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The Real Housewives of Atlanta Season 15 Premiere Recap: Headbutts and Harlem Nights

It takes one hell of a show to make it to 15 seasons. Whether it’s reality TV or a primetime drama, 15 seasons is worth celebrating. The Real Housewives of Atlanta just celebrated their fifteenth season by delivering reality TV excellence.

Although we’ve lost some legendary cast members along the way, there’s still nothing quite like a RHOA premiere. There’s always a buzz in the air when a new season graces our screen. The shade hits harder, the confessional looks make you gag, and we’re immediately reminded why RHOA will always be a top-tier franchise.

For its fifteenth season, RHOA received a much-needed update. The editors hit us with new graphics, chyrons, confessional backdrops — new everything. Kandi Burruss, Shereé Whitfield, Sanya Richards-Ross, Kenya Moore, Marlo Hampton, Monyetta Shaw, and Courtney Rhodes all clocked in for the Season 15 premiere. Drew Sidora was with us in spirit. So with a combo of new and old, the premiere felt fresh but familiar, and the ladies have set the stage for what is sure to be the juiciest season yet. Here’s what went down in the RHOA Season 15 premiere.

SHE got a man

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA — Pictured: Sheree Whitfield — (Photo by: Derek White/Bravo via Getty Images)

The big news coming into the S15 premiere was that Shereé landed a new man. She literally waltzed into the season premiere with the glow of someone that’s getting laid. Sherée’s new beau is Martell Holt. He’s been a cast member on Love & Marriage: Huntsville for years, and he’s incredibly easy on the eyes.

In some ways, it seems like Shereé has come a long way from being stood up in Philly by her ex-con, ex-boyfriend Tyrone Gilliams. In other ways, it looks like Shereé is again setting herself up for another failed relationship because Martell’s part is not the cleanest.

Martell’s past isn’t criminal, but he previously made headlines for having a long-term affair while married to the mother of his four children. To make matters worse, he got the mistress pregnant. That’s a lot of baggage to bring into a relationship, so all of Shereé’s friends aren’t supportive of the new romance.

Kandi previously expressed that she was fearful of Martell’s intentions with Shereé. She thought he was using her for publicity. In the premiere episode, Shereé mentioned that she’s frustrated with Kandi for her lack of support. So there’s one Martell-driven conflict for the season. Then, the icing on top — Kenya mentions that Martell once slid into her DMs.

Speaking of Kenya, we learned in the premiere that she also found a new man! Love must be in the air in Atlanta. Kenya is still trying to finalize her divorce from Marc Daly, but Kandi’s friend Monyetta introduced her to an eligible bachelor named Roi Shlomo.

Sanya’s full house

Sanya and her hubby Aaron Ross started this season right where we left them last time — in a house with way too many people. Sanya explained that on top of her family of three, she also houses her parents, her sister, her brother–in–law, and their kids. That’s about five too many people in one house.

Sanya’s full house was her main storyline last year. It’s not clear where this story is headed this year, but it’s worth noting that Sanya’s sister had a confessional interview in this episode. Think about it: we saw a confessional from Sanya’s sister before we even saw a glimpse of actual RHOA cast members, like Marlo and Drew. Is this a clue that something major will go down with Sanya’s sister this season? Sanya desperately needs a storyline this year, so fingers crossed that her sister is here to deliver it.

Kandi Koated problems

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA — “Who’s Gonna Check My New Boo?” Episode 1501 — Pictured: (l-r) Kandi Burruss, Monyetta Shaw — (Photo by: Moses Robinson/Bravo)

From the outside, Kandi and Todd Tucker seem to have the world at their fingertips. Between the restaurants, music, and TV, their hands have been in many, many buckets. However, this season, we’re learning that the foundation has a crack.

On top of their other responsibilities, we learned that Todd is working on writing movies and trying to become a filmmaker. At first, this felt extremely random. But then, Kandi explained that Todd was trying to get her to produce these little movies that he’s working on, and it started making much more sense. As Kandi’s Aunt Bertha famously said, it’s a “scheme that Todd set up.”

If this movie business scheme helps Kandi get closer to EGOT status, we might have to get behind it. But for now, Todd’s ambitious career goals have created gaps in their family dynamic. Todd has supported Kandi and their family as she has grown their empire. Now, Todd is hoping for the same level of support.

Kandi broke down into tears while chatting with Kenya about the marital pressure. Kenya shared some sisterly advice to make time for her husband. We’ll see how that plays out this season.

