During most of that time, Vicki was regarded as a reason for the show’s success and was (at that point) the longest-running castmate in its history.
“Why don’t [the producers] want to go back to what was successful?” she asked Kelly, who was fired after season 15 (before the ratings began dropping).
Kelly’s husband, Rick Leventhal, asked what Vicki would change regarding her era of the show. The star said she’d “change the fact that [she] divorced a good man.”
After almost 20 years of marriage, Vicki left her husband Donn Gunvalson, who was popular among the cast and fanbase. In her interview with Kelly, Vicki shared that she grew “too big for [her] britches,” and she believes the relationship could have been repaired had the couple stayed together.
According to Vicki, Donn maintains a good relationship with her daughter, Briana. On an Instagram Q&A, Vicki previously revealed that she herself is in touch with Donn, and they’re on good terms.
On Kelly’s show, the alums indicated they weren’t impressed with the new cast. They believe the dream team — Vicki, Shannon, Tamra, and Kelly — would deliver the show to its former success.
As of now, Tamra is back in the cast, and Shannon never left. The return of Kelly and Vicki is perhaps just a pipe dream. Just a few months ago, however, many viewers felt the same way about Tamra.
Tamra’s performance in the upcoming season — good or bad — may determine the fate of her benched teammates.
Season 17 of The Real Housewives of Orange County is currently filming.