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'The Real Housewives of Miami' recap: 'The Black Sheep'

Good day, Bravo fanatics! Who else was excited to finally have a fun, informative episode of RHOM?

Thought so! Most of the ladies had very limited screen time in tonight’s episode, so let’s get them out of the way, shall we?

We shall start with the lady least seen tonight -- Adriana. There was no storyline progression with her tonight -- well, not in the RHOM sense. Tonight, Adriana shares how much her son, Alex, has grown as she sends him off on his first formal dance with a friend. She tries her best to get a chaperon spot at the dance, but Alex lets her know, loud and clear, that there will be no such position waiting for her. Adriana is last seen chasing the town car carrying her son down a street. That's it for her.

Joanna’s storyline progresses a tad. We find ourselves in Joanna and Romain’s living room as they Skype with Romain’s family to invite them all to the wedding of the season. The visit starts with Romain’s biological mother, moves to his French-speaking father and ends with his brother (who is apparently the brother that didn’t get ANY of the amazing genes that Romain did... bless his heart.) Not ONE of them is able to confirm a “yes” to the wedding invitation. Ouch.

Romain apparently realizes that the ties to his family aren’t nearly as secure as he thought they were. Later, we find him setting up a beautiful candlelit dinner for Joanna in their backyard, with the incredible view of Miami, and renting a yacht on which to take his princess.

On the yacht, Romain surprises Joanna with a gorgeous puppy and rips up the pre-nup that he had put in place, all to prove to Jo once and for all that his love is oh-so-real! Sweet. Normally, I’d call this ridiculous, but one is about as much of a bread-winner as the other, so I completely support this. (That wasn’t cynical at all. I promise.)

Alexia and hubby Herman are celebrating 10 years of married bliss! They share their night with their family members and we see that her son, Frankie, has been working on his reaction skills; he has a comment for everything that she has to say at the dinner table. It really is so good to see that he is sharp!

Now you might be asking yourselves, “Self? What could POSSIBLY make this celebration better?” Unfortunately, this is as good as this segment gets, because Marysol swoops in to be a Debbie Downer. OK, I’m SO concerned for Elsa’s well-being. But really, Marysol? Is Alexia’s anniversary party really the place to tell your BFF that your mom has been saying she wants to die? Is it the time to say that, if you lose your mom, you’ll die with her? I don’t know, I’m not really the type of person that would ruin a friend’s milestone for my own grief.

Alexia gives her sad friend some good advice, however. In her own experience with Frankie, Alexia tells Marysol, she has found that being the strongest you can possibly be will serve the situation best. "Once Elsa sees you let go, that’s the moment that she’ll let go," she offers. Well said, Alexia.

Most of tonight’s episode is actually like a time machine, as we finally get to learn about one of the show’s least revealing characters, Lea Black. I won’t lie, I had a BLAST seeing all the old ‘80s and ‘90s glamour shots and infomercials! Lisa serves as the means for viewers' finding out about Lea -- and boy, does she get to the root of a lot.

We travel to Waco, Texas, where Lea was born and raised, but which she felt she had outgrown. We get to meet Lea’s mom and half-sisters, her aunts, uncles and nephews. Lisa says she didn’t know Lea had one sister, let alone two, plus all this extra family.

We learn that Lea has always been not only bossy, but also incredibly giving, even actually paying for some of her nephews’ college tuitions. Lisa says she wishes Miami would know this side of Lea. Family anecdotes are discussed and there are lots of laughs being had. Then, we hear a family story about Lea’s sister, Kim. Now, my eyes have been glued to this episode, and nowhere have I seen a Kim.

There’s a reason for this. We find out that Lea’s sister Kim, her only full-blood sibling, was killed in a freak accident three years ago. For those of you doing the math, this is indeed one year before "Real Housewives of Miami" was a thing. Sad times. Lea seems to completely shut down at this point and it looks as thought we need to move on.

We get to meet a bunch of Lea’s former employees at a bar, for which Lisa and Lea are entirely overdressed. Lea explains that she didn’t need to marry for money, as Miami thinks she did. Lea started a skin-care line in the 1980s and hired some women; they all worked seven days a week and made lots of money. They “worked hard and played MUCH harder.”

It is a lot of fun to see what Lea looked like 20 and 30 years ago (you definitely need to check out the clips if you missed it last night).

The ladies spend the night taking shots, two-stepping with cowboys and riding a bull. Lisa assures us that she’s “very good at riding things,” despite what we might have seen on the bull. That’s comforting.

Next week’s episode is when we finally get to see the epic Joanna vs. Lisa fight. I, for one, am looking forward to it! Have a great week, folks!

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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