'RHOC' Season 14 Reunion: Cast Breaks Down Vicki Gunvalson’s Meltdown and Other Must-See Moments (Exclusive)
By Brice Sander
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Get ready for the "meltdown to end all meltdowns."
Bravo's The Real Housewives of Orange County's fourteenth season wraps up with an explosive, three-part reunion special, which starts airing Wednesday night, and ET has the inside scoop on just what goes down, straight from the people who were there. Housewives executive producer/reunion host Andy Cohen and many of the RHOC stars, Tamra Judge, Kelly Dodd, Shannon Storms Beador, Gina Kirschenheiter, Braunwyn Windham-Burke and Vicki Gunvalson, all opened up about taping the reunion at BravoCon last month, just days after they shot it.
"There is a meltdown to end all meltdowns," Andy teases, referencing the emotional roller coaster fans will see Vicki take them on. For the first time, the Coto Insurance founder is not a main cast member, which means she joins the reunion midway through and exits before it ends. Apparently, being asked to come in late and leave early did not go over well with "the OG of the OC."
"Andy got in a fight with Vicki at the reunion," Tamra admits. "Just saying!"
"It's hilarious," Kelly says. "It's a blowup of all blowups. It's true. I can't give it away, but it's so good."
"You know how she can sometimes keep going on and on," Shannon explains. "It was like, you know, it was amazing. I literally was sitting there, laughing and horrified all at the same time."
As seen in the teaser trailer for the reunion, Vicki storms off set and screams to someone, "Stop the cameras! This is about my job, my career, and my show that I started 15 years ago!" The cameras then seemingly follow her backstage, where she's filmed screaming about Braunwyn in her dressing room. Braunwyn "replaced" Vicki on the show, in a way, as she took a full-time spot on the cast. It seems safe to assume that Vicki didn't realize her backstage rant against Braunwyn was being recorded until she got eyes on the camera shooting through the doorway. In the trailer, she screams at the camera person, "Really?! F**k off!" before slamming the door.
The backstage fireworks are, apparently, a continuation of some bombs Vicki threw on set against Braunwyn. During the season, Vicki called Braunwyn "boring wind" and flat out admitted to not liking her, repeatedly. In ET’s interview with Vicki, she even refuses to use her co-star’s name.
"I might've had to bring out my can of whoop-a**," Vicki declares. "The new girl, she needs to stay in her lane."
"Here's the thing, [Vicki] got mad at me because I'm too enthusiastic, but if you don't like your job, then maybe you should leave," Braunwyn fires back. "I walked in there and, you know, I felt amazing, and I was so strong and I owned that."
In the teaser, Braunwyn straight-up challenges Vicki, who routinely calls RHOC "my show," by telling the 57-year-old star, "It's not your show." As fans might expect, that only sets Vicki off more.
"She had us doubled over laughing," Tamra says. "There was a point where I'm laying in Shannon's lap, because she was so funny, but she was trying to be so serious, and she was going after Braunwyn. She's like, 'I don't like you making out with people! I don't like you doing this!' I mean, we were hysterically laughing. It was funny. I mean, you have to see the whole thing."
"Vicki and Kelly go at it again, but actually I think the outcome of that, I found to be, I was surprised by it, sitting there on the couch," Gina confesses. "I'm excited for people to see, because I think it was very out of character for the characters, and I'm interested to see how everybody responds to that."
"There are some real, strong emotions," Andy offers. "Surprisingly, there is some mending of fences, which I didn't expect going into it."
"Usually, after those things, you have resolution that comes with it," she notes. "But, I didn't feel like there was any resolution."
That might have more to do with the other two thirds of the “Tres Amigas” than it does Vicki, though. In the trailer, Tamra compares the reunion to war, while Shannon dubs it a "s**t storm." Both women had bones to pick with Kelly.
"It was a rough reunion," Shannon shares with ET. "But it was Shannon Storms Beador's first decent season, out of six. Five bad ones, and I finally felt like it was OK for me. So, I wasn't nervous for the first time going into the reunion, but sparks flew."
"It's interesting to see how everything lands," Gina adds. "There's an explosion. There's shrapnel everywhere ... we're all walking with a limp, but we made it out."
Gina will hash out her issues with Emily Simpson, and also opens up for the first time about her relationship with her estranged husband, Matt. Gina reportedly obtained a restraining order against him earlier this year after he was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence.
"We saw a real, emotional Gina, who let us into everything that she's been going through," Andy notes. "It's upsetting, and I think people will be interested to hear what she has to say."
"I talk about some of the more recent things that happened with Matt, which, you know, is unfortunate and really tough to talk about," Gina admits. "I hadn't even talked about some of that stuff even with my therapist yet, so it all just kind of blah, blah, blah, came out, so that's gonna be really interesting to people."
"I'm not an over-sharer and I do tend-- I think, when I was first asked to be a part of this, they were just like, 'Be yourself,' and part of myself is, I don't share that stuff a lot," she adds. "So, it's a new thing for me. But what I found this year is, when you do share, you do feel a lot better. If you keep these negative things in, it's like bottling up poison. So, I let it go this year, and I let that go at the reunion and it did ultimately make me feel good. It's like I left it there."
The Real Housewives of Orange County’s three-part reunion kicks off on Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo. Part two airs Monday, Dec. 23, at 10 p.m. ET, and part three on Thursday, Dec. 26, at 10 p.m. ET.