Like many of the "housewives" on The Real Housewives of Miami, the show has gone under the knife. Larsa, Christy, and Alexia have been cut and replaced with, what Bravo obviously hopes will be more exciting and confrontational women. If it weren't for her crazy mother Elsa, Marysol probably would have been history as well. While the first season tried to play up Miami as a multi-cultural playground for the beautiful people, the second season paints the southern metropolis as more of a battlefield. It's all about conflict: old money as opposed to the nouveau rich, trash versus class and the elite against the wannabes.
Season one survivors Lea, Marysol and Adriana are all undergoing some big life changes. Lea and her husband have bought a palatial money pit on the exclusive Star Island. As the name suggests, this residential island neighborhood has been or is currently home to celebrities such as Rosie O'Donnell, Will Smith and Madonna. Lea is more concerned with the neighbors she hasn't met; the people who managed to snag a move-in-ready mansion just a few doors down.
While Lea is upsizing, art dealer Adriana and her fiancÃ© Frederic are downsizing. Frederic bought an antique yacht that he is restoring to its former glory. Once finished, the couple is going to call it home. "I'm a gypsy at heart, so I agreed to live on this boat," Adriana states. "Once it's finished, it's going to be to die for but right now it's hard to see it."
Marysol is in the midst of a separation from her husband Philippe. As it turns out, whirlwind courtships and quickie marriages sometimes don't work out. Her mother Elsa, a highlight for many viewers in an otherwise humdrum first season, is still doling out advice and cryptic predictions. While shopping, Marysol admits to her mother that she went to see a psychic. This woman told Marysol that "she would meet a lot of new women, and there was going to be a lot of gossip and a lot of trouble." Her mother, whose own visions seem to come clear only in hindsight, agrees. Mama Elsa also states, "You'll be surprised what destiny has in store for you."
This installment of the franchise is supersized with a total of eight housewives. Three of the newbies are blonde and almost indistinguishable from one another physically with the exception of their cup sizes. The most down-to-earth of the trio is Ana. An attorney with a passion for cooking, this Cuban mother of two remains best friends with her soon-to-be ex-husband Robert. They also manage a law office together. Ana is determined to move the practice to Coral Gables, but Robert is opposed to the change. He feels his clients will feel intimidated by the posh suburb. As the season unfolds, it will be interesting to see if Ana and Robert sever their business relationship in addition to their marriage.
Amidst the bevy of blondes, there is Columbian dark-haired beauty Karent. In addition to being a "dentist to the stars," she is also dating a famous Latin soap actor and heartthrob named Rodolfo, "He's every woman's dream, including mine," she says. However, not all is at it seems between the lovebirds. Karent has suspicions regarding the motives of a supposed casual acquaintance of Rodolfo's named Ana.
Almost assured to bump heads with Leah is Joanna Krupa, a successful and widely-recognized model. Whereas she fancies herself outspoken, she just comes across vain and abrasive. During a photo shoot for "Ocean Drive" magazine, Joanna is informed by her younger sister Marta that she will not be appearing on the cover. Joanna perceives this as an unacceptable slight stating, "I don't downgrade, I only upgrade." She explains to Marta that to appear only in an editorial spread inside the magazine makes no sense for her career when she has previously graced the cover twice. Feeling tricked, Joanna immediately calls her manager and states that if she is not on the cover, they have no right to publish the pictures.
Joanna travels extensively, but when in Miami, she lives with her club-owner fiancÃ© Romain and Marta. "Miami definitely has the old power players that have been in Miami for so long they think that it's their town, and we're just like living in it, " states Johanna. "There are new kids in town, and we are the new Miami, so move over."
Lisa is married to plastic surgeon Lenny the "boob god." He has, according to his wife, performed more breast enhancement surgeries than any other doctor in the country. She admits to being a walking advertisement for her husband. A real life Dr. Frankenstein but instead of a monster, he has created a living, breathing Barbie doll. The couple will soon be relocating to Star Island, and it turns out that they are the new mystery neighbors that Lea has been so desperate to meet.
Lisa doesn't work, but states that because of her husband's grueling hours she takes care of "everything." Of course, this stay-at-home delegator has help from her housekeeper Daysy. Daysy could give Elsa a run for her money in the crazy department this season. The recovering alcoholic is studying to be a pastor. It is unclear what type of religion she's practicing as she explains to Lisa that she is learning to "cast demons." Daysy also desires an extensive amount of plastic surgery, and her employers have agreed to foot the bill.
All of the women come together at a wine and food festival. It's all hugs and air kisses until Lea arrives. Apparently, she and Marysol have had a falling out over events that occurred at Lea's annual gala. Will there ever be an episode where that gala doesn't get at least a passing mention? Predictably, when introduced to Lisa, Leah is unimpressed and dismissive. Despite the snub, Lisa heaps fake flattery on Lea and behaves like a desperate social climber. All of this does nothing to endear Lisa to Lea.
The party really heats up when Karent shows up with Rodolfo and sees Ana. It turns out the woman she perceives as a possible threat to her relationship is fellow RHMIA castmate Ana. Rodolpho's claims of Ana's flirting may not be the whole story. When introduced, both Rodolpho and Ana act as if they have never met, and the entire he said/she said spiel spells future trouble for the two ladies in this love triangle.
However, leave it to Mama Elsa to steal the show. Granted, it is by being wheeled out of the party by paramedics, but still. Whatever the cause for her collapse, it doesn't prevent her from expressing embarrassment at her unexpected departure.
Even with the new additions, The Real Housewives of Miami, is unlikely to be as popular as the New Jersey, Atlanta and Orange County editions. However, with so many juicy storylines already in place, the show promises to have a caliente sophomore season.