On January 7, Netflix debuted Hype House, a reality series tackling the success and disillusionment of the most-followed teens and 20-somethings on social media. It showed the L.A.–based creators cohabiting, forging brand partnerships, and dealing with online haters. But it didn’t show the whole story. Instead, that story is, of course, unfolding across social media. Nearly two weeks after the show’s premiere, one of its lead stars, 18-year-old influencer Jack Wright, posted a 17-minute-long YouTube video detailing sexual assault he allegedly experienced from Sienna Mae Gomez, also 18, and a former friend and fellow TikTok star. He accused Gomez, who was originally slated to appear in the show, of nonconsensual touching while he was incapacitated, among other claims.
After Wright’s video, Gomez lost upwards of 300,000 followers on TikTok, denting her massive current TikTok following of 14.1 million. Weeks later, Gomez responded to the allegations in a lengthy Medium essay titled “Sienna Mae Gomez: Reflections from an 18-Year-Old Me.” The allegations, most of which she denies, are presumably the reason for her notable absence on the TV series. But what, exactly, happened between these two megafamous influencers?
The allegations have spurred conversations about the backlash survivors receive when coming forward and the darker aspects of teenage internet fame. The accusations — spanning from May 2021 to now — received an outpour of attention from the media and from Wright and Gomez’s followers. Wright addressed the issue on social media in June, right after Gomez denied the allegations in the first of two YouTube videos published that month. Since then, Wright, his friends, and his family members have come forward with more claims of sexual assault by Gomez.
In Gomez’s Medium response, she denied any nonconsensual sexual contact.
In a statement to NBC News published on January 22, Gomez’s representative referred to Wright’s video as a “reframing of their history” and reiterated Gomez’s claims where she “unequivocally” denied the allegations. He also stated that there was no ongoing police investigation. Below, we explain the Hype House controversy and detail Wright’s allegations and Gomez’s response.
How did Sienna Mae Gomez and Jack Wright meet?
Gomez rose to internet fame at 16 when her first TikTok went viral. She said she asked Wright’s twin brother James to accompany her to an interview, but he was unavailable, so she took Jack with her instead. Jack Wright — who currently has 9.6 million TikTok followers — gained internet popularity in high school before joining the Hype House collective in December 2019 as one of its original members. They met in high school but weren’t close until befriending each other in L.A., where Wright and Gomez began posting content in October 2020 that stoked speculation that they were dating.
Gomez purportedly harbored romantic feelings toward Wright throughout this period, but Wright maintained that their relationship never progressed past the platonic outside of their social-media content.
What are Jack Wright’s allegations against Sienna Mae Gomez?
The sexual-assault allegations were first shared on May 30, 2021, when content creator Mason Rizzo posted a statement claiming Gomez was physically and verbally abusive toward Wright. James Wright retweeted Rizzo’s allegations in a now-deleted quote tweet, adding, “This is why ‘I couldn’t just let it go and stay out of it.’” Wright then released a statement on his Instagram on June 2, 2021, where he addressed the initial claims. “Mason and James’ only intention was to protect me,” he wrote. “I truly encourage my childhood friend Sienna to get the support and help she needs.”
On June 3, TikToker Lachlan Hannemann, @naughtytaimua, posted a now-deleted video from November 30, 2020, claiming to have witnessed an incident of sexual misconduct between Gomez and Wright. Wright himself shared multiple allegations in his recent YouTube video.
“I don’t know if she’ll ever be sorry,” Wright added in his video. “I don’t know if she’ll ever learn from what she did. But I just don’t want her to do this to other people.”
How did Sienna Mae Gomez respond to the allegations?
Gomez wrote in her Medium piece that she was “devastated that he made me sound crazy” and accused Wright of “painting me into the ‘loud’, ‘crazy’, ‘overly sexualized’ stereotype that people try to use on young, especially, Latina women.” She reiterated her strong feelings for Jack, and said that they culminated in shows of physical affection that might have made him uncomfortable. Gomez wrote that the highly publicized dating rumors between her and Wright caused her to develop unrequited feelings. “My only intention was to love him and tell him he mattered,” Gomez wrote. “It’s a mistake I’ll never make again.”
On June 1, Gomez posted the first of two controversial YouTube videos titled “addressing false allegations,” where she denied any wrongdoing toward Wright. In her Medium piece, Gomez apologized to sexual-assault survivors “who I offended with my ignorance” in the “hastily” made videos.
Addressing the allegations that she assaulted him, Gomez denied them and claimed, “All Jack and I ever did was kiss. I have never seen, felt or touched him naked.”
“There is a counterpoint for every point Jack made in his video,” Gomez wrote. “But I’m not going to do that.”
Sienna Mae Gomez addressed Wright’s allegations on the BFFs podcast, hosted by Barstool founder Dave Portnoy, who himself has been accused of sexual assault in the past. She Zoomed in from the same room as her lawyer, who was also present on the call, along with a forensics expert. “There has been no police report filed,” Gomez’s lawyer told Portnoy. “There has been no police investigation. There’s been no civil complaint filed.” The lawyer added, “Honestly, at the end of the day, this is all just a video online.” She also asserted that they were considering their legal options, including defamation suits against multiple people. Her forensics expert fielded questions about Hannemann’s video, claiming it was not credible due to its 2.5-second length and editing.
Did Netflix cut Sienna Mae from Hype House due to Jack Wright’s accusations?
Gomez was slated to be one of the main influencers featured on the show, with promo photos for the show presenting her alongside Thomas Petrou, Nikita Dragun, and Chase Hudson, among others. In her Medium piece, Gomez claimed that the producers put a lot of pressure on her and Wright to categorize their relationship. Gomez claimed that her relationship with Wright was supposed to be one of the main story lines in Hype House, but the allegations overshadowed an otherwise straightforward portrait of digital fame. She said her team requested that her presence be removed from any Hype House episodes because “they knew people online would pick apart every interaction between us.”
“Netflix did not want to be liable for my mental health,” Gomez wrote. Netflix responded with no comment when asked about Gomez being cut from the show. Instead, Hype House centered other story lines, from tensions between Chase Hudson and Thomas Petrou to a COVID-19-related fiasco that Hype House member Larray claimed was fabricated to make up for Gomez’s absence.
If you are in crisis, please call RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE for free, anonymous support and resources.