Marlo’s family mission statement

For years, Marlo was the messy friend we knew nothing about except for her propensity for fashion and drama. Now that she’s a full-time peach holder, most of those things are still valid, except we also get to see her personal life. In the premiere, we checked in on Marlo and her nephews as they continued settling into their life together. Marlo’s commitment to being a “Munty” can be felt through the screen. She’s trying to bounce back from last season when she kicked her nephews out of her house.

For her first family scene of the season, Marlo invited a life coach to her house to help navigate the relationship with her and her nephews. Marlo revealed that her sister is still not in the picture for the foreseeable future, so it’s paramount that she continues supporting her nephews the best she can.

The life coach challenged Munty Marlo and the kids to develop a “family mission statement” that they can always return to during uncertain times or when Marlo threatens to kick them out again. The mission statement was still in its rough draft phase, but it’s sweet to see Marlo making an effort and continuing to rise to the occasion to be a parental figure.

Courtney brings the chaos

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA — Pictured: (l-r) Courtney Rhodes, Sanya Richards Ross — (Photo by: Derek White/Bravo)

In the Season 15 premiere, we’re introduced to Shereé’s friend Courtney. According to Shereé, there are a few things to know about Courtney. She’s a Capricorn, not fake, and an “all-around girls’ girl.” Sanya immediately gave her the stamp of approval based on the thigh-high boots she wore in her first scene.

Like many Housewives cast members before her, Courtney is a marketing consultant and owns a jewelry brand no one has ever heard of. However, the most important thing to know about Courtney is that she is delightfully chaotic. And, she is one hundred percent committed to making Kandi work for her peach this season. Courtney got the ball rolling by telling Shereé that Kandi was traipsing around Atlanta asking for information about her. Luckily, Sanya invited them all to her husband’s Harlem Nights-themed 40th birthday party, laying the foundation for an epic confrontation.

The $100,000 party

Sanya Richards Ross and Aaron Ross on The Real Housewives of Atlanta
THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA — “Who’s Gonna Check My New Boo?” Episode 1501 — Pictured: Sanya Richards Ross — (Photo by: Moses Robinson/Bravo)

Sanya wanted to plan a 40th birthday for her husband, and the RHOA ladies were still clowning her over the lackluster house party she threw in Season 14. She desperately needed to prove she could roll like a Real Housewife and throw a lavish party. So, she put her check book to work and dropped $100,000 to ensure that Aaron’s 40th birthday party looked glitzy. It was money well spent because the party looked great. More importantly, a bunch of drama went down.

First, Martell made his RHOA debut at the birthday party. His mere presence got the room talking in all of the worst ways. Kenya was debating whether she would reveal to Shereé that Martell once slid in her DMs. Aaron’s 40th birthday party presented a golden opportunity to do just that. Sadly, we’ll have to wait until the next episode to see how that unfolds because we’re hit with the dreaded cliffhanger at the end of this episode.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the party, Courtney was determined to confront Kandi about the rumors she had heard. Kandi acknowledged that she and Courtney had a mutual friend named Dina. But, she refuted the accusations she had been asking around the Atlanta social scene to get information about Courtney.

Kandi deserves some kudos because she tried her best not to react to Courtney, but that only lasted for so long. Courtney told Kandi that she was seeking “clarity” about Kandi and her motives, but it seemed more like Courtney was just seeking camera time.

Kandi felt that Courtney was coming at her aggressively, and the exchange quickly devolved into Kandi threatening to headbutt Courtney. We’re going to be hearing that “headbutt” soundbite for a while, so buckle up.

We don’t see Kandi get to this level of anger very often, so the fact that a random new “friend of” pulled this type of reaction out of Kandi is notable. You know Shereé is somewhere cackling about this.

Where in the world is Drew Sidora?

A lot went down at Aaron’s birthday party, but one of the most glaring things is that, for some wild reason, Drew was completely absent. Ralph Pittman showed up at the party without his wife and delivered the most unconvincing excuses for her absence. First, he claimed that a family crisis required Drew’s attention. Then, in a confessional, Ralph explained that despite the family emergency, he wanted to be at the party to support his friend Aaron. Since we know that Drew and Ralph raced to divorce court just a few months later, nothing they can say will land well.

With Drew missing from Aaron’s birthday party, she went totally unseen in the premiere episode of Season 15. A full-time Housewife missing the premiere episode and skipping the first group event is like a child missing the first day of school. It’s just not a good look.

Aaron’s explosive 40th birthday party continues next week, and The Real Housewives of Atlanta airs Sunday nights on Bravo.


This story originally appeared on Realitytea

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