‘Sister Wives’ Season 16 Episode 7 Recap: Guilt Tripping & Kody’s Control Slipping

We can’t think of a better word to describe you, Kody.

While the rest of the world has said goodbye to 2021 and hello to the clean slate of a New Year full of possibilities, Kody Brown and the four women he somehow convicted to marry him continue reliving their 2021 highlight reel each week via Sister Wives– a series that has coincidentally given us at least 2,022 reasons to dislike Kody. 

So with that, raise a glass of champagne– preferably one that’s room temperature and flat, much like this show– and cheers to another ‘Sister Wives’ episode full of Kody screaming and shouting like a toddler chaos and disarray.  

This episode picks up with Janelle still trying to cope with the extreme COVID rules Kody (definitely Kody and not Robyn…nope not Robyn at all) have attempted to force upon the Brown family. These rules, she reminds viewers, are followed firmly by Kody, Robyn and their nanny. (Janelle makes this statement while rolling her eyes and subsequently earning our respect.) 

Oh…and Meri, but no one really cares what Meri does. If she’s not hocking leggings to the housewives of America, she’s probably out wandering the trees of Coyote Pass, etching her and Kody’s initials into a tree trunk and hoping he’ll come back to her, or, you know, at least do a welfare check on her every few months to make sure she’s still alive.

“He’s coming. Yup…any minute now…he’ll be here….

With Kody making only brief outdoor appearances at Janelle’s home during the pandemic, Janelle decides to take advantage of the situation and guilt her sometimes-husband into trimming the trees in her yard.

Go Janelle! If Kody’s going to refuse to come inside your house, you might as well force him to do manual labor outside your house!

Kody is about as happy about this as we’d expect. (Apparently Robyn gave him a Hall Pass to leave their love nest and go deal with that darn Janelle…)

“Let’s make this quick, OK? I have a wife to get home to.”

Janelle points out the dead things he needs to take care of–– not counting their marriage and his hair–– before asking their sons Gabriel and Garrison to go inside. While we assume Janelle has sent her kids inside so she can continue arguing with their father, she does the opposite and apologies to Kody for the way she reacted to his rules the previous week. 

In our mind, this is how Janelle actually greeted Kody.

Janelle goes onto tell Kody she’s cool with most of his rules, but some of them– like wiping down groceries and leaving the mail outside for 24 hours– she can’t get onboard with. Still, Janelle vows to give it her best out of respect for Kody and Robyn.

Instead of taking the W, Kody throws in a dig about Robyn being the only wife who “sees the value” in essentially going along with everything he says/does/thinks/puts in his hair.  

“Biotch, talk to me after you’ve put in 20+ years with this fool.”

Janelle isn’t too fond of this statement (for obvious reasons) so she proceeds to tell Kody about the mental health struggles she’s been having throughout the pandemic. Rather than offering Janelle a socially distanced shoulder to cry on, Kody argues that her following his COVID rules would allow him to come around more.

Apparently in The Brain of Kody, his presence is the answer to all that ails Janelle. 

Don’t bet your LuLaRoe’s on it, Kody.

Kody insists if Gabriel and Garrison would just get the hell out of Janelle’s house “cease their social lives,” he would be able to come back to Janelle’s home. However, Janelle reminds Kody that Garrison has almost saved enough money to purchase his own home and she’s not going to make him dip into his funds and rent a place just to make Kody happy. 

Kody and Janelle continue going back and forth about the Brown Family COVID Commands, with Kody taking many opportunities throughout the conversation to pat himself on the back. 

“…to hop on a family video chat and give me the round of applause I so rightfully deserve.”

Kody says that he has to be like this because of the minor children, particularly Ariella (his youngest daughter with Robyn).

“I’ve got a four-year-old who needs a dad until she’s 21!” Kody says.

“Um….only 17 over here. Still needing a dad, too…”

Janelle tries to alleviate Kody’s concerns of Garrison and Gabriel gallivanting around town by telling Kody that Garrison “isn’t that social” to begin with, and Gabriel only hangs out with his girlfriend. Kody claims that when he was Gabe’s age, he kept himself occupied with mission trips, not girls–- something Kody went on to more than make up for later in life. 

“I used to treat every women the way I treat you, Christine, and Meri!”

In an attempt to not be like a regular mom, but rather a cool mom, Janelle suggests having Gabriel’s girlfriend move in with them for a couple of weeks so that she can celebrate the holidays with Gabriel and his family. Kody declines answering the question based on the family’s religious beliefs, essentially shutting down Janelle’s idea. 

