The RHONY Season 7 Premiere and TBB on Huff Post Live!

Sonja and Ramona on Huff Post Live. I chime in around 7:30 and then I'm back at the end.

Sonja and Ramona on Huff Post Live. I chime in around 7:30 and then I’m back at the end.

By Tara Cushing (@TheBravoBlonde)

The Real Housewives of New York City are back, and they are back in a big way, a big Bethenny (Frankel) way. If you love Bethenny this is great, if you’re not her biggest fan, well it might not be. “The show was at least 40% about her,” my husband quipped at the end of the Season 7 premier episode which aired last Tuesday. So what happened in the other 60?

Ramonja– Ramona Singer, fresh from a very public divorce, and Sonja Morgan, who is acting like she’s fresh from her divorce, continue to be best frenemies. They fight for dominance of conversation, of the camera. Hey ladies, give up, Bethenny wins.

Heather Thomson– I love her, but was she even in this episode?

Kristen Taekman– Her daughter is finished with physical therapy, which will leave her plenty of time to go for the psychiatric variety she will be needing from having had a mother on Housewives.

Carole Radziwill– Carole has missed a deadline for a book deal. Perhaps Aviva Drescher‘s suggestion of a ghost writer wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

Countess LuAnn DeLesseps– She looks very, umm, refreshed. Hey I’m not knocking it, I just want to know what she’s done. Spill the beans please Lulu!

Dorinda Medley– Though Sonja and Ramona assured me on my Huff Post Live appearance (see clip below) that she “hit the ground running”, she seems more Real Housewives of New Jersey to me, than RHONY. Maybe it’s her boyfriend who seems the Jersey dry cleaning stereotype.

Bethenny Frankel– Aaaand back to the star, hey, she has no control over how much they edit her in or out. She’s back with the one liners and she’s as interesting as always. One thing that lit up Twitter was her scene with Million Dollar Listing New York‘s Fredrik Eklund, in which a displaced B states she is homeless, in the same breath that she talks about having bought a house in the Hamptons over the summer. In the words of Ramona on that evening’s Watch What Happens Liveshe should rent something while she works on renovating her new apartment, and figuring out what to do about the one that her soon to be ex still inhabits. Between her and Kim Zolciak‘s similar statement on last season’s Don’t Be Tardy, I think it’s time for a new series…The Real Homeless Housewives, now that would be an interesting show. Skinnygirl dumpster dive recipes anybody?

http://embed.live.huffingtonpost.com/HPLEmbedPlayer/?segmentId=550879082b8c2a7ca6000764&autoPlay=false

PS: I was not at the premier party this year. I blame the harsh New York winter that made me a hermit on my absence of an invite. I turned too many invites down over the last few months. I love everybody and sincerely wanted to go to everything but, I don’t love you more than I hate the snow!

What did you think of season 7 opener? Share your thoughts with us!

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Reality Roundup

We love Joanna Krupa's transformation, even though it's not as drastic as Bruce (Jennerfer) Jenner's.

We love Joanna Krupa’s transformation, even though it’s not as drastic as Bruce (Jennerfer) Jenner’s.

By Tara Cushing and Jamie Bertolini

According to Andy Cohen via Twitter, the entire cast of Vanderpump Rulesall let Stassi [Shroeder] ‘have it’” during the reunion filming on Friday. At one point, Jax Taylor tweeted “I need a drink so bad this reunion could not be going any worse ….” The SUR staff posted photos after filming wrapped at PUMP and neither Stassi, nor Kristen Doute were present.

Our deepest condolences to Vicki Gunvalson. The Real Housewives of Orange County star lost her mother on Wednesday. The original OC Housewife posted the following tribute on her Instagram page:

“Tonight I received a phone call that is every person’s

worst nightmare. My amazing, beautiful and strong

mother passed on and is now with the love of her life

my father in heaven. I am who I am today because

of her. An amazing cook, organized, bold personality

and had a sense of style and fashion I adored. I miss you

so much mommy! My life will never be the same without

you to give me advice and your wisdom. You were so healthy

and so vibrant, and so beautiful. I still need you. I love you MOM.”

 

In other unfortunate RHOC news, Radar Online reports that one season wonder Peggy Tanous is not only divorced from husband Micah, but could also soon be homeless. According to Radar, Tanous has missed a whopping 75 mortgage payments on her $840K home, and that she filed for bankruptcy two years ago. Court documents show that Tanous is only bringing in an estimated $30K a year. Her only current income is $2500 per month in checks from her ex, although she has never publicly acknowledged their split. We have interviewed Peggy and she has always remained a friend of TBB ‘s Twitter. If the reports are true, we wish her the best during this trying time.

