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Real Housewives

RHONY S9/Ep 8 Recap - Return of the Berzerkshires

Glenn Rowley

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This week on The Real Housewives of New York City, the women head to the Berkshires once again to celebrate Dorinda's birthday. However, an argument between Tinsley and Sonja threatens the fun before the ladies stage an intervention for Luann about her pending nuptials to Tom. Read on to find out if the third year in the Berkshires will be the charm...

The annual cast getaway to the Berkshires is upon us, but first we get a scene meant to prep viewers for Bethenny Frankel's new real estate series with Fredrik Eklund of Million Dollar Listing New York, tentatively titled Keeping It Real Estate. Clever, huh? After working together to sell her old Tribeca apartment, B is going into the real estate business with the MDLNY agent and selling her current place in Soho. The two alpha personalities immediately begin bickering over decor and selling points, and the look on Bethenny's face when Fredrik uses the word "clutter" to describe her home is absolutely priceless. Eventually, the new partners settle on listing the property for $5.25 million and it looks like we'll be getting much more of this when the new series premieres sometime later this year on Bravo. 

Over in the West Village, Ramona Singer drops for an impromptu visit with perpetual cat lady Carole Radziwill to spill some serious tea on the relationship between Luann de Lesseps and Tom D'Agostino. Despite promising to drop the Nancy Drew act, Ramona has continued to quietly do recon on Tom and has the texts to prove that Luann's fiancé allegedly forced himself onto a former girlfriend and tried to "stick his tongue" down her throat just one week earlier. This revelation coupled with the bombshell that dropped into Carole's lap last week (via a good friend) that Luann is having serious doubts about going through with the wedding and now everyone is once again concerned that all is not as it appears in the relationship between the Countess and her "dirty dog" of a fiancé. Whether it's a cry for help or something else, the ladies are left with a serious conundrum: do they say something to Luann and risk a redux of last season's explosive cheating drama or not say anything and avoid a confrontation? Which choice falls under the category of being a good friend?

It's time for the 'Wives to head to Blue Stone Manor for the yearly celebration of Dorinda Medley's birthday. Despite the insanity of the last two years the women have gone to the Berkshires, Dorinda has decked the halls of her manor home and remains confident that she can make it nice - and yes, even Sonja Morgan scored an invite this year. The first full day is Dorinda's birthday and, despite a cake catastrophe that would've sent Heather Dubrow into a blind rage in the OC, the weekend starts off surprisingly...pleasant. However, if we've learned anything over the last three seasons, it's that history has set a precedent for drama in the Berkshires so all of the women are wary of an impending blowup. It's kind of like hosting your birthday party on top of a giant powder keg covered in Christmas decorations... 

Luann, en route from Palm Beach, is the only 'Wife who hasn't arrived yet. So naturally, the topic of conversation turns to the rumors and stories swirling around Manhattan about Tom's handsy, philandering ways. In addition to the damning information held by Ramona and Carole, Bethenny's heard a separate piece of gossip that Lu's husband-to-be is carrying on an affair with another woman behind her back. B wonders aloud whether she and the other 'Wives can get Luann out of this seemingly doomed union, but that'll be much easier said than done. With everything going on off-camera with her toxic ex, Bethenny feels a certain responsibility to go to Luann once again and try to keep her from making a similar mistake - particularly since so many stories are coming out of the woodwork. However, rather than shouldering the brunt of the task, Bethenny decides all the damaging news would be better received with Dorinda running point in a tag-team effort with all the other women.

Gathering in front of a cozy fire in the great room, the 'Wives begin to compare their notes on Tom as they prep for Luann's arrival and one by one lay all the information in Dorinda's reluctant hands. Talk about a great birthday present...Cut to the Countess pulling up in the driveway and Dorinda is now obligated to share all this information with her so that Luann can, in her words, "either leave, stay or shoot someone." 

Luann arrives as the party move into the dining room for some Christmas cookie decorating and the women make some rather stunted, uncomfortable small talk about, ya know, how the wedding planning is going now that the big day is just two weeks away. Then suddenly, seemingly out of left field, the festering roommate drama between Sonja and Tinsley takes center stage. The former socialite (accurately) accuses Lady Morgan of complaining about her behind her back and somehow the argument devolves into a screaming match over the time Tinsley asked Sonja's assistant to open the door and receive a delivery of hats for her. Apparently this display of poor etiquette is grounds to start WWIII because Sonja feels Tinsley and her privileged, Southern upbringing are beginning to take advantage of her kindness. The second Sonja stays the words "chain of command" in her confessional, I'm checked out of this ridiculous fight, but all I know is that next time Tinsley will be sure to GET HER OWN GODDAMN HATS! PERIOD!

Bringing it back to the real issue at hand, Dorinda pulls Luann aside for a private chat. Going straight to the point, Dorinda shares the group's collective concern over Tom. Revealing the text messages, hearsay and rumors swirling behind her back, Dorinda asks point blank whether Luann trusts Tom and really, in her heart of hearts, wants to go through with the marriage. Unsurprisingly, Lu remains deliberately unaffected by all the gossip, repeating the party line that she trusts Tom completely, knows that this is the right choice and all the women saying otherwise are just "jealous b*tches." Regardless of any concern, evidence or amount of scandal thrown in front of her, Luann is marching down the aisle come hell or high water. Got it ladies?

What did you think of this week's RHONY? Did the 'Wives handle their concern about Tom the correct way this time? Is Luann choosing to be willfully blind to red flags? Does Sonja and Tinsley's arguing make any sense? Tell me in the comments below!