It all began with newcomer Braunwyn Windham-Burke getting caught in a lie by Tamra Judge, who can be scary AF in these kinds of situations. We later learned why Braunwyn lied, only after she tearfully confronted her mom and later confided in Tamra and Shannon Beador.
After that, Emily Simpson's husband, Shane, returned to the house after spending 10 days in a hotel room, studying for the bar exam. The encounter was -- how should we put this -- terrible? So Emily vented to her mother-in-law, Pary, and asked for advice.
We also saw Kelly Dodd have quite the awkward lunch with her then-boyfriend, Dr. Brian Reagan, before Gina Kirschenheiter accidentally missed her mandatory court appearance following her DUI arrest. She balled her eyes out and confided in Shannon. The two bonded over their broken marriages.
While still on their Los Angeles adventure, Tamra pulled Braunwyn aside to let her know she heard that Braunwyn had reached out to Tamra's enemies/former "RHOC" stars, Gretchen Rossi and Lizzie Rovsek. The two were heavily involved in perpetuating a rumor that Tamra's husband, Eddie, was gay.
"I heard you contacted Lizzie and Gretchen to talk to them," Tamra said, after asking Braunwyn if she was a "troublemaker." Braunwyn insisted she wasn't, saying Lizzie was best friends with her best friend of 35 years, Sam.
"And Sam said, 'Since you recently moved back here, I have these two great friends that I'm friends with, and I think you guys would get along,'" Braunwyn explained.
"I can't stop you from doing anything, but you understand what these girls have done to me?" Tamra replied. "They were part of trying to take down my husband." As Tamra started saying, "If you wanna be friends with me," Braunwyn finished the thought, "I can't be friends with her."
Braunwyn said she understood and maintained she wasn't the one to reach out. But Tamra was hesitant to trust the newbie because, after all, she did run and tell Kelly about the "train" rumor.
Shannon overheard the conversation and filled in Kelly, saying Emily had texts proving Braunwyn was the one who made the first move. "I have screenshots," Emily, who's very good friends with Lizzie, told the girls. The two conversations then merged into one, big awkward one.
Shannon put Braunwyn on the spot, saying she had told her she was on the receiving end of the messages from Gretchen and Lizzie. Tamra was heated. "If you're a f--king liar, I need to know!" she shouted.
Braunwyn was so uncomfortable. Before she knew there were screenshots, she tried to say she wasn't sure of the order of events, but Shannon blurted out, "We see the texts that you reached out to her." Braunwyn's face dropped. She stumbled over her words, trying to get out a semblance of a sentence, but Tamra wasn't having it. "But you brought it up," she interrupted.
"Let's get on the bus. Show the text," Shannon urged.
Granted, the texts were harmless! (To Gretchen: "Hi there, I hope you don't mind me reaching out. If you're free, give me a call. Or meet up for coffee. LMK." To Lizzie: "Hi there! We have a mutual friend in common. Sam teaches at my kids' school and says you're super sweet!!!") But Tamra didn't care. She was upset Braunwyn had lied.
"Braunwyn, come on!" Shannon shouted. "I've been nothing but kind to you, so I feel like I'm stupid right now!" Tamra added, "You're telling me that this girl reached out to you and come to find out that you reached out to her makes me feel like you're a liar!" By this point, Braunwyn was in tears.
"You know what? I'm sorry. I f--ked up," Braunwyn said. "I'm a liar. And I didn't lie on purpose..."
"You lied on accident?" Tamra fired back. Braunwyn was overwhelmed and walked away. Eventually, Tamra felt bad and went to go comfort her. The two decided to move past the situation, but it was still on both of their minds.
Later, Braunwyn took her mom out to dinner. As we learned from the season premiere, Dr. Deb is quite the character. She was in a rock band when Braunwyn was younger, leaving her daughter to fend for herself on numerous occasions. Braunwyn felt she had to grow up too fast, but her mom begs to differ. At 4 years old, Braunwyn rode the bus to and from school. She wore her house key around her neck and let herself in. Her mom even copped to taking Braunwyn to bars and asking the bartenders to put milk in her baby bottle.
So at dinner, Braunwyn told her mom about the ordeal with Tamra. Immediately, Dr. Deb sided with Tamra, noting Braunwyn had indeed lied. When she asked why she lied, Braunwyn got personal.
"Why do I lie instead of hurting someone's feelings? Because I just want to be liked," she told her mom. "It's hard for me."
"Do you think I don't like you?" Dr. Deb asked.
"No! Maybe..." Braunwyn replied, trying not to cry. In her confessional, she explained, "Growing up, all I ever wanted was a mom that always put me first, and I never had that. She was so focused on her own career and her own life that there was a sense that no matter how much she loves me, she'll always love herself more."
Braunwyn told her mom she was able to maintain only superficial friendships because it was easier for her to keep up her emotional walls. She said she felt she was "shuffled around a lot as a kid," but her mom disagreed because the people she was "shuffled around to" were family and friends. Because of that, Braunwyn says she tells white lies to avoid conflict and to protect herself. She also told her mom that's a big reason she wanted so many kids (she has seven), because her love with them "isn't complicated."
Later, Braunwyn reluctantly opened up to Tamra and Shannon about why she lied and explained a little bit about her upbringing. They both sympathized. Braunwyn also said this group of ladies was forcing her to face things she hadn't ever needed to speak about.