Caroline Manzo’s son, Christopher Manzo of the Real Housewives of New Jersey had a second chance on Millionaire Matchmaker this week. According to his interview on Bravotv.com, he is still single but has dated since appearing on the show.

Real Housewives of Miami gone Beverly Hills Joanna Krupa took to Instagram to show off a new bob this week. The model had her hair cut by dry cut specialist and stylist to the stars, Mika Fowler. The new do is a sophisticated look for Krupa. We love the upgrade! To see more of Mika’s work you can follow her @mikafowler on twitter and @mikafowlerxx on Instagram.

In Million Dollar Listing New York news, Fredrik Eklund and his husband Derek Kaplan have once again listed their Manhattan apartment for sale. The recently renovated, West 27th Street home is on the market for $2,995,000. Fredrik and Luis D. Ortiz also announced that they’ve co-listed a Chelsea Penthouse to the tune of $6 million. We are wondering if this will be seen on the net season of MDLNY.

Good news for GG2D fans: Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce has been renewed for a second season and production is set to begin filming this summer. Bravo‘s first big foray into scripted television has been a big hit.

It appears that Kristen Taekman and Bethenny Frankel are not hitting it off as filming continues for The Real Housewives of New York City. According to Kristen’s interview on Bravotv.com. Kristen states, “I feel like I was really looking forward to getting to know her,” she tells the New York Daily News, “and at this point I feel like that hasn’t really happened yet in a way that I wanted to.” Will Kristen have a glass of Skinnygirl tossed at her next season? We will have to wait and see.

Southern Charm fans, T. Rav returns to our TVs on March 16. Being a South Carolina resident (Jamie) and quite a fan of Charleston, I love this show and the drama that it brings! Also, I can’t wait to see the rise and fall of Ravenel’s campaign if we’re being totally honest here.

Outside of Bravo TV, network news heavyweight Brian Williams is involved in a scandal that’s becoming sleazier than one of his daughter’s scenes on Girls. The Nightly News anchor and managing editor is stepping away from the news desk at NBC for an undisclosed period of time, following allegations that he lied about his personal experiences and eyewitness accounts. NBC is investigating while Lester Holt will be filling in for Williams.

Last we bring you more news about Bruce Jenner, here on in referred to as Jennerfer. Jennerfer has been a huge topic of conversation over the last few weeks with the reveal that he/she is indeed undergoing a gender metamorphosis. After months of speculation following surgery to remove his Adam’s Apple, the former Olympic athlete and Keeping Up With the Kardashians star has finally come out, or his family pushed him out, of  the gender reassignment closet. Rumored to be filming a docu-series for E!, and revealing his/her process in an exclusive Diane Sawyer interview, Jennerfer already had enough emotional stress. Sadly Jennerfer was involved in a fatal car accident in Malibu, along the Pacific Coast Highway Saturday morning. While he/she walked away without a scratch, the Lexus Jennerfer rear-ended was struck by a Hummer when it was pushed into oncoming traffic, killing the driver. According to TMZ police are obtaining a search warrant for Jennerfer’s cellphone to determine if the accident is a result of texting while driving, which is illegal in the state of California. If it is determined that Jennerfer was texting at the time of the accident, he/she could be charged with vehicular manslaughter.

 

The Survivor-An Interview with Amber Marchese

imageSpeaking to The Real Housewives is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get. This is truly the case when chatting with Real Housewives of New JerseyAmber Marchese. On the show she comes across intense, a fact that she will openly admit to, but over an iPhone she’s quite calm. She describes herself as laid back, a quality she regrets we didn’t see much of on her rookie season. Currently enjoying the comfort of what she calls her own little world, she can easily reflect on the ups and downs of Real Housewife-hood, with a level head. However, don’t mess with her husband, or those claws will still find their way to the surface…

TBB: Congratulations on surviving your first season of Housewives. How did you get involved with the show?

AM: Thank you I thought you were going to say breast cancer (laughs).

TBB: We will definitely talk about that later on!

AM: I was taking acting lessons and auditioning so my name was out there a lot and (Bravo) caught wind of me. They started asking me questions and asking about my life. Then they found out I was friends with Melissa (Gorga) and thought that was an intriguing fact, even though we were friends in our twenties.

TBB: What was her initial reaction when she heard she was going to be working with you?

AM: She texted me and said, “Congrats and welcome to the show!” I thought she was really happy, but as time went on I felt like she didn’t stand by my side in the way a good friend should have.

