Bravo TV, Reality TV

#RHOBH Recap: Runways, Recourse & Regurgitation (Season 8 Finale)

In a season of aspirational living rather than actual events, the tiresomely affluent ladies of Beverly Hills presented us with a finale to regurgitate all the mini “dramas.”

Dorit learned – at her beachwear runway show -that the Beverly Hills Lifestyle feature isn’t coming to fruition. This is recourse for her constant kvetching that the photos stunk. But to learn this news at one’s big event is emblematic of being on high and getting a severe humbling. Add to that Kyle’s attack on Dorit at the same event, Dorit’s Event! as Dorit reminds Kyle. This is the second time Dorit feels slighted in this manner. However, who can blame Kyle for thinking it’s pretty crappy of Dorit to rewrite Herstory by giving Kyle a villainous role in #PantyGate?

On that note, I must say I felt a kinship with Kyle who refuses (consistently — because I noticed it last episode too) to say the grotesque P word. She refers to the garment as underwear. We have something in common. As I suggested, this retired argument should be labeled #GrannyPants at this point (Sigh).

While Dorit has the models prance around looking lovely in her Beverly Beach suits, real people with an actual iota of flesh on bone deem them impractical. This is why Erika remarks from the first row: “These would look great on Lisa Rinna” and under her breath “And only Rinna.”

I’ll pause here to say: Thank God Dorit is on this reality show. Why? Because without RHOBH, Dorit would not have met LVP, a matriarchal figure who perpetually has put Dorit in her place this season. Without LVP, can you imagine how much BIGGER Dorit’s expansive ego would be. There’s still work to be done here…

Now, about LVP’s ego….hmm.

Kyle storms out of the event after feeling that Erika hasn’t backed up her gripes about the “underwear” drama with Dorit. In a testimonial, Teddi remarks that Erika’s silent stoicism is equally irksome to her earlier temperamental outbursts.

Mauricio is seen gabbing with Edwin about implementing a top-notch security system for the new mansion. This was cobbled together by editors who scoured the cutting room floor looking for inconsequential footage they never dreamed would become useful. Fast forward a few months and Kyle and Mauricio’s home is burgled with sentimental items stolen.

Other things that have happened since filming wrapped:

Erika’s book is number 9 on the New York Times bestsellers list even though the Pretty Mess remains pretty buttoned up about her past. That’s the most common review I’ve gotten about the memoir.

Kyle’s American Woman is a show you can watch now, I think. However, if you’re the diehard Clueless fan that I am, you’ll want to preserve memories of Alicia Silverstone in her most iconic days.

Dorit is still truly, madly deeply in love with PK and…of course, vis versa. Neither of them will ever let you forget it. Viewers are wondering if we’d have heard more about Beverly Beach if she’d kept the original name, Navah.

LVP requested that editors sneak in a subliminal message to Pandora in the credits. She’d really like to have some grandchildren. For now, plans to adopt more dogs are on hold…even canines that look like her husband Ken.

Lisa Rinna has been wracking her brain like mad (as we saw during the scene with Jonathan Antin and Lisa’s husband Harry Hamlin), wondering how detrimental her good behavior has been to her future on this franchise.

Teddi has been reassuring Rinna: “Look, Meghan McCain didn’t call YOU boring, you’re good.” Despite that, Teddi was the only accountable, measured voice of reason this season and she’ll be getting another….

Mark my words.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bravo TV, Reality TV

#RHOP: Monique Samuels Launches ‘Not For Lazy Moms’ Parenting Site

Monique Samuels stars on Real Housewives of Potomac which is returning to Bravo this month. Despite her lavish lifestyle (and multiple luxurious homes), she says that her Jersey-based extended family has kept her rooted and down to earth. Monique’s dad made sure she wasn’t out driving until she learned to change a tire and check under the hood of a car and life was not always as glamorous for Monique as it is today. She values a good work ethic, managing her husband’s real estate investment company. First and foremost, she is a mom to two young kids and that is her primary focus. Being married to Chris Samuels, a six-time Pro Bowl left tackle who played for the Washington Redskins, hasn’t caused her to lose sight of the importance of hands-on parenting. Currently nanny-less while her kids are in school programs, she has always felt that it’s important to not have anyone else raising her children. When things were busier and the kids were not yet in pre-school, she had help, but describes the arrangement as follows: “We collaborated. When she (the nanny) was doing laundry, I would do things with the kids. You work together so the kids definitely get quality time with their mom!”

