BOILERPLATE: Have you heard? I’m a finalist in the 2009 Bloggies. Best-Kept Secret Blog! No shitting. I’ve added a new page to the site specifically to showcase my best work pander for votes.
Tonight: Top Chef all-stars return, where all-stars means “we still haven’t been able to get the kinds of jobs we think we deserve, because we’ve embarrassed ourselves on national television.” Which means that we’ll be subjected to the likes of Andrew and Spike. Let us all pray to the baby Jesus that Ilan is not involved.
I did think I spied Season 1’s Miguel in the preview, though. Miguel is responsible for what is possibly my favorite line in Top Chef history, a line that is still routinely used around my house: (in reference to Tiffany): “You’re like a snake. Sssssssss. (making rattlesnake fang motion with hand).” Genius. See you at 10.
WARNING: Both my ancient computer and our internet connection are a little whack, so this might be less like “liveblogging” and more like “15 minutes after the fact-blogging.”
Last Week: Carla sent the love out with her inedible desserts. THAT IS HER BELIEF, Tom. Fabio was predictably slick as front-of-the-house guy. Leah and Hosea I’m ignoring entirely because I am DONE DONE DONE.
10:01: Okay, just one thing: Leah “guessed” they kissed. You “guess”? You can’t “guess” it happened because IT WAS CAUGHT ON FILM.
Okay, I was going to go on about that, but I stopped myself. Serenity now.
10:03: Ooh, the judge is the guy who just opened Scarpetta, I’ve been wanting to go there SO BADLY. Because if you want good Italian, you go to a restaurant opened by a guy named Cohen. I joke! I love the Jews. And I do want to go to Scarpetta.
Quickfire: There’s some kind of convoluted cross-referencing board to decide who cooks what, it’s all very “Price is Right.” Plingo!
Fabio has to cook vegetables: “There is no reason to eat vegetables where there is meat and fish around?” Indeed.
10:05: They all have different food groups to work with, plus oats. Because this? Is the Quaker Oats Quickfire Challenge! My Official Goodyear Tire Ass is getting REALLY TIRED of this.
Did Hosea just pronounce wienerschnitzel with a “W” instead of a “V”, like the dangle? Heh.
10:06: Carla: “Jeff cannot quiet the creative monkeys.” Man, I can’t even see the creative monkeys. One of us is really missing something. Or on something.
10:08: Does Fabio secretly have a mushy little heart? Because when he thought he was being made fun of, I thought I saw a little red-rimmed eye there.
I can’t lie, all these things look really gross. Judge to Leah: “Why did you choose to use bacon?” “I just really like bacon.” That’s the only real answer to that question, is it not?
10:11: Jeff: “Sometimes doing too much can put you behind.” And sometimes I like to read Pottery Barn catalogs on the shitter. E.g., EVERY DAY. When will you learn?
Winner: Stefan. Dammit! I’m still rooting for dark horse Carla, because it seems like my boy Fabio is going down.
10:12: Fabio: “We’ve been told there’s a present in the Stew Room for us…a dog?” Seriously, people. Seriously. There’s only so much I can take.
10:13: Elimination Challenge: Top Chef Bowl! Returning contestants. Andrew, Josie, Andrea, Spike, Camille, Nikki “the human pasta machine” and Miguel. Jamie is intimidated. I’m not sure why, because half of these people? Completely sucked. Who the fuck is Camille? She’s like the Melissa of whatever season she was on – and I can barely remember Melissa, who was on not 2 weeks ago.
10:18: Cook off, based on the regional cuisine of an NFL team. How (not) exciting! Each side will field one player for each NFL team.
Like the quickfire, this all seems needlessly complex. Can’t we just cook some food? And I’m not just saying that because Bluehost is acting up and freaking me out while I’m trying to write this. All I know is, if this show runs to 75 minutes, heads will roll. Hopefully Spike’s, if I can find a way to get close to him quickly enough.
10:21: Dramatic twist! Any non-winning player is up for elimination.
