The Real Housewives of New York City, affectionately known as RHONY, is a staple amongst Housewives fans. It’s known for the silliness, directness, and overall cohesiveness of its cast. However, viewers like myself have felt a void for the past few seasons, especially with the current one. The vibe just seems off, and it’s not for one particular reason or cast member. To be frank with you, RHONY has been on the decline for a while. It’s not that the show is necessarily boring, because there wouldn’t be so much social media conversation surrounding it if it were. However, there seems to be something missing with this season, and it’s been subtly happening for some time now. So the question that is on everyone’s mind is, what exactly is wrong with RHONY? Let’s take a deep dive into how the casting, direction of production, and the lack of resolution has put the show in an awkward place.
The cohesiveness of RHONY’s cast is what initially set it apart from other Housewives franchises. At its peak, the core cast members seemed to be an actual friend group, even if they were not necessarily friends before the show. The women would hang out when the cameras went down and when the show was in off-season. They would even grab dinner together after going in on each other at reunion. It made their on-screen chemistry absolutely fantastic and gave us arguably the best seasons of RHONY (7-10). I’ve never watched Sex and the City (and I probably won’t, so please don’t start), but I feel like they gave real-life SATC vibes: women with ambition who know how to have a good time.
And then, there was a shift. While The Real Housewives is supposed to depict women who are part of the same friend group, we know this is not the case anymore, especially for franchises that have been on for years. These women are hired to be friends, and honestly, they show it more and more as the season progresses. There’s no way in hell that the five main cast members on the show would hang out in real life. Ramona, Luann, and Sonja are used to their Upper East Side bubble. Leah and Eboni are used to dealing with women like the other three, but they don’t have enough in common to form a genuine friendship.
In essence, it feels like we’re watching two shows, one about women who like to have fun on the Upper East Side and another about women who have influence on NYC and its culture. They’re both amazing groups of women, but they all give off the vibe that they are contractually obligated to hang out with one another, and that makes for a disastrous season of Housewives. This is why you need that one person who acts incredibly enthusiastic about being there, the person you can tell loves doing the show and will welcome new people to the group. Someone who can be in a room with people from all walks of life and fit right in. The bridge between the veterans and the newbies.
That person was Dorinda. What are we doing here without her? She was the middle ground between Leah and Ramona when they would feud, and she also felt like the glue to the group. Her absence is incredibly felt this season, and Bravo would be out of their minds to not hire her back. Also, we’ve seen everything we could see out of Ramona, Luann, and Sonja. One of them has to go next year. They’ve done a lot for the show, but their stories are not as intriguing as they once were.
You Need Your Narrators
With all of the differences and the drama of any Housewives franchise, you need your narrators. Every city has them. They are usually the ones who come across as the individual(s) with the most common sense and the least amount of delusion. (The keyword here is *least* amount of delusion, as every Housewife has to have to be a little delusional and kooky. That’s why we love them.) But your narrators should also be neutral. During its peak (seasons 5-9), Carole and Bethenny were the narrators. And listen, I’m not a fan of the margarita lady—she runs her mouth about Black women a little too much for my liking. However, I do know that it’s hard to replace her presence on the show. Last season, the network tried to make Dorinda and Leah its narrators, which didn’t work because they were the two most embroiled in drama. This season, it’s setting up Leah and Eboni, which doesn’t work either because their conflicts this season are with the other three women. Their takes are obviously going to be more biased. To fill this void, production should have hired one more Housewife—someone unbiased, witty, and the most “calm” one in the group. Someone like Carole.
Conflicts Aren’t Resolved
Despite what some viewers might think, this isn’t the first time RHONY has tackled serious topics. As Eboni has publicly stated, RHONY has had conversations surrounding divorce, abuse, depression, alcoholism, financial loss, and the process of grieving, to name a few. However, the handling of these conversations is different this time around. In layman’s terms, production and the women made the space for these topics to be covered without awkwardness. They acted sympathetic to each other’s situations and seemed like they cared about what was going on in each other’s personal lives. That is not the case this season. We are watching these conversations unfold without resolution. Obviously, race is always going to be an ongoing conversation, but the way it’s being handled is what makes it hard to digest. It’s created this snowball effect of awkwardness, which then makes the viewing experience uncomfortable. What we used to love about RHONY is that the women would go all the way off on each other and then immediately hug and make up. Now, the “resolutions” we do get feel forced and disingenuous.
Conversations About Race
I feel like Eboni came onto the show wanting the women to understand her on a deeper level, being the only Black woman in their group of white women. She probably wanted the women to take a moment to step outside of their bubble and understand her. Imagine that you were hired as the first Black cast member on an incredibly popular reality show that only featured white women for 12 years straight. The show is set in one of the most diverse cities in our country, and you are filming your first season during one of the most critical elections in modern American history. On top of that, there is a global pandemic and a massive uprising for the rights of Black people. So, there’s going to be pressure. Not just pressure from viewers, but perhaps pressure that you put on yourself.
