Greetings from 35,000 ft., where I'm riding the middle seat on a packed flight from Atlanta to San Francisco. In popular street slang, this seat is often referred to as riding bitch.
My wife does not let me use that word. So to many, that would make me a bitch. NeNe throws this word around like Lew Zealand throws around mackerel. Yes, that's a rather obscure reference to an old school Muppets character, and I hope one person just spit out their coffee.
Where am I going with this?
Well, I'm going to the heart of what this show is about.
Housewives allows us to cast judgement, with minimal fact, about what's right and wrong in relationships. It lets us validate our own family values and virtually stone those who don't follow our own beliefs. We steal a peek into what should be a fabulously easy life; in contrast we find our own lives are good, and that money, and maybe even success, doesn't equal happiness.
The finale gave us one last chance to see if these women are more than just train wrecks and for the most part we saw some good from those who we have been so harsh on.
NeNe decides to move on from her DNA test shocker and we see nothing more than a happy family, just like the beginning of the show. Bryce graduates and gets a car. Well deserved. I'm sure there will be those that think that's spoiling the kid, but it's their family values, not ours. Greg plays the role of Kissinger ( I would have said Jesse Jackson, but don't want anyone calling me a racist over this blog... again) and squashes the Kim-NeNe war. Or at least we are led to believe. Sources tell me the reunion show is Springer-esque. And we are left with feeling a bit sad for NeNe as she was clearly upset about the situation with Kim. But we know she will go on.
DeShawn really just floated through the season. I think we only saw emotion from her when her fundraiser failed, and then tonight, when I got the icky feeling that she will have trouble coping with only a few cars. I enjoyed when we got to hear Eric talk about something we haven't seen yet on this show. Passion. He just wants to be around basketball, it's his passion. What's DeShawns? I'm not sure. Lisa also shows us passion in a very loving way this week. We see a drastically different reaction to adversity than Deshawn's response. She isn't concerned about Ed making money playing football. She is concerned for his safety and well being. I'll never think of football in the same way and I have to thank both Lisa and Ed for giving us a neat glimpse into a part of an athlete's life we don't usually see. Definitely the coolest couple this season.
Sheree leaves us with the flip side of passion, or at least an in-between state. I don't get the feeling that designing clothes is her passion and neither did Michael Knight. But Sheree got a bit warmer with each episode. Hotter actually as she just continued to look more in shape week after week. She needs to get her homegirl Kim on that routine. We get to see a bit more of her kids, who seem perfect. All A's gets you to Hawaii! That's an awesome way to spend that big settlement. I think traveling is so important to young people.
And then there's Kim. I'm not going to rough up Kim anymore. Without knowing it, she has become the keystone character of the series. And I won't hate on people's success. She most likely won't be a country singing star, but I wouldn't be surprised to see her on TV again. I felt a genuine moment when her oldest was giving her a good lesson. Kim has been gifted with that reality television gene. She was herself and that wrote the script. She doesn't need coaching or training to be that real.
Food-wise we really did not see much of the Real restaurants of Atlanta this season. So with our episodes wrapped, here is my list of must eats if you're in the ATL soon:
Bacchanalia. This long -ime Atlanta fine dining restaurant always finds a way to keep food simple beautiful and modern. It's expensive, but you get what you pay for. Fritti. IMO, the best pizza in Atlanta.
Pura Vida. A small tapas restaurant with a mom and pop feel serving some of Atlanta's most creative food.
Shauns. A chef-run brasserie where you get great ingredients for a good price. The definition of a chef-run local hot spot.
Tap. Atlanta's first gastro pub and an awesome patio to enjoy some great beers in the heart of midtown.
Holeman and Finch. Serving a serious cocktail list and some cheffy bar food, this place belongs more in London or Barcelona than Buckhead.
Eno. My protege runs this kitchen focusing on European inspiration and great wine. Ask for Eli!
JCT kitchen. The best example of new southern cooking in Atlanta.
Rathbuns Steak. A chef-run modern steakhouse. Home. Ask for me! I won't be there, but it will either get you a visit to the kitchen, or kicked out immediately! On second thought, ask for Jef.
Flip. My take on the hamburger. Come on, I had to throw this one in here!
As always, keep up with my travels on www.RichardBlais.net , and read my take on the new season of Top Chef right here at bravotv.com ! rB