When you open up a copy of The New York Times Magazine, you expect to see social and political commentary, high fashion editorial spreads, and critical analyses of the latest in arts and culture. Well, hold onto your self tanner, because the likes of Jax Taylor, Tom Sandoval, and Kristen Doute have now made it into these illustrious pages.
The latest installment of the "Letter of Recommendation" is dedicated to Vanderpump Rules. In each issue of The New York Times Magazine, a writer pens something of a love letter to a part of pop culture that has been overlooked or underrated. In this edition, Naomi Fry, the copy chief of T: The New York Times Style Magazine professes her love for the reality series, not so much because of the drama or the personalities of the SURvers, but because she takes comfort in knowing that the cast members will remain the same from season to season.
"Watching it, especially after a long day at my own job, feels like a tonic for all that ails me. But this isn’t only because the show helps me relax and forget," Naomi wrote. "The experience of life that the show exemplifies — a miasmic forever-present where not a whole lot happens and the pressures of achievement appear mostly absent — parallels a utopian, even resistant, impulse in me."
The writer goes on to say that unlike on other reality series, Vanderpump Rules does not seem to be obsessed with success. Though the cast members dream of careers beyond waiting tables or bartending, many of them have continued to work at SUR, even though the author also points out that they have achieved success in becoming reality TV stars. Still, the fact that most of their relationships have remained within this friend group and the cast seemingly never ages over the years adds to the comfort Naomi gains in seeing that these people never change.
"The series remains a near-pure portrait of motionlessness, a still point in the turning world," Naomi wrote. "Watching it is like having my brain stroked to a very low-grade, consequence-free orgasm — a pleasurable sort of noninvolvement. And I never once have to compare myself unfavorably with the people onscreen."
In the end, the writer recognizes that although we probably shouldn't aspire to be like the SURvers all of the time, it's nice to kick back with them for an hour every Monday. ‘‘'Vanderpump Rules' is like that burnout friend who always urges you to take that smoke break, to have another drink, to call in sick to work. And see, now: Don’t you feel better already?" she wrote.
We can only imagine that the Vanderpump Rules squad will probably feel proud to be featured in the pages of The New York Times Magazine. Lisa Vanderpump and Andy Cohen have already voiced how thrilled they are by the recognition.
Love it or hate it, if The New York Times Magazine covers it, Vanderpump Rules has to be an important part of our culture, right?
In case you need more reasons to love Vanderpump Rules, this tantaliziing sneak peek of next Monday night's episode should do it.