I don’t blame Eboni for wanting to see where the women stood on political and social issues. As someone who has been the only Black person in spaces such as academia and work, I tend to ask the same type of questions. To some, it’s taboo to talk about serious issues in formal settings, such as dinner parties. However, this isn’t a formal setting. This is The Real Housewives. These women are filming a show where they are paid to be a part of a specific friend group, and these conversations are vital in order for a friendship to start in the first place. The issue is, the women don’t give a f*ck because they’ve never had to experience racism, and therefore they don’t comprehend the severity of the conversations being had. From Luann repeatedly calling Eboni angry, to that god-awful conversation about the election with Ramona, Eboni has been put in a position in which she has to cater to white fragility.
As a Black viewer of the show, I do feel uncomfortable watching these conversations because not only does it look like the burden of having these conversations is placed on Eboni’s shoulders, but they’re also triggering to watch. Having to deal with white people constantly talking down to you in the most passive-aggressive way is overwhelmingly frustrating, mainly because if we are reactionary, we are labeled as “aggressive”. On the flip side, I do think these conversations could be enlightening to white and non-Black POC viewers of the show. This is an actual glimpse of what Black people, Black women in particular, have to deal with in workplaces that are predominantly white.
I’ve seen conversations from white people about how the political issues and social issues discussed are “ruining the show”, and to be honest, it puzzles me. I can understand why Black people might not want to watch such triggering conversations, but I can’t seem to wrap my head around white people blaming Eboni and her willingness to have these conversations for the demise of the show. It seems to me that the fragility that we’ve seen on the show has extended to its audience. When all is said and done, should the blame be on Eboni for the reported decline in ratings, or on the “offended” audience who can’t sit through a few uncomfortable scenes?
RHONY is iconic. You can’t deny the fact that the franchise has a stamp on pop culture. You also can’t deny that this season will probably go down in history as one of the most polarizing seasons in reality TV. I think that for RHONY to get back on track, some things need to happen. The network needs to rehire Dorinda and possibly the margarita lady. The production team needs a clear understanding of what direction they want the season to go in, and they need to give us more of a balance between the serious topics and fun. Finally, the fandom needs to realize that we will never have the glory days of RHONY and a lot of popular Housewife franchises back, and the demise of the show isn’t on one particular person.
Also, give Bershan an apple, she’s incredibly entertaining.
Obviously, a revamp, à la RHOC, can steer the show in the right direction. It’ll give us a refresh that the show desperately needs, while still keeping the overall vibe of RHONY that we love. However, if you are yearning for the glory days of RHONY, binge the old seasons online. Problem solved.
Image: Heidi Gutman / Bravo
If you’ve been watching Bravo shows like Real Housewives and Vanderpump Rules for years, you’ve probably come to terms with the fact that not all the cast members are great people. But usually that’s in the context of the show. It’s entertaining to watch someone be a nightmare on a group trip, but when that same person starts spouting ignorant nonsense on social media, it’s no longer fun.
A lot of Bravolebrities usually keep their views on real world events pretty quiet, but in the last week, pretty much everyone has posted in support of the Justice For George Floyd campaign, at the very least. And while some Bravolebrities have had amazing, inspirational responses to the current situation, some have really f*cked it up. Here are some of the Bravolebrity responses to what’s going on in the world right now, from the uplifting to the problematic.
Porsha Williams is the granddaughter of civil rights leader Hosea Williams, and she’s done his legacy proud over the last week. Last week, she peacefully protested in Atlanta with RHOA costar Shamea Morton, and spoke to a local news network about the need for justice. In the powerful clip, Porsha said “I may be well-known, but I am here to be a voice for the voiceless,” and demanded justice for George Floyd and greater change in black communities. Porsha has come a long way since the days when she thought the Underground Railroad was an actual train.
I swear the media is doing THEE MOST race baiting! If it wasn’t for social media, we wouldn’t have seen the peaceful protestors at all! Watch the news and it’s all violence and looting by people who are clearly not a part of the cause! Am I the only one seeing this? Frustrating!
— Monique Samuels (@iammrssamuels) June 1, 2020
Monique has been very active on Twitter over the past week, sharing her own thoughts as well as retweeting a lot of information and insightful commentary. She also brought attention to the elections happening in many states on Tuesday, which is important, because state and local elections have a direct effect on a lot of the issues at hand here.
To put it simply, Kelly Bensimon has been a disaster on social media this week. Multiple times, she’s posted something offensive or inaccurate, gotten called out, deleted the post, made a confusing apology, and then put up another offensive or inaccurate post. We’re all learning, and it’s okay to make honest mistakes, but Kelly’s posts just feel reckless and tone-deaf.
In this tweet from Monday, she shared a photo of peaceful protestors blocking a highway, claiming that it was a scene from the Hamptons in real time. She called for an end to the protests and loitering (lol, she meant looting), ignoring the whole reason why the protests are occurring. On top of that, this isn’t the Hamptons, it’s Connecticut, and the photo was from Sunday, not Monday.
