Some days you wake up and you want to just roll over and go back to bed and never get out, no matter how much Lexapro you take. Some days you wake up and you’re in some strangers bed and you don’t know where your other sock is so you just walk home without it. Some days you wake up and you just jump out of bed and you want to shout someone’s name loud and clear into the distance so that it reverberates off all the mountain tops and creates an echo so loud that all the snow is dislodged and there is a giant avalanche and your body is crushed under the crisp cold weight. Today is one of those last mornings, and I want to cry out only one name: Brandi.
Oh, Brandi Glanville. The world is too much for you and you are too much for the world, and last night’s episode of Real Ex-Wives of Prenup Valley was your episode. You owned it, you owned the whole damn thing. First Brandi got a visit from her literary agent and they talked about her new book which, ever so conveniently, is available for pre-sale right now. Yes, Brandi wrote a book. Yes, someone with a body like that who is six feet tall and absolutely gorgeous is also literate and has accomplished something most of us only dream about. It’s enough to hate her.
Also enough to hate her is her photo shoot for Beverly Hills Lifestyle magazine, a little print publication that I swear was invented for this show. What are all these magazines that Housewives are always on the cover of? They have one of these shoots on every show with all these magazines that you don’t even know where they print or who advertises in them. Are these the free magazines that are sitting in your doctor’s office or are in those plastic boxes on the street corner? Are they given away in gift bags at celebrity events that neither I nor my friends are ever invited to, because I have never even once heard of any of these things. I mean, I’ve heard of Cat Fancy but that doesn’t mean I want to be on the cover (which I actually do) so maybe it’s best I never heard of them? I don’t know. I’m so confused. Anyway, Lisa thinks it will be good for Brandi’s career and the magazine seems to be owned by Beverly Leslie from Will & Grace so everything is good. Everything is just dandy.
But the best part about Brandi, forever and always, is that she just can’t help herself and tells the truth. You know all those annoying assholes who are like, “I have no filter!” and they feel like they can get away with saying any old thing they think because they “have no filter” and they say you look fat in your jeans and then they laugh and say, “Oh, I have no filter, I’m wacky!” Those people, they’re just mean. Also they’re usually not funny. Brandi seriously has no filter but she is not mean, she just can’t help herself from saying what she (and everyone else is thinking). She can’t lie. It’s like she’s stuck in a Jim Carrey movie, but she doesn’t even try to lie, she just comes right out and tells the truth. Maybe she was hexed by a witch or something, but this is how Brandi lives, and it is amazing. Come to think of it, maybe it wasn’t a curse by a witch but a blessing by a fairy.
The best part was when all the girls are in Ojai (more on that in a bit, of course) and they’re at dinner and Brandi and St. Camille the Virgin of Grammer are sitting next to each other and talking crap about their famous ex-husbands. Brandi starts cutting on her ex, the abtastic actor Eddie Cibrian and his new wife Leann Rimes and how they renewed their vows after only a year of marriage. Everyone agrees that it seems desperate, and Brandi just rolls her eyes at it and makes fun of it right there on camera. That is what Brandi does because that is how Brandi feels. She can not put on a smile and pretend like she thinks this is OK to keep the peace with her ex-husband. She’s just like, “Screw that, renewing your vows is dumb.” And considering the renewing of vows is something that was totally created so that married people with reality shows can get married on camera, that is a bold statement to make.
Telling the truth doesn’t work that well for everyone. Remember when St. Camille tried to tell the truth in Season 1 and she was the world’s worst villain? Yes, but it works for Brandi. She can’t do anything but and that makes us love her. I think it’s because she includes herself in the truth and is self-effacing in a really genuine way. She indicts herself as often if not more than the rest of the world. That makes us just want to take her out to dinner and get an honest critique of the world. Honesty is one value that most Housewives are short of.
St. Camille is back to being honest, well, at least when it comes to how little her ex-husband’s penis is. Actually the reason she reached Sainthood is because she kind of stopped telling the truth and went with the gloss sheen of reality television. But sometimes we still get that old Camille. When all the women are in the back of the cab on their way to Ojai (don’t worry, we’re getting there) someone brings up that Kelsey Grammer, her sitcom mogul ex, just got a tattoo near his nether region. “Must be a small tattoo!” Camille chuckles. Now that is some great honesty that probably isn’t that honest. Then she says that her new Greek boyfriend can get her entire name, that is about 17 million letters long, tattooed on his schlong and still have room for a tribal graphic, a bird, and a life-size rendition of the Sistine Chapel. OK, that’s probably a lie too, but we want to hear them both. Who doesn’t want to hear about a big dick? Or a little dick? Medium dicks, boring. They’re about as interesting as a conversation about beige, a tied soccer match, or a Senate bill hoping to preserve the current tax cuts for the rich. But a big dick, well, I’m all ears.
