Did Mike Fleiss just put a Mortal Kombat-style finishing move on the biggest spoiler in the history of reality TV? It’s not entirely clear what is going on just yet, but no matter what it is, the creator of “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” seems to believe that he has scored himself a rather impressive victory.
In a series of rather detailed (and at times almost mad scientist-like) posts on his Twitter account Monday — less than 24 hours after Reality Steve supposedly posted the results of Monday night’s episode featuring Emily Maynard’s final three — Fleiss had the following to say:
“Exterminator now has all the bug spray he needs. See ya…”
“Caught with a smoking gun… Next time, you should just shove the barrel in your mouth! Boom!!!”
“You just made my day, punk!!!”
“The parasite has been exterminated!!!”
“Where’d u go, buddy?”
Considering that Fleiss has referred to Reality Steve as a parasite at times in the past over him spoiling many of the show’s past seasons — and thus in his mind capitalizing on the show for money while at the same time hurting its buzz — it’s pretty clear who he is talking about here. The two have already fought it out (at least through their lawyers) once already earlier this year, with Steve (whose real name is Steve Carbone) promising that he would not attempt to extract spoilers from anyone on or associated with “The Bachelor” franchise. We’re not sure why exactly Fleiss feels he has won now, but our guess is that he believes that Steve somehow violated the terms of the agreement that was signed at the end of the lawsuit.
In one of his final posts, Fleiss alluded to what is in many ways the primary reason why he wants Steve gone from the internet — mostly so that he can try to ensure that his employees all are able to provide for their families without worrying that someone is going to exploit their product:
“The fine folks that work on the show have families, kids, responsibilities. I care about them more than some pitiful parasite…”
From an ethical standpoint, we’ve never been particularly huge fans of anyone ruining television for anyone else — but so long as it was confined to one site, it wasn’t as though anyone would have to look at it. (Check out our full debate on this subject here.) The problem is that Steve has become a victim of his own success — every time he posts a spoiler, a million websites looking to piggyback on his traffic publish the same story. We’ve never spoiled a show on this page, and we won’t for the sole reason that there should be a safe refuge for fans who want to be surprised. Nobody should have a show ruined for them against their will.
Do you have any idea what Fleiss is talking about, and do you think this back-and-forth right now about spoilers and “parasites” is taking attention away from where it should be in the show?