Hey all sorry I missed last week’s double dose of Chef Ramsay but I’ve been crazed with schoolwork these last few weeks. I did find the time to watch Hell’s Kitchen’s last two episodes and here are some quick thoughts before we get into last night’s show:
-Not surprised at all Sabrina went home in the first hour. She’s been inconsistent for a while now and really should have stepped up more with the menu. I agreed with Tennille’s assessment that Sabrina should not have criticized all of Tennille’s ideas without having any of her own.
-I’m getting more and more impressed with Dave each week. In the first hour he pushes on despite re-injuring his arm, and in the second hour he wins the challenge and helps Ariel when she falls behind. I’m starting to think he could take this whole thing. At first I thought he was too laid back to win but he’s been strong every week and looks to be a safe bet for the final three.
-On the women’s side, I cannot believe how much Ariel blew it in the second hour. Accidentally leaving a burner on (which resulted in the burnt lettuce that made Chef walk out on the kitchen) is one thing, but she served raw food the previous hour and then fell behind after Chef walked out. She really seems to be cracking under the pressure just as Tennille is stepping up to be a strong leader in the kitchen. I’m starting to think Tennille may be the last girl standing instead of Ariel. It pains me to say this since I can barely listen to Tennille’s confessionals without wanting to stick pencils in my ears, but she has come on strong these past few weeks and led the squad when Chef walked out. I don’t think Ariel could have done that, and while she blamed Tennille for not helping her when she fell behind, it was to some extent Ariel’s fault that she fell behind in the first place.
-AND Chef told Tennille it was the best he’s ever seen anyone cook meat. Now that’s a compliment. The more I think about it the more I think the three left standing at the end of service last week will be the final three. Originally I had Ariel in there instead of Tennille but I’m starting to change my mind.
-I did admire Ariel agreeing that she should be on the chopping block in hour two. It really could have gone either way between those three. I was quite surprised they did not put up Van since I thought he had the worst service of the three. Suzanne’s refusal to plate did anger me though, and if I were Chef I would have cut her right there (though of course he wasn’t around to hear her say that). As for Ariel, she was worse than Suzanne I thought, at least this one night.
-I was also surprised Chef was so annoyed to see Ariel put on the chopping block, especially since she was the reason he walked out of service.
-For a split second I thought he actually might get rid of Ariel, but I agreed with his choice to send Van out the door. He has struggled with fish the entire time, which is supposed to be his specialty, and Suzanne’s issues seem to be more with timing and people skills than with actual cooking.
Now on to Episode 12:
-Just when I’m starting to like Dave he gets mad at Tennille for changing her mind at the elimination last week. He is correct in saying she claimed she was going to send Ariel up and then voted for Van (as the cameras remind us) but he WAY overreacted to this. Chef probably would have sent Van home anyway even if the other three had not specifically nominated him- he’s done that before.
-Kevin is still his usual smug self though, claiming he likes seeing others self-destruct even though he has gotten into an argument or two throughout this competition as well.
-Ariel does seem to be the nicest of the group, comforting Suzanne after her close call on the chopping block. I think I am still rooting for her over Dave, but I’m just worried her performance last week might come back to haunt her.
-Is presentation really so important that it is the main focus of the first individual challenge??? Though getting other foodies to judge the contestants is a smart idea. But still a contestant can create a visually stunning dish that tastes like crap and still get second place. Or it could taste wonderful and not even make the top 2.
-Wow Dave is really in a bad mood this episode (or at least shown to be via editing). Now he argues Suzanne’s salad is not difficult enough of a dish for foodie editors. He may be right but he didn’t have to say it, even in a confessional.
-Yay Tennille’s fish broke!! That means she’s probably not going to win. My early bet is on Ariel- she mentioned how she needed a nice pick-me-up after the last two weeks and a challenge win would do just that.
