Vicki Gunvalson's Biggest Real Housewives of Orange County Meltdowns
FAMILY VAN FREAKOUT
Vicki Gunvalson showed RHOC fans a sneak peek of what was to come when she exploded in anger at a car service rep on the phone — yelling at him for sending a "little family van" to take her family to the airport.
"I said 12 bags, six people," she screamed. "We are going on a cruise for two and a half weeks. This is not funny! You have a little family van. When do you ever bring a family van to pick up six people? This is ridiculous!"
GANG UP ON VICKI DAY
When Alexis Bellino, Tamra Judge, Gretchen Rossi and Lynne Curtin attempted to confront Vicki about some offensive comments she made, it didn't go quite as well as they'd hoped.
"I’m out!" Vicki said, storming away from the table after yelling at Bellino. "I don’t want to be confronted like that at a lunch table. It’s wrong."
TIME OUT TANTRUM
Gunvalson wasn't too happy when Slade Smiley and the Housewives' husbands decided to address some of her hurtful actions.
“Cut, I’m not doing this," she told host Andy Cohen and the camera crew. "I’m not going to fight on national TV with these men. I’m telling everyone right now — cut. I’m not doing it ... let’s end it. Because I’m not going to fight on national TV.”
They renewed their vows in front of the RHOC cameras, but sadly Vicki and her second husband Donn Gunvalson couldn't make their relationship work and divorced after 16 years of marriage.
The breakup played out on the show, with Vicki telling Donn her "love tank" was "empty" and breaking down in tears after deciding to divorce moments before hosing a party.
"I know that Donn didn’t love me the way it takes to stay married," she said, crying. "I’ve realized it after I filed. It just proved to me that I’m doing the right thing. ...Inside my heart it bleeding."
'80s THROWBACK THROWDOWN
For years, Vicki made Slade's financial past her business, attacking him and alledging he hadn't payed child support to his ex-wife. But when Gretchen claimed Vicki's new boyfriend Brooks Ayers hadn't paid his child support, Vicky exploded and confronted her at an '80s-themed party.
"Are you a mother? I’m a mother. I’ve been a recipient of someone who has never paid child support. It sucks," she yelled. "You’re not a mother, you have no idea what it’s like. You have no idea until that baby comes out of your vagina. You are a piece of s---. Do not stand up to what you don’t know about. My boyfriend is none of your business!"
Vicki's daughter Briana was never a huge fan of Brooks, which caused no small amount of friction between the super close mom and daughter. And when Briana suggested her mom had changed? Well, let's just say Briana got to see her mom's hot temper first-hand.
"You’re out of line!" Vicki said. "I’m not changing. Because guess what, for once in my life I’m happy, and you’ve known me always miserable. I wasn’t happy with your father, he was a drug addict and an alcoholic. It is not easy to be me right now — it’s not easy. Brooks matters to me and I’m not going to say it doesn’t!"
THE EVIL EYE
Tamra and Vicki have had a lot of ups and downs over the years. Their biggest down? In season 7, when Tamra confronted Brooks over his claims that she was giving Vicki "the evil eye."
Standing up for her man, Vicki went off on her friend. "Tamra stop it. What are you doing, we’re friends!" she said. "He doesn’t tell me what to think. ... You’re psycho!"
"That’s disgusting how you talk to me in front of people," she added. "Shame on you. You’re supposed to be my friend no matter what. You don’t talk to me or him like that ever. You’re supposed to be my friend, my soulmate, my sister. That means you have respect for the man I love. I would never speak that way to Eddie, ever."
Before leaving, Vicki let Tamra know she wasn't backing down. "You be quiet now. 'Cause guess what, everybody’s always scared of you — I’m not scared of you," she said. "I love this man and you spoke terrible to him. So we’re out of here!"
Note to Orange County Housewives: Whatever you do, do not call Vicki a hypocrite.
Tamra learned that the hard way. While the ladies were zip-lining on vacation, Vicki said she was offended by the ladies' sex talk — even though she herself had just talked about sex.
"You can’t say one thing and do another. That’s what a hypocrite is," Tamra said.
Vicki wasn't pleased. "Tamra I would never say that to you," she yelled. "You stop talking about that. Say you’re sorry!"
