Friday, August 3, 2007

Just Chillin'

Wherein Lurch becomes the voice of the author.
Did Lurch speak before this episode? Since I liked him, it can only mean one thing: he's going down soon. But, as usual, I'm getting ahead of myself.

Breakfast Montage, Get Thee Behind Me
This episode runs an extra 15 minutes long, do we really need this? I miss Lia too, but do we really need to see all the guys hanging around in their jammies talking about it? On the other hand, if we didn't get the montage, we would have missed Joey Bagadonuts saying that sometimes you have to throw someone over the bus. Let's point and laugh, and then it's on to the Quickfire...

Oatmeal? WTF? OATMEAL?
The guest judge is... really weird looking. Is he made of plastic? It's Rocco DiSpirito from The Restaurant. He's distractingly creepy.

The Quickfire is an ingredient identification bee. Lurch opines that Hung will be tough to beat, and that he is an arrogant asshole, which leaves me with nothing else to say about him. Chefs come up in turn to identify a mystery ingredient by either taste or sight. It's a massacre. Six chefs go out in the first round on weird stuff like yucca and taro root (I'd have guessed "horse turd" on that one). But then what's this? That's not "bowtie pasta", Casey, it's farfalle, and I'm bugging now. a) They're asking a chef to visually identify "bowtie pasta" and they consider it a challenge? b) How did they let her get away with that answer? and c) bowtie pasta? Seriously? Second Sara gets tahini, and guesses it correctly, but is knocked out because the first thing out of her mouth was peanut butter. And by that I mean that she said "peanut butter" first, not... ewwww! What's wrong with you? Hung gets the crazy mystery ingredient oatmeal. Are you kidding me? It's not even cooked, so it's totally obvious what it is. If I'd been knocked out by raspberry vinegar, when they are allowing bowtie pasta and oatmeal, I'd have stabbed someone before the day was done... and that's just one of the many reasons I'm not a contestant. My propensity for saying things like "horse turd" on camera is another that leaps to mind. After Joey's knocked out, he blames it on Padma's distracting hotness, and the "asshole" standing next to her. Nice!

Oh! And Lurch called it... Hung gets called up to taste a tiny bowl full of seeds and answers before he even tastes them. What a dick. Happily, he's wrong. Lurch laughs and calls him a douche. Again, I have nothing to add.

In the end, Casey At The Bat gets immunity again. The Talking Dog had to visually identify a bowl of round green things as Japanese Eggplant and failed, while Casey had to taste... roasted red bell peppers? Schwa? I love Lee Anne and everything, but unless Padma and Plastic Man royally screwed things up somehow, the difficulty level of the challenge was shockingly uneven.

Did this remind anyone else of the booze-fueled junk food taste off from Season Two? That was really funny. The only thing funny about this was Lurch.

Oh, and just for the record: that wasn't a cheese slicer, it was a cheese planer, dumbass. I know. I've been to Wisconsin. How the hell do you cook a cheese planer, anyway? Weren't they supposed to be identifying ingredients?

Hey, Mambo! Mambo Italiano...
Ah. It seems that Recycled Rocco is a shill for Bertolli frozen pasta. Those commercials are going to account for the rest of the extra 15 minutes, aren't they?

To the knife block! The chefs draw knives to form 5 teams: Hung and Joey (Go Team Asshole!), Tiny Bald Howie and Second Sara, Sara and the Talking Dog, Lurch and Tre, and Last Mohawk Standing and Casey At The Bat

Each team has to make frozen Mediterranean meals that can be cooked in 10 minutes and then unload them on customers at a grocery store. The winners each get a trip for two to Italy. Sweet! The chefs get some time to examine an actual frozen meal in the kitchen... because they've probably never seen one before. They will then go shopping with a hundred bucks to make 15 meals. When they get back, they have two hours to cook, they'll freeze them over night, and then have an hour to package the frozen meals the next day. An hour to pack 15 meals into a cooler? That should tell them something. For the most part, it doesn't.

Hung likes his team's chances because he "understands the science" of freezing food, and Joey's Italian. Oh please, do drop some science on us, Hung.

