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'Real Housewives of New Jersey' reunion, Part 2: Hair pulling, hugs and handshakes

September 7, 2010 | 10:12 am


There are some things in life that are so bizarre, so unexpected that they need documentation -- such as a video -- as proof of occurrence. That said, Show Trackers, I can assure you I set my DVR for Monday night’s continuation of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey Reunion” in case an instant replay was needed -- as it most certainly. I can only hope you did the same (at least, those who own a DVR) because what unfolded was so very weird, it required evidence. That plus I’m nervous that Jill Zarin might call upon me one day to play back the tape -- you know how she loves video confirmation. 

And although our dear host Andy Cohen might have avoided the strength of Teresa, that doesn’t mean all the entertainment was gone. On Monday, we were reminded of Danielle’s geometrically challenged breasts and forced to rehash that which we had tried so hard to forget: Kim G. slithering down a stripper pole. Sprinkle in some name calling like “pig” and worse, and it was like the season never ended. Then, the unthinkable … the awkward … hugs (and a handshake).

Before we try to make sense of that last bit, a primer:

-- Danielle continued her "damsel-in-distress" routine by walking off the set … yet again. (Or maybe it was just her way of breaking in her heels?) With Jacqueline screaming to the heavens that Danielle was sleeping with married men and Caroline suggesting Danielle was stalking her, the Kelly Bensimon of the franchise felt bullied by the other gals and, naturally, walked off set to seek comfort from the one person who could stroke her hair without her worrying that clumps of it would be yanked off inadvertently: her hair stylist. Did anyone else find that Jacqueline’s behavior during this sequence caused a heavy case of eye rolling? Suddenly the beast within her had been awakened, but at that point my ability to care went into hibernation. 

-- “I need me a little Kim.” And, with that, Caroline’s wish was granted. Everyone’s favorite elderly lady (or maybe she’s just Teresa’s favorite?) joined in the nutty mix. Exactly what purpose she served was unclear, except to taunt Danielle and to damage the image of gardeners and pizza delivery guys everywhere. Oh, and then there was putting Teresa on blast on Twitter about her financial status (because what kind of show would this be if money weren’t everything?). She did everything except add any substantial clarity to the questions Caroline, who might have been Geppetto in a past life, wanted answered. 

-- As if Kim G.'s (a.k.a. Kim Who?) presence onscreen weren’t sad enough, Teresa offered to fight Danielle for monetary compensation. And we’re not entirely sure she was joking. Sure, she offered a slight chuckle, but it was as if she was trying to stare Andy into submission. What a spinoff that would be! It’s no secret that the “Skinny Italian” has had to adjust her spending habits, but her daughter Gia should be enjoying her childhood, not spending it coaching her mother on fighting techniques.

-- Andy did some hair pulling -- on a mannequin. Wanting to demonstrate the hair-pulling incident that gave Jacqueline’s daughter Ashley way too much screen time this season, Danielle brought a mannequin head with hair extensions sewn into the scalp. Dear Andy was solicited into yanking the hair, only he had to yank really, really, really hard. Oh, Andy. Perhaps you're the one who should take a tae kwon do lesson with Gia. We’ll give you a hot dog!

-- Then came the hugs. Danielle may have uttered the phrase “I’m done!” more times than Sammi on “Jersey Shore,” but that didn’t stop her from milking what’s left of her time on “Housewives.” (Bravo confirmed last week that she would not be returning for a third season). Jacqueline, who began the show with guns blazing, suddenly had an epiphany that all this nonsense just wasn’t worth it. First, she went in for a hug with Teresa -- not without having them all clutch their proverbial pearls. It was short, painless and awkward. But it would get more awkward -- way more awkward -- when she hugged it out with Jacqueline for a really, really long time. It was made more awkward by the phrases she whispered:  “I love you, and I don’t care who believes it.” Uh, things may be peachy between them, but Caroline wasn’t buying it, saying everything wasn’t lollipops and roses. She’s right. It should be lollipops and gummi bears. Or is this the wrong franchise? But Danielle did offer this olive branch: “I will contact my attorneys and make sure there is peace for everybody.” Love and light. Love and light.

In other news, Danielle has apparently stopped communicating with diner-loving Danny. And Caroline still won’t go to lunch with Kim G. 

With that, we say bye to the season. And no, that’s not a death threat.

Show Trackers, what did you think of Part 2 of the reunion? Are you glad it’s all over? Were you more amused with Caroline’s and Andy's facial expressions than with what actually unfolded on screen? What do you think about Jacqueline’s sudden decision to make amends with Danielle? Will you miss Danielle on the show? Who should replace her next season?

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Bravo