Dr. Terry Dubrow and Dr. Paul Nassif are shining up their respective scalpels for season 8 of Botched. And with that, the E! surgical dream team will be the first to tell you it’s filled with their most challenging and complex cases to date.
“This is an advanced version of Botched,” Dubrow said. “We take on cases that we may have passed on in the past because our skills have allowed us to add new challenges…We have a lot more complications this season than before. There are going to be bruises and some problems. But we got through it.”
From a tummy tuck gone wrong to a dog bite victim who lost the entire tip of their nose, patients have entrusted the two to help heal past trauma and bad plastic surgery to change their lives. We scheduled a visit with Dubrow and Nassif to talk about what’s to come.
How would you describe your working relationship after all these years?
Dr. Terry Dubrow: It was always good. At first, I think he didn’t like how unplugged I could be on TV as a doctor. Now he has gotten used to it. You’re a lot more relaxed.
Dr. Paul Nassif: I was uptight in the beginning because I just came off [Real Housewives of Beverly Hills]. Of course, we had our issues there and that ended badly. When I was first on this show, I was very buttoned-up and scared to do anything. I was prim and proper. He is funny. I must tell you he is a natural comedian. When he is insulting me, I’ll start laughing and we’ll be looking at each other and laughing for about five minutes straight. Everyone filming is like, “What the hell?” I’ve become more relaxed, but we are both professional with our patients and when we’re doing these surgeries, high risk especially. This season the tissue of these patients is really bad and they fall apart…When we watch ourselves season after season, it’s something we would say, “Yeah I would never have done that three or four years ago.”
During the initial consultations, you also create a safe space for potential patients. They open up in front of you and cameras, which I’m sure isn’t easy.
Terry: We don’t judge them. When you’ve had too much plastic surgery or complications and see a plastic surgeon to help you, sometimes that plastic surgeon will judge you…We look at them through the lens of people who are in this helpless situation and need help. We provide an open and loving environment to share their story. We care about them very much. It’s a give-and-take. We tell them that this could and probably will go backward before it goes forward. We might have to induce some harm, take some things apart and take things down to be set up to help them. It may take two or three surgeries. It’s a journey.
What would you say are some of your most challenging cases this season? Even that first episode has a very involved one with Mikeal who has endured so many surgeries. You help with her graft and work to get a belly button back.
Terry: Some of the tissue is so damaged you know it was going to die when you open the patient up. But you have to go through that process in order to set yourself up for success. You ask, “Are you willing to go backward before we go forward?”
Paul: The things that we have seen. You wouldn’t expect to see this patient walking around. One patient since childhood had a tumor growing on her face. It became so long on her cheek and was hanging down. When she would try to have it fixed at the university she was living near in Mexico, it bled so much that they stopped. We were able to go in and reconstruct this patient. To me the biggest transformation I’ve had on this show in all these seasons, and there are complications. It’s hard emotionally and physically. We find out this season that there are so many doctors who have seen complications and doctors say, “You know what? I don’t want to see you anymore.” We’re seeing it more and more…I’m more of the tough one with the patient….He is sweet and wonderful and all that with the patients. We have to do this kind of give-and-take relationship.
How do you feel this show has helped when it comes to providing a realistic look at plastic surgery rather than what we may see on social media?
Terry: Instagram is so unrealistic and shows people with their filters. An unrealistic depiction of what a person’s life is really like. In many ways, people look so good they expect to come into our office after being botched and want this to be this magical transformation. It isn’t like that in the real world when you put them on an operating table and have to open them up. We don’t glorify plastic surgery
Paul: One thing this has done from day one is provided a wonderful education to patients on what to do and what not to do. One thing we’ve been told by our peers is we have done a good job. I feel even though it’s a show and sometimes funny and nutty, at the same point, it’s a cautionary tale and educational. We are helping patients across the world.
What do you want to see next for the show?
Terry: We did a show called Botched By Nature several seasons ago which was really fun where we went to see patients in their home environment and got to know them. I’d love to see us take that to another level combined with this show. Go to another country and help people who have zero access to plastic surgery. Imagine going to India or Africa and a village, I think we can do some really good work.
Paul: Imagine the two of us in another country doing what we do. It would be fun to see.
Terry: As long as we aren’t in a hotel room.
Terry: I don’t know why they haven’t asked [Terry] to be on Dancing with the Stars yet. This guy can dance. It would be hilarious to see him all over the place on that show.
Botched season 8 premiere, August 3, 10/9c, E!