Well, it is about the dog, but also so much more, according to the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills cast. The RHOBH ladies promise ET that season nine will start with with the dog drama (a.k.a., Dorit Kemsley adopting “Lucy Lucy Apple Juicy” from Vanderpump Dogs, handing the dog off to another home and the dog winding up at a shelter, much to the dismay of Lisa Vanderpump… and the story somehow landing in a series of blogs) and then go places no one ever expected. ET spoke with the entire cast at their premiere party at Gracias Madre in Los Angeles.
“It's two seasons in one, by the way,” Lisa Rinna teases, with a sigh. “It's two seasons in one [and] it's gonna blow your f**king mind is what it's gonna do!”
“It's a very long season, too, so it's jammed packed,” Dorit spills. “There's also a lot of fun, there's a lot of new friendships, there's a lot of things that happen this season.”
“It's also about people coming together and really developing friendships, which I think is very cool,” Erika Girardi says. “And you'll see some friendships break in a way that you didn't think they would.”
“There's so many ups and downs!” Teddi Mellencamp says. “It's unbelievable. Complete difference from last year.”
Teddi admits she got in the mix a bit more this season because she felt more comfortable. She promises fans will see more Teddi this year, but not a “different Teddi” than on season eight, her first.
“The changes are so extreme, you just don't know what to expect,” she adds. “And it's just kind of whap, whap, whap, one thing after another. I can only say there's so much of a difference between last year and this year, that's what surprised me the most.”
“It surprised me every day,” Kyle Richards shares. “I was actually surprised every single day... I honestly don't have any words [to describe it], ‘cause every day I was like, I didn't know what was gonna happen next and it doesn't feel good to live life like that.”
Now, it’s unclear what the drama is after the dog stuff blows up. We do know that Vanderpump essentially stopped filming with her co-stars part-way through the season, though continued to film on her own. She tells ET her new tagline (“You can stab me in the back, but whilst you’re there, kiss my a**”) is directed at her entire cast.
'RHOBH': Kyle Richards and Dorit Kemsley Are Open to Fixing Things With Lisa Vanderpump (Exclusive)
“It’s just how I was feeling,” Vanderpump admits. “You know, I think the taglines reflect your feelings of the season. So, that's what I wanted to say. And of course, sometimes Bravo say, 'Oh. You sure about that?' Yes, I'm really sure.”
Erika says her observation from season six, that Vanderpump is a “sniper from the side,” still stands in season nine.
“I said it the first time,” she doubles down. “I already said what I have to say, everyone else can pick up where I left off.”
Fans watched as Vanderpump and her husband, Ken Todd, threw Kyle out of their home in a flash-forward that kicked off the season, a seemingly friendship-ending fight.
“It's very upsetting,” Kyle laments. “It was upsetting in the moment. It's upsetting to watch. My husband still has not seen that, so it's very difficult. I care about both Lisa and Ken and I never imagined that it would get to that point and it's unfortunate.”
“Personally, it was a very difficult time in my life, especially around the beginning of filming,” Vanderpump shares. “So, I've chosen not to go back to that space, you know, and not to watch it.”
Still, Kyle says she hopes, one day, to reconcile with her once-close friend, but admits the ball is in Lisa's court.
“Well, it would be nice if you could see the person,” she admits, with a laugh.
“You know, I'm an easy, easy girl to repair things with,” Dorit shares, in agreement. “It just takes an apology or a conversation that's true and honest and real, and two people that want to. You know? And I'm always up for trying to repair something, always … I mean, I'm not exactly calling her to do it, but you have to also tune in and see the season, because there's a lot that happened. And I think having this conversation now, it's difficult to answer those questions when you haven't seen it.”
'RHOBH' Cast Answers Lisa Vanderpump's No. 1 Question About Season 9 (Exclusive)
Dorit says the truth will come out episode by episode, and admits she didn’t acknowledge the various stories that spilled out into the blogs and fan sites while filming -- from the dog to questions over her and husband, PK’s, finances -- because she wanted the viewers to watch and judge everything for themselves.
“It's not really fair for us to play it out in the press, because ultimately you have to watch it,” she says. “It's a reality show, so you will see what really happened and I encourage the audience to tune in and see the real story and not, you know, someone’s agenda or something self-serving. Playing it out in the press, you know, everything is always a bit inflated, and it's one sided.”
As for what else we know we can expect on season nine: more time with Erika’s husband, Tom, and lots of time with new housewife Denise Richards and her boyfriend-turned-fiance-turned-husband, Aaron Phypers. Yes, the couple got engaged and married all in the first months of filming the season!
“It's complicated,” Denise says of their love story. “We met at his center ... I was a client.”
“We mixed business with pleasure,” Aaron adds.
As for how she’d sum up her first season as a housewife, Denise calls it “fun.”
“The timing was right and if I'm gonna do a show like this, I would want to be my true authentic self and be really honest and open,” she says. “And I'm in a great place to do that and so I thought, why not?”