RHONJ Recap: Jen Fessler Tells Teresa About Secret Meeting Before Reunion as Rachel is Pissed, Plus Danielle Throws Nate a Party and Kayla & Tiffany Are Introduced

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RHONJ Recap: Jen Fessler Tells Teresa What Went Down the Night Before Reunion as Rachel is Pissed, Plus Danielle Throws Nate a Party and Kayla & Tiffany Are Introduced

This episode of The Real Housewives of New Jersey is all about celebrating life… oh, and alliances, of course. Danielle is happy to be throwing her husband, Nate, a party to signify six years since his brain surgery. Although that sounds like a lovely idea on paper, the reality is that having all of these women in one place could be a recipe for disaster… considering how things were left off with Teresa and John Fuda after Jen Fessler‘s birthday.

If you’re surprised that Danielle wants to be a stage mom, then you’re lying to yourself. Her daughter, Valentina, is in need of some new headshots, and so to the studio they go. Danielle has brought her son and Nate along for emotional support. We learn that Boujie Kidz, Danielle’s children’s wear company, has really taken off, so much so that she has been invited to New York Fashion Week. Nate cheers his wife on for her successes, and she cheers him on for something much more emotional.

Six years ago, Nate underwent brain surgery to remove a cyst. Danielle has decided that this would be the perfect reason to throw a party, and so, to celebrate Nate’s life, there will be a banger held at the Jersey Shore for all to attend. But that opens up a can of worms since the ladies are very clearly divided. It is more important than ever for Danielle’s friend group to stick together, considering the recent rift she is experiencing with her father, on top of the issues she has had with her brother. She is annoyed that her dad never stands up for her when it comes to the fight she had with her brother, and so now, Danielle is choosing to protect herself.

Dolores is staying busy by getting back into real estate. Although she moved in with Paul about a year ago, she still considers herself an independent woman. Dolores understands the importance of self-sufficiency, particularly because Paul isn’t even divorced yet. She talks about the lack of trust in the friend group, and she reminds Paul that Danielle’s event will be DTS (down the shore). On top of getting *sick* from Italian food, we learn that Paul also doesn’t really like the Jersey Shore, which begs the question, wtf is Dolores doing with this man?! Paul jokingly asks, “Do I have to get lines shaved in the side of my head or something like that,” to fit in better at the boardwalk.

Teresa and Louie chat about attending Louie Sr.’s eight-year sober party. I can barely pay attention to what is being said, as I am focused in on Louie wearing a “give me pizza you old troll” T-shirt. WHAT. As the convo goes on, Teresa gets more and more choked up when she thinks about Gabriella leaving for college. After all, according to Tre, her dorter Gabriella is the rock of the family. Later, Teresa explains that she has nothing to say to Margaret, due to legal issues, but when the day comes when she can speak freely, she will be singing like a bird about the Marge.

It’s Antonia’s 18th birthday, and so Melissa has planned a birthday brunch for her only daughter. Melissa gets so sentimental thinking about how fast time has flown, and she makes a speech about how much she will miss Antonia. She wants Antonia to “explore” her “wild oats,” and family becomes the topic of conversation, particularly the upcoming wedding of Melissa’s cousin. Joe will be officiating the nuptials, and he becomes emotional thinking about how much Melissa’s family has embraced him from the start. It isn’t lost on him that his side of the family is missing important milestones, like birthdays and such…

As Teresa is running around prepping for a spa day with Danielle and Jennifer, she chats with Gia about taking the LSATs and talks about how focused Gia is on her legal studies. While Danielle and Jen arrive for a little “booty pop” brought to you by Emsculpt, Margaret, Rachel, and Melissa get together for some pickleball. Marge’s pigtails have also made a comeback for this athletic venture…

Post pickleball, Rachel talks about her Rheumatoid Arthritis flare-up and how lately she has been struggling with the pain. Melissa understands how quickly pain can take over, and she shares how her own mother has taken a fall, leaving her with a broken arm and in need of stitches. Melissa then goes on to invite Marge and Rachel to Joe’s upcoming daytime birthday party since everyone will be down the shore for Danielle’s event already.

Over at Tre’s, Danielle lets the girls know that she is staying at the Fudas’ shore house. Teresa nearly recoils, but she gives the green light for Danielle to make her own friendships. How kind of her. Danielle is in an awkward position, considering all of the sh*t Teresa has recently talked about John. It turns out that Teresa’s *juicy* rumor that John is the biggest drug dealer in Bergen County has zero clout… Rachel explains that when he was 17, he got arrested for selling pot. Period. Rachel finds it baffling that Teresa, the one who went to prison, is trying to weaponize something that happened to John when he was a child.

It’s finally time for the Jersey ladies to take on the shore. Teresa, Louie, Paul, and Dolores all roll into Jen’s condo (Bill is STILL in surgery), and Dolores explains that she hasn’t been down to the beach in like two years because Paulie doesn’t like the vibes. Over at Casa Fuda, Rachel hosts the Fesslers, and she talks about how great the party was, except for the Teresa altercation. Jen clarifies that she doesn’t have any beef with Teresa and reminds Rachel that everyone in the group says crappy things. John states that he doesn’t like when people play both sides, which is symbolic as Danielle and Nate enter their house. Danielle feels a little stuck in the middle and asks for everyone to be cool tonight, but John does not make any promises. However, so long as no one pushes him, things will go okay.

All parties in all houses head to Nate’s “not just surviving, but thriving” party. It is an event chock full of friends upon friends, but Danielle makes it clear that Jackie was not invited due to the way she has treated Danielle in the past.

Marge and the gang sit down to chat with some new ladies, and she fills them in on how the group has become so tense as of late. As if on cue, Teresa enters the party. Danielle is sweating, knowing that this can go one of two ways. John states that he will not be engaging tonight, which is a relief…

A gospel choir comes all the way from Washington, DC, to celebrate the life of Nate, and after their performance, Jen and her borrowed pot pen (thanks, Jen Aydin) sneak off for a little friendly chat with Teresa.  Of course, this makes Rachel confused as she thought Jen was her ride-or-die, not some Teresa kiss a*s.

Teresa gets right into it, asking Jen why the group got together the night before the reunion. Jen lets Teresa know that it was a get-together to prep for whatever information Louie may have come up with thanks to his private investigator. She goes on to say that Margaret was going to pull up the recording of Louie threatening her kid, but although they all talked a big game, none of it actually came to fruition.

Jen denies saying, “You guys didn’t execute the plan correctly,” but instead, she tells Teresa that the plan they discussed at Margaret’s never came to be. Jen lets Teresa know that Marge was hysterical after the threats were made to her son, but Tre swears on her girls that it wasn’t Louie. Jen makes Teresa clarify that she didn’t mean that John IS the biggest drug dealer in Paramus NOW, but in his PAST, and they hug it out, agreeing that things are fine between them now.

Rachel looks on in complete and utter shock, questioning if Jen is truly the friend she says she is to her. This should make for an awkward night back at the Fudas’ shore house.

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