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Total Divas Recap: S1E5 “Feuding Funkadactyls”

Updated: Aug 8, 2023

Previously on Total Divas: Brie thought Nikki was fat and was super rude about it. Ariane wanted breast implants and was obnoxious about it until she decided that she wanted to be a role model instead. Nattie and TJ fought about how TJ isn’t romantic and doesn’t want a wedding and Nattie ran away from him even though he’s the one that drove them to the courthouse. 


This week, we open with Eva Marie applying bronzer to her entire body before she goes to the gym with JoJo. JoJo questions why Eva is doing this and Eva replies that John Cena might be in the gym, so she has to look good. Naturally. Also, I can see why Nikki Bella has issues with Eva. So, the two newbies (are we still calling them that?) go to the gym and who do they run into? Roman Reigns, of course. Both women go to introduce themselves and start flirting with him which I’m sure is exactly what Roman wanted to happen in the middle of his workout. Eva says that Roman is “so hot” which I’m sure her fiance, V-neck Jonathan, will love to hear about.

We then move to Florida where Nattie and TJ are hanging out in their pool and Nattie gets upset because TJ wrecks Nattie’s hair even though they are in a pool and I’m not sure what she expected. TJ’s mom, Cheryl, calls and Nattie answers it. Nattie explains to us in the confessional that it is her birthday week and she will be in her and TJ’s hometown of Calgary for Raw, so everything is perfect. She also takes the time to tell us that Cheryl is a “mother-in-law from hell”.


Nattie is talking to Cheryl and clearly is trying to hand off the phone to TJ who decides to go underwater where he can’t answer it. I gotta admit, that man is slick. Anyway, TJ eventually takes the phone and tells his mom that he and Nattie have a hotel room booked for the week. Cheryl is not a fan of this idea and insists that Nattie and TJ (or at least just TJ) stay with her. Nattie explains that she doesn’t want to stay with Cheryl because she has a one-bedroom house and demands Nattie sleep in the bed with her while TJ sleeps on a pullout couch. That is… very weird and I honestly don’t blame Nattie for not wanting to sleep in the same bed as her mother-in-law as a grown adult. We’ll be coming back to this disaster shortly. 

Meanwhile, another disaster is brewing between Ariane and Trin. Ariane shows up to Trin’s hotel room on a day off and is all done up like is about to have a photoshoot or something. Trin, rightfully so, is still in bed because she wants to relax on her day off. Trin explains to us that she and Ariane are opposites and are like night and day, but somewhere mesh well together. Ariane demands that the two of them spend the day shopping and Trin isn’t too thrilled about it. This is just the beginning of an entire episode of Trin being rightfully annoyed at Ariane. 


We head backstage where the Bellas and the Funkadactyls are filming a backstage promo. It is really not great, but it is what it is, that’s not why we’re here. The Bellas tell the Funks (not THE Funks) that they are traveling to see their grandma (nana) while they have a week off and Brie mentions that she is also going to meet up with their dad. Nikki says that she doesn’t want to see him because they have a tough relationship. He struggled with addiction and was in and out of her life, so it is understandable why she is hesitant.

Later on, we go to John Cena’s house where he and Nikki are hanging out and John is trying to teach Nikki Chinese for reasons that are not explained. Nikki gives us the absolute gem of a line, “Chinese is literally like Chinese” and I think she is basically the Aristotle of our generation. John Cena randomly brings up Nikki’s dad and they have a discussion about how she hasn’t been in contact with him. John tells her that she should meet with her dad and reach out so, like usual, Nikki listens to her therapist, John, and does whatever he says. She later meets up with Brie at the gym to tell her that she changed her mind about meeting with their dad and she wants Brie to go with her. Brie says absolutely she will go with her and they’ll get something planned.


In Calgary, Nattie has a match with the Bellas and she makes the comment that she taught the Bellas how to wrestle and the Bellas taught her how to be a Diva, but yet doesn’t go into how to be a Diva or even what they taught her. Nattie and TJ are then in their hotel room when Cheryl calls again. Nattie tells us that she and TJ had plans to do things around Calgary and go out to dinner together.

