Vanderpump Rules Recap: Photo Shoot Me Now


Vanderpump Rules Recap: Photo Shoot Me Now

Finally, we hear the words I have been waiting for all year, “Next week on the season finale of Vanderstupid Drools.” I am so ready for this season to be over like I have never been ready for anything in my entire life. It’s just a slog going through the same old motions. James is popping off for no good reason, Brock and Scheana are making bad life choices, Ariana continues to be a queen, Charli is a great song played in the wrong club, and Lisa Vanderpump delivers nothing but fakery.

Which brings me to Katie and Ariana’s meeting with Randall (who I always want to call Russell because you can’t convince me those names are different). Is it just me, or did the whole thing seem staged and/or manufactured? Katie shows up, calls Ariana to find out she’s “running late because Tom had a notary come at the same time.” Randall arrives and asks Lisa for her business advice which she doesn’t give, and tells the audience the maxim that if it goes well, she won’t get credit, but if it goes badly, she will get the blame. Then Russdall sits down and says, “I could be doing so many other things at my office, so I’m going to set an alarm for 30 minutes. Alexa, set an alarm for 30 minutes. Also, Alexa, is there something about her? No. There is not.” Then Ariana arrives just like five minutes late, and there is no harm except everyone can tell them how unprofessional they’re being.

It was just all so convenient. I don’t know why Katie and Ariana would agree to look bad on television, but, yes, shouldn’t Ariana have told Tom to move his notary appointment or rebook her meeting with Dallran? The whole thing seemed both preordained and inconsequential. Russran then tells the ladies that he will tell them if they get the money this weekend, i.e. at the big season finale that they’re all attending, which will wrap this storyline up in a bow neater than Sandoval’s pubic grooming.

Now we can move on to how Brock and Scheana are vying for the starring roles in the Dumb and Dumberer remake, like Sean Young showing up on Joan Rivers’s show dressed as Cat Woman. First, we see Brock’s big photoshoot for his workout app Homebody and, well, now that I know a little bit more, it’s not a horrible idea. He describes it as OnlyFans, but for fitness people, so Larsa Pippen thinks it’s for selling pictures of her feet while she is on a Pilates reformer. But what I think he means is fitness pros can upload workouts, diet plans, or thirst traps that make us feel bad about the 14 sleeves of Rolos we’ve eaten since Thanksgiving, and then their clients can pay for access. This could be smart since many fitness pros have large Instagram followings but can use this platform rather than building their own website or app. I don’t take back all the awful things I said about this, but about maybe half.

What is stupid is this $20,000 photoshoot he had with the cast of Vanderpump Rules. Other than promotion for his brand, what is this good for? Who wants to see these images of reality stars? Shouldn’t he have invited the bodybuilders and spin instructors he wants to attract to his platform to get a value add for signing up (and giving him a percentage of what they rake in on the platform)? What good is having pictures of Ariana sitting on Sandoval’s back while he does pushups going to do to sell this thing and make money? And why spend so much on falling balloons when they don’t even work?

That is what makes no sense to me about Brock. He’s like a Lego construction kit with all the wrong instructions. All the blocks are there, you just can’t get them into the right configuration. Like when he finally decides to propose to Scheana, he cheaps out and just has some balloons and a vomit pool of rose petals on their balcony so that he can pop the question over the blaring of horns and the din of construction noise across the street. Poor Erika, Scheana’s mom, who clearly hates Brock and had to help him set up this sad display as she gazes through the window like Kim Richards watching her daughter go off to prom. This is not to mention that they got engaged after signing a prenup. Scheana also says she’s surprised. Girl, that is like signing a lease for a new Acura and then being shocked when there’s a car with a red bow on top in your driveway. It’s also amazing that Scheana comments on how large her engagement ring is. She doesn’t care that it’s a fake stone, just that it’s big. She’s like a three-year-old who would rather have 50 pennies than a dollar because it just looks like more.

We also learn more about what is going on with their wedding when they talk about the plan to have the ceremony at the engagement party for James and Racquel, a woman with a relative named Grandma Buttons who is somehow not a hairless cat. We discover that the two of them already have a marriage license (even before the engagement?), so they don’t care when or how they get married, so then why must they do it at the engagement party. Everyone knows this is a worse idea than drying your hair while still in the bathtub, but they all plow ahead with it anyway, hoping that somehow, someway, it will eventually make sense.

In Brock’s defense, Ariana said on Twitter that there were multiple events that he wanted to do it at, but they kept getting canceled because of COVID. But why not make that part of the narrative? We know they’re on a show, we know they had to lose some shooting days and James had to isolate; show us why he had to make this choice rather than just making Brock look incredibly stupid, which he usually doesn’t need any help with. It’s like if they have to explain this for Brock they have to explain all the other fakery that we’ve been suffering through all season.

The rest of the episode was just everyone kicking around the Sunstone Winery in Santa Ynez (with a Y!) which deserves every ounce of promo that the show is giving it. We have seen the Real Housewives and their reality kin visit a lot of hotels, wineries, event spaces, Hong Kong junks, Franciscan monasteries, international space stations, and dry bars in our day, but there is never one I actually wanted to go to like Sunstone. The rooms look amazing. The grounds look immaculate. Everything about it screams, “A secondary character on Game of Thrones was murdered here.” I will be there lounging in the sun for all of 2022 if anyone would like to stop by and talk about Bravo with me or bring me a new Speedo. Thanks.

Toms Schwartz and Sandoval particularly loved wandering around the vineyard at night. They both snuck out of their rooms and wandered separately, hoping that the careening shadow from the other would alert them to their presence. Finally, through the moonlight and the silence, they found each other, like two molecules forming an ionic bond. Similarly, they latched together at the mouth, their big arms enveloping each other, their hands groping, their members rising. Everything was slow and passionate but also heated, as if this was the last night on Earth, as if this was the only opportunity they’d ever have to be together. Without saying a word, they shucked off layer upon layer of clothing, standing with only the vines for protection from the light breeze that was tickling their flesh. As they continued their embrace, their fronts were overheated as their backsides cooled, and they huddled even closer, their groins getting slippery with sweat, with lubrication, with the desire for one to be in the other, but even that wouldn’t be enough. They needed to both be in each other at the same time, a trick that biology would not allow, and so they continued to consume each other, their feet planted firmly in the soil, as the moon rose over their heads like they were the only beings on Earth allowed to love.