Meeting The Manzos…Ramble

I had the supreme pleasure of being at a private book signing for Andy Cohen’s book “Most Talkative” thrown by TV Guide a few days ago. For a Bravo addict, this party did not disappoint. There were Bravolebrities everywhere and I got to talk to all but two. 

It was great to chat with Lauren Manzo who is looking freaking killer about her weight loss. Keep going Lauren you halfway there. Even cooler though, was getting to speak with Mama Manzo, Caroline. It is always interesting to see how Bravo presents one side and then we learn more of the details. Teresa might be fun to watch on TV but would you really want to deal with a friend like that?  I had to give Jacqueline a hug. She is the sweetest person in actual real life too. Image

 Team Manzo was so nice. They arrived to the event early and ready to support. They were leaving so they could get to Kathy’s daughter’s graduation party. How cute are they?

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Tears, Shrinks & Don’t Get Cedric A Drink, #RHOBH Highlights…Ramble

The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills swept in like a fresh glass of Sancerre on a summer day when it premiered last year, but as we know it ended with the shocking break between Kim and Kyle Richards after Kyle went deep and revealed to all that Kim was an alcoholic on-camera. It led to Kim heading to rehab.

This season was off the charts before it even started when Taylor’s-on-the-way-to-being-ex-husband, Russell Armstrong committed suicide. For a second season this show was not suffering from the sophomore slump, but in fact perhaps so loaded with heavyiness it was a relief to have the announcment of Lisa’s daughter, Pandora’s engagement which the season finale will show the wedding. It was fun to see Adrienne Malouf try to be romantic with her husband Paul in Hawaii sticking her tongue down his throat at a group dinner but…..there are a few random things that happened this season that were totally cray-cray:

1) What is up with all the extra friends? We barely know the original cast members and then for some reason Bravo decides to add not only Brandi to the mix, who’s ex is Eddie aka Mr. LeAnn Rimes now and apparently cheated on her a lot & also friends with Lisa’s former houseguest Cedric, but all the ladies seem to have a friend. Kyle has Faye who yes, posed in Playboy, and is her decorator. Kim Richards has a random assortment of help like her maid and make-up artist because her ‘gay bull mastiff’ boyfriend (according to Brandi) Ken wasn’t able to provide any support.

Brandi was supposed to be Adrienne’s friend, but she brings along that chick Jen from Celebrity Rehab?!!!? to everything. Camille was joint at the hip with her friend/assistant? DeeDee or is it DiDi? Either way I don’t really care for her. Taylor brought in her friend, party planner (who didn’t plan any of the successful parties on the show, even her own diasterous night), Dana who surprizingly made it on to a cast member poll during Watch What Happens Live this week. Do we care? Dana always seems to be on another planet called ‘guess how much this cost?” And then of course, Taylor swapped Dana out for her shrink to come to Lisa’s restaurant opening. UM???? Is this the Real Friends of Beverly Hills?

I did love how Adrienne’s chef Bernie showed up to the opening with RuPaul in tow. Now that’s a friendship I’d like to see as opposed to DeeDee stiring up trouble with Taylor at Brandi’s party when it was very clear Taylor has a lot of issues. It really wasn’t right to attack someone who is in that much pain.

All of this season’s odd friends seem to culminate in the opening of Lisa’s new restaurant:

2) Pandora’s wedding planner Kevin is just to die for! He is over the top and brought much needed levity to the show. I can’t wait to see how fabulous his ‘bling bling million dollar wedding’ turns out next week.

3) Kyle needs to switch networks. She cried so much I thought I was watching Lifetime, Television for Tears! Her fight at the birthday dinner with Kim in Hawaii was so random. She totally freaked out when Kim accused her of driving with her cellphone attached to her ear. Her retort was equally bizarre about if you want to make stuff up I could say you were a child molester??? What? I mean, seriously what? How is cellphone abuse=child molester?

4) Ken and Brandi flirting is fairly hilarious. Lisa getting a bit jealous even as a joke is just devine as she is always fighting off Ken’s advances and teasing him that he’ll get some affection next year! Lisa admiring Brandi’s assets in Hawaii was very entertaining.

5) Lisa’s friend Muhammad’s engagement party for Pandora. A party with belly dancers, fire eaters, secret rooms and Kyle doing splits is one for the ages to be remembered.

6) Taylor finally breaking through, as rough as it’s been to see her suffer and the just complete lack of any emotion from her now deceased husband. I mean wow, my heart really goes out to her but part of me is like, was it only because she was on a reality show she was able to do this? How does this happen to such great, smart women? I think about Hayley Berry…. it’s just very tough stuff but fortunately Taylor did make it out and she is able to keep moving forward.