Kody seems appalled that Janelle would even consider allowing her son’s girlfriend to move in temporarily. He seems like he’s ready to go get a tank of Holy Water to spray on Janelle (while he squirts down the back patio and rakes the leaves, of course). 

“The whole freaking family has just thrown those out the window!” Kody says of their religious beliefs (which…as you may remember…allow for Kody to have sex with four different women should he chose to). 

Apparently they’ve also thrown Kody’s sunscreen out the window too? 

Kody continues telling Janelle how sick he is of his children judging him for his “standards” and again, not appreciating all the sacrifices he’s making. He also expresses frustration over Janelle not siding with him on this issue, as he’s more than ready to kick their boys to the curb. 

Janelle makes it pretty clear she has no intention of evicting any of her children mid-pandemic, but she tells Kody she’ll talk to them, just so he’ll lower his voice and stop causing a ruckus in the front yard. 

Kody…among his own kind….

Once Kody scurries back to Robyn’s crib, Janelle gathers Gabe, Garrison and Savannah in the yard to talk about their father’s rules. Gabe says he has no intention of following said-rules. They also talk about exceptions to the rules for things like work, though Janelle can’t guarantee that Kody will ease up even in that case. 

Garrison suggests they all just lie to Kody about following his rules, but Janelle says it’s not right to lie– at least not in the presence of the cameras, anyway. 

“Dad wants to play stupid games, we can play along!” Garrison says. 

“Wink, wink!”

The boys tell Janelle they’re sick of not seeing their dad, who they say is acting childish, though they both admit they’re being childish, too. Still, everyone in Janelle’s household agrees the whole situation has them feeling emotional and rejected and still confused as to why Kody and Robyn need a nanny. 

In his confessional, Kody argues that he hasn’t been MIA for months like his family claims, and he’s actually “been at these places, like, every month.” 

“I go over there and heavy-breathe in the doorway every few weeks. What more do these kids want?!”

Gabe tells his mom he’s not willing to make any sacrifices to spend the holidays with the family.

“I’m mad at Dad,” Gabe says after hearing about Kody’s demands to bathe their mail and quit and/or not get jobs. “This is stupid.” 

Garrison then backs up his bro and says the two of them–- and Gabe’s girlfriend, we’re assuming?–- will just get a hotel for Thanksgiving. 

Janelle isn’t down with this idea (or Gabe’s plan to “turn up” at the local Sleep-Inn), and after some more venting from her children, she starts to let out some of her frustrations regarding Robyn, whom Kody has been “shacking up with” almost exclusively for nine months.

(Christine backs this timeline, claiming to have only seen Kody “just a handful of times” during that nine-month duration. So…to clarify….Robyn’s kids couldn’t be without Kody for a few weeks so he could go with Ysabel to her surgery, but Christine’s minor children have been without Kody for most of the year. Cool.)

Janelle miraculously gets her boys on board with doing whatever Christine and her family decide to do for the holidays, with Savanah agreeing as well (by default). 

“On a more encouraging note, dad didn’t call me Atlanta for the first time today…”

Later on, Janelle earns some good karma points by dropping off a belated birthday present to Robyn in an exchange colder than Robyn’s bath towels. 

“Is that disinfectant running down your face, or have you been crying again?”

After shuffling her towel warmer into the house, (and soaking it in a bucket of Lysol behind the door, we can assume).

Janelle says she’s grateful for polygamy, as she wouldn’t have the independence she has now. That same independence, however, is what has made it difficult for her to accept Kody’s rules, she tells Robyn. 

“I also tune out the second Kody opens his trap.”

Robyn tells Janelle how much she wants everyone to get along–- preferably while hold hands and frolicking as a family through Coyote Pass–- so they can all get back to living the polygamy life they signed up for, and so Kody will give her some space. Like, WAY MORE than 6 feet. 

We find out that even Robyis tired of having Kody around so much.

Cool. This still doesn’t explain why you need a nanny.

(Viewers are then treated to a montage of Kody’s wives talking about how much they each enjoy not having him around… except for Meri, of course.) 

Keep it in your LuLaRoe’s, Meri!

Robyn begins telling Janelle about all the monogamous men she could’ve married but chose not to because of her love of polygamy and, evidently, Kody. 

Sure, Jan…

“Full disclosure, most of those proposals were prefaced with, ‘Do you always cry this much?'”

Janelle says that she, too, has no desire to live monogamy, basically because polygamy allows for her to be on her own most of the time. Being married to Kody and only having to deal with him 1/4 of the time also means she’s not guilted into giving him the ol’ “pickle tickle” very often.

