In a startling revelation that has captivated audiences, Tom Sandoval, a central figure in the popular Bravo reality series 'Vanderpump Rules', was embroiled in a scandal that shook the very foundations of his nine-year relationship with co-star Ariana Madix.
Known as the 'Scandoval', this saga has added a dramatic twist to the show, leading to speculation about its potential orchestration for ratings. Sandoval's affair with fellow 'Vanderpump Rules' cast member Raquel Leviss emerged into the public eye under shocking circumstances.
The discovery was made through intimate videos of Leviss found on Sandoval's phone, effectively ending his long-term relationship with Madix. This scandal erupted in March last year, coinciding with a significant boost in the show’s ratings, which had been perceived as dwindling.
Sandoval: Calculated Affair?
The plot thickens as Leviss, absent from the show's latest season, openly questioned the authenticity of the affair on her podcast, 'Rachel Goes Rogue' She expressed doubts about whether Sandoval had deliberately engineered the scandal.
“Did Tom mastermind this?” Leviss queried, highlighting Sandoval's reputation for being strategically involved in the show's production. She further noted his reliance on the show for income and career longevity, especially as he steps into his 40s.
Leviss, 29, also disclosed that Sandoval often discussed with her how their relationship might unfold in future episodes, hinting at a deliberate approach to their affair. “I think he had his motivation behind it that really escalated the situation,” she speculated, pondering if the dynamics would have been different outside the realm of reality TV.
This notion of a contrived affair for the sake of television drama was given credence by the show’s producer, Alex Baskin, in an interview with Deadline in August 2023. Baskin implied that 'Scandoval' was instrumental in reviving interest in 'Vanderpump Rules', a series struggling to maintain its viewer base.