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Memory Lane: Seasons 1-5

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Since we are reminiscing about old times here and there, I figured we needed a home for just that because Ramona and Luann are not ghost's yet and they were in old episodes. Speaking of Luann, all the posts about the Carol and Sonja scene with the designer had me flashing back to memorable moments from season 5 and...remember when Luann was talking about IVF and then choked on an egg? LOL

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This was after pirate-gate. Heather and Luann were at a restaurant and Heather asked how she and Jacques were doing. Luann acted like everything was good and said she was going to go through with the IVF...and then reality had it's own opinion.

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Season 3 is my favorite.  It was glorious, Scary Island and all.

Johan face, candy moocher. Johan face. That season really was a home run for them. After the reunion and Kelly's anti-bullying BS, plus seeing her in the tabloids doing fine, floating around with hotties, knowing nothing seems to penetrate Kelly Land, I don't feel guilty anymore about enjoying the hell out of it!

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I never watched the early seasons, but am literally, right this moment, watching Season 1, Ep. 1.  I'm struck by how different the show was back them.  It looks like an actual documentary.   I do love how the opening scene of the series is Ramona dancing (terribly) and talking about how sexy she is.  I guess things didn't change that much, eh? :)

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Yeah, it was more of cameras following them around as they went about their daily activities. Now it mostly seems to revolve around securing their RHONY jobs and getting air time with fake events and petty fights.

 

Ep. 1 of season 1 is one of my favorites mostly because of the story of how Ramona and Mario met. So fitting. I wonder what color ruffled-thong his mistress wore to get his attention.

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Yeah, it was more of cameras following them around as they went about their daily activities. Now it mostly seems to revolve around securing their RHONY jobs and getting air time with fake events and petty fights.

Ep. 1 of season 1 is one of my favorites mostly because of the story of how Ramona and Mario met. So fitting. I wonder what color ruffled-thong his mistress wore to get his attention.

That was when I began to wonder about Jill. She was so pissy about not being invited to Ramona's. She was so entitled from the first episode.

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Bravo should call a come to Jesus meeting and lock the writers, editors and producers of the RHO franchises in a conference room and make them re-watch all the past episodes. Maybe they'd learn that less is sometimes more. 

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It feels so good to be able to talk about 'Scary Island' without being slapped on the wrist for it.

 

8DIqCqD.gif?1

 

I don't think this season can or will ever be topped. 

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I've finished Season 1. The Good:

1. LuAnn's leather dress at the Girls' Night + Simon dinner.

2. Avery. That girl's eye rolls at her mother were epic!

3. Bethenny's snark at Alex and Simon's broken down home. Speaking of A and S...

The Bad:

1. Alex and Simon. Jesus those two were so ridiculous. What a bunch of pathetic wannabes. I cringed when they were looking through the NYT style section for a photo of Alex. So embarrassing.

Here I come Season 2!

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I loved how at the end of the shopping spree in St. Barth's (because going to the Hamptons was almost akin to being a work) Simon said they spent "a lawt" and whipped out the AMEX Black Card and mentioned it was made of titanium. Too bad, titanium Black Card and all, Alex's hair always made it look like their checks were made of bouncy material, eh?

 

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I've finished Season 1. The Good:

1. LuAnn's leather dress at the Girls' Night + Simon dinner.

2. Avery. That girl's eye rolls at her mother were epic!

3. Bethenny's snark at Alex and Simon's broken down home. Speaking of A and S...

The Bad:

1. Alex and Simon. Jesus those two were so ridiculous. What a bunch of pathetic wannabes. I cringed when they were looking through the NYT style section for a photo of Alex. So embarrassing.

Here I come Season 2!

I'm so glad you're watching and posting. I just can't rewatch them. But I love to read everyone's comments and they bring back memories of such foolish lines and actions from these women!

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I loved how at the end of the shopping spree in St. Barth's (because going to the Hamptons was almost akin to being a work) Simon said they spent "a lawt" and whipped out the AMEX Black Card and mentioned it was made of titanium. Too bad, titanium Black Card and all, Alex's hair always made it look like their checks were made of bouncy material, eh?

