Last night's episode was all about partying and fighting, fighting and partying. It was the most violent episode yet and, sadly, had an actual death toll. Let's remember what happened together, shall we?
Bang! Clank! Boom! Crash! Stomp! Clomp! Shriek! Wail!
That is the sound of the Housewives coming for you, knocking things over and throwing lamps at your head and screaming big cartoon screams into the night. They are such terrible Jabberwockies, aren't they? Barking devil dogs who have run out of things to do so they've turned, out of boredom and hunger, to eat one another. Chomp! Slap! Moan!, they go as they eat each other's bones and hair and teeth and toes. Rrrrrrrippp goes the fabric of cheap expensive dresses, Shattterrrrr go glass walls or chandeliers or other tacky things they have in their bauble-filled homes. "Stop, stop..." their husbands say meekly, knowing that if their wives get eaten up, at least they'll finally have peace and quiet, a thin lonely silence finally filling their homes. At least they'll have that. Meanwhile all of us at home just clutch our ears and wither to piles on the floor and beg them furiously to shut up, please please shut up.
I mean to say that nothing happened on last night's episode. Nothing happened except for the same fight, three times. Three parties, three fights, three ounces of actual sophistication between the five of these broads (Bethenny was mostly absent this episode). That's all that happened on the show. I don't know how to write about it. I really don't. Let's just go party by party. I hope that's OK.
Purple-eyed Sonja had a party, the first of the evening. It was Couture & Cocktails, a festive event where the harpies of the canyon descend on her house, dropping down out of the coal-black sky on their brooms and alighting on her roof, their clattery hoof-shoes like metal rain on the shingles. They bring fashions with them — old witch things, blacks and murderous grays, blood red frocks imbued with potions. They're not things the women want anymore, they want to give them away. So they have a fabulous party for themselves and then, at the end of the night, they give the garments to a porter and they say "Go! Go! To the poor people! To your people!" and they run after the fellow out the door, champagne bottles and glasses in hand, their shoes off, wreaths of dead violets in their hair, the cold dawn breaking over the horizon, waving and laughing and doing giddy dances in the empty streets. It's really lovely, like a Bryn Mawr festival if Bryn Mawr was full of devils, and Sonja is the fearsome mistress of ceremonies. Everything was going swimmingly — the bloodletting room was easily accommodating heavy foot traffic, no one seemed to notice the goats' heads stuffed in the cabinet under the bathroom sink — until Jill Zarin and her husband, Limon Zerga, showed up. Oh ugh, huh? Ugh to that lady these days. So she was there looking all "I just pooped my dress" and her bulldoggish sidearm firearm LuAnn was standing hulking at her side, ready to defend da boss at all costs. And then who should enter but Alex McCord, the beanstalk that sprouted up when Jack threw the magic beans in the yard and went to go fiddle about in the barn. Alex knew that she'd have to address what happened last time with the "BETHENNY HATES YOU FOREVER AND EVER AMEN" message she'd given Jill. But would it work, would all be forgiven?
It wouldn't. Alex waved to Jill and began approaching, singing her little bone-dance walking song, "A rinky rinky dooooo / I'm coming for youuuuuu", but Jill put up her hand and said "No, no. Stawp right they-ah." And Alex came to a sudden halt, a sound like a xylophone tumbling down the stairs, and looked crestfallen. "A rinky rinky dink / I need a drink," she moaned as she scooted off in the other direction. LuAnn came over to Alex and told Alex that she was being so awful taking sides and everything, not realizing how she looked saying that while wearing her Team Jill fur jacket and smoking her Zarinista brand cigarillos. Alex shook her head and wouldn't listen. Then Limon Zerga came up and tried to tell her the same thing, his Team Jill underpants beginning to chafe, his wedding ring pulsating with a low thrum. Alex shook her head again and Jill just couldn't handle it, so she stormed off in tears, LuAnn tromping after her in her fur jacket and nothing else, a boombox slung over her shoulder playing her new hit single, "Assey Lassie, Oooo So Classy." Sonja sipped from her goblet of dragon's blood and as her snake, Hotspur, curled its way up her arm, she turned and whispered to it, "This isn't finished..."
And she was right! It wasn't finished, not by a longshot. We then moved on to an emaciated basilisk some call the Kelly killoren. The Kelly killoren is a North American cousin of the Amazon killoren, which are twice as poisonous. Kelly killorens mostly run in traffic and host parties thrown by made-up magazines. The made-up magazine in this case was, for a second time, Gotham magazine. Gotham did a party for the Kelly killoren and some photographs of streets she'd taken or something. Everyone was there. Ohhh everyone was there. Robert Loggia was singing songs with a big brass band (Rip Torn played the tuba) and Joyce DeWitt was working the coatcheck. It really was a very fancy affair. Kelly's photographs or whatever were beautiful (were there photographs?) and the champagne was flowing. LuAnn showed up. And you know what LuAnn brought? LuAnn brought a date.
