This week we start our journey into the totally legit, in no way mob connected, lives of the Manzo family women. They’ve got hair, bubbies, and wads of cash all standing at the ready to flash across our TV screens.
So grab your straws and your tarted up drinks and settle in because these women are nothing if not an acquired taste.
I love New Jersey. This is a state that totally has their priorities straight.
Mob wives rich hos wealthy housewives get their own reality show and the Governor gets a billboard.
OMG this show is a riot. These women are totally over-the-top pattern perfect stereotypes of the women in cheesy mob movies, and I’m thrilled. It’s like finding out that Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum novels are real. If you haven’t read them, I totally recommend them.
Anyho, it’s time to meet Teresa:
Don’t worry, Teresa has evolved since her big hair days into a model of sophistication and elegance.
Teresa is shopping, because, well of course she is, and she’s clearly in her element. I’m guessing that roughly %80 of Teresa’s life revolves around shopping. How can you not love a woman who heads straight for the leopard skin bikinis. Woohoo!!
Teresa prances around in her bikini while the other ladies ooh and aww about her great figure. Still something’s missing. What could it be? What could it be? Oh, yeah, bubbies. Girlfriend is kind of lacking in the bubbie department, but no worries, double Ds are just a credit card away. Of course, she’s going to have to get her ass loving husband on board with the plan. Being an assman, bubbies are kind of low on his priorities, but I’m thinking that what Teresa wants Teresa probably gets.
Hey, what a surprise; Teresa’s husband is a contractor/entrepreneur. What’s more he’s “totally delish, big and juicy”. I’m pretty sure she’s referring to his wallet, but whatever gets her juices going.
I wonder if Lulu and the Count would still be happily shaking their badonka donks together if she had been in the habit of wandering into his office and waving her hiny at him? Seriously, it seems to be working for Teresa.
Juicy Joe is perhaps the only contractor in the country who’s business is booming during the housing crash. While other contractors are laying off workers, and emptying out their retirement accounts, Juicy Joe is building Teresa’s dream house. No used houses for Teresa. She wants everything shiny and new, sans that skeevy lived in feeling. The dreamhouse is a charming little place approximating your basic 4000sqft French chateau. Hell, filling all those rooms with furniture is going to be a lot of responsibility. I’m thinking interior decorators, stress and lots of tedious deliberation. But that’s me. Teresa is way more evolved than I am. Forget the interior decorators or the stress. I would never have thought of standing in the middle of a store and playing spin the bottle to choose my furniture. I am so hoping that she buys a heart-shaped waterbed. I’ll even buy her some leopard skin satin sheets as a housewarming present.
Teresa is nothing if not efficient. She looks, she wants, she points, and she pays. $120,360.00 in Cash. That’s right, cash. Because, that thing called the economy, it’s not doing so good, right now. LOL. And besides, with the unpredictability of the stock market, money laundering is totally the way to go. I so want to believe this segment, but, seriously, if she’s going to count out 12,000 hundred dollar bills it’s going to take a while. Even if she counts at a rate of 3 bills per second, she’s still looking at nearly an hour of counting. Somehow, I just don’t see Teresa having that kind of attention span.
Dina has blond hair, bodacious bubbies, inflated lips, and that zen like calm that goes with knowing that she can always cut any bitch who’s bothering her. Dina tells us that some people think she’s a gold digger, but I’m betting not a whole lot of them say it to her face. And then I’m totally distracted by a random runway picture full of male underwear models.
Now here’s the good part: Dina is married to her sister’s husband’s brother, which totally messes up any chance of a reasonable family tree. Those connecting lines are going to be crossing all over the place. And seriously, do not mess with these people. They’ve taken the concept of family to a level that hasn’t been seen since the Godfather. Of course, with the whole sister/brother sister/brother marriage thing, I can sort of understand their going for the Sopranos shtick. It probably puts a damper on all of the Deliverance jokes.
Dina’s big sister/sister-in-law, Caroline, is a formidable woman, as in she would make an awesome warden for a woman’s maximum security prison and she totally has her little sister/sister-in-law’s back. Not that little Dina needs it. Seriously, while Caroline might kick the ever lovin crap out of anybody that looked cross-eyed at her family, I’m pretty sure that little Dina is more of a slash em and leave em to bleed kind of girl.
