"Mouths [were] hanging open, everyone [was] shocked. We only gave you a shortened version of that. We had to go through another song of her walking around," McCarthy, who has co-hosted the New Year's Eve special for the past seven years, explained of the awkwardness. "It was just, it was so bad, and then for a moment I said, 'Take a step back, Jenny, and try to find some empathy right now.' And I did."
"All of a sudden I felt really bad for her, because it was that bad, it was a complete train wreck," McCarthy continued. "And like [my husband] Donnie [Wahlberg] said, being in this business, I know what it's like to have your prompter go out. I know what it's like to have my inner ears go out. It's scary, I know what it's like when your brain malfunctions and you're on live TV. So I was like, you know what, I have sympathy for her."
McCarthy admitted that her sympathy stopped, however, when Carey and her team later accused Dick Clark Productions "of sabotaging her performance."
"Now I do understand our egos of course want to blame everyone but itself for mistakes, but I literally had a visceral reaction to her saying that Dick Clark Productions did this on purpose and for ratings," McCarthy said. "I mean, let me tell you something. If Dick Clark were alive today, I guarantee he would be on air right now fighting back. He's not, so I'm going to."
"Dick Clark Productions has been doing this show for 45 years," she continued, adding, "So for [Mariah] to defame them was so incredibly insulting for the group of people who work their balls off preparing and rehearsing for their musical guests."
"The truth of the matter is, Mariah didn't do a sound check, she said it there," McCarthy exclaimed. "She did whatever you would call like a dance move rehearsal, holding her gold microphone, and she stood off to the side of the stage while she had a stand-in do a sound check."
"Now, when you're doing a show live in Times Square, this is a location that's tough," McCarthy noted. "Out of all the places that you're going to need to do a sound check, you do it there."
Wahlberg chimed in, explaining that "the buck stops with the artist."
"If you're going to be a boss or you're going to be a diva, then you know, again, it's your name, your face and your legacy on the line," Wahlberg, who previously performed on the special with New Kids on the Block, said. "So you leave something to someone else, you have no one to blame but yourself. The music track, missing a vocal, that's on her. No rehearsal? That's on her. And to blame Dick Clark Productions, and Ryan Seacrest, by default, who's an executive producer, these people have made their career on love and respect of music and artists."
"Dick Clark built his whole empire on music and artists and performances," he continued. "Those guys make you rehearse and rehearse and rehearse. I heard Gloria Estefan out there rehearsing. Last year, I heard Demi Lovato rehearsing 10 times."
McCarthy also claimed that "it's completely unfair and bulls**t for [Mariah] to blame DCP," seeing how much preparation goes into the live show.
"Now I think, and if I try to give a guess of what happened, I think Mariah was nervous as hell," McCarthy added. "I think she chose really tough songs to try to sing along with. I think 'Emotions,' that song, I mean her voice is not there anymore. I don't believe there was a problem with her inner ears. I just don't. I think she used it as an excuse. The monitors on the stage are there, by the way, to blast out the songs to the musician in case this happens."
"How do I know the monitors were blasting?" she continued. "Look at the dancers behind her! They were on cue for every beat, right? Every beat! So, I was like, 'You can hear it.' She's choosing not to see it. Now my other opinion, and this is just mine from being there, being on that stage … I don't think she expected to be as far away from this prompter and as small as it was, she could have possibly not been able to see the words to her own song."
Following the performance Saturday night in Times Square, Carey's reps told ET there was "a production issue" and "technical difficulties," and "there unfortunately was nothing [Mariah] could do to continue with the performance given the circumstances."
"Mariah noticed something was wrong," added Carey's manager, Stella Bulochnikov. "She told the stage manager. They changed the mic pack out twice for her inner ear. And they told her that the frequency was off but that it would be on when she got on the stage."
"She's Mariah Carey. She did everything she needed to do at rehearsals," Bulochnikov also told ET. "Everything was fine at rehearsals. I don't think Mariah was deliberately set up to fail but they had major technical glitches. And their decision not to cut to commercial or cut the performance out of the West Coast feed is in a way sabotaging as they wanted a viral moment."
Although Dick Clark Productions initially had no comment, they issued a response on Sunday.
"As the premier producer of live television events for nearly 50 years, we pride ourselves on our reputation and long-standing relationships with artists," the statement read. "To suggest that Dick Clark Productions, as producer of music shows including the American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, New Year's Rockin' Eve and Academy of Country Music Awards, would ever intentionally compromise the success of any artist is defamatory, outrageous and frankly absurd."
"In very rare instances there are of course technical errors that can occur with live television, however, an initial investigation has indicated that Dick Clark Productions had no involvement in the challenges associated with Ms. Carey's New Year's Eve performance," the statement continued. "We want to be clear that we have the utmost respect for Ms. Carey as an artist and acknowledge her tremendous accomplishments in the industry."
Hear the latest update on Carey's performance fallout in the video below.