For as much money as those two nitwits spent on clothes ("More than five figures, but not quite six..."--Simon), they sure dress like shit. Alex's mustard yellow, short-sleeved pantsuit at the season finale dinner was horrid. Even worse than Ramona's hot pink sequined Barbie gown.

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For as much money as those two nitwits spent on clothes ("More than five figures, but not quite six..."--Simon), they sure dress like shit. Alex's mustard yellow, short-sleeved pantsuit at the season finale dinner was horrid. Even worse than Ramona's hot pink sequined Barbie gown.

Alex was proof that some people just have a bad sense of style, and I like Alex. It went beyond bad taste (which she had), she just could not pull a look together. It never worked on her. Now Simon had equally cheesetastic taste, but was much better at pulling together a look and selling it. He seemed much more comfertable in the Euro-trash clothes they both favored. Alex always managed to look like she was wearing something itchy.

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cheesetastic

Not only does it accurately describe the Van Kempen sense of style, but it also accurately describes Alex and Simon, period.

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I loved Ramonja in Season 5. I know they could be annoying (there was one formal event when someone was talking and they WOULD NOT SHUT UP -- they kept talking about the wine glasses -- and Carole noted that when they're not the center of attention, they don't know how to act) -- but they consistently cracked me up, especially in St. Bart's when Aviva called them unwelcoming and ungracious and they looked up different meanings of white trash.

 

"White trash: Hillbilly ..."

"A hillbilly can be welcoming. Hello. Welcome to my trailer."

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I watched the first part of the reunion of season 4, and now remember why I hated that season! But as usual, there were hidden gems here and there that had me laughing. In the reunion, Kelly tells us that Sonja flashing her bits at her during the photo shoot really hurt her. lol We hear Ramona asking her if she ever looks at her own vagina, and then, Andy hit it out of the park with: "Sonja, was your vagina rude to Kelly?"

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LOL.  You're right.  Once in  while somebody will say something so spontaneous and funny that it makes you forget that the other 58 minutes sucked.


This wasn't from an actual episode but the photographer sure caught the essence of the episode that inspired him/her.  This is my most favorite picture of those zany McCord/VanKempens ever.

 

mccord080630_1_560.jpg

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Oh my gosh, everyone is vacationing out in the Hamptons and they're lounging in the inflatable pool in their backyard? That was how the episode went, right???

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Yes.  IIRC, the scene had the other ladies having a fabulous time in the fabulous (?) Hamptons and then cut to Silex and kids in the inflatable pool in their Brooklyn backyard.

 

However, in the episode, I don't believe Alex was looking so lovely - I remember frizzy hair, blotchy skin and a sweaty Simon.  That's why I love this photo.  I think this is how Simon and Alex imagined they looked.

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It really could have been from the episode! It's amazing that 2 minutes of non-suck can keep us coming back for more. We expect so little!


I think they showed Ramona's back yard with the big old pool and the lake somewhere in view before the Alex and Simon scene..

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However, in the episode, I don't believe Alex was looking so lovely - I remember frizzy hair, blotchy skin and a sweaty Simon.  That's why I love this photo.  I think this is how Simon and Alex imagined they looked.

 

Haha, yes, I bet you're right. The kids are pretty on point, though. 

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I was listening to James Brown earlier (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5BL4RNFr58 ) and like most people, when I think of James Brown, I think of our very own Countess Luann. Remember in season 3 or 4 when she was with her cheesy producer in the recording studio and she started bopping her head to the side, snapping her fingers, and then was all "I'm feelin' James Brown...Ho!" lol That was a classic RHONY moment for me. Too bad he wasn't feelin' her.

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Yes.  IIRC, the scene had the other ladies having a fabulous time in the fabulous (?) Hamptons and then cut to Silex and kids in the inflatable pool in their Brooklyn backyard.

 

However, in the episode, I don't believe Alex was looking so lovely - I remember frizzy hair, blotchy skin and a sweaty Simon.  That's why I love this photo.  I think this is how Simon and Alex imagined they looked.

 

I think what was even better about that cut was I seem to recall a TH (or maybe it was even Simon and Alex conversing with each other) about how much better it was for them to be in the kiddie pool than out in Hamptons. Or maybe I'm conflating it with their dismissal of St. Barth's saying that they purposely chose not to vacation their in January like everyone else and instead preferred doing it in the off season. 

