'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' recap: Face-off
As the biblical proverb says, after pursuing one's enemies and smiting them at the hindmost, one should slap on a robe and partake in a Hydro-Light Facial.
Or, at least, such are the beliefs of one Adrienne Maloof, who interrupted what was likely a grueling week of shopping and lunching for the Housewives to invite the girls over for a relaxing spa day — which just happened to be located in the sprawling, staffed quarters of a complete facility installed in the basement of Adrienne's bazillion-square-foot home.
The rich are different from you and me, and one of the ways they are different in Beverly Hill is that, while many of us struggle to maintain our drip-coffee machines, they outfit their homes with entire businesses for their convenience. (Granted, if your house is that big, finding your way out of it so you can participate in the commerce of the actual world is probably too much of a chore.)
But Adrienne's spa — which renders all other Housewives' battalions of devoted stylists and hairdressers just so many Scrunchies — wasn't the only elaborate underworld in the episode. Lisa's friend Mohamed, who is planning an engagement party for her daughter Pandora that will feature in the next episode, has placed what seems to be the entire country of Morocco in his basement. His warren of tiled rooms and "I Dream of Jeannie"-esque tufted cushions lacks only its own "Arab Spring" protesters.
But back to the spa. Even the bejeweled and bespackled Housewives were impressed by Adrienne's set-up (Lisa: "So she just happened to have this across the street and never told me!"), but they quickly adjusted to the fleet of tables and red-velvet cupcakes. The Richards sisters even sneaked off in their Maloof-issued robes for some time on the children's trampoline.
The true tension came from Brandi, who has replaced Camille as the blond to browbeat. Brandi is hipper, younger, taller, thinner and glowier, with higher-level modeling experience (though I'd advise her to lay off the procedures — she's getting Joker-face). She's foul-mouthed and lacking a filter, curiously sending the other ladies, who had previously battled over whose Playboy spread was most appropriate, to such lengths as spelling out the "B" word — presumably to assure viewers that not only do their sons not pee on the lawn, but that they are actually to the manor born.
Thus, what was supposed to be a relaxing day became a taxing day. Kim loudly proclaimed across the room that she would not even speak to Brandi, while Adrienne interrupted Kyle's massage to ask if she'd make a peace offering to speak to her at all. Brandi's intimation that Kim was using drugs edged out all other faux pas in an evening of gaming and defaming.
But among this panel of strangely attired judges, Brandi, admirably, held her own. She apologized to Kyle but also pointed out, correctly, that she was being ganged up on yet again and held to a higher standard than Kim and Kyle, who'd set the tone by saying they didn't want to be on her team and making snide remarks throughout — pretty rude for anyone holding herself up as an avatar of politesse.
After Kyle haughtily received the apology on behalf of her sister and took her leave, Taylor gently praised Brandi for offering the apology. "That was over the top," Taylor remonstrated, duck lips pursing. Speaking for millions of viewers who've watched Kim deteriorate through two seasons, Brandi didn't step down. "But ... was it?" she asked.
As those who hit "Watch What Happens Live" after the show know, Kyle called in to apologize to Brandi live on the air — oh, that Kyle, always spinning — and both ladies agreed that lots more happened in the season to mitigate that first explosion, and that they were in a better place now. No matter. As Andy sported Dana's 25K sunglasses and read the results of the night's poll, the viewership was clear. "Should Brandi have apologized to Kim?" Majority: no.
No calls yet from LeAnn.
— Lizzie Skurnick
Photo: "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" cast members, clockwise from upper left, Lisa Vanderpump, Adrienne Maloof, Taylor Armstrong, Kim Richards, Brandi Granville, Dana Wilkey, Kyle Richards and Camille Grammer. Credit: Richard McLaren / Bravo