How Real Housewives' Kandi Burruss Thinks Her New Show Will Compare to Lisa Vanderpump's Reality Spinoff Empire

screenshots of kandi burruss and lisa vanderpump
(Image credit: Bravo)

As its longest consecutive castmate, Kandi Burruss is the certified OG of the Real Housewives of Atlanta. But the OG is taking her OLG (Old Lady Gang) southern food restaurant to loftier pursuits. After NBCUniversal announced Burruss is getting her own spin-off – focusing on the personal and professional lives at the restaurant – the news reminded a lot folks about that other Real Housewives star's restaurant-based spinoff series. Not to be deterred, Burruss has no problem taking those easy Lisa Vanderpump comparisons to task.

Lisa Vanderpump left the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills in 2019, having established herself as the Queen of Reality TV Spinoffs. She was the matriarch of Vanderpump Rules since 2013, as well as all of its spinoffs, and she's also heading up the newer project Overserved with Lisa Vanderpump. But the concept of Vanderpump Rules – following the personal and professional lives of her various Los Angeles restaurant waitstaffs – is what sounds the most like Kandi Burruss’ new show, though not so much according to its star. She told ETOnline:

I think the similarity is that she has restaurants, I have restaurants, and we're both Housewives. OK, great. I think that's where the similarities stop. You definitely will get to know some of the people that actually work at the restaurant. Some people may or may not know, I do have some family members that you may not have gotten a chance to know from Real Housewives that do work at the restaurant, so you'll probably see some of them.

Outside of the plain labels of being Bravolebrities and restauranteurs, Kandi Burruss and Lisa Vanderpump couldn’t be more different in terms of personality and fashion style and plenty of other elements. Not to mention, we all know which of the two is more likely to get deep and personal into serious Real Housewives drama, both in and out of seasons, while the other is less impulsive about such things.

Kandi Burruss has made her mark in almost every arena of entertainment and beyond: as part of the 90s R&B girls’ group Xscape, through roles on Broadway, via the popular scripted series The Chi, through her many restaurants, and even with her popular sex toy business. All that said, she has only had brief success in branching out her Real Housewives of Atlanta fame on Bravo, despite serving up a variety of one-off spinoffs like The Kandi Factory, Kandi's Wedding, and Kandi's Ski Trip. Those didn't turn into runaway hits like Lisa Vanderpump’s Vanderpump Rules, which is currently filming Season 9, or even Kim Zolciak’s Don't Be Tardy, which just ended after eight seasons. However, this new series definitely looks like it'll aim to emulate that success by providing an East Coast/Down South twist on a tried-and-true idea.

So far as we know, Kandi Burruss' new show about her OLG restaurant will start Mama Joyce, Aunt Nora, Aunt Bertha, Burruss herself and her husband Todd Tucker. Per ETOnline, its premise revolves around the aspirations of her employees and also “how workplace slights bleed into their social lives.” (If that isn't the definition of Vanderpump Rules, I don't know what is.) It will reportedly film soon, per Burruss, and is expected to premiere this fall. The Real Housewives of Atlanta star did tease that there may be some spicy drama happening on the new spinoff, too, saying:

Listen, we have some spicy people at work at OLG. Some of them are way more interesting than me, so I cannot wait for you to get to meet them.

It will be curious to see how far executive producer and star Kandi Burruss will take things on the restaurant reality show, as well as how different it will actually be from Lisa Vanderpump’s shows. But if this past season of Real Housewives of Atlanta (showcasing Burruss’ dominatrix and bachelorette party skillsets) is any indication, then we all should be in for something big (yes, that’s a reference to Bolo).

And no, for anyone wondering, this new spinoff does not mean that Kandi Burruss is shaking things up further by leaving the Real Housewives of Atlanta, and thank goodness! There is already too much talk of Porsha Williams (who also has a spin-off coming down the pipeline) leaving the show. Burruss said she is “open” to continue showing her reality to viewers so long as Bravo wants her to.

So it sounds like Kandi Burruss is down to remain the OG of Real Housewives of Atlanta for some time then. And who knows? Maybe she'll once day unseat Lisa Vanderpump as the Queen of Bravo, though the latter will likely then throw that seat through a window.

Lauren Vanderveen
Movies and TV News Writer

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.