Aug. 27, 2012 at 11:38 AM ET
If the sopressata hits the fan, we want Christopher Manzo on our side. There was a lot of blustering on this episode of "Real Housewives of New Jersey" but no one went to the mattresses like Caroline Manzo's pride and joy after Joe Giudice snapped at her.
"If he talks to my mother I'm going to (expletive) kill him," threatened Chris.
That's right. Battle lines were being drawn Sunday night as Caroline and Teresa Giudice squared off on their last evening in Napa. But there were a couple of people who refused to take sides.
Jacqueline Laurita managed to "sleep" through most of the confrontation -- as if anyone bought her peaceful-looking slumber.
At least Melissa Gorga was honest about wanting to stay neutral now that Teresa and her brother are speaking again. Even Al Manzo said his sleepy face was a bait-and-switch tactic: "I make it my job to sit stealthy in the background, if there's a line crossed I will be very much involved." Like father, like son.
So what had everyone (but Jacqueline) freaking out?
Caroline finally made it crystal clear that she and Teresa were never ever getting back together. "It's kill or be killed." And Mama Manzo had no intention of being served up on a platter, calling her nemesis a liar, a fraud and a disgrace.
It was a decent showdown, (Kathy got her chin yanked and Greg Bennett looked like a tennis ump snapping his head side to side), but the fireworks hardly rivaled the weave-pulling days of old since the accusations weren't anything new. There was the original Olive Garden crack in Teresa's cookbook -- don't ever go against the family or make jokes about their eating habits -- and the negative articles sold to In Touch magazine.
Essentially, it was a rehash of issues Caroline just couldn't past. And the fall out threatened to drag the other women down with her. Like Kathy, who is either a master manipulator intent on pushing her cousin's buttons or totally clueless that her efforts to reunite Caroline and Teresa weren't going to work.
On the plus side, Teresa's husband didn't seem like a complete ass for once. After initially snapping at Caroline he kept his mouth shut, mercifully dragged Teresa away from the conflict and masterfully booked an early flight home to diffuse the tension.
Joe Gorga also left early. Being on Team Teresa might not be the most popular choice but at least he came across like a loyal brother and another guy we'd like on our side when the going gets tough.
So who would you pick to have on your team in a Garden State squabble? Did you agree with Jacqueline's sleep-it-out strategy? Were you impressed that Juicy Joe walked away without saying anything stupid or starting a fight? And were Caroline's low-level grievances even worth this ugly face-off? Sound off on all things Jersey on our Facebook page.
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