Real Mr. Housewife
Chris and Monique Samuels

When Monique’s son was fussy due to allergies, it made her search for some natural remedies in addition to running to her pediatrician. “I’m not a naturopath,” she explains, “But I do like to find what will keep me from reaching for Motrin, if that’s possible. I like to find the essential oils that can give some relief.I’m very big on essential oils.” Monique just launched the parenting lifestyle website Not For Lazy Moms at the insistence of friends who appreciated her insight and advice.

Bravo TV

“My friends would ask me about some natural remedies and I would be researching and making these suggestions and they said ‘You really need to start a website where you share this with others.” I urge people first to go to the pediatrician! But it doesn’t hurt to do your research and complement that with natural remedies so you can potentially lessen the number of sick visits.” Not For Lazy Moms began as a Facebook group. Monique would also record videos and the NFLM site went live on October 30th.

Although brand new, some early 5 star reviews are in because Monique initially brought this concept to the Not For Lazy Moms Facebook group she created:

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Not For Lazy Moms is not only about health and wellness though. It also encompasses other areas of parenting and encourages moms – “not Perfect Patties” as Monique says – to be candid about struggles and ways to overcome them.

Regarding the title of the site, “What mom is lazy?! I don’t think ANY mom is lazy,” stresses Monique, “I want to be clear that the name is pure snark. Wracking our brains to figure out what’s good for our kids, what’s beneficial for our marriages and how to spice things up as couples…Those are all things we deal with. That was my impetus for starting Not For Lazy Moms. I’ve learned how to get my kids to get to bed by 8 pm so my husband and I can enjoy some time to ourselves after. It’s not always about going out, some times it’s just enjoying some wine or a cigar – on occasion and having ‘date night’ at home.”

thepicta.com

“I know this is not easy for parents in general. You should come in and smell our home! We use essential oils and We have a diffuser going…I rub some essential oils on my kids feet before going into bed. My husband and I do the same. We all have to work hard to figure out the routines and learn what’s effective so we can be in bed peacefully by a certain time and having things running smoothly in our lives. I really want this website to be a place to hear from other mothers, for moms to exchange ideas and discuss what works, for moms to ask questions and get answers. My friend Valerie is actually a matchmaker who contributes to the site and will give parents great ideas on keeping the spark, something parents of really young kids and babies can forget to prioritize or struggle with.”

Not For Lazy Moms Facebook Group

 

Monique has been very busy lately recording televised morning segments that provide tips to moms. She is also working on developing a podcast (that will also likely be titled Not For Lazy Moms). When I ask her if other cast members from Real Housewives Of Potomac will be involved with the website, she says that anything is possible further down the line. However, this is not about Bravo. It’s about helping moms connect with other relatable, everyday moms.

 

“Whether you want a recipe for homemade play dough that you can make with your kids, or date night ideas for you and your significant other, I want this to be a place where moms go for excellent ideas! We are also interested in having other moms be contributors. There is a tab on the site for that. I love interacting with people and sharing some of my thoughts and the things I’ve learned from real life, hands-on experience.”

You can check out Monique’s website at: www.NotForLazyMoms.com or follow her on Twitter @https://twitter.com/iammrssamuels.

(This article previously ran in my Huffington Post Contributor archive)

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Podcasts

Grant’s Rants: Reality TV Perspectives Include his Hilarious Granny’s

grants rants logo

When Margaret Josephs of The Real Housewives of New Jersey (RHONJ) mentioned she was listening to Grant’s Rants, my curiosity was piqued. I’m always down for a Bravo show recap and I thought “Grant’s Rants” (full title: Grant’s Rants Hollywood Talk) sounded like an interesting name for a podcast. I started out listening for the host Grant Rutter’s thoughts on the reality TV shows I was watching and quickly found his Rhode Island accent intriguing, along with his shrewd commentary on things that don’t necessarily strike the eye of the viewer.