Dina is looking for a bigger house because real estate shopping is just a great way for Bravo to highlight how wealthy these women are. I can’t wait for the inevitable foreclosure/for sale gossip items to start appearing. In the meantime, an anonymous realtor shows Caroline and Dina around the house sharing such items of interest as the fact that there is a chandelier lift to change the lightbulbs. Fool! Doesn’t he know who these women are? Hell no, the Manzo women don’t change anybody’s bulbs; they’ve got peeps. Seriously, dude is lucky that Caroline didn’t bitchslap him out the door. Being all zen-like Dina just shrugs and then looks around the kitchen for a butcher block. The house is okay, but it doesn’t have a waterfall. Of course, it doesn’t have an iceberg either, but I guess those aren’t as trendy. If she puts a waterfall in I totally hope she illuminates it with different colored spotlights that blink on and off, like the you see at Disneyland. What do you know? Dina is an interior decorator. But since she’s married into the Manzo clan she’s managed to expand her profession into event planning.
I’m guessing that not everybody in the Manzo clan is happy about doing a reality show. Either that or Dina’s husband, Tommy, has “gone swimming” in a pool of Juicy Joe’s drying concrete, because the only sign we see of him is in their wedding picture. Actually, this is kind of reassuring. Asssuming that he opted out of being filmed, it might suggest that someone in their gene pool has some brains.
Tommy is also pretty much MIA in the marriage. Dina figures that in the three years that they’ve been married they’ve spent about two weeks together. See, smart man. I’m telling you, this woman is nuts.
Dina’s daughter is going to drive me nuts. I hate picking on kids, but seriously, there’s only so old you can be and still claim that you don’t know how to make a bed before you start lining up for the short bus.
Caroline is an ‘old school’ housewife: devoted to her family, her husband, and the family business, unlike those modern day housewives who whore themselves out to cable networks. She calls herself a throwback and I’m confused. I’m not sure how far back on the evolutionary scale she’s talking about
Her husband Albert seems like a charming man, kind of like a ‘made’ Santa Claus, wearing a really ugly tie. He and Tommy own and run the Brownstone Catering company.
Thank God for Tommy Manzo and his possible brain power, because if Caroline’s son Christopher is any indication this families future generations are going to need some help. Christopher is in “the school of life” right now, which is a nice way of saying that he flunked out of community college, or maybe he never finished high school. God knows, but you’ve got to give the kid credit; he’s got big dreams. Christopher aspires to be the face of car washes and strip club, and what a surprise; he has a faux hawk. For now, Christopher’s dreams are on hold. He works at the family business, because of course he does.
Caroline’s daughter, Lauren, also decided to forego a college degree. Momma Manzo has absolutely no problem with this, because they’re a street smart family, and street smarts will get you farther than book smarts. You know, for their sake, I seriously hope the Manzos are part of the mob, because after this season airs there’s no way anybody is going to believe that they’re not. Like her brother, Lauren works at the Brownstone handling the brides for the weddings that are held there. I’m sure every woman that was “handled” by her will be happy to her Lauren describe herself as the “bride’s bitch”.
And then there’s Albie. Something tells me he inherited Uncle (?) Tommy’s genes. The good Lord only knows how it happened, but the dude ain’t dumb. Not only is he graduating from Fordham, he’s going on to Law School. He’s the first Manzo to finish college and Mama is proud. Seriously, Albie is smart, handsome…
Apparently, Albert and Tommy Manzo were lacking in the marriagable sister department when their wives’ brother started looking for a wife. Poor guy was forced to marry a woman completely unrelated to him by blood or marriage.
Jaqueline moved to New Jersey from Las Vegas when she married Chris, and it sounds like a rough transition. I can’t help feeling a little bad for the woman. She talks about how the Brownstone
mafia family is super tight and how alot of them aren’t really interested in getting to know other people (not to mention that they’re kind of scary), and how hard it is to raise children and hold them accountable in the lap of luxury. Her son, CJ, from her present marriage is 6 so he has time to develop into a full teenage nightmare. On the other hand, her daughter, Ashley, is seventeen and a total brat. Just once I would love to see one of these mothers do something when their kid mouths off. Seriously, I know this is like parenting 101, but when you ask your kid to clean their room before they go out, it’s not okay for them to ask if you’re on crack. Send their friends home, take away their cell phone, take away their car, take away their allowance, hell, strip them down to their panties and hang them out to dry, but DO NOT let your kids disrespect you. Sheesh.
