The second night in Newport proves as chaotic as the first, but Leah and Ramona are able to make amends while Dorinda continues to obsess over Tinsley's relationship.

By Jodi Walker
June 04, 2020 at 11:40 PM EDT
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The Real Housewives of New York City

S12 E10
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"I'm sure all of these women have had a night where they threw a ravioli at someone's face." That's the understatement of the century made by Leah's sister Sarah, one of the many innocent bystanders to the ladies' second night in Newport, R.I., on The Real Housewives of New York City. Sarah says such a thing to make her sister feel better about, y'know, chucking a ravioli at her new friends, but Leah doesn't really seem to need too much reassurance on that front…

She knows she did something she shouldn't have, she's probably going to apologize for it, but she's also never going to forget that, if pressed, she can throw a piece of pesto-covered pasta and probably get away with it. Because the women on the receiving end of said ravioli will have inevitably done something of equal or greater horror well within recent memory (throwing a glass, falling onto a table, and screaming one's way through a pizzeria are just a few of the nostalgic nuggets the editors offer us in order to prove this very point). Sure, Ramona doesn't like Leah slamming 10 martinis and then trying to eat the centerpieces at her fancy private dinner, but the very next night Ramona will happily cause a scene at Tinsley's public dinner by refusing to sit at the table because she's too busy accosting a man in shorts.

Really, the crux of the women's conflicts seems to be that they are incapable of keeping their asses in a seat. They just have too much energy. But that also means that in general, every argument this season has started at the beginning of an episode, caused pure chaos for about 12 hours (30 minutes in TV time), and been resolved and mostly forgotten about by episode's end.

Among the RHONY cast, if you can't let something go — cough, Dorinda, cough — you stand out like sore thumb. And I think it's because this cast just kind of, against all odds… mostly likes one another. Of course, that could all change the minute Luann gets back up on the cabaret stage. Her director Ben seems very nice, but when he comes on screen and tells her things like, "In a way, you've put cabaret on the map," I always feel the need to cry out: Ben! You don't have to do this! I mean, technically he probably does if he wants to keep his job, but she couldn't possibly be paying him in anything more than drink vouchers, right?

Anyway, let's Eff Mary Kill this episode, shall we?

Kill: Literally anyone in this cast trying to flirt. The response to Leah's behavior last week seems to blow over for the time being when Sarah finally arrives. She has the same cool-girl vibe that Leah has, so some of the women try to impress her, which hilariously includes Dorinda telling the Brooklyn-dwelling Sarah that she recorded a public-access television program about all the best places in Williamsburg, and Tinsley announcing…

That she made out with her sister??? As a joke??? Ten years ago??? When she was 35 years old??? I'd rather not dwell on it, but it's definitely included in the aforementioned Kill category.

Others, however, are still keeping Leah — and by proxy, her sister — at arm's length. When the group heads to dinner at a restaurant owned by Tinsley's friend, Ramona, Sonja, and Luann head straight to the bar even though their table is already available. This annoys Tinsley because she thinks it's embarrassing for her guests to be loitering around at her friend's busy restaurant. But it doesn’t seem like her friend is even there, and surely they knew they were signing up for potential mayhem by allowing the Real Housewives of New York inside at all. And really, there is something much more upsetting happening than empty chairs at a crowded restaurant…

Ramona is flirting.

If there hadn't been two mildly cute late-30s men at the bar, Ramona, Sonja, and Luann would have probably plopped right down at the dinner table. But as Tinsley says, "Every time we go out with Ramona, she's always getting up from the table to talk to men, and it's all just to show that she can still get attention from someone — but to not give personal time to your friends just to prove you've still got it is just not right!" Tinsley is rarely insightful, so I'm proud of her for at least recognizing this as the catalyst for Ramona slithering up to a younger man in shorts and barking, "You're not wearing pants!"

But our fair Tinsdale can never quite stick the landing, can she? After the waiter has come and gone a number of times to a half-seated table, Tinsley marches over to the bar and for some reason chooses Sonja as her entry point — Sonja, who loves nothing more than to ignore and belittle Tinsley. She simply rolls her eyes at Tinsley's whines for them to come to the table, so Tinsley leans forward to the man they've been talking to-I-mean-at, and tells him she doesn't think his fiancée would be happy about him flirting with all these women.

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Now, in some ways I want to stand up for this man, because he did not ask for these horny women to pounce on him. He quickly told them he was engaged and directed them toward his single friend instead, and he seems simultaneously alarmed by and uninterested in the chaos that's erupting around him. But… I also lived in Washington, D.C., for a long time, and I know everything about this man simply from what he is wearing and the fact that he came to Newport from D.C., and therefore it is impossible for me to have actual sympathy for him. And yet, I can say that everyone in this establishment deserves a full refund on their evening, especially considering what comes next.

Elyse finally hints at her value-add to the franchise when she says, "Sonja, Ramona, Luann — these are just a geriatric Girls Gone Wild." And about that time, Leah has had enough of them ignoring Tinsley. She tells Sarah to saddle up because they’re going to steal these guys' attention with their youthful good looks, so that the others will be forced to retreat to the dinner table. I think it's a kind of hilarious, if evil, plan… but ultimately the timing is bad. The D.C. bro is so annoyed at this point that he initially ignores the sisters, and then when they hear he's engaged and say that his fiancée might have a problem with this flirtatious situation, he bites back, "It looks like the situation is that you're the f—ing problem."

