The Most Epic Reality Show Freak-Outs Of All Time

If there's one thing reality television can deliver, it's a whole lot of drama. Ever since this genre hit its stride in the early '00s, fans have witnessed more fights and freak-outs than you'd expect at a typical Thanksgiving family dinner. From Survivor to all those wacky Real Housewives, check out the biggest and most shocking reality show freak-outs that people still talk about today.

Tyra Banks' not-so-model behavior

If there's a definitive reality show freak-out, it has to be the one Tyra Banks pulled on contestant Tiffany Richardson during the fourth season of America's Next Top Model. The whole thing went down shortly after Richardson was eliminated from the competition. A clearly annoyed Banks scolded the young contestant for having a defeatist attitude and treating the competition "like a joke." Richardson then made the mistake of trying to defend herself.

Banks erupted. "Be quiet! Stop it!" she screamed at the top of her lungs. "I have never in my life yelled at a girl like this! When my mother yells like this it's because she loves me! I was rooting for you! We were all rooting for you! How dare you!"

Richardson quietly walked away, reaffirming what any model not named Naomi Campbell has already learned at some point in their career: never mess with Tyra.

New York vs. Pumkin

New York and Pumkin were public enemies on Season 1 of Flavor of Love, but nobody expected the dating contest to conclude with a spit to the face. The incident went down mere moments after Pumkin was eliminated from the show amid taunts and insults from New York. Pumkin launched a slobbery projectile in her competitor's face, and then the manicured claws came out as New York shoved Pumkin into a camera.

Even rapper Flavor Flav, dressed in a crown and robe, was shocked and appalled (if Flav thinks you're messed up, you know you've done wrong.) He ordered Pumkin to leave the set immediately. (Be forewarned: this freak-out contains uncensored foul language.)

'God Warrior'

On Trading Spouses, moms from two different families swap places for a period of time. Tensions typically run high, but the show reached peak freak-out status during its Season 2 premiere when the über-religious Marguerite Perrin was sent to live with a New Age family. Perrin had the mother of all meltdowns, accusing her surrogate family of being "dark sided" for practicing astrology and owning gargoyle statues. She got so mad, she ripped up her participation check, demanded the camera crew leave her house, and declared herself a "God warrior." "Get the hell out of my house!" she hollered, eyes bulging. "In Jesus' name I pray!" The whole thing was terrifying and hilarious. Alas, Trading Spouses was never quite the same after that.

'Who gon' check me, boo?'

The notoriously feisty Sheree Whitfield met her match in party planner Anthony Shorter during one of the most infamous episodes of The Real Housewives of Atlanta. Tensions were already running high over Whitfield's crazy demands for her Independence Day party, but when Whitfield found out Anthony had been talking to a poet without running it by her first (We told you her demands were crazy), fireworks ensued. The party planner told Whitfield to "check herself," and moments later, a catchphrase was born when an attitude-oozing Whitfield fired back, "Who gon' check me, boo?"

A reunion turns violent

If Whitfield's freak-out was The Real Housewives of Atlanta's funniest moment, Porsha Williams and Kenya Moore's brawl was by far the show's scariest. The incident occurred while filming the reunion special for Season 6. Williams and Moore had been taunting each other with insults, but Moore took things to the next level by using a megaphone—yes, a megaphone—to call Williams a "dumb hoe." Losing her cool, Williams sprang from her seat, grabbed Moore's hair, and dragged her to the ground, forcing host Andy Cohen and Bravo's security team to step in. Williams was subsequently arrested and charged with one count of simple battery. Later that year, she was demoted on the show over allegations of diva-like behavior.

Sue Hawk preys on the competition

Sometimes, a freak-out works best when you're cool, calm, and collected. Case in point: Survivor's Sue Hawk, who admits she's "not an openly nice person." Without so much as breaking a sweat, she unleashed an excoriating verbal takedown of her fellow contestants, particularly eventual runner-up Kelly Wiglesworth.

Hawk's speech was equal parts cutting and over-the-top; filled with incredible one-liners that live on in reality-show infamy. "If I were ever [to] pass you along in life again and you were laying there dying of thirst, I would not give you a drink of water," Hawk told Wiglesworth. "I would let the vultures take you and do whatever they want with you, with no ill regrets." Wait a second, why didn't she win?

Tables are turned (and flipped)

By the end of Season 1 of the The Real Housewives of New Jersey, the cast had pretty much had it with Danielle Staub and wanted answers about her allegedly shady past. Teresa Giudice used her own dinner party to confront Staub face-to-face. During the dramatic encounter, Staub lost her cool on Giudice, telling her to "pay attention." Those two little words sent Giudice into a blind rage. She flipped a table and accused Staub of being a "prostitution whore," among other things. Many of Giudice's subsequent insults were hard to make out without the help of subtitles, but by then, it didn't matter. The Jersey girl had already earned herself a permanent place in the reality TV hall of shame.

The gloves (and leg) come off

During Season 5 of The Real Housewives of New York City, tensions flared after Aviva Drescher bailed on a bunch of girls' trips because of supposed health problems. The rest of the ladies took it upon themselves to confront Drescher while dining in a fancy New York City restaurant. They accused her of lying about her health and of acting dramatic and fake. Drescher's response: she removed her prosthetic leg and slammed it on the table. "The only thing that is artificial or fake about me," she declared, "is this!" Drescher proceeded to throw her leg on the floor of the dining room and offered to crawl home. Drescher was reportedly fired from the show a few months later.

A 'superstar' gets turned down

Getting rejected is never easy. Just ask American Idol wannabe Rhonetta Johnson. From the moment she appeared on screen, it was obvious the North Carolina native was never going to make it past the judges. Any amateur who thinks they're on par with Janet Jackson or Jennifer Lopez is in dire need of a reality check, and Johnson got exactly that when she strutted into the audition with more confidence than Kanye West. The panel ripped her songs to shreds and, in a matter of minutes, Johnson was showed the door.

At that point, most contestants simply cry or declare they'll rise from the ashes next season. Johnson, however, took things about 50 steps too far as she launched into a nasty and comical rant that was primarily directed at judge Paula Abdul. By the end of it, Johnson looked less like she was auditioning for Idol and more like she was trying out for a reality show on VH1. Considering how incredibly hilarious she was in those few minutes, we're kind of bummed she never got her own spin-off.