I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news: In this week’s episode of “Total Divas,” Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart makes a guest appearance as Natalya’s washed up, drug abusing dad, who serves as a pathway to more reality show drama for Nattie.
The good news: There is so much Wade Barrett drama.
But first: Brie Mode returns. This time in England.
Headed out on WWE’s European tour, Paige starts asking when she’s going to get to see Brie Mode live in person. (To be clear, we’re talking about Brie Mode the over-the-top drunken behavior, not Brie Mode the in-ring rallying cry/merch slogan.)
“Once you pop your clogs, then you can sleep forever,” Paige says, after which she has to explain that “pop your clogs” means “die,” which means apparently none of the Divas ever read the Harry Potter books, because Hermione definitely uses that phrase super sarcastically in The Prisoner of Azkaban when she’s talking about why it’s stupid to think you’re going to die just because you saw The Grim in your tea leaves, which is shortly before she drops out of Divination class.
Or so I’m told.
Nikki Bella, usually one to encourage her sister’s crunkedness, is necessarily opposed to the idea, because it’s TV and there has to be someone opposed. In the hotel bar, she scolds Brie to have just one drink before turning in… and then she leaves Brie unattended with known troublemaker Paige, who immediately orders an entire tray of shots.
What follows is a night of debauchery during which the following events occur:
- Brie and Paige find a bar (in England, y’all) with a shelf full of bottles of tequila worms. And then demand worms in their shots. And then drink the worms. Because Brie is Mexican.
- Brie throws a drink in Paige’s face.
- Brie bellows “Make me feel like a rock star!” to an empty bar.
- Brie falls on the floor and then flips over a chair, demonstrating that a pro can take a bump no matter the conditions.
- Brie loses a shoe and then Brie and Paige rap about it.
- Brie and Paige dance in the car to the “Brie Mode” theme song, which Brie obviously has cued up on her phone.
The next day, Brie misses a workout and Nikki has to get hotel security to let her into Brie’s room, which Nikki is pretty pissed about. Although not nearly as pissed as she is a few moments later when Brie stands up and hurls all over her sister’s chest.
“She f—king pukes on my tits,” Nikki narrates. Then she calls Brie a “disgusting little b—ch” and storms out.
There’s some more bickering at work (something something blah blah poor performance hurts The Bella Brand), but after Brie’s match with A.J. Lee, Nikki has to admit: Her sister can work hung over. But Brie insists she is not hung over – at least, not after the events of the morning.
“I got a lot out of my system,” Brie explains. Zing!
Meanwhile, Wade “Bad News” Barrett has come back from his injury, which is awkward for Alicia Fox because he has also broken up with her after a two-year relationship. She deals with the workplace awkwardness by going to visit Rosa Mendes in Las Vegas, a trip during which she lashes out at Rosa for suggesting she get over it.
“He’s never gonna be with you, and you’re gonna have to face him at work, so what are you gonna do then?” Rosa snaps. Way harsh, Tai.
Later they make up or whatever, and Foxy decides (with some encouragement from Paige) that she needs to have a chat with Wade just to clear the air. But first she has to puke. There is not usually this much vomit on “Total Divas,” but maybe it’s a theme episode.
Paige wanders down a hallway, encounters Bad News Barrett, beckons Foxy, and then bails with Rosa Mendes, leaving the former lovers standing awkwardly in front of a reality show camera. It is SO uncomfortable. This is what “Total Divas” is all about: Getting to watch Bad News Barrett stare at his toes while trying to figure out how to get out of having the world’s most painful conversation with his probably unbalanced ex-girlfriend while at work and on national television.
Foxy literally has to pull her hat down over her face so she doesn’t have to look at Barrett while she tells him that he broke her heart, and to his credit, he does not take this opportunity to tiptoe away while she can’t see him. Instead, he says if there’s anything he can do to make her less uncomfortable, he’ll do it.
He then tells her, in a speech that’s equal parts brutal and delicate, that he just didn’t see a future for them, but she’s truly one of the best people he’s ever met, and he wishes the best for her, and he knows she’ll find the right man for her soon. To be fair, she asked him for a reason for the breakup, so it’s not like he deliberately set out to disprove his claim that he doesn’t want her to be uncomfortable, but it is terribly uncomfortable. It’s also a speech that comes straight out of the How To Break Up With A Scary Woman Handbook. Don’t ask me how I know, but I know.
Then they hug and he says something about how glad he is that they are friends.
Let me tell you something, Wade Barrett: You and Alicia Fox are not friends. Not now. Not soon. Maybe someday. But not today, and not for many days. And I hope you will be back on “Total Divas” many, many times to prove this.
Finally, this week’s episode includes a tortured, depressing storyline about Nattie’s dad and his current state in life, which, suffice to say, is no bueno. It’s horribly sad, so maybe just fast forward through all of Nattie’s scenes so you don’t have to hear about his drug habit and his seizures and his reminiscing in Nattie and TJ’s hot tub about that time Andre the Giant threw Bret at him at Mania and he caught him on the cement and saved the whole thing and what a toll that kind of career takes on a man. That way you can also skip the awkward intervention and the bit about how WWE is going to pay to send Jim to rehab.
Although you may want to stop and watch the terrible scene during which Nattie tells TJ (now identified on screen as “Nattie’s Estranged Husband”) that she needs his support and TJ, trying to be supportive, weirdly pats Nattie’s back much in the way one might comfort a stranger who is dirty and smells bad and possibly has lice and/or bedbugs when one wants nonetheless to appear sympathetic.
We all know reality shows have their own kind of kayfabe, and maybe it’s a work, but Tyson Kidd, man… even when he’s a face he’s a heel.
Three other important things that happened on “Total Divas”:
- David Hasselhoff showed up in a kilt (it was relevant).
- Alicia Fox spent an entire scene jumping out from under a table to scare people backstage at work. No surprises as to who found it entertaining (Titus O’Neil, Renee Young) and who didn’t (Mark Carrano, Nattie).
- Nattie, TJ and Jim all referred to Triple H as “Hunter,” which is a step toward resolving a longstanding open question in our house about whether people call him Paul.
Next week promises more depressing dad stuff, this time with Eva Marie, but more importantly, we will dig into the psychology of Nikki Bella’s shopping obsession. Finally, something to which we can all relate.