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‘Total Divas’ season premiere recap: Holy naked Rosa

Season 3 | Episode 1 | “Eggs Over Freezing” | Aired Sept 7, 2014

When last we left our high-lying, bedazzled damsels, the Divas had just survived Wrestlemania XXX, Brie and Daniel Bryan finally tied the knot, and Nikki’s secret marriage was exposed. Basically, it was a cornucopia of over-the-top drama. A quick montage of those events sets up a premiere that should be equally larger than life. Instead, what the audience gets is a well-done hour that is far more based in reality than it is in camp.

Sure, there are nude Divas and silly scheming, but there is also a very real look at issues that have very real consequences. From Eva Marie’s realization that her father is dying to Nikki’s desire to be a mother to a frank conversation about faith, tonight’s premiere reminded viewers why the ratings for this reality show continue to soar. As our trusty ring announcer would say, “Let’s get ready to rumble!”

Inspired by Brie and Bryan’s romantic wedding, Eva Marie decides that she wants to have a ceremony of her own. She convinces her new husband, Jonathan, and the two decide that photos of Eva Marie clad only in bra, panties and stiletto boots would make the perfect Save the Date card photo. Later, Eva Marie shares the photos with Naomi and Titus O’Neil, who sums up the thoughts of audiences far and wide with an “Oh, hell no!”

Rosa Mendes returns after a year and a half in rehab, and quickly establishes herself as a fount of wisdom when she tells a disapproving Nattie that side-boob is the new cleavage. She then watches as 10 Divas throw down in an epic battle royale. We see Nattie take a dive over the top rope, Naomi drop-kicks Cameron, and a host of other women display an array of impressive physicality. It also reminds the audience that despite their makeup and heels, these women are first and foremost world-class athletes.

Back home in Phoenix, the Bella Twins, Brie and Nikki, talk about Nikki’s romance with John Cena. Apparently Nikki’s deception has been forgiven, with the commitment-phobic John even posing the hypothetical question of whether marriage to him would be enough for Nikki. Brie quickly throws cold water on Nikki’s romantic musings by suggesting that she freeze her eggs just in case things don’t work out with John. Brie reasons that it’s the perfect insurance policy should Nikki wind up 40 and alone.

The WWE comes rolling into Cincinnati and Mark Carrano, the senior director of talent, wastes no time in assembling the Divas and laying down the law. Thanks to Mark, we finally learn that Summer has not gone AWOL after last season’s beat-down by Nattie, but is instead off filming a movie. He also assigns Nattie to be Rosa’s “big sister,” much to the chagrin of both women.

Eva Marie and Jonathan travel to California, with Jonathan begging his wife to not throw him under the bus with her family. Clearly he remembers lasts season’s über-awkward dinner where they dropped the bomb of their elopement. But Jonathan need not fear, as Eva Marie’s family is beyond ecstatic about the news of their impending ceremony. Unfortunately, in the minds of her parents, this means a Catholic ceremony. Too bad Jonathan isn’t Catholic. They then show the family the Playboy-esque Save the Date photos, and their reaction is pretty much exactly what you’d expect.

Nikki is going full steam ahead with her egg-freezing plan and has decided not to tell John until after the procedure. You know, because keeping secrets from him has worked so well in the past. The family celebrates Nikki’s decision, and Bryan even offers to donate sperm to his sister-in-law because that’s not weird at all. Brie accompanies Nikki to the fertility doctor and gets more than an eyeful of what is involved in actually harvesting your own eggs. For her part, Nikki is equally taken aback when the fertility doctor tells her that she will have to refrain from sex and drinking until after the procedure.

Back with the family, Eva Marie accidentally discovers that her father’s cancer has returned and that it’s inoperable. It is at this moment that True Divas elevates itself above most other reality-show fare. Eva Marie’s reaction isn’t one of histrionics, but of controlled fear. Both her deep love for her father as well as her sheer panic at the prospect of losing him play out on her face. The result is one of the most honest reactions to cancer ever captured on television.

She decides to ask Jonathan to convert to Catholicism so that her dad’s dream of walking her down the aisle in a Catholic church comes true. Here again, real life takes center stage as Jonathan explains that the most important relationship in his life is with God and that he can’t betray that even if it disappoints Eva Marie. Seriously, when was the last time you saw an honest conversation about faith on a reality show? If you answered “Never,” then you’d be right.

Meanwhile, Rosa greets her new on-the-road roomie, Nattie, at the door wearing nothing but a smile. Nattie manages to squirm for a few minutes before finally caving and asking Rosa to put on some clothes. One episode in and it’s already clear that this is the start of a fabulously dysfunctional friendship.

Back at Casa de Cena, we learn that John doesn’t like window treatments and that Nikki is still bent on keeping him in the dark about her fertility plans. As John shows the interior designer around, Nikki engages in some cloak-and-dagger action with the fertility nurse, who is forced to draw the wrestling superstar’s blood in the closet.

It’s the night of Rosa’s big return to the ring and she’s in full freak-out mode. It doesn’t help that Titus is back and dropping more truth bombs, this time telling Rosa she looks beat. And it really doesn’t help that Rosa catches the other Divas making fun of her right before she hits the ring. She winds up losing her match against Nattie and tearfully tells the other Diva how disappointed she is in her performance. Nattie gives her a pep talk and tells her the one truth no one can deny: Every Diva wants Rosa to fail because they want to be the one to take her spot.

We wrap up this heavy premier with John discovering Nikki’s fertility injectable and Eva Marie vowing to her father that somehow, some way, she will have a Catholic ceremony!

Comments, Gripes and Observations

  • This season opener was seriously lacking some Naomi and Cameron. Here’s hoping these two get major storylines this season.
  • As much as I’m enjoying Rosa, did anyone else miss Summer and all her drama?
  • I’m not gonna lie: I thought Jonathan was a giant tool last semester, but we’re only one episode in and already he’s rehabilitated his image.
  • Do you think Eva Marie is going to manage to pull off a Catholic wedding?
  • Will John Cena finally dump Nikki for her lying, scheming ways?

Hit me up in the comments and let’s talk Total Divas!

Total Divas airs Sundays at 9/8C on E!

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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