In the ninth episode of “The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City,” Mary Cosby only interacts with one of the other Housewives. But — with a huge assist from an imbibing Whitney Rose — Mary still manages to ruin Sharrieff Shah’s surprise birthday party.
Mary’s not invited
Jen Shah tells Whitney about the surprise hip-hop/golf themed birthday party she’s planning for her husband, Sharrieff, at Topgolf in Midvale. She’s not inviting Mary, which is hardly a surprise.
Mary says she doesn’t care — but she clearly does, because she starts to cry as she’s telling her husband about it.
“It’s hurtful because the girls don’t like the way [Jen]’s treating me, but they’re too afraid to tell her,” Mary says. “And it feels like they all took her side.”
When Whitney visits Mary, there’s some revisionist history going on. Mary claims she has never started anything with Jen, when viewers saw her do just that in Episodes 4 and 5. Mary exaggerates her efforts to heal the rift, leaving out that she called Jen a liar and said she’s done with her.
And Mary claims, without any evidence, that Meredith Marks and Lisa Barlow told her they’re afraid of Jen and, thus, refuse to come to Mary’s defense. (If the producers had video of that, they certainly would have included it.)
Whitney, however, believes every word. Because Whitney readily admits she’s afraid of Jen and her explosive temper. “I’m sorry that because we’ve ignored it, we’ve created a monster,” she says.
The real party monster
Jen’s plan to surprise her husband, an assistant football coach at the University of Utah, works out great. It looks like everyone is having a great time — including Vicki McBride, the wife of former Utah football coach Ron McBride, and one of Sharrieff’s former players, Brian Allen, who’s been on the rosters of half a dozen NFL teams.
Whitney decides that the party would be the perfect time to tell Jen that the other women are afraid of her and are talking behind her back. She is “building up the liquid courage to talk to Jen” because “it’s the right thing to do so that we can all get on the same page and move on.”
It’s so bizarre that the timing seems staged for the show. And, seemingly out of character, Heather Gay decides to join because, “I love Jen. I don’t want her to be upset, but she deserves to know Meredith and Lisa are talking behind her back.”
Again, the only evidence we’ve seen of this is Mary’s word. And they’re going to do this in the middle of Sharrieff’s birthday party?
After pulling Jen aside, a clearly inebriated Whitney can’t seem to get the words out. So Heather blurts out the accusation, and Whitney tells Jen that, according to Mary, Meredith and Lisa said they are “scared of you.”
Jen doesn’t take it well, although her response is appropriate: “You guys do know Mary is [expletive] cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs, right?” Jen says. “How do you believe Mary?”
And later, in a confessional, Jen observes that Whitney and Heather’s timing is terrible.
“This is going way out of hand,” Whitney says, oblivious to the fact that she’s the cause of the problem. And, she adds, “It’s not about Mary” — oblivious to the fact that it’s all about Mary.
Lisa and Meredith are both at the party. And they both flatly deny Mary’s story.
Lisa is extremely “irritated” with Whitney. “Ask me if I’m afraid of Jen and I’ll give you the answer. The answer is no,” she says.
“This is ridiculous,” Meredith adds. “I did not talk to Mary and say that I was afraid of Jen. Somebody is lying.”
Maybe it’s the alcohol, but Whitney seems incapable of understanding what they’re saying. And having already set off one explosion at a completely inappropriate time, Whitney decides it’s the perfect time to set off another.
“I don’t like to gossip, right?” Whitney says as a prelude to spreading more gossip in Meredith’s direction. “But Jen’s been insinuating that there might be a bigger story about your marriage.”
(That’s true. Jen has been insinuating that Meredith was seeing another man.)
Drunken Whitney then directs Jen to talk to Meredith “about what I shared,” but Meredith isn’t going to stick around for that. Not surprisingly, Jen is yelling at Whitney.
“Why are your friends saying they’re scared of you and not saying it to your face,” Whitney says, still oblivious to Lisa and Meredith’s denials. “As your friend, I wanted you to know that.” At her husband’s birthday party.
“Shut the [expletive] up about Mary!” Jen yells, throwing her drink and smashing the glass.
“I’m surprised she didn’t pick up Whitney and throw Whitney,” Lisa says.
Jen goes grabs Sharrieff and demands that they leave. He has no idea what’s happening. It’s a horrible end to what looked like a great party.
