Jan. 10, 2012 at 10:13 AM ET
"When you're 36 hours late to a birthday party, the natural thing would be to say, 'Hey, what happened to you?'" points out birthday boy Mauricio Umansky.
It takes an entire episode of "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" to try and resolve this question and still there are no good answers as to why Kim Richards and her boyfriend Ken missed their plane to Hawaii.
But at least one of the Housewives is proved unexpectedly popular on last night's show...
She swears like a sailor and hangs on to everyone else's husband, but Brandi Glanville's becoming one of the gang. "I didn't want to like Brandi," admits Lisa Vanderpump. "I gave it my best shot. Because she was hooked into the C-word, Cedric, although for some reason I find her very funny."
Good thing, too. Because with Taylor Armstrong and Dana Wilkey back on the mainland and Kim keeping her distance, the ladies could use some reinforcements.
Even Mauricio, who usually keeps his cool (and his shirt on) is in a confrontational mood tonight. An oceanfront dinner party turns into a fishing expedition as Kyle Richards' hubby probes Kim over her alibi before making a birthday toast to the truth.
But Kim's refusing to fess up, even thought she admits in her interview that telling them Ken had to work was just an excuse.
So we're still left wondering why she missed the plane (an expired license, missing passport and broken alarm clock were some of the options offered). Whatever the case, Kim's not talking. "If you want to have a bad night, go ahead and have a bad night," she barks back.
But it's Mauricio's party and he'll ask what he wants to. "When you flat-out, lie it makes tension and then nobody can have fun," he tells his sister-in-law.
You'd think this might have some impact on Kim, but it's the same old story the next morning.
Everyone's waiting on the bus to head out for a day at sea, but Kim and Ken are MIA.
Kyle and Lisa make it their mission to balcony hop and bust on the late-to-the-party lovebirds through their patio door.
"The alarm clock didn't work. It's my fault," says Ken about sleeping past 11 a.m. Kim later offers up her own version of events that just makes things murkier. "I'm a Virgo, I'm usually very prompt. I'm usually five minutes early. We called for a wake-up call, but what we realized later, we never got the wake-up call."
At this point, we're with Kyle, who decides to ditch her sister at the docks.
But Ken's not seeing the error of their ways. "I'm really not going to stand for anybody attacking you or putting you down. So there's going to be respect or else," he mutters to Kim over lunch.
Problem is, the man doesn't seem to know the difference between trash talk and small talk and poor Paul Nassif and Adrienne Maloof get grilled after Ken gets a weird "vibe" from them.
Maybe that's why he's so tame by the time they reach the dinner table. Once Kyle and Kim start to argue, Ken just squawks "I'm just tired of the whole thing. I wish we could enjoy ourselves and I hope you do too," before walking out with Kim. Were we the only ones expecting way more fireworks?!
Aside from their awkward encounter with Ken, this was Paul and Adrienne's episode to shine.
On a romantic hike overlooking the ocean, the couple holds hands for the first time in years. Paul toasts Adrienne as the most beautiful woman in the world at dinner and then the two show more PDA than they have all two seasons.
Don't let their bickering fool you, jokes Brandi. "I think that Paul and Adrienne are freaks. Honestly, they get it on like Donkey Kong with other chicks and maybe some dudes."
Whether it be true love or a kinky coupling, it's nice to see these two appreciate each other.
So which couple were you rooting for on Monday night? The Beverly Hills plastic surgeon and his millionaire wife, the tardy underdogs Kim and Ken, or birthday boy Mauricio and his stressed-out wife Kyle? And are you happy to see Brandi being accepted by the 90210 crew, or do you still see the self-confessed loudmouth as an outsider? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page.