by Seija Rankin | Tue., Mar. 21, 2017 4:00 AM
To be a Real Housewife, of any city, is to be immediately thrown into a web of drama. No matter how well-meaning or innocent a person is when they start (cough...Meghan King Edmonds...cough), the Housewives will turn you.
The franchise, glorious as it is for its viewers and as fruitful as it's been for its Lord and Savior Andy Cohen, pretty much wreaks havoc on the personal and professional lives of all its cast members. One minute you're just a regular woman in Orange County, trying to keep your insurance company afloat, and then next you're embroiled in an international fake cancer scandal.
This week's big news further proves the point that absurd and horrifying things seem to circle the women of the franchise: A car owned by Kim DePaola was found completely burned, with the remains of two people inside. The tragedy is still very much a mystery, but what isn't a mystery is why this seemingly random turn of events happened: It's the Real Housewives curse.
You didn't hear that from us, of course. We're telling you about this curse in complete confidence, because the thing is probably contagious. Regardless of any foreboding, it's still a wild ride to look back at all the comprising positions these women have found themselves in.
Teresa Giudice's Jail Time
White collar crimes happen every day. People cheat on paperwork every day. Yet, somehow, no case of tax evasion has ever felt more absurd or over-the-top than the Giudice's. While they seemingly had all their faculties when they decided to defraud banks, lie to the IRS and not file taxes for a casual eight years, it leaves a person wondering how someone might go about doing that and not expect any legal repercussions. But lest we risk repeating ourselves, that is what happens in Housewives nation!
You receive an indictment of almost 40 counts. You become faced with up to 50 years in prison. You tell the media, mere hours after the news breaks, that you are hopeful you will "resolve this matter with the government as soon as possible." Once you sign up to be a Real Housewife, years-long tax evasion becomes simply a "matter.'
But all was not resolved, and one Joe Giudice is currently approaching his one year anniversary in prison, following Teresa's own dalliance on the inside. And, in continuance of the nature of absurdity, Teresa did her time at the exact same prison that Orange Is the New Black is based on. Full circle!
Bethenny Frankel's Not-So-Ex-Husband
Did you ever think you'd see the day in which you would be choosing Bethenny over literally anyone else in a fight? Welcome to that day. At the start of the Real Housewives of New York star's marriage to Jason Hoppy (for television purposes, anyway), we thought him good-natured. Well-meaning. A silly old bloke who was hard-pressed to put up with Bethenny's idiosyncrasies. Anyone who can listen to a person talk about Skinny Girl Margaritas must be a saint, we would say to ourselves.
Then the divorce proceedings began, and s--t hit the fan. Literally. Well, if we're speaking literally, then it...stayed in the toilet.
We apologize for being crass, but there's really no way around this. During the fallout of Bethenny and Jason's marriage, they ended up living in the same New York City apartment, presumably because they wanted to co-parent their daughter Bryn and also because they couldn't decide who had to move out. That's when Jason showed his true, absurdist colors. Among many unsettling claims—staring at her with menacing faces, following her around the apartment, locking the precious and beloved Cookie in a storage unit—was one that we have never been able to get over.
According to a divorce filing, Hoppy would, ahem, use the toilet and deliberately refrain from flushing, as an act of aggression. It doesn't get more terrifying than that.
Michaele Salahi's Brief Fake Kidnapping
Most Housewives fans remember Salahi, and her husband, Tareq, for their infamous crashing of Obama's first White House state dinner. And as well they should. That was epic and embarrassing and over-the-top and everything a person looks for in the Real Housewives franchise. And, the Washington, DC edition only last a single season, so there aren't a lot of other scenarios to clog the memory.
Except for what happened after the cameras stopped rolling. Once the reality show went by the way of Jason Hoppy (that is to say: in the toilet), so did the Salahi's marriage. It turns out they didn't actually get along that well without the aid of the spotlight, so Michaele decided to cut and run...straight into the arms of a member of Journey.
But that wasn't before her husband called the police to report her as a missing person, held a shady news conference at his home for the local NBC affiliate in which he claimed to have documented evidence "that people want to get my wife," and pontificated that she was actually kidnapped and has been forced to pretend like she ran away and was totally okay.
Remind us why this show didn't get renewed?
A Chateau Sheree Bash Goes Way Out of Control
It's been a long, hard road for Chateau Sheree; a road paved with hiccups and drama instead of the expected diamonds. First, it was the construction. The home famously took years and years to finish, with all kinds of drama getting in the way, from contractors to complaints that the building was an "eyesore" to the community. That's no easy pill to swallow. If you name your house something like Chateau Sheree, you need to back up that moniker in kind! The horror and embarrassment that Sheree must have felt to discover she was actually building Chateau She-Can't-Pay.
And then insult added to injury. Once construction was complete, the Real Housewives of Atlanta star decided to throw a blowout bash—only to have it all end in court. Apparently she allegedly didn't have the right certificates or permits for said party, and she had to pony up some fines. It's no jail time for tax evasion, but it just goes to further prove that in Housewives-land, there is no such thing as normal.
Anything That's Ever Happened to Faye Resnick
Women of the Real Housewives, take notes: Nobody does side drama like Faye Resnick. She is the stuff that this franchise is built on. Her circle of absurdity started decades before the show was even a twinkle in Andy Cohen's eye, with the O.J. Simpson monstrosity. Then that was made all the worse by the publication of her tell-all book, The Private Diary of a Life Interuppted, in which she wrote such sentences as "We wanted to open up a Starbucks coffee house" and "It wasn't until Nicole's marriage fell apart that she started relying on sex as both a weapon and an opiate."
Nowadays her dramas are less legalese, more oh my gosh I can't look away.
Yolanda Foster's Fake Munchausen Syndrome
Lyme Disease is a very real, very serious illness, yet somehow under the lens of the Real Housewives, it becomes so ridiculous that one can only laugh. Never has an autoimmune disease caused so much interpersonal turmoil for a group of friends. Never has IV treatment been so divisive. Never has the term Munchausen Syndrome been rife with so much controversy.
The details on the entire debacle are a little fuzzy. We know that Foster stands kind-of-accused of making up a disease. We know that a lot of the Beverly Hills cast members don't really understand what Lyme Disease or Munchausen's is. We know that we will never stop wanting to watch grown women fight over this maybe-faked disease that no one understands.
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