What Can We Learn From This Season Of Vanderpump Rules?

By Anne T. Donahue

And what a long, strange, trip it has been. When I wrote the first Vanderpump piece this season, I truly thought I would never revisit it. By “it,” of course, I mean the show.

Nothing about Vanderpump Rules this season was supposed to be good. Sure, we knew that James and Raquel had broken up, and there were rumours of a Schwartz/Raquel hook-up, but last season was as boring as the one before it was abysmal. These weird adults weren’t supposed to make mainstream news. I wasn’t supposed to spend actual weeks scrolling through any and every gossip site, thirsting for a kernel of intel about a reality TV couple I thought was already doomed. (If you thought Ariana and Sandoval were going to end up happily ever after, you did not have Ariana’s best interest at heart.) This year, Vanderpump Rules changed my life, and I’m not sure how I feel about that.

But reader, I certainly did learn some things. So in conclusion of the most compelling season of television ever in the history of entertainment, here’s everything that cursed (and blessed) show taught me over the last three-to-four months.

1. Trust no one
And I mean no one. Don’t trust your partner. Don’t trust your friends. Don’t trust the producers of a reality TV show because odds are they had an inkling that Raquel and Sandoval were hooking up, but alas, they had to tow the company line. And above all, do not trust Lisa Vanderpump because she will side with Tom Sandoval, wearer of white nail polish and light-up lightening bolt jacket lapels.

2. But especially don’t trust a 40-year-old cover band star who is Tom Sandoval
This grown man tours with a cover band, and that’s fine, but at some point in his narrative he came to believe that singing the songs of other, more famous people makes him a cool famous person. Reader, no. The man is upsetting. He is a character, which I mean in the most pejorative sense of the world. He is a narcissist. He hooked up with somebody when his girlfriend was sleeping in the next room. He is bad at talking, and worse at explaining. He is the guy you worked with at Future Shop in 2002, and instead of growing up, he still brags about how drunk he got at the Pizza Hut lunch buffet.

3. Beware of anybody with a galaxy light
I’m not saying that, like Raquel, having a galaxy light is indicative of being the shadiest person and worst friend alive. But I am absolutely saying that if you need mood lighting to sleep, please be an adult and fall asleep in front of the Food Network like some people. Nothing lulls a person to sleep like the soft, comforting voice of Guy Fieri, believe me.

And if you have a galaxy light, please do not refer to it as (insert Sandoval voice here) mood lighting.

4. When in doubt, send it to Darrell
In the days following the Scandoval explosion, Lala Kent took to Instagram to announce that Raquel was an idiot for sending a cease and desist to her personally. I did not know this was a faux pas, but when I asked my mom (who used to work at a law office) if it was bad form to circumvent another lawyer and send a file to somebody without legal consultation, she said “Uh, YEAH.” (So take that.)

Anyway, Lala’s response to this atrocity was to “tell your Mickey Mouse lawyer” not to send it to her. Instead, send it to Darrell. I live, loved, laughed at this, and while I will not buy the merchandise being sold by Lala that says “Send it to Darrell,” know that I wish I could.

5. Do not stop being concerned about James Kennedy
Yes, I know he’s the number one guy in the group. Yes, I know he dodged a bullet by not marrying Raquel in the wake of last season. But pals, I still worry about James. I worry about the fact that he cried when talking about Tom at the reunion last week. I worry that he’s been so betrayed by both Sandoval and Raquel that he will never open his heart back up again. I worry that he’s indulging in alcoholic beverages despite that clearly not being the best idea. I worry about him and his new girlfriend Ally because she seems lovely and he seems like he could absolutely be lovely after a long time being single and also some really good therapy.

But above all, I worry that if we meet, he will fall in love with me. And like the dream I had the other night, I will have to break his heart by explaining that it will never work because I just don’t like going out that much.

6. We can’t quit this show
Maybe this is the most important lesson of all. Maybe, even though we’re all aging and the cast is aging, and nobody actually works at Lisa Vanderpump’s restaurants anymore, we will always return to where the heart is; where we feel good and alive and where we’re reminded that no matter where our own lives take us, nothing will ever be as bad as Tom Sandoval’s band or whining about absolute nonsense. We need this show in the same way its stars need us. We need to give them attention, and they need to take it. And when we’re looking at them, nobody will be looking at us. Nobody will notice that under the cloak of darkness, we have driven far, far out into the country and left behind an unopened box of galaxy lights.

Need a little more Anne? Read more from Anne T. Donahue right here!

Tags: Anne T. Donahue, top story, topstory, Vanderpump Rules

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