Sonja has invited Aviva and her future step mother, Cody, to the townhouse to try to find out if Cody’s intentions for George are pure, like that matters. While Cody bedazzles Sonja’s nails with Swarovski crystals, the other women ask her about George’s sexual proclivities. Cody tells them that his appetite and talent for sex is rather good and that he “knows” a woman. She also lets them know that George doesn’t want her to have children until she’s 35 years old and, to make sure they can make that happened even if he’s no longer around, they’re freezing his sperm. Cody loves George, doesn’t want his money – she runs some very successful nail salons in Florida and has plenty of money of her own – and Aviva and Sonja believe her.
Kristen, LuAnn, Carole, Heather and Sonja are trying on hats for a trip to the Saratoga Race Track. Aviva and Ramona won’t be going due to some prior arrangements with their respective children – something about camp and Avery going off to college. LuAnn tries one hat on, which doesn’t really fit her and Sonja points out that LuAnn has a head the size of a pumpkin. She also says that her own is the size of the pin, but we’ve already figured that out.
Aviva is having an engagement party for her father and Cody at, where else, the Museum of Sex. All of the ladies are there with their husbands, including Ramona, Mario and Ramona’s “gay husband”. Mario starts to chase Ramona around with a crop while she runs around the place. Carole notes that she had to be at this party; “George getting engaged is like a total eclipse of the sun. You have to look at it even though you know it’s going to hurt your eyes”. George arrives with Cody and is introduced to Kristen. Within moments, George has his hands on her ass and her boobs. She giggles and runs off, because that’s what any of us would do, especially after having gotten warnings in advance about him. He also offered to lick her nipples.
George then heads straight for Ramona and Mario pretends to punch at him while telling him to “keep your rabid hands off my wife”. Mario is definitely playing the dutiful husband for the cameras. Carole stops by for an exchange with George about his favorite topics. too. While George is otherwise occupied, Ramona, failing to have received the “all clear” from Aviva and Sonja, begins to question Cody about her future husband. She wants to know if Cody had her engagement ring appraised and then asks her why she’s marrying George. Cody says that it’s for his intellect and the good sex. Ramona then wonders about Cody’s deceased parents and how they would feel about the situation. Cody begins to cry and heads for the ladies’ room with Aviva in tow. When she rejoins the guests, Cody tells them about Ramona’s inquiries. Carole tells them that she ordered plastic glasses, just in case Ramona went Ramonacoaster.
George also hears about Ramona and that Cody was crying and begins to shout “Where is the bitch?” Ramona is making her exit, though, realizing that she’s opened her mouth a little too wide again. George then says “Ramona is a bitch. You know what happens to bitches? They get f***ed like dogs.” He then calls her a coward for leaving. Aviva manages to get things under control, the men pull themselves away from a display of photographs depicting apes and chimps in the throes of passions and offers a toast to the lovebirds. She talks about being happy and in love and assures them that he mother is looking down and is happy for them. She ends her words by joking how Sonja backed into her father’s erection. It’s just the perfect party with a swell bunch of folks.
LuAnn and Sonja meet in the park for a bike ride and a picnic. While eating, they discuss their concerns over Ramona. LuAnn can’t understand how Sonja could value her friendship with Ramona more than she does with her. LuAnn says that a friendship shouldn’t be labor intensive and that something wrong with Ramona. She also says that Ramona is more fun when she’s off the Ramonacoaster. For one brief moment, I admired LuAnn for not spilling the rumors about Ramona and Marion, a favor Ramona has never offered in return.
Ramona goes to Aviva’s fake house with flowers to offer an apology for ruining another party. The apology lingers in the air for about a nanosecond before Ramona starts to voice her concerns about a young, vulnerable woman falling into the hands of a lecherous, predatory old man. On cue, George enters the scene and he also apologizes for causing a scene at Ramona’s charity event. He tells her that you can cause bliss or bleak and he caused bleak. Ramona begins to tell George that, if he loves Cody, he should let her go. He should let the young girl live her life like she should, unencumbered by a much older man. Ramona says that she would be broken-hearted if Avery found a lecherous man like George. This angers George and he makes the conversation about race – black versus white. Ramona responds by comparing him to a pedophile. This is all going so well, that George just calls Ramona a racist and makes a lewd suggestion for something he’d like to do to her involving his fingers.
LuAnn has rented a house in Saratoga for the ladies. Sonja, who seems to think she’s in Louisville, wants some mint juleps. The ladies put on their dresses and hats and head for the track for the day. Sonja is in her element, having grown up nearby, and begins to talk about the smell of money, the beauty of the clothes and hats, and almost breaks into a rendition of “My Old Kentucky Home.” She spots the winning jockey of the 2013 Kentucky Derby, Joel Rosario and calls him over. He tells the ladies how wonderful it was to win and makes his escape before Sonja asks him for riding lessons. Carole tells the women that the height of a man and the size of his penis are correlated in inverse proportions. She knows this only because she’s dated a lot of short guys.
