The only thing worse than Vanderpump Rules

With the exception of McDonald’s hamburgers and possibly the year 2020, nothing lasts forever. I know that. You know that. The former couples from 90 Day Fiance know that. But there’s one group of people that haven’t received the memo, and that would be BravoTV (and possibly the Mayans).

A couple of years ago, I landed my first paying freelance writing gig – it was for the website and my gig was writing comedic recaps of BravoTV reality shows, with my main show being Vanderpump Rules. I loved that show until, I spent a year writing about it.        

When Vanderpump Rules debuted, it was a breath of fresh reality TV air. It wasn’t a talent show and nobody had to eat bugs or feces for money. It wasn’t a show about rich people who had everything and fought about nothing. None of that. Just a bunch of 20-somethings (and Jax) trying to make it in Hollywood while working as servers and bartenders in one of the busiest, most trendy restaurants in town. Who couldn’t relate? And the cast brought the drama from the beginning with the first season kicking off with Scheana Shay apologizing to Brandy Glanville for sleeping with her husband for two years and ending with Jax admitting to Stassi that he cheated on her in Vegas. OK, so the drama was just people being salacious but that was enough for me. 

That was in 2013 and while the show returned season after season, the cast was kept in some reality TV timewarp where the only thing that changed was their faces. Season 8 Scheana looks so different from season 1 Scheana that if it weren’t for her obsession with boys and herself you’d be forgiven for believing she’d been replaced. Other than the introduction of new people and face transplants, every season was the same thing: vacations that God knows my income from my waitress days couldn’t have paid for, fights about them sleeping with each other, Jax lying and ruining lives, Scheana and her boy problems and auto-tuned songs, Kristen crying, Stassi and Katie getting wasted and losing their minds. Every so often one of them would deal with an actual real-life problem but those situations don’t bring in ratings so, at best, their airtime was kept at a minimum. But that didn’t matter because we, as the kids say, were here for it. 

Then, in season five, it appeared to take a turn. They started doing adult-like things: getting married, dabbling in new business ventures, they quit sleeping with each other unless their name was Kristen. And you know what – who wants to see that? Not very many of their fans, apparently. So, BravoTV did what any network does when a top-rated show is starting to flounder: they added MORE people. And not just one or two like they’d done in the past. They added FIVE. Five new stories to tell. This is where it all went to hell because honestly, nobody cared. The show was still the same same-y show it had been except there were new people filling in where the OGs semi-left off. Naturally, this didn’t sit well with a few of the old school castmates so how did they react? They turned it up to 11 to get that airtime which was an even bigger turn off than the notches on Max’s bedpost. This past season was a huge waste of time, partly because the only thing new was the new people and they were pretty boring, but also because of terrible editing. By the way, ‘terrible’ is me putting it nicely. Whatever below ‘shameful’ is, that’s what the editing was this season. 

And then…

Then they started getting in real-world trouble and there’s no editor that can fix it. I can’t speak for everyone but when it comes to reality TV, I like to believe that on some level, these people are just showing off for the camera (with the exception of Jax who I’m pretty sure is 100% horrible 100% of the time). However, after Stassi, Kristen, Brett, and Max were fired from the show last week for racial remarks and actions, it’s pretty clear that the show has created some entitled assholes – that’s a hard vision and realization to come back from. Not only did they break the fourth wall, they pretty much tore every wall down. The “reality” that we enjoyed watching is too real now, it’s no longer entertaining. They ruined the magic trick; they’re just shitty all the time.

So now what? Every article I’ve read has mentioned a season 9, one article going as far as to say the new cast was going to “bring it”. Bring what, exactly, I’m not sure because there’s really nowhere else for this show to go. I would argue that the show should make like a 90s boy band and split. It would be great if the show were like the band Menudo where they could just keep replacing members for decades and continue to attract a new fan base. Unfortunately, this season they’ve proven to be more like 98 Degrees where the head of the group (in this case now Tom and Tom) will go on to make a bunch of money thanks to their significant other (Lisa Vanderpump) and will probably branch off and find solo success, possibly in the form of a spin-off. The rest will do podcasts and knit, I guess. 

