Why This Season Of 'Real Housewives' Should Be Sonja's Last

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There comes a time in every Real Housewives cast member’s life when she has to look at herself in the mirror and make a long, hard decision on whether or not people want to watch her on television anymore. And it is difficult to look inward — self-realization is not really a key trait in people who volunteer and consistently appear on reality shows — but it’s a necessary evil. Such is the case now with Sonja Tremont Morgan, whose time on Real Housewives should be drawing to a close. Yes, Sonja Morgan needs to leave Real Housewives Of New York.

Sonja came on the scene in Season 3, and she provided some much-needed comic relief to the season — Season 3, of course, was the era of Scary Island and Kelly Bensimon and Jill Zarin’s interloping in the Caribbean, so fans needed Sonja to talk about her arm fat and drink too much and generally be jolly. It was fun. And audiences tolerated her talking about her partying with John F. Kennedy, Jr. and Madonna and jetting off to Gstaad in her furs because it was just part of the allure of Sonja. But now, Sonja's jokes have transformed into non-stop nasty comments, provoking more hurt feelings than good ones.

Sonja’s drinking has been a topic on and off of the show, and Sonja’s finally admitted she was imbibing a little too much. In turn, she’s juicing and eating more vegetables and living her best life (or trying to). Sonja is even thinking about renting out her townhouse, since it’s just her living in it now (her daughter is away at boarding school). But this is hard for her to process — while her cast members are talking about the future, she is stuck in the past. She loves to talk about the things she used to do, the life she used to live a decade ago with her ex-husband, but this has stagnated her. Everything is changing, and Sonja is so not good with that. So, she lashes out.

At first it was a sly word over cocktails, but in Season 10, Sonja has launched full-scale insults at basically all of her friends. Three episodes into Season 10, Sonja has implied that Tinsley is a gold digger and that she only came back to New York so that she could get a man to take care of her. (Methinks Sonja is just mad that Tinsley moved out.) Sonja has called Dorinda fat, and Dorinda has a name for all of these comments — nasty nice. Sonja pretends to be nice, but, as Dorinda says, she’ll cut your throat while she’s smiling at you so you don’t quite feel the pain. And we still have such a long way to go! A season of Real Housewives is basically as long as Earth's orbit around the sun. There is a point when negging and joking turns from a laugh to a malignancy, and Sonja has reached that point on Real Housewives Of New York.

The whole reason that people watch shows like Real Housewives Of New York is to watch some wacky antics, covet the things that wealthier people have, and indulge in a little bit of escapism. But when the antics turn downright mean, like they have with Sonja, it gives people less of an obligation to tune in. If I wanted to watch people argue, I could take the headphones out of my ears on the subway. If I wanted to see people make very mean comments to each other, I would spend more time on Twitter. This isn’t good television anymore — it’s just tough. We turn to Real Housewives Of New York for a way to unwind. If I wanted to see divisions, I would watch… any news channel.

And so, the cause of so much pain much be eliminated — unless Sonja can be the original Sonja we know and love, there’s no point in having her on the show. Viewers love an argument, but they don’t love a teardown. Another well-to-do New York woman could easily replace Sonja on Real Housewives Of New York, and she would be kinder, more watchable, and just as entertaining.