Speaking of boring things, we now need to talk about Lisa and Adrienne Queen of the Maloof (which is a race of ant people that live beneath the mountain) and all I have to say is *deep sigh*. That’s it. They both wore too much frosted pink lip gloss for two adult women having wine and Adrienne stammered out a ridiculous apology while Lisa sat there with a half smile waiting for Adrienne to say, “I’m sorry,” and she finally did. Lisa said thank you and that was that. Adrienne wanted an apology for some imaginary crime that Lisa perpetrated on her that still makes no sense, but she never got one. She’s all made about it, so we know this feud will continue, but this chapter is closed for now. Moving on.
All the ladies are getting ready for their first big trip of the season. You know how this works – there is always bigger drama when everyone has to travel, so someone “arranges” a couple of trips each season and then everyone has to go on one big vacation together usually somewhere out of the country. That’s when the big guns come out. Anyway, this time Kim Richards is arranging a trip to Ojai. What? You do not let Kim Richards plan the trip. That is like letting a 7 year-old decide what you’re having for dinner. Somewhere between the PB&J course and your ice cream with Fruity Pebbles sprinkled on top of it and drowned in chocolate milk, you realize that something went horribly awry. I half expected the ladies to pull up to two double wides somewhere under a tree in a valley and Kim to go, “Isn’t this great? It’s so rustic!” That’s what happens when you like Kim Richards plan the trip. You’re either going to end up at a sleep over in Chuck E Cheez or a crack house somewhere near Fresno. Nothing good comes of Kim Richards planning the trip.
But she finds this nice big mansion at some Ojai Inn, Spa, and Pet Cemetery and everyone just thinks it’s so nice. They pull up and St. Camille says, “I hope I can afford something like this after my settlement.” Remember what I said about her not telling the truth. Please. Camille could have 20 of these if she wanted. Yolanda Bananas Foster shows up too after flying back in her private jet from a concert in D.C. and then she rolls up and is like “Oh, what a nice little house,” like she just has one of these as her guest cottage in the back. Eye roll. Then all the other ladies show up and there’s a big showdown about who is going to share rooms because (gasp!) how dare they expect grown people on a vacation to share rooms with each other for even one night. And in twin beds! See, this is what happens when you let Kim Richards plan the trip. Disaster.
Then they go to dinner and Brandi and Camille talk about their awful exes and then Brandi and Kim, who ended up sitting next to each other get into a heart to heart. This is why you can’t help but love Brandi. She tells Kim that, she knows they had their differences, but they’re the same. “Kim, I know you. We’re basically the same. We’ve both been disappointed. And your daughters, I met them at a party I was at near my house, and they’re great. But I know how you feel. They’re growing up and you’re used to them in the house. It’s the same as when Eddie takes my kids. You put so much of your life into them and they are everything you do and your house is so full of life and noise and then they’re gone and what do you do? You cry and you drink. You do something to fill up that void. Anything. And it’s just so much easier to rub salve on that wound to make it feel better than to really let it heal, you know?”
Kim is just across the table nodding her head in agreement. “I think I like this girl,” she groans. “It feels so…odd.” And then Kim says that, maybe if she wasn’t “sick” they could have connected before. And Kim knows. Kim knows the pain Brandi felt. Kim knows that your man cheats on you and you get slutty and you party too much and you ignore your kids and you dull the pain any way you know how. Kim knows that you can’t always fight back, that sometimes it’s bigger than you and you can’t even fight. You just have to lie there and find whatever fun you can and try to get out from under it, even if being under it is exactly where you want to be right then.
Kim knows and Kim cries. But it’s not a sad cry. It’s a triumph cry. It’s a “I get you and I’m sorry you suffered in the way I suffered and we’re both going to get through this” cry. It’s like when I cry whenever some gay teen comes out on television. It’s a good cry. But Adrienne says, “Uh oh. Someone’s crying!” But she doesn’t say it once, she says it like nine times and then Brandi just says, “Shut the fuck up,” because that is what Brandi is thinking and that is the truth. Really, Adrienne, like Brandi said, if you’re concerned about your friend ask what is going on at the other end of the table, don’t call attention to yourself by calling attention to someone else’s tears. Also, let Brandi and Kim have their sad divorcee moment at the end of the table. They’re next to St. Camille anyway, who will annoint them in the oil of the first wives and they will receive benediction. Don’t be all calling them out.
And under the table, Brandi brushed her foot into Kim’s and looked deep down into her eyes and Kim saw and they had a moment, a bit of electricity between them that forged them together. Unbreakable their bond, of two women who have been on the bottom and one who got back up. That look was more than a welcome it was a hand. It was thrusting a hand down at Kim Richard, still trying to scramble her way up a hill and it was helping to pull her up. It was helping to show her the way. With that look, the rest of the world melted away and Kim Richards finally felt a lightness on that day?
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[Photo Credit: Bravo]