A 'Real Housewives' Mystery Solved

A substance-fueled reality mystery was finally addressed last night. 

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Every morning we address the important topic of something big, significant, funny, weird, etc. that happened while we were lying on the couch in front of the TV last night. Today we have a substance-fueled reality mystery that's finally been addressed. 

Monday night television isn't the best. Well, if you're a Dancing With the Stars fan and were excited to see Maks give that one judge a kiss on the cheek, then sure, it was a good night for you. Or if you're one of the odd few who are still really into Fox's weirdly wan Terra Nova, then maybe you like Mondays too. But otherwise on Monday nights we're stuck with mostly older stand-bys rather than exciting new things. And so that brings us this morning to Bravo's tried-and-true Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

The big mystery of this season, if a show like this can even have a "big mystery," has been just what the shambling hell has been going on with Kim Richards, the sometimes funny, sometimes scary, but always compelling secret star of the show. She's been actin' funky -- slurring her words, speaking in strange non sequitur, looking like she's ready to pass out at any moment -- and after last night, we finally know why.

Or at least we think we know why. The setup: Cast member Adrienne "the Maloof" Maloof's husband Paul was having a little plastic surgery party for the girls at his plastic surgery office, because sure that sounds like a normal thing to do, nothing invasive or surgical, just injections and laser beams and stuff. Y'know, non-scary things like needles filled with Botulism and whirring laser machines that change your molecules. No biggie. Anyway, the point is that Paul held this party and all the girls came to get things plumped and reduced and, uh, twisted and tucked maybe, and probably scraped, and definitely cinched. Lots of cinching. Kim wanted to get some version of Botox injected into her face, and Paul was game to do that. But first, he had some questions.

Yes Paul is in fact a real doctor so he had to ask, in very calm doctor-y tones, some pre-horse disease injection questions about Kim. It wasn't entirely clear if he was just doing due diligence or if he was snooping out of curiosity, but something about the soft, professional kindness (rather surprising coming from him, no?) of his manner seemed to indicate that he was firmly wearing his doctor hat. Basically he asked Kim if she was on any medication, and with only a slight tremor of hesitation, Kim answered: "Trazadone, Topamax, and Lexipro." Yipes! Sounds like serious stuff.

And it is, to an extent. Lexipro is a commonly used antidepressant. Topamax is an anticonvulsant that is sometimes used in treatment of alcoholism (so, ding ding ding on that one). And Trazadone is a somewhat old-timey antidepressant that can also be used on hyperactive disorders. Which all sounds about right, yes? Upon hearing the ingredients of Kim's pill cocktail, Paul nodded his head and said, "It all makes sense now." He gently explained to her that that combination in a less-than-perfect balance can cause some pretty wackadoodoo behavior, as Kim has definitely -- to both sad and funny effect -- exhibited this year. Paul advised her to consult her psychiatrist again, Kim insisted (believably) that she hasn't been mixing it up with any booze, and that was that. Kim seemed a bit relieved to have someone show her some thoughtful care, a now we can stop worrying that her out-to-lunchedness is something more serious. It's somewhat rare that a Housewives show talks about a problem like this so directly and un-obliquely, so it was interesting to see them "go there" (ugh) last night. And in the end we got a satisfying, strangely comforting answer. How nice!

Later in the episode, though, we discovered the exact nature of Kim's big secret relationship with Gargoyle Pete or whatever her hideaway boyfriend's name is, and as it turns out they are moving in together after only a year or so of dating. So... oh dear. Just when it seems we've closed the door on a Kim problem, God or Andy Cohen or someone opens up a Kim problem window. Ah well. That's what keeps the show going. And, of course, keeps us watching.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.