You only get one chance to make a first impression.
It’s Friday, witches, and I’ve got a hankering for some rankering. Hence this, a ranking of the many Housewives who were here for a reason, but only a season. I’ve excluded franchises that only lasted a year (sorry, D.C., Auckland and Toronto) and women whose fates are undetermined, which leaves us with 29 ladies to sift through. Yes, only 29. I thought there were that many on OC alone.
I may circle back and update this list from time to time, but for now: who’s the best of the worst?
29. Andrea Moss (Melbourne)
Conservative, impossibly stuffy, existed only to be clowned by Gina at the absolute height of her belligerent narcissism. Bad news, Andrea: we checked with our focus group, and they say you suck.
28. Cindy Barshop (New York City)
A fire blanket on any scene she entered. How could someone who was plainly fucking her brother be so uninteresting?
27. Larsa Pippen (Miami)
Larsa’s Kardashian konnection might have gotten her further had this show filmed five years after it did. Instead, all we got were seven episodes of her insisting that maids were not, in fact, human beings.
26. Cristy Rice (Miami)
Like Larsa, but without the maids. Always did this supremely distracting thing with her tongue.
25. Amanda Hansen (Vancouver)
How could Jody Claman’s beta be so dour and joyless? Slap on a smile, Amanda; you’ll be at the right hand of the dark Lord when her fiery kingdom comes to pass!
24. Reiko Mackenzie (Vancouver)
There’s a real dissociative Robotrip quality to Reiko’s endless car and Dojang footage, like you’re stuck in an eternal loop of things you’ve seen before but are powerless to stop. Have a glass of water in the morning, wait out the itch, and never do it again.
23. Susie McLean (Melbourne)
Last night, I watched the scene of The Leftovers where Jill floats the Baby Jesus doll out into the lake and is about to light it up with a burning arrow, then flinches at the last second as all her teenage hoodlum friends jeer her. Susie is Jill, Lydia is the doll.
22. Kathryn Edwards (Beverly Hills)
Brought nothing to the table except an O.J. connection that went nowhere and a grim resemblance to Aviva Drescher. Did not have a prosthetic limb to hurl to redeem herself.
21. Joyce Giraud de Ohoven (Beverly Hills)
Boring on the show, but with fun extracurriculars: the charmingly bad Lost knock-off Siberia, and the gore-drenched Rica, Famosa, Latina — like Real Housewives, but in Spanish and they’re allowed to stab each other.
20. DeShawn Snow (Atlanta)
It wasn’t until a comment on this post called me out that I even noticed I forgot to include DeShawn in this list. I feel like that serves as statement enough.
19. Lizzie Rovsek (Orange County)
Induced Tamra Judge to a shoeless sprinting meltdown in Bali, which is legitimately impressive. If only I remembered anything else about her.
18. Tiffany Hendra (Dallas)
Tiffany served admirably as LeeAnne Locken’s lady-in-waiting, but was recast with the much more independently interesting D’Andra. Also, if Brandi Redmond has taught me anything: as much as I love LeeAnne and root for her success, I’d much rather have her in bed with duplicitous trash.
17. Peggy Tanous (Orange County)
Earned her passage to a second season, then bailed one episode in when she realized filming with the other women gave her horrendous anxiety. Same, girl.
16. Kimberly Bryant (Orange County)
A former entrepreneur who traded her brain for a microchip and a pair of double-Ds at her husband’s insistence, Kimberly was sort of the platonic ideal of the Coto de Caza wife that the first season sought to document. Then she skipped town, but not before stirring up some drama between Jo and Slade, a relationship that did not need a push.
15. Claudia Jordan (Atlanta)
Claudia was only alright, but God bless her for assigning herself the role of NeNe Leakes’s chief tormentor. That woman should have a gnat buzzing around her head everywhere she goes.
