The Real Housewives of Atlanta season finale recap: Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. and Mr. Peter Anthony Thomas!
I think it’s fair to say that Lawrence stole last night’s show. In a series devoted to cheez—think the She by Sheree fashion show, Phaedra’s maids-a-milking bridal shower, Kim and Kandi’s strip mall tour—Lawrence upped the ante with a Gaga-esque performance of his single. And in a franchise devoted to women who pretend to be friends while they’re reaching for one another’s necks, it was kind of dear to witness Sheree’s genuine excitement for her friend. Is that what Atlanta has been missing this whole rather laborious season? Moments of genuine camaraderie and fun? Anyways, Sheree was there for Lawrence, beaming like a Mama Bear, just as she’d been there in her Uggs, squished onto an end table, last week on Watch What Happens Live. Spin-off! Spin-off!
Now let’s all send good thoughts to Cynthia’s poor mother and sister, who really deserve a spa day after all that wedding drama. Their beloved Cynthia was a mess, ready to outfit her bridesmaids in Target wear and sign off on a cash bar. (Maybe Dad would pony up the needed three thou? Aw gee, he’d really, really like to but … Same old story of all the men on this show. Ma to the rescue as usual.)
Dear Mal—who is sweet and good and yet I still can’t stop thinking of Whitney Houston’s sister in The Bodyguard every time she’s on screen—did her best to talk her hand-wringing sister into running. Her mistake though was presuming that Cynthia held the vows of marriage sacred. “Once you do it, it’s done,” warned Mal. “No, you can get a divorce,” said our resident romantic. Save it for your vows Cynthia! Mal started crying, Cynthia fled the house and started aimlessly roaming the sun-bleached streets of Atlanta. This was Housewives-verite filmmaking, with the Bravo editing team snickering to themselves as they panned to close-up shots of STOP signs and “You Big Dummy!” on Cynthia’s t-shirt. As Cynthia sunk miserably into herself on a park bench, scaring the neighborhood children off the jungle gym, Mom showed up. Now she was crying too, telling her daughter that she didn’t have a good feeling about this cursed wedding.
But Cynthia only wanted the advice of her champagne glass, to which she showed more lusty affection than she ever has Peter. She had a slightly slurring heart-to-heart with her very charming daughter Noelle. “You are the love of my life and no one can ever replace you,” said Cynthia, “and it’s me and you, like, and Peter”—yeah, yeah, that guy, whatever—”but it’s me and you. But, and Peter.” Noelle endured her mother’s rambling with grace, nodding politely that yes, she loved Ma more than Jaden Smith.
NEXT: Peter is so wasted; Mal throws her hands up in the air.
Peter forgot to get the wedding bands. Of course he did. Peter showed up smashed to the wedding. Of course he did. This guy seriously has to regret signing on for this whole reality TV thing. “I’m so f#^$ed up right now,” he announced. “I want vodka and cranberry.” (Cut to Mal sobbing into her handkerchief.) The Bailey women had one last chance to save their fair maiden. In a scene stripped out of a Lifetime movie, the women played dumb when Cynthia started smacking her forehead about forgetting the marriage license at home. No license, no legal nuptials. In the hallway, the camera zoomed in on the soggy piece of paper in Mal’s hand. Should they cough it up? Should they save Cynthia from shackling herself to the jackass waiting downstairs under the dinosaur belly? It was all very dramatic, and very confusing, as I understood that Mal was going to keep it hidden, thus saving her sister. But then suddenly the poor woman said they were all good, and she was crying again, and then she was walking down the aisle looking like her last resort was to stab Peter with the shiv she’d hidden in her bouquet.
Would Cynthia run? Kim, sitting there next to Kroy, itching and slapping at her new breasts, surely thought so. She didn’t really care though, as long as Cynthia didn’t try to make off with the fancy bottle of wine—better with ice!—that she brought to avoid the house swill. NeNe just wanted to pout her lips and look through bedroom eyes at the groom. Sheree wanted more people to ask her who she was wearing. Kandi had to make sure Joyce stuck to her three-drink limit and that Kim didn’t get up on stage throwing her ring finger in the air. (Not without Kim’s lawyer checking with Kandi’s manager first.) Phaedra, oh God, Phaedra wanted Dwight to eat her.
In the end, Cynthia appeared, looking like she was about to throw up over the balcony onto her guests. Peter, for all his obnoxiousness, had the perfect groom’s reaction to the first sight of his bride. Their vows were short, but sweet enough. “Marriage is to be honored among all people,” intoned the minister. (Genius cut to Kim’s sanctimonious little smile. I wonder if she’ll understand that that was a dig of an edit.) You know how I hate to side with Kim on anything, but I assume she’s not far off base in her mean-spirited bet that the couple would be split by the end of Season 4. Meanwhile Dwight stole an orchid branch at the reception—that’s grocery money, dude!—and gifted it to NeNe. He was in an obsequious state of mind, and wanted his rose to know that he missed her terribly. NeNe seemed to enjoy his flattering attention and even submitted to a little dance. How these two have both fallen in the audience’s esteem.
Oh Phaedra, all your campy sweet tea ridiculousness was forgiven when that fat rogue tear hit your cheek when you said goodbye to baby Ayden on your first morning back to work.
Terri Vaughn, don’t you ever talk that way to my Sheree again.
Well Atlanta fans. This season dragged a bit, don’t you think? Who here wonders if NeNe will come back for a fourth rodeo? She didn’t come off well all season, and her allies are dwindling. Problem is she does want to be a star and Housewives may be her only real shot at the spotlight. In the end, were Phaedra and Cynthia good additions? If NeNe and Kim both find each other so repulsive, why can’t they stop talking about one another? Finally, some questions of adorableness: Is Ayden one of the cutest babies you’ve ever seen? Is Noelle the dearest 11-year-old ever to grace a Housewives show? And anybody else out there want to hit the dance floor with her smoking hot Dad?