Okay everyone. It’s only Wednesday, it’s another fucking blizzard, and Lala Kent—breakout fan favorite of this season’s Vanderpump Rules—has somehow made my morning even worse. In a classic Stassi circa November move, Lala participated in a podcast episode that seems designed to ruin her career. And just like I did with Stassi’s podcast in November, I listened to the entire thing. Let’s dive in to the river of horseshit controversial comments Lala shared on Tuesday’s night episode of Juicy Scoop.
What Was Said
The most inflammatory part of this episode references Lala’s ongoing “feud” with Jennifer Lawrence. (ICYMI: J Law called Lala a cunt on Watch What Happens Live. Lala was mad.) This clip, conveniently located 72 minutes into the 75 minute episode, is already triggering some well-deserved outrage. Naturally, host Heather “I love burying ledes” McDonald was eager to get into the J Law drama. And the two of them got most of the shit-talking out of their system in the first five minutes. Beyond the typical “my feelings were hurt” and “she’s gross” and “congrats on the failed movies,” they kept it pretty clean. UNTIL: an hour later, we get this exchange seemingly out of nowhere:
Heather: Do you think [Jennifer Lawrence] ever did anything sexual with Harvey Weinstein?
Lala: Yeah. I think she’s that type of chick.
At this point, Heather starts breathing like she’s having a panic attack. Obviously, she asked an incredibly leading and inflammatory question, and I think part of her can’t believe Lala really fell for it. Lala herself seems aware she’s crossed a line, though she doesn’t seem interested in acknowledging it as a bad thing. If you’re at home wondering why exactly it IS such a bad thing, that’s what I’m here for. In the immortal words of Queer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness, let’s unpack that.
Why It’s So Fucked Up
First of all, Heather: “did anything sexual” is not appropriate terminology when discussing instances of alleged rape and sexual assault. To say the woman is “doing something sexual” when she’s under coercion, stripped of her agency and ability to be “doing” anything at all, is beyond cruel. Second, as literally everyone can agree, the instances of “sexual activity” with Harvey Weinstein under discussion are instances of alleged rape or assault. So why is Heather McDonald essentially posing the question, “do you think Harvey Weinstein ever preyed on Jennifer Lawrence?” as though it’s opportunity to talk shit? And why the fuck is Lala answering like she agrees? What is “that type of chick,” Lala? Because from where I’m standing, it sure as hell seems like what you’re referring to is a victim.
The Horror Continues
Heather at this point decides to abandon all remaining vestiges of dignity, saying she thinks it’s “interesting” how Jennifer Lawrence decided to “abandon” Harvey Weinstein right away. Unlike Meryl Streep, who she says only “distanced” herself. So like, congratulations Heather—you’ve found the only context in which Meryl Streep is not the classier alternative. (Also, both J Law and Meryl have publicly denounced Weinstein since. Just because Meryl didn’t immediately call for his incarceration does not mean she was standing by him.)
But again, I am so fucking confused about the stance being taken on Harvey Weinstein here. After Lala drops a few more charming tidbits about how J Law has a fat face and bad hair, the two women chill out a little and do manage to address the fact that Weinstein is a disgusting pig. (The word they’re looking for is predator, but I’ll take what I can get at this point.) Somehow, they don’t seem to see where that fact clashes with making nasty speculations about Weinstein and Lawrence being “sexual,” or trying to make her speaking out against Weinstein seem like a bad thing.
Lala Says Dumb Shit, Pt. 3
Then again, the other 72 minutes of this podcast really call into question how much Lala gives a shit about displaying human decency. About her friends: she wishes Raquel had “more than half a brain,” mocks Scheana’s singing voice and James’ DJing, and casually drops that Faith may or may not have committed identity theft and “pulled a knife” on her. (To be fair, this last point was in response to a reader question. But Lala, rather than denying it outright, basically indicates she’s not supposed to discuss it.) On relationships, Lala says she’s not dating Randall for the money—because if she were dating for the money, she’d go for “a billionaire about to croak.” And on why she so frequently engages in what Heather calls “urban-ish talk”? Well, Lala says it was a natural byproduct of her upbringing. You know, in Utah: the 39th least diverse state.
So yeah, suffice it to say that Lala is not the most reliable or kind witness when it comes to anything. But I’m a little astounded that someone who has vocally insisted on her status as a feminist has stooped so unbelievably low, simultaneously delivering a “burn” to Jennifer Lawrence and setting society’s understanding of the #MeToo movement back five years. Since the podcast aired, Lala has issued the following apology.
And like, super glad they’re on good terms. Good for J Law for definitively proving she’s a bigger person than you. But it wasn’t really the personal sparring I wanted an apology for here. I want an apology for discussing Weinstein’s predatory behavior as though it’s juicy gossip about the victim. I want an apology for saying that women should stand by men with a history of sexual abuse simply because they had a working relationship. You complain about Jennifer Lawrence not “standing by other women” by insulting you. But you, Lala, are the one who denigrated Weinstein’s victims en masse for the sake of an ill-conceived punch line, and then made a low blow about another woman’s weight. So please, sit back down with whatever feminist book you read the first 20 pages of, and FINISH IT. Think about how you can actually embody some of the girl-power ideas you’ve been screaming about all season—because this isn’t it.