RECAP: Real Housewives of Orange County “Baptism by Fire” [Episode 19]

Becca is a Senior Editor for All About The Tea. She's a coastal girl who loves the outdoors, and writing about the sneaky and silly side of reality TV. Her bio is short, but her snark is endless. She loves writing for the sharpest posters in the world.

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It’s the big day, as we join the women on the finale evening of The Real Housewives of Orange County.  Pastor Mike joins Tamra as all the women head to the baptism venue. Meghan is sad without her Papa Jim, and Shannon describes her crazy, panicky happiness with her David Beh-door. It’s a sea of white, as the group gathers for the big moment. Blast from the past Tammy makes an appearance, reminding me why I had completely forgotten about her.  Shannon feels weird, because there has been recent radio silence from Vicki.  Tamra is excited to share her big moment, and reveal a better side of herself to all of her snarkiest friends. The choir belts out a hymn, and they sound great. Pastor Mike reminds the crowd what baptism symbolizes, and Tamra reads a  heartfelt speech, giving her relationship with Jesus the credit for bringing her though a difficult period in her life. Tamra enters the pool with Heather disrespectfully and rudely commenting in the background, and Vicki gasping at her angelic beauty. 


Pastor Mike dunks her under, and then Bravo takes us on an odd underwater journey of Tamra’s bitchiest hits, from the wine-flings to the f-bombs.  Pastor Mike holds her down an extra few seconds for good measure, but no worries, because despite the oxygen deprived graphics, Tamra survives. Tamra pops up, and gasps at the realization that her trashy antics have melted away, and her backbiting friends are actually breathtaking. I will never question anyone’s journey of faith, so I am happy for Tamra, at least until the first commercial. The choir belts out a rousing “Amazing Grace,” as the cast dabs their tears. All of the women express their affection and pride at Tamra’s testimony, and she and Vicki share a sweet moment. Tamra runs off to change, ready to start anew, creating fresh regrettable memories. 


The white afterparty begins, and the shindig looks lovely. Vicki’s brother, Billy, and his girlfriend Rhonda are present for the occasion, and Tamra’s tacky cake designs are highlighted. Vicki makes a conscious decision to stay away from everyone, and Tamra is happy that her peaceful day is being respected. Former RHOC flighty pothead cast member, Lynn Curtin, pops up, and the crowd mingles, and boringly gasps over each other’s wealth. YAWN. Meghan finds purpose by trying to engage Vicki, and Vicki takes that gnat-like cue and prepares to leave. Tamra is getting a complete makeover behind the scenes, trying to wow the crowd with her dewey renewed beauty.

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Back at the party, Shannon is angry at Vicki, peeved that her vise-like friendship is being doubted.  Vicki reminds us that she kept David’s sordid affair quiet when it really mattered, and is appalled at the lack of loyalty offered in return. Heather repeats a rumor shared by Briana, involving Terry serving as a midnight IV middleman to a desperate Brooks, an occurrence that Terry denies. Shannon, Heather, and Meghan gossip themselves into a lather, and Meghan mindlessly drops a theory that Brooks is scheming to dodge child support. The women want to pass on a Vicki ambush, but relevance-hungry Meghan is jittery with excitement, as she coaxes a confrontation. Lizzie has wisely disengaged, clearly the brains of the bunch.


Tamra emerges, and Vicki runs in the opposite direction, obviously trying to avoid a group conflict. Billy warmly engages Tamra, and Tamra responds appropriately. So far, so good.  Heather and Shannon butt their honkers into the convo, instantly destroying the friendly banter. Heather jabs that Vicki is using Billy as a pawn, and Shannon continues her nasally bleating in the background. Shannon gouges into poor Billy hard, pushing her controlling view, trying frantically to sway his brotherly love.

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Heather gets in Vicki’s face, interrogating her about Brooks’ absence. We hop back and forth between Heather and Shannon’s accusatory chatter, until Rhonda jumps in and speaks truth, pegging Shannon’s conditional loyalty. Shannon waves her finger around, her orangey spray tan a-blazing with indignant righteousness.  Rhonda pulls out the big guns, and blasts her for not being a reciprocal friend in crisis.

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Shannon feels betrayed, because Rhonda read her, and read her GOOD.

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Shannon charges after Vicki, while the others bellow in the background to reign in her anxiety fueled fury. Shannon wags her finger furiously, raging against Vicki’s big woo-hooer spilling the beans that all of the OC was already yakking about. Shannon is furious that Rhonda heard from Vicki about David’s affair, and followed up by nailing her with a dose of her own double-crossing medicine. Vicki decides to vamoose, because no amount of holiness will wash away the combo of cancer and extramarital canoodling that has hijacked this whole pathetic season.  Shannon flounces over to the others to share her incredulous shock, and the women dramatically join in her horror.  


Rhonda admits that she should have resisted the zinger, but Vicki believes that Shannon deserved the push-back. Pastor Mike sweetly and naively offers to lend a hand, and he is likely thankful that his kind offer is rejected. Vicki expresses depressed sadness over her mother’s death, and her desire to just be left in peace. Meghan proclaims that her investigation findings prove that Vicki and Brooks are dirty, filthy liars, and should be sentenced to weekly colonics at the Beh-doors. We hear the IV story for the third time, as Shannon sicks a frothing Meghan into a confrontation. More finger wagging, more of Heather’s repetitive condescending commentary, and more of Shannon’s bleating ensues. Tamra spills to Vicki that Meghan’s snooping combined with Briana’s bitterness has made Brooks look guilty as sin. Vicki knows. 


In closing, Vicki and the dirty liar broke up, and Brooks is hightailing it to Florida. Meghan believes that she deserves to be in charge of calling out all fibbers all over America.  Jimmy vows to continue to put his trophy bride on the naughty step, until she throws away all of her ugly headbands. Shannon learned that frantic forgiveness, and unclenching her butt cheeks have changed her life. Heather has found her prosperous life demanding, but has learned that a big fat wallet feels mighty good. Tamra has discovered strength in the Lord, and Eddie just wants his $8k back.  Heather expands her owl eyes in closing, assuring us viewers that they do love and care about Vicki, as long as her lying ass doesn’t land her in hell. 


That is a WRAP folks…HALLELUJAH and WOO-HOO! It’s time to whoop it up at the reunion, and it should be a DOOZY!    


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