After being on the phone with Cheryl, TJ decides that he is going to go stay with her and leave Nattie in the hotel room by herself. I truly hope that this is all just for the show because why is TJ, a grown man, leaving his fiancee at a hotel by herself to go stay with his mom? It’s all really weird and kind of gives off some red flags. Nattie is mad and rightfully so. 


The Funkadactyls, Vinny, and my favorite, Jon Uso, are at a boutique opening that Ariane dragged all of them too. Trin is not thrilled about it and it really isn’t her scene, but that doesn’t stop Ariane from forcing her to pose in front of the paparazzi. Ariane is clearly working the cameras and loves all of the attention while Trin would rather be anywhere else.


The tension continues to build as later on Trin and Ariane are working on a new dance routine at the Performance Center. Trin has a whole routine kind of figured out and Ariane is annoyed because she isn’t a dancer so the moves are hard for her. Ariane tries to make the entire thing sexy and tells Trin that it’s not about the moves, it’s about the facial expressions and working the camera. Trin tells her that they can figure that part out later and first they need to get the routine down. The tension continues to build. 


In our other messy storyline of the episode, Nattie is going out to lunch with TJ and his mother Cheryl. Again, I swear that 85% of this show is about people going out to eat. Nattie receives an unpleasant surprise when TJ’s sister, Valerie, meets them at the restaurant to join them. Nattie is also not a fan of Valerie. Valerie and Cheryl start talking about how they love having TJ around and Cheryl has been making him hot chocolate every night and they’ve been watching a ton of movies while Nattie just sits there with an awkward look on her face and nods.

Seemingly out of nowhere, Valerie tells Nattie and TJ that they need to start talking about having children which is super out of line and really not a discussion that should be brought up by someone that isn’t TJ and Nattie. Valerie also tells them that they should go to premarital counseling to work out their issues and every time Valerie opens her mouth, I understand even more why Nattie isn’t a fan of her. It’s all around such an awkward conversation and I totally understand why Nattie was not on board to spend all her time in Calgary with TJ’s family. 


We jump to Brie and Nikki visiting their grandmother’s house. Their brother, JJ, is also there and everyone seems to be in good spirits. We learn a little more about the Twins’ backstory and find out that their grandma and their grandpa, who sadly passed years prior, basically raised them and were a big influence in their lives. In one funnier moment of this visit, Brie starts telling Nana about compost toilets and how they work, and how Bryan wants to have them. Nana is disgusted and tells Brie to tell Bryan to have a chat with Nana about the compost toilets which made me laugh because same, Nana.


Later on, the Bellas and JJ meet up with their dad. Nikki opens up to their dad about the pain he caused her and all of her feelings really open up to him. Dad apologizes and it is actually a really good conversation I think everyone walked away from the conversation feeling better about the situation and on the way to healing. Nikki and her dad even hugged when everyone was getting ready to leave. This scene was a nice break from the general chaos of the rest of the episode.

In Calgary, Nattie decides to go tanning, but not just at any tanning salon; she chooses the salon that her friend, Jaret, owns. We learn that Jaret has an amateur wrestling background and trained Nattie. I truly would love to know how he ended up owning a tanning salon, but we never find that information out. Jaret is clearly flirting with Nattie, but she is completely oblivious to it. He tells her that her bikini is great and keeps staring at her. It’s really unprofessional and kind of uncomfortable. He also spray-tans her while wearing jeans.


Now, I don’t know what people should be wearing when they spray tan someone, but jeans just feel like it would not be the ideal outfit. I don’t know. Someone correct me if I’m wrong. Nattie makes a comment that she is happy Jaret is living a happy and fulfilling life, but he is literally in love with Nattie and is stuck working at a tanning salon while Nattie is in WWE and looks completely miserable, so I’m not sure how accurate that statement actually is. 

Elsewhere, Trin and Ariane are going go-karting with Eva Marie and Jojo because apparently Eva and Jojo are only around to accompany people on random things when the show needs more people involved. They decided to have a *friendly* competition to see who is best at go-karting. Ariane says she always wins everything, so she knows that she is going to win. She ends up being correct and Trin comes in last place. Eva was convinced she won, but she actually got second place. Ariane is being super obnoxious about winning as you can imagine and as Trin states, “She is acting like she won the Daytona 500 or something” and that is the perfect way to describe it.

