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glamping-vanderpump.jpeg

All the Red Flags in This Week's 'Vanderpump Rules'

By Chris Revelle | TV | May 4, 2023 |

By Chris Revelle | TV | May 4, 2023 |


glamping-vanderpump.jpeg

Another week, another platter of deep-fried soap opera from Vanderpump Rules. Last week was a beach blanket brawl and another Sandoval fit. If you’re feeling lost, here is a primer on Scandoval (a scandal that’s yet to unfold on the show) and an earlier recap’s additional explainer.

My partner wondered, “Is everyone five years old?” Only in spirit! Here are this week’s Red Flags.

Red Flag
The Toms, Raquel, Scheana, and Brock are off on a glamping trip together. They pull up to a yurt-campground (complete with goats and pigs) owned by a cute gay couple. Schwartz is excited that he can “pee anywhere.” Wow, great.

The Toms immediately compare their testicles to animal testicles, and there’s no joke being made. They’re just like, “hehe, they’re like ur ballz.” If this show is secretly written by a cabal of mean-spirited gay men playing an elaborate game with straight people, it would make a LOT of sense.

Red Flag
Lauryn From Utah meets up for shit-talk with “DJ” James, and they get into Raquel and Schwartz. We start a sequence in which LFU recites salacious gossip about Raquel in voice-over as the cast acts it out. It’s bizarre, and I love it. Deranged community theater energy. Anyway, while making sandwiches at Lisa Vanderpump’s place, Lisa’s kindly undead husband Ken doddles in to toss out some hot goss about Raquel spending the night at Sandoval’s home recently. He wanders off, producer-mandated lines delivered. Lisa elaborates: Raquel was an hour and a half late to work, looking unkempt before explaining that she stayed at Sandoval’s place. Sandoval reluctantly confirms as much on a call.

We’re not done with VPR Theater! We rewind to a Labor Day party that Sandoval attended when Ariana was at home dealing with the news of her grandma’s death. He tells her he’ll leave the party but stays for another two hours to hang with Raquel. This leads LFU to confidently say that Sandoval and Raquel are doing something. She compares it to Sandoval cheating on Kristen with Ariana at the Golden Nugget casino. I am pained to say that LFU is correct. Or it’s the producer who spent a lot of time on a yarn-board.

Red Flag
At the, sigh, glampsite, everyone sits under some GATHER word art. Ariana tears up, talking about how wonderful her grandmother was and continues in a talking head that losing her dog and grandma at once has been a lot.

Ariana asks what happened while she was away. Raquel and Sandoval talk about a party they went to and then claim that Raquel slept on Sandoval’s couch. The editors cut to Schwartz and Sandoval telling Brock that Raquel didn’t stay over, Schwartz did. They try to brush this off by claiming that after Ally witnessing a maybe-tryst, they didn’t want the heat. Everyone at the table accepts this, and they cheers their drinks. COME ON! They’re practically serving this affair up.

Red Flag
Scheana and Ariana lounge in a yurt. Scheana relays the insinuation from Katie that Ariana and Sandoval have an open relationship. Ariana shows how much more mature she is than everyone else by shrugging it off. No knock on those who do, but they don’t want an open relationship. Ariana feels Raquel is “sweet and lovely.” Not for long.

Red Flag
Ariana asks Raquel about her peach and pit of being 27. Raquel says leaving James was both a peach and a pit because it was painful but necessary. Sandoval roars, shouting a sermon about Raquel’s greatness and “being a badass,” but everyone looks a little taken aback. Reciting sonnets to your secret lover in front of your girlfriend is a totally cool move, right?

Red Flag
Everyone except Raquel receives an invite to Kristina Kelly’s Heartspring skincare party because Katie is KK’s friend. Schwartz offers to be Raquel’s date, but she deflects and suggests they go as friends. They banter awkwardly while everyone looks bored, and they fail to run interference on Scandoval.

Red Flag
Raquel tearfully reflects on her past experiences in pageants and how they subjected her to toxic dynamics. Schwartz tries to make this about himself and how everyone is against him, just like with Raquel. Ariana tells Raquel she should be proud of how far she’s come through difficulty and pain. Raquel puts her head on Ariana’s shoulder while Scandoval’s shadow looms.

Red Flag
At Kristina Kelly’s party, Schwartz tries to chat with Katie and LFU, but Katie shoots icy laser beams out of her eyes. While Schwartz fetches drinks, LFU asks Katie if things will always be like this. Katie says she’ll relax if Schwartz apologizes, but he pouts that he wasn’t welcomed with open arms.

Red Flag
Raquel confronts James about him saying he regrets loving her in the last episode. James backpedals a little, but in a talking head, he admits that Raquel is not the girl for him, and of course, he regrets proposing. Back in their conversation, he shrugs and says that he doesn’t recognize Raquel anymore before dissolving into a swarm of bats.

Red Flag
Ariana and LFU bond over skincare goody bags, and LFU reveals that Sandoval stayed at the Labor Day party when Ariana asked him to come home and be with her after her grandmother’s death. Sandoval told Ariana he couldn’t get an Uber back home. LFU and Ariana don’t believe him and confront him. Sandoval tries to lie, but they poke holes in his story, and the episode ends with them staring him down.

Red Flags: 10 (down 3 from 13 last week)

Iconic Shot of the Episode: Sandoval, pinned between LFU and Ariana, contorts his body to avoid their eyes and nervously runs his fingers through his hair. A modern triptych. Call it Lamentations of the Bozo.

Chris Revelle is a chatterbox with a lot of thoughts about media and can be heard shrieking about them on the podcast Why Did We Watch This?