Getting Batty: The Real Housewives of New Jersey Season 13, Episode 6 recap
Just in time for spring training, this episode took us back out to the ballgame! For the second consecutive year, Team RHONJ played Maimonides Medical Health Center in Brooklyn as part of a fundraiser Dolores spearheaded for their breast cancer ward. (Last year they raised $180,000; this year, the tally was $200,000.)
But while the game, which, in being bookended by “therapy” sessions for separate housewives was literally the centerpiece of the episode, it wasn’t the focal point. No, that continued to be the battle lines being drawn between Jennifer A. and Marge and between Teresa/Luis and Melissa/Joe.
The episode begin with Teresa attending a therapy session with a woman names Tegan. The old-school OG says she was always averse to therapy, followed by a montage of some of her biggest outbursts, from the Season 1 finale to last year’s violent antics and outbursts against Marge, behavior which would get most people fired from most other forms of employment. She says she is doing this with Luis’ encouragement. She’s the first, but not the last therapist of the episode to behave in a non-therapist way. Instead of responding with questions about how various events make Teresa feel, she says “Wow!” and compliments Luis’ own behavior. This feels…fake.
It also provides Tre with another opportunity to bash her brother, describing Joe’s temper and their toxic relationship. At no point does Tegan prompt her patient to look inward, so there’s no chance for her to change her behavior or even take an active role in trying to shift their troubled relationship. It’s just validation. She also mentions that her family did not attend certain events in Antonia’s life, which upset her – but it isn’t clear that not attending means not being invited.
We also deal with the fallout from Jennifer A.’s and Marge’s blowup ant Jen Fessler’s lunch. The former says “Margaret has a habit of finding anything remotely negative and throwing it in my face without any regard to how it will affect my life,” a classic pot-calling-the-kettle-black moment (pun intended). First of all, the hypocrisy. From her first season, Jen has needled Marge about her sex life: her affair, her marriage, the fact that she slept with her boss when she was younger and he had the power. Secondly, you can’t play this game: You chose to be on television, you chose to start fights, you chose not to back off – whatever personal information you may want to hide is your to hide until you sign a contract to go on television and tout your personal life.
This conflict will clearly continue. Teresa will also continue to harbor hatred for Marge, but knowing Marge is smarter, will stop fighting ang insulting her and instead try to jab her through Jennifer A. and, one imagines, through whichever newbie there is – which in this case, continues to look like Danielle Cabral, who knows which side her return season contract is buttered on.
At the game, Joe and Teresa and Luis all get along, and the children in tow all hug and say they wish that could always be their normal, but Tre and Gia seem to shrug the idea that they could play the bigger person and heal this rift. She then says she feels like Joe and Melissa are trying to drive a wedge between her and her cousins. Well, you know how I feel about that. Jennifer ignores Marge, and there’s some filler with Frank having to adjust to the fact that his ex-wife might really be moving on twenty years after their divorce. I can’t care. Grow up, Frank. Your family dynamic deserves to be shaken up. I just hope Paulie’s heart issues can be resolved easily.
Things at the game go fine. Danielle catches a ball and then we see more footage of her playing sports when she was younger (there’s always more footage and even though it probably comes from the second Bush’s presidency, it looks like it’s from the 1970s).
Then we get to the second therapist, “Dr. Judy,” who sees Bill and Jennifer A., but really only seems there to validate Jen. She tells the therapist what Rachel told her, about how Olivia said she wants to be a “love therapist,” which deviates from her original plan, to have her daughter go into acting. And how Olivia found about Bill’s past infidelity on TikTok, and how whenever her parents are fighting, she wants them to kiss and show they love each other.
Bill doesn’t speak much. He looks contrite and sour as his wife talks about how he doesn’t participate. Well, he works hard and makes a lot of money and provides for a lifestyle that landed you on the show that now brings you a paycheck. A show built on showing your private life. You went on said show and attacked other people’s private lives knowing this secret could get out, and affect your children. Now you keep wanting to throw blame and accountability in every direction. I wish I could find a way into this storyline that didn’t feel so one-sided. My saving grace? That so far, Rachel hasn’t been drawn to the dark side like Danielle so easily has.
See you next week!