10:24: Spike is surprised that all the tension is back, even though he’s not actually in the competition anymore. Also back? The hats. The hateful, infernal hats.
Apparently Andrew’s culinary boner is gone, because he’s just threatened to urinate on the bodies of the Season 5 contestants and I don’t think you can have both of those things at the same time.
If Andrea beats Stefan I will run naked through the street wearing nothing but cabbage leaves. I totally will. You are so glad you don’t live where I live, because even though it will be joyful, that is not something you necessarily want to witness.
10:29: Useless interlude. This time, there’s too much Spike. AND he calls my Fabio the wrong name. Interlude, FAIL.
10:33: Apparently, mornings are stressful when you’re in a reality show competition.
Fabio just called his bed a “bunky bed.” I COULD JUST DIE. He wants to win because his mamma is sick and he could use the prize money. Therefore, he is getting the boot.
10:36: Shockingly, the scoring rules for the “Top Chef Bowl” are also needlessly complex, so I stopped paying attention.
10:37: Round 1: Nikki v. Leah, New York. KICK HER ASS, NIKKI. Whoops, I mean, good luck everyone!
What is more New York than chicken livers? Come on, now.
10:39: Round 2: Hosea v. Miguel, Seattle. They’re smack talking. “Sssss.” Hosea sweeps, whatever that means.
Is Andrew taunting live scorpions?
10:41: Round 3: Carla v. Andrew, New Orleans. I want to smack Andrew’s fake accent off his face. Carla’s putting the “quick love” into her gumbo. That kinda thing usually goes for about $15 in the alley behind the movie theater, doesn’t it? Keep it safe, that’s all I’m saying.
Is there a woman in the audience who is not wearing pants? A FOOTBALL JERSEY IS NOT A DRESS.
10:43: Round 4: Stefan v. Andrea, Texas. FINGERS CROSSED.
Shizznit! Stefan, you have been pwned, and I HATE using that word, but I am so excited that I will bust it out here, yes I will. BRING ME THE FUCKING CABBAGE, BECAUSE I AM ON MY WAY.
10:50: Round 5: Jamie v. Camille, San Francisco.
Ariane is the one wearing no pants! Lady’s got gams. Jamie takes all the points over “Camille Who?”
10:51: Round 6: Jeff v. Josie, Miami. Battle ceviche.
What Jeff has no quad of dishes with a trio of garnishes and 17 cocktails? There appears to be a single dish on the plate. And yet, the judges still think there were too many things going on on Jeff’s plate. Brother cannot catch a break.
Jeff would have been embarassed to serve what Josie served. Not so embarassing? Winning.
10:54: Round 7: Fabio v. Spike, Wisconsin. I want Fabio to win as much as I wanted Stefan to lose, but the editing monkeys have not been telegraphing good things.
Fabio overcooked his venison: dishonor.
But the crowd loves him! Because he is the Fabio! But he’s still probably going home.
10:57: This episode IS running long. Because we needed a fucking Plingo! board and football helmets instead of just cooking some damn food. Not that this is a cooking competition or anything.
11:00: Judges Table: Jamie, Carla, Leah and Hosea. Jamie manages to somehow look smug while also wearing a glittery gold headband, and I’m having a lot of trouble reconciling that.
Toby Young tasted Carla’s love. That’s an extra $5, Toby.
11:02: If Toby has to eat food while watching football, he likes to dispense with utensils. And then he throws the bones and scraps on the ground for the servants and royal hounds to dispose of.
WINNER: CARLA! She won Super Bowl tickets, and I swear to Jesus, I thought her eyes here going to come out of her head. For real, not in a cartoon-character way.
11:05: Losers: Stefan, Jeff, Fabio.
Fabio, don’t talk back. Don’t talk back. Don’t talk back. Shutting up has always been your strong point. Do that now.
11:06: Jeff thinks he should win because he did more. Apparently, he was thrown by having to serve food on plastic plates.
Padma thinks Stefan’s salad was intolerable. But he’s still not going home.
