'The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' Recap: The Maloof Hoof
The housewives dialed it down a bit this week in anticipation of what looks like another epic battle next week, and also, out of a humble, quiet respect for shoes.
The episode opens as a scattered Lisa wanders home just in time to help Pandora with her wedding planning. Pandie - who we’ll all recall was once described as something along the lines of tasteful and classy - has selected invitations for her wedding, she tells Lisa, and they will cost a very tactful total of $15,000. How does one manage to rack up such a modest debt to a stationary company? Well: each individual invitation will be delivered in a delightfully discreet 8x11-ish box, quietly adorned with a layer of fake white flowers and a tastefully understated flower made of faux-diamonds. Upon opening the box, the recipient is finally faced with the invitation itself, and will no doubt remark upon the sheer restraint that the Vanderpumps have thus far exhibited.
Across the street, Adrienne is working on her own understated project, having gathered together a team of designers and marketing directors to develop a shoe line that will benefit the Step Up Women’s Network. The cause is near and dear to her heart, she says, because not only does she love shoes, she loves empowering young women (a specific and pointed cause, if ever there was one). And nothing “empowerment” like a pair of six-inch stilettos!
Sitting around her palatial dining room table, Adrienne proudly directs the attention of her collected group of professionals to a pile of footwear heaped at its center. It’s a small sampling of her favorite shoes, she says, and proceeds to describe each piece using words that she thinks are the kinds of things fashion people say: “I love the open toe, and I think it's beautiful for evening, and it has that bling factor, but it's still...it's not...it's done so elegantly."
Outside the peaceful calm of the villa Maloof, though, we soon find that the world is facing a tornado of upset loyalties. Indeed, stars are colliding and the universe is spinning on its head as none other than Kyle and Brandi meet up together for a mani at an unnamed Beverly Hills salon. Yes, ‘twould appear that the two women have shoved aside their differences (and in Kyle’s case, her previously sacred sisterly allegiance) in the name of civility and of maintaining a death grip on their respective plotlines. And what better way to bury the hatchet than under the joyful drip of the manicurist’s brush?
As the two women sit awkwardly next to each other in the otherwise empty salon (I ask you, is there anything more depressing than an empty nail salon?), Brandi indicates that she “gets” this group of girls and the way that they socialize by offering to host a get-together for the ladies at a friend’s house in Malibu. The invitation is well-received by Kyle, it seems normal, it seems proper, right up until Brandi (no doubt at the behest of some sadistic producer) tosses out the idea of bringing a porn star in to teach the girls how to give blow jobs.
Records screech. Crickets cricket. This is not your audience, Brandi. Like shoes and empowerment, female bonding does not always go hand in hand with felating cucumbers.
Kyle, thank God, didn’t bite (ha), but to her credit, rather than evilly decide to let Brandi sally forth with her blow job plan (you can totally see Kyle doing that, can’t you?), she kindly explains that perhaps this isn’t quite the right activity for the likes of a Maloof and a Vanerderpump. I think it’s safe to say that with that, the world heaved a sigh of relief.
Of course, in Beverly Hills, all roads lead to Adrienne Maloof’s house, so the episode starts its final act with the ladies piling into their respective limos to head to her fashion show. Taylor, Russell, Kyle and Mauricio take one, Lisa, Ken and Muhammed take another, and Camille takes a third (I guess this marks the part of the season where the producers gave up on trying to get Kim to attend anything). Alone in the limo together, Taylor and Russell try to eek out some semblance of a normal couple’s conversation, but it comes out stilted and unnatural. The two of them are like a pair of wounded birds, struggling to put on their happy faces and fly like the rest of the group but too deeply, utterly injured to find any real joy in it. It’s actually kind of sad…
…which is why its so great that we don’t have to think about it for too long! Because soon there are shoes. Or at least, the promise of shoes. Once all the guests at her party have found snacks, alcohol and seats, Adrienne takes to the microphone to introduce the fashion show. She’s flanked to left by the CEO of Step Up Women’s Network, who is not allowed to speak but rather stands off to the side awkwardly as Adrienne holds forth on how wonderful it is to empower other women.
And with a champagne toast, the catwalk show commences. There are dresses, there are skinny models, and there are…the same pair of black shoes, over and over again. “Where are Adrienne’s shoes?” asks Camille. It’s the question that’s on everyone’s mind, since that was the entire point of the episode. Adrienne later makes some remark about how she “didn’t want to show them off too much,” but honestly, whatever. We’ll never know who made the decision to keep the “Maloof hoof” under wraps, but frankly, we never really cared that much about what the shoes looked like. We were hoping for a fight, and we didn’t get one. But we think we have a good shot at it next week.