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VPR: Fans Are Noticing A Parallel Between Scandoval And Gone Girl

Comparing "Vanderpump Rules" to a great work of fiction seems like a losing battle on the surface. Novels have intricately plotted narratives, memorable characters, and talented writers at the helm; the hot dummies on "Vanderpump Rules" do a lot of screaming and toss drinks on each other. Sure, there are some twisted ways you could look at the romantic entanglements on "Vanderpump Rules" as a Jane Austen novel run amok, but connecting literature to the Bravo universe still feels absurd. Not according to some Reddit users, it's not!

u/binabulu, a self-professed mega-fan of both "Vanderpump Rules" and the Gillian Flynn novel "Gone Girl" (as well as its subsequent film adaptation), created an entire Reddit thread wondering about the similarities between the two properties. Their argument rests heavily on the novel and film's famous "cool girl" speech, where Amy Elliott Dunne (played onscreen by Rosamund Pike) laments the fact that women always make themselves into the "cool girl" men seem to want, only for those men to eventually move on once they get bored and want a different variation.

As they argue, Scandoval is basically explained by Flynn's "cool girl" theory: "This description reminds me of Ariana [Madix] when she first came on the scene for Tom [Sandoval]. In comparison to Kristen Doute], Ariana was all things cool girl. Forgiving, understanding, willing to look the other way in questionable circumstances. ... Cue the moment both Nick [Ben Affleck] and Tom find their new cool girl. A tale as old as time."

Fans of Vanderpump Rules and Gone Girl found some wild similarities between the two

The Redditor continues their argument by saying that the "OG cool girl," here meaning Ariana Madix, is "stripped of her vibrancy" as the man simply moves right along to the newest, shiniest thing. Other fans definitely agreed; u/Happy_Parfait_5801 quoted from the book and movie, saying, "Ding ding ding! 'I love strong women' is code for 'I hate strong women.'" u/MKultrakeef loved the theory as well: "I thought of this theory too! So obvious that Tom is a guy who needs a woman willing to be Cool Girl."

Some disagreed slightly, in that they didn't think Madix was trying to be anything she wasn't — and that she had a plan when things started feeling off with her boyfriend of nine years, Sandoval, though her plan was definitely less intense than Amy Elliott Dunne's. As u/nyx926 said, "Amy crafted a fake character to be with Nick because she was a narc/psychopath (co-morbid for several PDs), not because she was navigating the world in good faith," arguing that Madix wasn't doing the same thing, and said earlier in the thread, "Ariana trusted someone that was abusing her covertly and fully committed to deceiving her. He weaponized her being chill against her."

Ultimately, most of the Redditors on the thread agreed that, unlike Amy, Madix is definitely not a sociopath, but Tom is basically exactly like Nick Dunne — a man who uses women to boost his own ego.

Gone Girl takes some turns that probably won't happen on Vanderpump Rules

With all of that theorizing behind us, there are definitely some things that happen in "Gone Girl" that probably won't come to fruition on "Vanderpump Rules." The book and film both open with Pike's Amy missing on the day of her fifth anniversary to Affleck's Nick, and as he scrambles to track down his wife, the audience learns that Amy has actually staged her abduction and plans to stage her murder as well. That's when the "cool girl" speech kicks in, as Amy goes through every injustice Nick has ever caused her throughout their relationship and marriage... culminating in the betrayal that he's cheating on her with a much younger woman, or a new "cool girl."

From there, Amy only gets angrier, watching Nick get lambasted on a public stage as he's suspected of killing his wife — and frankly, enjoying every second of it until she sees Nick start to grovel for her to return. Return she does after slashing the throat of the man who's both her protector and captor, her former boyfriend Desi Collings (Neil Patrick Harris) and making a ton of false claims to law enforcement. Justifiably afraid of her, Nick is forced to retreat and, in the end, stay with her after she uses a long-forgotten sperm sample to get pregnant with his baby. "Gone Girl" might be inspiring to "Vanderpump Rules" fans, but it's definitely more hardcore.

Scandoval isn't quite as intense as Gone Girl

The "Vanderpump Rules" drama doesn't have the literary or film cache of "Gone Girl," for obvious reasons, but for fans of the show, it's still pretty juicy. In March 2023, Ariana Madix found incriminating FaceTime recordings of Rachel "Raquel" Leviss on her longtime boyfriend Tom Sandoval's phone, and the rest was history. From there, the two broke up, and a truly absurd sequence of events followed. Madix's only comment on the scandal thus far is an Instagram post noting that whatever doesn't kill her "better run." Sandoval went on Howie Mandel's podcast (for some reason) and blamed the entire thing on Madix, more or less. Leviss may or may not have faked a black eye, definitely did stage a bizarre TMZ interview in a strip mall, and was reportedly torn apart at the upcoming reunion. Also, Sandoval's best friend and business partner Tom Schwartz said entirely too much to everybody, as he is wont to do.

So, yeah — it doesn't look like Madix will force Sandoval into fatherhood in some twisted control move or, you know, fake her own death only to re-emerge covered in blood after murdering someone. She'll probably just move on with her life and leave Sandoval in the dust. While that dust is settling, though, this has been a pretty fascinating spectacle. You've gotta wonder what Gillian Flynn thinks of it all.