-Based on presentation I would send Ariel and Suzanne to the final round. Dave’s looked good also but he FORGOT WHAT HE MADE. Wow he has had some really bad moments on challenges- that could also be his downfall in a pretty open competition.
I don’t know what was worse- this or the “fig” debacle. Or the dish he made that looked liked dogfood.
-Shows what I know about presentation- Suzanne gets fourth (with Tennille getting last, obviously) while Kevin is first. Kevin’s was good looking also I guess but didn’t look as appetizing to me as the others. At least Ariel got second in the looks portion of the competition- Dave’s failure to know what he made probably cost him second place.
-Kevin of course uses this opportunity to brag about how great he is. But once it comes down to tasting he is more subdued. Does he actually think he’ll get beaten? I never thought I’d see the day where Kevin doubts his own abilities. He had been tolerable the past couple weeks but already I want to punch him and it’s only the first 10 minutes of the episode.
-Both dishes are good, so of course they go to commercial before revealing who wins the challenge. I really hope it’s Ariel. Not only because she’s my favorite but because I can’t stand another minute of Kevin gloating.
-So they both won- that was anticlimactic. Well at least Ariel didn’t lose, even if she has to share the win with Kevin.
-That’s a great reward they got- having the recipes published in a magazine. That’s almost like what the winner of Top Chef gets.
-Haha the rest of the contestants have to clean the streets as a punishment. Not as gross as prior punishments but it reminds me of what prisoners have to do after being freed- appropriate since the three are “prisoners” of Hell’s Kitchen.
-Dave STILL has a grudge against Tennille. Give it a rest already! I’m really starting to get annoyed with him.
-Tennille just made the prisoner reference that I made two posts above. I’d say great minds think alike but I don’t think she qualifies haha. At least she learned she will never commit a crime because the judge might make her pick up trash (the horror!!!)
-For the first time all season I hope Dave’s wrist does force him to withdraw from the show. And AGAIN the challenge further injures it. Can’t he get an exemption from the challenges that require difficult arm work?
-Of course Kevin tries to convince Dave to quit- at least he admits his motives in the confessional and doesn’t pretend to be truly concerned for Dave’s well-being.
-I’m surprised Dave’s wrist is preventing him from helping with prep- it’s never stopped him before.
-Is Chef allowed to use the incredibly overplayed “Yes We Can” phrase if he’s not actually from America?? Just wondering.
-So Dave, Tennille, and Suzanne must work together on appetizers. Oh yeah this is definitely going to go badly. I wonder if Chef purposely assigns the chefs who hate each other to work together.
-I do admire Dave for agreeing not to bring his conflict with Tennille into the kitchen (for now).
-First mistake of the night goes to Tennille, who forgets to tell Suzanne when to drop the scallops for the first appetizer. At least she goes over to help her while Dave watches her food.
-These guys can barely complete one appetizer and are expected to do several orders at once?? Maybe Chef should have waited until next week to up the stakes.
-And now we have Ariel v. Tennille round 2. Earlier this season Tennille went against Ariel’s view that a dish was done improperly and it turns out Tennille was right. Now Ariel warns Tennille that her risotto is overdone, but Tennille again ignores her. But this time indeed Ariel is right. Chef doesn’t get too mad though- he must have more patience for these contestants since they have been strong in the past.
-And now Suzanne burns her scallops. At least the two I don’t like are the two failing the most so far.
-Tennille’s SECOND risotto is mushy too. But wait, it’s not Tennille’s fault, it’s the fault of the person who made the risotto- Kevin!! Wow all we need now is for Dave to mess up and everyone I don’t like will be in Chef’s doghouse.
-Dave blames Tennille for not noticing the rice was bad. While I guess that is true to some extent when you are busy cooking a bunch of dishes like she was you probably don’t have time to notice those things.
-Both do take responsibility for their failures, which I would admire if they did not already annoy me so much.
