Sunday night. Time to hang out with my friend, Bravo. I am not sure if I should be proud or ashamed of myself for admitting that I have watched every single episode of Southern Charm New Orleans in real time, but here I am on the couch on a Sunday at 9/8 central. I’ll even admit that I’ve watched some episodes more than once, so it’s safe to say that I am singlehandedly keeping this show alive. You’re welcome…or I’m sorry.
The gang wakes up alive and well in the haunted mansion. Nothing happens except for some missing socks, which the crazy mansion tour guide had warned them might go missing the night before. The Myrtles must have adopted the same sock goblin that lives in my dryer and under my bed, to which I say: keep the bastard, Myrtles. It’s almost the end of the school year and my kid is going to school with mismatched socks everyday this week, so we are too close to the end to lose any more right now. I would also like to know: who in South Louisiana sleeps with socks on anyway? I want to meet you weirdos.
It turns out that any creepy noises they potentially heard in the night were thanks to cousin Jared and Susan, and their late-night shenanigans trying to scare everyone. So, now that I’ve gotten to the bottom of the sock situation, we can all rest assured knowing the The Myrtles is not even really haunted, despite this long infomercial for the spooky inn. It’s just a sock goblin and some annoying friends.
Anyway, the crew checks out and climbs back into the white van to head home, but not before stopping for brunch, where Tamica is at her peak Tamica self. There seems to be some huge misunderstanding between Barry and Tamica, and she is visibly ignoring him when he is trying to rationalize with her like an adult. If there’s a word for the opposite of misogyny, then that is the very evident, common theme throughout this show. And, as much as I want to support this, I have to admit that watching this is just as uncomfortable as watching a misogynistic man act hostile towards a woman.
After another uncomfortable meal, the guys and girls split up. The guys hit the links, while the girls shop in the metropolis known as Frankinton, Louisiana over at their premier shopping destination. Ok, it was a gift shop that legitimately looks like it could have been mistaken for the town’s fire station. As it turns out, Reagan was also uncomfortable by Tamica’s hostility at brunch, and tries to offer her some advice. It’s like watching the blind leading the blind, except you can’t tell which one is blinder in this situation.
I feel like this whole show is just a bunch of promotional commercials for Louisiana. This is not how reality television works. I mean, how am I supposed to believe that these people actually visit all these places and can afford to take all these excursions, when everything is given to them for free in exchange for product placement?
Today’s featured business was Frankinton’s golf club, as evidenced by the fact that all the guys are wearing golf shirts with the club’s logo on it. Even Jon was wearing a polo. At least, I think he was. I honestly can’t tell anymore. It might have just been a club logo on his nipple. Also, it was painfully clear that these guys have never touched a golf club in their lives, because even Mr. “Artist Athlete” (whatever that means, Jon) sucked.
Back at Tamica and Barry’s house, we learn about why it’s tradition to make red beans on Mondays from Barry’s mom. I’ve made red beans on a Monday maybe twice in my life, and it was really because the vat of red beans lasts us until Wednesday, and by Thursday I am ready to Uber Eats anyway. So, there you have it: the real reason you make red beans on a Monday is because they multiply in the pot overnight and last the entire week.
Tamica and Barry’s mother have an interesting relationship, where Tamica thinks it’s funny banter and Barry’s mother basically just can’t stand her. It’s adorable.
Meanwhile in the French Quarter, Jeff and Reagan are eating red beans out of takeout boxes – the best way to eat them. Jeff, being a thoughtful husband, goes over to his wife’s house (still weird) to bring her some dinner, since she’s been juggling all her many projects that keep her too busy to care about her husband’s issues. I have to wonder: for someone who is so busy, Reagan still finds the time to put on an entire Target beauty section worth of makeup and have perfectly blown out hair every single day. I am neither in law school nor running an ugly doorknocker jewelry line, but I’m lucky if I put on some tinted moisturizer and leggings that have not been worn the day before.
However, I am impressed by Reagan’s ability to work on a computer and have a conversation, all whilst simultaneously drinking wine and holding her dog. I always thought it was a lie when people included “multi tasking” as a skill on resumes, but Reagan can clearly do it all. (And by all, I mean hold a dog and drink wine simultaneously, but my standards have clearly been lowered these days.)
