Poor Phaedra, once again opening an episode by arriving on the scene bearing a peace-offering. She showed up at Kandi's boutique with what appeared to be a homemade carrot cake. Apology accepted! This woman certainly does know how to lead with humility and it was clear that she was mortified to have so offended Miss Joyce. NeNe, not so much. "But NeNe was a stripper!" she countered sensibly, when Kandi brought up her surprise over Leakes leaving the party in a righteous huff. "She showed her cervix for a quarter." With lines like that, is it any wonder that Phaedra seems to be quickly rising the charts for fan favorite of season 4?
There was a fashion show at the Atlanta botanical gardens which meant that the Housewives were finally going to see Cynthia in her element. Sadly, her element is butchering names and issuing weary corrections. After last night's episode Cynthia probably just halved her speaking-engagement fee. Take it away, Phaedra: "Everyone knows you want to look at models, not really hear them." After the show we got our first look at Marlo, an apparent socialite, and her NFL boyfriend, Charles Grant. Intros were made, hug, hug, kiss, kiss. It allowed for yet another opportunity for the women to snicker over NeNe, who may have had a brief encounter with Grant, behind her back. Careful, ladies. It is starting to seem like everyone's most beloved topic of conversation is indeed NeNe, and such group-bashing grows tedious fast. That said, Sheree does a mean impression of an apparently hypocritical NeNe cussing out Gregg. "I have-uh nevuh did you wrong!"
At the Bailey Agency, Mal continued to break my heart. But however thick the tension was between sisters, Cynthia just wanted to make sure that Mal was still going to answer phones. Of course she'd have to sit on a box because they never did get that receptionist's chair together but that's what professionals do, right? "No, I'm not keeping it professional," clarified Mal. "I'm keeping it you're my sister and I said I'm going to help you and I'm going to help you." Mal drooped, Cynthia sighed and once again brought up how she would never talk smack about her sister's marriage, which was obviously in its own way talking smack. Stop! pleaded Barbara, who looked lovely in a new hairstyle. (Can she give Miss Joyce some pointers?) Just as everyone had calmed down Cynthia decided that would be the perfect time to bring up news of Peter's bunk Bar One investor and that she was now once again considering giving the man money herself. Mal broke down in tears, which did strike me as a little excessive. Cynthia knows she promised everyone she'd never lend Peter money again, but "I also promised to go through for better or for worse." That's why they tried to hide the marriage certificate, ya ding dong!
I could watch Sheree play soccer with the darling Kairo and Kaleigh all day. Their dad showed up, which was nice enough for a while because it allowed Kaleigh the opportunity to school him with her ball skills. Soon, though, Sheree and her ex sat down at a picnic table, so Sheree could insist that he finally start ponying up some child support. Bob Whitfield wasn't having any of it. Earmuffs, kids! "They got a nice place," their dad dumbly insisted. "They got rooms. They got their own bedrooms." I thought Sheree did a pretty admirable job holding her temper in check, though I did keep wishing this conversation was happening at a wine bar and not 10 feet away from their kids. "I'm not paying you nothing," Bob finally growled, so Sheree tossed a bottle of water at him and stormed off. "Evil," her ex said, as the droplets of water singed off of him. "To the core."
Meanwhile, Kim beached herself on the sofa next to Brielle in the pink-bubble room for a good mother-daughter talk. "I don't want this baby to tear our family apart," said Brielle, with kind of heartbreaking directness. "I feel like you're going to lose interest in Arianna and I." Kim explained in a private interview that Brielle associates a new baby with turmoil because Kim was going through a divorce around Arianna's birth. (I'm confused. Was she divorcing Arianna's father or leaving Brielle's for Arianna's?) Somehow the conversation quickly segued from Brielle's sweet anxiety to Kim assuring her daughter that breast-feeding would help her shed the baby weight fast. That was pretty much all we got in terms of Kim's story line last night, as Bravo is clearly trying to whet her fans' appetites for the wedding spin-off.
NEXT: Sweatin' with the oldies at Bar One.