Holy crap!! it’s Nina Van Horn!!
I’m pretty sure that Danielle/Nina is going to turn out to be the New Jersey version of Kim/Gretchen/Kelly. You know, the pathological batshit crazy one that everybody loves to hate, as opposed to the other pathological batshit crazy women everybody loves to make fun of.
Danielle/Nina isn’t married or related to anyone at the Brownstone, which is a refreshing twist. She’s also not a housewife, but that’s never been a requirement for this show. After all, what’s in a name? However, she is a retired model, so there you go. I’m officially going with the name Nina. Especially, when she mentions the celebrities that “got to meet her”.
I’m telling you, Nina might have a super hot bod, but after watching her masochistic workout in her home torture chamber, I’ve got a lot more love for my cellulite, ridden, flabby tuchus. It might not be as sleek and toned as hers, but it sure as hell is a lot more fun to live with.
Nina was engaged 19 times before she met her husband, so you know she’s a reliable, focused, personality who’s clear about what she’s looking for. Or she just really loves it when guys propose. Either way, she was nice enough to give back all of the other engagement rings. But she kept her husband’s engagement ring, because, “well, hello!” LOL. Sadly, she’s now looking for her 21st engagement ring, and I’m kind of wondering how many times do you have to get engaged before it starts feeling like the same old routine? At least marriage has clarified one thing for Nina; she wants a man with money. She talks about her ex-husband’s money with the same loving nostalgia that most people reserve for a close family member or a cherished pet.
I know those things can make you age fast but damn…
Divorce can do funny things to people, and so can arrested development. For Nina they’re combined. Not surprisingly she’s like a really horny teenager, trapped in a wiry, lonely, middle-aged body. It’s a lovely combination, especially when you’re a single parent as well. What a surprise, her three girls are her best friends. I’m guessing age appropriateness might be a problem here. Sure enough she asks them why they think people get divorced, because girls between the approximate ages of five through fifteen are by far the best demographic to give a middle-aged woman relationship advice.
Totally weird, one minute she giving her lips a poolside workout.
The next she’s aged forty years.
It turns out that Nina’s link to the Manzo mob is Jacqueline. They met at a salon when they were both getting their hair done. They bonded over the single mother experience, talked for four hours, and Nina shared naked pictures of herself which totally sealed the deal. Done! Besties for evah.
Over at Momma Manzo’s house, son’s Albie and Christopher are busy dissing each other. And it’s all kind of biblical. I can totally see Cain and Abel bitching at each other over whether it’s better to buy books to read them or to put them in their house to look cool. Wow, these guys make the old testament look exciting.
Albie wants to know what Christopher is going to do with his life, and Christopher brings up his dream of owning a string of car washes/strip clubs. On a more realistic note, Albie points out that Christopher can’t get a hot girl to come to the house, so it’s doubtful that he could get one to work for him. But he’s not giving Christopher enough credit, he’s had ample opportunity in his short life to face this grim reality and he’s found a work around. If he pays them enough, they will come. Well, some of them. At least the really skanky kind of hot ones.
Momma Manzo is nothing if not supportive in a really scary enabling kind of way. A lesser woman might object to their son making money through the exploitation of women as sexual objects, but Momma Manzo isn’t going to let a little thing like morals stand in the way of what her son wants to do. After all there are some really “high end strip clubs around” so as long as he makes it a strip club “that a mom could be proud of” she’s there for him.
MIA Tommy really needs to put in some more time with his wife Dina. Seriously, how many references to balls can a woman make during a tennis game? Hers? They’re sweating. Theirs? She’s only playing with expensive ones. His? Well they don’t come up. I’m guessing it ‘s been a while since she’s seen them.
Teresa’s oldest daughter has a dance performance and she’s got all three daughters in tow as they head over to the theatre. Anybody want to take a guess at how much cash she’s got on her?
Hey, Nina’s going out on a date. I think that’s awesome, but I’m not holding out alot of hope for a happily ever after march down the aisle. Unless, things have drastically changed since her days on Just Shoot Me you just know this isn’t going to end well. Like a good friend, Jacqueline goes over to Nina’s house to find just the right outfit for a date with an anonymous man she met over the internet, had phone sex with, exchanged pornographic self-portraits with, but has never met. Oops, my bad. He’s not anonymous after all. He goes by the screen name “Gucci Model”. Totally. Sounds. Like. A. Keeper. $10.00 he’s got a really big belly and a really tiny schnitzel.
