Southern Charm begins with a cheery hip-hop around the Charmers’ homes, but the mood drops when we stop at Craig’s messy place — a reflection of his shattered heart. Craig’s feeling dreary and droopy so he takes a leap, and connects via phone with a life coach. Craig found the pro on the internet, the move inspired by an enlightening Uber ride. Coach Laura arranges a meeting at his home — and Craig sees a glimmer of hope amid the clutter. We catch up with Cameran and her mother, who are shopping for a going-home outfit for the baby. Her excited mom briefly forgets her grandchild’s gender, and Cameran’s anxiety is flaring — because she’s worried about germs and her ditzy mother dropping her newborn. She hopes not to spin into an emotional tizzy after the delivery, and prays that she’ll be as truly wonderful as her own sweet mama.
We catch up with Shep and Austen, who are meeting up with Naomie, to gossip about Craig. Naomie delivers her latest Craig update, as Chelsea joins the gab-fest. The group discusses the Peyton factor, and Chelsea rats Craig out for being attracted to the new girl. Naomie almost passes out, evidently realizing that her latest wave of vitriolic wrath may have actually turned Craig off. We shift back to Craig, who’s being comforted by his real love, in a fabric store. The saleslady is showing off the latest embroidery technology when Kathryn arrives, looking confused, likely wondering how Bravo plans to sell this out-there scenario. Kathryn snarks that Craig’s #pastimes are fleeting, as her shopping pal spills his bachelor sorrows. Kathryn empathizes with Craig, but thinks that some time out from under Naomie’s glare would do him good.
A visit with Austen’s family is next on the schedule, and as the clan interacts, Austen offers insight on how the death of one sister, and arrival of his younger sister, redefined the family. The group digs into dinner, and it doesn’t take long before Austen’s dodgy life decisions are put in the hot-seat. Austen reveals his plan to make and sell his own beer, which invites lots of raised eyebrows. Austen has laid no groundwork, and his family wants to see action, not empty jabber.
Craig’s new life coach, Laura, is introduced, and she greets Craig cheerfully before nudging him to open up, hoping to get a handle on his issues. Craig reveals that his brain is whirling out of control, and naturally knows how to complete any simpleton’s sentences — quirks Naomie failed to appreciate. Laura lays it on thick, pointing out that Craig’s smart and pretty darned adorable. Craig agrees that he’s actually super awesome, and mighty cute to boot. Laura promises to train his hyper brain and improve his lame listening skills. Craig is excited, and ready to dive into his assigned life homework.
We shift over to Thomas, who’s joining Whitney and Patricia for dinner. Patricia flashes her sparkler, cheering for the institution of multiple marriages. Thomas jokes that he’s swimming in free milk, and sees little need for legalities. Patricia asks about his relationship with Ashley, and Thomas gives his sweetheart a solid thumbs up — but wishes that she would occasionally take it down a notch. He mentions that the kiddos love her — clearly checking off that top priority box. Patricia points out that only special people become hospice nurses, and adds that she admires Ashley’s chosen career path. Thomas agrees, but believes that Ashley could use a cultural makeover. Patricia agrees to give her some pinky-up pointers.
Austen and Chelsea reconnect on a driving range next, and Austen reveals that he has agreed to cohost an upcoming Halloween party with Bravo repeat, Peyton. The bash will set the scene for a forced confrontation between Peyton and Naomie — the mashup offering high fright potential. Meanwhile, Cameran and Naomie are getting pedicures, and Cameran grabs the opportunity to give Michael a shout-out for his primo foot rubs. Chelsea admits that her edgy joy takes a nosedive every time Craig enters the room, so Cameran encourages her to keep the reconciliation door slammed shut. They discuss the Peyton dynamic, and the obvious fact that Naomie wants Craig alone forever. Naomie labels the tall blonde “thirsty” — evidently the title for any pretty girl invading her reality turf. Cameran advises Naomie to chill, because Peyton clearly likes real men who DON’T sew.
The Halloween party scene is set, so Austen and Peyton have a quick co-host chat before the fireworks kick off. Peyton is dressed like a funky unicorn, and Austen rocks the look of a beer-swilling bum, posing as a stylist-starved ladies man. The cast is busy pulling together costumes, and Craig has braced himself for Naomie’s next hissy fit. The breakup gals gather, and soon learn that Cameran is beached at home for the night.
The suspense begins to build for Naomie and Peyton’s big showdown, especially because it’s been predetermined that Peyton is a parched reality “social climber.” The guests begin to arrive, and it takes about a hot second for Kathryn and Naomie to start shading Peyton’s costume and overall appearance. J.D. dares to show his brazen mug in Naomie’s presence, and her boiling negativity almost blows her wig off.
Thomas and Kathryn exchange pleasantries, while Naomie’s backup dancers continue to slam Peyton’s getup.
Naomie and Craig finally connect, and “nice Naomie” manages a smile and a hug. Austen forces an intro to Peyton, and the “nice” quickly shifts to nasty. Naomie begins her rehearsed inquisition, but before Peyton can get a word out, Naomie slams her for being a thirsty bitch in a stupid costume. Naomie denies that her swiping she-claws have anything to do with Craig, before she bullies Peyton out of her own party.
Austen chases her down and interprets Naomie’s verbal venom, while marveling at the realization that it was Craig who really dodged a bullet. Austen scolds Naomie for being a raging bitch, and she’s furious that he’s dissing her fearless protection. Craig stabs his way into the convo, and Naomie continues to spin, while Craig offers snappy commentary about the phenomenon that is their relationship.
He announces that the real Naomie is back, but now gnawing his soul in public, rather than hovering over his sewing machine. Craig labels Naomie “scary as sh*t” narrating what viewers can plainly see. Naomie rants and raves paranoid conspiracy theories, ending the episode with a hate-filled exit. Again.
The cast mix and match continues next week.