Oh man, this Mama Joyce stuff is getting so dark it’s verging on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills territory. I had gotten so used to the pleasantries of Arthur the Tiniest Boyfriend and the non-factor that was Conya the Landlord that I forgot about the trips to Dramatown that are these shows’ bread and butter. The first half of this episode felt like it was mostly biding time until Mama Joyce lost her damn mind. But at least it spent some of that time with Nene trying to figure out how many of her friends are eskimo sisters and Porsha stumbling around a CVS. That’s the Atlanta I know.
Also, it looks like I had some name confusion in the last recap -- apologies for that! Hopefully I can keep my Porshas and Phaedras, Apollos and Arthurs straight tonight. But with the addition of Mama Joyce’s equally terrifying sisters and about 20 important guest characters this episode, I'm a little nervous. Step into the madness with me, won’t you?
Kandi’s best friend/assistant/possible-future-homicide-by-Mama-Joyce-victim, Carmon, comes over to sit in Kandi’s bedazzled living room while she looks at wedding magazines and Todd plays pool. This must be the scandalously inappropriate behavior between Carmon and Todd that has Atlanta all abuzz. Kandi tells Carmon that Mama Joyce apologized for her comments about the engagement ring and promised she would be more open-minded toward her engagement. I must have missed that episode, because the last time I saw Mama Joyce she was threatening Todd with a Marvin Gaye song and, I think, brandishing a blunt object.
Carmon, who is not brainwashed (and also scares me a little), tells Kandi that her mom “isn’t going to be happy until you have absolutely nobody around you but her.” Ding, ding, ding, you are correct! And in what I hope isn’t Bravo foreshadowing anything, Todd adds on that he needs Kandi to stand up for him to her mother (the “or else I’m out of here” is implicit).
Potential new cast-wife alert: Nene and Gregg go to visit their friends Mynique (if you think I don’t type “Mystique" and have to go back and correct it every single time, you would be wrong) and Chuck. Gregg does some sort of Drake-inspired call and response with a confused Chuck:
Gregg: Where’d we start?!
Gregg: Where’d we start?!
Chuck: From the bottom?
Gregg: NOW WE HERE!
Bless his heart, it was delightful. They sit down to lunch and Nene tells Mynique she wants her to spend time with the people she hangs out with, AKA, audition for season 7 because Kenya/Porsha have proved risky investments. Nene figures the best way to preview her housewife pals to Mynique is to figure out how many of them have slept with her husband. Obviously. Chuck confirms that he previously “hung out” with Kandi but he’s a little coyer about Phaedra. Nene says Phaedra had a bit of a rep in Athens, where they’re all from, and calls her a nickname I don't think I'm allowed to print here. Chuck declares, “I never had sexual intercourse with Phaedra Parks.” Listen, I was 8 when Bill Clinton first played that card, but even then, I knew what he was getting at. Tread lightly, Chuck.
NEXT: Will Apollo finally admit that sexting his wife's friends is just a teensy bit wrong?