TBB: I’m assuming, since you knew Melissa, you had been a viewer of the show. What was your biggest worry coming into it?

AM: Actually I was not a viewer. I would watch it once in a while since seeing Melissa on there. I talked to her right before she was going on and she asked me if she should be going on and I actually told her not to do it! Now, here I am five years later and I’m eating my words. My biggest worry was how much time it was going to take me away from my children. It was a pleasant surprise that it didn’t really take me away from them at all. We filmed a lot together as a family and most of my interviews were in the house while my kids played upstairs. It’s truly a dream job for moms. Of course, my life is different and (the show) pulled me away sometimes, but I also have a very supportive husband who is an active father. We really are a team. Not to toot my own horn, but I am so good at being a mom and I devote my every waking moment to these kids that even with the show filming, I didn’t skip a beat!

TBB: What was your most cringe worthy moment that made the final cut?

AM: I think there was a lot of them, but the one that stands out is when I cried on the phone with Teresa (Giudice). There was so much behind that phone call. I was just getting my news about the 5 year (breast cancer survival) mark not going so well and there I was getting on the phone after I’d just heard someone’s bad news and I lost it. I was really hoping they wouldn’t include that one. Also when I was drunk in Florida and I smoked that cigarette. I wish they hadn’t shown that, but hey, I’m not going to beat myself up over having a brief lapse of judgement.

TBB: Was there anything you filmed that didn’t make it to TV that you wish had?

AM: More of my family, especially my Christmas.They showed everybody else’s Christmases but decided not to put my family’s Christmas on there, which I don’t know why. Also more of the tenderness of my husband (Jim Marchese) and how he was so super kind to Dina (Manzo) even after she was acting like a big baby because he said, “Does anybody here have an IQ  above 12?” after I was attacked at our best friend’s party. My husband actually took her out to dinner to apologize. He even gave her ideas for the Project Ladybug event that they filmed for the finale. He was nothing but kind to her, nothing but kind to all of the ladies, yet they decided to go after him and they deserved what they got!

TBB: Jim was quite the controversial personality on RHONJ. What are your thoughts about his on camera and online behavior?

AM: I think he gives out exactly what he needs to give out. He’s getting attacked all the time and there’s no reason for him to be called all the names he’s been called. (His) best friend (Bobby Ciasulli) gutted him! Bobby caused all the trouble and I think (Jim) did everything he should be doing. When people are calling him names he has a right to defend himself. It took a lot for him to get to the point he got with Joe (Gorga). Again, I had just been attacked and he was asking him about why we didn’t go bowling. My husband is so well respected in his position (at work) and he’s such a kind and generous man. He’s got a huge heart and employs many people who all adore him.

TBB: You are a proud breast cancer survivor. What is it that you hope having been on this show will accomplish for others with this disease?

AM: What I’ve seen so far since the end of the show has been wonderful. People have emailed me, direct messaged me, even wrote me letters saying they are stronger because they saw what I went through. Some said they had mammograms and got lumps checked out after seeing me and caught (cancer) in time. (Housewives) was a hard show to be on, but that was my purpose for being on the show.

TBB: Complete this sentence … “I used to think blank about reality television, but now I think blank“…

AM: I used to think it was easy to be on reality TV, but now I realize it is very, very difficult. I didn’t realize how cutthroat it is. The egos on the show are always competing. There are people out for blood and they will do whatever it takes to make it. It doesn’t matter who they hurt or not hurt. I just would never do that to anybody. I would never hurt another person, especially over a show.

TBB: Are you open to being on another season?

AM: I’m a very simple creature, if the money’s right then of course. If it makes sense for my family and it pays for my kids’ college tuition, then why not? It was fun. I enjoyed the ride. There were some good points and some bad points, like any job.

TBB: The holidays are right around the corner, how will the Marchese family celebrate? 

AM: The Marchese family always takes a trip every single year. This year we’re going to Hershey Park (PA). I love to create that magical Christmas for my kids…and of course there will be lots of family and food!

TBB: Is there anything else you would like the fans to know?

AM: I was just telling Jim that I feel so far removed from the show at this point because it’s been so long since I filmed, so it’s hard to imagine what I was feeling at the time. I felt like I stood my ground enough, that I didn’t buckle under pressure, however, on an everyday basis I’m pretty laid back and I don’t really feel like viewers saw that side of me. Of course I get angry and sad sometimes, but if you film only those points in my life than of course I’m going to seem intense. I really just love my friends and family and shutting the world out and staying within my family, my little world.