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'The Real Housewives of Atlanta': Lisa goes home, introduces NeNe to Asians

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lisa_atl_housewives_lLast night, Lisa brought NeNe home to Inglewood to meet her family. NeNe didn’t expect to see so many Asian folks, and immediately removed her 10 inch heels. Her shock over Lisa’s Chinese side of the family got a little silly, as she kept tugging on her friend’s sleeve and asking her if she actually spoke their language and insisting that Lisa was black at heart. I’m going to give NeNe a pass though because she is actually quite sweet with old people and didn’t blink an eye when it turned out that Lisa’s parents are in fact adorable finger puppets.

And props to NeNe for realizing that she had no place at Lisa’s brother’s graveside. After much hand-wringing, Lisa accompanied her family to visit her brother’s resting place for the first time since his death three years ago. My stomach lurched when the scene began: There the family was, marching up the hill, with the little cut-out of mini Lisa swishing her black mini-dress in the left-hand corner of my screen. But then Lisa looked so covered up and nervous, her face puffy and free of makeup, that I restrained myself from being unkind. She lost her brother, and the family was still in pain. It sounds like the brother—a Patti LaBelle lover, a gay man with a girlfriend—loved his vices to death. I do wish her father had taken his son aside and bopped him on the head after he poured a bottle of liquor onto the grave.

Back in Atlanta, Sheree continued to alienate the event-planning population. She By Sheree might have a launch at a fashion show. Or at least someone might carry her sketch pads up and down a catwalk a few times. Either way, Sheree had a ridiculous man posing as her publicist who demanded that his client have special transportation to the event and be draped in Tiffany diamonds. The event planner in a silly hat looked confused. His sad partner looked like she wished she’d gone to law school instead of doing this party-planning crap. They paid Sheree back by showing her some possible models they picked up from the Hooters down the street.

I’ve realized that new Housewife Kandi has one go-to expression. She raises her eyebrows skeptically while trying to keep her pretty half-smile from sliding fully into shock or disapproval. I’m thinking Kandi does not want to be here, but figured a reality show was best way to reinvigorate her music career, so what the Atlanta? The poor woman does not want to record a remix to “Tardy to the Party,” which Kim apparently is now performing as spoken word. She does not want to talk astrological charts. (Heaven help me, I’m also a Taurus. Does this mean Kim and I will be best friends next season?) She does not want to sip on her Shirley Temple while Kim barks at the waiter to “just pour, Pour, POUR!” and systematically trashes the other women. Kandi doesn’t like drama, and she’s a healthier human being for it. Twenty bucks we’re watching Tanya next season instead of her.

The show ended with five minutes of maniacal laughter. NeNe and Lisa lolled on the poolside roof of their West Hollywood hotel. I’ve realized that Lisa has a hard time being quiet and calm, which is her natural personality. She spends a lot of time trying to keep up with the other women’s naturally broad personalities. Lisa says “That’s funny!” instead of actually laughing. And when she does laugh it doesn’t always sound sincere. And so after a heavy day of mourning with family it looked like she would rather just read a paperback mystery than talk gangsta pasts with NeNe. Michael to the rescue! A gay man with self-described ratty fingernails had picked up the women earlier in the lobby. He appeared, maniacal laughter ensued. A blind date with Dwight is surely on the horizon.

What did you PopWatchers think? Midway through the season, who are you liking, who are you hating, and who are you wishing would just go away?

Photo credit: Quantrell Colbert/Bravo

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