The gang heads to Hawaii for Mauricio's birthday, while a disinvited Taylor makes her presence known from afar.

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Real Housewives Beverly Hills 2
Credit: Bravo

What’s old is new in 2012. The episode opened back in that mortifying limo. Russell, his boil set to low, had all of his energy focussed on that disturbing slow twiddle of his thumbs. Taylor sat stiff in the corner, looking simultaneously petrified and like she was ready to scratch his eyes out. Both of them were stunned that they’d been barred from entering Kyle’s party because of something Camille said on camera. “It was exaggerated,” said Taylor. It was unclear whether she was trying to save her ass from his wrath or remind her husband there was some truth to Camille’s outburst. “Yeah, absolutely,” said Russell, backtracking. “It was an out-and-out lie.” Taylor’s face twitched at this and Russell’s jaw tightened. Both of them, nuts.

Back inside the party Kim cocked her head back and forth with confusion. Taylor had been kicked out? Was she drinking? Too many prescription meds? Lisa and Camille tried explaining the situation and Kim just gave a relieved little loony tunes laugh. “Thank God it’s not me this year,” she said rather ruthlessly. (Oh honey, it still is.) Kyle gathered in the sane room to bemoan the terrifying confusion of the whole ordeal. God forbid if Russell actually did beat up Taylor and God forbid if he was innocent of Taylor’s claims. Dana spoke up and delivered her one redeeming line of the season.”If my girl said it, it happened,” she insisted, which is the loyalty any woman would want to hear from a friend in such a situation. That said, the camera then cut close in on Dana’s Aqua Net teased and sprayed bangs. Two steps forward, one step back.

Who wants to go to Hawaii?! (Not Kim.) Lisa was packing in her enormous sun-drenched closet, wearing a fur-ribbed peignoir, her hair in its finest Jaclyn Smith glory.”You know Giggy’s not going to Hawaii,” she told Ken. Oh pooh, Ken had already dressed the pup in a wittle Hawaiian shirt and grey dolly sweat pants. (One day can we please see the inside of Giggy’s closet?) In other news, Ken ran into Cedric who delighted in sharing the news that he was now working as a life coach for a famous, famous, famous, crazy famous interior designer. “More like a life roach,” smirked Lisa. Zing!

At this point, the Bravo production crew has strict orders to include a shot of both a shirtless Mauricio and an adorably attired Portia in every episode. “Honey, no more working out!” Kyle called out to her husband. Oh baby, this is going to be good. Mauricio bounded into the shot wearing nothing but a sweaty torso, sexy necklace and gym shorts. Quick cut to Portia looking happy and slightly dazed in a sequin shift and purple cape. While I don’t want to bite the hand that feeds, even I know when I’m being manipulated.

NEXT: Kim misses her flight. Blames life.

The ladies descended on the airport and gathered in the first class lounge. Kyle called to check in on Kim’s whereabouts and then was rewarded with Kim griping into the phone that her driver’s license was expired and she couldn’t find her passport and the power was out on the block and she doesn’t want to be lonely anymore and she lost her f^#&ing keys and leave her alone, she misses her kids. Brandi sat there unsuccessfully trying not to smile. Hold up, hold up, said Kyle. Kim told her she’d already renewed her license. “Well I lied to you,” Kim snapped at her sister. Mauricio and Ken stood over the ladies, the two of them an unlikely pair. Mauricio in his black backpack with two bathing suits inside and Ken in a bright purple sherbet blazer, looking sad and unmoored without Giggy in his arms.

Yikes, back on the couch with Taylor, who carefully laid out the white party situation to her therapist Dr. Sophy. I’m definitely not as hard on Taylor as some of you commenters but there did seem to be a calculated way she re-outlined the events in a way that relieved her of any responsibility. When they got home that night she made Russell print out a copy of the email he sent Camille and she was horrified. But now it seemed like what was most outraging her was the fact that she had to miss the Hawaii trip with her girls. “I don’t want to be attached to his behaviors,” she told her encouraging Doc. “Who’s really paying is Kennedy,” he rightly reminded her. “It’s time for a tough decision.”