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Despite making some bizarre apologies, Kelly obviously still doesn’t get it. On Thursday morning, she tweeted this graphic attempting to explain white privilege. In the tweet, Kelly called herself a “victim of how white privilege sounds” (not a thing), and also used a Blue Lives Matter hashtag. Kelly says that she’s learning, but any white person who thinks now is the time to call themselves a victim clearly hasn’t learned enough.
I’m a victim of how white privilege sounds. See below to help change the way we speak. #BlueLivesMatters pic.twitter.com/Edyx9wdtcr
— Kelly K. Bensimon (@kellybensimon) June 4, 2020
Kelly also doesn’t seem to understand the reasons Black Lives Matter exists and why it’s problematic to swap out “Black” with other words. Over the weekend, she posted an “All Lives Matter” tweet, which she later deleted. She’s apologized for the “verbiage mix up“, and has used #BlackLivesMatter in many subsequent posts. But then, today, she’s talking about Blue Lives all of a sudden? Yeah, no.
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The Real Housewives of Orange County is one of the more conservative casts on Bravo, so Braunwyn’s recent behavior has been a breath of fresh air compared to that of her costars. Braunwyn has joined peaceful protests multiple days this week, and even brought some of her children to a protest on Wednesday. She isn’t afraid to speak out, and her sign in this photo is really great: “There is a name for white people in OC who protest their ‘right to a haircut’ but stay silent when black lives are murdered: RACIST.” Damn.
Speaking of Braunwyn’s RHOC costars, this has been a trying time to follow Kelly Dodd on Instagram. She’s spent the last few months flying back and forth between New York and California, downplaying the danger of COVID-19, and even calling it “God’s way of thinning the herd.” Unsurprisingly, she’s been similarly problematic over the past week. In one Instagram story (which got deleted), she called protestors “animals” committing “terrorism on our land,” and opined that they don’t have problems like this in England (false, btw). Her words were completely disgusting, and though she’s pivoted to saying Black Lives Matter on social media, it’s hard to believe that’s anything more than a PR move.
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Eva has been one of the most active Housewives on Instagram this week, posting informational videos, voting PSAs, and inspirational messages daily. Her profile has become a valuable platform for updates, including multiple posts bringing awareness to fake protestors breaking windows and looting just to cause chaos. Eva isn’t taking any of this lightly, and her dedication to this cause has really been amazing to see.
More than most in the Bravo community, Katie seems to understand and accept the work that it takes to educate yourself and be a good ally. In addition to posting several times in support of Black Lives Matter, she’s also used her platform to spotlight black-owned businesses, anti-racist literature, and a Google Doc with hundreds of resources dedicated to dismantling systemic racism. Katie showed a hint of this understanding on this season of VPR when she called out the police prank as problematic, and she’s backing that up with action.
What is happening now has nothing to do with the tragic death of George Floyd – criminal looting is stealing – our businesses hurt by COVID don’t deserve this!!! You are blessed to live in the USA. Leave our small businesses alone!
— Taylor Armstrong (@TaylorArmstrong) June 3, 2020
Taylor Armstrong is the kind of person who makes me want to stay off of Twitter right now. While she’s repeatedly condemned the murder of George Floyd, she doesn’t seem to get the larger issue here. She’s tweeted many times about looting and the effect on small businesses, and yesterday she added that the protestors are “blessed to live in the USA.” Really? I’m sure I can think of plenty of people who don’t feel blessed to live in a country that has systematically oppressed them for centuries, and to even suggest that is incredibly tone-deaf.
In another tweet, Taylor suggested that, because she is part Native American, she understands “heritage issues.” I don’t really know what she means by that, but I’m going to stop thinking about it before I get any more angry.
Candiace Dillard Bassett
In a powerful Twitter thread from last week, RHOP’s Candiace Dillard challenged non-Black allies to do better, saying that “the oppressed cannot drive out oppression on our own.” She called out those she works with, saying, “I’m disappointed that amongst my white colleagues, who have no problem using their platforms to promote their businesses, their clothing lines, their restaurants and everything in between, there has been virtual silence.” In the week since Candiace posted this, many more people have shown their support and joined the conversation, but this is an important message to remember even when Black Lives Matter isn’t trending. Being an ally is a 24/7 job, not just when there’s a hashtag to share.
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My kids researched and found this peaceful protest that we attended today. It was organized by teenagers and was 2k-3k strong. My girls made our signs and wanted to be the 1st ones there. You have to talk to your children so that they understand because they too want their voices heard. #blmbethesda #justiceforgeorgefloyd
RHOP’s Gizelle Bryant has been outspoken on social media, and on Tuesday, she posted that she brought her daughters to a protest. She specified that her daughters did the research to find the protest, made their own signs, and wanted to be the first ones there, which makes my heart so warm. The children, they really are the future.