MULTIPLE PARTNER MAYHEM
Lauri Peterson left RHOC after season 4, but when she returned as a friend of the Housewives in season 8, she made waves by claiming she had seen Vicki in bed with two other people.
Though Vicki admitted that she was unfaithful to Donn while they were married, she made it clear that Lauri's claims were false.
"Not cool what you’re doing," Vicki said, confronting Lauri on the ski slopes during a girl's trip. "Multiple partners? We were watching a movie. You’re filthy Lauri, shame on you!"
"I have never been with multiple partners in my life!" she screamed. "You’re disgusting. You’re filthy. I thought you were older and bigger and smarter than that. You’re not a classy lady. You are a liar. Good luck with your life, Lauri."
After her performed a controversial standup comedy set that compared Vicki's looks to Miss Piggy, Slade had to face off with a very frustrated Vicki, who made it clear that he had crossed the line, in the season 8 finale.
"Be careful of your tongue when you're talking about women's looks," she screamed at Slade.
"I’m proud of who I am, what I look like — I did get a tweaking," she continued, admitting to getting a facelift. "I’m not Miss Tupperwear, I’m not Miss Plastic. The fact of the matter is, when you make fun of a woman’s looks, it’s disrespectful and I find it very hurtful."
"At the end of the day, I think I’m better and beautiful ... and I’m going to keep striving to be the best I can be," she added. "Just be careful of your tongue, it’s very hurtful."
BROOKS & THE BREAKUP BREAKDOWN
Brooks and Vicki split and got back together many times, the harshest of which occurred during the season 8 reunion when he broke up with her on camera: "Good luck, I love you."
Breaking down in tears, Vicki admitted "I hate my life right now."
"I want to have what I had before," she said, as the cast surrounded her in support. "I just want my family back. I just want my family back."
A DEVASTATING LOSS
Unquestionably the most heartbreaking of Vicki's storylines came when she learned on camera about the death of her mother, Joanne Steinmetz.
It all happened at Shannon's Bunko party, when Vicki received a call from her daughter Briana. "Oh, my God. I don’t want to believe this," she said, collapsing on the floor. and breaking into tears. "I just talked to her this morning."
“I just want my mom back. I want my mom,” Vicki continued. “I have to go see my mom right now. I want to be with my mom. I need her every day. I need her so bad. Who’s going to worry about me? I don’t have parents now. I need my parents. I need my mom."
THAT TIME SHE COMPARE HERSELF TO JESUS
It may have been Tamra's baptism, but with the constant questions and confusion surrounding Brooks' cancer, it was Vicki who felt crucified in the season 10 finale.
"I’m being nailed to the cross like Jesus was," Vicki said, defending herself. "He’s Jesus Christ and he did nothing wrong and He was nailed to the cross — that’s how I feel!"
"I know Jesus and I know the truth and I’m good with it," she said. "These women don’t deserve it — they can go and talk all they want. It’s constant, every f---ing time I’m around these women, it’s constant. I’m done. I don’t deserve it. I’ve done nothing wrong here!"
Costume parties never seem to go over well on RHOC, and Shannon's '70s party was no exception. While Shannon and Kelly Dodd were butting heads, Shannon's husband David confronted Vicki about negative comments she was saying about his wife.
Not one to back down from a fight, Shannon got into David's face. "Shame on you. You’re filthy," Shannon told him — after he called her a "pig" and "the lowest of the low."
"You’re a cheater and a bad guy," she said storming away.
A SHOCKING THREAT
With Shannon refusing to forgive Vicki for her role in Brooks' cancer scheme, the two women were on the outs for most of season 11. But when Vicki was hospitalized after an ATV accident, Shannon reached out days later.
That wasn't enough for Vicki, who called Shannon’s voicemail message "just to save face."
When the two came face to face, Vicki was icy — even threatening to reveal a damaging secret about Shannon's marriage ...
BEADOR BUST UP
Vicki's secret was actually an allegation: Shannon, Vicki claimed, had been physically abused by David.
Though Shannon denied the accusation, Vicki didn't back down at the season 11 reunion. "She made me out like a con woman and I didn’t lie," Vicki screamed after Shannon stormed off crying. "I didn’t go on a cancer scam!"