The Real Housewives of New Jersey kicked off its eighth season on Wednesday night.


Margaret Josephs is the newest member of the crew, who sports pigtails and runs her own fashion business, which seem like they should be two mutually exclusive things. Teresa Giudice, however, has the biggest story of the night. Her husband Joe is still in prison and she lost her mother between seasons. The drama has brought her closer with her brother Joe Gorga, though he’s struggling to be the man of the house.

The episode opens with us learning about Giudice’s mother, who died after a bad case of pneumonia. Her father is taking the loss hard, and Joe is becoming closer with Melissa as a result.

Delores Catania, meanwhile, is moving back in with her cheating ex-husband Frank, despite the fact that she’s dating an OB/GYN. Siggy is out and about giving motivational talks while promoting her new book, and husband Michael is growing weary of how busy she is. Melissa is happy that her store, ENVY, is all hers again after Jackie and Kim D. claimed all the clothes.

The ladies decide to fly to Boca Raton, Florida, to celebrate Melissa’s birthday. New girl Margaret admits to the group that she walked out on her husband of 17 years with the man she is convinced she is “meant to be” with.

But finally we get to the juicy details of Teresa and Joe. He is currently serving out his jail sentence while Teresa is left to take care of their kids. The loss of her mother, though, has put a pin in her devotion to her husband – she had to serve 11 months in prison because of him, and it turned out to be the end of her mother’s life, costing her almost a year of precious mother-daughter time.

Her change in heart also allows her to mend her relationship with longtime foe Danielle Straub. She’s already lost her mother, and the pair seem to bond over the shared sadness. Danielle joins the rest in Boca. Danielle and Siggy feud a little over what a man should demand of his wife, but it passes. The women push and prod each other, but overall the trip is without drama.

But the drama can’t be far away, as there’s still have an entire season of New Jersey housewivery to be had. The ladies will embark on a trip to Milan, there will be more marital spatting over Joe, and of course Danielle and Kim D. will become enemies later in the season. Tune in next week for a continuation of season 8 on Bravo.

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