If you’ve watched even one episode of RHONY, you probably know that Ramona Singer is a piece of work, and her behavior this week has been… frustrating. After saying nothing over the weekend, her first comment on the current situation was in the form of an “all lives matter” comment. Oof. She was called out by many, including castmate Leah McSweeney, and deleted the comment. Since then, she’s posted a couple times, and said Black Lives Matter, but she’s been quiet since her Blackout Tuesday post. It seems like Ramona got the message about not saying All Lives Matter, but I’m not convinced she actually cares, or plans to do anything more meaningful. Not necessarily surprising, but it’s too bad.
The majority of the Bravolebrities haven’t been problematic this week, but he’s be honest, our expectations for them are pretty low. It’s good that only a handful have been out here spreading bullsh*t, but the vast majority of them could still do way more. These are just some of the best and worst examples, but if you want a more in-depth list of each Housewife’s posts, writer Tracie Morrissey has meticulously catalogued them in her Instagram Story highlights.
Images: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com; itstanyatime, bravobybetches, braunwynwindhamburke, musickillskate, candeegal09, ramonasinger, evamarcille, gizellebryant / Instagram; kellybensimon, taylorarmstrong, iammrssamuels / Twitter
After watching the Real Housewives for more than a decade, it feels like we know these women very well. From their love lives to their personality quirks, we see pretty much everything on camera. But aside from all the personal drama, one of my favorite things to see is where these women live. From gorgeous NYC apartments, to LA mansions, most of the Real Housewives live pretty fabulously. Maybe some of them don’t have as much money as they’d like you to believe, but they’re all doing okay.
But some of these women are doing a lot better than okay. A handful housewives really are loaded, and they have the second (and third) homes to prove it. I’m writing this from my very mediocre New York apartment, so I’m pretty impressed by anyone who owns even one house, and the thought of having multiple just blows me away. These are the Housewives with the most enviable vacation homes, and thankfully we have video tours to make you extra jealous.
Every season of RHONY gives us a little glimpse of life in the Hamptons, and if I had to choose one house, it would definitely be Bethenny’s. This five-bedroom house had an asking price of $3.2 million when she bought it back in 2015, and it’s easy to see why. Bethenny has great taste, there’s no denying it, except for the giant photo of a horse, which she says was the “first nice piece of art” she ever bought. I always forget Bethenny is a horse girl at heart. I especially love the kitchen, which is modern and chic, with some amazing red accents running throughout. As if this house isn’t nice enough, until earlier this year, Bethenny also owned a second “spare” house in the Hamptons, a historic former bed-and-breakfast, which she sold for nearly $2.3 million. Must be nice.
If we can’t have Bethenny’s house on RHONY, at least we can still have drunken weekends at Ramona’s. Ramona has owned her house in Southampton since the 90s, and keeping it was one of her major wins when she divorced Mario. I’m sure the house is worth millions, and last month, she rented it out for one month for $160,000. I’m sorry, but what do I have to do in life to have that kind of money? Ramona redid the house recently because she said the old decor felt “old and tired,” and her new kitchen has two dishwashers, because why not? She also has all Jill Zarin rugs, which I’m sure she bartered for. Aside from a basement that Luann insists smells like dog pee, the house looks great.
Camille Grammer comes and goes on RHOBH, but I’m constantly thinking about her gorgeous house in Hawaii. After she and Kelsey Grammer got divorced and sold their Hawaii home for a small sum of $11 million, Camille bought this place just for herself. The house is beautiful, but some of Camille’s decor touches are… eclectic. She starts her tour video leaning on a stone dragon, and she’s also obsessed with her giant gong. She also has the largest sectional couch I’ve ever seen, which has at least nine big cushions. Considering I was recently shopping for couches and could barely afford something used on Craiglist, I don’t want to know how much Camille’s couch cost.
Camille Grammer, Again
Don’t let anyone tell you that Camille Grammer isn’t living her best life. While she tragically lost her main Malibu home in the 2018 wildfires, she casually also owns a beach house in Malibu. She bought this house in 2016 for a cool $6.55 million, and was doing extensive renovations at the time of the fire. And now, she’s back to owning (at least) three homes, because she and her new husband David spent another $5.85 million on a house in LA’s bougie Brentwood neighborhood in 2019. Does Camille have the best real estate of any Bravolebrity? Perhaps. We haven’t really gotten to see the completed beach house renovations, but I’m sure it’s nice as hell, and hopefully there’s another big gong for her to hit.
A lot of people sleep on The Real Housewives of Dallas, but it can’t be denied that some of these women have serious money. In season 3, the ladies took a trip to Kameron Westcott’s home in Beaver Creek, Colorado, and it might be the most spectacular house on this list. Kam’s mother-in-law designed the house from the ground up in the early 2000s, so there’s no telling how much it cost, but nothing about it looks cheap. Kam say that all the wood in the house is from an old gold mine, which sounds haunted as f*ck. It’s tough to choose the most extra thing about this house, but I’ll go with the “Willy Wonka elevator” that has a glass ceiling. A close second place is the hot tub that you can literally ski right up to.