Leah and Sarah got such a specific look in their identical blue eyes that I thought they really might crack a glass over the bar and end that man's life right then and there. Instead Luann notices that things are getting truly out of hand and convinces everyone to finally sit down at the table…

Where the conversation immediately escalates to a back-and-forth about whose dinner behavior has been ruder in Newport. (For the record, Leah's was worse but Ramona's was more public.) Suddenly, gourds are being used as ear plugs, dried corn is being burned like sage, and finally a ravioli is deployed as a weapon.

As Sonja and Ramona are fully immersed in their tweedle-dee-tweedle-dum act — and being quite rude about Leah's sister, calling her a demon and a weirdo in a way that seems fully audible — half the table gets up to call this dinner short. Leah calmly walks over to their side of the table, sits down in front of Ramona and Sonja, stands back up like she's about to leave, and then whirls back around, releasing a ravioli with the sheer centripetal force of a wunderkind MLB pitcher. A martini-drinking man with a sweater delicately draped around his shoulders is absolutely aghast as he watches the pesto hit Ramona's face without her so much as flinching, and I will be dressing as him for Halloween.

Leah walks outside and announces to Tinsley and Sarah, "I just threw a ravioli at them and I don't even care." She briefly makes out with Tinsley, they fall in a bush, and the weekend is over.

If you're wondering where Dorinda was during all of this, she got so unintelligibly hammered before dinner even started that once Sonja and Ramona started putting tiny pumpkins up to their ears so they wouldn't have to hear Leah and Tinsley, she stood up and said she needed to go back to the inn. It might be the wisest thing I've ever seen Dorinda do…

This diplomacy will not last.

Since Luann and Dorinda were never really in the mix of all the Newport fighting, they decide to host a "relax, relate, reset" tea party, sans alcohol, to try and bridge the gap between ravioli throwing and sober friendship. (For the record, "sans alcohol" means "champagne is the only alcohol.")

And things start off well! Everyone wears their little fascinators and eats tiny sandwiches, and Leah arrives ready to apologize to Ramona. And Ramona arrives ready to forgive Leah, because as she tells the camera, she just has a soft spot for the woman. Leah does tack on that she wants to make sure Ramona knows she's "not apologizing for who I am, I'm apologizing for what I did," but by the time they hug, Leah is crying and telling Ramona that she really is sorry, and she "didn't deserve that."

Whether Leah means the ravioli or the dinner party or the random request to invite her sister, we'll never know. But I also can't help but have a soft spot for Leah and how she swings wildly between complete destructive chaos and complete self-awareness. Of her unexpected emotions with Ramona, she tells the camera, "I don’t know why, but all my mommy issues are just being projected onto our relationship."

And then Dorinda announces that they should all switch seats for new conversations. She sidles up to Tinsley and says she'd like to talk to her in private. They go off to the side where Dorinda starts off saying, "I want to approach you super-aggressively or anything," and then proceeds to literally threaten Tinsley. She says that she knows Tinsley went to Niagara Falls with Scott after Newport and, "If you don't tell them that you're seeing him, then I'm gonna tell them."

Why… is Dorinda like this with Tinsley? Why does she care?! It's not as if she's being a friend and asking Tinsley how the trip went, or why she may have suddenly seen Scott again, or how she's feeling about him right now — she's just demanding that Tinsley maintain complete transparency about her on-again-off-again relationship at all times. Dorinda tries to say she doesn’t need every detail, she just wants Tinsley to admit that they're together, but then she refuses to accept Tinsley's response that they're not together. And as Tinsley is trying to elaborate that she's "really hopeful that the trip will turn into something more," which is actually a very honest thing to tell a woman who relentlessly bullies you, Dorinda just walks away saying that she'll leave Tinsley to it, but she needs to tell the others.

So Tinsley walks back to the table and says that apparently something that was private to her needs to be made public, telling them that she saw an ex-boyfriend after they got back from Newport. Everyone from Ramona to Sonja immediately express that they understand why Tinsley wouldn't want to share that yet, mainly that it's confusing and she wouldn't want all their opinions. And I feel so happy for Tinsley that the group is finally being supportive of her, and she must too because when Luann rather sweetly asks her if they can know how it went, Tinsley starts getting emotional.

"Why are you crying?" Dorinda barks at her, and seriously, what is her deal?

Tinsley says she's crying because the weekend actually went really well, but she still doesn't think it will end well because it never does. The others tell her she just has to put a toothbrush in his bathroom, her underwear in his drawers, and inform him that he needs to put a ring on it and impregnate her right now or it's all over. "If history has told me anything with us, we always break up," Tinsley says in her testimonial. "But you gotta do what you gotta do to get what you want in life, and at the end of the day I want to be with Scott."

Is this Scott thing going to work out? I mean, maybe not. But no one will ever be able to make that decision for Tinsely except Tinsley. And by golly, she's doing it. Next week: Tinsley and Dale weeping about some relic of a past life. See you then!

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The Real Housewives of New York City

Ramona, LuAnn, Sonja, Carole, Heather, Kristen, and Dorinda—and oh, yes, Bethenny—are in a New York state of mind.
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