'Vanderpump Rules' stars Jax Taylor and Tom Schwartz dish on season 4 drama
BY: SAM FOX
Bravo's wildly popular "Vanderpump Rules" is back for a fourth season as Lisa Vanderpump promises to take SUR - and the show - to a whole new level. The new season kicked off on November 2 at Scheana's usual drama-packed birthday party.
Throughout the premiere, we learned that Kristen doesn't want James blabbing about her friendship with Carmen, Jax got a third nose job and - wait for it - Tom Schwartz is finally ready to propose to Katie!
We were lucky enough to chat with Tom Schwartz and Jax Taylor, who provided further insight about what to expect this season. While we still don't know the whole scoop, we do know that this season will be centered on "commitment" for two of our favorite leading men. Not only has Tom finally decided to, in his own words, "put a ring on it," but Jax is also in a serious relationship! It seems the stars have aligned and TV's favorite bromance is finally ready to pursue legitimate romance.
That being said, just because the guys are taking their relationships to the next level, doesn't mean their party-boy antics will die down in any way. Jax and Tom promised that their scenes with the bros will be just as ridiculous, outrageous and hilarious as ever.
After sitting down and talking with the guys, we learned all about their favorite behind-the-scenes moments, how they really feel about the "Real Housewives" and why they think of their fans as family.
What can you tell us about this coming season? How would you describe it?
Tom: I think it's a redeeming season. It's a story of redemption for a lot of us. I think I finally learned to commit.
Jax: I'm hoping that I'm going down that road. I'd like to think I am. We typically one up every season but we don't go in planning for that to happen. It just happens. It's a very dynamic group. There's a lot of ups and downs...per usual.
Tom: Let's think of recurring themes. Redemption, relationships are hard, somebody will be making a comeback, there are a few newbies getting thrown into the mix.
Bravo shows are known for their cast vacations — are you guys going anywhere this season?
Tom: All I can say is we went to a place I've always wanted to go to. We had a great time. Well, most of us did (looks at Jax).
Jax: I mean, I had fun at the beginning!
Tom: He started so strong.
Jax: I did! I just ended poorly. Things were going too good so I had to find a way to sabotage it.
Is there a scene or episode that you're most excited about?
Tom: I had a big moment this season. A very big moment. There was so much thought, anticipation and pressure put into it. Pressure that I liked, of course. I was relishing in it but there was so much happening it'll be exciting to see it played back and to re-live it.
Would this be the same moment with Katie we get a glimpse of in the trailer?
Tom: Yes I believe it is. Let's just say I liked it so I put a ring on it. It was a huge shock to everybody because nobody really knew.
Jax: It was top secret. And the way it happened is really cool. When you watch it, it's just crazy.
Tom: I'm glad to say I finally pulled the trigger. I like torturing Katie. There was an ultimatum in place, but I'm glad it finally happened.
Any exciting moment or scene for you, Jax?
Jax: Well I'm obviously in a relationship now and that's been going really well.
Tom: Let's back up for a second. Jax is in a relationship? We need to let this marinate for a little bit. It's a new leaf for him!
How's it feel?
Jax: Actually this one's really good. It's really easy. I've obviously dated girls who are kind of difficult and very "Hollywood." This one's just awesome. She's a really cool girl, she's really laid back.
How long have you two been dating?
Jax: Since May 24 to be exact. It's a long time for me. We met in Vegas and she started coming out to visit after that and eventually we just made the jump.
Tom: It's just too funny that Jax Taylor met his girlfriend in Vegas. If you know Jax, you know how hilarious that is.
Jax: I can't tell the story about how we met. Or where she works, that's even better. I'll tell you I was with another girl on that trip.
Tom: Literally this other girl is by his side and he just grabs the new one and ditched the other girl. He was like "yeah I can't wait to hang out later" and then he just never did.
What's the biggest difference between what we see on camera and what's happening off camera?
Tom: I would honestly say, and I'm not just trying to mess with you, that our show is really authentic. There's very little that's forced and contrived. We film so much and there's so much content, but they want to cram in so much drama in such little time. There's so much that goes on that people don't see.
Jax: People attack me a lot for what they see on the show but they don't see some of the good stuff that I do. We're all good people. Sure, there's some backstabbing and all that, but we're really close and everyone's there for each other at the end of the day. We all go the extra mile for each other. We do love each other. We just see each other every single day so it's a lot.
You guys are filming so often, how much time do you get off-camera?
Tom: When we're in the heat of filming, not much at all. It's nonstop even on our days off the crew will say we need to keep filming.
Jax: And they get really mad when we're all hanging out and there's no camera around. We were friends before this and we're not a casted show so we just continue with our lives even when the cameras aren't there. So they get really upset when something happens and they're not there. Every time we hang out, the people in the office will see on social media that we're at a bar or a club or whatever and they'll get anxiety about not being there. But we're not going to not do it. That's why we love our show. You can throw a camera into the mix but we're just being us and we're not going to change what we do.
What's it like to both work at SUR, but also star on a show about it? how do customers react? are they surprised you actually work there?
Jax: Well people don't think we actually work there. We're the only show on TV that you can actually come and see the cast and see us working. It's scary because there are crazies out there who can just walk in!
Tom: By crazies, he means angry girls that he's slept with.
Jax: Or their angry boyfriends.
Does Lisa ever get annoyed when that kind of drama is happening in her restaurant?
Tom: No, not at all. It's a double edged sword because you want to be nice to everybody and give them the benefit of the doubt, but they want to grill you and give you their opinion on your life.
Jax: And serving jobs are very demanding. It's hard to be a server, it's very intense. But when people recognize you, you feel obligated to stop and have a good conversation with them about a certain incident. So it's a tough balance. You have to be nice but you also can't talk to someone about your life for the next 30 minutes when you have a job to do.