Having studied their tip sheets, the ladies are ready to place their bets. They’ve put their money on horses and are betting trifectas and perfectas. Sonja, who knows all about the track, is placing two dollar bets on all of the horses in every combination available known to man. Carole points out that, even if Sonja wins, the money she gets won’t cover her bets. The ladies win and Sonja doesn’t. They collect $3,340, making their individual winnings slightly over $800. While they celebrate, Sonja wanders off to try to
pick up talk to some trainer, jockey or owner. When the time comes for the group to leave, Sonja is nowhere to be found. Even LuAnn’s texts to her went unanswered.
They’re back at the house, having decided that Sonja will find her way there eventually and begin to get dressed to go out on the town. Sonja barges in, slamming the door and charges right past the others, shouting “They always do this. Bitches.” Heather follows her to find out what’s wrong and Sonja goes into a rant about how no one cares where she was. Realizing that Sonja is just drunker than a skunk, she leave her alone and goes back downstairs. Kristen also attempts to console Sonja over who knows what but her attempt doesn’t work out much better. Sonja just tells Kristen to go f**k herself. Kristen apparently doesn’t understand that you can’t reason with someone who’s drunk. She also gives up and joins the others, while also doing an improv as to how Sonja looks and sounds. LuAnn wonders aloud whether she should try but Heather tells her that there’s no sense in babying her. That leaves Sonja to lodge her complaints and make her argument to her own reflection in the mirror. The two Sonjas then decide that they should pack their bags and head back to the Hamptons. Given the previews, it looks like Sonja doesn’t have the same friends with airplanes as Ramona does and is stuck in Saratoga Springs for the remainder of the trip. Carole called her a WMD – woman of mass destruction. I think there’s more than one.
S1E1 “My Fair Ladies of London”
By Hydrangea Hussy
“This is the big league, this is London.” It’s finally here! I have been counting down the days until Bravo’s look into London society. As Caroline says, “other countries you can buy your way into society, it’s just England isn’t like that.” Here we go!
We begin with Caroline Stanbury. She lives on the Wentworth estate, near Brad & Angelina. She doesn’t know how many bedrooms the house has. I am loving that she makes no apology for her success. We also learn that she’s also a member of the Vestey family, which has a net worth of over $1 billion. Caroline has been married for 11 years & has 3 kids. She runs The Gift Library, a luxury store which caters to the rich & famous. Caroline doesn’t mince words & expects perfection from her employees. I’m sure that her family connections have helped in her career, but it’s clear that she works really hard to make her company a success.
We meet Caprice on a photo shoot. She grew up in California but has lived in England for 17 years. She started her career as a model/sex symbol. She makes no bones about her success – “I would look at a camera & make $15k every 10 minutes.” She has transitioned successfully from model to businesswoman. Caprice now owns a very successful swimwear & lingerie line, By Caprice. I check out her website & the swimwear is really cute! It’s also reasonably priced, which is nice! She & Caroline are old friends. Caroline says that she’s “as accepted as any American could be.” Caprice says that Caroline is more American than her. She’s also pregnant with her first child, so I’m sure that will be large portion of her storyline. The look of pure joy on her face when she saw the ultrasound was so touching!
Annabelle may be the most low-key of the ladies. She was born into the aristocracy, but is pretty ambivalent about it. She was a model & muse for Alexander McQueen for many years. She’s still trying to deal with his death. I can’t imagine how hard it would be to lose your best friend. The pain is clearly visible when she talks about him. Caprice tells us that Annabelle has kind of retreated from society since Alexander’s death. Annabelle has been riding horses since she was young, but it’s been awhile since she’s trained. She is currently training for a race that that will raise money for a school in Ethiopia. Training begins on a dummy horse so she can focus on her form without worrying about falling from a horse at almost 40 mph. I wanted to be a jockey when I was young, but I’m sure that I would have chickened out as soon as I started going that fast!
Next up is Noelle. She’s from Seattle & traveled the world as a model before settling in London. She visited an ex-fiancé in London & never left. Juliet comments that Noelle’s version of a fiancé is one with a lot of money. Her ex is very wealthy & her current fiancé is rumored to be very wealthy. He’s going through a nasty divorce & is being accused of hiding his wealth. Scot proposed within months of meeting Noelle, but they can’t marry until his divorce is final. I have a feeling this divorce is going to over-shadow Noelle’s entire time on the show. I have to appreciate Noelle’s ambition & the fact that she wants to gain some power in the London social scene. I’m not sure what to think of her relationship at this point. She says that, if he can’t get his divorce sorted out, she won’t wait around forever.
