'RHUGT 2' Is More Than Just A Great Show – It's Bravo's Savior

- Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip -
'RHUGT 2' Is More Than Just A Great Show – It's Bravo's Savior

For some time now I've been struggling with my one true love: Bravo. The last few months I haven't been watching shows live like I used to (I've been saving them for whenever I have time) and I've found myself doing other things while the shows are on. I've been feeling burned and disappointed by new, savvy cast members who you could tell studied up before joining their shows. Let's be honest: We can all tell when someone's on a Bravo show to try to come up off of it. To quote Heather Dubrow, "it feels hollow." Something has just been off with Bravo this summer.

The perfect example of this is The Real Housewives of Dubai. When it was revealed that Dubai was going to be the new Housewives city, the excitement was off the charts. Everyone (including myself) was thrilled and we anxiously awaited the return of the iconic Caroline Stanbury from Ladies of London in a unique, luxe location; it just all felt right. But then it premiered. And I was underwhelmed.

The show has everything a Real Housewives franchise should have: money, drama, friendships, and characters built for reality TV. But there in lies the issue. This is a show that feels like it was built in a lab. There is no real depth, it feels all constructed, and that the women are just doing what they think we want to see.

This inauthenticity didn't use to be so palpable when new Housewives franchises launched, especially pre-social media. Sure, women would join in hopes of making money, getting brand deals, or covers of Life & Style, but there was still something to them, there was still some reality left. I never felt they were trying this hard.

And that's why when Peacock swooped in and launched Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip, I breathed a sigh of relief. A crossover of all the women we love, who are now finally able to break the fourth wall? In.

The first season of RHUGT was full of current Housewives who have been some of the longest running of all time, and it was fun and cute. Not a lot of drama but that was OK; they are interesting enough to watch without having to "make moments." When they broke the fourth wall, they gave us all a glimpse of how the show works and what the network likes to see. It was great.

Then we got Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: The Ex-Wives Club.

Suddenly, I found myself looking forward to Thursday mornings, waking up in the best mood knowing that today was the day we got a new episode. What did these crazy women have in store for us? Sure, yeah, you can say this group of women are the ones "thirstiest" to get back on their respective shows, but they also bring the entertainment. These aren't a bunch of Braunwyn Windhamburkes or Siggy Flickers who really just came in too hot and burned out fast because, well, the audience could sense they weren't being real. The cast of RHUGT2 are professionals. A group of hilarious, dynamic women who only have to be themselves. We're all hooked. And I think Bravo is taking notice.

Earlier this week, it was announced that Taylor Armstrong of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and RHUGT2, is joining the cast of Real Housewives of Orange County as the first ever Housewife to crossover into another city. And that tells me that Bravo realizes the power in the OGs, who really know how the game is played because they act like there is no game. As Tamra Judge says, "Vicki [Gunvalson] and Ramona [Singer] act like every season is their first," and that is what you want from a Housewife. Someone who comes in with no agenda and is just who they are whether we cringe at their behavior or not.

The integration of the OGs has refilled my love tank for Real Housewives again! It's gotten me excited to watch the shows live and to tune into Watch What Happens Live! as well.

I mean, to see Andy Cohen relax and nod and wink to the viewers when someone says something crazy is just the best. He would always say that when OGs are on, it feels like he can take the night off. You can feel the good energy.

It's just been really nice to keep up with all the girls again, to check in with them, and see how they are now after years off their shows. I love that they're still able to be entertaining and real. And I'm glad, with the Taylor crossover news, that it seems like we might be getting more of the OGs in our future.

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