Wait, Jeff pre-cooked the shrimp for his ceviche? This is what you miss when you’re typing. So you didn’t make ceviche, you made poached shrimp. AND you’re wigged out by plastic plates.
A lifeline for my Fabio?
11:12: LOSER: JEFF! A reprieve for my boy! Who then sucks up a little with some crap about second chances, but it was somehow still charming.
But who will share Fabio’s bunky bed?
Jeff thinks he will be haunted by this loss for at least a decade. He is the Dave Mustaine to Top Chef’s Metallica.
NEXT WEEK: ERIC RIPERT! ERIC RIPERT! Everyone is terrified!
I, perhaps, require an intervention.
feeling sheepish. Thanks for calling me out.:)
Well, you might have gotten bored.
Wow…first time on Top Chef, a Tron-inspired oats board.
I want a t-shirt that says ‘i can’t quiet the creative monkeys’
khemasanine, little sister, what da heck did you do that requires calling out? Inquiring minds wanna know so we can razz you over the phone tomorrow.
So I was WAY wrong about Eugene. But I was right about Radhika, Melissa, Ariane and a bunch of other people whose names escape me right now. I am, evidently, good at predicting who is NOT going to win. I predict now that not winning will be LeahHosea, and Jamie. Why Jamie? Because for some reason that I can’t quite isolate she annoys the hell out of me. That is all.
A t-shirt with ‘oat crazy’ on it would work too.
homemadedot, i want that shirt too. i’m adding that to the list of cafe press items i plan on releasing.
rebecca, join the club. i had much higher hopes for eugene. i’m still not sure about jamie though, even though i don’t like her.
So Stefan picked Andrea because it’s a sure win? What a pansy.
Stefan just got schooled. I can hear his ego deflating from here…
For some reason I would love to see Stefan get booted off just so we can see him go German/Finnish hulk in the stew room with folding chairs.
Who’s the chick going up against Jaime?
kerry, if only. they’re not booting stefan. i’m afraid for my fabio, although jeff has also been generally useless.
tanis, it’s camille, the contestant that time forgot. seriously, i have no recollection of her.
omg! could Carla’s eyes get any bigger?!
Jeez louise, I haven’t been able to get on to your live blog because you apparently have exceeded your quota. Bloggers overload. Wahoo! Missed the show getting ready to watch at 11:00.
If I make a dish with 2000 steps (and heart and soul) does that mean that I don’t get voted off? Ugh, Jeff…culinary accounting will not win me over.
Dr. Chase goes home. YAY!
Super Bowl tickets! SHUT UP!!!
When she’s excited Carla quite resembles that GEICO stack-o-money.
Karen, “Geico Stack-o-money” best quote of the day.
You think you have a complaint with the episode running over? Up here in Canada they extend these ones to an HOUR AND HALF with interminable ad breaks filled with PSAs like Hinterland Whose Who!!! Even as a life long Canadian I thought HWW was a product of SCTV and kept waiting for the John Candy voice over.
It is slightly better than watching them via torrent because they Food Network Canada thinks that a four month delay is acceptable.
Man, this show actually had some excitement to it! And a touch of conspiracy, I fear. Bravo needs to have some drama going on this season, and so far most of the personality-less people have been eliminated. We have left, Dr. Chase, Jamie, and Hosleah who have little to no personality. Hoseleah is going NOWHERE until the final four, and may now even make it. How do the three best chefs not win a competition like this? How can Stefan, Fabio, and Dr. Chase lose to past losers?!? Well, I am convinced that Bravo needed 3 chicks and 3 dudes and Hoseleah to remain to keep ratings up after watching this travesty. How can ‘Bunky’ lose (although he did ‘overcook’ venison)? How can 20 ingredients or more on a plate lose to 3 ingredients? How can cooking intensity lose to a two-time TC loser?!? It should have been Jamie, Hosea, and Leah on the chopping block! No wait, that’s Food Network’s new show. Anyway, I am saddened to see Dr. Chase leave, but glad for all the females who are still watching for Fabio. I guess my last week’s predictions of a final four are now shot since Dr. Chase is out, but here’s some things that I predict will happen next week: Hoseleah gets more tense; Carla freaks out; Stefan is a jerk; Fabio will use the term ‘Monkey Ass’ one more time; Jamie will lose her shit; the loser is going to be disgruntled about their loss. I need some spirit xanax to quiet my creative monkeys!
