Bravotv.com: What did you really think of the Casino Royale night – and those singers? Do you still talk to Katie Rost?
Ashley Darby: I think you mean the Casino night because there wasn't anything royal about it, but it was still a fun time! Michael loves to try his hand at Black Jack, so it was nice to have his bet go to a charity versus a mega casino. The singers are certainly not something we encounter at the Aria Hotel but I think they were a good addition to the event. While it's doubtful those young performers will make it to Broadway, it helped to create a connection to Imagination Stage, the benefiting charity. I didn't know a few of the 'Wives doubled as American Idol judges, but I commend anyone who can get on stage and belt a tune - t'aint easy! Unfortunately, I haven't talked to Katie in quite some time. She became rather reclusive after issues in the media arose about her dating life, so I hope she's happy and in a better place.
Bravotv.com: Tell us about meeting new ‘Wife Monique Samuels and your first impression.
AD: Funnily enough, Michael met Chris before I had a chance to meet Monique at the event! He came over to me talking about this really cool guy he'd met who used to play for the Redskins (he's a die-hard fan). Then I met Monique who looked ravishing in that mesh gown - the pageant girl in me was swooning - and we clicked. I learned that she loves to smoke cigars and she spent about 15 minutes explaining to me how to cut a cigar properly, how to puff without inhaling - all that good stuff. It went in one ear and out the other, but I knew we were kindred spirits.
Bravotv.com: You say in this week’s episode that you feel judged by your husband, how does that make you feel? Looking back do you still feel that way?
AD: Wow, that was very hard to watch because I had a flashback to how I felt right in that moment. Perhaps it's because I didn't grow up in a home with married parents, but I had this idea that a marriage was about separating feelings of love and security from money. The foundation of a loving couple was meant to trump the dollar bills, but Michael and I blurred the lines when we decided to open an exceptionally risky business together. Now we don't only have the regular pressures of marriage, we have a 29 year age gap and a substantial investment in a restaurant. We are still working on this, so I realize that it wasn't judgment rather us not understanding each other's expectations in this venture. It's still a constant battle.
Bravotv.com: What do you think about Gizelle Bryant apologizing? Do you think these two can move on?
AD: I hope the Devil knows how to ice skate because Gizelle Bryant has officially apologized after swearing up and down that Charrisse had nothing coming. It was a big move on her part to admit that she violated Charrisse Jackson Jordan's trust, especially after going through a public separation herself. Gizelle knows that children are the actual causalities in a divorce, so I'm glad she took a step back. Charrisse has a big heart and is very forgiving, so I am optimistic there's a pot of gold waiting for these two at the end of the rainbow.
Bravotv.com: Do you think Karen Huger was being messy when she brought up Robyn Dixon’s comments on Gizelle?
AD: Robyn has been very open with how she feels about Gizelle's actions, and I think it shows the nature of their friendship that she voiced concern. Fake friends brush it all under the rug and look the other way, but your true blues will call you out when you've dropped your marbles. At the same time, the Grand Dame knew what she was doing when she stepped down from her pedestal to stir up dust with the peasants! I guess empty-nesting has left her restless and she hasn't found knitting yet, but the last time I checked Karen preached about not being petty for pretty's sake. Here we are in a time of peace after so much drama in the group, and Karen had to open Pandora's box - can't we just enjoy the sound of quiet before the bombs go off again? Apparently not.