Back on board, Camille ordered eight inches of freedom from the amiable if confused flight attendants. Adrienne cackled at the prospect of Paul and Kim sharing the next flight to Hawaii and then having to both spend the night in Honolulu. Brandi gulped down a few more Xanax and rested her swollen ankle on the seat in front of her. Lisa rightly told Kyle to relax about her sister and let the woman make her own mistakes. “I know my sister,” Kyle insisted stubbornly. “She’s not happy.” They switched to a puddle jumper in Honolulu, which caused Kyle to swear like a sailor and Brandi to push her buzz into oblivious. On the bus ride to the hotel she slurred about the lack of chemistry between Lisa and Ken and red Ferrari owners’ lack of endowment. Whoa, whoa, said Adrienne. Her brother drives a red Ferrari and she knows for a fact that he’s plenty hung. Ewwww.

NEXT: Taylor calls in with news.

Paul arrived the next morning, ready for a weekend of love-making to the sound of dolphins calling to each other out the balcony window. His face fell when Adrienne greeted him at the door wearing a visor and a dour look on her face. She was lonely without the kids, and Paul’s company wasn’t helping. Also, he was nuts if he thought she was going to go in the ocean or swim with the dolphins or let him touch hr bare skin. Paul sighed heavily, and then recounted the trip over with Kim. Poor little duck might have taken a long snooze in the airplane restroom at one point. Then she and Ken opted out of the morning flight and at this point it’ll be a miracle if she ever touches toe to sand.

Camille and Brandi, who are becoming fast friends, met to lie out and admire each others’ hot bods. Has Camille had ribs removed? Does Brandi only have half a butt? Did Camille lie out in her wedges? Was Brandi’s bikini made out of six inches of rope? Ken and Lisa showed up and Lisa was exceedingly good-natured about the bodies on display before them. “Alright, Ken’s going to have a quick goggle,” she said, as Ken made googly eyes. “My God, that is a massive cos-tyume,” he wheezed at Brandi, before pretending to worry over the woman’s ankle. “I’m not going to beat around the bush,” Lisa told us of the sight. “It was see through, there was no bush.” The woman was on fire with the one-liners and she knew it. I attribute her heightened wit to those six inches of fake eyelashes.

They joined Mauricio and Kyle on the beach to coo over the dolphins. “I don’t know this number,” said Lisa, peering down at her cellphone. But it’s your best friend Taylor! “Hi Leese, it’s Taylor. Hey you guys, are you having fun?!” she said, her voice muscled into a forced tone of merriment. “You know what, my marriage is over. It’s over.” I’m so incredibly confused. After all this time, after all this drama, the straw that broke the camel’s back was having to miss Hawaii? It wasn’t the broken jaw, the various assaults, the horrific scenes that surely her young daughter was privy to all this time? Hadn’t she been selling us all season that they were in a much better place and were working hard to save their union? And while I’m pleased that Taylor felt at such peace with her decision, and believe her when she said that both she and Russell agreed they had a toxic marriage, I remain mystified. “No, there’ll be no fighting,” said Taylor, who promised an amiable separation of two mature adults who want nothing but to be the best co-parents to their daughter. Wasn’t the problem that Russell scared the stuffing out of her and she feared for her life? And—forgive me for my cynicism—but why call the Housewives on the beach with news like this if not just for it to be caught on camera? Was it that unsettling for her to be left out of the story line even for a weekend?

Next week: Kim’s feeling aggressive.

Happy New Year, Friends! Was it odd—even for reality TV—the way Taylor tracked her good friend Leese down in Hawaii to spill her plans for a non-toxic divorce and co-parenting on speaker? The other Ken: cute, bullmastiff or gay bullmastiff? Wouldn’t Brandi’s swollen, mottled ankle suggest she may have had the cast removed prematurely? Who more wants to make out with each other, Brandi or Camille? Was Lisa a Charlie’s Angel in a past life?

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The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Bravo’s guilty-pleasure franchise meets California luxe

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