Emily Faces Marital Problems, Shane Serves Up Sarcasm in Confessional
It's no secret the Simpsons have a troubled marriage, but Shane certainly does nothing to help himself when cameras are present. After almost two weeks of not seeing his wife, Shane was cold as ice when the two sat down to talk. Their hug hello was downright painful.
"Are you ready to clean up and cook?" he asked his wife, who's already a practicing attorney. She sighed but smiled through it.
"Come sit! I haven't seen you for like..." she began, before he finished her sentence. "It was just a week."
"How'd you do today?" she asked. Taking a sip of his drink, Shane replied, "I did fine."
"I know, but you need to tell me more. Like how you feel," she insisted. Taking another sip from his drink, he said, "I feel ready for dinner."
Emily sighed as the two went downstairs for dinner. She went to hug Shane, which he met with "I need to eat."
"You don't see me for 10 days, and you don't care?" she later vented to the camera. "And it makes you question what's going on in this marriage that there's not more excitement about seeing each other."
When Shane asked what Emily had planned for the next day, she said she was going to work and getting her nails done with Gina.
"Doesn't Gina have her court date tomorrow?" he asked. "Is that why you're doing it with her?"
"No, it got continued," Emily replied.
More on that in a minute.
During one of his first confessionals ever, Shane was downright rude. He grinned and chuckled when an off-camera producer asked him if he had missed Emily while he was studying.
"This is where the sarcasm comes in. Certainly I missed her!" he replied with a laughed. "If I tell you the truth, she's gonna be pissed, and at the same time, I don't wanna fib. I don't really cry myself to sleep because I miss my family. I just do what I gotta do. And I know that there's a time where it'll be done and I can come back home and I can be with my family and kids."
Later, Emily went to Shane's mom to chat. "Pary is amazing, and a lot of times, I feel like she provides the emotional support that I need that sometimes I don't get from Shane," Emily told the camera. "No matter what Shane and I go through, I feel like Pary is there for me."
Pary advised Emily to not argue about things with Shane unless they're important or necessary. "You know in the bank what they told us," Pary said, "was when you get mad, just smile and do it. And then go to the bathroom, really, and open the toilet, and whatever you were going to tell them, tell the toilet."
Kelly and her plastic surgeon-turned-boyfriend went to lunch, where the topic of engagement rings -- not necessarily marriage -- came up in conversation. Kelly told Dr. Brian the girls had been asking her if he was going to propose.
"I'm in love with Dr. Brian," she said in her confessional. "I found my perfect match! I'm ready to lock it down."
The two also spoke about the "train" rumor, which Dr. Brian found ridiculous. "I've never even had sex on a choo choo train," Kelly noted. Dr. Brian urged her not to take the rumor so personally and to make a joke out of it whenever it comes up again. He also advised Kelly to have a serious conversation about it with Jolie and tell her it was a lie.
"Brian's really good at putting things in perspective," she told the camera. "He's not into the drama, into the bullcrap. He says, 'This is what's important, not this other BS.' Dr. Brian gives me the fulfillment that I have lacked for many, many years. And I really want to have Jolie see what a loving relationship looks like."
Gina Misses Her Court Appearance, Bonds with Shannon
Shannon FaceTimed Tamra to let her know there was a warrant out for Gina'a arrest because she had missed her court appearance following her DUI arrest.
"You are not going to believe this," Shannon began. "Remember how I asked Gina if she had spoke to my attorney friend that I had referred her to? And she said, 'No, I haven't yet.' He just called me, and he said that he was in court today, and someone told him Gina missed her court date, and the judge has issued a warrant out for her arrest."
Meanwhile, Gina was home with her parents, sobbing. She had no idea she had to show up to court that day and said she wished her attorney would have explained the process a little better.
"My attorney put in to postpone this arraignment date, but he didn't check to confirm that it actually was accepted, and it was denied," she told the camera. "So as far as the court's concerned, I just didn't show up."
Shannon told Tamra she didn't blame Gina at all. Gina hired an expert and expected him to take care of things properly. "Why didn't her attorney friend Emily say, 'No, I think you need to be there'?" Shannon said, prompting Tamra to ask, "Why isn't her attorney friend Emily representing her?"
After hanging up with Tamra, Shannon called Gina, who was still a mess. Shannon tried to have her look at the bright side of things, like having "better representation" moving forward.
The two then met up in person, where Gina cried and thanked Shannon profusely. Her attorney friend was able to get Gina's warrant recalled -- three hours before sheriffs were planning on arresting her.
Gina also revealed to Shannon that her husband, Matt, had had an affair before she joined the show. She cried as she recalled witnessing Shannon struggle with the same things Gina was going through, only the latter had to go through them silently.
"Last year, I feel like I had almost like animosity towards you 'cause I felt like I was going through the same pain that I could see you in, but like nobody could see it," Gina explained. "How you said you were kind of jealous a little bit of this 'perfect' divorce,' I was kind of jealous of the fact that you could just express how you felt and be in pain openly."
Crying, Shannon grabbed for Gina's hand. "Girlfriend, you have been put through the wringer. And when -- not if -- when you come out of this, you are gonna know what a survivor you are. Because I never thought that I would be sitting here saying that I've never been happier. But it's gonna happen for you. You're like a year behind me, I think, I kind of feel like. Anything that you need, I will be here for you."
"The Real Housewives of Orange County" airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on Bravo.