Bravo has kicked Jill Zarin, Alex McCord, Kelly Bensimon and Cindy Barshop off of The Real Housewives of New York, although the network insists it was a friendly departure. Did Bravo make the right decision?
My initial thought on this is no, Bravo did not make the right decision. First of all, I wonder why Ramona Singer, LuAnn De Lesseps and Sonja Morgan made the cut over the other women. I can see why the countess was kept, especially because word has it that she's friends with the women being added to replace Jill, Alex, Kelly and Cindy. And, she's got a lot going on with her new boyfriend and everything. However, Ramona isn't too exciting and Sonja's just kind of a mess...and she's no longer rich or a housewife! If I recall correctly, the point of the cast change was to bring in real society women with real money, and while Sonja still may be a society woman, but she no longer has the money.
I will definitely miss Jill Zarin on the show. I also think she'll really miss being on the show. I read some of her book, Secrets of a Jewish Mother, and she not only focuses on motherhood but her friendships on The Real Housewives of New York as well. Not everything was positive, but she was open about her feelings. It also came across that she truly values her time on the show and the benefits that come with it.
As for Alex McCord, Kelly Bensimon and Cindy Barshop, I can see why they were let go. Alex and Simon Van Kempen were fun, but they were kind of a novelty on the show, and they lived in Brooklyn, not Manhattan like the others. Kelly's nothing without sidekick Jill, and Cindy just didn't make a splash during her debut season.
It's notable that Patti Stanger of The Millionaire Matchmaker was quick to stand up for Jill, and in doing that, noted that the two are collaborating on a possible new project. It's possible that Bravo anticipates this new show hitting the air and didn't want Jill appearing on RHONY and the new show. Or, Bravo's just sick of Jill's shenanigans. Word has it she's quite a diva and she's pulling all kinds of fake publicity stunts, like hiring people to post positive things about her on Twitter.
I'm not totally surprised by the RHONY shakeup, especially because RHODC was cancelled and RHOBH took on new castmate Brandi Glanville. The Bravo network seems to know that their shows may be losing their moments in the sun and may be trying to shake things up to retain viewers.