Okay, we are off to a bad start. The recap from last week is 10 minutes long, no exaggeration. It was so long that I thought I was watching a rerun, not a new show. This tells me they do not have enough new footage, and it’s only the second week of the series. After watching the whole episode, which I will review in a minute, I found it to be uneventful and boring compared to last week’s show. I will be curious to see what other fans think, but I found it a big let down.
Renee goes to Carla’s for dinner and they chat about the party. Carla makes up a lame excuse for not telling Renee that Karen was coming. She claims she didn’t want Renee to come with a chip on her shoulder, she wanted her to get there, have fun and then be blindsided by Karen’s appearance. Renee is quick to forgive Carla, they have a long friendship of 20 years, but she is pissed at Drita for the way she acted. Renee is also pissed at Karen, but then admits she is confused by what Karen said about her father, Sammy. She seems to think Karen has a point when she says everyone liked Sammy as long as he was killing people, but when he cooperated with the Feds they hated him; which is worse? Carla interprets this as Renee really wants to be friends with Karen and only broke ties with her because her father told her to years ago. Boring!
Back at Renee’s house, AJ shows up with his father, Junior. Renee has to discuss AJ’s report card with Junior. She is very upset because AJ broke the rule of getting an 80 in every subject. “He got a 75 in English!,” Renee yells in her loud, raspy voice. AJ corrects her, “It was art, I’m not Van Gogh.” Renee seems caught off guard by AJ’s reasonable remark. However, there has to be a punishment regardless, because he broke the all 80’s rule. Two weekends of punishment and they will see what the next report card brings. If he gets all 80’s next time he will get a new car. A new car for 80‘s on a report card? Give me a break! Can it get more boring? You decide.
Karen is moving into her new apartment. She is talking to Rina, whose father was a member of Graziano’s crew. They laugh about the party and how Renee left. They discuss Karen’s new six figure book deal. Karen says it’s about life as the child of a mobster and how she felt bad for her father’s victims. She neglects to mention that while in Arizona she allegedly participated in his huge ecstasy trafficking ring, for which she pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation, but maybe she forgot her legal troubles already. So far the episode is a snooze fest.
Carla’s husband Joe calls from prison. He has a request. He wants her to pick up one of those collage picture frames so he can put the kids pictures in it from when they were 3, 4, 5 , 6 and 7 years old in it. This way he can look at it all the time and stop doing stupid things…like stock fraud. The kids still don’t know he is in jail, they think he has been away working. Let’s hope they don’t get wind of it from their friends at school, whose mothers may be watching the show and gossiping about it. Ok, this was another totally lack luster segment. Now, I am kicking myself for complaining about the 10 minute recap because, so far, that was the best part.
Off to Drita’s house. She is talking to Gizma about her life. She tells her how her dad disowned her for marrying Lee, saying “don’t even come to my grave!” She is the only one in the family who didn’t marry an Albanian, and to top it off, not only didn’t she marry an Albanian, but she married a wise guy. She claims she still loves Lee. Excuse me while I take a minute to splash some cold water on my face so I can stay awake for the rest of this episode.
Back at Renee’s house AJ comes home and doesn’t make eye contact with his mother. According to Renee, this can only mean one thing, “trouble.” She confronts AJ telling him she knows it’s report card day. Report card day??? I find it hard to believe it’s report card day so soon. That would mean that at least six or more weeks have passed since the last report card and it only seems like a day or two. But, in any case, there is trouble. The all 80 rule has been broken again. AJ says they made a mistake on the report card. Renee grabs the report card and sees a 46 in gym! Or maybe it’s a 55. Either way she starts yelling at him to call his father and go upstairs because he has an attitude. I doubt AJ really failed gym, he works out at a gym with his dad. It’s been my experience that kids that are getting above 80 in major subjects do not fail gym. Besides being boring, they must think we have stupid written on our foreheads.
Lee calls Drita from prison, they talk about putting six pears in the next box. Drita hasn’t visited him in six months, and it’s a six hour drive to the prison. That’s three 6’s…the sign of the devil. Lee meets with the parole board this month to see if he can get out early. However, if they deny his request, he may have 4 or 5 years more to serve. Drita cannot believe her ears. She thought he was coming home in in a few months and now she feels sick. She decides she needs to go out for a drink with Carla and tell her what happened. They discuss the waiting game and how long is too long to wait? They even ask the bartender. No one asked me, but I think she waited too long already. She is wasting the best years of her life waiting for Lee, 10 out of the last 12 years he has been locked up. When he comes out who is to say he won’t leave her for someone else? How long is too long Drita? Do you really have to ask? This segment was irritating; stupidity always makes me irritated.
Renee takes AJ to go meet his father at the gym. Junior doesn’t show up and doesn’t answer his phone. He has stood AJ up. AJ is used to it and not upset. Renee gets all choked up as she leaves numerous messages on Junior’s phone. She pops in to see her therapist. She says she wants to kill Junior, but then she takes it back because the therapist would have to report it. The therapist asks her, “Where do you come in?” Renee breaks down in a watershed of tears. She says she doesn’t matter, she never mattered. She just wants AJ to be happy and in college and Junior to be far away. I wish they could have gotten Billy Crystal, from “Analyze This,” to play the part of the therapist. But they didn’t, so this segment was boring and annoying.
The concluding segment, as if they saved the best for last, is back at Drita’s house. She is so furious with Lee she decides she needs a night of drinking and dancing. She goes to the club with Karen and they are “jumpin’ jumpin’” I got the impression that Karen was secretly happy that Drita is having issues with Lee. She claims she can’t tell her to leave him because that would make her look like a “crazy ex-girlfriend.” The next day, Lee calls to ask about his box. He never got it. Drita tells him she is cleaning and needs to know when he is coming home. She must feel stupid for waiting so long. He tells her he doesn’t know. She yells that she is done waiting for him. As for his box, she tells him she ate it. They throw a few profanities back and forth at each other and then Drita takes her phone and slams it on the floor. Nice touch of drama at the very end, but not enough to sustain my interest or keep me awake.
The title of this episode is misleading. If it refers to Karen, she didn’t agitate anyone this week. What we saw was a lot of uninteresting communication with the three husbands: Hector, Joe, and Lee. I would rename this segment, “The Bastards Can Go To Hell.” I think Jenn should hire me as a consultant since I have so much constructive criticism to offer. However, since she calls her production company “JustJenn” I don’t see that happening any time soon.