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Spinoffs & Other Shows

Recaps, opinion pieces and analysis of Bravo TV shows including Don't Be Tardy, Manzo'd With Children, Ladies of London, Tour Group, Shahs of Sunset and Southern Charm.

Manzo'd With Children Ssn 3/Ep 5 - Newlywed Games

Glenn Rowley


This week on Manzo'd With Children, it's a twist on the newlyweds game when Lauren and Vito switch jobs for the day. Plus, Albie works to grow his consulting business and Caroline comes up with her next goal to accomplish. Read on for a full recap of the hijinks and hard work...


Albie Manzo's in the consulting business, people. In order to get his new company up and running, the eldest Manzo child is consulting for a number of different start-ups specializing in everything from skincare and pet supplies to poultry farming. The catch, though, is that Albie doesn't get paid as a consultant until these start-ups are successful, so it's crunch time to sign as many clients as possible. One of those clients looks to be Albie's own personal trainer, whose gym, Core Rhythm Fitness, is responsible for Al getting - according to virtually everyone in his family - "too skinny."


Back at the Manzo house, Lauren Manzo and Vito Scalia are having the classic newlywed debate over whose job is more difficult. Vito's certain that his job at his parents' deli is more labor-intensive than Lauren making girls feel pretty all day at Cafface, but his wife shoots back that it's much harder than making sandwiches. The bickering moves upstairs to the kitchen, where matriarch Caroline Manzo seizes the chance to intervene. If they both think they have it so hard, why don't Lauren and Vito switch jobs for a day? This idea is pure genius on Caroline's part; the newlyweds have been bickering so much this season, it'll them both some good to walk in the other's shoes for a while. Challenge accepted and the battle of the newlyweds is officially on.


While Chris Manzo has a meeting with his publicist about the success of Oliver Brightside (with a cameo by #RHONJ newbie Dolores Catania's hunky son Frankie!), Caroline pays a visit to Albie's Hoboken bachelor pad to talk business. Since the success of the Sugarloaf craft festival, Caroline isn't sure what direction she should take her new soap-making business in, and turns to her oldest son for advice. Albie suggests turning Caroline's soaps into a legitimate brand and before we know it, mother and son are going into business together! 


Later, Caroline and her husband Albert get waterfront seats at Chart House Restaurant for a date night, and it turns out the Manzo matriarch has more than soap her mind. Her conversation with Albie has got her worried about where his mind is at with turning 30 and manages to prod Albert into promising to have a little father-son chat with his namesake. Caroline's also started thinking about the next step in her personal evolution, and come to the conclusion that her real dream is to host a talk show somewhere. Could Caroline be the next Bethenny? Or the Italian Oprah? Based on her past success as a radio host, it seems to be a good bet that Caroline would be a hit as a no-nonsense talk show host.


The day of Lauren and Vito's job switch arrives and it becomes quickly apparent who the winner of the challenge will be. While Vito bumbles through shampooing and blowing out a client's hair, Lauren reveals an innate knack for making sausages and creating sandwich art. She's so good, in fact, that her in-laws Vito Sr. and Denise are about ready to kick Vito to the curb so she can work at the deli full-time. The most hilarious moment of the day, however, comes when Caroline volunteers to give herself up to the mercy of Vito's rudimentary makeup skills. By the end of the appointment, the poor woman looks like a veritable clown and it's obvious Vito needs to leave Cafface to the professionals...


True to his word, Albert takes his oldest son for an afternoon at the batting cages. During an innocent game of catch, he sneaks in a fatherly heart-to-heart where Albie reveals that growing up, it felt like the Manzo patriarch was never around because of work. In fact, a young Albie even joked that his dad could leave him at a far-off Little League tournament and never actually come back for him. Obviously this upsets Albert to hear, but he points out that he did what it took to take care of his family. After all, they weren't always signing contracts with Bravo and being followed around by camera crews for our amusement. Albie admits that he puts pressure on himself and his success because he never wanted to be the guy who rested on other people's accomplishments, even his own father's. Giving the validation his son so clearly yearns for, Albert claims Albie is on the right track and tearfully tells him he's proud with baseball glove in hand.


After a long day of wreaking havoc at his wife's salon, Vito returns home to make dinner for a triumphant Lauren, who's basking in the glow of basically being better at her husband's job than he is. Vito's attempt at making a poor man's fajitas is yet another failure in his day, but both he and Lauren admit to an increased appreciation for what the other does and who they married. But before the moment can turn any sappier, they're back to bickering with each other. So I guess in the end the experiment was a win?

What did you think of this week's Manzo'd? Did Vito stand a chance against Lauren? Should Albie put so much pressure on himself? Leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!