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This season looks like it’s going to be another hot and depressing mess for the ladies of Real Housewives of Potomac. There have been a few changes to the cast, beginning with the loss of Tha-Tha and her thampagne room and the addition of Candiace, pronounced “Can-dace” despite the extra and unnecessary “i.” My gut tells me “extra and unnecessary” are going to be applicable to her in more ways than one. We kick episode one off by doing a flashback to where we left off last season at the party at Karen’s weird, giant house in Great Falls after she fled Potomac in the middle of the night. This is one creepy, vacant, and borderline dilapidated house. Just because it’s big, doesn’t mean it’s nice. It’s like Claim Jumper: just because your food is served in a trough, it doesn’t mean it’s good. Moving on. Karen and whatever her husband’s name is have their tax-related woes splashed across headlines and Bravo is all too happy to show them all to us. The ladies all tell their reaction to the news, and Robyn is just happy that someone is finally financially worse off than she is. Now, I actually like Robyn because she doesn’t hide her struggle. She lives in her townhouse and is the first to tell you she’s broke as hell. Karen, the self-dubbed “Grande Damme” of Potomac, however, tries to pretend like her shitty 1990s rented castle isn’t crumbling around her. The Bravo editors take us to said home to check on Karen, but make sure to give us several shots of the exterior just to remind us she needs to get a pressure wash and termite inspection. She talks on the phone to her sister and claims she had noooooo ideaaaaa that her husband owes millions in back taxes. She’s legally not allowed to talk about it, and yet can’t seem to shut up about it in the most vague and annoying terms possible. Next we see Gizelle and Ashley going to lunch to discuss Gizelle’s boyfriend Sherman, Ashley’s shitty marriage and her naked photos in Ibiza. Ashley currently lives in an apartment. The ladies enjoy popcorn soup, which is fucking gross. Inevitably, the conversation turns to Karen and Ray’s (apparently that’s his name. Karen only calls him “the black Bill Gates” but that’s clearly a misnomer soooo…) tax problems. Next we go to Monique’s house which is a little more exciting because she’s the only one who doesn’t seem to be on the struggle bus. She wants to throw Chris a 40th birthday party, and the debate over whether or not to invite his awful mother arises. Monster-in-law was caught on camera calling Monique a “heifer” and Chris and her haven’t talked since. Now, if Monique is a heifer, then send me to the farm so I can be that much of a heifer too because I want those workout results without having to actually do the workouts. Now we’re with Robyn, Juan, and the boys going to the sporting goods store and slapping her ass. So I guess they’re back together. Juan finally got a job coaching at Coppin State so they’re moving from one townhouse to another. Robyn reveals they now share a bed and even have sex, so maybe this year we wont hear him practically in tears telling the producers that she just won’t fucking leave on a hot mic. Back to Gizelle and her girls. She puts her Everyhue makeup line on them and FaceTimes her boyfriend. Gizelle reveals that Sherman says she “only has to take care of the two F’s” and says she doesn’t feed him, but “takes care of the other ‘F’ verrrrry well”…gross. Next we see Ashley packing up her apartment so she can move back in with Michael and she seems very put out. It seems like she is loving life without Michael a lot more than life with Michael, and who can blame her. No one wants his old saggy ass and shitty Australian food. Back to Monique, who tells us her neighbors are the Marriotts, Tharrisse (nothing to brag about), and the owner of the Washington Redskins. Then she laughs about how Karen lives far away in not-Potomac. We hear all about her busy days filled with lunch and dinner dates. Back to Karen’s dump. She’s putting her food stamp muffins on a platter and says she’s “being domestic” to Broke Bill Gates. She confronts him about why he never told her and he’s basically like, “I did.” He reminds her they file taxes separately and don’t have any joint accounts so she’s off the hook. She keeps bragging about the lack of a joint checking account and said it’s because “he protected her” but I’m pretty sure it’s just so she can’t see when he’s paying for $5 hand jobs at the airport-adjacent strip mall massage parlors. Ashley is driving home to Michael, crying. She hates him and so do I. He presents her roses and she presents him with a turkey sandwich. He seems determined to make it work despite all the rumors about him boning other men in Europe. I think the best answer to this is for that shitty restaurant of theirs to just burn down so they can collect the insurance money and then go their separate ways. Michael is mad because Ashley keeps giving his money to her mom, who filed for bankruptcy last season. Robyn and Karen meet for lunch, and Karen and her mole are dressed like it’s 2005. Robyn reminds her that there is no way she could not have known Broke Bill Gates is, in fact, broke, and Karen lies and says he told her that he had never told her. Editors cut to him saying he did, and I love the shade. Karen gets mad because Robyn says the ladies are talking about it and blames her, even though it was in The Washington Post. Karen manages to say “the Washington Post is an institution; it is an honor to be mentioned” and Robyn and I burst out laughing. Karen follows that up with “Karen is debt free and loaded,” which is also a funny joke. She then screams “you’ve got to make millions to owe millions,” and then repeats it just in case we missed that humiliating line. We end there and I’m assuming we’ll follow all the ladies next week when they take a field trip to the unemployment line.

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