a writer for the last couple seasons, but clearly she still has a way with words. My personal favorite part is when she says she’ll remember her time on the show with “veracious accuracy,” which basically means “everything that went down is on video forever, so don’t try to make me the villain once I’m gone.”
If you’re paying attention to the current season of RHONY, you’ll know that Carole’s main storyline has been how her friendship with Bethenny Frankel fell apart. To be honest, I’ve found the whole thing incredibly boring, because who cares if these women are friends in real life? The whole reason I watch Bravo is to see rich women yelling at each other, so I’m not mad if two of them suddenly can’t stand each other anymore. Also, in the world of RHONY, going against Bethenny is always tough. She’s like, the favorite, most successful child of Andy Cohen, so Bethenny is probably always going to get the good edit. But instead of rehashing this dumb drama with Bethenny, let’s reminisce on the best of Carole Radziwill.
The best thing about Carole is her dry sense of humor, and how she’s never been afraid to laugh at her ridiculous fellow housewives. Luann couldn’t stand Carole for a couple seasons after Carole started dating Lu’s niece’s ex Adam, but Carole really couldn’t care less. I don’t blame her, Adam is hot AF.
Carole shining a light on Luann’s life and choices:
My favorite Carole throwback is the infamous Book-gate of season six, when she and Aviva spent half a season arguing about who did or didn’t use a ghostwriter for their books. While we never really got to the bottom of this (and who tf cares?), it was enormously entertaining, and brought out Aviva’s true crazy for everyone to see.
Carole will definitely be missed after six years on the RHONY reunion couch, but it makes sense that she’s leaving. She actually had a real career as an author and journalist before the show, and fighting with Bethenny on camera probably feels like a waste of her time. We still have a few more episodes left with Carole, and a final reunion that’s sure to be explosive. The ladies of NYC always know how to bring the drama, so this time will be no different.
Images: @caroleradziwill / Instagram; Giphy (2)