 

In any case, it was like this great jump cut/juxtaposition that showed them to be pretentious about the fact that they couldn't hang with the more "fabulous" and wealthy.

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Every once in a while, it dawns on me anew that Alex and Simon named their kids Francois and Johan. I just can't.

 

 

If I remember correctly, Johan was the name of Simon's father, or grandfather, so it's a family name. I get that. "Francois" on an American child, though…unless either or both parents are French, it just sounds pretentious, much like Alex and Simon's insistence that their kids learn the language. (Why? Just so their ladder-climbing parents can tell their friends "our kids speak French.")

 

I can see a day coming where Francois asks, "Can't you just call me Frank?" and his parents refusing, because they see "Frank" as pedestrian.

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If I remember correctly, Johan was the name of Simon's father, or grandfather, so it's a family name. I get that. "Francois" on an American child, though…unless either or both parents are French, it just sounds pretentious, much like Alex and Simon's insistence that their kids learn the language. (Why? Just so their ladder-climbing parents can tell their friends "our kids speak French.")

 

I can see a day coming where Francois asks, "Can't you just call me Frank?" and his parents refusing, because they see "Frank" as pedestrian.

In one of the later episodes of season 4, there is a scene in which Alex is in her backyard with Simon, the kids and two men, and they are discussing the reason why Alex doesn't want to be in Luann's music video. She says she has an issue with the use of the word class and how pretentious Luann is. She also goes on to say that it bothers her when people act like such wannabes. (I know, that's funny enough, but that's not the best part.) After she says that, you hear one of the boys say, "Really?" And as if to echo the collective disbelief from the audience and Francois, the producers felt the need to have the "Really?" subtitled so no one would miss it.

Edited by comatoast
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My other favorite part of that exchange was Alex explaining the only reason why her family lived in Kansas was because her father owned oil fields. With Simon bragging about how she never tells people that it was oil fields.

 

I wonder how they feel mortgaging their home to the max for renovations only to lose their real jobs and the Housewives gig paycheck.

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I can see a day coming where Francois asks, "Can't you just call me Frank?" and his parents refusing, because they see "Frank" as pedestrian.

He might have a chance if he asks in french...

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My other favorite part of that exchange was Alex explaining the only reason why her family lived in Kansas was because her father owned oil fields. With Simon bragging about how she never tells people that it was oil fields.

Oh, yeah! And don't forget the three homes!

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In one of the later episodes of season 4, there is a scene in which Alex is in her backyard with Simon, the kids and two men, and they are discussing the reason why Alex doesn't want to be in Luann's music video. She says she has an issue with the use of the word class and how pretentious Luann is. She also goes on to say that it bothers her when people act like such wannabes. (I know, that's funny enough, but that's not the best part.) After she says that, you hear one of the boys say, "Really?" And as if to echo the collective disbelief from the audience and Francois, the producers felt the need to have the "Really?" subtitled so no one would miss it.

 

 

Isn't that the same scene where Simon makes some hacky awful "Countess? Maybe if you take out the "o" joke?" (I'm a comedian, so being hacky is a great offense). What perturbed me most is that it didn't even seem like an off-the-cuff "I'm-gonna-get-in-trouble-for-that-later" kind of statement that sometimes happen on reality shows, but -- like the rest of the scene -- it seemed rehearsed and pre-planned. LuAnn must have REALLY hurt Alex's feelings in Morocco.

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In one of the later episodes of season 4, there is a scene in which Alex is in her backyard with Simon, the kids and two men, and they are discussing the reason why Alex doesn't want to be in Luann's music video. She says she has an issue with the use of the word class and how pretentious Luann is. She also goes on to say that it bothers her when people act like such wannabes. (I know, that's funny enough, but that's not the best part.) After she says that, you hear one of the boys say, "Really?" And as if to echo the collective disbelief from the audience and Francois, the producers felt the need to have the "Really?" subtitled so no one would miss it.

 

And ironically during season 1 when Ramona had her meltdown because Simon was in attendance at girl's night?

 

When Ramona left the table, the subject being bandied about, I believe, was....CLASS.

 

Funny Alex and Simon didn't have an issue with the word then.  

 

They're both such walking contradictions.  

 

One of my favorite episodes was the one where Bethenny goes over to their place in Brooklyn for a birthday party and it's an absolute shambles.  