Then I came upon an episode with Granny June. Grant’s Granny reminds me of my own Nana, who, sadly, passed away before The Real Housewives franchise began, but who would have had some incredibly humorous takes. She is unabashed about sharing her blunt observations on grown women wearing pigtails or making a ridiculous ritual of multiple air kisses. Although I had a particular affinity for the episodes featuring this spitfire grandmother, comedians and pop culture enthusiasts have also lent their expertise. In addition, Margaret Josephs (the “Housewife” to recommend the podcast to me) and Danielle Staub of RHONJ were recent guests who provided tantalizing inside scoop and answered questions many had wondered about.

grant and granny june

Grant and Granny June

marge and danielle on grants rants

Here’s what Grant had to say about his podcast:

How It All Began

Grant’s Rants started in August of 2015. I was encouraged by the following I had generated when I was at AfterBuzzTV. In the beginning, I was surprised by people following me on Twitter, and positive comments I got online. I was used to people being destroyed in the comments, but many respected my opinionated views. I figured, there must be something to this podcasting thing. In my opinion, the YouTube space was over-saturated and Periscope was the big thing at the time. The work I saw coming off of Periscope was on the low end. I produced YouTube videos back in the early days and studied TV in school. Podcasts were the perfect platform to roll out a show and test for audience. I’m a long time podcast listener: I remember downloading podcasts off of my desktop computer and adding them to the my black iPod video! Podcasts like Daytime Confidential showed me that you can be a fan and have a perspective, and with a little insight you can legitimize yourself, but you have to be a fan first and always keep it real.

TV Talk Shows are an incredibly over produced medium, hosts read prepared note cards and are delivered every word or joke via prompter. When podcasting, you have to keep it real and be honest, and that’s why I think so many folks who want information or a genuine laugh find podcasts.

What Grant’s Rants is About

Grants Rants is a pop culture commentary experience, featuring a different guest co-host each week to chart the waters of that week’s latest news. It’s slanted towards reality TV but away from the Kardashians. I have one rule for the show, no Kardashian hot topics. You can get that information everywhere, we are here to cover what else is happening. Every co-host is connected to media or entertainment. This provides for an interesting commentary in the second half of the episode where we spotlight their career and the road to get there. I think people’s stories can be interesting. The thing about working in Hollywood is you can be working on a film set one year and the next you’re moving to Seattle to work in banking – the business takes many twists and turns and it’s interesting to see what keeps people hanging on and how dreams morph into career offshoots.

Guests and a Variety of Perspectives

My favorite guests are those who are on the same wavelength as me. Those people that just “get it”. Observant people are the best. I love to people watch. Grants Rants is all about commentary. It’s an escape from the headlines. I like to think if you look at a cover of US Weekly, Kim Kardashian will be on the cover announcing another pregnancy or something (who cares?), and we’ll talk about all the other stories surrounding that image – a Real Housewife divorce, Paris Hilton’s engagement, Britney’s tour, Scientology, etc. Guests who are game to talk about whatever and come to the table with an opinion are my kind of people. In the most recent episode, (#84) Comedian, Heather McMahan was my co-host. In addition to her being hilarious, she’s an old friend who just “gets it”. We have a certain chemistry that just bounces off of one another that is vital to a good show.

Granny June, my grandmother and my most guested guest is a favorite of listeners. She’s very plugged in to pop culture, reality TV and gossip. She also brings opinions to the table – she can’t stand Mama June and Honey Boo Boo, has no time for Roseanne Barr and can’t quit watching Dr. Phil. What’s great about having Granny on the podcast is that we are clearly very different demographics [I’m 28, she’s 88] but we both see what’s happening in entertainment and have our opinions. It also helps that she’s not afraid to give advice and yell certain Housewives on the show. One of my favorite bits of advice was Granny June telling Kyle Richards to sit down and stop having so many parties!