“I can just go to bed with a book and I love it!” Janelle says.

Robyn keeps trying to convince Janelle (and anyone else willing probably) to take Kody off her hands some of the time. 

“Finding Kody’s perm rods all over my house for nine months straight has been awful!”

Robyn tells the cameras later that having the family fall apart has been a “huge disappointment” to her. Robyn makes it clear that she blames the bad wives (aka Christine and Janelle) for the family’s split.

Later, it’s November 2020, and the Sister Wives and Kody meet up to reveal their Thanksgiving plans. Janelle reminds us that Kody’s COVID commandments were only just given to them and that, for the first nine months of the pandemic, they did not exist. But now, according to Kody, they are to be taken to be as important as “religion and Scripture.” 

Janelle kicks things off by saying that her kids are basically planning to do whatever Christine is doing. She reminds us that her kids love Christine because she was the one who raised them while Janelle was working outside the home and Kody was doing…whatever the hell Kody does. 

Kody is pissed because, now His Number 1 “Bad Wife” (Christine) gets to make the call on where half the family goes for Thanksgiving. You can almost see Kody trying to hold himself back so he doesn’t start stomping his feet right there in Meri’s wood pile.

Christine says that, due to Kody’s rules, her kids all want to go to Aspyn’s house in Utah. 

“Stay tuned, Kody. It gets better!”

“Wow,” Robyn says after Christine and Janelle say they’re going to Utah.

Kody literally can’t believe that Janelle and Christine are choosing to be around their children rather than him.

Robyn makes it clear that she’s unhappy that she will have to spend Thanksgiving without “everybody.”

Meri then jumps in, as it’s time for her hourly reminder that, on the Brown Family Importance Meter, she falls somewhere in between “trash bag for yard work” and “towel warmer.”

“I am not everybody!” Meri reminds them. 

“I’ll be lurking in the trees if anyone needs me!” 

Robyn then seems to invite Meri to their sanitizer-filled Thanksgiving. 

Meri tells us she’s frustrated that the Sister Wives are choosing not to be with the whole family for the holidays, essentially making Meri’s months of isolation useless.

We then get another glimpse of the real Robyn. When Kody says that he “appreciates where everyone is at” regarding the holidays, Robyn is quick to correct him.

“You appreciate it?” she asks, letting him know that his statement makes it sound like he approves of the Bad Wives’ decisions.

“You mean respect it? I don’t like the word ‘appreciate!'” Robyn tells him.

“Have fun with THAT, Kody!”

Kody then declares that he’s “not telling you guys how to live your lives anymore.” 

“You guys are independent women, you can do whatever you want,” he adds.

“But don’t expect me to come trim your trees anymore!”

He then proceeds to tell them exactly how they should live their lives…telling them that he’s not giving them a “guilt trip” but rather a “prick to their conscience” to make them see how bad he has it compared to them.

Christine is overrrr it. (Like…as over it as much as Kody is over his marriage to Meri.) She again clarifies that, if Kody asks her to pick between her kids and him, the kids will win every time. 

Janelle tells Kody that she doesn’t feel like spending Turkey Day as a shut-in alone, but that doesn’t mean she is going to go to the mall and lick doorknobs and spew COVID all over the place. Janelle says she does everything she can to prevent COVID, but she refuses to follow Kody’s paranoia-based rules. 

If you didn’t hate Kody already, his next line will make you really want to trash-bag him.

“I hope everybody enjoys their Thanksgiving,” he says with a condescending smile. 

“If any of you birds need me, I’ll be spraying down the turkey with Lysol!”

None of the Sister Wives say anything, almost as if they’re processing the fact that they actually married this horrible man-child. Janelle just gets up and leaves, but Christine tells Kody that she feels really good about the choice she’s making for Thanksgiving. Robyn looks like she is about to tear Christine’s face off. Meanwhile, Meri is sitting there looking like she’s hoping Kody will give her a pat on the back for being a good dog wife and following the rules.

When Kody starts criticizing Christine for living in “her own little world,” Janelle snaps back and comes back into the conversation, telling Kody that he needs to shut his trap and stop giving them all guilt trips. She reminds Kody that she just doesn’t want to spend Thanksgiving by herself.

“To be fair, you get used to it after awhile. Sometimes I talk to my leggings. At least they don’t give me guilt trips.”

Kody then talks down to Janelle like she’s a child, and this lady is just done

“Yeah, f**k off!” Janelle says as she turns and walks out again.

Can we just end the series right here? Because it ain’t gonna get any better than what we just saw, folks!

Sadly, this must continue, though. Kody asks his remaining wives if he’s being a bully.

