‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ recap: season 12, episode 4: betrayal and tears

Originally posted Monday, November 24, 2019 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

This was a three-hankie episode. Porsha Williams, NeNe Leakes and Kenya Moore all cry over issues of trust and relationships. Porsha is grappling with a cheating fiancé. NeNe is dealing with a broken friendship. And Kenya’s marriage is on the rocks. 

Nothingburger City: As I figured, “Real Housewives” seriously over-hyped the “meeting” between former besties Cynthia Bailey and NeNe Leakes on the Bravo float in New York City during the Pride parade last June. They exchanged some mild pleasantries and it was over in a matter of seconds. 

The show hyped this moment for two episodes straight and it was clear they had nothing because if something notable had happened, they would have shown a snippet of it. (You kind of learn these things after watching this show for a decade.)

Marlo’s efforts backfire: Marlo Hampton is usually the instigator but she decides to take a different tact and play mediator instead between Cynthia and NeNe. She wants them to find some sort of closure (and guarantees herself more air time!)

First, she meets with Cynthia. Cynthia tells Marlo she thinks it’s a double standard that NeNe can talk smack about Cynthia in the media because “that’s just NeNe being NeNe!” but if nice girl Cynthia says something remotely negative, she is considered the “mean” girl. 

“If I even sneeze in the wrong direction, I have to take the high road,” Cynthia says. And that is not a healthy friend dynamic.

Marlo, who has kept her friendship recently with NeNe by staying unfailingly loyal to her, then meets up with NeNe in an effort to bridge the gap between Cynthia and NeNe. 

But NeNe has a hard time acknowledging her own mistakes or her own responsibility when something goes wrong. She takes it even worse when someone else points it out.

And that is what Marlo does.  “I’m not here to point fingers,” she proclaims. “You and NeNe both are wrong.”
This immediately raises NeNe’s hackles. 

“It’s personal so you need to stay out of it,” NeNe warns.

But Marlo keeps prodding, saying NeNe needs to apologize. NeNe takes even greater offense, misreading Marlo’s comments as if she were saying it was all NeNe’s fault. Marlo made it clear earlier she felt they were equally at fault and tries to get NeNe to take some level of responsibility in the rift. 

Not gonna happen. NeNe  walks out of the meal in a typically dramatic huff. (So who pays the bill? The Bravo camera person?)

DisintegrationKenya Moore pops in to Kandi Burruss’ abode to talk about her dying marriage. Kandi’s marriage, in comparison, has been relatively rock solid. But Kenya’s hubby Marc Daly is domineering, residing mostly in NYC and doting on their daughter but not so much on Kenya. Kenya at first gives no clue she is on the verge of separating and possibly divorcing Marc. Kandi just thinks Kenya is going through the usual hiccups of a marriage. 

But later, Kenya provides Kandi more pertinent info. For their second wedding anniversary, Kenya went to Turks and Caicos - but without her husband. Kandi has the impression Marc isn’t even trying to keep this marriage together. 

Without being specific, Kenya says Marc has “crossed lines” during arguments. “There are underlying issues with our marriage that we are not dealing with,” Kenya says. “The communication is not where it should be with us. Sometimes, I feel stuck because I don’t want a conversation to elevate to a full-on argument.”

The closest she gets to specifics is that when Marc gets angry, his “alter ego” comes out. “The depths of hell!” Kenya says. “It’s serious.” She’s worries for the safety of her daughter. Uh oh. Kenya’s previous boyfriend also had serious anger issues. 

The pain of betrayal: Porsha Williams is still reeling from fiance Dennis McKinley’s cheating ways while she was pregnant. She confesses to a counselor that she may have trusted him too much upfront but she still finds his behavior wrong on multiple levels. 

Dennis, by the way, is taking the cowardly route and refusing to show up on camera to own up for what he did or even to defend himself. There is no doubt Bravo would give him that space if he were willing. 

Porsha returns from paternity leave from “Dish Nation” on the verge of a break up. And it went smoothly. Plus, she is on the hunt for a reliable nanny. 

Next week: looks like Kenya and Cynthia get into an argument. 

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.