Jacqueline has got to be the nicest non-judgemental person in the world. Seriously, I can’t even imagine what Lulu would have said about dating a semi-anonymous, phone-sex, internet troll. On the other hand, I’m guessing Alex would have been all for it. But back to the problem of clothes. How do you keep the mystery when he’s already seen you naked? Especially when he’s not the only one. I’m thinking that Jacqueline may be feeling a wee bit jealous. But before Jacqueline can worry too much about Nina’s generous photographic tendencies, Teresa shows up and pounds on the door, demanding to be let in before her hair frizzes.
I’m sorry but this is just sad. At best Gucci Model is a no show, and at worst he’s a cyber stalking freak by night and a married high school librarian by day.
You’ve got to love Jacqueline and Teresa’s decision to follow Danielle, and spy on her with their ridiculously large, high-powered binoculars. Almost as much as you’ve got to love the thought that Jacqueline, Teresa and the camera crew can sit across the bar from Nina, train their binoculars on her, and not be noticed.
Nina arrives at the bar at 7:30 and at 9:00 she’s still waiting. You’ve got to give her credit for persistence. On the other hand, an hour and a half was more than enough time to share every detail of her’s and Gucci Model’s twisted cyber-based non-relationship.
Nina finally realizes the mortally painful levels of pathetic desperation that she has reached and drunk dials Gucci Model to leave a nasty little message on his machine. Her next dial is to the girls still happily ensconced in their “hidden” position across the bar, where they are busy viewing the entire sad fiasco through the eyes of their stalker grade binoculars. Oops busted. Nina wants to know how long it will take to get to where she’s sitting, and the girls, with their camera crew sneak around the bar to surprise her. Hell at this point she probably is surprised. In an hour and a half she’s put away enough alcohol to miss an elephant if it came trundling around the corner.
Back at Momma Manzo’s house of enabling, the family is getting ready for Albie’s graduation party. I understand that Lauren and Christopher maybe a little limited, but you’d think she was running a halfway house for developmentally disabled adults, who can’t quite dress themselves. Christopher needs socks and can’t deal with his tie. The bride’s bitch can’t handle putting on her own shoes, and she’s still in her robe. Oh crap, either that’s not a robe, or Mama Manzo got too busy to help Lauren into her party dress.
Dina points out that Caroline’s kids are too spoiled too dependant and too high maintenance, and all of their future spouses are going to be driven nuts. I’m thinking that anybody who marries into this family is nuts anyway, so it won’t really matter. Wow, if Dina was just Albie’s aunt by marriage and not by blood, as well, I could totally see her fooling around with him. As it stands, it’s just too much of a back woods, my father is my uncle, type of situation to think about.
Dina tells us that she spends every night at home, but she gets two nights off to go out. I’m confused, but it doesn’t matter because we get to watch the totally thrilling spectacle of Dina getting her hair and nails done at the local salon. Tonight’s a girls night out and Dina gets to choose who gets to come. Jacqueline is a yes and Nina is a big fat in your face, No! I’m telling you, Nina is pathological in a sad, creepy kind of way, but Dina is just plain scary. Not surprisingly, Dina and Nina don’t play nicely together and Dina threatened to kick Nina’s ass. Not like thirty years ago on the school playground, but like a year ago in a bar. It’s amazing how much class and elegance gets bestowed with money.
When Jacqueline shows up at the spa, Nina is seated outside in a velour track suit looking pathetic and forlorn, and totally creepy. But not quite as creepy as her attempts to find out where the women are going for their girl’s night out. You know, I’ve got to wonder if the Bravo casting department hires these women and then confiscates the medication for the duration of the filming.
In a Bravo first the ladies consciously choose to go to a club where Nina is not likely to show up. So yay for maturity! But boo for drama!
Well, Gasmi, that’s it for our first week. I’m frantically working on the New York hausenfrau reunion part 2 episode, so please bear with me. I’m beginning to think this is the curse of the housewives revenge. I’ll either lose my mind or end up with carpal tunnel. Sigh.
Love you guys.