Christine tries to explain it to her dimwitted “husband” that Janelle is stuck in the middle of Kody’s demands and her kids’ decisions. 

“She’s getting crap from both sides,” Christine says of Janelle, adding, “Your speech was very forceful…she probably has to deal with that kind of crap from her kids all day long.”

Christine isn’t done. She then tells us that it’s “irresponsible” of Kody to “ignore half of his family.” 

‘All these women and kids wanting to see their husband/father. GEEZ!”

Kody isn’t concerned about seeing or parenting his kids. His only concern is keeping them “alive.”

“If someone in this family dies, there’s going to be a bunch of other people I hate because of it,” Kody says, before launching in to a very random speech about how Christine hates him for Truely almost dying years and years ago (in 2014) because Kody was negligent when she had kidney failure.


Kody seems to think that him letting Truely get into kidney failure can be repaired by making his family be shut-ins so they don’t get COVID. Or something…

Back to the conversation, though, Kody reminds Christine that she’s “running to play with people who are breaking the rules.” (By “people” he means their adult children, by the way.) 

Kody says he’s “jealous” of the rule-breakers and Meri hops in to say that she wouldn’t mind being around some humans, too. Meri wants to know why, if she’s following all of Kody’s demands, can’t he spend time with her? 

“What part of ‘you’ve been shunned’ don’t you understand, Mer?”

That’s all for this episode of ’Sister Wives!’ 

To read The Ashley’s other ‘Sister Wives’ recaps, click here! 

(Photos: TLC) 



  2. Kody is gross
    But the passive agressive “happy thanksgiving” was so vile I’ve smacked him if I was there.

    What a nasty human being – inside out.

  3. Kody doesnt make any sense. Hes sayung what ever he needs to say to justify clining to Robyn 24/7. He wants the older kids to quit their jobs for covid safety but he also wants them to move out of Janelles house and take care of themselves.

  4. And this is what short courtships will do for people. None of these women would have entered into a plural marriage with Kody when they really knew what he was like as a husband and how his other marriages and the sister wive relationships were going.
    This guy is not suitable for plural marriage.
    He’s still pissed they didn’t stand on their chairs to cheer him on after he presented them the one big house plan.

  5. I think the biggest issue keeping these ladies in the “family” and “married” to Kody is that they fully and absolutely believe they need to be in polygamy in order to enter into the highest level of the kingdom of heaven. They need him for this to happen. Its the doctrine keeping them there.

  6. I am so glad you’re back to recapping this show. I cannot believe how much their family has just fallen apart. I hope Gabe sets Kody on fire next week.

  7. OMG someone please send Meri the best vibrator on the market so she can stop begging for crumbs and realize how bad her sex life really was with Sir Lovely Locks.

    Ashley, you SLAYED it on this one, so nice I read it twice!

  8. I think you meant to write, “The four women that Kody somehow ‘convinced’ to marry him”… but I like ‘convicted’ much better bc being married to him would truly be like serving a life sentence. He is the absolute worst.

  9. I’m not about violence, but someone needs to slap Meri across the face and ask her what the hell she’s doing.

    1. I don’t even watch this trash heap, I just read the recaps, but I watched it last night just to see the one wife (Janelle?) tell him to f**k off.

  10. “I have a 4 year old that needs a dad until she’s 21”🙄

    As far as I am aware you don’t stop being a parent when your child is any age! Watching this episode, I was struck by the fact that Kody referred to both Jenelle and Christine’s children (with Kody) as YOUR children. Not ours, yours. He wanted to kick out two kids because they are adults, and Kody didn’t get any handouts from his parents.

    I also at this point have a hard time feeling sorry for Meri. She has the resources to get out. She cries about being alone, Kody not coming to see her, her sister wives not calling her, etc. Kody has made it very clear that he wants nothing to do with her. I feel like the entire family treats her like she is a leper. It is time to leave and not subject yourself to continued abuse. Christine now seems free and happy. Hopefully Meri will follow soon but I highly doubt it.

  11. Kody cares so much about control and image, imagine if you hate him from what they show in the show compared to how he must be behind closed doors.

    We know what happened from here with Christine, Janelle’s kids got their own place… it’s only a matter of time. I feel horrible for Meri, she’s legally divorced and needs to move on. Hell, can’t find another Mormon man that maybe *only* wants to be married to you? There is an ass for every toilet seat, and Kody is in use.

    1. I absolutely love your last comment: “there is an ass for every toilet seat.”

      Kody is the biggest jackass on TV lately. He’s hateful and mean. He and Robyn deserve each other.

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