RHOA Recap: Kim’s capacity for compassion is called into question (long distance!)


 “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” Episode 414: “No Bones About It” recap:

 As our weekly postdoctoral research into alcohol-enhanced anger management therapy opens, Phaedra Parks, NeNe Leakes, Sheree Whitfield, Kandi Burruss, Cynthia Bailey and interloping ex-con “RHOA” wannabe Marlo Hampton are still in South Africa and absorbing the life lessons provided by their field trip to the AIDS afflicted orphanage.

 The ladies, who had previously self-segregated themselves into the “Gossip Girl”-esque cliques “The Talls” and “The Smalls,” now bow their heads at dinner inside the posh resort where they’re residing and count their blessings. “It made me want to do more,” Kandi allows. Adds Phaedra: “We forget how fortunate we are.” Finally, after much consideration, Marlo reveals the impact the outing had on her: “This shrimp is raw. I need the waiter, please!” It is perhaps redundant to mention this is the same woman who brought 29 pairs of designer heels on a trip to South Africa.

 After a visit to a bone-rattling herbalist (who, for the record, cannot distinguish between human remains and seashells), Marlo falls mysteriously ill. When NeNe asks what’s wrong while applying a damp washcloth to her forehead, the etiquette tip-dispensing Marlo is, as always, discreet and lady-like: “I’ve been up all night throwing up, diarrhea, everything.” When Phaedra and company arrive in her room to inquire about her delicate state of health, Marlo clearly comprehends that she may have overshared with the world on-camera earlier. “I’ve been throwing up, diarrhea, I just feel weak,” she moans. A gloved up germaphobe Nurse Leakes stays behind to care for the fallen Tall. As the other ladies depart on safari, Phaedra dispenses some last-minute medical advice to Nurse NeNe: “Use a rectal thermometer. It’s the most accurate. Make sure it goes deep, too.”

 And since the ladies are vacationing in one of the most fascinating places on earth, what do you suppose they squeeze into their schedule post-sightseeing? A cellphone call to Kim Zolciak, natch, who is back in Atlanta taking care of two-month-old KJ. During the conversation, Sheree casually mentions that Kandi has openly questioned whether Kim would have participated in the outing to the orphanage and lovingly cradled AIDS afflicted African babies in her arms. Kandi points out the callous comments should have been attributed to Cynthia and promptly thanks Sheree for throwing her under the bus.

 Kim seeks to clarify her capacity for human compassion once and for all: “Of course, I would have gone to the orphanage. That’s absurd. I would have had a blast!” Apparently, on a long-distance cellphone line from a remote section of the bush in South Africa to Roswell, Georgia, the word “orphanage” sounds a whole lot like “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.”

 Naturally, this all boils over into a tasty dinner argument as the ladies don traditional garb and decorative face paint on their final evening in South Africa. Basically, Cyn cops to making the disparaging (and potentially racist) remarks about Kim while Kandi essentially calls Marlo a label whore. We’ll allow lady lawyer Phaedra to summarize in her closing argument: “I was hopeful that we would continue to be positive about how blessed we are. But that would be too much like right for these wrong girls.”

 Coming Next Week: Atlanta caterer to the stars and A Legendary Event owner Tony Conway is back as Peter Thomas plans his and Cyn’s one-year anniversary party. Explains Peter to Conway, who memorably staged the couple’s Fernbank nuptials: “The financial situation is better but it’s not great.” In other words, a solitary cater-waiter, a tub of Publix pimento cheese, a box of Chicken in a Biskit crackers and a stack of red Solo cups should cover things adequately.