This Guy Again
Claudia lapses into lameness as she cozies up to Porsha's sloppy seconds.
Home Again, Home Again
"I'd rather be with Gregg any day!" NeNe lies as she returns to Atlanta after the Puerto Rican fiasco. On their ride home, she carefully curates an account of the trip for her doddering husband. She complains about the girls' negative energy and can't for the life of her figure out why tempers went from 0 to 100.
Elsewhere, Cynthia gathers around her kitchen island with Peter and her sister Val, regaling them with tons of NeNe-related schadenfreude. The embarrassing friendship contract between the former besties is brought up for the umpteenth time, with Cynthia officially terminating it. This prompts Val to go in search of the actual paper document. Once found, Cynthia gleefully burns it in the sink. If anything else worthy of note happens, it's overshadowed by Cynthia's (Coyote) ugly hat…the first of many she'll sport throughout the episode. What's going on under there? Should we be worried?
Kandi and Todd pay a visit to the OB-GYN they clearly sourced from a bus ad. In an effort to assess the couple's reproductive odds, this "professional" doctor instructs Todd to fill a specimen cup "mandingo-style" inside her office's "Masturbatorium." She gives him a quick tour of the facilities, pointing out that there's plenty of hand sanitizer and Lysol. But what this female version of Dr. Nick should be offering up is a framed diploma from a reputable medical school, because I'm not convinced.
More Like Ward-drab, Amirite?
Cynthia's perusing the loafers and sparkly Uggs she keeps lined up on her Ikea Kallax shelves. She wants to find just the right pair of shoes to wear to the opening of Peter's newest soon-to-be-defunct bar. This one's in Charlotte, NC and she's planning a road trip with a few of the girls to celebrate. To help her decide between two different dresses, Cynthia enlists the aid of two assistants, both of whom conveniently happen to be sporting their Bailey Agency T-shirts. It then takes those same two befuddled adult males to insert two non-couture, nondescript dresses into a garment bag. Surely, this is not what their parents envisioned for their children's futures.
Love Don't Live Here Anymore
Phaedra checks in with Derek J. about the hair-weave theft case she's handling on his behalf. "This is the most ridiculous case I have ever heard of!" she laughs. This sounds far from convincing coming from a woman who's boasted a robust male stripper clientele. In the midst of her lightweight lawyering, her mom walks in to discuss Phaedra's home life. Apollo finally has a prison date set; now Phaedra has to figure out how to break it to her boys. Pushing all our buttons, the editors splice this scene with one of Apollo taking their little cherubs out for fro-yo. Dammit if this isn't the most adorable form of manipulation. Ayden loves his daddy almost as much as he does caramel. In his little cartoon mind, he envisions his dad going to a forever time-out for doing something bad, and vows to come and visit him forever and ever. The adults who put these kids in this situation -- on this show, even -- could use a good flogging.
Cruel & Unusual Parenting
Kids these days. All they want to do is kick it with their (step-)mom and help her chart her ovulation schedule on a dry-erase calendar. Wait. No? Oh, then somebody should tell Kandi. She drags Riley and Todd's daughter Kayla into a discussion about their baby-making plans. "Aren't you a little old?" the ever-precocious mini-Mama Joyce wonders. The conversation turns to why the tween and teen don't get along better, and a cynical mind might wonder why Kandi and Todd don't focus more energy on making a family out of the kids they already have.
Claudia issues some serious subtle side-eye in Kenya's direction throughout their road trip with Cynthia. Phaedra backs out last-minute because of a hastily concocted dental appointment/bible study combo, thus leaving more room for Kenya to sprawl out in the backseat and lose her entire mind. She brays, cackles, moons other drivers, demands a Chick-Fil-A pitstop and pops out of the sunroof to scream along to her gimmick song about twirling. A stern "I will turn this car around!" is definitely in order, and chauffeur Claudia would've grown in my eyes had she dealt one.
Is There A Shortage Of Southern Men?
The traveling trio arrive in Charlotte late, in keeping with Atlanta Housewives canon. At the hotel, Cynthia and Kenya make a fuss about sprucing Claudia up so she can meet a man once they arrive at the bar. Again, Claudia is the only one among them with even a modicum of good taste. Satisfied with their choice of a trashtastic mini-dress with a "boobs on the glass" mesh feature, they teeter over to the grand opening.
So…Peter's new spot is a sports bar, but in name only. There are one or two flat screen TVs -- all switched off -- and a couple of platters of sports bar-ish food (wings, poppers, sliders). The only thing resembling a sports tie-in is Peter's business partner, Kordell, aka Porsha's ex-Househusband. He and Peter drunkenly, offensively and ceaselessly ogle Claudia and her v. unfortunate V-neck, as everyone marvels over the fact that Kordell and Claudia had actually met years back. Kenya tactlessly nudges the two together like a teen at a mall outing, and they reacquaint themselves as though they have a choice. Long before they pose for their obligatory selfie snap, it's abundantly clear that this is all just future fight fuel with which to douse Claudia and Porsha.
This just feels like a throw-away episode meant to give us a breather between big fights. The sad truth of the matter is that there's nothing worth watching when nobody's being cussed out or dragged out. This show could never be about these women setting aside their petty differences and forming a village to help raise those poor little boys. We're never going to see the women grappling with weighty current events, lending their time to non-fictitious 501(c)(3) charities, or even becoming real housewives. Understanding this, my approach is just like, "Fight, or GTFOH."