This show is tanking. HARD. It’s a shame because it could have been such a great show about a beautiful city but they just picked the wrong people.
On the other hand, Ashley Borders really is the show. Once you accept that it is not the same sort of Southern Charm show you expected and embrace your inner Delta Baggage Handler, it might be okay. Maybe as my college friend Ray used to say every time we found ourselves in horrible situations, “You’re just looking at it wrong. ”
Of course we start with Ashley telling her friend Zia pictured above about the need to cleanse her house of bad energy. I was so going into this with a positive attitude until Ashley opened her mouth in confession. As soon as she says, “The Gullah religion is.. ” My head was filled with the sound of a needle on a record making that scratch sound. Gullah is not a religion, it is a cultural identity of a subset of African-Americans on the Georgia and South Carolina coast. Perhaps someone who fled Savannah in high school should not return thirty years later to discuss the cultural intricacies of the region on national television without a clue of what she is talking about. I can’t. Nothing she says about the Geechees is accurate.
Ah Sistah Patt has arrived to save the day. Perhaps they could have allowed her to discuss her community. She’s an activist in the area committed to saving the Geechee culture in the low country. She also does a lot of work with Feed the Hungry and she’s got a lot of political roots in general. Her name is Patt Gunn. I believe every thing this woman says about there being spirits in the room that need to be released. I believe in the root doctors of the Gullah culture ever since I taught at an HBCU in South Carolina. It was a very small place and we all came down with a horrible flu at the same time. One of my students went straight to the root doctor off the coast and returned with a dirty paper cup from a 7-11 filled with I do not want to know what. It tasted like crap but I drank from that paper cup before he took it to his friends. We were all well and back on campus within 24 hours while others languished for weeks. I am a firm believer in Gullah Geechee culture. Anyway, Sistah Patt prayed the spirits right out of that room. Then she told Ashley that her soul mate has not found her yet, but he is coming. Do not doubt Sistah Patt, y’all.
Louis thinks Hannah is his soulmate. I’m not so sure. Maybe they need to ask Sistah Patt.
Then back to Ashley and her husband. She tells Dennis what Sistah Patt said about them not being soul mates. She says maybe she is standing in his way. Dennis replies with “I enjoy living here. Leave the salt and pepper alone.” That’s reference to hoodoo, which is a part of some of the Geechee culture. It’s a religious belief grounded in Christianity to some degree that also includes spells. Many of those spells include salt and pepper. Hoodoo dolls were recently introduced on Southern Charm when Cameran purchased two of them from some white guy.
Ashley says that she and Dennis were not romantically involved when they remarried. They remarried because she and her son were moving to Dubai and it technically isn’t legal for a woman to live with a man she is not married to or related to. People do it, but despite being one of the most evolved Muslim countries, Sharia law still applies. That said you would have to attract a lot of attention to yourself to get in trouble for shacking up. Then again it is Ashley. It’s amazing that she managed to live there without getting arrested for public indecency. Apparently she can conform to societal rules if the penalties for not doing so are high enough.
Next we have a little party on Tybee Island. I never really liked Tybee when I lived in Savannah. It was a longish drive and usually crowded. Some people love it because last I was there no highrises were up and it’s just a dirty little beach without much going on. Nelson has hired a girlfriend and she’s hot. I wonder how much she cost him? Perhaps just being on TV was enough for her. It’s not like she had to kiss him.
Catherine picks up two guys on the beach. She tells them that she is not single and her boyfriend is in Minnesota. Um isn’t Lyle, Lyle crocodile the love of her life and only a few feet away? Oh no, maybe he is off somewhere. Catherine is trashed. She gives her phone number to the two guys. Her real phone number.
Ashley whips off her cover-up to reveal a SUPER cute fifties style swimsuit. I want it. the bottoms are beyond full coverage, it’s like an 18hr girdle. I need this in my life. Catherine jumps in to go swimming with her. I think the whole bit where the two girls say that Ashley likes to take her clothes off in front of our boyfriends was a frankenbite. The only thing we really saw was one of them saying “I hate that!” #ProductionSucks
Hannah tries to present her ideas for beach cover ups to a local Savannah personality. It didn’t go well.
