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'Real Housewives of New Jersey' Season Finale Recap: Guess Who Was a Stripper ...

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Hello, season finale part one! You fall on Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year and "Day of Judgment" -- so tonight, I feel God has actually granted me permission to tear some shiksa housewives a new one.



Speaking of God, Melissa's having a pretty troubling crisis of faith: Does she wear her cheap 'n' skanky leopard heels, or her cheap 'n' skanky diamond heels to meet an unnamed VP at a record label in the city? Suddenly her phone rings, and it's none other than Kim D., AKA "The Crypt Keeper." (Seriously, Google it. The undead resemblance is uncanny.) Melissa scowls and lets Kim D. flap her gums. "I got involved in gossip and nonsense and I stuck my nose where it didn't belong, so I owe you and your husband an apology," she says, in the least apologetic tone ever. She's been bad-mouthing Joe's business, and Melissa's so mad she could skin a leopard to make a matching handbag.

"I'd like to make amends," Kim D. continues before revealing her ulterior motive. Since she's having her annual Posche fashion show and needs to draw attention to it because, uh, it's a fashion show at Posche, she reaches out to "friends" who happen to be on a TV show. She invites Melissa to come with a guest, but Melissa has her number. "Maybe I'm the biggest celebrity she knows," she jeers.

Am I missing something re: the spelling of this boutique? Is that a play on words, or did Kim D. owe a "C" and an "E" a favor?

Over at Teresa's house, she's giving her brilliant children an Italian lesson -- or, as one Rhodes Scholar writes in her tiny, genetically-screwed handwriting, "ItaiIan LEeSSoN." Only problem? Teresa "speaks dialect, not the proper Italian." She and Joe can barely get through a sentence without their brains very visibly exploding. "If you were a high school teacher this would not work out good," Gia says before dashing to the blackboard, reprimanding her sister for ingesting an eraser, and firing her mom.

Then Teresa's saved by the (door) bell: Kim D. is here in all of her over-processed glory with an invitation to the Posche fashion show. Teresa squeals because she "loves the fashion show!" And really, what's not to adore? Bravo reminds us what a special, heart-warming event it was in 2009 with a flashback to ex-cast mate Danielle and Teresa trying to rip each other's faces off. Then, we're treated to a scene from the 2010 show when Teresa's children were left alone and she tried to pluck cousin Kathy's eyes out. Like I said -- super fun!

Kim D. says that she's already called Melissa but hasn't found time in her extremely busy schedule of stalking the "Housewife" film crew to call Kathy, Jacqueline and Caroline. Teresa says she has no problem with that guest list, and reminds us of a quaint little Italian phrase that means "you're dead to me." Since she can't pronounce it, she gives her mom a call. Back in "Italian With Gia 101," she's teaching her siblings how to say "hate" in Italian. What a darling circle of life! So much venom, so many generations to spew it.

Speaking of things that go "blech" in the night, Lauren Manzo is heading to her brothers' apartment to eat a meal cooked by Albie's gal pal/roomie Lindsey. She seems hungry for a niiiiice plate of resentment -- which actually sounds more delicious than the weird ham and English muffin thing being created inside. Her parents are there too, and they all try not to gag violently or touch anything when they enter the apartment of premarital sin.

Caroline waxes poetic about how fantastic Albie and Chris are doing in their new apartment and gives the floor to Lauren. She has some huge news: She just signed the lease for her new store, Caface. (It's a cafe and beauty bar where you can drink foundation and slather your skin in coffee. Wait, might have gotten that backwards. It's drink moisturizer, duh.) Between Albie getting booted from law school, Chris leaving the Brownstone and Lauren's first business going belly up, "success" hasn't exactly been a word in the Manzo kids' vocabulary. Now that they're all settled, Caroline and hubby will need to add "retirement" to theirs.