The point is, regardless of (but not discounting) the situation that they’re currently in, the show has been over for some time. The majority of them own million-dollar houses in Beverly Hills for Christ’s sake, a far stretch from when they were in apartments that only allowed for one appliance to be plugged in at a time. And the new people are a little too been-there-done-that. We’ve seen it all, including a Scheana clone that manifested towards the end of season 8. I cannot take two Scheana’s. No. FUCKING. Way. 2020 has been bad enough, let’s not carry it over into 2021 – especially not with two Scheana’s but more importantly, not with one single Jax. The only thing worse than the show is him. 

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I get paid a whole $10 for this.

It’s happened. I’m whoring out my writing for exposure. I’m a total sell out.

It’s not too bad.

After spending 2 1/2 years writing show recaps for free, I was offered a contract with Taste of Reality to basically make fun of reality shows they assigned me for $10 an article. It started with Vanderpump Rules (I love that show, I can’t help it) then moved over to Southern Charm New Orleans (a show so boring I learned to sleep with my eyes open). While we wait for Vanderpump Rules to return I’ve been assigned Southern Charm Savannah, which, surprisingly, isn’t half bad. I can’t post the actual content on my site but can share the link (impressions, am I right?). I’ve got new content coming soon but in the meantime, if you’re a Southern Charm fan, I hope you enjoy my take on the season premiere.

Vanderpump Rules: Sex, Lies, and Audiotape

Who sucks the most this week on #pumprules

Regardless of where you attended high school, chances are there was an individual whose mere presence sparked riots in your brain. Your mind boycotted their existence, and then they would speak, and their voice caused pure, physical pain. Needles stabbing your eardrums. The poor rioters in your head held their ears with their hands, screaming in agony. We’ve all gone to school with that person. In my grade that person’s name was Julie. One grade higher was a girl whose name rhymes with Mandy and judged you based on your clothes and accessories. If you appeared poor or below her parents income level she deemed you a peasant. I, haha listen to me talking about myself like Mandy. Not just I, EVERYONE hated her. That was 16 years ago. Two weeks ago she appeared on a game show with her wealthy husband and won over $150,000. I did not think it was possible to hate a person more, until this week’s episode of Vanderpump Rules.

Who should we hate first? Let’s start with Schwartz. OK, does every season require a new person to be the villain? Does the show end its run when everyone has had their turn? What the hell happened to Schwartz? After the unnecessary showdown at Guillermo’s birthday party, Schwartz, Sandoval and Jax reconvene at Schwartz’s place. After some guy talk Katie, Stassi and Ariana arrive followed by Katie promptly kicking Jax out. Jax rides away on his motorized cooler and Katie tries to have a conversation with a drunk Schwartz. And the problem with that is?… Katie pours her heart out and asks that he not get blackout drunk so that he won’t continue to make these mistakes, and Schwartz replies by pretty much saying “don’t tell me what to do.” He’s gone from lovable to being one more blackout away from his next reality show appearance: Intervention.

Let’s switch gears and talk about who everyone USED to hate: Lala. Lala has returned to her hostess position at SUR and what better way to kick off her first day back than with Katie confronting her about the Schwartz gossip. Finger-gun toting Lala could’ve been a dildo about the whole thing but instead, she explains that the reason she said something in the first place was because of the “married man” comment Katie made to Scheana. Katie apologizes and Lala gives her the rest of the details. From one Schwartz talk to another, Lisa informs Katie that she is now worried about partnering with Schwartz out of fear that he may pull the same “I got blackout drunk and don’t remember” stunt with the new business. Wouldn’t you?

Later that day (I guess, the script for this realty show doesn’t always flow well) Schwartz, Tom and Jax enjoy an afternoon of painting and absinthe while Katie, Kristen and Brittany enjoy an afternoon of drinks and gossip. Because this season is all about the domino effect Katie and Kristen tell Brittany about Scheana’s boyfriend, Rob, cheating on her. So there’s that.

