O.C. housewives’ drama ends as New York housewives return with a new woman

Tonight, Bravo ushers out one set of crazy women and exchnages them for another as The Real Housewives of Orange County concludes its fourth season at 10 p.m. ET, and The Real Housewives of New York City debuts its second season at 11.

Starting at 10 this morning, Bravo reairs the O.C.’s latest season, from Shane’s verbal abuse and physical threats toward his mother to Gretchen Rossi’s response to her fiance Jeff Beitzel’s leukemia, which drew the scorn of other housewives even as they enabled that response.

All that drama, by the way, takes just nine hours a week to film, at least in Jeana Keough’s case. “I spend three hours three times a week during the summer filming ‘The Real Housewives of Orange County.’ Otherwise, I am a Realtor and a mom 24/7,” she told the O.C. Register.

In New York, Kelly Killoren Bensimon joins the cast, which retains the other five housewives. This season starts with a war of words in tabloids. However, New York critics aren’t very fond of the new season, mostly because they say it’s boring when compared to the other two versions.

The New York Times’ Ginia Bellafante says that “humility, intelligence, restraint, style … are eclipsed by money-grubbing witlessness and big-carbon-footprint living” and that’s “fraudulently offensive to a certain kind of New Yorker who would never actually envy someone like Alex.” The New York Daily News’ David Hinckley says that New York “doesn’t have better ‘real housewives’” than L.A. or Atlanta. And The New York Post’s Linda Stasi rips the whole franchise, calling it “Bravo’s demeaning, anti-female franchise” and saying the new season is “endlessly boring.”

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