Bethenny Frankel Continues to Win Real Housewives Reality Competition

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Photo: Bravotv.com

Last night's episode of The Real Housewives of New York City was merciful. Producers relieved us from the torture of watching a thonged Silex cavort naked in St. Barts this time around (Seriously? St. Barts in the summertime is supposed to be glamorous?), and they finally threw Bethenny a bone and gave her a date (though we don't know in which order). Ramona's daughter Avery made a long-overdue appearance, and she was just as awesomely, adolescently mortified by her mother as she was last season ("Just because things look good on me," she told Ramona, "doesn't mean they look good on you"). Wonderful. We hope the high-heeled slut-booties her mother bought for her won't cause her to mature too much. Or do we? At least then we'd get an interesting plotline...

Kelly: You would think that after beating up her hot boyfriend last week in real life, this would have been Kelly Killoren Bensimon's week. But no. The only thing she did that hinted there were any mechanical workings inside her zombied exterior was insist her kids wear matching sweaters when LuAnn came over, even though they were obviously hot. Even Ramona's embarrassingly sycophantic/aggressive attentions ("You are so brave for coming to an event by yourself," you sad, sad, Mario-less single lady) failed to get a reaction out of her. Is it possible this woman is an actual alien?

Jill: The mother hen of the show did her best to make a plotline for herself by clucking first at Brad, her gay husband, over his renovations to her apartment, and then at Silex for their renovations. She was right in the first regard, but was way out of line in the second. She mocked the historic brownstones of Brooklyn, comparing them to the ones on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. But as we all know, there are a lot of wonderful original features in Brooklyn townhouses, and it's why many people move to the borough. Sure, she may be right about the van Kempens living in squalor unnecessarily, but it's not like she is in control of her own renovation. P.S.: Bring back Ally!

Ramona: Ramona made a bold effort again this week. We're liking her more and more. Unfortunately she was undone by two things: (1) Bethenny's bikini-clad body next to hers, and (2) her own daughter's gorgeous legs. Sorry, R.

Alex: Once again the eccentric, recently fired Brooklynite scored points by doing things her own way. She was the only housewife who would agree to help out Bethenny at her bakery booth, and she was unpretentious enough to deal cheerily with the delayed renovations in her home. Also, when Ramona publicly snubbed her at a party, she mused: "I don't know what her problem is, and frankly, I don't care." Excellent! Unfortunately, it's true, those people should really not be writing a parenting guide. And we really don't know why she couldn't have sublet a small apartment near her townhouse, or stayed in the hotel where her husband works, and avoided all the mess (and, as Jill pointed out, potentially dangerous pointy nails) of the renovation. They could move in with us! Seriously! We could use the extra income, and we're not fancy. We'd even offer to cut Francois and Johan's hair! For free. Pro bono. Any. Time. Cut it. Please.

LuAnn: LuAnn is out of control this season. She's shallow and manipulative and dumb, and not a scene goes by in which it does not become apparent that she is insanely deluded about her skills as an etiquette maven. Like when she told Kelly to stop being the "Mommy police" for reminding her daughter about table manners — hello! — it was not so long ago that LuAnn hijacked her own daughter's birthday to host an entire lunch based upon etiquette lessons. Plus, as Ramona points out on her Bravo blog, LuAnn chews with her mouth open. However, as much as we wanted to toss a skinny margarita in her face during the scene when she told Bethenny that "men don't like to have to work to compete with a woman," we actually ended up feeling bad for her. Bethenny was right; LuAnn stopped her own life to run off with a guy. And this etiquette thing, however boneheaded and ill-conceived it is, is her only way of getting it back. She still sucks, though.

Bethenny: Bethenny suffered through everyone's dating advice ("Why does everyone think I'm like Shrek or something?"), behaved through her drinks date with LuAnn, and amazingly, did not visibly dry heave when Alex told her she met Simon when she was trolling online for sex. She was matter-of-fact about her fellow housewives' shortcomings ("I think that Ramona's a little competitive with LuAnn") and kind in that she didn't reveal the reasons for her non-feelings for the guy from STK on-camera. (We'll say it for her: He's not hot enough. There.) Plus, her eye makeup was really well applied. So Bethenny, you won this round. Please don't send us any more vegan cupcakes, though.