After another gut-churning episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Teresa Checks In, I’m ready to pay the tab and check the hell out. For those keeping score at home, this is the third week we’ve seen Joe Giudice play Mr. Mom to his four daughters while Teresa sits in the clink. This time, Joe unclogs a drain while Milania throws dog food and rocks into the koi pond.
As mayhem reins at the manor, Joe whines about how hard it is to act like a caring parent. “I never had to do any of this, and it’s exhausting. After a full day or hanging out with my kids, I think anybody would drink a full bottle of wine.” Joe Gorga agrees, saying, “Give it to Joe. There not just normal little girls. They’re tough.” Tough they may be, but you spawned them, Juicy, so they’re your burden, my felonious friend. I’d love to see Joe actually embrace this time with his kids instead of complaining, but that would require a modicum of self-awareness.
And so in lieu of that, we head to upstate New York, to Joe’s late father’s house. At one point, Milania grabs a mop and tells Joe he should get a job as a janitor. Which begs the question, what exactly does Joe do for a living? Because drinking copious amounts of wine isn’t a real profession, last I heard.
The Gorgas arrive bearing cupcakes and well wishes, and the two Joes try to get the pizza oven lit, but are having a rough time of it. They tell Milania to grab the chainsaw so they can cut more wood, but Melissa is not having it. Milania’s a kid. The men should get their own power tools, but because she’s the only one corralling the children for the weekend, she eventually gives up and goes inside to chop veggies and drink a bottle of red.
The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Teresa Checks In, brought to you by the North American Winegrowers Association. When life hands you forty-two months of hard time, drink wine! Now back to the show.
While the kids are all playing under Gia’s watchful eye, the adults stand around the kitchen table and talk to Teresa over the phone. She’s learned some very important life lessons while incarcerated, like the fact that after going away for a few months, women become like virgins again. Joe Gorga thinks that’s amazeballs, because “in prison, their vaginas get tighter. Maybe I’ll send Melissa there.” Oh, Joe. You misogynistic jerkoff, shut your piehole already.
Now everyone’s outside making pizza when Cousin Rosie pulls up. She brings, you guessed it, more booze, and now Juicy Joe has a drink in each hand. Melissa smiles and says this is “…like old times. We’re such a strong family, and I hope Teresa is prioritizing what’s important…that she can put the past behind and start a new page…” Then that soft focus fuzziness disappears as her tone hardens slightly, “I’m not going anywhere…we need to be a family.”
As Rosie makes a toast, she says in her voiceover, “It’s never easy to see anybody that you love go through anything. There ain’t nobody to blame [about Joe and Teresa’s situation]… Hopefully, they realize the mistakes they made and don’t do it again.”
It wasn’t a mistake, Rosie, it was fraud. And if they do it again, we’ll all be made to suffer through another season of Teresa Checks In, and I’m not sure any of us are ready for that.
The next morning, Joe, Melissa, with her loose vagina, and the little Gorgas leave, while the Giudices head over to the small chapel Joe’s father and cousins built. Though he doesn’t pray every day—No! Say it ain’t so, Joe!—today’s one of those days. He valiantly tries to lead his girls in the Lord’s Prayer, but no one can remember the words. Then Teresa calls, so it must be divine intervention. She vows to take the girls to mass every Sunday once she gets home.
Joe and the girls return to the mansion, where chaos once again ensues. Gabriella lets loose on Milania for hogging the ATV. Milania, in turn, runs off and hides. As the girls search the area, Joe hops on a small moped and goes tearing off—at eight miles per hour—into the woods surrounding the house. Gia is flabbergasted. Joe’s not supposed to be driving anything with a motor as part of his DUI sentence. He resents her taking him to task. She’s the kid around here, and she’s not even pulling her weight. Screw being a teenager, her family needs her. What if Joe did whatever the hell he wanted and neglected the kids? Gia wisely reminds him that they are indeed his responsibility, and if he neglected them, Teresa would divorce his ass.
At this point, I’m disgusted with Bravo, Teresa, and Joe for putting the kids through this. Gia seems to be trying to hold up under the pressure of it all, but she’s fourteen for God’s sake. Gabriella, who never uttered a peep, screams her head off. And Audriana gets lost in the midst of Milania’s constant bids for attention.
And speaking of Milania, she and her father have a heart-to-heart as she trims his back hair and states, for the record, he smells like cookie dough. Yeah. I just typed those words and shuddered a little as I did. Joe says that she’s sort of like his employee, and he could take her off as a tax reduction. Yeah, I typed that, too. A tax reduction. I’m pretty sure it’s that kind of thinking that got him in trouble in the first place.
Joe says he honestly didn’t know he was doing anything wrong. Banks practically threw money at his face. He’d fill out an application and voila, a loan would magically appear. “You’d get loans on everything, but those days are gone. What are you going to do?” Um…forty-two months in prison because you knew you couldn’t pay them back?
After that leap in logic, Joe dons his shiny helmet and pedals over to meet up for lunch with James Leonard, Attorney at Law. James slyly asks if Joe’s ever eaten in this particular restaurant. Only once, Joe admits, and that was the infamous table-flipping incident. We’re treated to a flashback featuring Ol’ Square Tits herself, Danielle Staub.
Joe reminds us that was seven long years ago, but through it all, he’s proud that he still has his hair. So, there’s that, I guess.
Joe drinks more wine while James stuffs his face and asks prodding questions, like what has Joe learned through this experience? Joe says with a straight face, “I didn’t know I was doing things wrong in the first place…but basically, I committed some kind of fraud with mortgages…I know now it wasn’t the right thing to do…” There you have it, ladies and gentlemen. That’s the closest thing you’ll ever get to an admission of guilt from this man. Bask in it for a moment.
So Saturday finally dawns, and Joe Gorga is all aflutter to see Teresa. He picks up the Giudice brood and his mom and they haul themselves to Danbury. Cameras weren’t allowed to film inside the prison. Joe said it was “…very hard on me…because your sister is back there like some caged animal…”
The final shot of the night is a family photo of Joe, Teresa, and the girls in happier times. I hate you, Bravo. I hate you so much right now.
So did you watch? What did you think? And if someone gave you a million dollars, would you shave Joe’s back?