7) Kyle’s photo shoot for her book cover in a gown on her dining room table seemed so random. I like Kyle and she seems to have a great marriage, but I really don’t see her as the literary type, nor do I think I need any kind of advice from her. She pays people do decorate, I’m sure she has to have a nanny with that many kids and all her long social committments so what is it about? How fight with your sister in public and cry? Cause I didn’t like Kyle & Kim ganging up on Brandi and hiding her crutches no matter what she said, that is so juvenile. Kyle was definitely a mean girl when she wasn’t crying this season.

8) The disturbing unraveling of Kim’s mind on camera. So. Much. Sadness. She shouldn’t be on TV! Kim don’t do a third season. This is not helping you, it’s documenting your illness!

9) Lisa and Adrienne are so priviledged they couldn’t be bothered to go in the water in Hawaii and look at the fish. I cherish snorkeling or scuba diving time. It’s maginificent that calm that follows after time in the water like that and that visibility that day was Heaven Sent. Shame on you Lisa get your bony ass in the water!

10) Brandi’s son pissing on Adrienne’s lawn. Um, boys will be boys? I guess Brandi was probably a bit nervous anyway and it didn’t help that she was on crutches. I bet she just couldn’t be bothered to correct him, but I don’t think that makes her a bad mother. There are moments you have to let go and talk about later especially after going through such a public divorce. Glad she finally somehow made it into the group, and apparently into Camille’s mouth making out with her in Vegas. Well people of Beverly Hills Spice Up Your Life!

My Top Fave Reality Parties 2011: Real Housewives…Ramble

The secrets to creating an event for most of us include food and beverages, decorations and of course, a good guest list. For The Housewives of New York, Hotlanta, The Dirty Jers and Beverly Hills includes entertainment from fire eaters to being the performers themselves (hello Sonia Morgan.)

Here’s a few of the most outrageous parties thrown by the Housewives in a bit of a Face-Off.

BABY SHOWERS:
Dirty Jers: In the season opener, Theresa’s congrats to her brother Joey sparked a fist fight that included senior citizens and women alike. Children were, of course present since it was a baby shower and reprecussions went on for half the season. The saddest part, other than Tre’s kids seeing it all go down, was when Joey cries to his father pleading for them to be a family. The whole escalation was frightening and as much as Bravo watchers have embraced this younger, sexy generation who seem to need to hump anytime anywhere, the frightening fisticuffs left me horrified.

Hotlanta: It seemed like a very quaint, non-wedding for Kim and Kroy’s baby shower. I loved when Phaedra tried to proclaim it reminded her of her baby shower. P- you are a saucy, sassy Southern Belle with a helluva a libido, but Phaedra there was no bizarre dancing or Duh-wight anywhere to be seen. However, things heated up between husbands when Peter the Elderly Husband of model Cynthia Bailey, decided to mix it up with Phaedra’s hubbie, Hunky Ex-Con. Um, Peter dude, shouldn’t you be thinking you are trying to be a Grown-Ass Man? Why are you so incredibly immature and hostile especially after you nabbed the fabulous Cynthia, who you constantly bring down several levels?

Winner… for Class (???): Hotlanta because no actual fists were thrown. Mr. Hunky Ex-Con decided to be the bigger man and back away.

BIRTHDAY PARTIES:

New York: It seems there’s nothing the New York cast likes to do than celebrate birthdays from the elaborate Sweet 16’s of Ramona and The Countess threw for their daughters…on the very same night, and of course Alex’s party on Governor’s Island and that annoying woman Cindy’s party in Quogue, The Countess’ suprize birthday party and even Ramona’s suprize joint birthday party with Sonia.

Beverly Hills: Taylor decided to have a ‘more child-friendly’ party for her daughter this year with 200 of their closest friends. Her daughter was turning five. They rented out a horse farm where Tay-Tay freaked out as the set-up was so last minute and her party-planning BFF, Dana, who always seems like she just smoked a pack of Malboro Reds and ignores negativity, saunters up an hour late. Taylor spent her own big 4-0 in Vegas next to former frienemy, Lisa Vanderpump at Lisa’s daughter’s bachlorette party.

Hotlanta: You didn’t think I’d miss a chance to remind you of Kandi’s 35th Birthday which included a stripper named Ridiculous, a gift from Phaedra did you? A stripper who could pleasure himself. I thought Pandora was the one having the bachlorette party? I mean Kandi’s Momma was there. It was just not the setting at what looked like a very high-end hotel.

