For the past week, my family and I haven’t been able to live in our house, which was, as you know from my Episode 3 recap, flooded by a burst washing machine supply hose. We moved back in yesterday, and what should I find waiting in the mailbox? Our new property appraisal, up by a shockingly unfair amount. Not your problem! All you want is your recap. A friend of mine gave birth last night. I was texting her husband during her labor, seeing if Mom was doing okay. “She’s fine,” he said, “and she’s anxiously awaiting your Real Housewives of Dallas recap tomorrow.” It’s more important than childbirth! So let’s tackle Episode 4, “Mouth of the South.”
We open in Brandi’s kitchen, where four wet, red-headed Redmonds — including husband Bryan, 4-year-old Brinkley, and 6-year-old Brooklyn — are getting ready for the day. The girls’ hair is wet. Brandi’s hair is wet. Bryan is sweaty. It’s quite something. Brandi says that one of her dropkick dogs is named Whisper, and “the other doesn’t really have a name, but I call her Sugar Butt.” It kind of sounds to me like both dogs do have names, and both are better names for a dog than Story.
High-energy street montage.
LeeAnne pays a visit to Heidi Dillon at her house. LeeAnne tells the interview camera: “Heidi is someone you want to be friends with. I mean, the woman has it going on. Her wardrobe is amazing. She collects incredible pieces of art. And her house is like the frickin Taj Mahal.” I am tempted to get judgmental on LeeAnne for the shallow criteria she uses to pick her friends, but then I do some soul searching and realize that I am friends with a guy solely because he owns a pickup truck that he sometimes lets me borrow to haul crap around. Well, that and because his wardrobe is amazing.
Anyway, LeeAnne and Heidi greet each other with a hug, and Heidi goes for LeeAnne’s ass, which I find odd. Heidi’s modern house is undeniably sweet. LeeAnne says, “Heidi Dillon is the queen of Charity World,” with no article. Maybe I’ve been spelling it wrong all along. Maybe it’s like Waterworld.
They open a bottle of Andre Clouet, which I am given to understand “offers up layers of mineral-infused red fruits on a silky, mid-weight frame, with gorgeous length and a refined, subtle mousse.” The two ladies have a pretend meeting about Charityworld. Heidi agrees to serve as the honorary chair of something to do with AIDS because no one says no to LeeAnne. And because champagne.
Cut to the Texas Star.
It’s time for a road trip. Stephanie and Brandi are driving to Coweta, Oklahoma, to visit Stephanie’s parents. With some difficulty, they load their four children into Stephanie’s Mercedes SUV. On the four-hour drive, the kids go bonkers. It’s clear that they, too, have been coached by the Bravo producers to act like idiots. Stephanie tells the interview camera: “I swear to God. The next time I buy a Mercedes, I’m making sure it comes with a nanny.” I was tempted to get judgmental on Stephanie for making a dumb, faux-bougie joke, but then I remembered that I bought my Prius because it came with a wet nurse.
Cut to Flower Reign by Shane Walker, where LeeAnne is doing Charityworld stuff for SPCA Paws Cause and explaining how, years ago, a Pomeranian made her grow up and become a mom. I wonder if she delivered vaginally or via C-section. LeeAnne’s friend Marie shows up, and we learn that she will host a cocktail party for all the housewives. Marie says, “I want everybody to have fun, not create drama.” I suspect this is why Bravo didn’t make Marie a regular cast member on the show. Marie! This show isn’t just about interspecies childbirth! It’s about drama!
Back to Stephanie and Brandi, who arrive at Stephanie’s parents’ house in Coweta. As her father scoops up one of his grandkids, Stephanie tells the interview camera: “My boys are very privileged, and I love taking them home. I feel like they experience something they would never experience if they didn’t go to Oklahoma. They experience the meaningful things in life.” So let me get this straight. Does she mean that back in Dallas, at home, her children never experience anything meaningful? What a sad thing for a mother to confess.
