See also:

*L.A. Weekly's Real Housewives archives

*Real Housewives: Our Season 1 Pecking Order

Taking a cue from Mark Lisanti over at Grantland, we're organizing our Real Housewives of Beverly Hills coverage into a weekly Pecking Order. Check us out every Tuesday to see if your favorite Housewife is in the lead.

We'd love to say the third season of RHOBH kicked off last night with serious fireworks, but it didn't, really. More like firecrackers. Maybe. Or sparklers. Or more like those little popper things you get a New Year's that don't work half the time. But Brandi Glanville told us today to hold tight. “I just know it's the start of something crazy,” she says in an interview.

She's got some spring in her step this time around, considering she's now a full-fledged Housewife with an opening line and a diamond to hold and everything. “I think I have a little extra confidence knowing that it's not a trial basis, and I actually appear and get a paycheck, and these girls can't get rid of me,” she says with a laugh.

Brandi makes no bones about needing that paycheck. In her blog, Brandi writes, “I need this more than anyone else,” and explains to us that's because “they are all very rich. I rent a house. I live month-to-month, and like a lot of people I know, I don't have millions of dollars in the bank just sitting there … It's a big change for my lifestyle, and its helping me, hopefully, get to the place where I can be independent and not have to worry about whether my ex-husband is working or not.”

In other words, Brandi's getting hers, which is noble enough, we think, to put her in our top spot in this week's Real Housewives Pecking Order.

1. Brandi Glanville

As we mentioned, Brandi gets top billing first and foremost for making it on the show as an official cast member, unlike some other Fringewives we know who couldn't stop runnin' their mouths about $25,000 sunglasses and diamond lollipop holders. Additionally, she's on civil terms with everyone (at least for now), and Lisa Vanderpump's new bestie, despite (or perhaps because of?) some overt flirtatiousness with Lisa's husband, Ken Todd. “Plus I'm the tallest,” Brandi joked to us. Well, true.

2. Kyle Richards

Kyle is in the number two spot this week mostly because Kyle is Kyle. In the land of Housewives, she's knows how to walk that line of being a good friend you're also a little afraid of, which keeps the other women vying to be in her good graces. It's an art, really. Also, she has a hot husband who gave her a Maserati with a giant bow on it for what appeared to be no reason. Was it even her birthday? Or had she just been, like, extra nice that day? Geez Kyle. Teach us your ways.

A healthier looking Taylor Armstrong; Credit:

A healthier looking Taylor Armstrong; Credit:

3. Taylor Armstrong

Because she gained 10 pounds, and we're rooting for her. Things can only get better from last season, assuming there's no hiding in suitcases this time around. Lay of the white wine, Tay, and you have a good shot at staying in the top five.

4. Portia Umansky

Because she's four years old and everybody wants to come to her parties.

5. Lisa Vanderpump

Lisa would be higher on this list if not for that pink, bedazzled button-up top she wore in her interviews. Lisa, please! This is not Dynasty. We have to give her some credit, though, for not being that thing every Housewife is accused of at her worst — fake. Not inviting Adrienne to her swanky Villa Blanca anniversary party may have been a little harsh, but at least it was true to how she felt. As Adrienne once wisely stated, “friends don't sue friends,” which is true, as is “friends don't accuse friends of selling stories to the tabloids then expect to get invited to their swanky parties.” If we had a nickel for every time we learned that lesson the hard way…

6. Kim Richards

She's putting sentences together a little more quickly this year, which we commend her for, even if those sentences are “I've got a boot, and I can hear!” Plus she actually shows up to things! Which is a big step up from last season when she ditched nearly every event in favor of making out with her oogly manfriend and eating Cheetos. Also she apparently sees auras now, which could get really fun.

7. Yolanda Foster

OK we're just not feeling Yolanda yet. She comes off as way superior, which makes us wonder what she's doing on this show. Also we don't trust anyone who doesn't drink when they're not a recovering alcoholic. It's just a totally un-fun way to show people you're more put together than they are. (Is she a recovering alcoholic? If so, then Godspeed.) Plus, we're all for being good partners and what not, but spending all morning cutting fresh flowers to put on the tray you use to deliver tea to your “genius” husband feels irritatingly subservient. Yolanda has about 12 weeks to prove to us she's got some character beyond perfect wife whose main talent is taking jokes too seriously and shooting judgmental glances. We'll see.

Adrienne Maloof's mixed message flowers; Credit:

Adrienne Maloof's mixed message flowers; Credit:

8. Adrienne Maloof

We have little choice but to put Adrienne in a super low spot this week, considering she was the only Housewife not invited to Lisa's Villa Blanca party. Still, we don't think she'll stay here too long considering she clearly knows how to turn a snub on its head. Despite being cast out, her presence was felt when she sent a massive Alice in Wonderland-like flower arrangement and a lovely congratulatory note to Lisa in the middle of the party. Sincere gesture, or big “fuck you?” We have no idea, and we bet Lisa didn't either. Well played, Maloof.

9. Camille Grammer

Because RIP. Well not literally, but like, basically.

See also:

*L.A. Weekly's Real Housewives archives

*Real Housewives: Our Season 1 Pecking Order

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