As if by magic, tonight’s Vanderpump Rules transports us back into the throes of Jax’s mid-life crisis. He thrashes around Sur like a wounded manatee, heaving and panting as he shoots the bird at all and sundry. His smokey eye, updo, Gstaad moment teeters close to breaking the fourth wall. Accusing his castmates of “flipping the script,” Jax searches someone willing to tell the truth. Brittany cringes in the corner. Her Mamaw raised her better than to act a fool in public. Jax is escorted out of the restaurant in stages. “Let’s talk about this at the hostess stand.” “I think we need some air. Lets go outside.” And finally, “You must be all yelled out by now. Let’s take off your mic and send you home.” Once again, Brittany is left to bat clean-up. She tries to smooth things over with Lisa but LVP is done playing. She asks Brittany if Jax is truly worth fighting for. Brit knows he is. She breaks down in her confessional, talking about how much she loves him. Brittany is sad, sad, sad.
Stassi finds the perfect chant for her helium heightened voice: “Rob. Rob, Rob, Rob.” She just earned her Season 6 paycheck with 5 seconds of work.
James is mixing his single with Lala when she conveniently drops by the studio. She calls attention to how good her vocals sound. It’s nice to see a confident woman, doing what she loves. But, here’s the thing: we’ve heard this song before. Back when Lala sang it. It didn’t work for Milli Vanilli. It didn’t work in Singin’ In The Rain. Just saying. We might not realize it but Lala’s 5 song showcase is the new Scheana’s wedding. She’s a bridezilla. On crack. On steroids. She’s not Erika Jayne. Her benefactor is going to trade her in for a younger model in a few years. She needs to make hay while the making is good. And no one better fuck it up. Especially James Kennedy.
Tom and Tom tour TomTom. Schwartz looks like Gomer Pyle in his hard hat. Sandoval doesn’t care. He gets down on one knee and proposes. The business wives exchange TT cufflinks. It’s the most romantic storyline on the show.
After the Brittany debacle, LVP isn’t taking any more chances. She recruits tried and true horse-girl Ariana for an equine rendez-vous. This episode is probably difficult for Ariana to relive. She sucks up to Lisa more pathically, more unctuously than anyone in Bravo history. By the time she whines that her cocktail book is on hold because Sandoval is too busy with TomTom (can you spot the 23 reasons that sentence makes me laugh?), she’s lost her cool girl status. At least she plants the idea that firing Jax would make boffo television. She does that for us.
Katie’s redemption arc includes rebranding her Pucker and Pout blog into a makeup brand. And every lipstick deserves a Stassi-thrown coming out event. Kristen tears into the party, speed racing on crutches. Is this a sign that Crazy Kristen followed them home from Mexico? We can only hope. The excuses for her injury seem forced. She’s clumsy. She stubbed her toe on the wall. She’s the Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm-Flailing Tubeman. They say rehab can fix all of those problems (allegedly).
After a season spent hiding behind Kristen’s skirt tails, Carter drinks some liquid courage and shoves his head into the reality TV guillotine. He totally believes Kristen didn’t cheat on him, but he’s gonna ask around (just in case). Sandoval is in his glory. Sleeping with Jax. Sleeping with James. Miami Girl. Kristen has made his life miserable. Turnabout is fair play. He sells Jax’s lie like it’s the only option. Carter lurches across the room to catch Kristen in the act of swapping dog stories with what is probably a gay busser. “Why’re you talking to dudes?” he slurs with faltering bravado. Oh, Carter. You should have studied a little harder before you got in the pool with the big boys. Kristen bemoans her wicked fate; even her boyfriend believes the vile rumor. She hobbles away from the reverie, a broken shell of a woman. And that, Carter, is how you do it.
By the end of the party, Stassi is well into the cups. She tells Brittany, point blank, that everyone in that room thinks Jax is the worst. But Kentucky has made her decision. She will get her Jax Taylor wedding (or baby, either works) come hell or high water. Stassi understands loving the wrong man. Patrick is a sanctimonious bully who treats her like his inferior. “I don’t think I could go to your wedding,” Stassi muses. But could she plan it?
Jax is in a bad mood. Kelsey is on safari and the metaphysical hand jobs went with her. He follows production cues to break up with Brittany. He does the “It’s not you, it’s me.” The “I’m not good enough for you.” The “I lost my Brittany’s spark.” Just because it’s in the script doesn’t make it less hurtful. Brittany starts climbing the grief ladder. Denial is easy for her. It’s how she lives her life. Jax seems surprised when she moves on to anger. He truly doesn’t get why Brittany is upset. With him, of all people. He refuses to leave so Brittany calls an Uber. Jax watches her go with the smug look of man happy with his benevolent act.
Next week: Ariana wants Sandoval to choose her over Jax. Well, she wants him to want to. Jax sees a therapist (female) to deal with his fake breakup with Brittany. Brittany slides into the barback’s DMs. And Lala’s showcase includes a hype man, a stage name and a bodysuit.