At this point, RHONY wouldn’t be RHONY without the annual trip to Dorinda Medley’s Berkshires home, Bluestone Manor. The house was her wedding gift from her late husband Richard (casual), and it cost $2.2 million back in 2005. Dorinda recently remodeled a lot of the interiors, and while most of the rooms l0ok elegant AF, there are still some quirky Dorinda touches that I can’t get over. Namely, a partially bejeweled taxidermy peacock. Dorinda says that for one phase of her life, bejeweled taxidermy was going to be her thing, but “nothing really ever came of it.” Hmm, can’t imagine why. Sadly, the new remodel means the infamous Fish Room no longer exists. Tragic, truly.
On Braunwyn’s first season of RHOC, we found out about her Love Shack, a special apartment “for debauchery” where she and her husband (and their friends) can get away from their seven (7!) kids. This isn’t technically a vacation home, but I can imagine that with that many kids, even getting away for a night feels like a vacation. Braunwyn describes the design aesthetic as “very romantic, a little bit dark… a very strong Asian influence that kind of reminded you of a Moroccan love den.” Um, can someone tell Braunwyn that Morocco is not in Asia? The apartment looks like if West Elm put out a Moulin Rouge! collection, and while it’s not my taste, I’m glad she can get away from all those kids.
I’m sure there are some other Housewives with beautiful second homes, and I would really appreciate if they let Bravo come film house tours ASAP. I will never turn down the opportunity to watch luxury videos that make me feel poor, so bring it on.
Images: PeopleTV, Bravo (5), DailyMailTV, E! News / YouTube
There are few people that abuse Facetune more than the Real Housewives of literally anywhere. Of course, the Kardashian/Jenners are the world’s worst offenders by far. But Housewives come in a close second. With all the fame and money, many of them are no strangers to surgically altering their appearance. But apparently, that isn’t good enough for them, so they take to using apps like Facetune to blur out every last little line and give themselves entirely new features and a scary cinched waist. I really could do this post with every single Housewife—I can’t even think of one that doesn’t use Facetune. But because I don’t have that kind of time, here is a selection of some of the worst offenders. This is your friendly reminder that what you see online is not reality.
Oh, Teresa. Teresa has been through some sh*t these past few years, and I applaud her strength and the way she’s kept it together for her four kids. Teresa has aged so well, you would never even guess she’s been to prison and endured such an unbelievable amount of stress. That said, even though I hardly see a single line on her face, Teresa takes it upon herself edit her photos by airbrushing her skin completely, painting her face a single shade of beige, making her eyes larger, moving up her hairline, and basically cutting off her entire nose. I’ve said it many times, but your facial features are what make your face your face. You can’t just get rid of your whole nose and think this is what you look like! Stop it, all of you! Also, there seems to be some v strange skin warping from the poor editing. No idea what’s happened there.
Ramona Singer really is basically ageless, she looks absolutely incredible. But this one really made me laugh. I mean, WHO IS THAT in her Instagram version? It doesn’t even look like her! I would have no idea who that is a picture of! It’s like a time warp of what Ramona probably looked like in the 80s! But no, she posted that as a recent photo. If you can’t tell what was done, Ramona erased every single line on her face, shrunk/completely changed her nose, enlarged her eyes and brows, and airbrushed herself beige. Why is it always beige?
I recently watched all of The Real Housewives Of Dallas, and can I just say, I CANNOT listen to LeeAnne talk about her inner child for one more second. I mean, enough, woman! Thankfully that chapter of Dallas is over, because LeeAnne decided to be a piece of sh*t and be racist. Let’s hope she’s learned something. That said, I’m surprised she doesn’t edit her photos more, but it seems like all she really uses Facetune for is to take the MS Paint bucket and color fill BEIGE all over her face. Seriously, have you ever seen a face so matte? It’s like a cartoon. This color must be the foundation default for Facetune because I don’t get it.
NeNe Leakes stars in this article series very, very often, and with good reason. I MEAN, look at her. Who IS this person she edits herself into? And for the love of God, why is she also beige?! NeNe regularly removes her nose, enlarges her eyes, makes her head larger, erases all skin tone and every line and pore, and narrows her face. At this point, should we just call this The Housewife Special?
When I found the real photo of Kyle, I was like, “Hang on, how old is she?” Kyle looks absolutely amazing. She has literally zero reason to use Facetune. Her skin is totally perfect and she has minimal lines. But then I went to her Instagram and found a Facetuned job. I actually had trouble lining up these photos, because as you can see, Kyle has almost zero nose in her own edit. I’m not sure why she thinks filtering herself orange, making her eyes like an anime doll’s, erasing half her nose, and airbrushing every single line is attractive, but I can tell you Kyle, you don’t need it! But hey, at least she’s more orange than beige? That’s new and different.
Because the beige thing is so ridiculous, I actually decided to swatch each of their skintones for you. Behold, the colors of our Real Housewives:
Guys, seriously, stop MSPaint Bucket-ing yourselves beige and accept that you have a nose. I mean, honestly. People are going to look back on this photos and be like, “What the F*CK were these people thinking?!”
