Ashley Darby and Luke Gulbranson’s Relationship Labeled A ‘PR Stunt’ Amid Split
On December 20, Ashley posted a selfie with the Summer House star in his hometown of Minnesota. “The definition of a winter wonderland I didn’t know I missed snow so much!” Ashley began in the caption. “Thank you for showing me the beauty of Minnesota! ♥️ @lukegulbranson.”
Six days later, Instagram fan account, Queens of Bravo, pointed out that “Ashley has seemingly deleted or archived her post with Luke from her IG.” The post pushed fans to speculate that the pair have called it quits.
Other fans labeled their relationship a PR stunt.
“She was posting him, but he never posted her. It made me confused..” one fan wrote. Another fan noted that when Luke brings a girl home, they soon split. “Every time he take a girl there they end up breaking up with him.. What be going on lol.” A third fan assumed that Ashley’s estranged husband, Michael Darby, is the reason she hasn’t moved on.
“Maybe she isn’t ready… they still follow one another… she did say on the last show she still has feelings for Michael. Or maybe Michael threatened her with some divorce tactic since their divorce isn’t final (I don’t think)… either way, it’s really not our business… let’s just hope they are both happy!”
“They might be keeping it quiet and still seeing each other but let’s be honest do u reallllly think Luke wanted to sign up for all this baggage?” one fan wrote. Another fan assumed that Ashley’s new fling wasn’t a good look for her divorce case against Michael, saying, “Can’t we just go with that she had to delete because of the divorce proceedings??? Like maybe it didn’t look good??? I wanna believe that they are just on the downlow!!”
A third fan broke down their own theory. “My theories- 1) she deleted the post and decided to not be so public about it bc of the divorce, or 2) they felt like they were moving too fast and she’s not ready for that/he’s not ready to be step daddy.” And another added, “3) it was all a PR stunt.”
As reported, Ashley and Luke first sparked dating rumors when they were spotted flirting at BravoCon back in October. It was the first time the two physically met after Andy Cohen said that he would honor a fan’s request to hook them up. In an interview with People, Luke described his first meeting with Ashley.
”We had a nice chat, and I look forward to chatting more throughout the weekend,” he said. During a Real Housewives of Potomac panel, Ashley explained, “Turns out we have a lot of common interests. We both like horseback riding and hiking and all that crunchy sh*t.” She added, “A girl doesn’t kiss and tell. Can I plead the Fifth?”
The couple was spotted again in DC at a Washington Capitals game at Capital One Arena. The following day, the pair went to a Washington Commanders game at Maryland’s FedEx Field where they were joined by Summer House couple, Lindsay Hubbard and Carl Radke. The duo looked good together as they posed for a couple of photos.
In an appearance on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, Luke opened up about his relationship with the mom of two. “In the evening, when we have some free time, we tend to chat a little bit,” he said. “We’re getting to know each other. I mean, she’s down there [in the greater Washington, D.C. area], I’m up here [in New York City]. You gotta spend time doing that.”
Luke also pointed out the RHOP star’s best qualities. ”She’s tons of fun and outgoing. She has a great smile.” Ashley‘s followers were happy to see that she moved on to Luke and even labeled him an upgrade from Michael.
“Okay he brought her to Minnesota! That’s Luke’s first base!” one fan said. Another added, “Definitely the boyfriend she don liked all of his posts i’m happy that she’s happy tho!”
A third fan said about the two, “Imagine going from Michael Darby to Luke. Talk about upgrading. I’m happy for Ashley and Luke!”
Ashlee Nicole is a Senior Editor at All About The Tea, who specializes in content curation. Born and formed in New Orleans, LA, Ashlee is an absolute music junkie and self-proclaimed foodie who loves all things music, entertainment, and culture.