With The Real Housewives Awards in full swing, we've asked celebrities and pop culture icons to share why they love our hit franchise. This week, Public Morals actor Michael Rapaport, on what makes Real Housewives of New York's Bethenny Frankel stand out from the crowd, and why he loves the Atlanta ladies so much.
Bethenny is, I think, the greatest housewife because of her gift for gab. I think she's the most consistently entertaining and she is a level above [the rest]. Her sense of humor and her ability to talk sh** just beats out some of the other greats. She's a real New York girl. She's a ball breaker. She is nuts and her story, her personal story, is the most [touching]. The Housewives show is very American and her story is truly an only in America story. It's like Rocky.
[For Best Comeback], it's Bethenny. She brings the noise. She brings the boys. She brings the toys. She brings it all. Bethenny is a force. She's like when [Michael] Jordan came back to the [Chicago] Bulls. She's a heavyweight. And she came wacky. The first part of the season, she was falling apart [and] crying all over the place. But still feisty and mouthy, which is why she's great.
[Dorinda Medley] fit right in [as a Rookie of the Year nominee]. She was feisty. She was funny. She's got an interesting way of speaking when she's had a little alcohol, and she's got a lot of heart. She's got a great backstory.
I feel like some of the Joe and Teresa [Giudice] conversations are just incredible [on Real Housewives of New Jersey]. The drama, the Italian-American[-ness] of it all. I'm a sucker for the Italian-American operatics. It was at opera level. It was beyond Housewives. It was beyond a movie. It was almost like you were watching an opera.
I would say what remains to be seen, I think, is if Atlanta's going to survive without NeNe Leakes. You could say her absence will prove her greatness or not... But she will be hard to replace. I have to say, although I'm a native New Yorker — and it's hard to go against New York — I have to go with Atlanta [as my favorite city]. The wigs are wackier and the asses are bigger. But it was hard to choose.
[Lifetime Achievement has] got to go to NeNe 'cause she's been with the show. She never left the show. She's a star. She's a true basket case. Although I feel like she hasn't been very nice, and I feel like she's really feeling herself as far as her performance — she truly deserves it. Bethenny doesn't deserve the Lifetime Achievement Award because she left.
[Miss Congeniality nominee] Yolanda Foster [has great public morals]. She's really classy. I don't think she's ever uttered a bad word. I might be forgetting something. She's dealt with some stuff. She's got those daughters [Gigi and Bella] and she just seems [like] the way she's handled some things and the way they were coming at her on that rip this year, she gets it.