Real Housewives of New Jersey alum Caroline Manzo was a fan favorite in the early days of the franchise. Her no-nonsense approach to life and her RHONJ co-stars made for great television and had fans praising her for being real.
While fans were fond of Caroline’s upfront opinions and vocal nature, there were several times throughout her time with the show that she managed to create waves with fellow castmates, including the RHONJ personality fans have always loved to hate — Danielle Staub.
Arguably one of the most memorable moments in RHONJ history, Caroline and Danielle sat down for a face-to-face conversation to discuss Danielle’s continuing conflict with members of Caroline’s family, including her niece, Ashlee.
What happened next went down in RHONJ history and during a recent episode of Housewives Nightcap, Caroline revealed how that confrontation impacted her and whether or not she regretted calling Danielle “a clown.”
Caroline’s confrontation with Danielle went south fast
During their heated exchange, Caroline attempted to talk some sense into Danielle who was constantly bashing her niece, Ashlee. After a physical altercation that found Ashlee pulling at Danielle’s hair, things quickly went off track when Danielle refused to take responsibility for her part in the conflict.
“The bottom line is this, okay?” Caroline snarled. “You can say what you want to say and you can portray yourself however you choose to portray yourself. You are not fooling me, okay? And you’re not fooling too many other people.”
When Danielle snapped that Caroline had no right to judge her, Caroline delivered the final blow.
“Do you want to know something? Do you know what you are?” she questioned sarcastically. “Know what you are? You’re a clown.”
She continued, “Your whole life is a joke…No matter how hard you try, no matter what you do, no matter who you talk to, okay? You will not hurt me. Do you know why? I have integrity okay and I sit here and I tell you the truth. Okay? And when I called you garbage, I meant that you were garbage.”
How does Caroline feel about calling Danielle ‘a clown?’
During her chat with Housewives Nightcap hosts Emily Orozco and Lauren Herbert, Caroline reflected on her infamous showdown with Danielle, and dished on how she feels about it today.
“At the time it was very serious, but I’m sure now you could probably laugh about it. When you called Danielle a clown. That was, like, so iconic. It was just the exact thing we needed to hear. Do you remember what was going through your mind during that time?” Emily asked Caroline.
Caroline explained that she did remember the moment, and said that she didn’t initially want to film the conversation, but knew that she had a job to do for the show. She continued to share that when she walked into the venue, she was met by two security guards who towered over her, and that was enough to upset her before the conversation even began.
“That got me goin’,” Caroline said. “Like, you idiot, you fool. Are you looking for optics here? What are you looking for?”
She continued to share, “I really tried to talk sense into her.”
But Danielle just wasn’t understanding Caroline’s message, and eventually, she was just over the dramatics.
So, when she called Danielle a clown, Caroline says, “it just came out of my mouth.”
“Often, Andy will say to me, ‘Well, do you feel badly about that?’ I said, ‘I don’t feel bad about it because it was my truth. It still is my truth. I feel bad that I had to say it. I feel bad that it was not a nice thing to say. It’s not nice to call somebody a clown,” she admitted.
However, Caroline concluded that if she was in the same scenario again, she’d probably “react the same way” so she will never apologize for it.
There seems to be no love lost between Caroline and Danielle, and if anything is for certain, Caroline Manzo is still one of the most real Housewives to have graced reality television.
Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on Bravo.