White Lies and Black Eyes


Believe it or not, it’s only day three in San Diego, which feels like an eternity. I’m already starting to forget what snow and the other Angie looks like.  Jen stumbles out of bed surrounded by her Marilyn Monroe wig and costume, half-eaten pizza slices, and a face still full of makeup from the night before. As she pulls herself together, she gets an urgent text from Heather which reads,  “I have a problem can u come to my room. I’m serious.”


Heather greets Jen at the door wearing big dark sunglasses, which is nothing unusual in the real housewife world, especially on "the morning after" ... that is until she takes off her the sunglasses to reveal a (semi) swollen black eye.    Jen feign shock and then gets some ice to put on the eye.  She asks what happened, but Heather plays it cagey and says she doesn’t know.   Huh?  Heather says, “I don’t want to get anyone in trouble, Jen ... that’s why I need you to help me figure out if someone wants to talk about what really happened last night. We need a cover story.”  


What in the holy hell am I watching and why is Heather speaking in code? If they are going to make up a cover story, wouldn't they be doing it off camera?  Oddly, this suspenseful thriller then turns  to full farce as Lucy and Ethel start brainstorming good covers:  Spider bite? Peanut allergy? Late night bootycall gone bad? Bar fight? “We need a good cover story for this eye because I don’t want any of the ladies to get in any trouble,” Heather reiterates before they decide that she’ll say she just doesn’t know what happened, which by the way, gets very old by the time the episode ends. 


To see which cover is going to fly, they call Meredith to the room.  Heather does a repeat performance pulling off her sunglasses, and Meredith literally gasps.  She's even more shocked than Jen, especially since they were all together until 4:00 am.  It turns out that menacing door knob jiggle that we’ve seen for weeks in the coming attractions was Jen, Meredith, and Angie, but we also see them all leave with Heather seemingly unscathed. Jen steps out, and Meredith keeps questioning her.  Heather whispers, “I don’t wanna talk about it.", and I"m thinking then why in the F did you ask to come to your come?  Meredith knowingly replies' “You know what happened, don't you?”


We watch them crafting this cover story, we still don't know exactly what they’re trying to cover up; however, they are obviously suggesting that least one of the women is responsible.  In my mind, it was Cousin Witless, who may have finally retaliated after Heather shoved her just one too many times.  Also, after watching Whitney violently destroying Heather's work of art on the beach earlier that day, it's not hard to imagine her clocking Heather in the face.  But maybe she fought with Jen Shah, and Heather is just desperately trying to protect her, especially as she's about to stand trial.


When all the women gather to plan their day, Whitney (obviously cued by production) suddenly asks  about the topless shenanigans from the night before, which is of course just a thinly veiled opportunity to talk about Heather's black eye.  So Heather cuts right to the chase and says, “I think we all know what happened; I just think we don’t want to talk about it.”  Whoa!  OK, now this is just getting weird.  So Heather performs her third matinee of the morning, and pulls down her sunglasses.  They are all shocked, and again Heather says she doesn’t know what happened, but this time she plays it a little differently.  As Lisa points

out in a talking head,  Heather contradicts herself on what she just said about them all knowing.  Confused yet?


Lisa says that it looks like somebody clocked her, Heather says, “Maybe somebody did, and they don’t want to talk about it.”  Heather dearheart, sweetums ... this dramatic teasing got old in the first five minutes, and a whodunit only works when we ultimately find out whodunit. Imagine if Jessica Fletcher said, “I don’t wanna talk about it,” or if Columbo kept a suspect’s identity to himself because he wanted to protect, I dunno ... say Jen Shah.


Whitney is horrified that Heather is trying to sweep it under the rug while alluding to the fact that someone obviously punched her, but nonetheless, sweeping it under the rug is exactly what happens.  So much for my theory about Witless slugging Heather; now I'm leaning towards Jen.  But then again, Heather has the fastest healing black eye that I've ever seen, because by the time they leave for a day of go-carting, her eye is no longer swollen shut, and very little concealer is even needed.  Speaking of eyes, I'm now side-eyeing the hell out of this entire story line.



