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Hell’s Kitchen: a winner and a bitter

So it finally came down to Russell vs. Nona for all the marbles, and if you haven’t noticed, “Hell’s Kitchen” has regressed to the point that they don’t do the finale live anymore. But that’s okay….if they did, it would be two long and grueling hours. As it was, they started out with Nona and Russell being whisked off in a helicopter to the site of LA Market, where one of them would become head chef. But of course they would have a challenge, and that would be to whip up 5 courses in 45 minutes…say what? Really? There is no way I believe they did that. Anyway, Gordon Ramsay brought in some of his celebrity chef buddies and subordinates to judge each course. As always it came down to a tie after four rounds (has it ever not?) and for the meat course judged by executive chef at LA Market Kerri Simon, Russell won. So his prize? Once they arrived back at the dorm, they were surprised by eight of their former teammates being there. They would choose their teams, and Russell had the first pick.

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Hell’s Kitchen: we’ve reached the finale

It’s been a long haul this season, and as Fox backed-to-backed two seasons of “Hell’s Kitchen,” we had the chance to see how disinterested the producers are in making this show better or changing things up. Every season, the challenges and when they do each challenge are the same. But I digress. This season is remarkably different, because of the lack of talent. Last night the two finalists were chosen by Gordon Ramsay, but both have serious flaws. Let’s go to the videotape of last night’s next-to-last episode…

Initial challenge: Creating a “fusion” dish using two cuisines from around the globe

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Hell’s Kitchen: status quo-ugh

“Hell’s Kitchen” is getting a bit old with its same-ness and this season, with the lack of a clear-cut star. Gordon Ramsay is going to have to hire an executive chef from a Final Four of meathead Russell, a dude who can’t multi-task in Trev, a woman who acts and sounds like a little kid in Jillian, and another who continues to make big mistakes in Nona. Really? Well yeah, really. Here is the recap from last night:

Initial challenge: Re-creating a dish that Ramsay created by tasting it.

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Hell’s Kitchen: send them all home

Wednesday night’s episode of “Hell’s Kitchen” made it evident that the talent this season is horribly inferior. They began with Russell, Jillian and Nona sitting together proclaiming that they would be the final three, and that Jillian has believed that since Day 1. Really? Can anyone else have a hard time seeing any of them lead a kitchen? Anyway, here is the recap…

Initial challenge: Signature “power lunch” in food trucks.

Mistakes: Menu items. Russell actually made grilled octopus salad. Really? Trev made spaghetti with sausage. Really? Out of a food truck?

Winner: Gail, for her steak salad with mango and pecans. I thought Nona’s chicken salad sandwich with bacon and sweet potato chips would win, but that’s me and that was California. Russ’ dish was the least favorite…uh, big duh.

Prize: A makeover, one that made Gail look only slightly better than she did before

Punishment: What else? Cleaning the food trucks.

Dinner service: Nothing special, other than Paris Hilton being one of the guests.

Mistakes: Lots of them. Jillian could not cook scallops or halibut properly, and Russell was helping. Nona didn’t cook pasta all the way through…..Trev tried to re-fire meat…then Ramsay and sous chef Scott walked out to cool off and make nice for the reality show cameras. When they returned, they switched all the stations up. Then Gail served raw salmon, Jillian did not cook eggs all the way through and Ramsay followed through on his promise, telling Gail and Jillian to….

Quote: “GET OUT!”

Winner: Nobody, and they had to come up with a consensus two nominees for elimination.

On the block: Gail and Trev.

Going home: Gail. At least she got a makeover, and that’s what she said on her way out the door. Meanwhile, how in the world is Trev still here?

Thanks for reading and see you all next week!

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Hell’s Kitchen: waah waah waah, go home

Thankfully, last night’s episode of “Hell’s Kitchen” on Fox was just one hour, or one episode instead of two lumped into one. They must have realized that if they kept doubling them up, the show would be over by Thanksgiving. Anyway, here is our recap of last night, and we’re now down to five chefs!