Images: Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images; Johnny Nunez/WireImage via Getty Images; Michael Ostuni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images; Charles Sykes/Bravo (2); @teresagiudice; @ramonasinger, @leeannelocken, @neneleakes, @kylerichards18 / Instagram
I was minding my own business last night, watching old clips of The View and scrolling Instagram, when a hot tip popped up in my DMs. One of my Insta-BFFs Alex (@lexniko, she’s f*cking hilarious) sent me a side-by-side that almost made me fall out of my chair. It’s just…so stupid. Our beloved Jessica Alba, actress, model, and skin care mogul, made a hilarious mistake in her latest sponsored post, and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.
Here’s the post in question:
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I want my kids to be healthy, but let’s be honest cooking 3 healthy meals a day for 3 separate kids is … a lot! I don't shy away from doing the MOST but mamas got her limits. Regardless of our busy and sometimes hectic schedules, @culturelleprobiotics gives me peace of mind when it comes to supporting my kids' overall health and wellness with clean and trusted ingredients. #culturellepartner
If you can’t spot the issue, that’s because the issue isn’t anywhere in the actual photo. It’s just a normal ad for some probiotics, with Jessica posting in her kitchen with a nice array of products. Great natural lighting! She looks stunning! I might even buy some of the products! (I definitely won’t, but she doesn’t need to know that.) No, to spot the issue with this photo, we have to go back in time, all the way to 2018.
Enter: Kate Hudson. Last December, Kate announced that she was the latest brand ambassador for WW (formerly Weight Watchers). At the time, she had a two-month-old baby, so it made sense for her to share her post-baby journey with the WW audience. And of course, the partnership was launched with a beautiful photoshoot in Kate’s kitchen.
Except it wasn’t Kate’s kitchen. Look familiar? That’s because it’s the same f*cking kitchen that Jessica Alba is using for her probiotics spon. At the time Kate’s kitchen photoshoot came out, the pictures went mildly viral due to the absolutely insane arrangement of cutting boards behind her. Who has that many cutting boards?? Why are they so large?? How do you get one out without knocking over all the others? Truly so many questions, but Kate definitely doesn’t know the answers! She’s never cooked in that kitchen in her life!
It’s really no huge surprise that celebrities use studios or rented spaces to shoot some of their sponsored content, but this feels especially egregious. First, it’s an incredibly recognizable kitchen, especially with the slanted ceiling, exposed wood shelves, and once again, those wild cutting boards. But also, I feel like Kate Hudson and Jessica Alba must have a large amount of overlap in their audiences. They’re both 2000s actresses who have moved heavily into the lifestyle space, and their brands feel really similar. You’d think advertisers would want to be especially careful when planning these things. At least move the cutting boards!
Of course, this is far from the first time that a celebrity has made a careless error in posting sponsored content. This specific kitchen mixup reminded me of an instance with Melissa Joan Hart from last year. My girl Sabrina did some lunchmeat spon-con (bleak), and the company has two different brands. Instead of taking different photos for each one, Melissa posted the exact same photo, with the exact same food, and just switched out the placemats and packaging. You guys, it’s so bad.
Note: MJH posted these two photos BACK TO BACK on her feed. With the same caption! I have no idea who thought this was a good idea, but I still laugh every single time I look at these photos. Having worked with branded content, it’s honestly wild that the client approved this in the first place.
Another common issue that pops up with celebrity sponsored posts is the inability to figure out what to copy and paste. Basically, when you’re working with a brand, they’ll give you suggested copy to use for your caption, and there are usually some notes about what to add or change if you want to. Here’s an example of where RHONY’s Ramona Singer forgot to delete an entire paragraph:
You know it’s bad when you can’t even realize that the caption shouldn’t start with the words “here is the draft.” Ramona quickly figured this out and fixed it, but other celebrities like Naomi Campbell and Scott Disick have made the same mistake. This is truly just a careless thing to do, but it shows how little celebrities actually care about the products when they’re cashing major checks. 2019 is wild.
Jessica Alba probably has no idea that she’s posting in the same kitchen as Kate Hudson, and it’s honestly not even her problem. Someone else definitely booked the kitchen space for her, and they probably should have done a little more research. How am I supposed to think about probiotics when I can’t stop staring at those iconic cutting boards?! Either way, I’m sure she got a nice little paycheck from that photo, so good for her.
Images: jessicaalba, melissajoanhart, ramonasinger / Instagram; WW
If you’ve ever watched even one season of a Real Housewives show, you know that the most important element of the show is the group trip. Prepare yourself, because the Real Housewives of New York just took a cruise from hell. Over the years, the New York housewives have taken a wide variety of exotic trips, including St. John (aka Scary Island where Kelly lost her mind), Morocco (cue Luann saying “ya habibi” seven million times), and even the far-away land of Montana. But nothing could have prepared Luann, Ramona, Bethenny, and the gang for this trip to Colombia.
The ladies are currently filming for season 10, and they headed down to Cartagena, Colombia, presumably because one of them slept with someone who owns a fabulous vacation home there or some shit like that. There’s always a connection. From there, they were supposed to spend the day on a luxury yacht. This is usually the part of the trip where nothing really goes wrong: Ramona has her Pinot Grigio, Luann pretends to be reading a book, and Sonja is tanning while ass naked. Yaaaaawn. But this time, the day on the yacht turned into the boat trip from hell, and we seriously can’t wait to see it unfold on Bravo.
Let’s just say, the boat wasn’t as luxurious as it was supposed to be. Page Six reports that, to start with, “Once they were ushered on board, the boat couldn’t even move. The anchor got stuck, so the crew had to saw the anchor off before they could sail anywhere.” I’m already laughing my ass off from the thought of these women watching them saw off the anchor, and it gets so much better.
After leaving the dock, the engine on the boat reportedly caught fire, which like, isn’t supposed to happen. There was apparently no fire extinguisher on board, and the crew didn’t speak any English. Yikes. As if that wasn’t enough, the seas were very rough, and “the seats and other things on board that weren’t nailed down started flying about.” OKAY. So just picture Luann the fucking Countess on a boat that is literally on fire and there are seat cushions just fucking pummeling her in the face. Darling, it’s a nightmare.
According to the reports, the housewives were screaming, throwing up from seasickness, and genuinely convinced they were going to die like it was the fucking Titanic. Ladies and gentlemen, THIS is how you make reality TV. They were eventually rescued by a passing ship, but Bravo has reportedly offered the ladies counseling for their traumatic experience.
With this and Luann’s wild Christmas in Palm Beach, the next season of Real Housewives of New York City is shaping up to be an absolute shit show. Thanks to our lord and savior Andy Cohen, we’ll surely get to see the whole messy thing. Why do we love this shit so much?
Images: Bravo; Giphy (3)
Usually, I’m pretty bummed by the time the final episode of a Real Housewives of New York City reunion comes around, but this season, I’m so ready. These storylines kept my interest for as long as the Starbucks unicorn frappuccino did. (So, for less than 30 seconds.)
Anyway, the third episode of the reunion begins with a montage of the Housewives discussing dirty shit, but primarily butt sex. Apparently Tinsley’s ex-husband, Topper, called her out for talking about his dick on television. Tough break.
Tinsley: I talk too much.
I hate when I find myself relating to Tinsley, but I definitely understand how she feels after watching a highlight reel of herself getting drunk and talking about stuff she should probably keep private.
This gross little montage was a pretty nice way to segue into a discussion about Ramona and Bethenny’s feud, which began when Crazy Eyes asked B if her daughter, Brynn, knew about her being “naked in the press.” Bravo gives us a little video of Bethenny and Ramona fighting, and then being naked and crying and making up in the pool. Don’t you just love when reality television plot lines come full circle?
Then, since this feud was pretty much the only exciting thing to happen all season, they all have to spend for-fucking-ever
pretending to care talking about it.
A viewer writes in to ask why Bethenny got so mad at Ramona’s question instead of just answering it, to which she explains that she found Ramona’s inquiry to be ill-intentioned and offensive. She also calls Ramona out for lying about the timeline of events to justify her nosiness, and Ramona pulls out receipts. This bitch loves pulling out receipts at reunions. Like, she’s insane.
Ramona: I don’t read the press. *Whips out iPhone* I asked my friend to Snapchat me the date and she said it was when she was in the Bahamas!
Um… Ramona… are those green text bubbles? And I don’t think you’re using Snapchat correctly, but whatever. The two keep bickering and if you’re invested enough to actually continue to follow this back and forth, I’m not sure if I should applaud or pity you.
Ramona: I have been there for you for 10 years!
Bethenny: You brought me hummus when I was bleeding out. Thanks.
Finally, Andy starts asking some good questions, like whether Ramona was taking pills every time she was acting like an insane person. Obviously, Ramona says she was just drinking but nobody believes that. It’s pretty much Housewives reunion law to lie about the substances you took during the season.
Next up, they talk about the fact that Sonja treated Tinsley like an intern all season. I’m just like, gonna skip over that because this entire reunion is just a shit ton of “I never said that” and “yes, you did!”
Thankfully, talking about Mexico brings some much needed entertainment to this overall boring as hell episode. I am proud to report that the footage of Luann falling down never, ever gets less hilarious. Somehow, not a single person puked while the Housewives were in Mexico, which is a fucking miracle. They literally just got up and rallied everyday like total champions. Well done, ladies.
Bethenny: Pros play hurt.
However, I’d be willing to bet that at least one viewer felt nauseous during the entire time that Sonja was naked and trying to attack everyone.
Speaking of feeling ill, everyone plays the rose and thorn game again, and Luann is all like, “I got married!! In case anyone forgot!!” which again, is so sad because like… she’s really not married anymore.
Anyway, thank god this season’s over and we’re walking into the next one with a divorce in the cards. That’s usually pretty promising.