Anyway, it’s time to get back to who to hate, and the next person is Scheana. I can’t tell where her delusional mentality comes from: whether it’s from all the botox or if she’s just stared at herself in a mirror so much that she hypnotized herself into believing her fantasies. For example: her and Rob have Ariana and Tom over for dinner and Scheana seems to believe that Rob’s house is also her house. Then, while everyone is sitting down to a catered dinner prepared by a private chef (who works for Rob, not Scheana) Scheana explains that on paper she’s technically married which is why she can’t marry Rob until July. Turns out, she’s delusional AND crazy. (I really think this could be a botox study) And, OK, did anyone else want to banish her from earth when she shared that she had a countdown app on her phone that was counting down the days till her divorce was finalized? Fortunately Scheana wasn’t the only one making the dinner awkward. When Scheana makes a comment about having sex with Rob, Tom tries to get Ariana to agree to have sex with him, to which she responds with nothing.

Schwartz and Katie fight more.

And then we’re taken back to the 90s. Lala and Ariana are shopping and when they begin talking about Ariana and Tom’s relationship and the lack of sexual activity in it, all of a sudden it was like I was watching an episode (because it was too shitty to be compared to the movie) of Clueless where they had a vision of what they would be like after high school. Ariana was saying things like “I’m not craving a P in the V sitch” and Lala was saying things like “blowies” and then was overly shocked about Ariana’s celibacy revelation. Even though they both reminded me of the time my friend Vicky and I spoke like Valley girls because we wanted to sound like the characters in Clueless, Lala did have a sweet (albeit, graphic) message for Ariana and hopefully she’s able to have sex with Tom again.

Now Lisa is fighting with Schwartz and Schwartz is fidgeting like the more he moves his hands the sooner Lisa will stop talking.

AND NOW we’re back to hating Scheana. Kristen, Scheana and Scheana’s fake ponytail are helping Brittany prepare for the Brittany and Jax’s house warming party that nobody thought should happen. While setting up, Kristen and Brittany tell Scheana about Rob making out with another woman and Scheana doesn’t believe it. She didn’t believe it so much that she felt she had to validate her relationship by telling Stassi, who doesn’t even like her, about how great her relationship is and how her and Rob are going to get a house and a bunch of other stuff she made up in her head. Let’s just all be honest about how we felt about the rumor and her finding out: we didn’t care.

Anyway, everyone is having a super great time at the party, UNTIL, another domino effect. Brittany walks in on Jax talking to Carter about the whole cheating scandal and gets emotional and tries to appeal to Jax about why he should talk to her, to which Jax responds by applauding her acting skills (which were pretty good for being so drunk). Lala and Kristen hear the entire exchange and Lala gets pissed. Ariana meets her on the balcony and Lala tells her about a recording she has that captures Jax bad-mouthing Brittany. Oh gee wiz, now what? I’ll tell you: they tell drunk Brittany who drunkenly cusses Jax out in front of everyone and then kicks him out of the apartment. Good plan, Lala and Ariana.

But wait! There’s still one more person to hate, and that person is all of us who watch this show and help them continue to get paid. I hate us all. But now is not the time to practice self-love; I need to know what happens next week. So as you were. Hate on.

To hear more of Typical Jenn’s factual opinions, email

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Vanderpump Rules: Absinthe-minded

I have two friends; two women that I hang out with and confide in and can genuinely call friends. Sometimes I think I want two more friends, a thought that usually comes to me when I’m watching Sex And The City reruns. Then I watch Vanderpump Rules.. and I immediately defect. Is this what groups of friends are like? I can’t stand group text messages let alone a group filled with problems, yet each week these people manage not to hurl each other off a bridge. Someone is always hating someone and this week was no different.

The “Kill Jax” party has finally come to an end and the girls are nursing their hangovers with Taco Bell (to be fair, who hasn’t?). Oh, real quick, do you remember when Katie apologized to Lala for spreading the married man rumor? OK, neither does Katie because when Scheana brings up her trip to Vegas with Lala (courtesy of Lala’s boyfriend and his private jet) Katie informs the girls that if she ever flies private it’ll be because SHE chartered the jet, not a married boyfriend. Her Instagram page tells a different story but we’re only in episode four so I’m sure we’ll get there. Anyway, Scheana comes to Lala’s defense and eventually Katie drops it. Just when the girl talk switches back to P, Jax “the ruiner of girls lives” Taylor walks in and the room goes from country Taylor Swift to Look What You Made Me Do Taylor Swift in microseconds.After making a comment on the condition of the house Brittany begins to lay into him, prompting him to respond by telling her “people are dying of cancer” and she’s “not even that devastated” (not about the cancer, or maybe, I don’t know). This prompts Brittany to get up, walk over to him and begin to slap and push him. In her defense she DID tell him she would be going crazy so his toss around came with a disclaimer.

