Vanderpump Rules has found itself at a crosshairs. Last night I witnessed Jax Taylor and Katie Maloney behave like mature-ish adults as they attempted to set some reasonable boundaries with Kristen Doute and Brian Carter about how their toxic codependency is affecting everyone else’s lives.
I mean I know Jax was just cosplaying the dad from Family Ties because he’s about to be a married
adulterer adulter soon, but this show is not supposed to be about capable adults acting accordingly. Vanderpump Rules is supposed to be about drunken, unhinged twenty-somethings who screw, scheme, and cry their way through terrible choices and still emerge with flawless skin.
On that vein, absolutely nobody cares about Jax’s wedding to Brittany Cartwright. Brittany sincerely believes everyone is as invested in her bridal registry and knot.com page as she is. Also this wedding that she’s planning has absolutely nothing to do with Jax, who might as well be a rent-a-fiance from some Hallmark Movie about proving to your judgmental small town relatives that you’re not an unmarriageable career woman, repugnant to blandly attractive men in tight sweaters. This wedding is about Brittany living out her fantasy, and her friends would rather let her merry hijack them than Kristen’s misery. I don’t blame them!
As the wedding countdown reaches one month Brittany has Stassi Schroeder and Lala Kent over to support her through Boo-Drawer photos. That’s “boudoir” for all you people speaking anglicized French. Um, exactly what do you need style assistance for if you’re naked? I should probably ask Playboy.
Anyway, Brittany’s photos include splashing around in a bathtub and the only thing I’m struck with is “Of course she has a ‘tramp stamp…'” More exciting: Lala reveals that she’s reached out to James Kennedy and is meeting him at a music studio.
Now that she’s sober and working the steps Lala wants to give James another chance — even though he’s been “absolutely horrible to people.” Well that is all fine and good, but Lala herself (and everyone else on this show, especially Jax, Katie, and Kristen) have been equally horrible to people. Lala has no business behaving as if she’s Lauren, patron saint of drunken outbursts. Those in glass houses (glass houses other than Villa Rosa) shall not cast rhinestones, Lala! Didn’t Lala have an outburst on twitter that cost Mandall $1 million dollars? #Fofty.
James takes Lala’s lecture about how he needs to clean up his act with a grain of salt, because he needs to make amends with people to stay on this show. Also he’s drinking less and therefore is more reasonable. [side-eye].
And now over to SUR where Scheana Marie is training Dayna Kathan and another newbie Charli Burnett. Scheana just adores Charli, but that’s because she’s not sleeping with Max Boyens. At least probably not yet! Meanwhile Scheana assigns Dayna manual labor – polishing the candle shelf at SUR.
Dayna is smart enough to know exactly what’s going on and she’s also smart enough to realize that her reality TV career is directly connected how much drama she can cause with the OGs, so she calls Scheana out on trying to create a hostile work environment over Max. Scheana completely denies this as she smiles sweetly, then tells Dayna they just don’t really ‘connect’ and she likes Charli much better. To really dig in the butter knife (or wine key) Dayna announces she has to leave because Max is picking her up for a date.
Scheana, meanwhile, gets stuck wearing a giant sweatshirt over her SUR uniform to have dinner with Ariana Madix and Danica Dow. Danica has been around before and she seems absolutely perfect for this show. She’s currently suspended from SUR after assaulting her boyfriend in the restaurant when he suggested they have a three-way. This guy should probably be dating Scheana who is desperate enough for anything.
Through Danica we learn that Max is thirstier than Stassi after a 24-alcohol detox. So thirsty that he slept with two of Danica’s friends and lied that he was a part owner of Tom Tom.
Over their dinner Max informs Dayna that Scheana is shallow and boring, and that after they were together a month she announced she was going off birth control to freeze her eggs. Also Scheana gave him the AppleWatch as a Thanksgiving present because she was thankful for him being in her life. Did that AppleWatch come with the Ovulation Calendar app already downloaded?
So how is Dayna not shallow? Dayna has a real job in healthcare sales and is in LA to pursue a standup comedy career. After losing her mom at a young age Dayna channeled her sadness into making people laugh and she’s hoping that working at SUR will net her enough money that she can quit her day job to focus more fully on comedy. Based on the stand-up routine we saw Dayna perform, she should not quit either of her day jobs for a quite a while. But still, who is this person and shouldn’t she be more wary about Bravo ruining her life?
Look Scheana is definitely shallow. She’s a starfish, blobbing around near the surface waving at shiny things and regenerating if anyone rips off a piece of heart. Maybe Dayna is a penguin, deep-diving into the icy deep for the good fish? One thing is for certain though, Max is a melting icecap, so abandon now!
Max insists he never told anyone he’s part-owner of Tom Tom in order to get laid (we don’t believe him). And he’s getting laid – or trying to – so much so that he added a “Max’s Currently Dating” button to the TomTom cash register to comp drinks of his potential hook-ups. Aka he’s laundering money through panties. Tom 1 and Tom 2 better pay less attention to dry ice and fancy cocktail glasses, and more attention to examining the ROI of Max’s sex life.
