Kelly Dodd faced a lot of heat during her first season on The Real Housewives of Orange County but by the end of the season, the majority of RHOC viewers had sided with Kelly against Tamra Judge, Heather Dubrow, and Shannon Beador. This season, we’re going to see a whole new side of Kelly, according to her co-star Tamra.
In a lengthy interview with Huff Post, Tamra dishes on all things RHOC including her troubled relationship with Vicki Gunvalson, why Kelly “impressed” her during filming, and why fans will want to “hug” Shannon throughout this season.
Because there’s so much content, we just decided to bring you the best parts of Tamra’s interview.
Facing Kelly and Vicki after last season wasn’t easy for Tamra.
“I had this uncomfortable feeling going into it and I didn’t know what to expect,” she explained. “The girls, Vicki and Kelly, had a lot to say about David Beador (cast mate Shannon’s husband) and Eddie (Tamra’s husband). It ended in a really ugly way last season and I was a little bit nervous because I didn’t want to rehash that stuff. Also, even though you’re on a show together with these people, you just don’t want these people in your life.”
Season 12 features a whole new Kelly Dodd.
“I was a little surprised, however I think she’s good TV,” Tamra said of her return to the show. “There’s a fine line and Andy Cohen talks about this. When people love to hate you, it still makes for good TV, but when people hate to hate you, it’s uncomfortable to watch. Kelly was really close to that line and I didn’t know if she could redeem herself, but she really does this season. I mean, she’s still Kelly, but you see a softer side of Kelly. She said outrageous things last season and I honestly didn’t know if she was capable of changing but she did. She must have internalized: “I was a bit of a jerk” and reflected. She knew what she had to work on, and she is less abrasive this season. Last season she got in trouble for things that she said, but this season she really controlled her mouth. She is a great example of someone who learned from seeing her mistakes play back on TV and I was impressed by this softer side of Kelly Dodd.”
She’s no fan of Vicki.
“There’s no need for me to [be friends with Vicki without the show,” Tamra revealed.
The cast was divided throughout filming — and Tamra barely got to know new Housewife Peggy Sulahian.
“You know…I don’t know…I was actually just saying that it’s such a different season this year. The cast was a little bit split almost three quarters of the way through filming,” she said.
“I don’t know what Kelly and Vicki did most of the time because I was filming much more with Meghan [King Edmonds] and Shannon. Peggy is the new girl and I didn’t film with her all that much either. This season, there was lots of filming done individually and a focus on family stuff, whereas in the past there was lots of group stuff. I could be wrong but that’s how it felt. You’ll see that I am participating in a documentary about parents who have been unfairly estranged or separated from their kids called Erasing Family.”
The ladies have moved on from last season’s drama.
“There are some friendships that get strained, but that will occur towards the end of the season so I’m not going to spoil it for you. You will have to stay tuned,” she teased. “Me and Shannon and Meghan are all good friends and Shannon, Kelly and I have moved forward from where we were last season. As you know, Lydia who was on the show a few seasons ago returned for this season and we always maintained a friendship. It was nice to have Lydia back. It’s definitely a lot different this season. Lydia really has a voice this season and comparatively, she was quiet the last time she was on. Now she really stands up for what she believes in.”
We’ve seen the RHOC premiere and will agree with Tamra on numerous fronts. This season is going to be yet another shake up in Orange County and we can’t wait to see how it all plays out.
Oh, and one final thing: #TeamKelly all the way.
The Real Housewives of Orange County returns next month.