While SUR recovers from a fire, the crew lights up Big Bear
Credit: Bravo

The title of this episode could not be more accurate — yes, it really is all happening. Between Lala and James having words, Stassi finally coming to terms with the fruitlessness of her relationship, and Scheana falling hard for Rob the Fix-It Guy, the drama is so hot it makes the SUR fire look like a Bunsen burner.

Let’s take it from the top.

First things first: Lisa Vanderpump is a boss. Again. As always. The fire at SUR hasn’t exactly decimated the place, but it did cause enough smoke damage that she’ll need to re-cover all the chairs, re-finish the floors and walls, overhaul the electrical board, and, of course, put everything back together.

That might be a near-monthlong job for some restaurant owners, but she recognizes that she’s got not only customers but employees who need the doors of this place to be open, so she and Guillermo will their way into putting Humpty Dumpty back together again in just three days. Once they get the place up and running, they kick back for a well-deserved pair of margaritas and relish in their job well done. Sure, they’re still hooked up to a generator for a few days, and the floor paint doesn’t even look dry, but the place is still poppin’ like usual. Good enough.

In the meantime, though, the restaurant’s hiatus does give Stassi some time to ugly cry her way into forgiveness (and only writing a check for half of what she owed from the bar tab somehow?) from Katie and Kristen before trying to examine what exactly made her behave the way she did at her birthday party.

Surprisingly enough, turning 29 has made her at least wise enough to recognize that her friends aren’t exaggerating when they say she changes the minute she’s around Patrick. She’s testier, more timid, and overall just not herself. Stassi says she’s noticed herself walking on eggshells when Patrick’s around, too. When Katie comes over to fix her table bench and talk, Stassi admits, “I love him. I’m in love with him. But the same patterns are happening. The same things that I said can’t happen this time around are happening.”

Her New Orleans roots have taught her that this is the exact sort of situation that calls for a tarot reading, so Katie dutifully tags along as Stassi seeks such mystical counsel and learns that the cards predict her getting pregnant by 2019 — which would be a medical marvel, considering she admits to having a “serious condition where [she] only dates a–holes” — but that her current relationship might not be worth sticking around for.

The biggest problem, our new soothsayer friend tells her, is that she’ll never get the kind of reciprocal attention and adoration that she’s putting into it. Watch this space.

Meanwhile, Scheana has decided to invite the rest of the bunch up to her boyfriend Rob’s lake house in Big Bear to prove that not all her friends are jerks. And that goes over just about as well as you’d expect… (Recap continues on page 2)

Whoever got it in their head that it’d be a good idea to bring James Kennedy to a weekend-long house party with Lala Kent, well, they need to get their head examined because something is clearly wrong. To think Scheana’s been all worked up that “Old Man” Jax is requesting a queen size bed for his bad back, while paying no mind to the fact that she’s inviting a wannabe DJ to get drunk with a bunch of people he’s had severe drama with. What could possibly go wrong?

The writing’s on the wall as soon as they all walk in the door and James begins slugging vodka, insisting on getting a ton of liquor to complement Jax and Sandoval’s beer buy.

Of course, Scheana’s too blissed out over her relationship with Rob — and busy making sure everyone knows every gory detail of her adoration for him — to realize how messy the situation with James is already getting. “After being with Shay, this is more the life I envisioned for myself. I’m happy as s—, and it’s like, hashtag, it’s all happening!” she gushes. It takes about two hours of her rambling about how he can fix boats and install TV mounts and has a nice, erm, package before everyone’s just done hearing about Rob. Since it is his house and all, they’ll all have to tolerate the TMI and PDA factor, but at a certain point, it’s almost a relief when James gets tossed and starts torturing everybody.

Even so, poor Lala. She’s made her condition for returning to this group very clear to anyone within earshot: Her “man” is not to be messed with. But that’s no roadblock for drunk James, who’s making it pretty clear that he’s 100 percent jealous of the man he calls “Fat Rolls Royce,” much to Raquel’s chagrin.

Lala tried to warn Raquel that James has a tendency to harp on her beau and that she’s not tolerating that kind of talk anymore, but there’s nothing Raquel can do to quiet his mouth or stop him from hanging on Lala throughout the night with weird comments about her sex life. To be fair, Lala does repeatedly encourage the conversation to continue, no matter how disrespectful it is to herself or Raquel, because she believes he’s a “hurt human being” only she truly understands. So, yeah. This dynamic is weird, and by inviting him back to talk again and again after he makes it clear he’s one tiger that ain’t changing his stripes, Lala might even be feeding on James’ bizarre fascination with her.

In the end, the two outlast everyone in the house and threaten to push Rob into sleeping in the garage with their violently loud outbursts — so, yeah, the friends are not impressing the new boyfriend here. They come to exactly zero kind of resolution; James is going to continue being a pompous jerk, and Lala is going to continue drawing a line in the sand no matter how he feels. But James does make it clear that he’s still harboring some twisted kind of “love” for her that informs all his animosity for her boyfriend, even as she insists her boyfriend is off limits for jibing anymore (like that‘ll work).

At one point in the night, they each yell at each other, “Change your attitude,” and that’s probably the most salient point either one of them has made this entire time. This trip isn’t over yet.

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