The Vanderpump Rules star, 40, and the former Bachelor, 43, find themselves pitted against each other on the Fox show’s Monday, October 16, episode, which features the recruits’ first combat challenge.
“In the Special Forces world, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the worst thing we have to come up against is hand-to-hand combat — what we’d call milling,” directing staff member Mark “Billy” Billingham tells the group after they arrive at the remote location. “Kill or be killed.”
In the brutal “test of character,” the cast is tasked with fighting each other until the DS calls time and declares a winner. Tyler Cameron is first up, defeating Olympic gold medalist Bode Miller before Sandoval and Viall find themselves in the ring.
“When I wrestled in high school, there would be guys that were better than me, but I’d wear them out,” Sandoval says before the fight begins, noting that this refusal to “give up” is what would often lead him to victory. Viall, for his part, shares that while he has a “fighter” inside him — it’s “never come out in a physical altercation.”
“I hope my competitive nature will kick in,” Viall says to the cameras just seconds before Billingham tells him to “kill” Sandoval.
“We don’t care if you get knocked to the ground. We don’t care if you lose your teeth,” DS Rudy Reyes explains in a confessional. “What we’re looking for is the fight inside of you. Will you keep getting up?”
Both men seem evenly matched while throwing punches until Sandoval eventually takes the win — but can’t seem to control himself even after he’s instructed to stop. “Get a grip on yourself,” Billingham tells the Pump Rules star before throwing him back in the ring as a reprimand for his “lack of self-control.”
Sandoval’s next fight is against Jack Osbourne, who reveals he has a bit of training in the area of hand-to-hand combat. “I’m a pretty good fighter,” he shares. “I compete in tournaments in jiu-jitsu. I’m not super aggressive right out of the gate. I play the long game and tire out whoever I’m fighting. Then I attack.”
The DS team hopes to see Sandoval “prove he can control himself,” but Osbourne, 37, ultimately ends up triumphant, leaving Sandoval with a bloody nose.
“Emotions are the most powerful thing a person has,” Reyes explains. “We’re not looking for anger. We’re looking for a laser-focused, switched-on operator.”
As the show plays out his fight against Osbourne, Sandoval shares that he has been carrying around “a lot of anger” in the “past few months” and worries that his emotions will get the best of him.
Sandoval made headlines earlier this year when he cheated on ex-girlfriend Ariana Madix with Pump Rules costar Raquel Leviss. Us Weekly confirmed in March that Sandoval and Madix, 38, split after nine years together in the wake of the scandal.
While Madix has moved on with Daniel Wai and Leviss, 28, checked herself into a mental health facility in April, Sandoval previously revealed that he joined Special Forces as a type of punishment for his infidelity. “The whole world is pissed off at me,” he said in an August trailer for the show. “I had an affair and now I want to take a beating.”
After Monday’s combat challenge, the DS begin having concerns about Sandoval’s state of mind. Taking him in for tactical questioning, they ask him about the reason behind his recent “bad” performances.
“I had an affair. She’s also on [Vanderpump Rules]. It just was the perfect storm, my publicist had never seen anything like it,” he explains. “A reality star having an affair on CNN? It’s so stupid. It became this ‘Team Ariana’ thing, they sold $200,000 in merch in, like, two weeks. Seeing people I’ve been friends with for decades just turn on me, it’s just so exhausting.”
The DS instructors, however, have little sympathy for his tears, calling him “pathetic” for attempting to “play [the] victim” when he isn’t one. “The first thing you should be doing is owning it,” DS Jason “Foxy” Fox says.
Since the fallout from Scandoval, Sandoval and Leviss have paused their relationship, with Leviss even blocking him on Instagram. Sandoval is also not currently on speaking terms with Madix despite the pair still living in the same house. Both are also currently filming season 11 of Vanderpump Rules. (Leviss confirmed in August that she would not return for season 11 of the Bravo series.)
“This course is your opportunity to be a person of integrity to the people that are around you and us. Make this your new start,” Fox continues, to which Sandoval replies, “Yes. That’s what I want.”
Special Forces: World’s Toughest Test season 2 airs on Fox Mondays at 9 p.m. ET.