As Ariane is going on about winning, Trin mentions that it’s fine because she’s the one that wins all the matches. Ariane doesn’t take to this very well and the two start arguing in the middle of the go-kart place with Eva and JoJo looking very uncomfortable. Trin ends up shoving Ariane and Ariane pushes her back which leads to Trin getting in her face. Ariane eventually walks away from Trin and, I’m assuming, leaves the building. All over go-karting which is absolutely hilarious.

In Calgary, TJ calls Nattie to tell her that he’s in the hotel lobby. It’s Nattie’s actual birthday today and she is expecting TJ to bring her somewhere nice for dinner. Nothing like your fiance taking time away from his mother to bring you to dinner. Unfortunately for Nattie though, TJ’s birthday plans for Nattie are taking her to his sister’s house for dinner.


Understandably, Nattie is super mad about this and says she doesn’t want to spend her birthday with TJ’s family and she is just going to go back up to her room and watch Nancy Grace. Yes, she actually said that. Nattie decides she doesn’t want to spend her birthday alone and calls Jaret to see if he wants to get dinner. This should go well. Of course, Jaret is all for this and we find out that he moved an entire section of the restaurant for just the two of them.

Meanwhile, TJ is probably playing Yahtzee at Valerie’s or something. It is very much a date-like setting and oblivious Nattie still thinks nothing of all of this. Jaret then drops a bombshell that *gasp* he is in love with her and doesn’t want her to marry TJ. Nattie acts as though she is shocked by this, but let’s be real, we’ve known Jaret for not even an entire episode and we all knew this was coming as soon as she went to the tanning salon.

Nattie says she is overwhelmed and awkwardly just laughs and sits there as he confesses his love to her. And that’s literally the end of Nattie’s story in this episode. We get absolutely zero closure and I have no idea if they will continue this in the next episode or not. I also would really like to know what kind of hot chocolate Cheryl made for TJ and what movies they watched but I guess I won’t get those answers, either.

We are now backstage again at Raw. Mark and Jane have all the women together and are going over plans for the evening. The Funks (not those Funks) find out they’re working together, which really shouldn’t be surprising to them since they’re literally a tag team, and Trin says that she would rather not work with Ariane that night. We learn that the two still haven’t spoken to each other since the go-kart debacle. Jane and Mark (still the worst people on this entire show) ask what is going on and Trin tells them that she would rather start at the bottom and work on a solo career than continue to team with Ariane and hate coming to work.

Ariane and Trin then start arguing with each other again and Jane says that she’ll set up a meeting between them and Stephanie McMahon. I love when Steph is on this show. Ariane tells Stephanie about the go-kart fight which is absolutely hilarious because imagine having to tell your boss about a fight you had because you were being obnoxious about winning. Stephanie tells Trin that shoving someone is not okay and that they can’t be fighting in public because it makes the company look bad and she will not tolerate unprofessionalism. Steph tells them that she will give both women a chance to prove themselves in singles matches. Trin will face Alicia Fox and Ariane will face Aksana.

Trin is super excited about her solo match because it is exactly what she wanted. Her match is up first and all the women, including Jane, are watching backstage. Trin is really showing her skillset in the match, although Nattie (please tell us what happened with Jaret) tells Jane that Trin looks winded and her conditioning isn’t where it needs to be. I’m not sure when Nattie became the ultimate expert and was put into a training/producing role, but here we are. Trin overshot a crossbody and landed on her face basically. Despite the rest of the match being fine, everyone is dwelling on the fact that Trin screwed up one single move and Ariane is basking in the fact that she believes Trin’s match didn’t go well.

Ariane should keep her mouth shut though because her match with Aksana is up next and it is bad. Really bad. Trin tries to say it’s bad in the nicest way possible by saying she is moving too quickly and fumbling, but we all know what she is really thinking. After the matches, Trin and Ariane get together and cry and talk about how they need each other, and like every other argument on this show, all is well again by the end of the episode. Except for Nattie’s story. I really hate how they ended it with her and weirdo Jaret in the restaurant and TJ probably being spoon-fed by his mom. 

NEXT WEEK: Divas Las Vegas!!!!! I am so excited because the Vegas episodes and the other vacation/party episodes are my absolute favorite of the entire series. I believe we are introduced to Brie Mode which is going to be incredible. Stay tuned.

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