Before we begin ... "Apples" (as in NY), and "Oranges" (as in Orange County) ... get it? It took me a second.
As we all know, there have been Housewives who came back; like Bethenny Frankel, Luann de Lesseps, NeNe Leakes, Sheree Whitfield, and OC"s own Lydia McLaughlin, but they all rejoined their respective ensembles, whereas Miss Fancy Pants Dubrow has gone from being fired to rejoining the show as the main focus. This bitch must have one damn good agent, because she's not only the central focus, but the entire show is ALL about Heather; her family, her home, her many careers, and even when someone else gets a little air time, there's Heather, mentoring everyone else's life. As if this isn't enough, we're now even delving into Heather's college life and personal issues with her mother, whom is a real spit fire, but more on that in a moment. At this point, I am wondering; what does Heather have on the producers (or Andy), that they have all but handed this franchise over to the Dubrows. I know it ain't because of the power they yield on the success of Botched or 7 Year Stitched, because the ratings for those are so bad that they make LVP's Overserved look like a hit.
So Heather and Gina jet off (private of course) to Syracuse, along with Max and Nick, whose first year in college is being used as a story line for Heather. Syracuse just happens to be Heather's alma mater. While there, Heather broadcasts her podcast in front of an assembled group of underclassmen (and probably their mothers). Heather talks about how she came to the college a big fish in a small pond and found herself somewhat lost at college, and then reveals to the group that she gained 30 pounds, but winning the Greater Miss Syracuse pageant changed all that! Someone needs to tell Miss Fancy Pants that pageants are no longer the path to success ... just ask the current Miss America, whoever she is.
When the foursome returns to NYC, Heather leaves Max and Nick at the hotel to
scarf down a few THC gummies and order room service, while Heather and Gina go out for a night on the town. They visit Heather's old sorority house where huge banners are on display reading "Welcome Home Heather!" and all I'm thinking about is where are one of those Ghostfaces from Scream when we need them? Heather and Gina get totally trashed in the Big Apple, eating pizza and dropping crumpled $20 bills on the sidewalk without even looking for them.
The next evening, Heather, Gina, and the twins, meet Gina's parents (remember they're from nearby Lonk Oiland), and Heather's mother, Carole, and her Aunt at NYC's Tao for dinner. It turns out that meeting Carole is easily the best part of the trip. They say that we all become our parents, and as Gina says, meeting Carole explains A LOT! The second Carole sits down, she tells the waitress, “I don’t mean to be rude, but this is NOT how you set a table ... THIS is how you set a table (after re-arranging the flatware).". Carole then orders her martini "Very dry, and I would like a twist but very, very dry ... and I would like the ice from the shaker on the side please ... again, very very dry please". Heather pretends to be mortified, but then jumps in with her own competing drink order. "I'd like a Silver Patron and soda on the rocks in a wine glass, and can you squeeze a bunch of limes in there? Do you have fresh juice? Can I get some grapefruit juice on the side, please?”. Heather tells us how strict her mother was, and how her mother always had a plan, and a schedule, hilariously clueless to the fact that SHE IS HER MOTHER!
Back in Orange County, Shannon is having Emily, Noella, and Jen over for a cooking lesson. When they arrive, Shannon’s friend Lisa and her daughter are there to help her prepare, but as soon as the other ladies arrive, they are dismissed to go eat dinner somewhere else. This is classic Housewive bitchery; dismissing your real friends so they don’t expose the "real" you on camera to your fake "TV" friends. Shannon is going to teach them all how to cook, complete with chef coats and hideous hair nets, but of course they are completely uninterested. In an effort to present themselves as "modern women", the three of them begin competing; proudly telling us that they are incapable of even boiling water, as if being total morons and lousy mothers who are unable to provide for their children is something to be proud of.
They sit down and start downing the tequila, and Shannon is obviously told by the producers to call Heather, who sends them straight to voicemail. They are then told to discuss Shannon's alleged jealousy of Gina (a stupid story line that Emily has somehow managed to create). The thing about this conversation is that, well, no one cares. However, Gina is right; Shannon can’t be happy for anyone else’s success.
Jen says she needs to leave because she needs to deal with Ryan, who is tossing around the idea of moving out for a month, "for the sake of their relationship". Ryan is working so hard on this relationship that he left Jen to do couple’s counseling alone. Jen casually mentions to Emily that Ryan also wants his name on everything, including the home. Lawyer Emily then points out that this is classic "before the bomb drops behavior", and that Ryan is merely setting himself up financially before dumping Jen. But regardless, Jen insists on leaving, as the always ride or die girlfriend, Noella, whispers to Emily, “’Cause we all don’t have stuff we’re dealing with?” Yeah, Noella, everyone has stuff to deal with, but Jen is trying to fix her marriage while you are already downloading the "Licking for Lesbians" app on the phone that James is still paying for.
After Jen leaves, they all jump into the pool that Shannon wants us to believe she has not been in until this night. Noella frolicks in the pool completely topless, but thankfully, we are spared Emily's biggo udders. They coax "fun" Shannon into the pool who is still in her Spanx and chef coat, but has traded in her chef's hat for a woolen ski cap (I'm guessing the gummy bears had something to do with it). Gotta hand it to Shannut; if she can’t make it sexy, she can at least make it funny, and fun they're having. In fact, with all that screaming going on, I would be curious to know how the neighbors (who are 15 ft. away) deal with it. I'm guessing that ((loud)) scenes like this are why OC is particularly persnickety about allowing filming in their neighborhoods (apparently Chateau Dubrow finally got a variance). In fact, they’re having so much fun that even Archie Beador hops in, doggy paddling towards Noella, mistaking her tits for tennis balls. Meanwhile we the viewers continue to ponder, whatever happened to bitchface Nicole?