Anyway, it’s now time to promote Jack Sutton jewelry in exchange for some airtime, so Justin goes shopping for an anniversary gift for Kelsey. The inside of Jack Sutton looks as generic as a Jared at the mall. I have actually never been to either (I’m a total snob), but I‘ve seen the commercials. He went to Jared. However, the price tags at Jared Sutton are real, and I have to wonder how we are supposed to believe that Justin can afford anything from here, aside from a jewelry cleaning cloth, when he and his girlfriend currently live at home with his parents. (More deep thoughts: maybe he can afford this BECAUSE he lives with his parents?) Anyway, if it wasn’t for the generic item that he eventually picks up (read: was given to him in exchange for some promotional time) and gifts to Kelsey later in the episode, I would think that he was actually on to something.
Barry shows up to help Justin pick out the perfect gift, since he seems to be doing really well with his own wife these days. He offers up a really important piece of advice: either get jewelry or gift cards. Being as I am a woman, I am going to edit this to read: either get jewelry or don’t show up.
While literally stumbling into the ring section (JACK SUTTON SELLS ENGAGEMENT RINGS, PEOPLE), Barry tells us that Tamica lost her ring, which seems really suspicious since she doesn’t seem to even like her husband, based on her behavior on the show. If I ever lost my ring, I think I would just run away from home and never come back. I would just keep running. Forever.
Jared Sutton also shows Barry a piece of jewelry that Tamica has picked out. It’s $84,000 and Barry compares it to a Porsche. It’s actually a starter Porsche, Barry. But, I do love this fantasyland they all live in, though; Jon doesn’t even have an assistant but plans on having a consistent $10 million in his account, Tamica wants an $84,000 necklace to go with her Metairie rental, and Barry thinks a Porsche costs what he thinks it costs. I feel like I need to join this planet they are on, so I can finally have the castle made out of ice cream and the money tree I’ve always wanted.
Jon is at his apartment slash studio (which is actually in the CBD, so Jon is literally the only cast member that lives in New Orleans proper) painting shirtless, when he gets a visit from his sister. Actually, I can’t remember if he was shirtless here either. Even when he’s wearing a shirt, he looks like he’s shirtless. Shari seems cool, and checks in on her brother and offers him some words of support and encouragement. We also learn from Shari that he liked to paint butt cracks as a child, so that was adorable and so appropriately on brand for Jon.
It’s the night of dueling dates. Justin and Tamica go on their first date night in probably as long as it’s been since they’ve had sex (so basically since their last child was conceived is what we’ve been told), while Justin takes Kelsey to Tabeau for their anniversary. Aside from dueling dates, there’s also some dueling Brennan’s family product placement going on, because Justin and Tamica go to Brennan’s for a casual dinner.
At Tableau, Justin and Kelsey talk about the past year together as a couple, and discuss their hopes for the future together. The fact that they are just now celebrating their one-year anniversary and have been living together (albeit, with Justin’s parents) makes me think that Justin is not the commitment-phobe Tamica makes him out to be, but I guess a stable relationship that seems to be moving in a normal trajectory does not make for great television. Yet, here I am writing about this totally normal relationship.
After their heartfelt conversation about marriage and the future, it’s time for Justin to give Kelsey her highly anticipated gift (FROM JACK SUTTON JEWELRY. CHECK OUT THE FIRESALE AT THE FRENCH QUARTER LOCATION) that was not from the engagement ring section (BUT, DON’T FORGET: THEY SELL RINGS). Spoiler alert: he actually didn’t propose – not because he doesn’t want to marry her, but because the generic gold bar necklace he gave her was a free gift in exchange for promotional time on Bravo. Had Justin been given an engagement ring from Jared Sutton, I believe in my heart of hearts that these two would be engaged by now. Because, I love romance. Instead, we have to watch Kelsey see if there is a ring hidden under her necklace.
Let this be an important lesson to all men: do not (I repeat: DO NOT) hand your girlfriend a jewelry box that resembles a ring box three milliseconds after talking about marriage, unless there is an actual engagement ring in there. (Rings on strings don’t count either, for the Vanderpump fans out there). This is when you are allowed to give her a gift card.
Over at Brennan’s, Barry tells Tamica that he feels that they are no longer as connected, and that he would like for her to spend more time with the family – not just when the cameras are rolling. She ignores him, but finally agrees to work on it, probably to get him to be quiet and stop ruining her meal. The end.
I am dangerously close to starting a petition to bring Benny Poppins back. Who’s with me?