Happy meets with her mother Lysa. Love Lysa with all my heart. She is spectacular. I want to be Lysa. She is out on her little pier crabbing when (un)Happy arrives. She has a chocolate lab puppy. I want a chocolate lab puppy. I want to be best friends with Lysa.
Once again Ashley tells us in her affected southern accent that Hurricane Matthew is getting ready to skirt by and informs us that no one pays attention to that and they just sit in the porch waiting for the next thunderstorm. Bitch doesn’t even have a porch and when I lived there we had a little something called Hurricane Floyd and I had to pack up my care with the things I wanted to save (art mostly and Mamaw’s cast iron skillets) and leave my little apartment on the marsh with the possibility I will never see it or anything in it ever again. It was horrific. It took me two days to get home to Atlanta. TWO DAYS. We were not sitting on the porch, bitch.
Catherine’s gay best friend, Brandon, is making lovely arrangements out of cheap flowers for the dinner from hell. It seems like it is his house where the party will occur. As people start to filter in to the party Brandon starts literally at the door getting people drunk.
Right away Lyle and Louis start coming for Ashley. They ask her what she does and I don’t care if she works at Cafe Risque (I actually went to pick up a job app there once, I was on a recon mission, don’t ask) on I-95, there is a certain southern gentlemen decorum that is not present in the guys. She says she has a luxury stylist company and she is perhaps the only one in the area. I will pause here to defend what I think is about to happen to Ashley. I’ve been thinking about getting a job at Walmart. I have my own company as well, but the cost of a small business owner paying to health insurance is beyond my grasp at this point. Walmart allows part-time employees to have health insurance. So if I could pick up a few hours there, I would be working for the benefits and not for the pay. I feel like it is the same thing with Ashley and Delta pays very well. So she gets almost free travel anywhere Delta flies and insurance and money to fund her business. This is simply smart choices on her part. But I am getting ahead of the story.
Lyle is super creepy and Louis by extension is too. At dinner, the host, Brandon looks deflated. Idiots are bitching about cucumbers on the salad. Nelson is lying about his non-existent job. Lyle is perhaps the worst person in the world. Happy brings up that Nelson is a known liar and con artist and he says those reports were not from real journalists, just bloggers. But his ass was real arrested. Louis defends Nelson. Then Nelson admits that he impersonated Georgia congressman Jack Kingston. He says he doesn’t know why he did it and he is a good friend of his family. All true. And somehow he pocketed his congressional pin and impersonated him DC. He’s a scumbag. Then we get into his claims he was Minister Plenipotentiary for Artistic Endeavors for the Bahamas. This is not cute. This is mental illness. Which is why his parents sent him to a mental health facility. Much like Teresa Giudice he calls it camp. Liar’s camp.
Ashley is trying to defend Nelson. His behaviors are indefensible. She says this is why she left Savannah because people gang up on people. She knows things about everyone at the table and if they all want to defend their truth they should step up to the table. (un)Happy wants to start with Ashley. Hannah says she thought they had made up but apparently they haven’t as Ashley continues to talk about her. Ashley asks if she should got into Hannah’s past. Hannah is the only one of the women who has tried to make up with Ashley and she doesn’t trash talk her because she has a life. The others not so much.
Catherine say that she has been judging her because she doesn’t who she is. Ashley says I never told her anything so how could I be dishonest? She says she never told them she worked for Delta. Ashley says she works five-hour twice a week, that is not her life. She can fly around the world for free now. Wow, Daniel doesn’t have her back now? What a douchebag!
Ashley brings up that she heard Catherine is cheating on Lyle. Another guy at the table says he heard the same thing. So Catherine’s GBFis now in the mix he questions whether or not her house was really on fire and says everyone knows she has an open marriage. Tasteless and cruel but that is what GBF’s do.
Then when that blows over Daniel calls out Nelson on his racist behaviors.
Next week: Oh look it’s an evacuation from Savannah. And nobody sitting on the porch drinking tea. People are fleeing for their lives with only what will fit in their cars.