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Ramona Throws Some Punches Before Her Party On The Real Housewives Of New York City

This week's trip to the Hamptons doesn't quite go as planned.

Sag Harbor & The Cadillac Of Toilets

Everyone arrives in the Hamptons for Ramona's party. Well, almost everyone. Ramona's home no longer an option for her to crash at, Sonja and her disgraced former It Girl Tinsley are a day behind the others. Free of distractions, Tinsley uses the twenty-four-hour window to cover that week's room and board by shaming Sonja into getting rid of old Dior underwear and feeling guilty about not inviting Dorinda to the Mad Hatter party. Take that with a grain of salt, though: according to Bethenny Sonja's been texting her a lot of "questionable things about Luann and Dorinda."

Luann drags Dorinda through her remodel and into the bathroom to show her "the Cadillac of toilets." Caught between two worlds as she molts from the Countess back into a civilian, Luann is prouder of her toilet right now than anyone has ever been in the history of television. Pressure building to use the toilet, they go downstairs for rosé and tacos with Victoria. Here, Dorinda launches into a tirade about Sonja's sobriety using a picture of her and the stripper from Luann's bridal shower as proof. (Um, where was that scene? Oh, and fuck you very much, this season of Vanderpump Rules.) Proof of what, I'm not sure.

Birds of paradise Luann and Victoria trill in their sand mixer full of Bic lighters reverse vocal fry voices while Dorinda goes on, which doesn't make any sense when you think about it. Why wouldn't they say anything to either confirm or deny what she's saying? It was Luann's bridal shower; they were obviously there. The whole thing feels desperate and mean, so thank god we also get footage of Luann taking them out for a spin on the boat in a scene in which her vocal register drops three more octaves.

Over at Bethenny's, the B tells Carole she's too uptight and needs to calm down about the election and the party she's throwing for it. Since she's a duffelbag of knives, it makes sense that her response to this is to set up an appointment for them to get acupuncture, which they do.

Little Red

Bethenny and Carole are the first to arrive at Little Red for dinner. They're in the middle of "joking" that Luann's going to try to blow the owner when Ramona shows up and demands that they look at the pictures she took at Avery's sorority's parents' formal. While Ramona's excited that Avery's friends think of her more as a friend than a mom, she's pissed that Bethenny doesn't have anything nice to say about the pictures. Carole says Ramona and Avery look like sisters, but she probably gets that so much that it's meaningless now. Dorinda and Luann arrive, and some of the tension that's been building gets released as everyone exchanges hellos.

Dorinda and Carole talk about the election on one side of the table, while on the other Ramona reads a Facebook status she agrees with and tells Bethenny she's smart too. Truthfully, she isn't sure if she's going to Carole's party. Not if Carole and her friends are going to be all, "I worked at ABC for fifteen years! I'm an Emmy- and Peabody award-winning journalist!" every time she says something they don't agree with. But mostly, everyone's getting along. There's even talk of Bethenny going out to see Luann's new addition and attending the breakfast she's planning for Monday. They're both one-sided things from Luann, but they're there nonetheless. These pleasantries lead to Ramona misjudging the tone of the evening.

It's debatable whether Bethenny still would have reacted the way she does were it just her and Ramona one-on-one. I can see how Bethenny thinks Ramona going from browsing the entrees to casually asking if her "soft-core porno" past coming to light -- it wasn't porn, it was a feature film -- has affected her daughter yet (Bryn might be just six years old, but kids talk!) is a calculated move on her part. Especially since she follows it up by saying she feels defensive because Bethenny doesn't tell her anything anymore, like that she got two new dogs. I don't think it's that Ramona's saying it, I think it's because of whom she's saying it in front of, and how flippantly she asks rather than because it's particularly malicious.

Ramona and Luann are talking about what just happened as if Bethenny isn't a foot away. Here's where everything starts to unravel and, finally, the B gets a taste of her own medicine as last season's trip to the Berkshires is recreated at the table. Naturally, this triggers Bethenny to bring up etiquette. This being the show's ninth season, though, it no longer has much of an effect. Ramona tells Bethenny she thinks her reaction was condescending and mean, to which Bethenny responds with something condescending and mean, to which Ramona turns to Luann and tells her she can't with the witch over there. That's the last straw for Bethenny and she storms out.

We can say it's because she has too much self-respect to subject herself to that, but it's really because she's so thin-skinned. I was shocked how quickly she went from annoyed to "our friendship will never be the same" in her THs. Hey, if you can't take the heat, don't slut-shame someone in Dorinda's kitchen.

Soundproof Logic

At her friend's home in the Hamptons with Tinsley now, Sonja's back to being her regular goofball self. Still, I wish the joke wasn't that they could potentially have all the crazy sex they want there without bothering anyone because the beds don't move. More than that, I wish Sonja wasn't air-humping the mattress while Tinsley looks on with a pained expression and basically says she wished the same were true of her townhouse. Gross.

The Wolf Pack Does The Wolfer Estate

Ramona, Luann, and Dorinda meet for lunch at a vineyard. They're all in agreement that Bethenny overreacted and is sort of a hypocrite considering she's the first one to bring up someone else's stuff amidst "scandal." Dorinda reads comments Sonja made about how she wouldn't be caught dead at Luann's wedding and isn't getting along with Ramona and Dorinda right now, which is awkward since they'll all be seeing her tonight at Ramona's party.

My Not So Brilliant Friends

Bethenny and Carole hang out with Bethenny's friend Jim. She tells him how Ramona tried to "Gotcha'd" her and Bryn and says they can go to dinner now that she isn't going to her party anymore. Great, have fun.

Elsewhere, Tinsley talks about being nervous to meet Dorinda because of everything Sonja's said about her. To her credit, Sonja seems remorseful about the way things went with Dorinda, and tells Tinsley not to let her drama impact any potential new friendships.

Ramona's Party

Ramona's guests start trickling in. Yes, even Carole, who's mature enough to follow through on a prior engagement even if the person she's staying with isn't. Which is also what gives her the best out of the evening, since Bethenny will be picking her up at some point to drive back to the city. Anyway, Carole latches onto a furious Dorinda, who's abandoned the martini train to better stalk her prey. If that isn't weird or cause enough for concern, she goes on to mention how she has a three-inch folder on Sonja that was compiled by one of Richard's former associates. Um, what?

We close out as Sonja and Tinsley awkwardly hobble into the room unnoticed. I'm sure this ends well.

Verdict

We're still off to a bit of a shaky start overall, but consider this required viewing before what looks like a blowout next week. Which isn't to say the episode doesn't have merits on its own. The Little Red sequence is great and a nice foil to last season's "December: Berkshires County," since it looks like the beginning of the end of the women's deference to Bethenny.

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