The creator of “The Bachelor” came under fire for what many called out as a sexist shot at ABC’s Kelly Ripa when she aired her feelings about the hit television series.
Ellen Pompeo, star of the long-running ABC series “Grey’s Anatomy,” came to Ripa’s defense after her criticism of “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” made her the target of tweets from the creator and a host of the shows.
(Video: YouTube/ET Canada)
Pompeo chided Mike Fleiss and Chris Harrison in a Twitter rebuke saying “we don’t attack successful women on our network” after their tweets on Ripa’s on-air comments.
The “Live with Kelly and Ryan” co-host reacted negatively when it was announced that a contestant in the 23rd season of “The Bachelor” was scheduled as a guest later in the week.
“You guys know how I feel about the show — it disgusts me,” Ripa said of “The Bachelorette,” after co-host Ryan Seacrest announced that Hannah Brown, the newest Bachelorette who was ultimately not chosen by the star, Colton Underwood.
“I couldn’t stand the idea of 25 exceptional women fighting over one ordinary fella, in my opinion,” Ripa said.
Ripa also slammed “The Bachelor” as a “gross, gross show,” disagreeing with the whole idea of a dating competition and prompting a reaction from Fleiss, the “Bachelor/Bachelorette” creator and Harrison, the host.
“Easy, @KellyRipa … #TheBachelor franchise pays your salary!” Fleiss tweeted.
— Mike Fleiss (@fleissmeister) May 15, 2019
Harrison tweeted a message to fans of the shows, warning that Ripa “is coming after you and your ‘disgusting’ Monday night habit.”
— Chris Harrison (@chrisbharrison) May 15, 2019
Pompeo fired back at the 55-year-old Fleiss, schooling him in a tweet where she added: “Don’t get me started on your show cuz I’m a savage.”
Okay @fleissmeister… that’s some handle bro! Your show does NOT pay @KellyRipa salary. Also we don’t attack successful women on our network and men certainly cannot take credit for their success. Don’t get me started on your show cuz I’m a savage…. #bachelorsoooowhite
— Ellen Pompeo (@EllenPompeo) May 16, 2019
She later commented that she had to “jump back in the ring for my girl.”
— Ellen Pompeo (@EllenPompeo) May 16, 2019
“I’m not a fan of ‘The Bachelor’ or ‘The Bachelorette’ either,” television show host Wendy Williams said. “It’s so stupid, women parading themselves around. It depends on who you are, what you want to do with your life. For me, it’s degrading.”
“While I don’t care for beauty pageants and shows like ‘The Bachelor’ and ‘The Bachelorette’ where people do that, these days the contestants I believe are a little bit smarter and they end up, well, doing anything that they want. They use us for the ratings,” Williams said Friday on “The Wendy Williams Show.”
While she noted that the shows are really just “entertainment,” Williams also believed Fleiss was not right to attack Ripa who has co-hosted “Live” since 2001.
“Well, if memory serves me, Kelly Ripa has been at ABC … longer than The Bachelor‘s been on. She jumped into an already successful show, she continued to keep it an already successful show, so if anybody’s paying anybody’s salary, just saying,” she said.
A show insider told People that “fear of rejection” may have prompted Fleiss and Harrison to criticize Ripa.
“Do these guys really want to bring attention to the fact that people should stop and look more closely at the completely outdated misogynistic nature of this show and its offensive premise of demeaning its participants?” the source asked.
“They can’t handle lighthearted criticism from a successful woman who has been on TV longer than their contestants have been alive,” the source added. “Kelly’s time at Live predates these shows by years, so if anything, her success in syndication and promotion of these shows pays their salaries.”
Brown, who appeared on “Live” as scheduled, said she wasn’t offended by Ripa’s views.
“I don’t take it personally at all,” she said. “We can agree to disagree.”
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