On season 16 of Real Housewives of Orange County, Heather Dubrow was accused of controlling the cast, forcing her reign as the new queen of O.C.

Many fans, however, hope the return of Tamra Judge will reestablish the show’s former glory, which was lacking in the season (as shown by the ratings).

On an episode of The Rick & Kelly Show podcast, Kelly Dodd said a former producer and showrunner, Thomas Kelly, sent her a message about Heather. She alleged Thomas was told Heather “gets her due this season.” Kelly indicated that she herself would not stay on the show if she were in Heather’s shoes.

“I go, ‘Stupid, I’m so glad I’m out of this. Why would Heather want to be subjected to this nonsense? If I was that rich, I would be like why? She’s a joke.’ And he goes, ‘Seriously, you are so right. She needs the fame and attention. It’s an illness for her,’” stated Kelly, via Heavy.

Kelly then revealed a text exchange with Vicki Gunvalson, who appears in the season.

“I text this to Vicki and I said to Vicki, ‘What’s up, Thomas Kelly sent me this.’ And this was Vicki’s response to me: ‘Yeah, it’s very sad to me. Regardless if you like [Heather] or not. I saw it first-hand. And it makes me sick. You and I have both gone through it in the past. If I had her money, there is no way I would subject myself to that abuse,’” Kelly said.

Though Kelly expressed empathy for Heather, she also claimed the 53-year-old is “probably the worst human being.”

“Listen, Vicki and I know what it’s like to be beat up on, we know what it’s like to be abused, we know what it’s like for people to be – I was attacked, she was attacked. It’s not fun. It’s a horrible, horrible feeling. It’s the worst feeling ever,” Kelly explained.

In an October episode of Tamra Judge’s Two Ts In A Pod podcast, castmate Gina Kirschenheiter indicated that season 17 was difficult for Heather.

“I think actually it’s been hard for Heather this year because I feel like she’s been trying to kind of find her place, figure it out and I feel like it’s been a little tough,” Gina shared, via Heavy.

Tamra added, “I mean I can’t give it away but sometimes people need to take accountability for their actions and their words and not blame other people.”

The Real Housewives of Orange County season 17 is expected to air in early 2023 on Bravo.