Bringing Back Bethenny

Bethenny recognized me at a book signing in August of 2013.

Bethenny recognized me at a book signing in August of 2013.

“After many years of hesitation, I have decided to return to my roots on The Real Housewives of New York City. I have been through a long and arduous road since my departure, and I’m finally coming out on the other side. It finally feels right to go home again.” Bethenny Frankel

The above is an excerpt from Bethenny’s October 20th blog post. On her website the original  Skinnygirl confirmed long suspected rumors of a return to the reality series that made her a household name. The announcement crashed her website and it seems that Bethenny and Bravo fans alike are rejoicing. According to  Bethenny will be joining a season 7 cast that features LuAnn De Lesseps (full time  once again), Heather Thomson, Kristen Taekman, and Sonja Morgan.

After a season 6 that suffered a serious ratings drop, it appears Bravo feels Bethenny is RHONY‘s Hail Mary. What I wonder is, is Bravo Bethenny’s HM as well? After her talk show tanked, the self-proclaimed queen of TMI went into a bit of hiding. Aside from an Instagram photo that caused a bit of stir, we really didn’t hear much from her. Now with a new children’s book, Cookie Meets Peanut, on the market, she has started making the rounds again, appearing on shows like Access Hollywood and at book stores to re-connect with her fans  and sign copies of her first foray into kiddie fiction. The fact that it is all timed with this announcement can make one wonder if she needed the air time as a Real Housewife as much as the Real Housewives need her.

It has long been argued that, despite having your dirty laundry aired to the masses and  falling prey to a producer’s ability to edit you any way they wish, being a Real Housewife is worth the cons. It’s been viewed as the ultimate launch to something greater, but lately the track record of that is even less promising than a match made on ABC‘s The Bachelor. The Housewives empire has yet to see a fledgling fly far from the nest. Bethenny made it the furthest. Even though Nene Leakes has supposedly amassed a significant amount of notoriety, she never truly left the show.

Every single one of Andy Cohen‘s chosen women that fled the flock, has either vanished from the vernacular, or come crawling back to, as Bethenny calls it, her “roots”. The trend started with Dina Manzo who was followed by her sister-in-law Jacqueline Laurita. Both women, following their departures, one by choice and one by force, suffered a significant failure to launch once Bravo clipped her wings.

Observe twitter and you will see several of the ghosts of Housewives past treading water, still trying to make it by toting any product and taking bits on any reality show…(Couples Therapy anybody?)…just to stay relevant. The fact that Bethenny, the one who seemed to really find her own way and success sans Bravo TV, is back is a really strong statement.

What is it about being a reality star that makes it so hard to stay and yet so hard to stay away? Is it the fact that these people aren’t so much famous, but more infamous? Is it that they love the camera and the glamour of being on television, yet don’t really have the unique set of skills required to be actors? Or are these people an extremely self-obsessed narcissistic microcosm of society? I am not accusing anybody here, I am just simply trying to understand, and to get the thoughts of you, the fans of these shows. Why do these people need this forum to thrive?

As far as Bethenny’s  return, I think as a viewer it will be great. She is entertaining and I will always be a fan. The larger picture however, the subliminal message about life on and after reality tv…well that’s another story.


Tell us are you excited for Bethenny Frankel’s return to RHONY? Are there any other Housewives you’d like to see “resurrected’? 

2 thoughts on “Bringing Back Bethenny

  1. I’m afraid I don’t get it in Bethenny’s case. Isn’t she a “rich bitch” from Skinny Girl? Why set yourself up for failure? RHONY is struggling and on its last leg (sorry – no pun intended). She will have to deliver huge ratings to make it seem worthwhile to Bravo. But the franchise, Bethenny and the RH series have reached oversaturation. I would be surprised if they can reach the ratings boost they are expecting/ need. While the $1MM she is likely being paid sounds great, after taxes I’m not sure it’s worth the humiliation or possible nail in the career coffin that a failure could very well produce. Best of luck. I was never a RHONY watcher and won’t start now. I’ll just watch how this all plays out from the sidelines.

  2. I am thrilled of the return of Bethenny!! I thought the show was done this will be an awesome turnaround. She is funny, quick and takes no shit! Looking forward to it!!

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