The OG city is the first of Bravo's Housewives to return to TV after filming amid the coronavirus pandemic. New Jersey, Dallas and Atlanta are all currently in production on new seasons, as well. Season 15 follows the lives of the OC cast from February through August of this year. When stay-at-home orders went into effect in March, the women filmed their lives themselves on iPhones.
It appears plenty went down before and after lockdown, too -- from shouting matches, breakdowns, blackmail allegations, impersonations, walk outs and this sure-to-be iconic line courtesy of Shannon: "Don't you dare accuse me of something that I did."
RHOC also joins in on the 2020 trend of Bravo shows breaking the fourth wall, as the women discuss production stopping down. Then, seemingly after filming started back up, viewers see producers intervene to make sure the ladies follow social distancing guidelines. See below for a breakdown of what to expect from each ‘Wife this year.
Shannon Storms Beador
Shannon starts the year off in complete bliss with her new boyfriend, John, and a new home with her three daughters in Newport. As the last Tres Amiga standing, Shannon makes peace with Kelly, but quickly finds herself in hot water with the other women. When the pandemic hits, Shannon's anxiety hits an all-time high. She and John find themselves at odds over house rules with their blended family during the lockdown.
Kelly kicks off season 15 on a high, fresh off her engagement to Fox News reporter Rick Leventhal. She's eager to settle into their new home in Newport -- and for Rick to be transferred from his network's New York City bureau to Los Angeles. Kelly's behavior during the pandemic stay-at-home orders rubs the women the wrong way, as she bops up and down the east coast, visiting NYC, the Hamptons and Miami. As the 2020 election looms, Kelly's political beliefs and tone-deaf jokes also threaten her relationships with the ladies.
After a self-admittedly rough 2019, Gina is said to be happier than ever as she moves into a new townhouse with her boyfriend, Travis, and their modern-day Brady Bunch of six kids; but Gina's "happy place" apparently becomes a punch line for the other women, who criticize her new digs. Gina also has to focus on her relationship with her ex-husband, Matt, who will make his first appearance on RHOC this season; she's faced with making a tough decision regarding her ex that could change the dynamic of her family.
Emily's got a new hip -- and a new outlook on life! The lawyer/party planner fully embraces life as "fun Emily" in season 15, starting on a clean slate with her husband Shane after a rough few years. Emily and Shane's relationship only gets stronger amid quarantine, as the pair leans on one another and learns the true strength of their marriage. Plus, Emily picks up yet another job: swimsuit designer!
2020 is a year of milestones for Braunwyn, as she and her husband, Sean, celebrate 20 years of marriage and move their family of nine into a new, 8,000 sq. foot home. When the pandemic hits, the mom of seven has to quickly figure out how to juggle her big brood without the help of nannies and housekeepers. From supporting her son Jacob's desire to do drag to addressing her children’s anxieties about the pandemic, Braunwyn has her hands full. Then, when her pal Shari moves in with her, the ladies question Braunwyn's life choices. Braunwyn also struggles to see eye to eye with some of her friends on politics and over her participation in local protests amid the Black Lives Matter movement.
Elizabeth Lyn Vargas
Elizabeth joins the group by way of Kelly, who she's known for a few years from the Newport party scene. Originally from Missouri, Elizabeth always dreamed of living a lux life on the beaches of Orange County -- and with the help of her soon-to-be ex-husband, that dream is finally a reality! Currently the CEO of an online music company, Elizabeth is ambitious, outspoken and more than ready to have fun. As she deals with her ongoing divorce, Elizabeth's lifestyle, along with her complex (and sex-less!) relationship with her boyfriend, Jimmy, have the women scrutinizing her every move.
The Real Housewives of Orange County's 15th season premieres Wednesday, Oct. 7, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo. Catch up on previous seasons of RHOC on Peacock Premium starting Sunday, Sept. 20.