Winner for pure volume: While NY had volume in numbers, and Hotlanta had the volume of Ridiculous’ Um, Donkey Dong, I’ve got to give it up for Taylor’s lips.

THEMED PARTIES
The White Party by Kyle Richards where she forces all of her devious friends to pretend they are as pure, or at least dress as pure as the driven snow. Alleged Abuser Slash Husband of Taylor- Russell has decided to threaten Camille Grammar for repeating Taylor’s abuse allegations…which were in ‘private’ (filmed) and how would he have known what she said unless Taylor mentioned it? So, this gets the Armstrongs barred from The White Party. Sad especially when last year Russell stranded Taylor there, she had a good cry on Kyle’s bed and then they danced the night away.

Adrienne Malouf’s Fashion Show… is that a theme? Cause if so, she did a great job of upping She by Sheree just a notch. The fashion show was to benefit Step Up, but it was also to debut the shoes Adrienne is now selling for $15K a pair. Malouf claims she didn’t want to detract from the charity aspect by actually showing off the shoes. Models wore outfits that covered the shoes, as did Adrienne herself. What is it with The Emperor Has No Clothes/Shoes theme by default Stop throwing fake fashion shows on TV if you don’t want attention drawn to your brand.

Sonia Morgan’s Ballroom Party … New Yorker’s are very busy, and apparently Sonia is so busy she forgot the bottom half of her costume. Instead of hiding in a corner, Sonia was brazen enough to bend over and show off her ass as much as possible.

Winner: Kyle of BH because she is the only one with an intentional themed party.

I’m looking forward to seeing the wedding parties of both Kim to Kroy and Lisa’s daughter Pandy to her man Jason. And, with that I leave you with this thought:

Hotlanta Hot Mess Kim Takes Google’s Name in Vain…Ramble

This week ‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta’ returned for Season 3, which just proved Season 2 all the RH series ‘jump the shark’ with their new-found ‘faux-fame’ to borrow the term from Jerry Seinfeld. Well, Season 3 they get back to the business of being themselves and the downward slide of the faux-fame into their real lives. Hallelujah!

The always entertaining, wine-drinking, whig-wearing hot mess, Kim Zolciak returns with a new single called “Google Me.” Clearly this follow-up to the brilliant “Tardy for the Party” was made without the help of her castmate, Kandi Burruss. While you may be looking at the time thinking this is only :57 seconds, trust me, that’s so your ears have a chance to recover from this unfiltered exposure to Kim’s vocal stylings.

Unreal Housewives With Real Issues…Ramble

The Real Housewives of Orange County (RHOC) was started in reaction to ABC’s ‘Desperate Housewives’ to show …well, how spoiled, rich women fill their idle hours. The best part about RHOC was the revolving cast members and their lack of focus on how to monetize being on the show for the first couple of seasons.

Just like any MTV reality coupling (think Nick & Jessica, Travis & Shana, Heidi & Spencer) in a series, this reality show lead couples to divorce, couples to split, privileged teens to be evicted and given a shoulder to lean on by a money-grubbing peroxide blonde ‘with a heart of gold’ when she was first introduced to the series as the companion of an elderly man with tons of cash and terminal cancer.

Elegance is learned...my friend!

As CSI and Law & Order (dunt dunt) spun off into other franchises of the series, so did Bravo opt to spotlight women in other cities including New York, Atlanta and New Jersoi (hey Jersey Shore came AFTER this amazing successful season of ‘Prostitution Whore’ table throwing by Theresa ‘I Consider Myself A Classy Woman) and now expands to Beverly Hills and D.C. Uh oh Andy Cohen……not only the host of ‘Watch What Happens Live’ (WWHL) but the Head of Programming for Bravo. He’s the real Big Deal Y’all, not as my friend exclaimed ‘oh not a wannabe actor’ stooop right there grrrl, I love me some Andy Cohen….but I ramble….back to topic.

Is this too much of a good thing? Last week Jerry Seinfeld was on WWHL and asked to play Housewives Ref but Jerry wasn’t having it. He sort of went down the path that all the Housewive programming is a bunch of crap that will melt your brain and none of these women have any manners and just in case you didn’t hear it Andy, these people are mean and stupid. Um, okay Jer….you knew what you were getting yourself into and uh, don’t you want fans of the Housewives to be watching your show ‘Marriage Ref’ on Bravo’s sister-parent station NBC? Jerry, didn’t you say you were friends with Andy? Andy admitted it was not a fun game afterall and they cut to commercial.

