Monday, February 20, 2012

Big Rich Texas: Season Two Premier Party

Hotel Zaza was the place to be Sunday night as over 300 style-setters, celebrity stalkers and A-list wannabes jammed into a soiree hosted by Heidi Dillon and Jarrod Fresquez benefiting The Fashionistas to kick off the latest season of Big Rich Texas.  Almost all of the cast was there, making it a head-turning event for fans who turned out to catch a glimpse of their favorite cast members.  So, who was missing? Let's see, because Pamela Martin was there, you can pretty much guess that Bonnie and Whitney and Leslie and Kalyn stayed far, far away. Which was very unfortunate because there was plenty of room in the space for the tigers to just circle the room and avoid each other.

(left) Melissa and Maddie Poe  (top) Grace and Connie Dieb
(bottom) Hannah Gelbart Martin and Pamela Martin Duarte

When I first walked into the VIP area ('cuz that's I roll, baby) there were two tubs with probably 8-10 bottles iced down in each one. Pamela Martin came over and was fiddling with them and I said, "Dang, Pam! You guys are totally planning a drunkfest for tonight!" (see photo above and you can see how I mistook them for vodka bottles) She was very excited to tell me that she and Hannah have been signed as the new spokesman for Seven Water (a high-end bottled water competing with Voss) and that's what she was serving.

Sipping champagne from my perch in VIP, I spied VH1 Football Wives star Dawn Neufeld, CW33 morning show host Danielle Vollmer, The A List: Dallas star Taylor Garrett (with his new cutie patootie boyfriend, Jeff), floral designer extraordinaire Shane Walker, Bling is the new Black T-shirt Queen Caitlin McConnell, Gina Ginsburg (who was launching The Hair Bar in Southlake the next day!), and good Lord, you couldn't miss Steve Kemble who came decked out in his BRT finery complete with a sequined vest embellished like the flag of Texas, a cowboy hat and the BIGGEST belt buckle known to man. Hilarious!

Cast Members of Big Rich Texas:  LeeAnne Locken, Heidi Dillon's assistant Linnea Thulin (aka "The Rakk"), Heidi Dillon, Pamela Martin Duarte, Hannah Gilbert, Maddie Poe, Connie Dieb, Grace Dieb, DeAynni Hatley, Shaye Hatley and Melissa Poe. Photo courtesy of Jarrod Fresquez.

They attempted to air the episode, but it was so loud in there, you couldn't hear a thing that was being said on the telly. Good thing I had the foresight to tape the show so I could watch it in gleeful detail when I got home later that night! So, did you watch?! Goodness gracious, they certainly kicked off the season with a BANG! Literally!  In the first 5 minutes, Pam and Bonnie were practically brawling over plastic-surgery accusations.  10 minutes later Bonnie is having to be pulled off Leslie. Note to self: do NOT get on Bonnie's bad side. She's small but is not afraid to kick your ass.  I don't recap episodes, but if you want a blow-by-blow, click over to read my friend Merritt Patterson's hilarious article.

(top) Heidi Dillon and Taylor Garrett, new BRT star DeAynni Hatley (in the middle) flanked by pals
(bottom) LeeAnne Locken and Steve Kemble, Dawn Neufeld and Hamilton Sneed

There are some changes to the show this year that should make this season fun, fun, fun!  I'm not going to give you any spoilers - although trust me, I have plenty of them!! First off, is the addition of a new Mother/Daughter trio: DeAynni, Amber and Shaye Hatley from Colleyville. I published a Q&A interview with DeAynni yesterday if you want to learn more about her.  In Episode 3, America will be introduced to two new fantastic "secondary cast members" Heidi Dillon and LeeAnne Locken. 

Let me clarify what I mean by "secondary" because I am so sick of everyone who has every walked onto this show calling themselves a "cast member" on their websites and in Bios for charity events and listing it in their Twitter bio. It's ridiculous. If this is the criteria, then I am a full-fledged cast member myself having appeared in multiple episodes last season and - oh yes, you will see me this season as well.  Here's MY criteria: if the Style Network does not have you listed on the Big Rich Texas website as a cast member. You are NOT a cast member. Making an appearance in a scene does not make you a cast member. Appearing in a scene and saying a couple of words, does NOT make you a cast member. This just means you have made "appearances". THAT'S IT.

LeeAnne and Heidi are "secondary characters" this season, meaning they are being introduced to the cast as "friend's of Pam's" this season. You will see them in many episodes. With lines and playing a part in the storyline.  (Oh and what a part they play!!!!  I so wish I could tell you more but I don't want to ruin it.)  If people react well to them, well then, we may see them upgraded next year. Time will tell.  So, hang on tight people. Last night's episode one was a little taste of the drama that is to come.

Tune in to Big Rich Texas on the Style Network every Sunday at 8PM/CST.