Fans of The Real Housewives franchise know that there has to be a villain every season, and since Lisa Vanderpump is no longer around, the Beverly Hills gang has found theirs in Denise Richards. At least, that's what the 90210 Housewives want us to think. The latest installment of the Bravo series has seen Richards become the season's sole plot line to the point of frustration for the soap star and RHOBH fans alike. The super trailer for the season teased that the constant commentary about her personal life might get to the actress, causing her to walk away from the reality series before the reunion — but is Richards really leaving RHOBH?
Richards' second year on RHOBH has been marked by endless drama even before it even aired on Bravo. In early January, fans were blown away by reports that Richards had hooked up with the franchise's resident troublemaker Brandi Glanville. The claims, which had reportedly been spread by Glanville herself, include that the close friendship between the women had morphed into something more intimate and had to be kept a secret because of Richards' relationship with her husband Aaron Phypers.
It took some time for that rumor to surface — Richards was busy defending herself from the other controversy swirling around her — but when it came up, shit really hit the fan. Presented with the salacious story, fellow Housewives Kyle Richards and Teddi Mellencamp took it upon themselves to take the dirt back to the rest of the group, raising questions about Denise's personal life and her honesty (or lack thereof) with her friends. After being confronted with the rumors, the Wild Things actress made what many believed to be her final bow during a group trip to Italy.
"Bravo, Bravo, fucking Bravo," she ranted before making an exit from the dinner table on the last night of the trip. "I'm out!"
With everything she was facing, it would be understandable for Richards to completely step away from the show. But she's not done with RHOBH just yet, not when she's still got so much to say.
Forget what the rumor mill is saying — she may have missed out on filming a few scenes back in December, but Richards is absolutely still a diamond-holding member of the Bravo series' cast this season. In fact, her presence stirred up one of the biggest controversies of the season 10 reunion, which is slated to air in two weeks. The reunion was filmed virtually due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and reports from the set revealed that many of the women aired their grief with Richards during the 13-hour-long (!!) reunion taping, specifically their frustrations with the fact that Glanville hadn't been granted the Zoom link to share her side of the story.
"Reunion was bulls–t today,” wrote Richards' co-star (and former friend) Lisa Rinna the day after the reunion. "You have to be true to yourself and if you find out your friend of 20 years is a phony? Run."
"I felt like [Denise] was being hit hard all the time and I felt like it was hard, time after time, after time,” Beauvais told Us Weekly after the reunion. “At some point, you have to believe someone’s truth or just go, ‘OK’ and move on, but it wasn’t that way. I just felt like they were too harsh on her.”
Despite all of the ongoing drama, Richards appears to be doing just fine amidst the fallout of this season's chaos — maybe that's the power of the cease and desist letter she reportedly sent to Glanville and the most vocal of her cast mates. She may have spent the whole season running away from the extensive conversations about her personal life, but Richards isn't going anywhere. Not this season, at least.