Back in the day, Arsenio Hall had a talk show with a segment called, “Things That Make You Go Hmmmm.” Well over on my dilapidated couch last night, I was going hmmmm and saying WTF? all through Vanderpump Rules. It’s been obvious from the get go that Bravo wanted a show like The Hills. And what they got was, a show like The Hills. But, the problem is after The Hills ended most of the cast came clean that the entire show was scripted nonsense.
As long as there have been fake reality shows there have always been two groups of viewers. First, are “the normals,” people with lives who go to work and come home at night and just want to watch something mindless on TV. Any show about a bunch of fucked up people fits the bill. After a long day at the office, they want someone to point at to say, well, today sucked, but at least I am not Heidi Montag. Then there are those of us with no lives who have plenty of time to discover that in real life Lauren Conrad moved out of that house months before Heidi’s wedding! This show is total bullshit. Our joy in these shows is proving that we are not as dumb as we look, dammit! Over at the network, the excecs welcome both groups with equal Glee. For now. As social media expands, the number of “normals” is rapidly dwindling and fact finders don’t have to look far to find the truth. So how much longer will these sorts of shows last?
Let’s take a look at Vanderpump Rules Finale. First we have Tom Sandoval trying to read a text aloud with the fluency of a second grader with special needs. Of all the characters on this show, he is most in need of acting lessons. And that is saying a lot. In his “Why are you late ?” scene with his stammering and dropped shoulder routine is laughable. Making Tom the lead in this storyline was laughable. But wet tried to overlook that.
Lisa Vanderpump has gotten weirder by the episode on Vanderpump Rules this season. She went from being a busy successful business owner who was above all the juvenile drama straight to pot stirrer within the first three episodes. On the finale, she gossips to Guillermo Zapata, so she can have screen time, she orders Stassi to apologize to Kristen for something that occurred during their personal time, She berates a tearful Kristen and tries to bully her into quitting, and most all of this occurs while attending an engagement party that it is inappropriate for her to attend in the first place.
If you are going to film a scripted soap opera, you need to put some effort into blocking and special effects. For example, when Tom attacks Jax and Jax gets nary a defensive punch in, if you want to have Jax’s face bloodied, you go for a nose punch. Tom tries to explain the ketchup on Jax’s forehead on WWHL by saying that he punched Jax in the forehead rather than the nose or the mouth because he was taking it easy on him. Even dumb old Tom figured out that the ketchup was in the wrong place after seeing the episode. Sadly for Tom, who has probably never thrown a real punch in his life, he doesn’t know that if you punch someone in the forehead, most likely you are going to break your hand. And never will the forehead, spontaneously be covered in blood (or cocktail sauce) when no cut was made. Okay looking at a paused shot of Jax’s face (the things I do for you) it looks like Tom might have cut his head with a ring or something. Head wounds do bleed a lot. Maybe Jax’s blood does look like cocktail sauce. Sigh.
Lisa’s stage direction, script and acting were particularly awful last night. Generally, she makes a civilized appearance, buys a round of drinks and leaves. Last night she flew around on her broom spouting lines that would never naturally come from her mouth. Then, she gave a toast and said, “Okay, I’m going home. I suggest you all do to. come on.” This is the cue for the scripted fight scene. NOBODY was up to this scene. Lisa stands up and seems afraid to turn her back on what she knows is going to happen. She cringes as she walks away.
I just slow motioned Tom punching Jax. And he did hit him on the top of the head, coming down toward the forehead. I guess that Jax got some input on the blocking, like stay away from his nose and his face. The acting is horrible. Scheana’s scene was particularly bad. Not to be outdone, Jax gives a talking head with the music swelling about there be no coming back from this. And Stassi’s final fake cry of the season where she lists all the men who have wronged her, announces she is a good person, and bemoans…”when are good people gonna come out on top?”
I can answer that for you Stassi. When he writers make it happen. After that dramatic scene, someone off camera shouts, AND THAT’S A WRAP! And Lisa returns to the group and says, “Let’s have a drink
to celebrate the end of another great season!”