 

Good times, RHONYC!!!

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I just watched the first two seasons for the first time, and it's kind of nice to watch without full knowledge of all the ancillary drama that forms around these shows as they air while knowing what comes next for the friendships and characters (side note: season 1 of NJ is awesome knowing that a few years from that point they'd all hate each other). 

 

I too appreciated the documentary-style of the first season (well, more like a documentary, anyway).   That's when I came to the realization that the HW franchises have started to suffer because Bravo is too cheap to send multiple camera crews around the way they once did.  To film one HW in St. Baarth's, one in NY, and one in the Hamptons had to be harder/more expensive than what they do now (contrived event so they're always at the same location).  But man was it a better show when the relationships didn't feel so continuously forced.  

 

I loved the transition into season 2, once they were all famous, because it was interesting to watch the personality shifts.  And the sheer amount of products/books they suddenly had.  It's making me watch Shannon on the OC HW's in a different way actually, because she reminds me of the season 1 NY wives (a bit oblivious to things), and I'm curious how she'll be when she becomes self-aware like they did.  It's not the same as season 1, of course, but is interesting in a different way.

 

I couldn't get past the season 3 premiere because it felt like a definite shift into forced hanging out, and Jill/LuAnn were a little...weird.  But if it's the best maybe I'll dive back in.  I've seen parts of it before, just not the whole run.

 

And watching it back...I didn't think Alex/Simon were all that bad.  Pretentious as hell and a little creepy, sure.  But I'd take them over some of the ones who served as replacements.  

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Isn't that the same scene where Simon makes some hacky awful "Countess? Maybe if you take out the "o" joke?" (I'm a comedian, so being hacky is a great offense). What perturbed me most is that it didn't even seem like an off-the-cuff "I'm-gonna-get-in-trouble-for-that-later" kind of statement that sometimes happen on reality shows, but -- like the rest of the scene -- it seemed rehearsed and pre-planned. LuAnn must have REALLY hurt Alex's feelings in Morocco.

Yep, that's the scene. And I think it was in the reunion, when Alex was questioned about it, she continued like if it wasn't a big deal compared to the word class.

 

And ironically during season 1 when Ramona had her meltdown because Simon was in attendance at girl's night?

 

When Ramona left the table, the subject being bandied about, I believe, was....CLASS.

 

One of my favorite episodes was the one where Bethenny goes over to their place in Brooklyn for a birthday party and it's an absolute shambles.  

 

Good times, RHONYC!!!

It's the same episode!! That was probably my all-time favorite episode. It was just so jam-packed with housewives goodness!

Before the birthday party scene, Jill was at her sister's house in Connecticut, and they cut from an exterior shot of that big old house to the House of Shambles. Ouch!

 

And, of course, Girl's Night with Ramona being…well, Ramona and chiming in on what class is. lol We also saw her dancing at a magazine party in the episode.  That, to me, is always a gift wrapped in toilet paper and duct tape. It was also the episode in which Alex and Simon (wearing the gold bow tie with his tux) had to fight off the paps at The Met. Except they didn't. But hey, they did make eye contact with a few people!

 

There were scenes in Ramona's and Jill's apartments (loved the views from that dining room window), a sort of fancy dinner party, a magazine party, opening night at The Met, Bethenny's "Oh, no, she di'int" dated one-liners, and a limo ride in bump-and-go traffic...just some of the things that made RHONYC my favorite.

 

Limo rides…that reminds me, this is also the "It's Mrs. DeLesseps" episode (when Bethenny introduced Luann to the driver).

 

Ah, good times, indeed!

Edited by comatoast
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I couldn't get past the season 3 premiere because it felt like a definite shift into forced hanging out, and Jill/LuAnn were a little...weird.  But if it's the best maybe I'll dive back in.  I've seen parts of it before, just not the whole run.

There was more drama in season 3 with Bethenny, her friendship with Jill, and Kelly's breakdown/breakthrough/jellybean overdose.

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For as much money as those two nitwits spent on clothes ("More than five figures, but not quite six..."--Simon), they sure dress like shit. Alex's mustard yellow, short-sleeved pantsuit at the season finale dinner was horrid. Even worse than Ramona's hot pink sequined Barbie gown.

