“This season has been phenomenal,” McBride, 46, said during his Monday, July 17, appearance on the “Smartless” podcast, which is hosted by Bateman, 54, Arnett and Hayes, both 53. “I stopped watching it for a while and then I heard about this affair that happened and I was like, ‘Oh, I need to tune back in and see what these Vanderpumps have been up to.”
When Arnett, who claimed he hasn’t seen “a single frame” of the Bravo series, asked if “Vanderpumps” was the last name of the cast members, McBride once again used his knowledge to break down how the show got its moniker.
“Lisa Vanderpump is the lady who owns the restaurant they all work at,” McBride explained, referencing SUR, where viewers initially meet the cast on season 1. “But I like just saying it plural, I think it sounds [more] fun.”
McBride noted that his affinity for Pump Rules — a show which he claimed is “on fire right now”— comes from his brain not wanting to “commit” to anything beyond reality TV.
Bateman, for his part, revealed that he has tuned in to Pump Rules on occasion and praised the program for knowing its audience. “I love all that. Just the way they make those shows now, that reality world. It’s really well done,” he said. “They’ve figured it out. There’s a format there, and they’re starting to play with the format too, and I like that stuff.”
While Bateman, McBride and Hayes — who called shows like Jersey Shore and Pump Rules “watercooler” programs — gushed over the reality TV space, Arnett had a few hesitations.
“Here’s what’s weird. I know [Bravo executive] Andy Cohen a little bit and I saw a few clips. I guess some s—t went down on Vanderpump recently that blew everybody’s mind. There was, like, an affair and there’s a whole thing,” he recalled. “Here’s the thing — they talk about [each other] like they’re characters. … And you’re like, ‘What the f—k are we talking about? What is going on?”
Scandoval — the now-infamous cheating scandal referenced by Arnett — first made headlines in March when Us Weekly confirmed Ariana Madix called it quits with Tom Sandoval after she discovered he was having a months-long affair with costar Raquel Leviss. The drama then continued to play out on the season 10 finale, which aired in May, and its subsequent three-part reunion.
Earlier this month, the series received its first Emmy nomination for Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program and Outstanding Picture Editing.
While the breakdown of the relationship between Madix, 37, and Sandoval, 40, clearly reflected real life, Bateman questioned how much of Pump Rules’ conflict is actually authentic during Monday’s podcast. “You know, they kind of fight the instinct — or maybe they’re asked to — kind of fight the instinct to cause trouble to make for good drama probably, so I wonder how much of it is them,” he wondered, to which McBride suggested that everyone involved is likely vying for their time to shine.
“So many of these reality shows are ensembles and it seems like everybody’s fighting for their notoriety. Or how they leave their mark and how they become the most exciting trainwreck on the show,” he joked.