Initial challenge: Amuse-bouche (quick bite) challenge with guest judges Ludo Lefebvre, Quinn and Karen Hatfield, Suzanne Tracht, and Michael Cimarusti
Mistakes: One judge said Nona’s shrimp and grits smelled like “body odor.” Ouch! And Trev’s frog legs were also a mess
Winner: Russell, for his hamachi broth
Prize: Tour of LA Market, and lunch with Gordon Ramsay and executive chef Kerry Simon. Russell was allowed to bring one person with him and he chose Gail since she finished second in the challenge
Punishment: Cleaning the dorms and having to listen to Trev whine
Dinner service: Tableside Steak Diane
Mistakes: Gail undercooked scallops; Trev overcooked pasta; Gail’s fish stuck to the pan; Jillian over-salted mashed potatoes; Gail “poached” her grilled salmon; Russ’ beef was raw in the middle. Ramsay pulled them all aside and said, “No more mistakes!” They straightened up for a bit before screwing up more. Russ’ steak was raw again, and that set Ramsay off.
Quote: Ramsay, to all chefs: “Get out!”
Winner: No winner. The remaining six chefs had to come up with a consensus two nominees for elimination
On the block: Trev and Sabrina. Sabrina started whining, though, about how she thought Gail screwed up more than she did and waah, waah, waah! Man, she’s annoying.
Going home: Sabrina, because the producers have mercy on us.
So that’s it, we’re down to the final five—Trev, Nona, Russ, Gail and Jillian. Does that seem to you like the weakest final five ever? You have to believe it’s Russ’ job to lose. But we’ll see what happens in the coming weeks. Thanks for reading!

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Hell’s Kitchen: are we there yet?

I realized something last night. I realized that “Hell’s Kitchen” on Fox jumped the shark about three seasons ago. Not that I didn’t think this before, but as I sat there watching with my wife, I realized that we used to really look forward to this show, and now it’s just something I blog about, and at times it pains me to do that. I mean, it’s the same format, the same challenges in the same order, the same everything with this show. Anyway, with that, here is my recap of last night’s double episode…oh, but first…remember Ramsay left us hanging before the baseball playoffs started, and asked Trev to step forward? He just sent him back to the blue team….as if we didn’t all see that coming.

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Hell’s Kitchen: one crazy left

“Hell’s Kitchen” is barreling toward the finale already, but wait….now there will be a 2-3 week break for playoff baseball. Anyway, when they resume in early November there will be 8 contestants left and they will probably keep up with the two-episodes-in-one thing until just after Thanksgiving. Either way, here is our rapid-fire recap of last night’s doubleheader:

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Hell’s Kitchen: they can’t send all the crazies home, can they?

Last week after Raj was eliminated from “Hell’s Kitchen,” the next logical thing to happen was to kick off Sabrina, the mouthy red teamer who seems to know how to cook but can’t for the life of her get along with anybody. But last night’s two episodes sent two different contestants home. Here is how it played out:

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Hell’s Kitchen: who are these people?

Mrs. Mike made the comment last week that she thinks a couple of the “Hell’s Kitchen” contestants are “plants.” Meaning, the producers put them in there to say things and act a certain way. Well, after two weeks of this show (and a grueling four episodes I might add), I think I agree. Raj and Sabrina are just certified nuts….and neither appears to really know what they’re doing or know how to get along with people in the kitchen. But I digress…here is a brief recap of last night’s episodes:

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Hell’s Kitchen: premieres with more fighting than ever

Every season, “Hell’s Kitchen” on Fox seems to up the ante when it comes to brash contestants who like to get in each others’ faces and who sometimes get in Chef Gordon Ramsay’s face. And somehow, despite the fact that they found 16 contestants among 10,000 applicants, they always manage to draw about 50% from the New York tri-state area. Seriously, if you watched last night’s episode, the New YAWK accents are quite dominant.

The show opened with the 16 hopefuls meeting new maitre’ D James. What, where the heck is Jean Phillippe??? Then they were blindfolded and sent to the new location of where they might be working if they win this season–LA Market. Ramsay was there to greet them and then sent them back to Hell’s Kitchen to prepare their signature dishes for him, in 45 minutes time.

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