Somewhere in between Taco Bell and the Jax attack, the Tom’s met with Lisa and Ken to discuss their partnership in the new restaurant. Lisa offers them 10% ownership (each) for an investment of $120,000 (each). Unfortunately they don’t have that kind of money because they’ve given most of their money to Coors Light. After what Schwartz refers to as a Shark Tank experience (it was) they all agree on $50,000 for 5% ownership. A celebration ensues, one that consists of that one song that Sandoval made I think 2 seasons ago and some more Coors Light. The Tom’s take the party back to Schwartz’s house where they announce the good news to Katie and Stassi, proclaiming they are now grown ups, with Schwartz throwing in “I have good hair”, the only quality you need to be a business owner.

Where was Ariana? She was at Scheana’s watching her pack for her Vegas trip. Um, did anyone else call bullshit when Scheana claimed that her and Lala had been friends for about 2 years? Does she think we forgot about last season? Last season that was less than a year ago? Last season where Scheana made herself look like an ass and was a complete prick to Lala all because of Katie? Well in case you forgot, that’s what happened. But time works different when it comes to reality TV so I guess one season equals 2 years. Anyway, Lala joins Scheana and Ariana and of course, Scheana has to bring up that Katie mentioned the married man rumor again. And how does Lala react? By asking if Katie wants to “get popped”. Now listen, I’m from a border town so I giggled when she said that. But I also thought, Christ, back in my day girls just wrote messages on bathroom stalls that stated they wanted to kick your ass. Now these psychos have reality shows where they can recite rap lyrics to get their point across. Anyway, after threatening to shoot Katie with her gun-fingers Lala then decides to tell the girls that Schwartz cheated on Katie with one of her friends. Ariana decides that she’s going to confront Schwartz and she’s going to do it at the most appropriate time and place: Guillermo’s (Lisa’s business partner) birthday party – the birthday party that Stassi actually planned and also happened to be her first gig as an event planner.

There actually wasn’t anything interesting about her working, other than the fact that she was actually working. She does manage to pull off a great party, and the sight of Guillermo alone makes Schwartz believe he could be a Guillermo, minus all of his good qualities. No need to tell us that Schwartz, because right after that Ariana decides to pull him outside and confront about the rumor, even though he’s incredibly drunk. Although, I’m starting to believe it’s all for the cameras because he takes ridiculously small sips of his beer and as a beer drinker myself I can say that a) he’s drinking beer like it’s wine, and b) how are you getting that drunk when those sips would put you at an average of one beer every 2 hours? It’s my assumption and I’m sticking to it, but I digress. Ariana tells him what she heard and his response is what it always is: I don’t remember. Last season I said Schwartz was the most level-headed. This season I think he needs counseling and AA. He then tells Katie in front of everyone, is a complete jerk about it, laughs it off, THEN he tells Lisa about the incident and then explains that he gets so shit-faced he doesn’t remember – which I’m sure is exactly what his new business partner wanted to hear.

While the gang is consoling Katie and scolding Schwartz, Jax is hanging out with his new friend James Kennedy and it appears as though they’re having a great time. They’re talking, Jax does that trick where it looks like his thumb is detachable, James is hallucinating – it’s a regular boys night out. Of course, they could be having fun because of the shot of the incredibly potent absinthe they took, which means the saying is true: Absinthe makes the heart grow fonder.

I hate myself.

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Vanderpump Rules

When I was younger I used to make fun of my mom for watching All My Children, a soap opera from the 1900s that I found to be absolutely ridiculous. People would disappear and reappear at random, story lines became more outrageous or were repeated using different people, and there was always the possibility of an affair between friends. Pfft, garbage. “I don’t know how you watch this crap”, I would say to my mother, a comment that got me in trouble for my use of the word “crap” (which is probably why I curse so much now). Anyway, the point is my mom watched crap.