But before you can spend too long dwelling on how Stephanie is ruining her children, the ladies are in the kitchen with Stephanie’s mom making deviled eggs, and Brandi is telling the interview camera: “I’ve never made deviled eggs before. They stink. They smell like Stephanie’s farts, actually.” Aha! We have learned the secret to Stephanie’s super power. She can fart on command because she eats a lot of deviled eggs.
Stephanie’s big family gathers around the dinner table, and, as they eat, Stephanie tells the interview camera about how she grew up Pentecostal, going to church three times a week. She asks her mom if she’d like to get drunk for the first time. Her mom, Susan, turns her daughter down, saying, “If I’m going to have fun, I want to remember what I said and did.” Susan would not enjoy herself at LaBare, is my guess. Then Brandi says a bunch of stuff about how her broken family isn’t like Stephanie’s. She is sad.
Cut to Cary and husband Mark doing surgery on someone’s breasts. Afterward, still at the office, Mark asks Cary if she’s ready to go home and have “sexy time,” which is funny given the setting, and I would give Mark points for that if using the phrase “sexy time” weren’t even more emasculating than ordering the house chardonnay. No matter. Cary is headed to yoga with Tiffany. She and Mark briefly make out at the office, in their scrubs, and then Cary splits.
At We Yogis, Cary demonstrates that she does, in fact, have some serious yoga moves. I don’t know much about yoga, but the lady does a handstand that leads me to say out loud how impressed I am. To which my wife says, “Oh, now you like her?”
“No,” I say. “But she’s crazy good at yoga kung fu. Look at that.”
“Last time you were saying how dumb she was.”
“She is dumb,” I say. “But you have to admit that that is impressive. I mean, she’s strong.”
“You like her.”
“I DO NOT LIKE HER. I can’t watch this show with you. I just can’t. Don’t talk to me.”
So The Real Housewives of Dallas causes me to almost have a fight with my wife. While we were moving in and out of our house over the weekend, she lost her iPhone. Maybe that had something to do with it, too. The $800 for a new phone, the kitchen floor stripped down to plywood, the baseboards ripped out — and Cary’s surprisingly impressive kung fu yoga moves. It all pushed our marriage to the brink last night. Are you happy?
Back to Coweta, Oklahoma. As her parents go through old photos of Stephanie, she tells the interview camera: “Sometimes I feel guilty, living in Dallas, because I think my parents know I don’t deserve half the things I have in life. I haven’t worked for them.” Don’t dwell on this statement. It will make you sad. Instead, think about deviled egg farts.
Cut to The Juice Bar back in Dallas, where Tiffany and Cary, aprés yoga, drink gross-looking green stuff. Cary’s mascara looks great, especially considering that she was just standing on her head for an hour in a hot room. And, no, that doesn’t mean I like Cary. I’m just pointing out that her mascara didn’t come off. The two ladies talk about LeeAnne, with Tiffany defending her friend and Cary not buying it. Tiffany tells the interview camera: “If we could all just hang out and have girl time, outside of the Charityworld, I think we would all get along.” I less than respectfully disagree.
To Brandi’s house, where Brandi makes a very personal, tearful call on speaker phone to her estranged grandfather, John, while holding a venti coffee. John agrees to come to Texas for a visit. No, John! Stay away! Nothing good can come from a visit to Texas!
My friend Jessica, whom I’ve chosen to be friends with because she has pretty hair, texts me to ask if I plan to recap Watch What Happens Live, which is a show that follows The Real Housewives of Dallas and on which LeeAnne apparently further embarrasses herself, live. I want to punch Jessica in the neck.
At long last, we come to the part of the show where something is supposed to happen. It is the cocktail party at Stephan Pyles hosted by Marie, who just wants everyone to have fun, not create drama. We watch expensive shoes emerge from cars at the Stephan Pyles valet line. We get a gorgeous shot from the patio at Stephan Pyles of the First Baptist parking garage across the street.
Stephanie and Brandi arrive, and everyone pitches her voice up four octaves to show how super pumped she is. There are about 25 women in the joint, all drinking, all overdressed for Stephan Pyles, all probably in possession of their iPhones. The basic setup is LeeAnne standing on one side of the room, watching the other ladies, making remarks, building to what we hope is a satisfying showdown with Brandi or Cary. There’s a lot of hair and a lot of editing. Let’s see if we can just hit the highlights.