That’s the type of life advice you’ll get coming out of Grants Rants. The show has become an escape for many listeners, and something I plan to explore more in 2018 and the road the 100th episode this summer!

You can start listening to Grant’s Rants now by visiting: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/grants-rants-hollywood-talk/id1033690074?mt=2.

 

 

 

 

 

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Bravo TV, Reality TV

#PumpRules Tom Sandoval on Supporting Ariana Madix (AllAboutTRH.com)

Kate Casey, the host of Reality Life with Kate Casey podcast, sat down at a Hollywood bar to interview Tom Sandoval of Vanderpump Rules. In addition to discussing his acting and modeling past, the Saint Louis native disclosed how meeting cast mate Jax Taylor led him to the Vanderpump Rules family and how he never expected the show to be as big as it is. “I was trying to be a series regular on a show and I hadn’t really watched a lot of reality TV,” he conceded, “I didn’t want it to ruin my career before it took off. I was around the last person to sign the contract.”

To read more of this interview and Tom’s thoughts on Ariana’s insecurities this season, see my article at: http://www.allabouttrh.com/2018/02/27/vanderpump-rules-tom-sandoval-supporting-ariana-madix-understand-want-help-way-can/.

 

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Bravo TV, Reality TV

#PumpRules Ariana Madix on Anxiety, Faith’s Crush on Lala and Drama This Season (AllAboutTRH.com)

ariana madix

Vanderump Rules’ star Ariana Madix dropped by the studio of podcast host Danny Pellegrino and did not disappoint. She told the Everything Iconic host that she and former nemesis Kristen Doute are on good terms and provided some other behind-the-scenes revelations.

With regard to opening up about her body insecurities on camera recently, she said that producers had been discussing the possibility of filming her in therapy for the past three seasons. She felt that now the timing was right to finally address these insecurities. “It’s something my close friends all know about. Those struggles have always been there. I got to a point where Tom and I were going through these issues and I knew that people didn’t know the backstory behind any of it. They thought ‘she’s not into him’. I thought that instead of there being all this speculation, I would come out and say what’s going on.”

To read more of this interview, see the full article at http://www.allabouttrh.com/2018/02/26/vanderpump-rules-ariana-madix-anxiety-faiths-crush-lala-drama-season/.

 

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Bravo TV, Uncategorized

Vanderpump Rules’ Billie Lee: “It’s an Inspiring Story, But It’s Still My Truth”

This season on Vanderpump Rules, we were introduced to a woman who brings a charming candor about her private life and personal journey to a national audience. With matriarch Lisa Vanderpump as a known LGBTQ proponent, it is notable that the newest cast member Billie Lee is Vanderpump Rules’ first transgender cast member. In an interview with Danny Pellegrino for his podcast Everything Iconic, Billie Lee disclosed that viewers will get to see much more about her life and the anxieties she grapples with. She also spoke about how difficult it has been to open up about her journey and how she is adjusting to suddenly finding herself in the spotlight. To read more about Billie Lee’s interview with Danny Pellegrino, see my article on the website All About The Real Housewives (AllAboutTRH.com): http://www.allabouttrh.com/2018/02/21/vanderpump-rules-billie-lee-inspiring-story-still-truth/.

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Uncategorized, Bravo TV

Vanderpump Rules’ Lala Kent on Building Relationships, Exuding Confidence and Becoming an Entrepreneur (AllAboutTRH.com)

This season of Vanderpump Rules has been one about personal growth and maturity for Lala Kent who has made it clear that her female cast mates should be building one another up rather than tearing each other down. In an interview with Kate Casey of the eponymous podcast Reality Life with Kate Casey, Kent made it clear that she has regrets over any disparaging remarks she made to female cast mates in past seasons of the show. She is bringing her authentic “girl’s girl” persona to the current season, hoping to make up for past mistakes. To read more about this interview between Lala Kent and Kate Casey, read my article on the website All About the Real Housewives, AllAboutTRH.com: http://www.allabouttrh.com/2018/02/21/vanderpump-rules-lala-kent-building-relationships-exuding-confidence-becoming-entrepreneur/. 

 

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