At the go-cart races, Heather decides to pair up with Lisa because "she’ll be too busy talking about herself" to grill her on black eye-gate, and in the very next (hilarious) scene, she is proven correct.  Meanwhile, all the other women conjecture about the assault in their respective death traps as they zoom around the public streets of San Diego.  Sidenote:  It blows my mind that any city in California would allow go-carts on public streets; I mean, this wouldn't even be legal in Bumfuck, KY. 



After surviving go-carting, the group splits up.  Meredith, Jen, Heather, and Angie head for the proverbial winery, and Whitney, Lisa, and Danna opt to go roller-skating on San Diego's iconic boardwalk.  Wearing short shorts and with ice cream cones in hand, they look like the opening credits of Three’s Company. Meanwhile, the other ladies are sipping wine and scarfing down a charcuterie board.  Heather tells us, "Just once, it would be nice to enjoy a meal that requires utensils!"  Of course both conversations lead to black eye-gate.  Whitney is officially now on record of suspecting Jen, and Heather still doesn’t want to talk about it.


Luckily, there are other dramas to discuss, and it appears we back on Lisa’s hot-mic moment.  After testing the waters with some infidelity rumors and performing sexual favors for Vida, Meredith is now fixated on the Barlow's SEC (Security Exchange Commission) filing.  Technically, Jen is the one who’s bringing it up, but Meredith planted the seed and is ready to harvest. “They have to disclose her debts, and they do have a loan from ((BLEEP)) way below market value,” Meredith tells us. Is ((BLEEP)) the same ((BLEEP)) from the Utah Jazz tickets?


Meanwhile on the boardwalk, Danna is telling Lisa about Meredith talking about the very same SEC filing.  Gee, what are the odds of that?  Yes, thank you producers.  As Whitney eggs Danna on, Lisa enraged, and  bringing her inner Drita D'Avonzo (Mob Wives) out to play.  In her mind, how dare Meredith do the very thing Lisa got in trouble for!  Lisa concludes, “I don’t pop pills, bitch ... you do."  Snap!~


As both groups simultaneously discuss the Barlow's finances and define SEC  filings, all I can think about is how much you must have to hate someone to read a multipage financial document on the air.  Also, as Jen tells her group that Lisa is the richest bitch among them, I'm recalling Jeff Lewis recently saying the same thing, and revealing that the Barlow home depicted on the show is not their real home.  



Back at the house, Angie K(atsanevas) is throwing a Greek-themed dinner (she's Greek, get it?).  Each of the ladies are dressed as a Greek goddess of their choosing, and Heather shows up wearing a bedazzled eye patch that Jen just happened to be traveling with.  However, Lisa apparently didn't get the memo, and as Heather points out, looks like Britney Spears at the Grammies.  Speaking of Lisa, she is ready to rumble since the SEC conversation, and as they all sit down at the table. Whitney waste no time confronting the issue, and blurts out, “Who talked about an SEC filing about Lisa?”  Meredith denies talking about it “other than in passing,” but luckily, Angie is right here to set the record straight, which she has to do when Lisa exposes that she ratted the other ladies out.


According to Lisa, this is all about “the Rant.” We’re sitting in the shit, doing laps in it even, instead of moving forward through it. But Meredith insists that it isn’t just about the Rant and that Lisa has done a multitude of little things that have added up. Like talking about her behind her back, not calling when her dad was sick, and “canceling my makeup artist on me at the eleventh hour in the height of a global pandemic when I couldn’t get somebody else.” Honestly, it seems like Meredith might be madder about that than the “garbage whore” thing, which is fair. When we eventually get into a battle of semantics over whether it was the Rant or the Tirade, Heather has to jump in.


“I think my eye might be a metaphor for our friendships,” she says, and she’s right because neither makes any sense. But this does prompt Whitney to ask once again what happened, but all she gets is a warning: “If you get a secret knock on your door, don’t answer.” This show knows no genre. Heather’s confessional producer doesn’t have much luck trying to get a straight answer either. “First rule of fight club,” Heather says before saying that the person she’s trying to protect … is herself.