Not since Brandi confronted Scheana about her affair with Eddie Cibrian in Vanderpump Rules' iconic backdoor pilot has the Bravo-verse felt so connected as it did this week, Housewives faithful. But this time, it wasn't because of C-list infidelity; no, it's because we relived the anticlimax of Election Day 2020 from coast to coast as The Real Housewives of New York City and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills both had Steve Kornacki viewing parties that ended in tension and disappointment. But first, the Big Apple 'wives concluded their Hamptons trip with a 1970s beauty pageant then headed back to the city for some boxing before hitting the polls. Meanwhile, our California girls spent most of the episode reeling from Erika's divorce bombshell before finally seeing her again at a French-themed brunch where everyone accidentally dressed alike. Here are the best, worst, and wildest moments from this week in 'wives!
HIGH POINT: Harry Hamlin: Quarantine Hero, RHOBH
"To this day, I don't know what Harry Hamlin sees in me," Lisa admits of her unimpeachable Real Househusband, referred to as always by his full name to provide our regular reminder that she, Lisa Rinna, snagged herself a Clash of the Titans icon. This week we were treated to an extraordinary sequence of Lisa's own personal Perseus showing off the multiple vegetable gardens he built, pool/reservoir he installed, and elaborate fire drill routine he perfected in quarantine, during which the rest of us just sat around bingeing The Real Housewives and allowing our general functionality to slowly deteriorate. Harry Hamlin has been growing entire pumpkins, tiny potatoes, haricots verts. Lisa asks if he puts poop in the compost. "No," he replies. The whole thing might seem a little extreme, but do you think Lisa has held onto Harry Hamlin — Harry Hamlin! — for all these years without knowing how to handle him? "Let him have his garden," she says in a confessional. "Let him have his tacky-ass pool."
LOW POINT: Loaded handbags, RHONY
It was great to see Eboni get fired up to vote for her soror Kamala Harris to become our country's first Madam Vice President — but the Election Day thrills pretty much end there. That night, her results-viewing party is off from the start, when Leah brings her terror of a tiny dog, Angel, and Luann shows up wearing a JFK mask, which I don't think is supposed to feel as spooky as it does. Ramona doesn't come at all but is a strong presence regardless: Sonja surpasses her Eboni-approved limit of one and a half glasses of White Zinfandel and starts ranting about how Ramona posted pictures of Eboni and "wears causes as a handbag," a metaphor she does not drop throughout the conversation. "You don't like performative allyship?" Eboni translates. "Are y'all telling me that Ramona is posting pictures, rapid-fire, of Black women in her life to counter a narrative that she is racist?" This is confirmed by everyone and prompts Sonja to continue screaming about purses. My heart goes out to Eboni's friend, who never could have suspected this is what she was signing up for. And as if the whole scene weren't bad enough, it would be another three days before Pennsylvania sealed the deal for Biden.
WILDEST MOMENT: Dejeuner à la Parisienne, RHOBH
Something is very wrong at Sutton's Paris-themed luncheon — or perhaps more accurately, everything is a little bit wrong. It's Kyle's house, but Sutton's hosting. The table looks oddly nuptial. There's jewelry for sale? But get rid of the price tags. Crystal's Hermès bag is so perfect Kyle is literally hypnotized by it. Everyone matches: Dorit and Garcelle both wear Louis Vuitton logo print; Kyle and Lisa wear the exact same puffy-sleeved polka-dot tie-back dress. (Kathy Hilton simply wears a pastel blazer and says, rich and regal as can be, "I have to tell you, in the daytime in Paris, this is the way I dress.") It's all very disorienting, but nothing more so than the anxiety hanging in the air over the future ex-Mrs. Girardi's imminent arrival, teased in the episode's opening moments, wherein our friends the Bravo editors actually included a shocking glance directly at the camera from Erika as she rode to the event. Finally, she arrives, walks up the path to the awkwardly autumnal entryway, and enters dramatically, posing like a soap opera villain as she slams the door shut. What French hell is this!
👑 QUEEN OF THE WEEK 👑 Leah, RHONY, even though it was rigged
Bravo Leah McSweeney on 'The Real Housewives of New York City'
MOST SHOCKING CAMEO(S): ABC News' documentary The Housewife and the Hustler focused primarily on Tom Girardi's alleged misdeeds, which came across as monstrous. There was not much insight to be gleaned about Erika's own awareness of or involvement in these alleged scandals, however; its biggest Bravo-adjacent surprise had to be that RHONJ's Danielle Staub and RHOBH's Dana Wilkey were two of the doc's most prominently featured talking heads. "She was very good casting," Danielle said of Erika joining RHOBH. "She was probably the best since me."
TODAY IN TECH: Ramona uses voice-to-text to send imprudent condolences on RHONY, until Luann intervenes.
THAT'S FASHION: "All I know is they're ugly, but everybody is wearing them, so I have to wear them too" — Kyle re: mom jeans, RHOBH.
MYSTERY OF THE WEEK: Why was the chalkboard in Martin's boxing gym filled with a rudimentary breakdown of Luann and Sonja's marital histories? (RHONY)