Chef Mila Kolomeitseva, star of Bravo’s hit reality series Below Deck, recently came under heavy criticism from her co-stars and fans of the show after she made a series of homophobic remarks on an earlier episode. The controversial comments left many of her fellow cast-mates outraged, with many sharing their disgust on social media.
“I don’t want to see a man kissing a man in front of me,” Chef Mila was caught on camera saying in the car on the way to the crew’s first night out. “In your home, you guys can do whatever you want. I don’t want my son to be growing up and seeing two men kissing each other and thinking this is normal because this is not f–king normal!” She also added that she “loved Putin” because he doesn’t allow gay pride marches in Russia, before comparing homosexuality to bestiality, asking, “Why is f–king an animal is not normal? But how can a man f–k a man?”. You can watch the clip below.
Her co-stars did not take kindly to the comments, with lead deckhand Travis Michalzik calling Mila a “complete oxygen thief” and telling her to “sit on the opposite end of this f–king table from me.” He made sure to keep his distance from Mila for the remainder of the evening.
After she joked that she must have “hit a nerve” with him, Michalzik replied “Maybe I’ve been with men. You don’t know that. Maybe my friends are them,” he tells her. He goes on to say, “Homosexual is absolutely natural, so f–k you. Your opinion on gays shows your opinion on humanity which is fucking terrible and I don’t support it.”
Michalzik wasn’t the only crew member to respond to her comments. Aesha Scott and Jack Stirrup called Mila a homophobe, while Deckhand Colin Macy-O’Toole pointed out the irony in her comment, writing on Twitter: “And on that note, happy pride month everyone!”
Scott, who was sitting next to Michalzik in the van tweeted her thoughts after the episode aired, writing “Any person in the world can kiss any other person in the world… please know that homophobia is not ANYONES position in the show!!!!”
Stew Anastasia Surmava was also angry. “Just because you were raised a certain way that does not mean you have to make those opinions your own. Milas intolerance is unacceptable. Also f**k you Putin.”
Captain Sandy Yawn, who is in a committed relationship with her girlfriend Leah Shafer and who recently went public with their relationship, addressed Mila’s comments during a recent interview with TooFab. After she and Shafer went public with their relationship, Shafer received some major blowback from fans, but Yawn wasn’t going to let Mila’s controversial comment affect her in any way.
“I heard it through chatter. Like, the crew don’t run to me and say, ‘Did you hear what happened?!’ They’re not like that. They basically keep it [to themselves],” she said of learning about the chef’s remarks. “But someone mentioned it, and I just thought, ‘Wow.’”
The Below Deck Med boss added, “So that’s her opinion. That doesn’t reflect [me]. She can have her opinion. I don’t really care. Doesn’t reflect on me. It reflects on her. So when people take it personal, they should probably look at themselves and not point the finger at the person who said it. Doesn’t bother me! That’s her thing she has to deal with. Not mine.”
Chief Stew Hannah Ferrier was also upset, telling Us Weekly last week that Mila is “definitely not someone I would choose to spend my personal time with, to say the least. I struggle a lot because one of my best friends in Australia is gay and Muslim. I’ve seen for the last 13 years that it’s a very difficult path to go down. It’s not really a choice. It is what it is. I don’t condone or believe her views at all. At the same time, she was brought up very differently to you and I, it’s a fine line.”
Mila’s comments also caught the attention of longtime Bravo viewer and celeb Chrissy Teigen, who weighed in on the controversy after the second episode aired via Twitter: “Wowwwww I was hesitant to talk s–t about the chef’s cooking on Below Deck because I didn’t wanna be a jerkhole but then it got to the end and turns out she is also a terrible person.”
Below Deck Mediterranean airs Monday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.