This here is Cort. You gals ever met Cort? I picked him up, he was wearin' little Daisy D's and a mesh tank, hustlin' at a rest stop off 95. I said "Where you goin', Sugarshack?" and he said, "Anywhere but here, m'am." You believe that? Little Cort here called me m'am. So before you know it, his guitar 'n rollerskates are in the back of my convertible, and he's in the front seat and we got the Seger goin' and we're takin' pulls of Wild Turkey and I'm feelin' this fella, so I turn to him and I say "Hey Cort, you a fruit? I mean, clearly you're workin' fruit with that getup, but are you actual civilian fruit?" And he gets quiet for a second and he's just sittin' there, hair blowin', Seger's singin' about a brand new morning, and he looks real beautiful like, an angel or somethin', and I don't know if it's the Turkey or what, but I'm gettin' this real warm feelin' in my chest, like I could maybe be really into this dude, and he turns to me and he's got these big ol' watery eyes, and he says "I don't even know anymore, Lu. What I am, who I am. I think I'm just trying to move so fast that I can't ever stop to figure myself out." And, you know, I knew the tramp life, lived on the road for years 'n years 'n years, so I know what he's sayin'. So's I tell him, "Well, you figure it out and it's gals, I'd better be the first to know, ya dig?" And he laughs and takes a big gulp'a Turkey and he nods his head 'n says "Yes m'am." M'am. Cute fuckin' kid, huh? Cute fuckin' kid.
So that was a really nice moment for her, and a nice one for the show. It's too bad that horrible Jill and rag 'n bone Alex had to come and ruin it all. Jill was being weird and bitchy as ever this season and Alex was nervous. She was terribly nervous about running into Jillzy. But of course she had to, it was required. Simon, her lamppost of a husband, was there with her, dressed in a quilted velveteen smoking jacket, one droog-ish eye painted black, pointy witch booties he'd found on Sonja's roof (he'd been peering in longingly through the skylight at the Couture party) wedged on his feet. He said "Don't worry my dear, I'll be your wingman." This is a term they'd heard from young people and assholes, so they decided to use it. A wingman! Alex had never had a wingman before. Back in high school her "wingman" was her big backpack, stuffed with books because she was afraid to go to her locker between classes lest she be late. She loved that thing, drew pictures on it, adorned it with buttons and pins and keychains. When it had died — in the dull middle lull of college after she'd turned stoned and marshmallowy she'd callously thrown it out while home for Easter — she'd quietly mourned it long after. But now she had a real wingman, her wingman. Oh blessed wingman, take to the skies with me!, Alex thought. They entered the party. No Jill could defeat her. She was confident.
And then they walked in and all of a sudden there was a loud squeal and a bright bright light and when the pink mist had cleared her wingman, her Simon, was giggling furiously and sitting on the floor, tangled in Jill's legs. Seriously. That is actually what happened on the show. Simon!! How could you?? Say what you will about his purple-tint glasses, but at least Limon Zerga stands by his woman! Jill has back up. Alex has... a gigglemonster who just wants to be friends with the cool girls. The poor thing.
So that was supes dupes awkward and Alex went to go cry in the bathroom for a little while and whimper "I miss you, Backpacky," and then when she went out she walked by Jill and Jill was... Chipper! And pert! And cheery! It was kind of creepy. Had Simon somehow done something to her? Did he have a magical perfume that when smelled by Jill, turned her nice? Well, no, not really. Jill was just playing classic mean girl, pretending to be all breezy and whatevs, but with an obvious undercurrent of seething rage behind each dripping word. And Alex recognized it. Recognized it from way back then in those locker-scared days. So she said "OK, I'm out. Cohen, take your mic, Alex is done for the tonight." She threw her mic pack to the ground and left. Simon made a frowny face and said "Awww, sorry girlssss. Catch you on the text messages, laydays!!" and then he ran off, shouting "Waiiiittt!!!" to Alex. On the way home he begged her to buy him Pinkberry but Alex was too upset to do it so Simon just pouted in his room with the door shut for the rest of the evening, angry Kelly Clarkson ("My December"?) blaring late into the night.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet Other Lady. She has a bob-wedge haircut and she is another lady. Other lady is, it seems, going to be on the show from now on. So that's nice. It's nice to have... uh... another lady on this show... about ladies. To her credit, Other Lady does have a nice, bright white big-windowed apartment. That was her apartment, wasn't it? Well, whatever. It was a nice apartment. Other Lady was having a party for, um, stuff. I don't know whose party it was or what the party was all about, but it was a party and Other Lady was there, as were, erm, other ladies. Jill was there! Yay! And then Ramona was there. Oh Ramona. Ramona had been busy trying on re-wedding dresses, big white poofy affairs, because Ramona seems to have forgotten that she already had a big white poofy dress wedding, seventeen years ago, and that at re-weddings you don't really do all that silly stuff. But oh well. She'd brought Avery along with her and the poor girl had sat there trying desperately to make sure her braces didn't show, doing that horrible awkward lip tuck thing that all of us who suffered the ailment of metal robot clanking teeth can remember so vividly. And then Ramona would come out wearing a giant white cupcake and say "How do I loooook??" dull white cat's eyes glowing in her skull, softly humming "Hail to the Chief" because she thinks that's the wedding song. Avery would look at her with her doleful deer eyes and say "Um.... it's nice on the top..." and Ramona's face would streak quickly with an angry disappointment but then she would smile her tight minotaur smile and she'd say "OK! Well we'll just try another one!" Ramona wishes for something when it comes to her daughter, she just can't figure out what.