14. Ana Quincoces (Miami)
Her middling performance during the season was buoyed by her savage reunion free-for-all on Lea Black that even I, a Lea fan, had to sit back and admire. “ON MY BACK?!?!?!?!?!” still echoes through my head at random points in the day.
13. Quinn Fry (Orange County)
One of the OC’s strangest anomalies, Quinn popped into our lives for five episodes in a shroud of regressive mid-oughts “cougar” branding and a bad blonde wig. She was so clearly miscast in her own life, though, that it reached the point of comedy. Plus she had a front row seat for Tamra’s wine toss, and I couldn’t even get tickets to that on Craigslist.
12. Jules Wainstein (New York City)
The best Housewives have a craziness that points outwards. Jules’s insanity points inwards which means, as nuts as she is (and make no mistake, she is nuts), her worst enemy is herself. Could really go for a fork calzone right now, though, not gonna lie.
11. Amber Marchese (New Jersey)
Amber is dampened by her awful husband, Jim the slimy lawyer, which is a shame because she truly is the best kind of worst. The two of them together, though, wow. Think the Kettlemans, the Schwartzes, or any other insufferable Richie Rich couple from the Breaking Bad universe.
10. Peggy Sulahian (Orange County)
This one’s not set in stone yet, but come on. Peggy did not shine on camera, and her solo footage could be truly agonizing. But every now and then she’d do something outlandish like lock herself in a hotel room for 24 hours only to emerge with a ten-minute long recording of Meghan’s baby crying, and all would be forgiven.
9. Robin Richmond Reichman (Vancouver)
A better friend than Mary Zilba deserved, Robin is most notable for spending the front half of her lone season engaged in a surreal C-plot that recalled the erratic second season of Twin Peaks, whereby she was submissive to a literal child in a duet of the American national anthem at a show jumping contest.
8-7. Teresa Aprea & Nicole Napolitano (New Jersey)
You could always count on the twins, a bizarre sight gag gone too far, to bring true gutter drama. Teresa’s husband maybe fucked her mother. Nicole’s boyfriend was maybe a gay Real Housewives superfan. While everyone else worried about Teresa Giudice’s impending prison stint, the twins played in the mud.
6. Ioulia Reynolds (Vancouver)
As the season went on, it quickly became apparent that Ioulia had only signed on for the comped drinks and dinners. Same, girl.
5. Katie Rost (Potomac)
It’s not accurate to call Katie Potomac’s emerging star — she’s far too insectoid and off-putting to ever win over an audience — but she was definitely season one’s greatest asset, and while the news of her firing for obsessively concealing her life from production was unsurprising, it was still a blow. Whether she was showing up to restaurant openings mollied out of her mind, or getting dumped by her fiancé while travelling to the reunion, the ball and gala girl provided. We’ll always have the Mrs. room.
4. Kim Fields (Atlanta)
Yes, Kim Fields was excruciatingly boring, but that was the point. The woman brought Tupperware and a novel to a boat party! She took her children on the Housewives vacation! She punctuated every argument with a sobbing meltdown, whether she was involved or not! Don’t you see the genius of this?! Just me? It’s just me. Alright. Fine.
3. Christina Kiesel (Vancouver)
That wasn’t her real age, and that was for sure not her real accent, but Christina was real in every other way. She blatantly checked out mentally circa episode two, yet still found time to possibly spite-fuck Jody’s daughter. Remarkable.
2. Carlton Gebbia (Beverly Hills)
Uh, she was a witch who hated Kyle Richards and cursed Joyce’s husband? I made the longform case here, but that logline should be enough.
1. Karent Sierra (Miami)
I will go to my grave loudly insisting that Karent with a T is the single most underrated Housewife in the canon. It is stunning that someone so image-obsessed could come off so badly. Between her desperation, her insincere grin, and her alien inability to understand how human society operates (but her determination to ram herself in there anyway!), Karent is every terrible Real Housewives impulse made sentient and urgent. Viva la dentist.