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Worst Cooks In America »
Another year, another season of Worst Cooks in America! This time around, reigning champ Chef Anne Burrell and Chef Robert Irvine are facing off to see who can turn kitchen zeros into culinary heroes. Sixteen of the country’s worst cooks came to NYC to train with Burrell and Irvine – and to compete for the show’s whopping $25,000 grand prize.
The show kicked off with the contestants preparing their signature dishes from scratch. This was, of course, a gigantic cluster fuck. Jeff ripped a chicken breast apart using his hands. Kelsey boasted that she gave her husband food poisoning – twice. And much to Anne Burrell’s dismay, Kat put WHOLE PEPPERCORNS in her nasty quiche.
Kelly, the quirky (translation: weird) blonde woman from New York, made a disgusting, shriveled up beef dish she called “boeuf” (the French word for beef). Unfortunately, it just ended up looking like little pieces of Sandra Lee’s liver on a bed of greens:
The producers really focused a lot on a contestant named Erika Rumsey, the heavyset blonde with the sob story (“wahh, I used to be a model until I gained weight”). If she looked familiar to you, it may be because she appeared on the CW’s reality show Beauty & The Geek back in 2005. I loathe mediawhores, and already question her motives for appearing on the show. Is she really a bad cook, or is she faking it to try to stretch out her five minutes of fame?
Worst Cooks In America »
The premiere episode of Worst Cooks In America left me with more questions than answers. In what dark culinary nightmare did they find these contestants? Could they really be that clueless about food preparation?
The premise of the show is simple: find the 10 worst cooks in America, and train them until they can prepare something that’s actually fit for human consumption. There are a few fundamental flaws with that, though. First, I’m not entirely convinced these contestants are really as awful in the kitchen as they’re claiming to be. What’s to stop these people from lying? It’s simple to fake being a bad cook, and I think many of them are doing just that. Come on now. Unless you just emerged from a lifetime in an underground fallout shelter, you know not to boil a whole chicken and slather it with American cheese.
Second, the show is clearly setting these awful cooks up to fail. The “training” they received in the first episode was a joke. Chef Anne and Chef Beau briefly showed the contestants how to make an intricate seafood dish, and then told them to go to their kitchen station and recreate it. If this show is truly about making people better chefs, why didn’t they receive some basic culinary tips… like, say, HOW TO USE A KNIFE? And if we’re to believe these people are as bad as they originally claimed to be, how did so many of them supposedly re-create dishes that were nearly identical in taste and appearance to the original?
And by the way, is Rachel Coleman a dead ringer for Velma from Scooby Doo or what? And how did she get my glasses from 8th grade? I thought I ran over them with my bicycle the day my mother let me get contacts.
Overall, I can’t shake the feeling that these contestants are just a group of people who are desperate to get on television. Blue team member Sophia Gettys posts videos on YouTube about all the different auditions she’s gone on. Red team member Rebecca Hooper actually has an AGENT, and has more headshots on her website than Tom Cruise. For the show to really work at the end of the day, it has to feel real. And right now, it doesn’t.
(Did you watch Worst Cooks In America? Did you like it? Will you watch again? Speak your mind, FNH! You know we’re the Food Network’s free focus group, so let’s hear it!)