After an exhausting season of the Real Housewives of New York (and even more exhaustive reunion — that was only part one, people! There are two more to go…) no wonder Bethenny Frankel is getting the hell out of the Upper East Side. She’s taken a page from Ramona’s year of renewal and is preparing for the major milestones in her life – having a baby, getting married, expanding her business — all of which the Bravo cameras have captured on her new show Bethenny Getting Married?
While Bethenny is likable — she’s refreshingly blunt about herself and others — after watching this episode following part one of the reunion, it was difficult to stomach an entire hour of The Bethenny Show, especially considering the accusations she had slung at Jill: “The fame thing took you over.” Bethenny, you’re starring in your OWN reality show. Hello pot? You’re black.
But ’tis neither here nor there, PopWatchers, because at least for this one hour, we were relatively drama free! Ah, doesn’t everyone feel renewed? Welcome to Tribeca, where new roomies Bethenny and Jason (who looks even more attractive these days, no?) were working our their differences; Jason likes to be around people, Bethenny can be a self-proclaimed curmudgeon, Bethenny wants to keep the wedding small, Jason is a suppressed Bridezilla with a guest list upwards of 80 people, Bethenny only wants to have one child, Jason plans to sabotage baby number one’s sex to make room for number two, Bethenny does not want Jason anywhere near the gross realities of the delivery room, while Jason thinks giving birth is beautiful. The Felix and Oscar dynamic was entertaining enough, however at times I found myself thinking “Jason, why are you taking this from her?” But then I realized she is pregnant, and pregnant ladies get a free pass, just like second semester seniors and Chinese gymnasts (thank you, Blair Waldorf). So if she wants to have icing for breakfast Jason, by Jesus let her have some!
To help with all of her Skinny Girl endeavors, impending wedding plans and baby preparations, Bethenny looked to hire a new assistant. Jason disapproved of her hiring a male assistant who wasn’t gay, in fear that he would be interested in his fiancé. “What 24-year-old guy wants to hit this?” Bethenny unapologetically asked, belly protruding far past her waistband. He told her she was beautiful, but she hired a straight assistant anyway (Max, a punt returner from Syracuse who ultimately wins Jason over with a fist pound), despite vibing with my first choice, Nicholas. The way that Bethenny and the “Napoleon Dyanmite” candidate talked to each other about falafel reminded me of Pam and Kevin’s newfound friendship during her own pregnancy on The Office. In the words of Ms. Frankel, to a pregnant woman “food is porn.” Apparently 22-year-old men would agree.
Jason’s one request was a housewarming party with all of their friends (read: Jason’s friends). Though she was hesitant, Bethenny obliged, and recruited the help of her assistants for all the specifics. Businessman Jason had to travel to Orlando for a meeting ON THE DAY OF THE HOUSEWARMING PARTY but promised he’ll be back in time. Then…Snowpacalypse ’10 (never forget). With Jason’s flight delayed, Bethanny was forced to play hostess to his friends. She complained to new assistant Max (after soliciting a compliment from him by using my new favorite line, “If you’re straight you should be noticing…”). The night carried on without Jason, and we met his Best Man Riccio, who sweetly put up with Bethenny’s self-indulgent behavior (“and sometimes I don’t come from a place of guests.”) and just sat quietly on the couch. And look, Alex and Simon! Our favorite outer borough couple stopped by and terrified Bethenny with stories about how parenthood sucks your brain dry.
In the premiere episode, we met Bethenny’s first assistant Julie, as well as her friends Connie and Lauren, a fellow preggo who strongly resembles Kim from Real Housewives of Atlanta and Lauri from Real Housewives of Orange County. It’s refreshing to meet a group of people who are most likely seeing and spending much more time with Bethenny than the other housewives, whose only real connection with one another rests in their Bravo contracts. But dare I ask, will we be seeing Jill Zarin? I’ll be taking bets for the finale…
The reason Bethenny Getting Married? will not wear your nerves thin is because it’s all about Bethenny. Real Housewives of New York consists of a group of women stuck in high school mentality, and there are plenty of those out there, but it really took a turn for the worse after season one. When each cast member became aware of the reality of their own reality show, the drama moved from real friendship troubles to accusations of planting stories in the gossip columns. Despite all of her business ventures and publicity, the most interesting parts of Bethenny Getting Married? are her interactions with Jason and her friends. She’s a funny woman, with an interesting way of life, and I’d rather watch someone’s unique take on normality, than a banal and boring take on things I can’t relate to.
What did you think PopWatchers? Do any other Housewives deserve their own show?