What's it like to work for Lisa? How would you describe her as a boss?
Tom: I could go on and on. She's just the total package. She has an air about her like when she walks in a room she just lights it up. She's like royalty. But she's also down to earth and she has a family and a great perspective. She's a good mentor.
Jax: And she works hard. She's not someone who had everything handed to her. She's there every morning arranging the flowers. She works hard and is very hands-on. Of course, Lisa and I have a very different relationship. She loves to give me s*** and I'll give it right back. I'm not afraid of her.
Tom: I'm terrified of her.
Jax: A lot of people are very intimidated by her because she comes in and owns a room. But I just don't buy into her s*** because that's the relationship we have. So I'll test the waters and say things that probably aren't appropriate. But I can get away with it.
Tom: I like to be submissive around Lisa. She's my queen. Well, Katie's my number one queen, but Lisa's my number two. She's my "Woman Crush Wednesday." It's weird because she's like a motherly figure but then I also have a crush on her. I guess the point is that we love Lisa.
What's it like serving the cast of "The Real Housewives?" Are they exactly as they appear on TV? Do you have any favorite cast members?
Jax: It's awful. I think everyone will agree with me that they're just so on a different level of pretentious. The things they argue about are so much worse than us. The things they complain and b**** about are just ridiculous. I wonder if they listen to the things they complain about and realize how bad it sounds. One season there was like a foreign event with women from different countries. They were all fighting with each other speaking different languages. And the husbands...I honestly feel bad for the husbands. They're basically just props in these shows. And the women are fighting about the craziest things. It's a little much when we have to film with them.
Tom: I like Kyle and Lisa and I don't know the rest.
Jax: Kyle's awesome, she's such a sweet lady.
What would you say is the craziest thing to happen in the history of the show?
Tom: I think when Tom Sandoval punched Jax. It was a culmination of so many feelings. It had to happen, though. They needed that release.
Jax: There are so many things I've done on the show that I'm not proud of. That was probably the worst because it's so out of Tom's character to do that. We were sitting on the couch with a bunch of girls and Kristen was getting him all riled up, she's very good at doing that, and then the punch happened.
Tom: Tom's a very cool, composed guy. Don't get me wrong, he'll get p***** and livid, but not physical. So when he gets physical like that it's pretty intense.
What's your favorite moment in the show's history so far?
Tom: I think my favorite moment is when Tom shaved his forehead. I'd known the guy for four years and I had no idea that he did that. So when I realized he does that on a regular basis it was pretty shocking.
Hold on, so you just "put a ring on it" but you're saying your favorite moment was Tom shaving his forehead?
Tom: I was joking! Of course you know what my favorite moment was.
Jax: I really like the parts when it's just me, Tom and Tom. There weren't many this season, but it's so fun when the three of us get together. There are so many inside things that don't translate to the audience. It really sucks because there are some really funny things we do that are too inside for people to catch. But when the three of us are together it's definitely the most fun for me.
How do you guys use social media to connect with your fans?
Tom: I'm glad you asked that question. One thing I love about it is sometimes we get portrayed in a certain way on the show so you only see one facet. I like to think we're all multi-faceted, beautiful gem stones (laughs). But we really do have more layers and depth than people see. The show doesn't give us enough time to really show the full story. I use social media to just show the rest of me. You get to show some other sides of you and some of your other passions in life on social media.
Jax: Especially when someone doesn't watch the full season and only caught one episode and says "God that Jax is a f****** idiot." Well they only saw five minutes of a show they don't even know! They don't know the full story and are only pulling tidbits of everything. In reality, even people who watch the show regularly don't fully catch who we really are.
Tom: Well don't get him wrong, Jax is an idiot. But he's an idiot who loves hockey and has many interests and is also a very giving guy.
What are you each individually working on outside of the show?
Tom: Here's the thing. I moved here to be an actor, but now that I've started doing this show, I'm reassessing what I want to do with my life. I still go on casting calls and all that, but I'm at a fork in the road where I'm not sure which direction I want to go in. But I have to get my a** in gear because this obviously isn't going to last forever.
Jax: What's really good about this show is that it's opened a lot of doors. It gives us a lot of opportunities, which is amazing, but it also makes us reconsider what we want to do now that we have all these options. We use this "celebrity" or whatever you want to call it as a platform to find what we're passionate about and really go with it.
Tom: Yeah, I'm still trying to find my thing. I'm a little confused at the moment.
Jax: Which is okay, because this show has changed all of our outlooks on a lot of things.
Tom: I feel incredible pressure to launch something. It doesn't matter what it is, we just need to launch some s***.
Jax: I don't even know what it is, but I'm going to launch it. Everyone's launching s*** on reality TV! Skincare, clothing lines, people are designers who aren't even designers! So wait, after you ask that question in the article will you just place the cricket soundtrack? (Makes cricket noises).
What's your favorite thing about your fans?
Tom: They give me a lot of criticism, but I like it. Some of it's a little too far, but I like the constructive criticism, I like the love. My favorite things in general are just how interactive they are with us.
Jax: People love the show and they're very knowledgable about what's going on. The last time I was here, these people stopped me in the street and asked me questions and I was like wow they really pay attention. They're just really invested in the show. And obviously we wouldn't have any of this if it wasn't for them.
Tom: Exactly. I try to answer back to them a lot on social media as much as I can. They're great and we love them.
Jax: We're very appreciative.
Tom: There's a stigma attached to a lot of reality shows and it's tough to get respect. I'm not saying we have respect, but at least our fans love us. They're with us through the good, bad and hard times. They're kind of like family.
Click through this slideshow to see pics of the glorious bromance between Jax and Tom:
Watch this video to learn more about the fourth season of "Vanderpump Rules":
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