Lauren's not the only one with a fledgling business. Kathy's trying to get her dessert off the plate and onto the market, so she's meeting with the Bindi organization to talk about using their flavorings with her recipes. She and her husband show owner Attilio Bindi and some other guy a poster on which she, clad in a very odd purple top, floats above the words "Goddess Sweets." Seems like the poster is pretty much all she's planned, though, because a very awkward silence follows. You can practically hear a cannoli drop.

Kathy explains that all 700 of her treats were scarfed up at her last event. "Well, they were free," her husband points out. Even the bigwigs agree that it wasn't a very nice compliment, and Kathy's eyes exit her body and crawl under the desk. She goes on to explain that the "happy ending" or "sweet finish" is her favorite part of the meal. "To be honest, my favorite part of the meal is Kathy," her husband says in his interview. "It tastes like fish and she gets it done." Luckily the Bindi boys weren't there for that special gem, 'cause they'd definitely lose all appetite for "Goddess Sweets." I know I will be cutting sugar and gill-bearing aquatic creatures out of my diet just to ensure I'm never, ever reminded of that visual.

The Bindi gang must be eager to work with a sexual deviant and a pop-eyed chef 'cause they agree to partner up. Kathy's beside herself with joy, and it's hard not to root for her. Unlike some other ladies we know, she's gotten to the top based (mostly) on talent, without leaving a trail of bodies and deceit in her wake. Yay, diabetes for everyone!

Speaking of people who have achieved success because of raw, heaven-sent talent, let's see how incredible songstress Melissa's meeting in NYC is going. She and hubby Joe are sitting down with her songwriter Corte (thanks for all the blood, sweat and tears that went into "on display/on display/on display/each and every day/every day/ every day," Corte) and Jason Kpana, a guy who once saw a record.

After Melissa asks Jason Kpana if he's P. Diddy because he ordered Ciroc and is black, things are off to a great, slightly racist start. He says he's impressed that Melissa's gotten so famous without the backing of a label, and feels that his guidance could really propel her. Melissa's seeing stars ... and knows she's going to be one, too.

With that we get an incredible flashback of Melissa's astonishing ascent to fame. There was the time her husband said he loved how she sang! The day where she paid someone to take photos of her writhing on her dining room table! The chat with Ryan Seacrest! And, at her peak, the TWO MINUTES WHERE SHE SANG ON A SIDE STAGE AT A CONCERT PUT ON BY A RADIO STATION IN LONG ISLAND!

Suddenly I understand the real reason Michael Jackson died: Because pop music couldn't have a king and a queen.

Back in Jersey, it's raining hard as Jacqueline and Caroline enter Posche. (God always cries when he's reminded of all the bad fashion in the world.) Jacqueline calls Kim D. "Barbie!" because she loves working heavy compliments while medicated. Hey, we all know that doll has had a zillion jobs -- why not add "Barbie Desperately Clings to Her Fading Youth" to her resume?

Kim D.'s picked some looks out for them, but only Jacqueline is semi-willing to model. Let's just say an insanely tight black sparkle dress with her jeans still around her ankles isn't her best look. After buttering them up with reminders that their bodies suck now, Kim D. invites them to her fashion show. Caroline knows it's a pretty bad idea especially on the heels of their blow out, but this is reality TV. Of course they'll go.

In an attempt to return to normalcy, Jacqueline pops over to Teresa's with her son. Melissa arrives soon after with her kids and it's a full-blown menage-a-playdate. Melissa, Teresa and their kids are having a ball on a bouncy castle/water park thing out back while Jacqueline and her son swing all alone in a sad, lonely corner of the yard. "I thought you might want some alone time!" she pout-shouts even though she's the one who secluded herself.

The next time we see Jacqueline she's back in her house talking to her daughter Ashlee-with-two-e's. (She changed it legally, so I'm just making sure you were aware of the update.) Her blonde/brown/red hair extensions look like they were sewn in by someone who hates her and she's got black holes of makeup where I think her eyes should be. Still, the fact that she's alive and able to look this bad is a miracle considering she left her gas on for three days and almost blew up her Cali apartment.

