Southern Charm kicks off with a rotten grapefruit in Naomie’s kitchen, and sterilized Solo cup organization in Shep’s. Cameron believes that labor might be kicking in, explaining her symptoms to her mom. Cameran is calm and focused on the impending push-party, and while her mother is pleased as punch, she promises to keep her Granny hyper-joy under control.
Kathryn and Chelsea hit the gym next, because Kathryn has gotten hippy and scarred from birthing two babies. Kathryn shares that she’s lonely and bored, and hopes that slimmer hips will fill the emotional gap. Kathryn admits that she doesn’t know how to date, unless you count covert flirting with her baby daddy. Kathryn declares that she manipulates Thomas to the hilt, especially when it means scoring her own way, by stroking his ego. The gals conclude that a bangin’ bod is always the best revenge.
Austen and Craig are busy starting their days of nothingness with a productive jog. Austen’s rebound lover, Victoria, is brought back into the dialogue, and Craig weighs in on his buddy’s latest dumped love connection. Austen boings back and forth between sponging off Chelsea, and shuffling back to good-time Victoria. Victoria is ready to party all night, but Chelsea is a snooze, who likes to be awake when she snips air all day. Craig advises him to go with the party girl, and Austen concurs.
We check in with Naomie, who’s busy folding sheets with Wilson. Naomie wants to can the drama and get focused on work, rather than psycho-stalking the pillow-maker. She needs to focus on her — somehow selling that such a direction is an actual shift. We listen in on a convo between Shep and his father, Rip, and rewind the quandary that defines Shep’s eternal childhood. At least Shep’s real estate portfolio is growing up, and his mailbox money is flowing.
A shopping trip to Gwynn’s is next — Patricia meeting Ashley to elbow her into a Southern belle makeover. It’s time to turn a Cali Barbie into a proper southern lady, and as Ashley tries on some appropriate dresses, Patricia reminds her that a rescued hooker isn’t the right vibe. Patricia gently advises her to stop playing house, and get busy with her own career and life. Patricia delivers some on-point life advice — and Ashley agrees, at least in theory.
We hop to Chelsea, who shares that she’s planning a cast jaunt back to her old stomping grounds, Hilton Head Island.
It’s a guys night out next — with Whitney, Shep and Thomas meeting up for drinks and a manly gossip session. Thomas assures the guys that he’s happy with Ashley, despite that fact that she has cramped his dating style. Thomas offers analysis about his chaotic relationship with Kathryn, adding that they celebrate the chaos with yearly hook-ups. Thomas admits that their relationship includes flirtatious undertones, which he labels “playful.”
We next hear that Kathryn has landed an internship at Gwynn’s, and cameras shadow her first round of stylist training. Kathryn is put on the spot to style an anonymous shopper, and she manages to pull off a decent showing.
Victoria busts onto the scene next, meeting up with Austen to learn if he has reconsidered his options. Austen redetermines that Victoria is the one — especially when Bravo is picking up the tab. Victoria is worried that Austen is not to be trusted, but is thrilled when he confirms that she has beat out a decidedly disgusted Chelsea.
Patricia is hosting one of her famous all male dinners, always a dapper culinary delight. Thomas, Whitney, Austen and J.D arrive, just in time to hear all about Ashley and Thomas’ latest squabble. Thomas reveals that he sometimes feels pressured and controlled, and doesn’t appreciate it. Shep arrives, and Craig rushes in last. We finally learn that Naomie scored custody of Gizmo, lifting fan concern over the possibility that the kitty had been simmered, Glenn Close style.
They sit down to a vegan dinner, where Patricia delivers a lecture about women giving away free milk without a ring — shooting a knowing glare at Thomas. Fortune cookies end the meal, the guys sharing one last guffaw over the snappy predictions. Thomas drops that Ashley isn’t on birth control, and that she does eventually want to have a child — preferably while wearing a rock. Meanwhile, Cameran’s baby wants out, but her clenched cervix isn’t up for it.
The episode wraps with Thomas and Kathryn meeting for dinner, so Kathryn can spill her broken heart over Ashley being included in a posted family photo. They agree to pull together a party for Saint, to celebrate his second birthday. Ashley is officially left out, in order for Thomas and Kathryn to present an uncluttered united front for the kiddos. The duo discusses their flirty friendship-only relationship, and agree to keep the peace talks rolling. They shake on friendship, and to swapping cringeworthy googly eyes once a year.
Next week, Gizmo and Craig are reunited, and Ashley and Kathryn butt heads.