Mariah Carey already threw some major shade at Nicki Minaj during her Barbara Walters interview, but now the ladies are struggling not to throw chairs at one another onstage.

At a recent 'American Idol' press conference, Mimi and the Harajuku Barbie complimented one another -- and sounded really, really forced.

When asked about the feud, Carey told the Television Critics Association, "It was kind of a one-sided thing."

That didn't sit well with Minaj, who was not about to have her wig snatched from Carey. "No, it wasn't," she snapped back. Per witnesses, eyebrows rose and the tension was thicker than the combined platforms on the ladies' heels. "We are professionals," Minaj added to the panel. "Haven't you ever been in a fight with someone you work with?"

Carey tried changing the subject and softening the tone of everyone involved. "This is a very passionate panel and there are a lot of strong personalities," she said. "Starting this process I thought there was the possibility that there was going to be a difference of opinion … the fighting is what it is. This is 'American Idol.' It's bigger than all that. It's bigger than some stupid, trumped up thing. It's about the next big superstar that will come from this show."

When asked how they kissed and made up, Minaj sassed, "We watched my sex tape." Carey didn't like that response much.

"There it is," Carey cringed. "The whole thing is convoluted. It's a distraction from the show and a distraction from the contestants. It's unfair to them. It shouldn't be about any of us, it should be about them. It's not supposed to be about us, it's about the contestants."

It got so catty that reporters actually asked the ladies to say one nice thing about the other. Sort of like in kindergarten when your teacher forces you to make nice with the smelly kid who eats glue against your will.

"That actually is easy," Minaj said. "I say nice things about Mariah all the time. I even tell her all the time how much a fan I am of her. She's one of my favorite artists of all time. She's really shaped a generation of singers." The 'Starships' rapper added that a ton of the show's hopefuls "aspire to be a Mariah Carey."

Not bad, right?

Carey wasn't quite as kind, but she wasn't outright rude: she just threw more subtle shade in the epic way that she always does. "Nicki and I worked together very early on in her career and did a song from an album that I had done called 'Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel. It's called 'Up Out My Face,' ironically," Carey said.

"Actually it was one of my favorite videos and songs. And I did feel that she was going to go very far and still have that feeling and am grateful for anything nice that she or anyone were to say about me."

Basically, Carey said, "I'm the legend here, Nicki. Have a seat. Have several seats."

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