-Chef is being REALLY hard on Kevin for the rice. Probably because he expects so much from him. As we go to break Chef tastes another risotto and calls the two over. I’m guessing he’s just going to say it is brilliant and ask why they couldn’t do that before. And indeed I was right- I know this show too well.
-Nooo Ariel messes up too- this time serving pink chicken. Kevin is critical of her in confessional yet he’s the one who can’t even cook rice correctly. I don’t know much about cooking but I think rice is easier to cook than meat.
-Now it’s Suzanne’s turn to mess up, sending up undercooked fish. Again, Kevin calls her out, and again I say YOU COULDN’T EVEN COOK RICE CORRECTLY!!!
-Another pet peeve of mine is the restaurant goers complaining about their food taking forever to get to the table. YOU AGREED TO GO TO A RESTAURANT WITH REALITY SHOW CONTESTANTS AS CHEFS. YOU KNOW THE FOOD IS PROBABLY GOING TO BE BAD OR SLOW. SO STOP COMPLAINING. Okay rant over.
– I can’t believe Ariel messed up on the lamb again, this time sending out pieces barely hanging on the bone. And I can’t believe Chef yelled at her in front of the entire dining room. Great the episode where I like her the most she’ll probably go home.
-So the contestants did finish service, but it certainly did not go smoothly. Everyone messed up except for Dave. Ariel for sure should go up for elimination, and as much as I like her she probably should go home based on this service. Kevin screwed everyone over with the rice but has been solid to this point. Tennille’s mistakes were more Kevin’s fault, and Suzanne only had that one bad fish as far as we saw.
-If the other contestants were smart they would put Kevin up for elimination since he’s the biggest threat.
-It sounds like Suzanne didn’t have much cooking to do since no one ordered fish. Well then it’s kind of hard to send her home if she didn’t do anything.
-Suzanne talks about how her performance was “beautiful”, but as Kevin points out, she did serve that raw fish. He also is correct in saying she is the most inconsistent.
-Figures they can’t agree on who to put up for elimination since they couldn’t communicate all night.
-First nominee is Ariel. No surprise there. Now it gets interesting… And of course we go to commercial right before we hear who nominee number two is.
-Suzanne is nominee number two. Oh yeah I forgot about the scallops she served that were overcooked. So she made as many mistakes as Ariel that were shown, and she has been worse than Ariel over time so hopefully that means Suzanne will be sent home. And, as Kevin correctly points out (dang he is being correct too often late in this episode) she even thought her performance was good. Ariel did not seem at all surprised that she was being put up for elimination and seemed to accept it, unlike Suzanne. I know on Top Chef contestants who don’t think their bad food is bad are usually sent home, so hopefully that will be the case here.
-It’s Suzanne’s FOURTH time on the chopping block- though I wonder how much of that is because her teammates hated her. But then they hate her because she lacks the people skills needed to be a good head chef.
-This really could go either way. Chef thinks both should go. But thank goodness Suzanne is finally sent packing. As he points out, he gave her many chances and she didn’t taken advantage of them.
-Next week though should be quite interesting between Tennille and Ariel. At first I thought Ariel was a lock for the final three but Tennille’s stock is rising as Ariel’s is falling. I still think barring something shocking Dave and Kevin will be in the final three.
-At least Suzanne has learned from her mistakes and realizes she must work on how she deals with other people.
-Wow Chef told Tennille she could have been on the chopping block too. But I still say the risotto disaster was more Kevin’s fault than hers.
-Next week Dave reinjures his wrist AGAIN, the contestants still all hate each other, and there are two “shocking” surprises- including unfinished business with someone on a telephone. Hmmm he already brought Robert back- is it Ji?? Julia from a few seasons back (who Chef said was not yet ready and sent to cooking school after she was eliminated in the top four)?
Thought’s on this week’s show. Are you no longer on the Dave bandwagon? Do you think Ariel can beat out Tennille for the third spot in the top 3? Post your comments below.
Check out the full episode 12 video below courtesy of hulu.com: