Tonight is part one of the Big Teresa Fight, which is now a tradition for every season. Before we get to that, we have Caroline, the most respectable of the housewives, preparing for her new radio show on Radio Jersey, “Caroline Rules.” Looks like she got the gig.
Her friend comes over to help her practice, and I swear she’s the Puerto Rican/Italian doppleganger of Caroline’s sister Dina. Anyone else notice that? Aw, I miss Dina and her red hair thread and Grandma Wrinkles.
Not!Dina pretends to call in as Teresa, except not as shrill. Caroline gives good advice (quit being arrogant, bend a little facrissakes, Guhbless.) I would listen to this call in show every day, are you kidding me? It’s like having Olympia Dukakis mashed with Sophia Petrillo telling Jersey girls everywhere to snap out of it and fa the love of ya muthahs, put some panties on, what are you, a hoo-ah?
The friend brings up an alleged auction for all of Teresa’s belongings (how embarrassing, and what a “friend” to dish about it on camera) to satisfy an alleged bankruptcy settlement, and they flash on some of the items. Ugh, the furnishings are so not my taste. Massive gilt-framed mirrors (like 13 feet by 10 feet huge,) brocade this and that, nude-damask covered chairs with ornately carved feet, crystal chandeliers, gaudy gold and champagne colored shit everywhere. Seriously, I’m waiting for one of these women to pick up Mid-Century chic. Or at least something a bit more modern than all of the gold-painted trim. This ain’t Louis XVI France, you’re in Jersey.
Caroline cuts this off and says that at the end of the day, all that matters is your health and having your family. Anything else is just stuff. Hear, hear! Of course, that’s easy to say when you have your health, your family, and all the same leopard-covered brocade draped stuff, I’m just saying.
Jesus Spice is in the main room of their house, the master closet. “We’re making peace today, thank you, Jesus!” There are ornate crosses hanging in the closet, as well as a trio of them over the bed. OKAY WE GET IT, YOU HAVE A HARD ON FOR CHRIST. (I would like that bumper sticker, “hard on for the Lord,” and a picture of a follower in ecstasy.) Joe needs her to dress him (like actually take the shirt off the hanger, unbutton it, etc.) before he heads out to meet his sister.
He puts half of the shirt tails under the waist band, the rest hangs out as she puts on his bracelets and necklaces. I’m not making this up. I’m sure she checked his fly and did the velcro stays on his trainers, he’s not graduated to double knots yet. (Rabbit goes around the tree, through the hole!) I was sad she didn’t pin his restaurant order on his shirt, what if he doesn’t remember he’s allergic to lima beans?
Tre also gets ready to finally have it out with Bro Joe, and of course has to say that everything was fine until her brother got married. Melissa takes what Tre says and twists it. “A wife makes it, a wife breaks it.” I don’t know what it is about Jersey, but people talk in these talk-show quotes all the time. “It is what it is.” “You wanna make an omelet, you gonna break a lot of eggs.” But Teresa usually gets the words mangled, which is my favorite. Keep your eyes peeled, they’re coming.
Bro Joe shows up with the letter Teresa wrote (and a laminated sheet bullet-pointing all of Melissa’s problems with her. WOW. I like that it’s laminated, in case someone’s temper got the best of them and they tried to tear it up. Not gonna happen on Jesus Spice’s watch!) All Joe wants is for Tre to own up what’s she’s done, and we, the viewers really aren’t sure what that is.
OK, he wants her to clarify what she meant by “I’m sorry for what I’ve done,” in her letter. What’s that? Articulate, please. She gapes for a minute. He tries again.
“You’re sorry how? How are you sorry? You’re sorry, what, because you did something? How are you sorry?”
“Sorry fucking how? You mean, let me understand this ’cause, ya know maybe it’s me, I’m a little fucked up maybe, but you’re sorry how, I mean sorry like you’re a clown, with the flower and the water works? You’re here to make me laugh, you’re here to fuckin’ amuse me? What do you mean sorry, sorry how? How are you sorry?”
“I don’t know, Joe, I’m just… I’m sorry?”
“Sorry for ruining my son’s Christening by trying to what, congratulate me? You think that’s acceptable behavior?”
OK, they didn’t go all Goodfellas, and Joe actually wins me over here by saying it like it actually is.
Here’s the breakdown (as I see it, and I’m an armchair psychiatrist, so you should totally trust me. Here, let me write you some prescriptions while I’m at it.) Tre and Joe were really close. Not Flowers in the Attic close, but close. She got married, the Joes were Bros, and Teresa bragged to her husband all the time about how great Bro Joe was doing. Maybe Juicy wasn’t making the cash Bro Joe was, but it started to rankle.
Then, Bro Joe hooks up with Melissa (they moved in together after two months, were married a few months later, Bro Joe’d had two heavy engagements – wedding plans made kind of heavy – that broke off unexpectedly.) and Bro Joe has a big house by now, buys Mel nice things, and maybe Teresa keeps telling Juicy how great her brother is doing.
Following? Teresa is essentially doing that passive aggressive shit about how she wants more more more to her husband, who tries to keep up with the Gorgas. So he’s not feeling too keen on her brother, because it’s putting a strain on him. And maybe Juicy was getting snappish with Tre, who then turns it onto Melissa, because Melissa is getting all of the things she wants.
Bro Joe says, and I’m not exaggerating the accent, “Problem is, you’s a both the same way. You’s a like-ah the same things, you’s a both flashy, so it got a little competitive.”
Later it’s revealed that Melissa made a joke to Teresa when she came into the picture that she met Bro Joe, saw his huge house and nice cars, and she “wasn’t stupid.” So Teresa doesn’t like that maybe her brother married a gold digger (she ain’t messin’ with no broke, broke.) Even though after 6 years they’re still all over each other, have three kids, they’re in it for the long haul. But Teresa won’t let shit go.
There’s some back story on Jesus Spice that, I gotta be honest, makes me respect her. Her father died when she was 17, she got three jobs to put herself through college, was doing everything on her own. Good for her! She met a guy that fell in love with her, liked how strong she was – admired that – and wanted to make her a traditional wife. She wanted babies, she seemed to be into him, they marry, badda boom, sounds good. Maybe it’s just one of those situations where no one is going to be good enough for Teresa’s baby brother, right?
So all of this comes out from Joe and he says to his sister, just say you fucked up. Let’s just acknowledge it and move on. Instead of seeing how EASY that would make it, Teresa still can’t get her head on straight and tells him how upset she is for not hearing a “congratulations” from him on either of her books. Oh, and he doesn’t come to her book signings.
“How the hell am I supposed to know about them?”
“It’s on Facebook!”
“I WORK. I’m not on the internet.”
(I’m really liking this guy, what is going on with me?) He chastises her for not making an effort with his kids, she’s just selfish, end of story. She blurts things out rudely without regard for people’s feelings, case in point, the god damn sprinkle cookies. Tre has no idea how hurtful CookieGate was to his wife.
Tre doesn’t care because Mel is a vile human being for sending her a card that congratulated Tre and Juicy on their “redone”” home, like they are slingblade mother fuckers putting the babies in dirt ditches with mustard sandwiches. To the affluent Franklin Lakes types, saying “redone” is the equivalent of crossing the 17th parallel.
BUT WAIT, IT GETS BETTER.
And by better I mean even more head meets desk. Before the “redone” bullshit, Teresa sent Mel and Joe a card after they built their (even bigger) home that said (what is even happening in humanity even more, you guys) that the only reason they got their house completed in a year is because Bro Joe got a loan.
IS THIS CODE? I am so lost. First, who the fuck mentions financing in a congratulatory card, second, why would you mention someone’s financing in a card, and third, who the fuck doesn’t get a loan to remodel/rebuild a house? Not everyone is
in the mob holding on to a few million in cash to pay contractors, the average person visits a bank, am I right? THIS IS ALL VERY STRANGE TO ME AND I AM SOMEWHAT AFFLUENT. Meaning, we pay our bills without stress, have vacations, have savings, own our cars. And we got a loan to put in a pool like normal people do.
But I would have cut you with a shiv if you dared to send me a card congratulating me on have a pool simply because we got a loan. (LOL, this is crazy, right? I mean, you all see this is crazy?)
Joe is just sad that the kids are suffering, and now I am officially on Team Jesus Spice-Gorga. Tre influences their parents and as a result Joe’s kids don’t have the relationship with their grandparents they should. He says, and this was the clincher for me, “I don’t care if I married a whore, those kids are blood, and that phone should be ringing every day.”
Aw, I love you Joe Gorga. Kinda. But don’t talk about the poison in your penis anymore, mm’kay?
She doesn’t know what to do, none of this was in her imagined plan of him saying he’s sorry, that Mel is going to magically disappear, and that he will worship at her feet daily, so she just gapes and tears up. He says to call his wife, make it better, and tell their parents to come around and be decent, too. JOE GORGA MANNED UP.
Kathy and Rich have dinner with their accountant, and I like that he’s listed as their accountant, not friend and accountant. A chef was hired, which is an affront to Italians everywhere. Who does this? (Hostesses who want to mingle, that’s who.) The Gorgas show up, and it’s after the meeting with Tre. Mel starts in telling the group what happened earlier and Joe catches them up with what went down.
The accountant’s wife (not Italian) doesn’t like Teresa because, and seriously, how she has not pulled out a gun and shot off Teresa’s face…. Teresa’s daughter was invited to Accountant Wife’s daughter’s birthday, and Teresa did not RSVP. I mean, I ask you! That’s like jerking off in the Pope’s mother’s face.
Side note about me, I absolutely hate women like this. Have a normal birthday party for your kid with wienies and a bouncy house, not some pissing contest with the neighbors, and think of it like this: one less mouth to feed! Jesus, get a hobby beyond parading your children around. End of side note.
Bro Joe tries to apologize for his sister saying, “They’ve had a lot on their plate lately,” because really, he’s a good guy deep down behind the poison and zit talk and grabby hands. Then, Accountant is all “Well, I guess they’re trying to buy back their furniture, hurr hurr.” What a dick. Joe tries to be decent, Kathy doesn’t want to talk about this (good for her) and Rich says to the table that if Juicy and Tre had only asked him for help, he would have been there in a heartbeat for them. Aww, they’re good people, the Gorgas/Wakilies, if a little misguided in how they show it.
Jacqueline heads over to Teresa’s house (shot of Tre teetering after a toddler in some buckle-up S&M boots) to talk about the convo. You know, in front of Tre’s kids. Teresa reinterprets the conversation to favor her, of course. This woman is pretty thick headed. Juicy calls to tell her to ignore the news comments about this alleged bankruptcy sale, because it’s not true. Tre tells the camera that it’s frustrating hearing people talk about this stuff because legally she’s not allowed to. That would be frustrating. Especially knowing that you had to keep that hideous furniture.
Jacqueline offers for the Mel/Tre show down to happen at her house so no one’s kids are over-hearing things they shouldn’t. Ahem. Tre calls Mel, who is bored on the phone, and a terse conversation of “You wanna?” “Yeah, whatevah” “OK, later” happens. Ugh. I want table flipping and “Prostitution hoo-ah!” Then Jesus Spice can sprinkle holy water on Tre, who will start shrieking and burning and a host of demons will fly out of her face. THAT WOULD BE GOOD TELEVISION.
Lauren goes with her mom, Caroline, to her first day of work at the radio station. Caroline’s kinda freaking out. She’s using her soft voice and her nervous down-cast eyes, and I have no idea who this person is. She has a bit of a rough start, but gets comfortable once people start calling in. She gives good advice, (“Cowl, we’ll towk, no big whoop”) the producers are happy, and then SHOCK,
a PA from Bravo TV a stranger calls in with the exact same problem as Teresa!
Caroline’s advice is to address the problem with the sister in law, hate won’t work for the long haul, handle ya bidness for the sake of the family, Guhbless. Sounds good, let’s see if it works!
Mel gets ready in main room of the house, the closet. (The other important room is the entryway, because that’s where you keep the babies.) Her Gorgon sister is there to give support, which is essentially a laundry list of how she hates Teresa. (That sister is rough, man. Rode hard, put away wet rough.) Kathy shows up and contradicts the sister, who doesn’t like that this is at Jac’s house. Kathy thinks it’s great, it’s neutral and no kids will be listening in. I like Kathy. Mel is going to try, but she’s not expecting a miracle.
Caroline and Jacqueline have coffee before the Big Show Down, and just as Caroline is saying how she doesn’t want to be there because of Teresa being a big ol’ OH HEY, TERESA. Guess who shows up? Jacqueline quietly offers Tre a sedative as Caroline makes excuses to get the hell out of there. Teresa mumbles some boilerplate about family being important and just looks dazed. (How many tranquilizers did Jacqueline give her? Like, a syringe full of Xanax?)
Teresa plops onto a stool and takes off her jacket (revealing another jacket underneath) and says that she’s as calm and cool as a whistle. Ahaha. She’s clean as a cucumber, light as a peacock and proud as a feather, this one.
Mel arrives, is gracious, brought a bottle of wine (she called it a glass of wine, which makes me think she drinks like a champ) and grumps into a room with Tre. Tre starts it off. “I’m here because one, our kids, two my parents who are ill,” (“Yes, I know this.”) “ and three my brother, your husband. I’m sorry things are where they are.”
And Mel sits back and says, “I don’t see how this is gonna work.” Wow, that’s a great start to a reconciliation! I mean, OK, she is prepared for all of the converted truth about to fly at her from Teresa’s mouth, but at least let her get the weirdness out, that way you can point by point blast her out of the water.
Or, I mean, you can work on fixing the problems. The show stopped here, and I have to say, after this, I’m done with this family feud. It’s too close to how we all deal with that one family member, and when it’s not resolved on TV, how am I supposed to move on in my own life? Hahaha. Hey, TV is what taught me that problems are solved in either 22 minute chunks, or in Very Special Episodes that might need to be continued to next week. You have your next week, Bravo, then back to the crazy.
And there better be more of this awesomeness. I don’t have an Aqua Net tag for nothing.
Next week! We wrap up this dud of a feud and head out to the Catskills to watch Juicy show off his shotgun to the face skills. (Wonder where he learned that?)