And here I sit, more than 20 years later, preparing to give you the rundown on a show where people disappear and reappear at random, story lines become more outrageous or are repeated using different people, and there is always the possibility of an affair between friends. (I’m not my mom. I’m not my mom. I’m not my mom)

That’s right. Vanderpump Rules is back and their reality is better scripted than ever! We’re only one episode in but already half of the casts’ lives are in peril and the other half still has the rest of the season to go. And just like their writers did for the season premiere, let’s go ahead and dive right in.

So how about that Scheana? I’m not paranoid or anything but last season I couldn’t help but feel like Scheana’s sole purpose on the show was to annoy me. All she did was whine and cry and performed circus tricks for acceptance, all while simultaneously staring at herself in a mirror and ignoring her husband. A mere few months later and Scheana 2.0 has a new boyfriend, is now friends with Lala, and no longer speaks to Katie and Stassi. In fact, the days of Scheana crawling behind Katie are so over that she makes it a point to tell Katie that she isn’t invited to her birthday party. In addition to reinventing her attitude she’s also reinvented her apartment; she took it from a Scheana shrine with an occasional photo of Shay peppered in and turned it into a Scheana shrine with a bedroom that’s been converted into a walk-in closet. “A dream come true” she proclaims.

Katie and Stassi seem to have adjusted to life without Scheana. Stassi has a new apartment and is back with her ex-boyfriend, Patrick. Katie is enjoying married life, reassuring us viewers that her and Schwartz are headed for the ultimate in #couplegoals – death. Mazel tov. However, before they can get there Schwartz (finally) has some business to attend to: making the restaurant Tom Tom happen with Tom Sandoval. How hard could it be? Incredibly if Tom Sandoval has any say in it, which he believes he has all the say in it. It turns out the deal Tom squared was offered was an investment deal that made each Tom a 10% owner with an investment of $100K. Sandoval isn’t quite clear about how this works and while at SUR, voices his concerns to Ariana regarding Ken and Lisa’s control over the whole project. And just around the corner, Ken and Lisa sit, overhearing every word. (Dun dun dun!) As expected Lisa is pissed and it looks like Sandoval may have blown this whole thing.

Good job, Sandoval. Surprisingly that wasn’t even the biggest fuck up of the episode. Nope. It’s Scheana’s birthday party and everyone is there; even people you forgot were on the show once. First, Scheana introduces her new boyfriend, Rob, to Lisa and boasts “this is all I’ve wanted for 10 years” to which Lisa responds by shutting her down and reminding her that she WAS married at one point and not to discount that. THEN former SURver Faith tells Brittany how beautiful she is, then proceeds to tell James that she slept with Jax and could be pregnant. (Dun dun dun!) Sandoval has already heard this rumor and could have easily called Jax about it but the party seemed more like the perfect place to discuss it. Jax, who’s had so many nose jobs he’s starting to sound like he has permanent allergies, denies the allegations because he’s Jax. It gets back to Brittany and the episode ends with Brittany threatening to take the dogs and leave him if the rumor is true.

Other things that happened were James’ girlfriend is back, Kristen got a combined total of one minute of air time, Jax and Brittany live down the hall from Katie and Schwartz, Ariana cut her hair, Sandoval did not know nostalgia was a word.

Speaking of words it’s time to play “What’s the Word?” But because this is 2017, the year that declared war on me, they’ve all decided to recycle the word “literally”. No worries, we still have two more episodes to go before we have to guess the official word or phrase of the season.

In the meantime we have so much more to figure out: did Jax cheat on Brittany? Is Faith pregnant? Will Tom Tom still get to be part owners of Tom Tom? Will they say more words so the game I invented won’t be a total loss? Find out next week on the continuing story of Typical Jenn writes about Vanderpump Rules.

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A Head Full of Ghosts by: Paul Tremblay

This. Book. Is. Trippy. The story is set around a girl who may or may not be possessed and a reality show documenting the ordeal, and every time you think you know what’s about to happen, you don’t. The end is a twist I didn’t see coming and while I read this earlier this year I STILL don’t know what I think, which is precisely what it’s meant to do. If you’re looking for a horror novel that will, for the next few months, make you think “what the hell just happened?!” then this is your Halloween read. Enjoy!