It’s the first part of the Season 9 reunion of Real Housewives of New York City, and for those of you who don’t watch Real Housewives religiously (how dare you), that means it’s finally the episode where they all kind of have to admit the shit we’ve been saying about them all season. It’s kind of a Bravo tradition that the first installment of a reunion is never the most exciting one, but everyone was super annoying this season, so there’s sure to be tons of brutal callouts. Plus, the reunion is at the Angel Orensanz Foundation, which might be the sickest venue that a Housewives reunion has ever had. So like, if you get bored, just look at the nice décor. Idk.
Although reunions are generally a time in which the cast is supposed to show some level of remorse for an entire season’s worth of heinous actions, I’d just like to point out that Tinsley is clearly rocking a “NO RAGRETS” attitude towards her constantly criticized horrible style. Homegirl’s dressed like the damn teapot from Beauty and the Beast.
Ramona is the first one to take the hot seat. (Which, again, if you’re new to Housewives reunions, isn’t an actual seat. The couch seating plan is basically as carefully thought-out and rigid as the cafeteria layout in Mean Girls.) Although this betch is certifiably crazy, you have to admit that she looks totally incredible. *Lindsay Lohan voice* I mean, everybody looks great tonight. Look at Ramona Singer, that dress is amazing and those hair extensions must have cost thousands.
Anyway, Ramona’s like, perfect proof that looks aren’t everything, because her highlight reel is cringeworthy AF. She basically has to sit on a couch with six other women and watch video footage of them talking shit about her. Yikes. At least Ramona can agree that she was totally batshit all season, though.
Ramona: Seeing it on TV, it’s like, holy shit, who is that woman?
Next Ramona addresses her plastic surgery history and talks about how she’s had her eyelids done, laser sunspot treatment and a boob job. But like, there’s got to be some drug that’s only legal in the Southern Hemisphere, or something, because this chick does not look 60.
Ramona claims that she’s definitely not as bad as she looked all season, but Bethenny is obviously here with some serious tea. She calls out Ramona for not acknowledging her assistant in an elevator the night before the reunion taping and before B can even finish detailing the run-in, Ramona’s immediately like, “well, when you grow up abused!!” Bethenny goes off on her and I am thanking the Bravo gods that the peaceful makeup between these two didn’t last. This shit is way more entertaining.
Ramona: Well, why didn’t they say hi to me?
Bethenny: They were INTIMIDATED! You got your tits hanging out! Your crazy eyes! You’re a horror show!
While Bethenny is on a roll of going off on people, Andy asks her if she’d ever be interested in opening a friendship with Jill Zarin. Skinny Girl is not fucking having it. She calls Andy out for asking her the same question literally every Watch What Happens Live, Hanukkah, birthday, anniversary, and reunion and he just like, switches questions.
Side note: Every single Housewife is in a relationship right now. So yes, girls, you, too can grow up to blackout on every possible occasion and still find love. Bless up.
Next up on the chopping board is Dorinda, who was totally my favorite this season. (I know that journalists are supposed to be like, objective or whatever, but if the New York Times is allowed to straight-up be like “Yo, FUCK Trump,” then I think it’s okay for me to say Dorinda is my favorite, right?)
I kind of forgot about the fact that a big chunk of Dorinda’s storyline this season was focused on her feud with Sonja, because it was so effing boring. However, I’m pretty glad we got to see the “CLIP! CLIP! CLIP!” clip again, because it’s definitely a phrase that is going to go down in Housewives history.
Dorinda tries to explain what that actually meant, but the truth is that it was basically just nonsensical, drunk word vomit.
Dorinda: I couldn’t stop the verbal waterboarding.
Dorinda had some pretty legendary one-liners this season, including referring to Sonja’s vagina as the Holland Tunnel. LOL. Sonja starts to try to defend her Holland Tunnel, but everyone cuts her off because we all know there’s really no point in that.
A viewer sends in a question asking Dorinda if she finds it hypocritical that she always calls Sonja out for being drunk all of the time, even though she is usually so smashed herself that she needs subtitles. Dorinda’s just like, “nah, I don’t pretend that I don’t love to drink, like Sonja does.” And, THAT, my friends, is why she is my favorite Housewife this season.
The final Housewife to get roasted this episode is Luann, and I’m actually concerned that I might have pulled an extraocular muscle rolling my eyes during this part. She basically just goes on her typical marital bliss rant, which is just so sad to watch because we all know that she just recently announced that she’s divorcing Tom.
Luann: Right now, I like being Luann D’Agostino
Literally everyone else: Um… right now? Not forever?
BTW, apparently Luann is wearing the dress from her wedding rehearsal dinner.
It’s finally revealed that Sonja did in fact receive a save the date to Luann’s wedding, but then she started talking shit in the press about good ol’ Lu, and the former Countess held back the real wedding invitation. So, even though Sonja is totally nuts, she wasn’t lying about the fact that she technically was invited to the wedding.
Andy: Has anyone heard anything about Luann and Tom since they got married?
Everyone goes silent. Lol, yikes.
Bethenny goes off on a tangent about how talking about Tom’s “indiscretions” is basically as pointless as talking about Trump’s tweets, which is a pretty valid point.
As far as the first part of reunions go, this one wasn’t totally horrible, I guess.