Fellow Kardashian Kitties, our long national nightmare is over. (Snoozefest is probably more accurate. Nightmares, at least, allow you to feel something.) After nine episodes—half of which were about Kim squeezing her ass into a dead woman’s garment—The Kardashians Season 2 culminates in yet another high-fashion event. And once again, Kim does her best to convince us that this one’s actually a really big deal.
To her credit, this Balenciaga show in Paris is kind of a big deal, given that Kim is modeling a gown and not just an observer. If you were on Twitter this past July, you’ve probably already seen videos of her Ramona Singer walk, which she showed off on the runway alongside Dua Lipa, Nicole Kidman and Naomi Campbell. The fittings before the show are about as exciting as Kim’s robotic strut. But we get to see North West wearing cool outfits and be generally more charismatic than her mother, which is something?
It turns out we don’t see Kravis’ SponCon wedding after all and get a quaint dinner with their blended families instead. Meanwhile, Kylie is dragging her daughter Stormi to the Billboard Music Awards and reminding us how hard it is to be a young, hot mom. Overall, we don’t get the impression that this family wants to return for a third season—unless Kris Jenner says so, of course. Let’s break down this deeply underwhelming finale one couture fitting at a time.
Coleman: Well. We’re here. After 10 entire episodes, we have come to the end of Season 2. And with nothing to show for it. Sure, I’ll have a few special memories here and there (the doctors whacking Kris Jenner’s hip bone with all the force of a Level 8 earthquake; Kris getting THC poisoning at a Mexican restaurant; Kris picking out a peacock for no reason—really just Kris stuff), but let’s get into the truth of the matter before breaking down this episode: This season was a flop.
Kyndall: It isn’t lost on me that the best part of the finale is 15-year-old footage of Kris falling to the ground while grabbing on to Kim’s skirt like a life raft on their first media trip to Paris. She also wears this amazing blazer with dagger-sharp shoulders and a striped top underneath that makes her look like a ’90s Batman villain and the Hamburglar. She’s really made up for her children’s blandness this season, which makes me curious about what happened there genetically. But other than that, this season ends on a super predictable note. Kim has another fashion thing! What a shock!
Coleman: I’m sure I won’t be the only one of the 17-29 people who still watch this show who Googled exactly when Kim was in Paris to walk the Balenciaga show, which was back in July. So, if we get the chalk out and tally, we had three episodes solely about Kim trying to fit into Marilyn Monroe’s dress for an event in May, and then we time-jumped forward two months. So much for being a “docuseries” that follows their lives as they happen. But I won’t complain, because I’m fucking tired of Calabasas.
Meanwhile, Kylie has been left behind in the ether for our sole B-plot of the episode: getting ready for the Billboard Music Awards?! Hit me over the head with a rolling pin, Tom & Jerry-style. What? Why? This whole episode felt like an out of body experience where I saw myself sitting on my couch with eyes completely glazed over 10 weeks in a row, while the echo of TS Madison saying, “Let’s get into these flops, bitch!” rings through the air.
Kyndall: I couldn’t bear to listen to Kylie talk about how she’s SO conflicted about leaving the house as a new mom for the 50th time when half of my Explore page on Instagram is photos of her frolicking around Los Angeles with @stassiebaby and Hailey Bieber. Also, her appearance at our fifth most important music awards show had some significance given that it was Travis Scott’s first televised performance since the Astroworld tragedy. I remember people on Twitter criticizing Kylie’s decision to bring Stormi as some sort of shield. And she goes out of her way to explain that she didn’t force Stormi to come—as if a 4-year-old can comprehend the stakes of attending this event. But other than that, the most exciting part of this subplot is watching Stormi politely order room service.
Coleman: They say these women aren’t influencers anymore, but hearing Stormi order chicken tenders and fries firmly planted the idea that I need chicken tenders and fries as soon as humanly possible. Like I might descend into a fit of rage if I don’t get my hot little hands on some Applebee’s tenders. I can’t talk about it right now. Kyndall you get it, Ms. Chili’s.
Kyndall: I see you. Thank you for bringing my affinity for Chili’s Grill and Bar into this. (Side note: their chicken tenders are worlds better than Applebee’s.)
Coleman: That was a great catch about Kylie specifically saying she didn’t force Stormi to come—these women really are always plotting something! And speaking of roping your kid into a weird moment they didn’t ask for, we’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about Kim telling poor North about her conception-by-Olivier-Rousteing dress, which is knowledge I think she could’ve firmly gone a few more years without being privy to.
Kyndall: I’m jarred by how casually Kim just divulges information about her previous sexcapades in front of whomever, like a monotone Samantha Jones. North is too young to register how cringe-y this story is. It was also hilarious for Kim to imply that if she hadn’t worn this pretty—but not, like, super sexy—Balmain gown that Kanye would not have had sex with her that night or ever?
Speaking of people with no discretion, we head over to dinner with Kourtney, Travis, and their combined children. And shockingly, we’re spared from a makeout sesh. However, it’s clear their children are traumatized from, every time they look up from their plate of cucumbers, seeing their parents swap spit, as they immediately look down at their phones as soon as they sit down.
Coleman: They were being served raw, unseasoned broccolini finished with an oxygen sauce, so I’m not surprised that all of Travis’ kids were tip-tappin’ away on their phones. You know that’s how a typical dinner goes when the cameras aren’t up: the kids ruining their developing posture with their necks craned down at their devices to avoid their dad and soon-to-be-step-mom tonguing at the head of the table.