Jax Goes to His Own Personal Hell for 2 Weeks

As made evident by some of my blog posts, every so often I like to pick a reality show and write about it. Vanderpump Rules is on that list and since it’s starting its new life as a spinoff machine I figured I would write about its first: Jax and Brittany Take Kentucky. I’m already off to a bad start because I recently found out it debuted last week and episode two airs today. So I watched episode one yesterday and, well… Usually I do a full write-up but this time I’m just going to write about my thoughts during the show as well as on the notes I took, which means you’ll probably have to watch it to know what I’m talking about – a small price to pay for this masterpiece. Let us begin:

• What the hell am I doing?

• I don’t get paid, I don’t really have to watch or write about this show.

• I already don’t care about what’s happening

• Did they just open with ‘this season on…’? Is there going to be another season? They’re on a farm, Brittany wants to get married and Jax is an asshole; I’m not even sure how they made a season 1. The only way there can be a season 2 is if they get married on this farm because they’re still talking about ‘this season on’ and I’m already bored and… wait, oh god is that going to be the next season? They pay them to get married on the farm and hilarity ensues? Forget I said anything about getting married on the farm. Don’t do it! DO NOT DO IT!

• So far the previews show a whole lot of Jax fighting with people. They should’ve just called this “Jax is Also an Asshole in Kentucky.”

• God it’s officially starting.

• Oh OK, you can’t shake a stick in SUR without hitting someone in their nose job but I’m expected to believe that Jax, Brittany and Lisa Vanderpump are the ONLY employee’s at the bar? Got it.

• Well it is their show so I guess. Just another thing the Vanderpump Rules chums can fight about.

• Kentucky. For 2 weeks. With Brittany’s religious family. What could possibly go wrong?

• Mamaw is what my Mexican grandma would be like if she cared about meeting people.

• So far Jax has to be Memaw’s man and do farm work, has been asked to pray, was told he could not drink alcohol, was given overalls to work in, and was grilled on when him and Brittany are getting married. New title: “Jax Goes to His Own Personal Hell for 2 Weeks.”

• If you think about it, the dog peeing on the pillow was poetic in a way. As if to say “piss on this entire show.” I agree.

• This is like the farm episode of Paris and Nicole: The Simple life and Jax is both Paris and Nicole.

• Oh jeez, if you’re a hardcore feminist DO NOT WATCH THIS SHOW. Brittany is not trying to hear your lecture “there is more to life than being married and having kids by the time you’re 30.”

• Jax, if you are reading this, the reason Brittany’s dad, Don, didn’t give you the chainsaw is because he wanted to make sure everyone’s limbs remained intact. As a horror fanatic from Texas I can assure you that chainsaw’s do damage.

• OK at this point even I’m getting tired of the “when are you getting married?” questions.

• Oh no, bible verses. Listen, you can’t just spring bible verses on someone who just tried – and failed – to prove their manliness by swinging away with an axe, unsuccessfully, at a tree for 30 minutes. That’s not helping.

• This bonfire is tame compared to the ones that friends’ of my husband have hosted. I witnessed a guy eat a wasp and drink a girl’s pee for money at one, and at the other a guy drunkenly ran around yelling while showing off his penis.

• Good god, not only does Jax sneak alcohol like a kid but reacts like one when he’s about to get caught. You don’t hide alcohol from Memaw, in the south, using a red solo cup. It’s all about YETI and/or RTIC cups, wake up.

• Oh this is just rich, OK, this was almost – ALMOST – worth watching this show. To deflect from him almost getting caught drinking he pulls Sherri and Memaw aside and shows them a picture of the ring (an image he no doubt Googled) he’s having made for Brittany and explains his plans to propose. Yeah OK. This reminds me of when I was 14 and I was hanging out with a boy from the neighborhood and I missed my 7PM curfew and my mom stood outside screaming my name like a lunatic and when I got home I tried to deflect by talking about how amazing Madonna looked for having just turned 40.

• Hahahahaha, and he thinks telling them this will take the getting-married-pressure off of him for a while. Take it from 14-year-old Jenn, man, you’re just making it worse.

• Next time on “Jax Goes to His Own Personal Hell for 2 Weeks”, Memaw finds out they were drinking because this isn’t her first bonfire.

OK, writing about it was more entertaining than I thought, I suppose I should keep watching. So let’s take it from the top:

• What the hell am I doing?