Hell hath no fury like Bachelor Nation scorned.
After Kelly Ripa called the dating series "gross" and "creepy" on Live With Kelly and Ryan, the love hunt's outspoken creator Mike Fleiss took aim. "Easy, @kellyripa ... #TheBachelor franchise pays your salary!" he tweeted last night, referring to their shared network ABC.
Her remarks even put a thorn in Chris Harrison's side. "Look out #BachelorNation," he posted on Twitter. "@KellyRipa is coming after you and your 'disgusting' Monday night habit."
The dramatic feud began yesterday when her co-host Ryan Seacrest announced that the new Bachelorette would be stopping by their talk show later this week. Ripa, for her part, assumed that meant Colton Underwood's girlfriend Cassie Randolph—and not Hannah Brown, the actual star of season 15.
"Oh, it's an entirely different person?" she quipped. "You know how I feel about this show. It disgusts me. I thought that I was disgusted because I couldn't stand the idea of 25 exceptional women fighting over one, ordinary fella, in my opinion. You know how I feel ladies! We are too special to be arguing over a guy."
Her charge caused a cheer from the audience. But, "having said that," she continued with a laugh, "all you women watch that gross, gross show."
As it turns out, the All My Children alum, wed to Mark Consuelos, once rooted for female-led spin-off. After The Bachelor first premiered, "I was like, 'How come they don't have a woman with men fighting over her? How come they don't do that show?'" she recalled to Seacrest. But, ultimately, The Bachelorette, which debuted in 2003, didn't earn her rose.
"I found that show just as creepy but in a completely different way," she added. "I was like, ‘Ew, eww, ewww.'"
But more drama awaits. After all, she still has to sit down with Ripa this week. As the host joked, "I can't wait to talk her out of it!"
The Bachelorette airs on Monday at 8 p.m. EST.