So anyway, she was all crazy with re-wedding fever when Bethenny called her and told her that her dad was dying and Ramona was actually very sober and empathetic and said correct things and that was rather remarkable. Then later Bethenny called to tell Ramona that her dad had died, so when Ramona arrived at the Other Lady party, she told Jill. Because she figured Jill needed to know. And Jill.... well, Jill esploded. Jill was so mad that Ramona hadn't told her earlier. That was Jill's reaction to the news. Not, "Oh my god, poor Bethenny." Not, "Oh I need to send her a note or flowers, when's the service?" Nope. She was mad at Ramona for making her seem out of the loop. Yay Jill! So she shrieked at Ramona for a while and finally Ramona said "Well maybe Bethenny didn't want you to know," and that sent a cold shiver through the room and Jill's hair burned the fiery red of Haephestus's forge. Other Lady tittered and tried to change the subject while Kelly sat there and grinned stupidly.
The tension was relieved, or at least shifted, when Alex arrived in a wobbly mood, itchy to start somethin'. And start somethin' she did, with Jill, right there in front of everyone. Basically she was all "How dare you get upset about this Bethenny thing," and then Jill interrupted her and Alex slapped her and Jill went flying back down on the glass table, breaking it into a million pieces. Stunned only for a second, Jill grabbed a fire poker and lunged at Alex, impaling the ostrich's left eye socket. Alex staggered back, everyone gasped. Alex reached for the poker and pulled it out with a sickening squish. Everyone stared in horror as Alex's eyeball regenerated and she wheeled the fire poker around and thunked it hard down on Jill's head. "You listen to me now!!" she bellowed as she struck Jill over and over and over again. "You are in high school! And while you're in high school, I'm in Brooklyn!" Though she was being horribly beaten with a fire poker by an angry giant at the time, Jill had to stop and snicker at that one, and I cannot blame her. All the other ladies, including Other Lady, didn't know what to do. Kelly just started making donkey laughs, Sonja was slithering around on the floor sucking up all the blood, and LuAnn was smoking a cigarette and filing her nails, thinking about Cort in an eeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini. Alex continued to whale on Jill with the poker until Jill found a sudden strength and did a sweep kick, sending Alex clattering to the ground. Jill lunged on Alex and turned her rings around and began slapping Alex about the face and neck with terrifying speed. Alex sputtered, blood filling her mouth, "No, tthhhtop! thhhtop! You're killing meeeee. Ohh Backpacky, I'm coming home..." But Jill persisted, her big heavy-jeweled rings gouging further toward bone with each slap. Finally there was a loud boom and Jill went flying back into a bookshelf, a gory red hole in her midsection. Ramona stood, holding a smoking shotgun. "This. Ends. Nowwww," she bellowed. The room fell silent. Jill coughed, Alex groaned on the floor. Ramona smiled, that strange swan's mystery of a smile. "Now, let's talk more about my wedding."
Alex moaned some more and crawled off for the door. She turned to the hostess as she made her way down the hall and said, "I'm tho thorry, thith mutht be a very thtrange party for you..." The hostess shrugged her shoulders. "Eh. No big deal." The scene came to a close as LuAnn hoisted the seriously injured Jill over her shoulder and said "Don't worry, I know a mob doctor who'll fix 'er up good as new. He owes me a favor anyway."
And that was pretty much that. Alex and Jill will not be friends, I don't think. So oh well. Bethenny's father passed away, which is a genuine sad thing, but now she's maybe in labor, so life ends and life begins.
Life ends and life begins, stories stop and stories start. Weddings happen again in sad slow motion, because people get old and slow down. Parties are saved and parties are ruined and parties are just parties, just moments in time, people huddled together, holding back the cold and the dark that surrounds us all.
Love is destroyed, love is made. Oh is love made. Cort comes to LuAnn's one rainy night and he is soaked and LuAnn gives him a silk robe to wear, "Let's get us out of our wet clothes," she says, pointing luridly to her panties. She serves him bourbon in a mug and before they know it they are rolling around on her faux bearskin rug, the fake fireplace channel flickering silently on the television, an acoustic version of "Push It" playing tinnily on LuAnn's jury-rigged Walkman stereo.
And as they finish and topple onto each other, a sweaty joined heap, LuAnn lights a cigarette and looks at Cort, his puddle eyes once again watery, but with a new happy sheen to them. She strokes his face with a long finger and says, in a husky whisper, "That was a long time coming, baby." Cort smiles and says "You have no idea." The Walkman plays a new song, "Up Where We Belong," and LuAnn chuckles at that song, some old private memory. "Fuckin' Cocker," she mutters, a flushed grin on her tanned Indian face. She kisses Cort on the cheek and then settles into his arms, they lie there together, basking in the glow of the fake TV fire. "Crackle crackle," LuAnn says, making Cort laugh. She sighs. She closes her eyes.
"Best damn party ever," she whispers. And it's true.