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And THIS Is Why I Love Reality TV: Hell's Kitchen? Hell Yeah!


– Chrstina M. Rau / GatsbyGirl

Hell’s Kitchen is no longer simply a hip cool neighborhood in New York City. It’s also the hip cool show that’s back on Fox this season. Chef Gordon Ramsay is all frowns and screams, just in time for some summer fun.

This is why Hell’s Kitchen rocks. It’s so completely cheesey with the Hell motif. Lots of fire graphics. Then there’s fire in the kitchen with lots of steam and smoke. The restaurant is red and dim, just like Hell. Chef Gordy has red hair. Or is it strawberry blonde? Let’s say it’s red so we can up the cheese factor. And he screams a lot, just like Satan!

Remember “The Restaurant”? Remember Rocco de Spirito? Know why that didn’t work? Because no motif. No hellfire and brimstone. No smell of sulfur. Only the smell of expensive cologne and Mama’s meatballs. You know why Hell’s Kitchen is back? Because people like to see other people get yelled at, and the kitchen is a fun place to do so.

To tide us over on the behind the restaurant scenes, Top Chef over on Bravo this past year was sort of like Hell’s Kitchen Lite. Top Chef gave us Tom Colicchio, the sexy bald man for whom I pined. He’s a cool headed chef with his own restaurant with signature sandwiches. He gives bad reviews but he’s still so dang loveable all the time.

On Hell’s Kitchen, Chef Ramsay runs a military-type operation with no glimmer in his eye or chuckle on his lips. Usually, the good editors at Fox are blurring out his lips because he’s swearing at someone. Curses galore roll out of his mouth every other minute! The kitchen is steamy. The wannabes are miserable. Everyone is sweaty, and one drips sweat into the dish he’s preparing. Guaranteed, at least one other person has done that in that kitchen and did it without being caught. Sweating into food is gross, like finding hair and bugs and fingers. So it makes for some great entertainment, especially when the wannabe chef ADMITS IT. He explains, “I’m a schvetzer.”

The restaurant service is less real and more contrived this season because it’s not new. That’s the one downfall here. People go there knowing that they’re not going to get food. They go there to see Chef G blow his top. To hear him scream at people. To maybe be screamed at by him when they complain that they’re not getting their food so they can go home and tell their friends, “Guess who yelled at me this weekend! No, really, guess! Hey, where you going?”. To feel better about themselves that they don’t have to be slaving away in the kitchen and still get to be on tv. To have a few seconds of that fifteen minutes everyone is guaranteed. To hear in person Gordon Ramsay yell SHUT IT DOWN! Honestly, that’s the only reason I would go. That’s the main reason I watch the show. I long for the SHUT IT DOWN. For some reason, it makes my night.

However, not all events are Hellish in Hell’s Kitchen. When someone does good, Chef G points it out. When sweaty man cut a bunch of good steaks, he received a “well done.” When scrubby hair man made a tasty dish, he got a “good job.” That’s what all the chefs strive for. A few seconds of congrats.

The sweetest side of Gordon Ramsay came out twice this year already. One of the chefs, one he particularly likes, burned her hand pretty badly. I mean, it was purple and red and gushing. He grabbed her and shoed her hand under the faucet and spoke in low tones. Then he took all the ladies out for some red wine and conversation via a helicopter ride. During the dinner, when someone calls him chef, he says, “It’s Gordon.” Yup, he’s a person when he steps out of the kitchen.

That’s what makes him sexier than Tom Colicchio. Did I just say that? I suppose I did. I suppose I find that men who are complete pricks and then treat everyone like heaven are even better than men who are nice all the time. And what does that say about me? Heehee. It says that I appreciate good entertainment. What does it say about Gordon Ramsay? He’s overly passionate about quail and cabbage and whatever else comes out of his kitchen. What does it say about Tom Colicchio? He’s married and jolly and loves his job too, and knows that you don’t have to treat people like crap to get what you want. Still, Gordon Ramsay makes for a hell of a lot of entertainment. And Rocco di Spirito? Well, sexy ended for him as soon as he started that show and showed off how much he loved “cooking,” aka, moving about the dining area to take pictures and nuzzle himself in ample bosoms. Note to all wannabe chefs—while nuzzling ample bosoms may be great fun, it is not conducive to running a successful restaurant. Success is all about the food and service.

Chef Gordy isn’t the only source of entertainment here though. To encourage drama between chefs, the show makes the best chef on the losing team choose the two worst chefs from that team to be up for elimination. So it’s another compete against each other while working together scenario. But here’s a great tid-bit. This past week, Chef Ramsay eliminated someone who the wannabe chef didn’t even choose. What does that mean? It means that Chef G doesn’t give a crap what the contestants think. He’s going to do what he wants to do, period. Paranoia should sink in now for all of them.

So people love the moodiness. People love the in-fighting, scheming, and sarcasm. That’s a given as all that is present on so many other shows. People love the cheesey motif of being in Hell. Apparently, Hell is the West Coast. People love prickish behavior. But here’s the best part of Hell’s Kitchen. Gordon Ramsay takes the coat of the losing chef and doesn’t just hang it on a hook, he slams it down on a meat hook so that it rips. Heehee. A bit psychotic, but also very entertaining.

[b]And THIS Is Why I Love Reality TV[/b]: Lots of food without the calories but extra entertainment. The restaurant world is a world that not many people get to see, and now everyone can see the extreme psychotic end of it all.

The Restaurant made me hungry for my grandma’s meatballs (the only red meat I eat). Top Chef made me hungry — the chefs on that show cooked up some pretty amazing food. Hell’s Kitchen makes me hungry for more Hell’s Kitchen. It’s what entertainment is all about. Now if they can just get some food out to their diners.

Got a good recipe? Email me: Christina@realityshack.com or visit me at http://christinamrau.blogspot.com.


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