Jeff Lewis breaks down after reunion fight with Ryan Brown, saying, “I lost my best friend”

At the start of the Flipping Out third-season reunion, Jeff Lewis joked that he was doing the reunion to make himself more favorable to Bravo so the show would get a fourth season, and said, “I want to lose some more friends.” That’s apparently what eventually happened, as Jeff later had an epic and atypically emotional fight with his friend and former partner Ryan Brown.

The reunion was half frivolous, half serious. The first half was far more fun, because there’s something about Andy Cohen that brings out the best and the bitchiest in Jeff Lewis, who is probably the funniest Bravo star next to Kathy Griffin. It’s so great to watch him smack down Andy Cohen; I think I’d watch Watch What Happens every Thursday night if Jeff Lewis co-hosted it. “Oh, you want me to answer that,” he said to one of Andy’s statements that wasn’t phrased as a question. After the fight with Ryan, when Andy said something inane about the show, Jeff said, “It’s a big fucking trainwreck. I mean, come on, where have you been for the last two hours?”

As Andy Cohen read a viewer question, Jeff rolled his eyes before Andy even got to the question, as in, “Must we suffer under this pretense of viewer questions just to relentlessly promote your still-awful web site that you think is good because people visit it even though it’s thoroughly awful?” Oh wait, that’s what I was thinking.

The first half had little that was new, but we did learn Jeff’s dating someone who “doesn’t want to have anything to do with the show.”

Later, though, Ryan and Jeff reunited for the first time in a few weeks–not months, as Andy Cohen kept insisting even as the two men said otherwise. They argued again over Jeff’s accusation that Ryan stole his business by creating a deceptive web site. Ryan said that watching the show surprised him, because “I had no idea the severity of the accusations and the length to which [Jeff] was going to try to … catch me in some kind of lie.”

Jeff accused Ryan of “professional identity theft” and “false advertising,” while Ryan accused him of “defamation of character.” Jeff admitted, “I don’t have any proof, but I really believe that the intention to take business was there. To repair our friendship, I would need some sort of sincere apology.”

A teary Ryan said, “I did what I thought was right, and I didn’t do anything wrong. So I can’t apologize for wrongdoing when I didn’t do anything wrong.” Jeff said, “I don’t see us moving past this. … We probably will not speak again after this. … You broke my heart; you wrecked me.” Jeff said that over the past few months, “I have been a weak, emotional little bitch, and I hate myself for it … I feel like I’m going through menopause or something.” Ryan said something similar: “What has happened to me over the past few months–you have no idea,” Ryan said. “I still harbor a lot of resentment” over the accusations.

Eventually, Jeff got mad, yelling, “You know you did this, and I don’t know how you fucking sleep at night. I’m over this manipulative bullshit,” Jeff said, and Ryan responded, “This the true Jeff Lewis coming out.” Andy Cohen ended the segment after it was clear there would be no resolution, and Ryan left. Jeff choked up talking to Jenni about the incident, saying, “I lost my best friend,” but quickly cheered up and said, “We’re going to turn that frown upside down.”

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.