This past week wrestling fans saw some of the worst things that have aired in quite some time. It was so stupid, so ill-conceived, and of such poor quality that it’s prompted talk of boycotts and turning off the product. No, I’m not talking about the Moxley vs. Omega match at AEW’s pay-per-view. Rather, I’m talking the terrible episode of Total Divas. Check out the full recap below.
Backstage, the girls are talking about having been invited to Ronda Rousey’s mountain training camp – a gesture that Rousey made to help mend any fences resulting from her tendency to bash the girls on social media. Sonya – one of Ronda’s main targets – seems less than thrilled. But, knowing that Ronda is the WWE’s shiny new toy, she feels compelled to go. Also, you know, because this episode is 45 minutes long, so they need some forced scripted drama to fill the time, lest we just see them sit around – or, God help us, a Bella match.
Nia isn’t going to Ronda’s because the Bellas have invited her and Paige to a fashion show to debut their Birdie Bee label’s spring line. Nia is going to have to walk the runway despite, she tells us in a talking head segment, that the doctors have confirmed she has no ACL in her right knee.
Nattie and Sonya land at the airport near Ronda’s place, but Carmella is nowhere in sight.
At the pre-fashion-show party, Brie’s in total Brie Mode, and Nikki is glowing because of her new boyfriend, some guy from Dancing with the Stars
Ronda and Travis are planning for the girls to arrive, and – oh my God, their dog is huge… seriously, it’s like a giant mutant dog. It may even be bigger than Roderick Strong, who’s there for some reason, or Marina, who’s apparently on NXT
They decide to leave the big dog (not Roman Reigns) at the farm, and take a little dog with them on their workout. This still doesn’t please confirmed dog-hater Natalya. Sonya has fun chasing Ronda’s chickens. Maybe she’s trying to catch something to feed that dog, lest it start eyeing her like a giant bag of kibble. Ronda is irritated by Sonya’s immaturity, and the tension between the two grows thicker.
They get to Ronda’s mountainhouse, and Nattie is upset to see a bunch of stuffed animal heads in her guestroom, because she’s such an animal lover (except for dogs). Sonya isn’t thrilled that Ronda is trying to force a workout agenda on them. Meanwhile, Nattie starts critcizing Ronda’s dog for pooping on the floor, noting that cats don’t do that kind of thing.
We finally see where Carmella is – unbeknownst to the rest of the girls, she’s bailing on the trip in order to hang with Corey Graves. She’s cool with ghosting her friends to get some lovey-dovey time.
Back at Ronda’s compound, Ronda takes everyone on a forced winter hike in the woods, and the Most Dangerous Game begins. Well, not really, actually they just end up hearing Ronda channel her inner Greta as she goes on about how climate change will result in a zombie apocalypse.
Nattie finally gets hold of Carmella, and tries to shame her for not showing up, but Carmella is unrepentant.
It’s the night of the BirdieBee fashion show, and Nikki and Nia share injury stories. Nia says that her wrestling career has taken a lot of tolls on her, not all just physical. She says she’s losing her identity because of the business. Nikki is sympathetic, but nothing is going to prevent this show from happening.
The fashion show goes well, and it reassures Nia that wrestling doesn’t have to be a drain on her life, because look how good Nikki has done in her post-wrestling career.
Sonya calls to chastize Carmella who promises she’ll be there the next day. Ronda takes the girls out for an archery lesson, and Ronda scares them with her survivalist mentality. Sonya embarrasses herself with her lack of archery ability. Nattie does a bit better, which isn’t saying much. After that, they shovel the lengthy driveway, which Sonya tries to turn into a competition. Nattie sees that Sonya is overcompensating in order to prove to Ronda that she really is an athlete, and is worried that Sonya’s going crazy.
The one-upmanship attempts continue, with the girls making bets on a billiards game, with the losers having to take chops by the winners. Nattie also gets caught up in the competitive spirit, and relishes getting the chance to chop Ronda, vowing to teach Ronda a lesson about the “fakery” of wrestling.
At lunch, Carmella continues to lie to Nattie about her whereabouts, and makes up an excuse as to why she can’t be there at the Ronda compound. She promises to get there shortly, even though she has no plans whatsoever on doing so. This has Graves worried that Carmella has a casual disregard for the truth, and that it’s too easy for her to lie about things without a second thought.
The little dog peed on Nattie’s floor because it obviously senses that Nattie hates it. Nattie is worried about being seen by Ronda and Travis as a dog-hater, so she comes up with a scheme to rub peanut butter on her thigh in order to attract the dog. And this show has now officially jumped the shark. Sonya is confused and a bit disgusted by this plan. Then Nattie does something even more disgusting and evil – she double-dips the peanut butter. Freak.
Over dinner, Nattie’s ruse seems to work, as the dog is all over Nattie. But she quickly gets busted, when everyone notices her clothes are covered with peanut butter. They forgive her and say it’s okay that she hates dogs.
Nia goes visits the Bellas, and she tells them that she’s missing her and Paige, and that she hasn’t gelled as much with the new girls on the roster. Nia talks about her dislike for Carmella, and the twins empathize with her, saying that you can’t always get along with everyone, particularly when you’re feeling pain, like Nia has been as a result of her bum knee. They suggest she buy everyone a gift and apologize for being snitty with them for the past year.
Nattie suggests that Ronda try to clear the air with Sonya because they actually have a lot in common and there is ground there to become good friends. Ronda acknowledges that she may have been at fault for the tension between her and Sonya, because her online promos often blur the line between character and reality.
Carmella and Graves have a picnic on the beach, and Graves teases her, saying that Ronda is going to beat her up if she finds out that Carmella ditched her invitation and lied about it. Graves again speculates that he may never know if Carmella lies to him about something. Shamed, she calls the girls and lets them know what she did. They all forgive her, understanding that sometimes its misters before sisters.
The next day, Nattie and Sonya get into Brie Mode and then do a winter road race and heavy workout, which seems irresponsible. Afterwards, Ronda tells Sonya that everything she said about Sonya being a hobbyist was simply performance. And that if she wanted to say something about Sonya, she’d say it to her face. In reality, she respects Sonya. And, with that, the two hug it out, and all is well.
Bob Kapur doesn’t like dogs. E-mail him your hatemail at [email protected].