Tamra Judge Says She's Was Surprised by Her 'RHOC' Return: 'I Still Don't Know Why I Was Fired'

"Of course I wanted it!" Tamra Judge said about her return to RHOC

tamra judge
Tamra Judge. Photo: Jason Mendez/Getty

Even Tamra Judge was surprised she got the call to return to Real Housewives of Orange County.

At BravoCon 2022 on Saturday, the reality star opened up about coming back to the show for its upcoming 17th season, saying that she wasn't expecting that call to come.

"I was like, 'Oh s---.' Like, really? This is happening?" she said, while on the "Bravo, Bravo, F---ing Bravo" panel.

She went on to describe the range of emotions she felt after first getting fired from the show in January 2020, ahead of season 15.

"I got to a state where, the first year, I was in a fetal position crying," said Judge, who was a mainstay on the show for 12 seasons. "I was very sad about not being on the scene, everybody filming and all that stuff."

SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 02: In this image released on June 5, Tamra Judge attends the 2022 MTV Movie & TV Awards: UNSCRIPTED at Barker Hangar on June 02, 2022 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)
Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic

Her sadness changed when the pandemic hit and RHOC had to film during the height of COVID — which Judge dubbed, "the Tamdemic for Orange County."

"It was.. ugh..." she said of season 14.

Judge then when on to recall how the launch of her podcast, Two T's in a Pod, helped take her mind off it. And when Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: Ex-Wives Club came her way, RHOC wasn't anywhere on her mind, she said.

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But it was during RHUGT's press tour that she got the call. "[They said], 'Hey, we want to meet with you.' And I was like, 'What the f---? Really? This is happening?' " Judge replied.

Despite her shock, Judge explained that she was happy to return. "Of course I wanted it!" she said at BravoCon, adding. "I still don't know why I was fired!"

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES ULTIMATE GIRLS TRIP EX-WIVES CLUB -- Season:1 -- Pictured: (l-r) Brandi Glanville, Vicki Gunvalson, Jill Zarin, Phaedra Parks, Dorinda Medley, Tamra Judge, Eva Marcille, Taylor Armstrong -- (Photo by: Sophy Holland/Peacock)
Sophy Holland/Peacock

Season 17 of RHOC is currently filming, with Judge joining returning favorites Shannon Storms Beador, Gina Kirschenheiter, and Emily Simpson.

"It all just happened so quick," Judge said, reflecting back on it all. "I'm here, what, three months into filming and like, 'OMG I got asked back.' It still hasn't sunk in."

As for how her RHOC costars have reacted to her return, Judge teased, "Not well, bitch!"

"Nobody really gave me a hard time when I came back. I gave everybody a f---ing hard time, but everybody was super nice to me and then it made it weird for me because I was like, 'Why? You danced on my grave when I was gone. And now you're being nice to me? Why?' " she wondered.

Tamra Judge
Tamra Judge. Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty

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Judge announced her return to RHOC in July 2022, during an appearance on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. "The judge is back and drama is in session," she said, after taking an orange off the show's set.

BravoCon 2022 continues all weekend at the Javits Center in New York City.

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