Don't let the smiles fool you -- the women of The Real Housewives of New Jersey are back and feistier than ever. With the season five premiere of the Bravo reality series just a couple of months away, Jacqueline Laurita, Teresa Giudice, Caroline Manzo, Melissa Gorga, and Kathy Wakile put their differences aside to sit for a cast portrait. And Us Weekly has the exclusive shot!
The photo finds the ladies dressed to the nines and sitting pretty, but Manzo -- author of Let Me Tell You Something: Life as a Real Housewife, Tough-Love Mother, and Street-Smart Businesswoman -- assured Us that things would be plenty messy once the season gets underway. This picture is like the calm before the storm.
"Listen, New Jersey delivers. Trust me," she dished to Us of the upcoming fifth season, which begins on June 2 at 8 p.m. "We always think, 'We can't top this here. Can't top this, can't top that,' and then something happens and we all look at each other and say, 'Can you believe that just happened?' And there's a lot of that going on this year. A lot of 'Can you believe that just happened' moments. A lot of them."
No doubt some of them involve her relationship with Giudice, with whom she had a blowout fight last season. "I would probably equate it to ice-skating on a lake where half of it, the sun is shining hard on the lake and the other half is solid ice. You don't know what you're skating on," she told Us of where they stand following their tentative reconciliation.
"I wouldn't call it thin ice. I would call it unpredictable. That's a good word. Unpredictable," she said. "This entire season is unpredictable. You think you've got it down, but you really don't."
The drama certainly makes for good television, but it doesn't necessarily make for a great life. "It's exhausting, but it's just a job. It's my job," she told Us. "That's it. Plain and simple, but this year definitely will have literally everyone from one minute to the next, things change that quickly. Highs and lows. It's like a wild ride. You don't know what the hell's going on from one minute to the next."