Lisa, meanwhile, is yelling at Whitney. “Because Mary said it doesn’t make it true,” Lisa says. Both she and Meredith tell Whitney they’re done with her.
“Now I’m the [expletive] a--h---,” Whitney says.
Why, yes. Yes you are.
Meeting Heather’s ex-husband
Viewers see Heather’s ex-husband, Billy, for the first time when he drops by on Valentine’s Day — and he doesn’t look particularly comfortable being on camera. He probably would’ve looked even less comfortable had he known what Heather would say about him in a confessional that’s cut into the scene.
She says she married him because he was “over 6 feet tall … cool … and rich.” And that “his family connection to Howard Hughes made him Mormon royalty.” (Has anyone used the term “Mormon royalty” before Heather introduced it on “RHOSLC”?)
But when they married, “It became immediately apparent that we were absolutely not compatible,” Heather says.
She recounts one time when she says Billy demanded they leave a movie theater because of the film’s sexual content, which she didn’t find objectionable. She says he then declined to be intimate with her, to “show me how to debaucherous I was.” And the marriage ended, she says, when she didn’t want to change plans for her daughter’s baptism “to accommodate his sister. And he said, ‘Fine, keep it when you want to have it and I’ll move out next week.’ I was the never-say-no girl. I said no. And he moved out, and that was it.”
Heather says she married to have children and “an eternal family. … So losing my husband to me was like losing everything. At times I’m thankful that Billy left me. But I’m still a divorcee, ostracized from my community and totally alone.”
Meredith and Seth — and Brooks
The Marks’ reconciliation seems to be going well. “I think we’re going to make it,” Meredith says. However, their 21-year-old son, Brooks, is uncomfortable with their mild displays of affection.
“When my parents say all this love stuff to each other, I find it genuinely revolting,” Brooks says. “Deep down inside, I know that they’re soul mates and I’m glad that they want to work through their issues. But still, it’s, like — ew!”
And he reminds them that “I’m in the bedroom below you guys. So if you do have sex — don’t do it. Go into a different room.”
Do the producers dislike Mary?
It sort of seems that way, in yet another episode. In this week’s episode, we see:
• Mary give her longtime housekeeper instructions on how to vacuum.
• In response to a question from an offscreen producer about how many homes she owns, Mary replies, “Oh, gosh, I don’t know. I never counted.” So she does. In addition to the “gigantic house” in Salt Lake City, she owns homes in Las Vegas, New York, Carmel, Ind., and Orlando, Fla.
“When we’re not there, they are empty. We don’t share,” says Mary — who is, remember, the “first lady” of the Faith Temple Pentecostal Church.
• Mary insists that Whitney put on shoe covers so as not to mess up her house. And Whitney’s mouth drops open when she sees Mary’s bedroom/closet. “I have a little bit of a shopping problem,” Mary says, adding, “Every closet in the house is full of my clothes.”
“If your clothes are taking over your 20,000-square-foot house,” Whitney says, “you might be a high-end hoarder.”
(I think 20,000 square feet is an exaggeration, BTW.)
• Jen convinces Sharrieff that they’re going to Popeye’s on his birthday, even though they’re headed for the big surprise party. “I know once he sees 150 of his closest friends and his family that flew in,” she says, ”he’s going to be totally fine without that 12 piece and biscuits.”
• Even before the big blow-up at the birthday party, it was once again clear that Lisa is not Whitney’s biggest fan. “Whitney heard that it’s a 1990s hip hop party,” she says, “and she got super excited to show us her choreographed routine from middle school. Whitney needs a lot of attention, negative or positive. But, like, stop twerking. Get off the floor.”
• The Barlow family visits the Loveland Living Planet Aquarium in Draper — a chance for Lisa and John to spend more time with their sons. Lisa says such efforts work better when they get out of their home, which is “basically a place where we all just come and set things down and, like, go do our own thing. I mean, the fact that [8-year-old] Henry calls his bedroom his apartment and asked for a mini fridge should say it all.
“But then again, if I get Henry a mini fridge, maybe he’ll never leave home. Maybe he’ll stay with me forever and ever and ever,” Lisa says with a smile.
• Lisa’s 15-year-old son zings her for her lack of kitchen skills. “You don’t want me to make you anything?” Lisa asks. “Well, I’m not really craving a microwave hot dog right now,“ Jack answers, “so I’m good.”
Episode 10 debuts Wednesday on Bravo — 8 p.m. on Dish and DirecTV; 11 p.m. on Comcast.