The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Season 7: A Retrospective

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Were people doing coke in your bathroom?

 

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Mrs. Worldwide: S7 newbie Dorit Kemsley is exactly the kind of nouveau riche trainwreck I watch these shows for: dimwitted, codependent on her messy drama queen husband (the highly underrated PK, aka what you get when you mix Chemical X with the residue from the bottom of a coke baggie), and furiously misguided. I’m not that into the specifics of her feuds (#pantygate especially is a boring, pearl-clutching slog), but I appreciate her ethos of whirlwinding around, concocting drama with the seeming sole end goal of making herself look terrible: harassing Erika about her vagina, questioning Eileen’s grief about her dead parents then developing convenient amnesia when confronted on it, implying Lisa Rinna is addicted to Xanax — all with a mishmash accent of dubious origin, like Jennifer Coolidge’s Friends character took a hard shot to the temple. All in all, a great, messy first season from Dorit. I look forward to seeing what her and PK do next year. I hope they don’t clean up their acts.

Sidebar: Dorit and PK were brought into the mix by LVP and were 10,000,000% carrying out her bidding. Nothing you can say will convince me otherwise.

Second sidebar: I could have made that image of Dorit smaller. But why would I?

 

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Panty Waste of Time: A very quick gloss on #pantygate, since you’ll hear about it nine million times during the season: Erika went commando in a tight dress, PK pretended to see her vagina, Dorit bullied her for it ’til the end of time. This is one of those tedious late-era Beverly Hills stories that would be a one-episode throwaway fight on a better franchise like NYC, but turns into a season-consuming passive-aggressive nightmare because of the BH women’s infuriatingly insincere and indirect style of conflict. Me personally, I don’t see how anyone credulous could watch this play out and not take Erika’s side, but never underestimate the power of the Housewives internet hivemind to get it wrong. There’s a sizeable contingent out there who had the pitchforks out for Erika for like… caring more than she claimed to… that a strange man was ogling her vagina…? and to them I say ooookay buddy.

Ultimately, I think what this fight really comes down to is 1) Erika finds Dorit vapid and useless; 2) Dorit is intimidated by Erika; and 3) LVP was in there whipping up the waters, and this is how it all expressed itself. I could elaborate further on the subject (e.g., Dorit “gifting” Erika with panties was absolutely a passive-aggressive jab, like how is this a debate, have you people ever watched an episode of this show before) but there was no dearth of discussion of Erika’s crotch situation so I’ll afford the woman some dignity and move on to a woman with none.

 

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The Rinnassance: If you have no other reason to tune into season seven of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, you must treat yourself to the fragrant mania of Lisa Rinna. Rinna has always been a fucking lunatic, mind you, but it was tempered with restraint and fear. Rinna’s style until now had been to launch attacks on targets who couldn’t defend themselves (Kim in the middle of a relapse, Yolanda on her deathbed) and otherwise present herself as concubine to the reigning alpha (originally LVP, more recently Erika).

However, I think finally publicly defying Lisa Vanderpump liberated some piece of Rinna’s soul, because she’s now happy as a clam to whip up random, absurd, hilarious drama everywhere she goes. Whether she’s indulging in a spate of messy beta-on-beta warfare with new girl Dorit, or conscripting supporting cast members Kim Richards and Eden Sassoon into completely pointless sobriety wars, Rinna is always doing The Most. One of the best episodes of the season (and one of the best BH episodes period) comes when everyone finally loses their shit on her during a cast trip to Mexico, as she tearfully claims to have come down with the contagious amnesia that plagued season seven.

 

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Eden’s Curse: Not much to say about Eden Sassoon, a solidly middle tier Friend Of who spent her time embroiled in Rinna drama and doing halfhearted freelance work as a Vanderpump pawn. Eden was in every way that chick at the party you don’t know, who seems super cool at first, then starts getting overly touchy and won’t leave you alone to pee, then expresses some weird views about vaccinations or Palestine or something, and then it’s 4 am and the party’s over but she’s still sitting on your couch waiting for her coke order. She was messy and desperate, pre-requisites for any self-(dis)respecting Friend Of, but there have been better Edens before and there will be again.

 

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Hong Kong Krunch: In serious contention for the best BH cast trip of all-time, Hong Kong is a shit show of epic proportions. The highlights are myriad: Dorit faces a firing squad on a junk boat. Erika succumbs to an emotional fugue state and spends the entire trip in floods of weird stoic tears, indiscriminately lashing out at her worst enemies (Dorit) and best friends (Eileen?!?!?!). And Lisa Rinna comes in clutch with the moment of the season, the series, the century: a glorious, perfect, out-of-nowhere coke accusation. If that doesn’t hit you just right, work on your fucking personality.

 

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And, Lastly, The Bunny: The totem of animosity between Kim Richards and Lisa Rinna. The subject of an incredibly awkward reunion custody battle. The enduring final image of season 7. So shall it be here.

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