By Brigette Flood and Sandy M. Tyler

In this week’s episode, we meet Sheree’s mama Thelma for the first time when the two of them visit the red clay lot where Chateau Shereé is supposed to be built. They start talking about the future, but end up revisiting the past. Unfortunately, they share similar stories about their ex-husbands’ non-payment of child support and the saddest Speak & Spell story we’ve ever heard.

Shereé has been trying to take care her financial troubles with her ex Bob Whitfield outside of court, but push has come to shove, and it’s Bob who shoves first. The pep talk from Thelma is followed by the arrival of papers at Condo Shereé, and there are plenty of heartbreaking details to remind us how lame parents can be. Too bad because who really ever needs to be reminded of that? Certainly not Kairo or Kaleigh. We hope Shereé decides to keep future calls about the child-support issue more private and off of her speakerphone, especially when one of her kids is just a few feet away.

Sure, we don’t know all the facts, but Bob Whitfield blowing off child support, then petitioning Shereé to reduce payments he’s never made AND sending his kids out to stock his pantry with gift-cards won’t get him a father of the year nomination. Raising children is something that has to be a joint effort and to argue anything else is selfish and emotionally damaging to the kids. Maybe Bob is as stupid as he looks. Let’s hope some smart judge will set him straight. Tune in this Tuesday for a very special Atlanta Housewives episode to find out.

Cynthia and NeNe pack up for an “all business” trip to New York City. Cynthia’s first stop is to hollah a Namaste to old friend and former flamer Russell Simmons and get some advice on her business ventures. You have to hand it to Russell Simmons – not only does he preside over his kingdom as the Dali Lama of Capitalism, but he’s also dated some of the world’s most beautiful women. Unfortunately for them, he’s often dated several at the same time, but at least he remains an instructive mentor and friend when the romance is over. Russell offers some brand enlightenment for Cynthia by encouraging her to expand the reach of her modeling agency, so she doesn’t have to throw out every “chubby girl”, and thus the Cynthia Bailey School of Fashion gets its name.

Later we see a fabulous looking Cynthia meet her friend and wedding coordinator, Kithe, out for drinks. He’s looking fabulous himself after an 80-pound weight loss. Then while sitting in a hipster night spot in New York City dressed to the nines, they gossip about the excessive “materialism” of Atlanta’s residents, but it’s hard to take their down to earth attitude seriously, what with all of the name-dropping. Cynthia misses New York and is struggling with a marriage still in its infancy, but she’s determined to make things work. At least she can look forward to a night of fun in her favorite city.

NeNe leaves Manhattan for Queens – maybe she thought that’s where divas go – to share a meal with her “friend” and business partner John Kolaj, co-founder of Famous Famiglia Pizza. John pours it on extra thick and extremely cheesy for a meal in front of the Bravo cameras, complementing NeNe on her fabulousness, ordering for her, showering her with gifts, and occasionally trying to front with his own “rapper” accent. It makes for some cringe-worthy viewing and even an attention-loving housewife like NeNe has to slam down the bubbly to get through it.

John takes NeNe outside for dessert, the presentation of some materialistic Louboutins and an unexpected (and bizarre) Italian serenade. Did the introduction of this bad romance ring true to anyone else watching what happens out there? Word is that NeNe exchanged her storyline with John Kolaj for substantial interest in her new Famous Famiglia franchise in the Sacramento Airport. And if Kolaj doesn’t sound like any Italian name you’ve ever heard, that’s because he’s Albanian. Still, it might be fun to see more of his bad Tony Soprano act later in the season.

Phaedra meets up with her client Dave at Morrow City Hall, and he’s late, high, excessively window-tinted, and dressed like he just ran out to grab a bag of Funyuns. We’ve heard Phaedra talk her lawyer talk, and this week we get to see her in action in court. Surprise, she’s professional, serious and buttoned up when she needs to be. And her relationship with the judge was worth whatever Dave paid her (in cash) in the parking lot afterward. We’re guessing the judge’s fine of $1,688.25 wasn’t a problem for a guy with a stack of $100 bills that thick. Dave may have escaped with probation, but does anyone else figure those random drug screenings aren’t going to go his way? Maybe Dave will have to become a reoccurring character.

Kandi and Joyce have rebounded from their Redickulous party problem, not to mention one of the worst wigs in show business. We see Kandi help Mama Joyce pose for pictures for a sexy single senior dating website. Joyce works the camera, a vintage Mustang and Kandi’s girdle for the photo shoot. Girlfriend looks g-o-o-d. Go get ‘em, cougar. You’re ready to head out into the wild west of the dating world, and if things don’t go your way, your daughter can help you out yet again with something Kandi Koated.

Back in the Bierman-Zolciak love shack, a case of Preeclampsia sends Kim to see her baby doctor, and she has Sweetie pack an extra wig and a donut snack, in case she needs to make an early trip to the hospital. Even though she’s not to term, her baby doctor, Dr. Hood, decides it’s time for Kim to have the baby, and Kroy seems more nervous about Kim’s behavior during delivery than the premature birth. Even though Kim has a complicated childbirth in her past, Kroy’s fear is the most justified when Kim picks a fight in the car on the way to the hospital.

Kim gets comfortable in her labor and delivery room, changing into her own hospital gown and designer slippers. She has no hesitation to show the camera her baby belly and semi-naked butt, but her natural hair is another story. Luckily Dr. Hood arrives just in time to get an earful and deliver an adorable baby boy – Kroy Jagger Bierman.

Kim and Kroy were wise enough to let the actual delivery of their bundle of joy happen off-camera, and for Kim, this new addition makes her new life complete. Because on Bravo, KJ’s arrival is part of the natural order of things – first comes love, then comes the baby carriage, then comes the spin-off show showing the elaborate wedding planning and then comes marriage. And if you’re lucky, happily-sequel-ever-after . . .

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.

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