I kept thinking that if I were those kids and Kourtney Kardashian suggested that we all put our phones away at dinner, I’d hit her with a classic, “You’re not my mom!” At this point, that’s what we need. The kids need to bring us some drama, because the elder Kardashians have all but lost their spark. Speaking of a missing spark, I think something that was evident this season—that we sort of already knew—was that whenever Khloé or Kris are not on screen, this show completely implodes. I’d love to say it goes off the rails, but that would require a force majeure of energy that these women simply just do not have.
Kyndall: Travis’ kids are shockingly polite and well-behaved. I would be too, if I had a walking joint as a father. The kid cameos in this episode were definitely fun to watch. I especially enjoyed seeing tiny Reign nearly drown in his king-sized bed, which was very humbling as a 26-year-old with a full.
Khloé is at her best when she’s with Kris, so it would’ve been nice if she came along on this otherwise uneventful Balenciaga trip. Were we impressed by any of the fashion we saw? I’ll say that I’m enjoying Kim experimenting with pinstripes and a goth-adjacent look.
Coleman: Kim’s bleach-blonde hair really does work for me. Somehow, it didn’t look that good at the Met Gala, but against a black leather (fashion-heads, if it was satin, please don’t come for me—I can’t tell!) Balenciaga gown, it’s gorgeous. I also loved her matching nose chains with North at the Gaultier show. But the nervous energy she had around Demna Gvasalia was terrifying, and clearly rubbing off on North, who looked worried. And it made me worried! I would also be nervous if I was one degree of separation from Bella Hadid, so I kind of understand it, ultimately. Kim telling Demna to his face that she was nervous because the last time she had walked in a fashion show was an Ed Hardy show in LA Fashion Week might actually be one of the funniest moments from this season. The photos, oh my god. The ultimate throwback.
I also think that the trips were actually my favorite part of this season—save for Kourt and Trav’s snooze cruise to Milan. Kim’s separate escapade in Milan, the trip to Paris (even if it was a little boring), and even Kris and Khloé’s trip to the desert, if we want to count that, were all highlights of the season. Those episodes proved that it has always taken some extra production magic to make this family turn on the charm. I’m not sure why they’ve been content to think that watching them trudge around their California palaces in head-to-toe, skin-tight leather is enough to fill ten episodes of a reality show. Or “docuseries,” give me a break. Do you feel similarly, Kyndall?
Kyndall: I feel much differently about the trips. A change of scenery is nice, obviously. But the storylines are equally boring to me. I also feel like it gave the Kadashians an excuse not to work as hard to entertain us, knowing we’d be impressed by the location. Also, the best episode took place at Kris' house when she ambushed Khloé with Martha Stewart and, later, an actual peacock at a peacock farm. No matter how much this season flopped, we’ll always have the memory of Martha casually pulling out photos of her now-slaughtered peacocks from a manila folder and Khloé losing a man’s precious bird.
Coleman: Okay, I guess I’ll just go fuck myself. Just kidding, you’re right, actually. I am swayed easily with swanky trips to beautiful places and couture shows, but they were working just as hard (which is to say, not very hard at all) on the homefront as well. I guess as a longtime fan of Keeping Up…, I constantly felt frustrated with this season, which in turn contributed to a distaste for this new show. We’ve seen the ups and downs in quality over on E!, but I’ve never seen them take a nosedive quite this significant and stay down. Even when I have an occasional laugh, it’s never enough to grip me or to make me interested in the show’s longevity.
I know these women will be around forever; they’ve proven as much in the last 15 years. But do we think this show has a future? I’ll be honest, a Season 3 does not seem appealing from a viewer’s standpoint. No one seems particularly interested in doing this show. At least that’s how it appears to me. Where do the Kardashians—and The Kardashians—go from here? Where would you like to see them go?
Kyndall: I’m not sure why they think they still need a reality show in the first place. At first, I assumed it was mainly a tool for PR cleanups. And we’ve seen it used that way after Kim’s infamous Variety interview. But the controversies surrounding them currently are so dark that they’re not willing to address any of it, even vaguely, and risk saying the wrong thing. As a celebrity manager in my head, I would tell them exactly what I would tell Khloé after Tristan’s second cheating scandal: Know when to let go!
Season Sibling Superlatives
Strongest Family Member: Kyndall and Coleman have deliberated backstage, and we’ve reached a resounding consensus here. After tallying the votes, the Season’s Strongest Sister is indisputably Kris Jenner. While Kristen has always been our North Star, she came to play in Season 2, and was the single most watchable element of all 10 episodes. Whether she was losing her marbles on 5mg of edibles, finagling a way to get Martha Stewart to her home with exotic birds, or getting (jokingly?) roasted by her own mother for being a loose flight attendant, there was no hurdle Kris couldn’t leap over with grace and tenacity. Thank you, Kris Jenner, for holding our attention. We are forever in your debt.
Best Hip Surgery: This one goes to, you guessed it, Kris, whose janky hip and subsequent surgery provided us with the most laughs—and some disgust when Kim revealed she wants to make jewelry out of her mother’s bones. From her loony marijuana trip to that extremely violent surgery scene, she really put her body on the line for our amusement.
Best Peacock Shopping Trip: Yet another example of Kris’s comedic genius!
Best Brain Scan Revelation: Looking back, this was actually the tipping point of Khloé’s slow, season-long descent into high-vibration anxiety. Oh, how we long for the Khloé that sat on the bed with Kendall, yelling at a laptop because a test she took online said that she was not resilient. Every time Khloé reminds us that she went through a windshield when she was 18, I’m grateful—and I mean that! Car safety is paramount. “I’m resilient, I’m powerful, I’m strong, I have head trauma” has become my morning mantra.