This week on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, the discussion continues about what Erika Girardi knew about her husband Tom Girardi’s allegedly inappropriate financial decisions and when she knew it. The ladies celebrate the holidays. And they finally gather with Erika for the first time since the trip to the desert for another famous Housewives dinner. It might resemble a deposition more than a dinner.
The summit at Dorit Kemsley’s house (without Erika) continues. Sutton Stracke tells the group that she talked to an attorney about the situation she might be in already and what are the ramifications of continuing her friendship with Erika. Sutton is worried about her reputation with being associated with this situation while on the boards of charities and her other philanthropic work. Lisa Rinna is upset that Sutton is focused on her own reputation. Kyle Richards asks if Sutton is worried about legalities also, and Sutton says she is.
Kyle admits to talking to some friends who are attorneys. Dorit chimes in that she sought some advice for this (P. K. Kemsley and Boy George). Dorit echoes what P.K. said, that she doesn’t want her support of Erika to be misinterpreted as support for the “atrocious things that have been done.” Sutton chimes in with some gossip about the law firm. She says, “One of the partners at his law firm left because his wife told the partner, ‘honey, something’s off.’” Sutton says that was 10 years ago. Lisa brings up that “the son-in-law just left” recently.
Garcelle Beauvais asks Sutton if she believes that she’s been told the truth. Sutton says, “no,” and gives an example about the three-years-ago-story of the broken ankle, head injury, car accident, unconscious for 12 hours event. Crystal Kung Minkoff says that it was pretty clear to her on the desert trip, that the car accident was a pivotal moment in his decline. Sutton says, “I don’t buy the three-year package.” The ladies try to reconcile the three-year timeline with the reporting about what’s come out that has happened for more than a decade. Sutton says that about ten years ago was when it started to come out that Tom was “not paying settlement money.” Sutton thinks that Erika having the same story as Tom’s defense team is not a coincidence.
In discussing whether or not to believe Erika, Lisa turns the conversation to whether the group believed Denise Richards or not in the allegations last year about Brandi Glanville’s claim of a relationship with Denise. Kyle says, “No, I think she was just saving her marriage.” Lisa is saying, at this point, she doesn’t know what’s going on with Erika, so she’s not going to abandon her friendship with Erika.
Sutton goes straight to the receipts. She reads about the specific individuals, beginning with a burn victim from 2010. The L.A. Times article states that the burn victim received about $1 million of his $12 million settlement and the investigation and lawsuit includes both Tom and Erika, and numerous others, including the travel agent and accountant. So is the money hidden or gone? Sutton alleges, “They spent it.”
Kyle is struggling because she told Erika two weeks prior that she would be there for her. Kyle is going to be there for her if Erika is in a rough patch, but Kyle is struggling with the “different story” and whether or not she can be there for Erika if the news accounts are true. The ladies decide that they need a direct answer to “did Erika know?” and that the best place for that discussion is at Kyle’s house for a Christmas dinner. Kyle says in her production interview, “I feel like I am the grinch who is about to steal Erika’s Christmas.” The ladies want her to answer the tough questions. Erika’s attorneys must not know that she’s going to this dinner!
Garcelle is making a festive Haitian family dinner in honor of her cultural roots. Her son, Oliver, and Oliver’s wife, Sam, are there along with the grandchildren and Garcelle’s two sons. Garcelle has such a beautiful family. More this. Less scandal.
The women are getting ready for holiday dinner at Kyle’s house. Kyle tells Dorit that Teddi Mellencamp Arroyave is going to be there. Kyle is hosting dinner, but the rest of her family is already in Colorado. Kyle tells Garcelle that everyone is coming to the dinner, including Erika. Lisa and her new hair, Heather, arrives. Dorit can’t figure out the door to get into the house. Kathy Hilton arrives and says she’s discombobulated. “I’m trying to put 10 pounds in a 5-pound bag.” Literal? Not literal? Kathy says she’s ready to “have a gorilla.” Kathy says it’s like having a dramatic moment. Crystal is happy to see Teddi. They’ve been friends for 10 years. Everyone has arrived except Erika, and just before Erika shows up, Lisa reminds everyone that Erika might not be able to answer every question because of the legal cases. There are many awkward hellos and looks. Erika tells Kyle, “Thank you for having me. Are you kidding me? I’m a little radioactive these days.”