kerry, yeah, it happened twice but only for a few minutes. i don’t know why. i was ready to call my hosting company and rip someone’s throat out (i have poor impulse control).
other kerry, you are entirely correct re: the GEICO eyes. best comment of the night.
dab, 90 minutes? i would would just top, and turn it on for the last 15. are the PSAs just for canada? do you need PSAs for a place you already live?
gaines, okay 20 shitty and/or mismatched ingredients on a plate could totally lose to 3 good, fresh, well-paired ingredients. case in point: heirloom tomatoes + mozzarella + olive oil. simple. perfect. delicious. hard to beat.
i’m kinda liking that “monkey ass” is becoming a regular term. i’m adding it to the list of potential t-shirt slogans.
Oh, I know that 3 quality ingredients can beat 20 any day of the week. I am just mourning the loss of Dr. Chase!
same kerry, sister formerly known has kerry will have to add an initial.
It’s a rough night when I’m forced to admit I want Nikki to win. I hated Nikki. And now I hate her more because she didn’t beat Leah. When will that girl go home?
But I’m glad it was Chase (I mean Jeff) and not Fabio. I can breathe now. And I’ll share his bunky bed.
I think we have weird ad laws that regulate a ratio of commercial minutes to programme minutes. The Hinterland Whose Who were about, I am not sure, moose and racoons. I just hit mute and fire up a podcast to play.
It is still better than waiting 4 months for Food Network Canada to allow us to see them.
In Canada they run PSAs about moose and raccons on the food channel? And I thought Maine was a hoot!
Yes, that is what I choose to find funny here…….!
Watched at 11, read you this morning. You failed to mention our guy Fabio taking off his wedding band and kissing it after the inquisition. Be still my beating heart, how much more can we take! I want to believe you were tying during this brief moment.
In the promo teasing next week,Toby Young made a comment calling Eric Ripert ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’. It sparked a serious discussument avec my husband. It may have been that I’m already weary of Toby Young, but his comment really irked me. I said that Eric Ripert could kick Obi-Wan’s butt. My hubby said that Ripert couldn’t even dream of kicking Obi-Wan’s butt. I think I win since Ripert is, after all, real and Obi-Wan is fictional. He thinks he wins since Obi-Wan is, after all, a master Jedi. I think he underestimates the knife skills of the master chef. Laser sword my aunt.
I am so glad that I was not the only person who was like “there was a Camille in Season 3? Really?” Because I have absolutely no recollection of her being part of the season.
I was so sure that Fabio was doomed after we found out that he needs the money to help with his momma’s medical stuff. And bunky bed? Could he be any more endearing? I don’t think so. So while I was pleased that Fabio was not sent home, I was sad that the judges didn’t take this opportunity to send Stefan packing.
I was pretty sure that with all the trash talk Stefan was doing about Andrea that Andrea was going to win. And it was beautiful to watch. And seriously, Stefan’s food looked like institutional food. Blech. Did you find the cabbage leaves? Weren’t you cold?
I was a little surprised that the judges didn’t seem to realize that shellfish is always cooked (usually poached) for ceviche. Because if you just let the citrus cook it, you’ll probably DIE because it isn’t safe. So Jeff poaching the shrimp…is what he should have done. Poor Jeff. He seemed so…shaken by the whole thing. I hope someone remembers to tell him that this is REALITY SHOW and that the winner is probably not the most talented or best chef, but rather the best cheftestant. Not really the same thing as being the best chef at all.
I can’t believe I have to put up with Leah for another week. Do you think someone paid off Nikki to cook CHICKEN LIVERS just so that Leah would have to win that round?
bunky bed. Sorry. Couldn’t resist.
