Who’s ready for the Thrilla in Manila! One by one, the ladies of “Real Housewives of Atlanta,” gather at the airport. Demetria and Cynthia are first to arrive for their flight to the Philippines. Claudia is ready to get her zen on. Porsha and her umpteen baggages arrive nest. She has one bag just so she can change from her arrive-at-the-airport ensemble to her fly-on-the-plane sweat suit. Such wasted energy. When Phaedra arrives and finally gets out of her limo, she is the bearer of bad news. NeNe will not be joining the ladies. Between ‘Cinderella’ rehearsals and her blood clots, she can’t go. Not surprisingly, no tears are shed.
We learn that for the first two days of the trip, Claudia has booked the ladies at an organic resort that does not allow meat, booze or drama. Say what? Now that’s just mean. The ladies pull into the first McDonald’s they see to get their fix before the detox begins. If this is how long it takes for them to cave for meat, booze and drama should be right down the road. Inside the restaurant, Claudia and Kenya joke with an unsuspecting local man. Kenya informs him that Claudia is single and Claudia informs him that Kenya is looking for a sperm donor.
Back in the States, NeNe is in New York City to meet with the creative director of ‘Cinderella.’ She wants to use two accents, one being NeNe. The director tells her the NeNe accent must be used sparingly. (Thank you!) His final piece of advice is to “make them feel the magic.” No pressure, NeNe. You got this.
The “Class Act” award of the night goes to Claudia. She gives the best room at the resort to Phaedra because Phaedra won the “Girl You Been Through Hell” award. Porsha goes to Phaedra’s room to throw shade on Cynthia, asking Phaedra how she feels about seeing her after the whole Mr. Chocolate fiasco. Phaedra says she doesn’t care, but we know she does because that woman can hold a grudge.
Kenya, Cynthia and Demetria are in Claudia’s room discussing the elephant not in the room, the cancer of the group, the therapy-fleeing woman who didn’t show, NeNe. Everyone agrees how much better the vacation energy is without her. A flashback is shown of housewives fighting in both Anguilla and Mexico to remind viewers how their good intentions have been paved with whacked roads.
Porsha says something very enlightening #Shocker. She suggests that Dr. Jeff is the seed-planter of good will for their group. Of course, with this analogy, NeNe would be the shovel. Phaedra suggests a caffeine enema, and as the wheels of contemplation turn in Porsha’s head, Phaedra throws in that it will boost your butt and her butt wants a big sip. Lawd, tell me this is not how she talks to Mr. Chocolate!
The ladies are severely jet-lagged and retire to their rooms as the sun comes up. The following afternoon, Claudia and Phaedra have a sit down with organic salad and most likely dressing. Claudia thanks Phaedra for coming on the trip, seeing how messed up her life is. Claudia shares that once upon a time she went through a messy divorce, slash, annulment, filled with depression, drinking and suicidal thoughts. When Claudia asks Phaedra how she knew divorce was the right choice, Phaedra tells her she is not going to discuss that with her. Dunh, dunh, dunh!
After the commercial break, Phaedra then goes on to discuss it with Claudia. Phaedra describes the hardships and trauma her kids are struggling with. Phaedra continues her acceptance speech and thanks NeNe and Porsha for being supportive during this great time of need. When Claudia asks about Kandi, Phaedra informs her that things are cool and they have a couples massage later in the day. Claudia is still hoping for a “Kumbaya” moment for all the ladies in the group.
Phaedra and Kandi meet up for their foot massages and Kandi asks Phaedra what she is saying to other people to make them feel like they’re having problems. Phaedra sells her the lost in translation theory and Kandi buys it. Phaedra tells Kandi that although she was big enough to forgive the elephant not on the trip, she will never forgive Cynthia.
During the interstitial, Gregg has a surprise for NeNe and tells her to close her eyes. He walks her down the busy Manhattan street to see her name and picture on Broadway. They do a little dance because “she done made it.” It’s yoga time in the Philippines. Kandi is not a natural at feeling the pulsation of her breath or her flexibility, which is unexpected since she’s the sex freak in the room. However she was the most capable of relaxation as evident from her snoring.
At dinner, Claudia tells Demetria and Cynthia that they cannot sit together because they need to mix it up. They look at her like, you be one crazy bish, but okay. The good news is Claudia has snuck in contraband in the name of booze and chicken. Holla! Claudia shares a few tid-bits of things to look forward to on their vacay like donkey riding. She then opens the floor Cynthia and Phaedra.
Cynthia apologizes to Phaedra for interfering in her and Apollo’s business. Phaedra doesn’t respond. This makes Porsha giggle and Claudia reprimands her for giggling. Porsha refuses to be checked for giggling so Porsha tells Claudia to hush. Kenya mumbles that Porsha is just looking for her moment to shine. Porsha says she will not be hushed.
Claudia stands and clinks a spoon against her wineglass, not gaining anyone’s attention until the glass breaks. (Bravo shows tend to go through a lot of wine glasses – don’t they?) Claudia announces this mess is between Phaedra and Cynthia and to let them have their conversation. All eyes are on Phaedra as she sips her soup. Calmly, Phaedra says she has nothing to say to Cynthia. Cold, brick wall is officially hit! But Kenya comes to the rescue and checks Phaedra for shutting people down.
Phaedra tells Kenya that she still doesn’t believe what Apollo admitted to lying about, if that wasn’t yet another lie because none of it makes sense including this. Kenya suggests another private talk between just the two of them. Phaedra agrees and the other ladies cheer! They end the evening having a genuinely good time. Porsha and Cynthia flirt with each other. The ladies discuss who has the biggest ass. Cynthia wins! As each of them shakes their booties around the room, bringing a new kind of zen to the staff, it will be interesting to see how they feel after next week’s donkey rides.
I am so lucky to combine blogging with my guilty pleasure of watching reality TV. I read all the comments and respond to most. Feel free to reach out to me. If you like fiction, I have two published novels: Three Days in Purgatory and A Reason to Run.