Recap: RHOBH Season 2 Premiere

Well the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills are back, and it couldn’t be at a better (or worse) time, depending on how you look at it. I, for one, have been eager to see it return, and to see how they would deal with the recent tragic death of Russell Armstrong. Let’s just say, it didn’t disappoint.

The episode’s motto was “life goes on”, a clear, concise message to the haters, and that’s exactly what the show did. Obviously they couldn’t ignore Russell’s suicide – it would be a mistake if they did – and so, in the opening sequence, the cast (minus Taylor) discussed the recent events in a somber pre-taped discussion, where they maintained not only theirs but also Bravo’s innocence in the whole situation. Was it authentic? Probably not, but it got the point across: Life goes on and the Real Housewives are here to stay.

Despite the overt address to the situation, the show quickly returned to what it does best: shopping, sibling rivalries, and dinner parties. What I don’t understand is why people think it’s a good idea to stir up trouble at dinner parties? It’s tasteless, and unnecessary – clearly these are not the Betty’s from Mad Men who sweep trouble under the table. In fact, if there’s a table laid out, you can guarantee trouble won’t be far behind.

While Adrienne’s shindig wasn’t quite as cringe-worthy as Allison DuBois’ electric cigarette debacle from last year, it certainly highlighted cracks not only in the group’s dynamic but also in my favorite couple, Adrienne and Paul. Whereas last season I adored their lighthearted banter and playful competitiveness, this season began with cruel jabs and uncomfortable quarreling, something that even raised Lisa’s botox-ridden eyebrows. At one point Adrienne joked, “Two hours is a long time for [them]” to spend together, but the reality is she reached her boiling point within several minutes of being in his presence. Bad things are sure to follow.

And finally, as with every Real Housewives franchise, there is a new troublemaker: Ken. Whereas last season, it was all about Kyle versus Camille, this season has set Ken up as villain, the west coast’s Jill Zarin if you will. All I could think as Giggy drank from the champagne glass was: Is Ken the new Camille? He purposefully upset the unsettled peace by calling therapy-goers ‘weak’ and made cruel, flippant remarks about Taylor’s failing marriage. I found it interesting that his insensitivity remained in the episode (after recent re-edits) but I suppose it all goes back to the initial point: Life goes on. Bravo execs can’t airbrush the past, but perhaps they can acknowledge it and move on. Previously he presented himself as the protective and supportive husband of the (always) fabulous Lisa.

What are your thoughts?

Image via: Neon Tommy

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