Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Sexy Drinks and Home Invasions

This week's Top Chef episode wasn't any good.

It started out with a good idea - invading homes to find what you can. Steve and I actually already had this idea for a show, but Top Chef really messed it up. In our version, each chef would pick a house and cook some sort of gourmet entree based on what was there, be it a foodie kitchen or not. Of course I'm sure the judges would make sure that something could be made in each kitchen, but in this episode I got the impression that Top Chef gave each house money to stock up before the raid. What fun is that? You need to work with what the people really have on hand.

While we're on the subject, my other cooking show idea: me, Steve, Jess Sum, and Danny-Boy try to recreate cooking show meals using a regular kitchen and without having much, if any, training. I think it would be interesting to see if real people in a real, non-studio, kitchen could pull off the recipes. So Bravo or Food Network, if you are reading this, let me know and we'll talk.

So besides the botched idea, the block party concept was also no good. I don't watch this to see pasta salad and mini-hamburgers. I know they have to vary the episodes so we're not seeing the same things every time, but I don't see how picnic food is relevant to winning $100,000 from the Glad family of products toward opening your own restaurant and the title of Top Chef (by the way, that prize sucks! $100,000?!).

Two final points. First, for Jess Mac - Mark wore Hyde glasses! Second, Nikki needs to go. I am sick of her stupid hats and excuses for her ruined dishes (mac & cheese dried out and turd-like mushrooms).


My early prediction looked good again as Richard won immunity during quickfire for his jicama taco, but I was disappointed not to see much of the kiwi this week.

The show was kind of boring until the end when the very confident red team found out they lost the elimination challenge. The tensions and bravado flared up like the match in the old hemorhoid commercials. Sadly, I think we all saw Erik's departure coming from a mile a way. All his food looked like crap, even if I am a little nervous that he'll seek me out and kill me for saying so. Zoe would have left, I'm sure, if Bravo didn't have the disclaimer at the end of the show that allows elimination decisions to be governed by the network-breaking up the lesbian couple so soon wouldn't be good for the ratings.

The funny thing about Stephanie picking up her second win was that when she described her contribution to the team, it sounded like she was an appendix.

I think the show needs some work right now. Part of the problem is that there are no awards for winning the elimination challenges as there had been in the past. The quick fire provides more of an incentive because the winner gets immunity. In the elimination challenge, all you have to do is not come in last place.


The Ardmorons Top Chef Archive


Los said...

I was sad to see Erik go, even though he has not been at all impressive. He tells it like it is, and he brings a "heavy-metal" flavor to the show. I agree that the "judges" probably got some "suggestions" from the producers when they identified the three worst dishes. Since the show already had enough pain in the ass contestants, Erik was chosen over the lesbian and the "stylish" chick. I just wish at least one of the two "hip-hop" guys would get thrown off.

Jess Sum said...

Ok, a few things:

1.) Unfortunately Des, they already did your pantry raid idea 9 years ago on the Food Network. It was called "Door Knock Dinners", and it was hosted by the long-forgotten-Aussie Gordon Elliot. It was good, especially when they hit a frat house once.

2.) Nikki DOES suck. Let that whiny sludge-maker go. Everybody loved Papa Souffle.

3.) Steve, I agree with you on more incentive to win elimination challenges, but previous prizes sucked ("You received a copy of Erik Ripert's book...which we're pretty sure you have or can buy used on for $17.95."). The quickfire should give you an ADVANTAGE (i.e. first pick at a protein or a bigger shopping budget), and winning the elimination round should give you immunity.

schue said...

Yea, i was a little disappointed,i don't tune in to watch a cullinary show to watch them make mac and cheese with velveeta and pasta salad. Plus, the show has gotten way too commercial.
Whatever happens to the Next Food Network stars? They win and you never see them again, except for Guy, the dude from diners, drive ins and dives.