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Real Housewives of New Jersey: They’re Baaack!

by Ilana Angel

July 13, 2014 | 6:07 pm

Tonight's typos are generously sponsored by Merlot.

The ladies of New Jersey have been gone a long time and return tonight with a lot of changes. Kathy is out. I for one could not be happier. You know she didn’t want to go, but in the end she was simply not interesting. Couple that with how repulsive her husband is and a celebration of her departure is in order. Jacqueline is out. She is lovely but stupid.  Another season of commercials for Autism, while informative and important, would have been too much.

They are replaced by twins Teresa and Nicole. I didn’t like them in the season sneak peek so it will be interesting to see if they get more appealing or annoying. Also out is Caroline, who stayed about three years longer than she should have.  I like Caroline but she became unwatchable, mostly because of her kids, and I am glad she’s gone. The biggest cast shake up is the return of Dina Manzo. She was a star season one so we’ll see how she is received now.

The final new girl is Amber, and again with this one I did not like her in the sneak peek. We were all so excited to have the dead weight gone but I think we’ll be wanting them back and the new chicks out before the season ends. I am keeping an open mind, going in trying to give everyone a fair shot, and with a large supply of booze ready to go. The ladies of New Jersey may drive me to drink. By may of course I mean I am drinking right now. It’s on.

Sidebar: Has anyone seen the desperate begging of Danielle Staub to come back? She is writing about how she had a family meeting with her daughters and they agreed they should come back and show who they really are. Oy vey. The woman is good TV but her 15 minutes was up years ago and she needs to move on. I don’t deny that people tried to hurt her, but coming back will not be good for her or fair to us. We are done with Danielle adn she needs to be quiet now.

The season starts with a recap of the legal troubles of Teresa and Juicy. I don’t understand why Apollo from RHOA got sentenced so quickly for breaking the law, and a year after the indictments, Teresa and Joe are still waiting. Something is not kosher in New Jersey. Melissa and Joe are watching the news and promising to support her. Melissa is a liar but we see her call Teresa while Tre talks in front of Gia, which is sad.

I get that it is a reality show and cameras are everywhere. I get that Gia knows what is going on in her family, but to have her on the show discussing the legal trouble of her parents is not cool. It breaks my heart that this young woman is crying on TV in the same way it breaks my heart to watch Teresa cry while comforting her. Teresa loves her children and I love Teresa, but this is wrong to me on a lot of different levels.

The show then cuts to three months earlier. Teresa’s girls have grown up and are all beautiful. Milania is a superstar. Dina is over for a visit and let’s just take a moment to say that this woman is stunning. Dear Lord she is pretty. She is still not talking to Caroline, which explains why she is there and Caroline is not. Teresa tells Dina she is stressed about money because what she was saving for her kids is going to legal fees.

Teresa is putting on a brave face. Dina explains she is separated from her husband and implies there were lines being crossed but does not come out and say infidelity. We don’t know Tommy so it makes no difference to the show. We're invested in her not him. I am glad Dina is back and having her with Teresa is like the good old days when this show was fun and funny. The good times ended with Melissa.

Melissa is back and looking beautiful. She is hanging out with Teresa and the girls at gymnastics. It is fun to see Antonia and Milania together. Melissa is still happily married to Joe, and says how happy she is. Her kids are beautiful and Gino is giving Milania a run for her money in the best reality TV kid. Melissa uses the visit as an opportunity to introduce new girl Amber. 10 minutes in and we're scripted.

We meet Amber. She was friends with Melissa when they were young and not married. She is having a party and invited Melissa, who invited Teresa, who invited Dina. She is married with 2 kids and two stepsons. Amber thinks you can only be a good parent if there are two parents in the home. Okay. She also says she has four kids when she has two, and her husband has four. Yup, she’s on my nerves after 1 minute.

Amber has a Masters Degree and lets us know Melissa chose to marry money over an education. Back to Dina, she is on a spiritual journey and has found enlightenment, but still struggles. She has not filed for divorce, still sleeps with her husband, and is afraid to cut ties because she is worried about starting over. She is scared to date, scared to become a cat lady, and refreshingly honest. Thank God Dina came back.

Back with Teresa, Milania is making breakfast by herself, at the stove, at age 7. I love this kid. We also see Audriana and she is perfection. We have known these girls forever and seeing them is nice. Teresa is doing a cookbook and the girls are making Tiramisu with her. The girl is working to cover her legal fees. I feel bad for her, am 100% Team Teresa, think Juicy knowingly did some bad shit and she is paying for it.

Amber now introduces Teresa and Nicole. Teresa is married to Rino, for the 2nd time, and Nicole is divorced. Nicole thinks women only need two things: Dunkin Donuts and oral sex. Rino is obsessed with food and sex. Perhaps the sisters should swap out Rino. They're a bit much and I can’t tell if they're cute or annoying. Time will tell but I can safely say Amber is annoying. That was fast. I’m on my 2nd cup of wine.

Everyone is getting ready for Amber’s party. Dina’s closet is divine. Melissa doesn’t know what to wear and Joe is trying to convince her to stay home and get naked. Amber is dressing her kids and she is a hard ass. Jumping to Dina and Teresa, they're in the car and Teresa is not nervous to be in a large group. While she cannot stop the gossiping, she is being brave, facing it all head on, and Dina is by her side. 

Melissa arrives, with Joe, and is hanging with Amber and the twins.  Amber is freaking out by her guests spilling food and bringing snow into her home. She wonders what “book of etiquettessy” they read. Bless her. Columbia is really paying off. Dina and Tre arrive, everyone is whispering about Teresa, she is not letting it get to her, and Dina is rubbing people the wrong way, which makes me love Dina more.

Dina tells the new chicks about The Ladybug Foundation and they act like they don’t know.  These chicks have been watching from the beginning and they know. Come on. Amber tells us she is a cancer survivor. I wish her continued health. Everyone is getting to know each other and it is interesting because we know they already know about each other. This show is funny. For now. This will get old really fast.

I think Milania is the best thing about this show. Always have. Always will. Back at the party, Amber asks Melissa why she disappeared after she got married and tells her she never heard from her when she had cancer. Melissa says she never knew she had cancer. I call bullshit. Amber calls out Melissa by telling her she sent her a message on Facebook and Melissa wants proof of the message. Melissa is a liar.

Melissa is upset Amber is putting the lack on communication on her. Dear Lord. I was so excited to be rid of Rich Wakile, but he is replaced with Rino. Ugh. Melissa goes to Teresa and Dina and gossips about Amber and the Facebook message. How old are these women? Whatever. Time for a family portrait at Teresa’s as it is Juicy’s Grandma’s 80th birthday. It is a big deal and all taking place at Teresa’s house.

We see Juicy for the first time and he looks good. His dad Frank arrives and it is sad as he recently passed away. Everyone is in black except for Nona who is in red and it is a beautiful picture. Juicy gives a lovely speech and Gia cries. The truth is I am crying too. It is vey sad. Juicy will pay for his crime, but the suffering of the kids is heartbreaking. Gia tells Juicy she loves him as she breaks down. It is crushing.

Juicy cries with her and Frank kisses them, telling his son not to worry. I am bawling when and the In Memoriam comes up for Frank. Oy vey. I have missed this show and these people. By these people of course I mean Teresa and Dina. I can do without the others. The season looks like it is going to be explosive and classic Jersey. I am in and I cannot wait to watch, drink, blog, and keep it real.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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