Scheana’s sex life (or hopeful sex life) is also a liability. She’s essentially stalking Brett Caprioni after they made out, briefly, behind the dumpster after sampling too many house drinks. The situation is so intense Brett is ready to make a sexual harassment claim to Lisa Vanderpump, who he’s also ‘personal training’. Does Ken know about this arrangement?! (I kid)
Brett decides he has to tell Scheana they are ‘just friends’ or else she’ll be buying him one of her harvested eggs as an easter gift. He pulls her into the fridge room, the second most gruesome place at SUR where many a hearts and friendships have been shattered, for a little talk about relationships. Brett has watched enough Bachelor to have perfected the new-age self-help breakup speech about finding oneself and needing to walk their own path to crystal energy sources to find the inner chi of flat irons. (That’s the same journey Peter Madrigal is currently on). Scheana does not absorb any of this and decides Brett likes her enough to be thoughtful of her feelings.
Ariana quit SUR because she was writing a cocktail book and buying a house. People quit jobs because buying a home is so stressful? Now the book is done and Ariana is bored sitting at home, not decorating, and decides to ask Lisa if she can start bartending one day a week for something to do. The only problem is that last year Ariana got mad about the way Lisa was treating the Toms and called her out.
Lisa is queen of all these people say and do and rules this SURvile empire with a platinum fist, so Ariana must grovel at her feet about how she just loves Tom so much that she threw herself on the metaphorical swizzle stick to protect him. Love of a good man is Lisa’s Achilles heel, also women who need her advice and support. There is always a rose-colored bandaid in her Birkin! As soon as Ariana admitted that she’s been suffering from depression and feels at a loss with what to do with her life, Lisa welcomes her back with open arms. So that’s nice.
As mentioned above Carter is causing problems. Soon everyone will be heading to Miami for Brittany and Jax’s joint Bachelor/Bachelorette party weekend and no one wants Carter there. Except for Kristen. Maybe. If he’s Kristen’s boyfriend they will put up with him as a +1, but if Kristen and Carter are truly broken up no one sees any reason to include Carter, someone they do not like or respect, in their friend circle. When Jax decides you aren’t worthy of respect, things are dire!
Stassi is so fed up with Kristen’s dishonesty and emotional breakdowns that she literally cannot deal and is keeping her distance. That leaves Katie to try and discern what the hell is going on. In a thrift store where they’re all trying on “tacky wedding gowns” to wear to the bachelorette party (Scheana suggested she just wear her own crop-top wedding dress) Kristen again promises things are done with Carter.
Therefore Jax decides that the time has come for him to have a “man to man” talk with Carter about when he’s moving out and why he can’t come to Miami. Where are the mans in this talk? Jax shows up at Kristen’s house where she’s binge-drinking while packing and sobbing as Katie looks on, horrified. I’ve never seen Katie calm. Is this CBD Katie as opposed to Tequila Katie?
Kristen refuses to give a straight answer about what’s happening with Carter. For instance at that very moment he is at her new house, bringing stuff over, and communicating with the contractor about the doors for the guest house. Yet Kristen is still claiming they’re broken up! THE LIES. THE LIES.
Kristen is in full-scale emotional wreck Kritter-Mode: greasy hair, yesterday’s mascara streaming down her face, hyperventilating, swilling what looks like whiskey out of a juice glass… Things are so bad even Jax realizes he has to attempt to be compassionate so he starts explaining that Carter is using Kristen for free cows. As if she’s human dowry. He means Carter sees no reason to buy the cow when he gets the milk – err booze and BMWs for free.
When Carter gets back Jax pulls him into the bedroom for that manly chat about how a boy should treat a woman. Basically Jax tells Carter if he had any self-resect he’d dump Kristen because it’s clear that he’s taking advantage of her vulnerable emotional state and manipulating it to his own advantage. OK, what is happening here is that it sounds like Kristen is in an emotionally abusive relationship! Now some of that is probably a problem of her own making because she is incapable of establishing boundaries and lacks any and all reasoning skills. Kristen’s stunted adolescence seems even worse than Jax’s. Remember how she clung onto Tom 1 while sleeping with both Jax and James, but in this scenario Kristen is not the aggressor, Carter is.
Jax decides the solution is for Carter to move out while they’re in Miami and get a break from Kristen. He also says they shouldn’t speak for a month (but who will pay Carter’s bills?). It’s sage advice, and it solved the problem of Carter crashing a trip he’s not invited to but seems to think he should be, but it’s not a solution.
So, is this guy just hoping to hijack a place on Vanderpump Rules and making that his job, or what is going on? Does Carter really consider this group his friends? And when is someone going to suggest to Kristen that she needs major therapy?
TELL US – ARE KRISTEN’S FRIENDS RIGHT TO SET GROUND RULES? IS MAX USING DAYNA?
[Photo Credits: Bravo]