Tiffany tells Brandi, “I just want you to know I’m a real person, and I hate all this back and forth.” Which leads Brandi to tell the interview camera: “Tiffany is on me like a 50-percent-off sale at JCPenney’s.” I think she meant to say, “Tiffany is on me like a cheap suit from a 50-percent-off sale at JCPenney’s.” I don’t know how a sale can be on someone. She definitely should have said “suit.” Or “skirt.”
Tiffany gives Brandi a double-arm stroke, from her biceps to below her elbows, which is more erotic than when Heidi Dillon copped a feel on LeeAnne.
Cary and LeeAnne have a passive-aggressive exchange with a woman named Erica serving as the meat in an awkward sandwich. Cary says LeeAnne is “different.” LeeAnne says, “I’m made by God. I got a stamp right here on my ass that says, ‘Made by God.’ ” She punches her own ass. “Fuck you. There you go,” she says. Seems way more aggressive than passive.
Marie’s friend Taylor makes an appearance. He is the only boy invited to girls night. Even though he looks like he’s 15 years old, he explains to Marie that he gets botox injections in the summer so he doesn’t sweat and ruin his Dolce & Gabbana shirt. I’m guessing he’s not straight.
Taylor tells Brandi and Stephanie that he heard one time LeeAnne pooped her pants because she was wasted. Mon Dieu!
Brandi, Stephanie, and Cary corner Tiffany in an effort to confirm the pants-pooping story that isn’t really a story because Taylor didn’t provide any setting or sources or other details. LeeAnne watches from the other side of the room.
Finally Tiffany brings LeeAnne over to talk with Brandi while Marie looks on awkwardly, not saying anything, neither having fun nor creating drama, demonstrating that the Bravo producers really did make the right decision in giving her only a minor, unpaid role on the show. Brandi calls LeeAnne “Miss LeeAnne” and offers a totally insincere apology for not respecting LeeAnne, who is 12 years her elder, before saying, “Here’s the thing. You are so full of shit. Like, it drives me absolutely fucking crazy.”
Dramatic string music crescendos, but I have a hard time telling why anyone is worked up. I mean, there are swear words, and Stephan Pyles would close before this episode would air. But whatever.
They argue about who knows more about the other’s life and how it has been lived. I think about how amazing it is that Leicester City won the Premier League and how silly it is that the Wall Street Journal called their victory the greatest upset in sports this year. This year?! Please. It might be the greatest upset ever. I’ve been watching soccer for just two years, and even I understand that. What? The show is still on?
Suddenly LeeAnne has had enough. She dumps her champagne and almost simultaneously tosses the glass, but it’s not clear where she throws it. There’s the sound of breaking glass, but I’m pretty sure Bravo edited in that sound. Doesn’t LeeAnne know that when you toss your drink, you’re supposed to toss it in someone’s face? “That’s so classy,” Stephanie says. LeeAnne fires back, “It is classy,” which is such a weak comeback that I’m considering doing a Radiohead to the podcast we recorded with her, wiping it off the internet.
It looks like LeeAnne leaves, but then she spins around and she’s pointing at Stephanie’s face, really working herself up. If she were sitting on her patio furniture, she’d have to adjust her towel. LeeAnne says, “By the way, you know what’s classy? Is that you stand up for a little piece of shit, trash, who can’t keep her mouth shut.” She points at Brandi to clear up any confusion about whom she’s describing. “And you know what? Your Charityworld is going to go down the toilet!”
At which point, LeeAnne storms off, muttering to herself, “I don’t give a fuck about those three little bitches,” as Stephanie makes a valiant effort to cry for the camera and make her mascara run.
I don’t know what to say. I mean, I guess you could say the Miracle on Ice was a bigger upset. But that was really just one game. Leicester spent a decade out of the Premier League and only made it back up a season ago. They were 5,000-to-1 odds when this season began. So you really —
Oh. Right. Stephanie’s Charityworld is in danger of going down the toilet. Yeah, I don’t know what to make of that. And we never did learn whether LeeAnne actually pooped her pants.