I am actually really glad that Carla won, and that Toby tasted the love. I think that costs at least an extra $5. I knew that this was probably going to be a good episode for her when we found out that she had forgotten that she had been classically trained at the beginning of the episode.
There was a Camille in Season 3? Really?
The thing about this episode that I found most objectionable was that it was painfully obvious that this show is a competition that involves cooking, not a cooking competition. It seemed to me that the cheftestants had two quickfire challenges instead of actually getting to cook something. There was no reason to make Padma wear that faux ref shirt. No reason at all.
gaines, but why? his face NEVER MOVED. then again, i don’t watch “house” so i may just be missing out on the dr. chase love.
sarah, i’m so with you on the nikki/leah thing.
dab, okay, that’s seriously hilarious. i can’t believe you wouldn’t watch them.
kerry w, SO BUMMED that i missed that. you know he’s an awesome husband, because he loves his mamma and nonna so much. [swoon]
rebecca, i agree that eric ripert could handily defeat obi-wan. however, i also postulate that thomas keller is like yoda. and wolfgang puck has become jar-jar binks.
julianna, it’s a wonder i bother with the liveblogging, since no one has any opinions on anything.
they really did telegraph stefan’s defeat. you knew they would never send him home, but could be have been any more condescending to her? nikki and the chicken livers: yes, gross. but also very new york.
it really did seems like 2 quickfires. everything about the EC, from the helmets to the scoring to padma’s shirt was just so totally unnecessary. there has to be an easier way to build a challenge around american regional foods.
Wolfgang Puck like Jar-Jar Binks? Oh daggers. That is just so low. I can’t hate Wolfgang Puck even though he pimps himself and his canned soup all over the place. He was the first celebrity chef my kids loved. They couldn’t pronounce his name and called him “Woof and Puff”. Maybe like C3 PO, but not Jar-jar.
I don’t think I will ever get over Hosea’s happy flinging of the word “wiener” for his schnitzel. Have people not told him how its pronounced because its funny and they want him to embarrass himself in front of many people? Very sad…
I was wondering if the show could suck any more. Thank God Fabio keeps talking. I don’t understand half of it, but it is freaking adorable.
Will someone please explain to me why Padma is still on this show, thus ruining it for me?
Fabio is right. Why cook vegetables when there is meat to be had?
“I jsut really like bacon” is indeed the perfect answer.
Oh yes, we keep hearing about the HINTERLAND here in Canada. Good thing we record Top Chef; we fast-forwarded through all that Leah-Hosea crap… and basically all those extraneous crap about their thoughts/feelings and “personal lives”.
Read through the comments again… and wow, we’re not the only one who call him Chase. And yes, either Hosea or Leah or Carla should’ve gone home. The injustice of it all!
rebecca, i stand behind it.
gillian, hey, the week before leah didn’t know the word for “all these little bones in my fish” (uh, did you mean the PINBONES), so i don’t trust any of them farther than i can throw ’em.
oxen, did you see the first season, and the horror that was katie lee joel? padma is like meryl streep in comparison.
rachel, yeah, plus, you know, there aren’t many vegetables in the traditional italian diet to begin with, it’s so meat-based.
cooky. but i still love him.
ts, i wish i lived in a place with a name as fun as “hinterland.” also i wish i had the $ to visit vancouver, because it looks like a great city. the ocean-mountain combo rocks my world.
no way should carla have gone home! leah, yes, please. but carla? she’s my new not-so-secret favorite (because as much i love fabio, he’s not lasting much longer).
Carla is going to win. No doubt about it. Okay, maybe some doubt. She is my favorite, I enjoy watching her facial expressions.
Oh did I ever laugh at the image of you and the cabbage leaves. It was a joyful thing indeed.
Not that it matters, and I’m pretty sure I should have other things to do, but Camille didn’t win ANYTHING on her season and was eliminated in episode 4. To be an all-star, don’t you have to be good at the game? I’m just saying.
What’s up with Stefan and Fabio and the shitstick thing?