In the words of Andy Cohen “Here’s What”:

a) Several of the Housewives seem to be over-medicating: Lynne (of RHOC), Kim (Atlanta- why does she wear a wig again? She did own up to not having cancer but never gave a reason for wearing a wig), Danielle ‘The Prostitution Whore’ (New Jersey) and of course New York’s sadly very own run-in-traffic-Playboy-bunny Kelly Kiloran ‘I’m a real person’ Bensimon. Kelly’s mental state has taken up the past two episodes of RHNYC. Kelly you are batshit crazy. Why do you continue to expose yourself on TV like this? Stop the madness, if you were a real person you’d find this uncomfortable to watch and seek some help.

b) Drop the OC cast PLEASE!!! The only remaining original cast member is Vicki, the workaholic insurance seller who seemed to be crying every episode due to her insane castmates. I’m not even a huge Vicki fan and I think she needs to quit the show. Here’s what Andy…that means yes, you have room for new Housewife franchises cause everyone is sick of the OC witches. Half of them are not even Housewives anymore and Tamara is just a disgusting high school mean girl…oh wait, you say that makes great TV? Eh, I’m over them.

c) MUSIC! Ladies, I got into the Hotlanta version about half way into the first season at the beckoning of my younger sister who declared herself ‘Captain of Team Nene.’ It was a hoot. These women dropping words like ‘elite’ and ‘class’ when they have neither but they all at least did charity work, unlike the hobags of the OC who were boozing it up and trying to get their friends ‘naked drunk’ but then didn’t want their friends to actually hook up with their out-on-parol sons.

In season two Kim ‘whig out’ Z released the single ‘Tardy For The Party’ and it does rock. It’s the perfect summer song and I’m jealous that Kim achieved one of my goals to be a one hit wonder on the disco floor.

Well, Kim Z it wasn’t too nice that you did not wish Countess Luann (RHNYC) the same success with her single. Here’s what: I love Countess Luann’s single and I bought it. Yep, elegance is learned …MY FRIEND! Money can’t buy you class (Jill Zarin!)

d) Faux fame monsters! On this note Jerry Seinfeld was right there are a number of the Housewives who believe they are legitimately famous and putting products out there. This wouldn’t be so annoying if they weren’t constantly hawking it on the show. Yes, we get that the show has launched them into ample opportunities but do we have to be marketed to every time you open your mouth Jill Zarin? Jill (NY)  and Nene (Hotlanta) both were likeable, loveable and women I would’ve wanted to hang out with on their first seasons. Somehow they started to believe they were the shit and the Head Cheerleader at last so they decided to pick fights with everyone only they went too far…Here’s what: It’s embarrassing.

e) Bethenny Frankel- she’s no saint. When this season of NY started I was like so totally on Jill’s side and couldn’t understand how rude Bethanny had tipped without shame. Well, then I realized neither one of them was acting too great to each other but….last summer I stopped following Bethanny on Twitter after her posts were just mean. She even picked a fight with Rachel Zoe and of course, one of my favorite people who never responded (I heart you) Gwyneth Paltrow calling out GP’s cooking skills which she had not sampled. Hmm BF you totally got pissed when Kelly KBS gave you the same types of comments, in fact you went bananas. So perhaps Bethanny you only went all noble and forgiving with Jill “I don’t want to win, I just want to make up” because you signed a deal for your own series “Bethenny Frankel…getting married?” Um, yeah we can see that rock from space so why that title….but anyway HERE’s WHAT: Sorry BF a special one episode for that would probably be enough when the über talented and fun and sassy Christian Siriano, who is far more entertaining got one episode. I won’t be watching your show BF. Not interested. I let you go and embrace the GOOP of Gwyneth who nourishes my soul instead.

In recap: Woohoo, love you Housewives but I’m going to be selective and cheer for Theresa and Dina of New Jersey who continue to deliver hilarious one liners like ‘tick tock psycho bitch.’

P.S.

I agree with Sarah Jessica Parker that Sonja Morgan adds helium to the NYC cast but what’s with adding Jen Gilbert too? How many freaking housewives do we need in one cast?  Also shining this season is my fellow Brooklynite, Alex McCord who is the voice of sanity.

Kelly Ripa said on WWHL ‘Sweetie, I’d like to hear Cher cover Luann’s song.’ That’s great Kelly but even better….Rupaul. How bout a gay benefit with all 3 of them together? Now that’s fun…my friends!