I would have watched 57 minutes of Kandi singing along to her voice memos, Cynthia licking her lips, and Marlo chomping on #thicc calamari — I guess technically I did just watch 57 minutes of those trying happenings — if it meant getting that one incredible full-circle moment where we saw that, really, Tyrone has been with us all along.
Halfway through Sunday night’s episode, as Sheree and a few of the other women try to figure out why NeNe is being so defensive about whatever mysterious relationship she has with The Dissociated Voice Formerly Known As Tyrone, Sheree explains how she met Tyrone: He was putting together an event in Philadelphia that Sheree, Kim, and NeNe were going to be paid to attend. That’s when the scene flashes back to SIX YEARS AGO, during one of Kim and NeNe’s legendary early-seasons smackdowns. The eyebrows are pencil thin, the wigs are a glistening synthetic, and it seems the very Tyrone we’ve been listening to Sheree talk to on the phone all season is in fact the inspiration for Sheree saying NeNe tried to take money out of her pocket all those years ago.
Perhaps others had already made this connection — I had not. It’s humbling enough that I’ve spend what I just calculated is more than a third of my life watching NeNe and Sheree yell at each other; I really cannot stomach taking up my valuable long-term memory space with them as well. I can barely remember my entire junior year of college, so I’m actually a little relieved that I don’t recall NeNe allegedly telling “Tyrone” that Sheree should make less money than NeNe does, and Sheree getting mad about that and calling up Tyrone during her confrontation with NeNe. Because if I remembered that, I wouldn’t have felt the lighting-like shock that came with hearing NeNe yell in flashback that she didn’t have time to tell Tyrone anything about Sheree’s booking rates: “I was running to the bank, depositing a Trump check — DONALD TRUMP.”
See, six years ago, NeNe was on The Apprentice, Tyrone was on the phone, and Donald Trump was just a game show host. Now, that game show host is our president. And Tyrone? Well, he’s technically still on the phone.
Somehow we are only on day two in Barcelona, though it feels like we’ve been there for a tyrone (a unit of measurement I’ve just invented to represent a six-year period). The group is finally leaving the Airbnb villa, and while I understand it wasn’t up to their standards and am happy for the owners that they get to keep Bravo’s money without having to deal with Marlo twerking at 3 a.m. anymore, these women act like they have been kept in Alcatraz, as opposed to a four-story Spanish villa. The Hotel Arts, though, with its two-story suites and all-white everythang, is much more in the spirit of wish fulfillment that these Housewives shows think they are.
In the car over to the hotel, NeNe explains that Porsha decided to leave Spain, and everyone is pretty cool about it, assuming that Porsha was trying to take herself out of a situation that would be unhealthy for her. So it’s too bad that this is the episode where everyone decides to chill out and have a good time with each other via forced photo shoots and occasional casual fake baptisms.
The women arrive at the hotel late at night, put on full faces of makeup, and then…meet in Cynthia’s room to hang out. Why did they all put on makeup?! They were just on camera without it?? The wonders will never cease. Sheree, the only one who actually arrives in no makeup and a onesie, suddenly finds herself as the entertainment for the evening when everyone decides they should coordinate a photo shoot for her to take sexy pictures to send to Tyrone in prison. Now, I assumed that would mean Sheree would take some lingerie pics, maybe in a silken robe or two. Instead, Marlo dresses her up in pair of leopard-print hose, paired with leopard print shoes, along with a black dress and wide-ass belt. I don’t get it. Dudes aren’t into red-bottoms, Marlo, they’re into…well, bottoms. Sheree is a good sport, but she’s clearly uncomfortable with everyone looking at her and telling her how to pose on the stairs that actual Top Model™ Eva was slaying just moments before. The women then apparently party into the wee morning hours, which we don’t get to see. (Recap continues on page 2)