We’re celebrating the Christmas season (and no other religious celebration) in New Jersey this week. Truth be told, every day is like Christmas when you’re in New Jersey. I mean, I just hear that. I will, of course, never set foot in that state as I am allergic to hair gel and gold chains. Allegedly. I’ll sue myself. Either way, everyone is getting into the Christmas spirit and we know this because Bravo is editing these scenes together faster than a Micro Machines commercial. Tre and Barney’s kids are smashing ornaments and screaming through the holidays when they really should be writing letters to Santa asking him for parents who don’t break the law on the regular. I have to admit that Bravo is doing a good job of making me feel kind of bad for these two. Plus, the fact that they tear up on almost every scene they’re in this season is making me think this is the most real and genuine we’ve seen on this show since season 1 (when no one had any clue what they were doing).
Important Note: Dina’s new tagline of “I’m back to bring the zen. Namaste, bitches!
This is the best tagline I’ve heard since Aviva’s “…I know they’re just pulling my leg.”
Meanwhile Melissa and Doozer are decorating their rental property for Christmas while they get ready to build their “dream home” in Franklin Lakes. I kind of miss their “redone house” that they used to live in and apparently so does Melissa’s daughter because she referred to their new home as “small and disgusting.” Now that could have just been in the editing because for all we know she could have been referring to her father. Or, any of her relatives for that matter. I like how Melissa looks like she thinks she can “catch poverty” simply by living in there. Mind you their rental home is probably upwards of $1M, but that’s neither here nor there. The main takeaway is that their house is way better than yours and still not good enough for them. Also, no matter how much money you have plastic Christmas decorations never go out of style. And money can’t buy you class (my friend).
We’re also learning more and more about the twins (Olsen-style). It’s fitting that we meet their mom on the Christmas episode since her name is legit “Santa.” I have to say, I like her. I do. I even like their father. I do. They’re just simply reminders that people like this actually do exist in this world and not just in Martin Scorsese films. Their father was ranting and raving about them all being Italian and how being Italian is a tradition. Is it though? I mean, your uncle passing out at every family wedding is a tradition. Being Italian is more like being born with blue eyes or, you know, having rickets.
You know who else we’re learning more about? Amber. And if you thought she was a bag of insanity in the first episode, well, the crazy train just keeps on chugging along in this episode too. For real, all she does is scream everything she says. It’s like, relax, you’re not at a concert right now asking your friend to go get you a Zima so you don’t miss anything…you’re in your home and you’re building gingerbread houses with your kids. Although kudos to her for admitting that she originally thought kids were “disgusting beings” until she had her own. And beyond the tradition of making Christmas cookies, Amber and her husband (is any man in Jersey over 5’4″ or no?) are having their kids practice a fire drill since Amber alerts us (see what I did there?) that you always hear stories about a family celebrating Christmas together and then their tree catching on fire, burning the house down and killing the dog. It’s just like the song says! Ironically enough Amber’s voice typically sounds like a smoke alarm so the children must always be in fire drill mode. At one point Amber’s husband is climbing out the second floor window with one of those plastic fire ladders and reassuring his young kids that even if they had to jump out of the window the jacuzzi would break their fall. Why aren’t they practicing that right now? And toss a toaster into the jacuzzi, you know, for sport.
I’m still intrigued by every scene Tre is in because they’re talking legal issues on the regular, which is just what I hoped for. I feel like the only time you know she’s being fake is when she says ‘the phrase that pays’ which is, “I’m focusing on my four beautiful daughters…” It’s like, do you have to say four? I’d go with 3. You do the math. I jest. But you know who legit seems the most freaked out by all of this? Doozer, Tre’s brother. Every scene he’s in he is skittish and never makes eye contact when talking about this. Either he’s really nervous for them or he’s trying to play “not it!” with the legal system. At least Tre is kinda sorta talking about it with him when she goes over to visit his plot of land that he’s going to use for their new house (in which Melissa mentioned she wanted to pee on, for reasons that are unclear to me). Although he tries to dap it up with her so that he doesn’t cry. No! I shouted. I want the tears. Because here’s the deal. If that was me, I would be freaking the F out in every single scene I was in. They wouldn’t even be able to use any of the footage because I would be screaming into the camera “someone please help me!” I would also be hauling ass to Switzerland for good. But that’s just my strategy. You may have your own.
Later it was nice to see Kathy and Rosie (woo hoo!) make a comeback for the cousin’s Christmas dinner. Do you think Kathy feels slighted that she’s filming this scene, but isn’t really on the show anymore? If she doesn’t she should. I’m kidding. Maybe if she listened to my suggestion last season and stopped with the whole canolli storyline and went with the “murder for hire” husband plot she’d be in more episodes/jail this year. People really need to listen to me more. Either way, all the cousin’s are swapping “gag gifts” with each other. Seems like a waste to me. If they really cared they’d each hand a giant bag of money to Tre and Barney with a card that said, “For this week’s legal fees.” However, some of the joke gifts were funny like the dictionary they gave to Teresa. She seemed a little pissed, but I’m sure if she opened it she’d realize you can hide a knife in there that can easily get past the prison guards.
In the end, we all get to watch Tre’s kids open up their Christmas presents on camera, positioned perfectly towards the light so that everything looks perfect. I noticed less under the tree this year, but who’s counting? Besides me. No really, did you count? Let me know what you came up with and we’ll compare notes. The big surprise gift was a real live dog that Milania will probably drown in the bathtub when she’s done killing off the rest of her family, you know, before she sets fire to the whole place. I know Gia (z-snap) knows what’s going on, but do the rest of the kids know about the legal troubles? They must be onto something because at bedtime Barney is telling them all they need to be there for each other and be best friends and take care of each other. For real, I would be in tears at all times if I wasn’t sure if I was going to jail. And this brings me to my next point. As Barney and Tre are sipping wine by the fire (like that one episode of Who’s the Boss where things got awkward between Tony and Angela…or was that every episode?) Barney keeps saying things like, “So, you know, we have these little, you know, little legal issues, you know. So let’s just say, you know, if I have to go on, you know, vacation for a little bit…” I’m sorry, what?! Little legal troubles? 39 counts. Little legal troubles are that time in college where I was drunk and pee’d in front of the library and security made me go to campus court. And “go on vacation?” Vacation for a little bit is a weekend at the Cape. You’re facing upwards of 50 years followed by possible deportation. Deportation! Meaning, America is all like “We don’t want you anymore so you can’t live here….and we welcome everyone into this place.” Either way, I still feel bad for them. I know, I know they did shady things but still.
Finally, things that happened that I don’t care about:
- Dina and Nicole talking about the rise of kale
- Lexi going to college
- The restaurant business and Giovanni getting into the family business
- Nicole’s 9-month relationship (but I did like the wine holder gift that looked like a shoe and how her mom thought he bought it at the pharmacy)
- Melissa and Doozer getting their tongues stuck on the pole a la A Christmas Story