“The irony of it all: Bethenny cashing in ads as she ‘exposes Bravo exploits’ and gives Rachel ‘a voice,’” Cooke, 41, commented on a post from Two Judgey Girls on Instagram on Thursday, August 17. “She literally has more ad spots than any other podcast I’ve ever listened to. Rachel won’t see a dime lol. I bet she had to pay her way to fly to B just to record this. If this was a true PSA it would be ad free.”
During her three-part podcast appearance, Leviss, 28, opened up to Frankel, 52, for the first time since she completed mental health treatment at a center in Arizona. Leviss explained that she chose to go on Frankel’s podcast because she’s using “her case as an example of exploitation” in the world of reality TV. (Frankel has also been outspoken about how reality TV stars don’t get royalties.)
“[The backlash] seemed disproportionate to me,” Frankel told Leviss of the commentary surrounding the SURver’s months-long affair with Tom Sandoval. “I was watching clips on social media and hearing about this Scandoval — that had a name, was being marketed and it was being pumped through the PR machine. And I did say … ‘Everybody’s gonna be more well known than they were before because of this.’ And my mind was, ‘They’re on a reality show. It’s set in a bar, is what I think. It’s fueled by alcohol and partying and multiple affairs. So what respectfully, what the hell is the big deal that everyone’s talking about?’ … And I said your name just as an example of what I imagined to be somebody who had been exploited. And for the rest of your life, that content will be out there without compensation.”
Leviss also shared that the Bravo network has been “laughing” and “running to the bank” to profit off of the success of the show in light of the scandal.
“I haven’t seen a single penny. … It’s not fair. … And I feel like I’ve been portrayed as the ultimate villain,” Leviss explained. “My mistakes that I’ve made on camera live on forever. And you mentioned something about the addiction of doing reality TV and the way and the way that they always dangle that carrot in front of you, like, ‘Well, you need to tell your side of the story otherwise it’s gonna be written for you.’ And that’s terrifying. So I almost went back, I know just because of that.”
Frankel went on to say that Leviss deserved a bigger paycheck after her affair brought the network so much more success.
“As people who are partially produced … Let’s just say that it’s real in a very unreal circumstance. So now you have one of the three characters that can’t even afford to pay for your treatment that you just went through,” Frankel said. “Because it’s my understanding that you get paid in a year less than my interns get paid.”