Attention gangsters and gangstettes! This week’s episode of Mob Wives picks up where last week’s left off, with Renee Graziano (aka @ReneeGmobwives) going toe-to-toe with Karen Gravano (aka @KarenGravanoVH1) outside of Carla Facciolo‘s birthday party. We’ve seen reunions on the North Pole that are less frosty than this one!
We pick up with a quick rehash of last week’s climactic verbal altercation, punctuated by Karen’s new assessment of the situation between her and Renee. “[Renee] doesn’t own Staten Island and she’s not gangster, so she better move the f*** out of my way,” Karen so bluntly puts it. It’s at this time that Drita decides to come outside and play peacemaker, despite her belief that Renee is a drama queen. Renee’s is clearly on the defensive at this point, and her reaction to Drita is a surefire notable quotable:
Well alrighty then!
Renee’s refusal of Drita’s suggestion to offer up an olive branch to Karen, as you might expect, begins to irritate Drita, much like a sliver underneath one’s skin. As we saw in this week’s bonus clip, one second she’s cool as a cuke:
And the next she’s all Hulked out.
At this point, to quote J-Kwon, errybody in the club’s clearly gettin’ tipsy. And when Drita gets tipsy AND angry, watch out. As Carla explains, at this point, “Drita is foaming at the mouth.” So not only do fingers get wagged in people’s faces…
…but someone straight up grabs Renee by the freaking throat!
Who’s the culprit? A Hulked out Drita? Her antagonist Karen? Nope, it’s Carla, who for some reason has a devious grin on her face while she’s grabbing Renee by the throat.
However, Carla’s intent is not malicious (at least, that’s how she tells it). She was simply trying to keep some physical distance between Renee and Drita, because the only thing separating Drita from the Incredible Hulk at this point is a pair of tattered purple jorts. She admits as much, too:
Fortunately for everyone, cooler heads prevail when Renee decides she’s outnumbered (and out muscled) and decides to hit the road.
However, the next day, Renee explains that she didn’t and won’t back down from Drita, ever.
However, before she has a chance to get herself TOO worked up —it should be noted that Renee’s son, A.J., did have to put up with an extended recap of the night— the Sly Fox (aka Carla) gets Renee on the horn, successfully deflects some of Renee’s accusations (“We didn’t get you drunk. you got yourself drunk”), then and invites her over to break some bread and try to get this ish resolved. Or, as Renee puts it, bribing her with food. Whatever you want to call it, Renee is down for a good meal and accepts the invite.
Cut to Drita, who shares this picture of herself as a 23 year-old who’s six weeks pregnant and just gotten hitched to Lee D’avanzo:
She explains that only three weeks into their *cough* shotgun *cough* marriage, Lee got popped (for the first time) on bank robbery charges, which sent him to prison for six years or so. Then, once he got out of the slammer, they had their second daughter. However, Lee only lasted two years on the outside before getting caught again. And now, no one really seems to be sure how much longer he’ll be in the hole, which has Drita wondering how long she can stick things out.
Despite their differences, it turns out that Drita and Renee do actually have some things in common. Renee met Junior when she was just 20 years old. Wonder what a 20 year-old Renee looked like? Wonder no more:
Junior, who you’ll meet later in this recap, and Renee got engaged one month and 19 days after they met, partially because Junior’s pitch to Renee was that every other guy in Staten Island would be afraid to date her because her father is Anthony Graziano. Surprisingly, that tact worked! But not so surprisingly, considering they barely knew each other when they got hitched, they’ve been separated for twelve years now (even though they’ve only been divorced for two of those years). Oh yeah, silly us, here’s what Junior looks like:
Junior swings by Renee’s house to talk about AJ’s rapidly declining GPA. In front of AJ, they get him to promise that if he gets all 80s on his next report card, they’ll buy him a new car. Only 80s? Back where I grew up, that was a B-. If I ever came home with less than a B on my report, I can tell you that not only was I not getting a car, I wasn’t even gonna get FED. Count your blessings, AJ! Spoiler alert, though? He doesn’t get it. He gets a 46 (!) in gym class, and on top of that, his attitude is described by Renee as being “real stink.” (We’re gonna use that one in our real lives, promise!)
While we’re speaking about crappy marriages, Carla’s ain’t so pretty, either. Her husband isn’t in the pen for much longer, but she wants out of this relationship as soon as he’s no longer incarcerated. However, as far as her kids are concerned, Daddy has just been on an extended business trip for the last few years. Meep!
However, as we’re learning, as difficult as these ladies’ lives are, the only way they can get through the tough times is with their friends and family. Drita and Carla bond over their respective crappy situations. Drita’s father disowned her when she married a criminal who wasn’t even Albanian, going as far as to tell her, “Don’t even come to my grave when I die.”
Drita then explains to Carla that Lee isn’t being straight with her when it comes to how much longer he’s going to be locked up. Carla sympathizes; “They never really tell you the truth. They never really give you the actual time.” Drita’s all, “Yeah, I hear that.”
And to hear Renee tell it, there’s no way you can get through this time alone. “Growing up in this lifestyle, not only do you need a therapist, you need a life coach, a lawyer, a doctor, a nun, a priest, you need everyone that’s right there for you because you never know what’s gonna happen.”
Yeah yeah, we know that Tony Soprano saw a shrink, but at the end of the day, he was a fictional character. That’s why we feel like it’s so very brave of Renee to invite cameras into her therapy session, especially one in which she totally breaks down in a crying jag when the stress of being the glue in her family’s relationship overwhelms her. “I never matter,” she cries, and we feel the first tug at our heartstrings in Mob Wives. And you know what? Having seen a few other episodes of the show, this is hardly going to be the last time that you cry with these strong women. Trust us.
However, that’s not the note that we end on. Nope, this episode is not going to have an ending in which one of the characters collapses emotionally, but in a way that ultimately seems cathartic. Rather, Drita answers a call from Lee, one in which he pokes as her asking if her attitude on the phone with him is part of her “**** voice.” Now, if we know the first thing about women, there are very few words that can instantly send a woman into a Hulk-like rage. We do not know exactly what it was said, but if you want our gut instinct as to what Lee called Drita, it rhymes with bunt. Oh, and this happens, too.
Two C-word bombs in one conversation? You know, if we were in Drita’s shoes, we would’ve ripped the phone straight out of the freaking wall, too.
What will happen with Drita and Lee? Will Renee and Drita ever patch things up? How are people, outside of Renee, going to react to Karen’s return to Staten Island? You’re going to have to tune in next week to find out!