After the straight nonsense that was both Turning the Tables AND Love Italian Style, I needed a little Caroline Manzo, queen of no bullshit in RHONJ fame, in my life. Caroline has always been the matriarch for the RHONJ, the grand dame who rules with an iron, ginger fist. She unfortunately left after season five (that sixth season! With those weird twins? I effing hated that mess) to be on her own show, the wonderfully (horribly? I can’t decide) titled Manzo’d with Children about her fambily.
Immediately out the gate, Caroline (like every other housewife before her) claims that she really didn’t want to do the show. I don’t understand this at all (AWLL, as Caroline says). Did Andy Cohen burst into your house one day, throw a bejeweled top on you and FORCE you to sign a contract saying you would act like a toddler while wearing too many lashes for daytime?
You all WANTED THIS, ladies. I don’t believe that there has ever been one wallflower on this show, with the possible exception of DeShawn Snow, season 1 of RHOA. But it is a reality show! ON BRAVO!
Anyway, Caroline narrates this book herself! Hooray! Having a professional narrator really takes you out of these fascinating books when not spoken in the native tongue (cough MELISSA GORGA cough), so I am glad to have Caro do it herself.
The format of this book is kind of strange. Caroline tells stories of joining the show, the impact being on tv has had on her life and fambily (STOP IT AUTOCORRECT DON’T YOU KNOW WHO CAROLINE IS, SHE PUTS THE B IN FAMBILY) mixed in with “ask Caroline” sections. Caroline gives totally normal and level-headed advice but I am not sure why these are in here? But I guess I should just let her tell me something.
Things Caroline is adamant about:
- FAMBILY (shocker). Especially eating meals with your fambily. There’s nothing wrong with this, and Caroline is actually very realistic about this and I got nothing. Be more insane, please! I can’t do much with rational advice.
- The whole first part of the book seems to be a pitch for Caroline to get her own talk show. She mentions being on the Tonight Show approximately 87 times and goes into deep detail about how much she loves the talk show format, etc. I mean, I guess it’s not the worst idea ever, but it hasn’t seemed to pan out well for any Bravolebrity, except for Oz himself, Andy Cohen.
- NOT instigating dramz. Caroline tells us again and again that she doesn’t act crazy, she just reacts to the craziness thrown at her. Which, I guess don’t blame her…
You know what else Caroline LOVES? CHRISTMAS!
So, Caroline loves Christmas, even the stress of it all, wrapping presents for like 75 people, serving food to a house full of Manzos, etc… I mean, it all sounds just lovely, but I am kind of confused here? What are we supposed to gain from this? It sounds like listening to stories from your mom’s good friend Antonia who is really good at decorating her house for the holidays. Like, that’s so great for you Antonia, but without a how-to or a recipe, are you just telling us about how great your tree looks until someone awkwardly compliments you on it? I am like really good at grocery shopping, do you want to hear about it?
It’s kind of a shoulder shrugger, but whatves. In PART TWO, Caroline talks about parenting! Can’t wait to here all about how Christopher’s stripper carwash is doing.