On the bright side, she really likes the new skull she inked on her wrist and the words "I Came, I Saw, I Conquered" tattooed in Latin on her neck. I guess "I Came, I Saw, I Inhaled a Ton of Poisonous Fumes" wouldn't fit back there. "I'm really proud of you," a shell-shocked Jacqueline says before throwing herself down on the couch.

Finally it's the day of the Posche fashion show. Since Kim D. needs to maintain that special "I've Been Preserved in Formaldehyde" glow, she brings Teresa to Allure, a salon that sounds like it wants to be a strip club. (Foreshadowing alert!)

In her interview, Teresa -- clad in an outfit beamed down to her from a very unfashionable alien and with her forward-receding hairline fighting for camera time -- explains that she always does her makeup and hair at home, for fear of looking weird. Then, she adjusts her feathered sleeves and checks to be sure her boobs are strapped into her torture device of a top. Let's hope she never looks weird!

When they enter they meet esteemed assistant manager Jon Karagiorgis, who will from here on out be known as Jon Karagigigigiggigi because it is fun to type. He introduces us to Angelo, the salon's PR manager. He brings them upstairs and they discuss the evening over a glass of champagne, 'cause who doesn't like to tip back the bubbly while makeup artists struggle to undo what nature has messed up? Actually to be honest, Teresa looks quite sweet and innocent without all that crap painted on her face. Ew, it feels weird to be nice.

Then, in a voice that sounds like he's been practicing all morning, Angelo interrupts their toasts to really give them something to drink about. "Teresa, it's actually a small world we live in," he says. "I know your sister-in-law Melissa ... she actually worked for me. At a little gentleman's club in Elizabeth." Startled, Teresa tells him she'd appreciate if he wouldn't discuss her family and they send him off to find an ice cube. "Maybe that's when she went from porn-again to born-again," Kim D. quips. When Angelo comes back in, Teresa leaves the room, disgusted. Kim D. gets him to admit that the alleged employment was around 7 years ago for about 8 months. "Our costumers were unhappy to see her go," he smirks.

Wait, hold the phone. Melissa -- the woman who loves to wear teeny tiny outfits, writhe around on stage and entertain a married man who is probably gay has an alleged stripper past!? Never coulda seen THAT coming.

Now it's the night of the Posche fashion show. Inside, it's pure pandemonium. Fashion DON'Ts abound and the gals rave about their outfits. Melissa looks interesting in a piece of Hershey's Kiss foil she's fashioned into a tube top and Teresa has coated herself in glue and rolled around in purple sequins. Last week, Dina reminded us that "anger makes you ugly" -- which explains a lot about Kim D. She must be furious! Kathy and Caroline look nice because they always look nice. Their table is actually a booth that's far too small for 6 people; they're almost sitting on top of each other.

In case the night was taking too much of a turn toward civility, Joe Giudice's brother pops over to get Kathy all pissed. Since it was invite-only she couldn't even bring her hubby -- and she hates being without him and his "your lady parts smell like a delish salmon" jokes. Then, Kim D. fakes her way over and demands a drama-free night. Way to jinx it, girl. Way to jinx it.

Things at the booth/table are actually pretty calm. Teresa and Kathy are discussing how the sun can make your cleavage wrinkle and dinner has been served. Oh, you know what else has arrived? Good ol' Angelo, bearer of flash dance news.

"You remember me, right?" he says to Melissa. Based on the terror that washes over her face and the whiplash she gets when she averts her eyes, girlfriend remembers. "Yeah," she says with a horrified half-smile. Her mouth asks "how are you?" while her eyes shoot daggers and say "If you bring up my past I will literally castrate you and serve you to the models backstage."

He makes a bit of small talk and walks away grinning like the cat who caught the canary stripping. Melissa sets her face to "confused" and leans over to Kathy, playing as dumb as an already dumb person can. "I know I know him ... does he work here?" she wonders. Teresa clutches her chest and says her heart is "beating 500 again" while Melissa gets very quiet and involved with her salad.

Then, we find out everything ... will unfold next week.

TO BE CONTINUED!

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