As Kyle checks on dinner, the rest of the women try to figure out what to talk about. Garcelle is avoiding talking to Erika since their last encounter in La Quinta when Erika flipped out. The women sit down to dinner. As they start to discuss Erika’s situation, Erika says, “I’m so tired. I’m so overwhelmed with everything that happens day-to-day.” Dorit says, “You must be blindsided by everything that comes out.” Erika doesn’t respond to that. In response, Erika says, “Yeah, there’s um, and there’s more coming.” Sutton goes straight in and asks, “Are you really blindsided?” Sutton says that they all read the L.A. Times article, and the timelines are confusing. Crystal says that she was so sad about Tom, given her own father’s struggle with Alzheimer’s, but then Crystal’s question is about the things that happened prior to the three-year timeline that Erika is holding onto.
Erika says, “I know what I’ve seen in the last three and a half, almost four years.” Sutton interrupts to say that the burn victim case was almost ten years ago. Erika starts to back off of making any statements. Dorit says that she understands Erika not wanting to talk about it. Then Garcelle says, “That’s not what you said the other night.” Dorit tells Erika that they all met without her to talk about her. Dorit threw Sutton under the bus by saying, “Sutton had asked for us to get together.” Erika thinks they met like a committee to determine whether they support her or not.
Sutton admits that she talked to an attorney about the situation. Then Erika says, “You talked to an attorney about me?” Garcelle says, “I don’t think she’s the only one actually who did that.” Then Erika wants to know who at the table got a legal opinion. Dorit admits to asking P.K. Kyle admits to asking Faye Resnick’s husband. Sutton says she’s worried about her reputation. Then Erika asks, “Are you really that afraid of me?”
Sutton goes full in and asks, “Why does the paper say that $20 million went into your LLC?” Kyle asks very directly, “Did you know any of this?” Erika says, “No, I did not.” Erika does say that she was kept away from “the books” even at her own LLC. Erika says, “No one knows the answer but him.” Lisa asks, “Where does $80 million go?” Erika says that’s a question only Tom can answer.
Sutton is disappointed that Dorit is riding the fence and not being completely honest about how she feels. Garcelle is frustrated by Dorit as well. Teddi says that she’s going to believe Erika didn’t know unless there is proof to the contrary. Sutton asks if Erika has had any discussions with lawyers about how to navigate through this. Erika says, “No.” Now Dorit wants everyone to stop asking these kinds of questions.
Garcelle says, “I’m going to be 100% honest as I normally am. I don’t know if you knew or not.” Then Garcelle recounts that her sister had a lawsuit that took a long time to pay a settlement. “If what Tom did is absolutely true, then f- Tom because I know personally what it feels like for someone who’s waiting for their compensation for something they went through…” And Erika interrupts to say that Tom will have to pay a price if what’s alleged is true. Erika goes on to blame diminished capacity and then says, “If he stole the money, I’d like to know where it is.” Erika gives everyone a choice to stay close to her or far away.
Kyle diverts attention by pulling everyone to another room for dessert. Sutton pulls Dorit aside to ask her, “Did you throw me under the bus a little bit tonight?” Dorit doesn’t think so. Erika took her leave and Sutton gave her a Christmas gift. Erika leaves the event saying, “You can smell the cowards a mile away.”
Next time, Kathy and Kyle spar about the TV Show Kyle did about their family that caused a rift between the sisters for a few years. Lisa hosts a luncheon to launch Rinna Beauty. Erika and Sutton go another round or two, and Dorit thinks Garcelle is making jabs at her and calls Garcelle a bully.