Noelle meets Caprice for lunch. Noelle wants some advice from Caprice on surviving & thriving in London. She admires how far Caprice has come. Caprice tells her that England is still very much a man’s world & that it can be hard for good-looking women. Noelle feels that her business success is over-shadowed by Scot’s divorce drama. Caprice is very honest with Noelle, telling her that she’s heard some not so great things about Noelle & that, in England, people don’t forget a scandal easily. Caprice knows that Scot is in love with Noelle. Caprice sees a lot of herself in Noelle & wants to help the younger American. Caprice seems to be taking on a maternal, caring role. It’s obvious that she really cares about her friends & will do anything to help them.
Marissa has been in London for 5 years with her husband. People weren’t interested in her until they learned that her husband owns a very exclusive club. She doesn’t seem to take that too seriously though, which is refreshing. The couple has one child. We first see them having a picnic in the park. I’m going to have to get used to the language – took me a minute to figure out that “hamper” is “picnic basket,” lol! Marissa is getting her British citizenship & committing herself to their life in London. I think it’s really sweet that she has so embraced her new life!
Juliet is going to be the stereo-typical American – loud & brash. She moved to London 3 years ago with her husband. They live south of the river, which she says isn’t the most desirable area but she loves it. She was friends with celebrities in the US, but that’s irrelevant in London. People are more impressed if you know royalty than celebrities. Marissa kind of took Juliet in when she moved to London. She’s teaching Juliet how to adapt to the change in culture. They have tea at Marissa’s before they go out for tea. I would love so many opportunities for tea!
The topic of conversation is Noelle & Scot, who were just in the paper. Noelle is living with a friend, rather than Scot. Juliet notes that it’s a bad situation for everyone, most importantly Noelle. Apparently Scot just got out of jail. There was a court order requiring him to reveal business dealings of ex-colleagues & he wasn’t able to do that, so he went to jail. Juliet is concerned because she doesn’t want to be too connected to that kind of scandal. Noelle meets up with them for tea. Juliet immediately questions Noelle about Scot. Way to give her a second to sit down! Noelle can’t get a word in edgewise & doesn’t really want to talk about it, but Juliet just keeps going. Marissa just seems uncomfortable. She seems to really understand how hard it is on Noelle to be in love with someone, but have it been so complicated. I’m sure that she has other things going on in her life & I feel bad that her life has been overtaken by her fiancé’s issues.
It’s the start of the London social season – Polo in the Park. All of the girls are going. Caroline’s make-up artist is getting her ready. Lucky girl! Anyone can go to Polo in the Park, but there’s different areas for different social classes – like the Royal Box. Caroline loves the pomp & circumstance of British society. I have to admit that I’d enjoy it too. Caprice explains that the Polo begins the summer season, which continues through July, then everyone goes holiday.
There are 2 groups of girls going to the Polo – the Brits + Caprice, & the Americans. Caprice tells the girls that Noelle will be at the Polo. The recognize Scot’s name from the tabloids. Caprice tells us that the British press can be more harsh than the American press. I can’t imagine anything more harsh than some of our tabloids! She tells Annabelle & Caroline that she likes Noelle, giving her stamp of approval to the younger American. She feels that Noelle’s situation is difficult, but understands that it’s part of the game.
Noelle is the only one wearing a fascinator. The Brits agree that you never wear a hat to the Polo. I have a feeling this will come up later! Juliet notices that Polo is different than American sports – no yelling or signs or cheesy foam fingers. The American enter the tent/fenced off area. It’s like a private suite in a stadium. Caprice is the one who connects all of the girls together. The look on Annabelle’s face is priceless – the Americans are slightly overdressed. Marissa compliments Caroline on a piece in the paper. Caroline feels like Americans are constantly fawning over her. Caroline recognizes Marissa’s bag from her website.
The conversation turns to Noelle’s hat. Caroline tells her “you look so smart” & that her outfit is wasted on the Polo. Caroline tells her that she needs to be transported to Ascot. Which Marissa describes as “a posh put-down.” Ascot horse races require a hat. You can tell that Caroline thinks Noelle is trying too hard. In her TH, Caroline says that Noelle looks out of place. No one seems too interested in the game. Caprice explains that it’s really about the drinking & socializing. She & Annabelle relax in the sun, while the other girls watch the game. Juliet is cheering loudly. Annabelle describes Juliet as a yappy terrier. I have to admit, if I’d seen a million polo matches, I’d be more interested in the cocktails too. But, I like the Americans’ enthusiasm.