(June 6, 2012) – Ah back to Costa Rica in Mexico!, the scene of the crime where – from an emotional point of view – last week we witnessed the kangaroo court trial of Alexis Bellino. I am so proud of her for not “hugging it out” with Heather Dubrow so they could “start fresh” after the Real Housewives of Orange County were “very honest” (hah!), “advocates” (double hah!) for her.
The next morning, Alexis is packing to leave. She wants to go home and take care of her kids and husband. Like a snake Heather slithers in to see how she’s doing. Alexis says she’s “good.” At the risk of sounding nasty, I use the word “slithers” because later in the episode, as soon as Alexis is gone, Heather returns to bashing the poor woman. I can just imagine how Tamra reacted when she heard Alexis say she is “good.”
I am sure she thought it proved what a phony she is. Rather than emoting on camera that she’s hopping mad (and for a very good reason), Alexis conceals her emotions and claims she’s “good.” Good for her. She has nothing to gain by sharing her true thoughts and feelings with these women. They have no respect or care for her. Despite what Tamra Barney thinks, Alexis has no obligation to reveal herself to them.
Heather wants her to be a “sweet, cool girl.” But she recognizes that if there is more to her that she should work on, they all have issues. We all know Heather certainly has lots to work on. This snobby East Coast nut thinks it is perfectly normal to slither into her room as friend, and then once Alexis is heading back home, Heather thinks it’s equally acceptable to blame lots of things on her, while talking negatively behind her back.
It’s No Picnic on that Beach
En route to their next adventure in the tour guide’s SUV, Gretchen Rossi is annoyed when Alexis thanks Vicki Gunvalson for stopping by the night before to see if she was okay. Gretchen also stopped by but Alexis wouldn’t let her in the room. Hyper-focused on herself and how events affect her, Gretchen thinks this means that Alexis didn’t value their friendship as much as she did. It never seems to occur to her that Alexis just wanted to be alone and that she was hurt that the one person she thought was her friend did not stick up for her during the trail-side trail.
When the women hit the gorgeous beach for what should be a relaxing picnic in paradise, the animals come out to play. The first is the raccoon who visits with hopes of snatching their snacks. Fortunately the raccoon comes and goes before Alexis pulls Gretchen aside and mentions that she didn’t like how she treated her the night before. She thinks that Gretchen focused on how she felt, rather than by showing sympathy to Alexis.
Determined to be right, Gretchen mentions that from her perspective, the problem with the kangaroo court scene, and its aftermath, was that Alexis let Vicki into the room, when she wouldn’t let Gretchen enter minutes before. Alexis says she just needed support from her; she didn’t want to hear how sad Gretchen was.
Like a hot head, Gretchen begins shouting her down about how hard it was on her to see Alexis sad. And then get this: she goes into how pretentious she thinks Alexis can be. Clearly Gretchen studied at the Caroline Manzo School of Diplomacy. I say that because expressing sympathy never entails scolding someone. It reminded me of that scene when Caroline set off to to dissuade Danielle from suing Ashely and her ineffective technique was to call Danielle “garbage.” Calling Alexis or anyone else names is definitely not the way to make any situation better.
Hearing her switch the conversation back to Alexis’s alleged phoniness makes me really understand why “Lex” didn’t want “Gretch” in her room. It also makes me get why Alexis gets defensive and mentions that they all talk about money and expensive things. Gretchen says this defensive reaction is the exact reason people think Alexis is pretentious. Really? I’m a person. And I can definitely see that Alexis was defensive, but it doesn’t make me think she’s pretentious and even if she is, who cares? No wonder Alexis happily dashes off for the airport. Even Vicki doesn’t blame her for leaving. Adios Costa Triste!
Not surprisingly, Tamra is glad Alexis is going. Heather and Gretchen claim they’re sad to say goodbye, but I don’t believe either of them. The macho girls and Heather are all wearing their brimmed men’s hats, gloating in Alexis’s departure which only inspires the animals to come out.
Tamra and Gretchen proceed to almost sexually assault Heather. Then they pounce on Vicki. If this occurred in nearly any other non-Housewives work environment, there would be a HUGE risk of lawsuits. Fortunately a monkey shows up to make the scene more civilized. They feed it bananas and the girls pack up for the next stop on their adventure.
Time for White Water Rafting
Heather wants to turn this into a discussion about how a) unlike Alexis she was able to plan her time better so she didn’t miss out on a great experience; and b) the balance of the boat may now be off because Alexis isn’t there. The truth is Heather really can’t swim and, as a result, she’s uncomfortable. What better way to deal with discomfort than to blame Alexis; right?
Melvin Jimenez, the heartthrob guide, isn’t prepared to deal with these women. They simply never shut up. Worse they’re shrieking screamers. Poor Melvin. Someone seems to have puke or choke wildly at the end or her ride. Gretchen and Vicki were truly frightened. Heather says goodbye and heads back to the OC. And then there were three. The three girls with their macho hats.
Red Stripes, Quick Snacks and a River of Tears
After the rafting is done and it’s officially Miller Time, the final three OC Housewives relax in a restaurant over what looks like Jamaican beer. Vicki is sad that she’s odd man out without a pink top. No that’s not true. As happy as Vicki is with Brooks and her new life, she’s sad about everything else: Briana’s elopement; the pink shirts; the fact that one of her costars will die one day; that the tree they planted in the jungle for Alexis may not survive. Oh it doesn’t stop there.
She’s worried that Donn is going to be sad without her. Not that he saw much of her during the last years of their marriage, but he loved her cooking. It’s not that she was ever home to cook, but in theory he loved every morsel of food she didn’t make. The problem was that the last couple of years she just wasn’t a very good “nester.”
She’s upset about her two failed marriages and her daughter’s health. She feels very alone. She feels like a loser. And the truth is I feel for nutty Vicki. Sure she’s got a little Jill Zarin in her, but she doesn’t have even half of Jill’s venom.
Sure she’s a queen bee. She’s self-centered and she’s done horrendous things in the past, but she definitely does have a softer side. The thing is she hides her softer side so well that it is very hard to find at times.
Still I know there is a nice girl in Vicki and the stone cold truth is that I feel for her because I am a crier too and because I know Vicki knows the difference between right and wrong. For that reason I am open to seeing her redeem herself.
Here’s to hoping she starts that very soon.
All photos are courtesy of BravoTV.com, unless otherwise indicated.
About the Author (Author Profile)
I am a New York City publicist who specializes in promoting luxury products and experiences and occasionally moonlight as a journalist.
Relatively new to the world of blogging, I have watched and enjoyed Bravo’s Housewives shows since the first season of the Real Housewives of Orange County. I created this blog over the 4th of July holiday of 2011 because I enjoy writing and love to figure out how to blend images and words to create something that is both visually compelling and interesting to read.