Are you referring to the yellow, black striped gown that had the illusion of sun shining from her crotch? That was epic.

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There was more drama in season 3 with Bethenny, her friendship with Jill, and Kelly's breakdown/breakthrough/jellybean overdose.

Thanks!  I remember pieces of that- I saw Scary Island- but it's jarring when you binge-watch season 1 and 2 and then get to 3.  Or at least it was for me, because that premiere with Luann upset at Ramona (or was it Jill? or both?) was so fake.  As was the two of them even going to hang out with Ramona.  Season 1 would have just had them on their own, without the on-camera airing of grievances.  

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Are you referring to the yellow, black striped gown that had the illusion of sun shining from her crotch? That was epic.

No, but that was terrible too. It was an ill-fitted yellow pantsuit that she wore to the S1 finale holiday dinner. The same dinner where Francois or Johannes climbed all over Jason #1 and tore apart his hamburger while he was eating it.

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Where are you guys watching the early seasons?

...Hulu I believe?

 

ETA:

They have most of the franchise(s) minus DC...

Edited by CyberJawa1986
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OK - I just finished S3.  Some thoughts:

 

Sonja - She looked GREAT! She was a normal, articulate, functioning human being.  No weirdness, no yapping about all her "deals" and businesses.  No interns.  Why can't we have this Sonja now?!??!!

 

Bethenny - Happy this was her last season.  She's exhausting. 

 

Jill - So I actually liked Jill in S1 & S2, but not sure what happened in S3.  She was icky.  I understand that she fabricated the fight w/Bethenny for a storyline, right?  I think the Jill highlight for me was her skating party.  God, what an embarrassment.  Oh, no - wait.  Her walking into the house in St. Barth's to DEAD SILENCE was worse. Jeebus that was awkward. I actually felt a smidge sorry for her.

 

Alex - Gah.  I do NOT like Alex.  Her whole hyperventilating thing when Jill showed up was ridic. Dramatic, much? Alex highlight:  her "sexy" walk while Kelly was taking her picture on the beach.   Nothing sexy about Alex.

 

Lu - I like Lu and always have.  Her recording session was a hot mess, though.  Sweet to see her introduce Jacques to the ladies at her release party.  She seemed genuinely happy.  RIP Lu & Jacques. 

 

Krazy Kelly - Yikes.  I knew about Scary Island and had seen some of it before, but wow.  Truthfully, I sort of get where she was coming from at first.  She was probably forced on the trip (despite what Andy claims) and really didn't like hearing them trash talk the other ladies (esp. her buddy Jill) and was uncomfortable.  That I get.  I don't know WTF that outburst at dinner was though.  That was NUTS. Totally off the hook.  Mental breakdown, indeed.

 

The Moaner - Oh, Ramona, Ramona , Ramona.  Turtle Time.  God, I could watch her (try to) dance for hours.  Girl has no rhythm.  I briefly debated taking a shot everytime Ramona said renewal.  "My hair cut is a renewal! TruREnewal! Renewing our vows!"   BTW--Renewing your vows on your 17th anniversary is the kiss of death.  RIP Moaner & Mario.   P.S.  Avery and her eyerolls still ROCK!

Edited by beaker73
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I watched most of season 1, and agree. I like the show so much better. I ti also interesting watching it knowing what is going to happen. I agree with the poster upthread, about Jill getting upset about not being invited to a cooking party. I didn't realize anytime you want to get to know a person, you have to invite the person who introduced you every time. Was Jill the Countesses keeper? I think she just liked being able to count the Countess as her friend for social status. She also seemed very perturbed when LuAnn wanted to get to know Alex better over their shared love of French and Italian. 

 

Alex and Simon are still funny, but their drama was so innocent back then. I much prefer it to some of the other forced drama.

 

I too like how much more organic the show seemed. I liked seeing the housewives just doing their thing and interacting with their other friends. But some parts were a little sad. First of all, I forgot how pretty and young Ramona looked in the first season. It was nice seeing her goofing off with her friends, with Avery rolling her eyes. But you could see Mario's roving eye back then, like Ramona seeing him talking to a young girl, confronting them, and then getting into the argument about the missing wedding ring. 

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I just finished watching the first 3 episodes. I really liked it.

