'Bar Rescue' Star Jon Taffer Has One Word to Describe New Episodes of Paramount Network Series (Exclusive)

Jon Taffer has saved hundreds of bars and restaurants in his hit series Bar Rescue. And after being on hiatus for eight months, new episodes of Season 8 will premiere on the Paramount Network on Sunday at 10 p.m. ET. PopCulture.com spoke exclusively to Taffer who had one word to describe the new episodes. 

"I can give you one word and that would be 'intense,'" Taffer exclusively told PopCulture. "Last season, we had the pandemic, pretty valid excuse, right? Businesses weren't doing well, people weren't out, government closures, all that kind of stuff. Pretty darn valid. This year, there's no more excuses. We have inflation, it's hard to find employees, but operators need to be better than ever before to overcome these things. So they got to up their game."

"So this year, no excuses, buddy. It's gloves out. We're fighting pretty hard and a lot of emotion this year. You're going to see me tear up a couple of times. A couple of family houses are on the line. College education funds are on the line. Parents' retirement funds. One owner blew $400,000 of his parents' retirement. Can you believe it? Left his parents broke. So these are powerful, emotional stories, and that's what you're going to see this season is an intense and emotional season."

In the new episodes, Taffer travels to cities in California, Colorado, North Carolina and Idaho. And a familiar face returns as television personality Maria Menounos teams up with Taffer to whip the bars in shape. "Maria's one of my best friends," Taffer explained. "So Maria and her husband, Kevin, are really good friends. So in the beginning, I twisted her arm to come on the show. She got sick from the food that she ate. She drank a strawberry mixer that had been dated two years earlier, and she said, laughingly, at the end of the show, 'This destroyed our friendship. I'm never talking to you again.' Kidding, of course."

"Then the next season, I twisted her arm, got her to do it again. Now she's done, I think, four or five episodes and she's become a great asset to the show. But it all started with our friendship and my desire to have her come be on set. But this is a pretty intense one. There's a couple of wrestlers on board with them as well this episode. So you're going to see Maria at her best."

Taffer also mentioned the one big mistake he sees with the bars in the upcoming episodes. "I think probably the most common mistake I see across all of them, and that's a great question, is accountability," he revealed. "I've done about 240 episodes, and it's remarkable to me. Every time when I say, 'Why are you failing?' Never once have they said, 'I'm failing because of me or the choices that I made.' It's always somebody else's fault or something else's fault. They never own their failure. And I found if we own our failure, that's when we find success. That's when we grow."