 

I have to say that Bethany is so annoying. She just doesn't shut up. I think she is very biting even though she tries to disguise it as "humor." I am not really a Kelly fan, but I though Beth was just horrible to her from the get go.

 

Ramona amuses me. I love her daughter, but her husband makes me itch. There is something very snaky about him.

 

Jill really does not bother me. She does have to be involved in everything and that is tiring.

 

Love Luann! Alex is a silly woman and her husband is too. I can't decide on Sonja yet.

 

 

 

 

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I just finished watching the first 3 episodes. I really liked it.

 

I have to say that Bethany is so annoying. She just doesn't shut up. I think she is very biting even though she tries to disguise it as "humor." I am not really a Kelly fan, but I though Beth was just horrible to her from the get go.

 

Ramona amuses me. I love her daughter, but her husband makes me itch. There is something very snaky about him.

 

Jill really does not bother me. She does have to be involved in everything and that is tiring.

 

Love Luann! Alex is a silly woman and her husband is too. I can't decide on Sonja yet.

I agreed with everything you said, especially the Beth vs. Kelly part.  I think we are a minority on that opinion.  But I didn't love Luann until last season.  And love is a strong word. She seems less ass-y.

 

In prior seasons I thought acted very entitled and needed to be taken down a peg or two.  I don't know if it was her divorce, editing or if she's acting, but it appears that she's been humbled.  Seems the Countess does drink beer out of a bottle. Still giving her a side eye because she appears to be friends IRL with Carole Radziwill, though.

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Yeah, I can't really remember Kelly's first episodes on the show right now but I do know that she's still easily in my top five worst housewives ever and that's...that's quite a feat. The I'm up here/you're down here, the cartwheel/gummi bear speech, zip it--I basically wanted this woman to fall overboard or maybe a pie in the face--something to take her down a peg or two. At the time of the season 3 (?) reunion I thought she was horrible and was desperately hoping that she'd be fired for all of her bullshit. The "close friendship" with Jill was basically the cherry on top of a shit sundae. 

 

As far as NY housewives Kelly was my least favorite. She and Jill are basically tied but at least Jill made me laugh with her ridiculousness. Kelly wasn't even funny. She was boring, stupid, and overall just terribly frustrating.

 

Jill though, her WWHL interview is *still* some of the funniest shit I've ever seen come out of Bravoland. Seriously, stuff like "It felt like a death; it felt like my funeral..." I bet it did, Jill. I bet it did.

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God yes. 

 

Cindy, we already knew ye.  And like you said, at least Jill had her moments of hilarity, both intentional and unintentional. Kelly was so humorless and inarticulate. Beyond that, she always had this stench of superiority to me that surpassed even Jill and Luann. I totally thought Bethenny called it when she described Kelly as the type of person who would only bother acknowledging someone if they served a purpose to her. 

 

As awkward as Alex was, I always felt bad for her (and thus am so glad she's off the show) when it was patently clear the other women viewed her as beneath them and only deigned to recognize her presence.

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Kelly, disgust at first sight. You had me at hello. I remember her first sceen because she was going on about her fab life reporting on parties in the Hamptons and said something about how if she comes to your party, but only stays for 5 minutes you should be honored she showed up at all because she gets so many invites...and I had to give her a Bye Felicia.

I liked Alex most of the time. I think Alex's biggest flaw was that she just wasn't a girlfriend group type of person. She was always so visibly miserable during the group activities, but relaxed and was a lot more enjoyable when she was interacting with the other Housewives one on one. Her and Bethanny were actually pretty cute trying to steal moments together during scary island. I think Alex's idea of a perfect Girls Night is 1 or 2 close friends in a swanky wine bar. Polar opposite of Kelly who I think actually enjoys big parties where she can sort of flit from one person to another.

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OK, I am now in the middle of season 4, and I am falling out of love with Luann. I understand she wants to project good manners, but to tell you the truth, her manners are not impeccable. If they were she would not point out the bad manners of others so publicly. <In my Luann voice>...one would not acknowledge ill-mannered guests.

 

Ramona is exhausting, Sonja is ridiculous, Alex is still a silly woman. I have no clue why Cindy is on the show. Does she last? Kelly is too up and down for me.

 

Jill, well, she still amuses me and I don't know why.

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