During the shopping segment, Tiny Bald Howie launches into a semi-coherent rant about tricolor fusilli, and thinks Second Sara is an idiot for suggesting it. Has Sara mentioned that Tiny Bald Howie is a bulldog recently? They're getting along so well. Howie's mancrush Joey, however, thinks tricolor fusilli is the shit, and Hung goes along with his new Italian buddy. I take my nickname back. Go Team Coattails! It looks like Hung is going to try to ride Joey through this challenge like a tiny obnoxious jockey. Now, if Hung can get his monkey to ride him while he rides Joey, then you've got a show... or a video that belongs in that special section at the back of the store.

I may need therapy.

Oh my god! Hey, Science Boy, did you just double dip? What the hell? I tell you, if I saw Hung dip a spoon in the sauce, put it in his mouth, and then put the dirty spoon back in the sauce when he's cooking for me, they'd have to x-ray the little bastard to figure out the best way to remove it from his colon. The constant stream of sweat from Tiny Bald Howie into the food is nasty, but double dipping? That's on a ho... nuvva... levvo. Oops. Wrong channel. Watching this season, it's hard to believe that the first person to ever get eliminated on Top Chef got sent home for just dipping their finger in the sauce.

Tre and Lurch have figured out that they have to freeze everything separately, and Tre is so damned excited about it that he's practically wetting himself. Hung figured it out and wants to make the little sauce cubes like in the Bertolli, but Joey bulls on through and dumps the sauce on the pasta, just like he's packing leftovers for lunch. Hung lets him do it. I wonder how that'll work out for them?

The next morning, 4 of the teams pull their baggies from the freezer, drop them into a cooler, and spend the next 55 minutes watching Lurch and Tre. I wonder if they realize that they screwed up? (Actually, if you listen carefully, it turns out that Mohawk and the Batter did package their sauce separately, but everything else is a big lump, and the Talking Dog and Sara packaged their parmesan and pine nut toppings in a "flavor packet", which you and I probably call a "zip-lock") At the store, Lurch and Tre sit around watching the others try to thaw their bricks of chow, then finally get started, busting out their food in half the time allotted. Mohawk and the Batter are the first to unload all their food on customers, closely followed by Tre and Lurch. I'd tell you what happens with Brian and Sara, but they're getting no airtime this week. Maybe if they had an hour and a half... Second Sara and Howie finally unload three of their 15 meals, and it's Italian Joey and his tiny jockey Hung bringing up the rear, unable to give away even a single box of their inedible mush.

Armagideon Time
The best are called in and it's Lurch and Tre's Truffle Butter-Kale-Parmesan-Tomato Linguine vs. Casey and Mohawk's Pesto and Meatballs Orecchiette. As they walk in, check out Mohawk's outfit. At this point I'm forced to quote one of my favorite Venture Brothers episodes: Are those giant shorts or tiny pants?

If Tre says "I.Q.F." one more time, I'm going to brain him with a meat tenderizer. The judges say "one of those metal meat hammer thingies" would also be acceptable.

The dude with the Lee Press-On Hair asks Casey and Mohawk again if they tasted their food, and still doesn't believe them. He loved their pesto, but his meatball was still a little frozen in the center. Damn, thassa chilly meataball. In their defense, we did see them sample their food at the store.

"Frozen meatball" trumps "crowd favorite", and Lurch and Tre win. They send back the losers and Sara and Brian wonder whose leg you have to hump to get a little screen time here.

Hung is in the bottom again, and for once he shuts his yap... for a few seconds. Once the questions start, however, he reverts to form and throws Joey over the bus. Now, to be fair, it was pretty much Joey's insistence on freezing the sauce with the pasta that hosed them. Hung tries to have it both ways, though, and says that he isn't trying to blame their failure on Joey... while trying to blame their failure on Joey. The judges call him on this bullshit. Joey defends himself by saying that he's a big dumb guy. Um, Joey, this helps you... how exactly?

OK, Radicchio, let's you and me take a little Logic Break, shall we? If the dish was a complete disaster, and Second Sara didn't have anything to do with it, shouldn't that be a mark in her favor? See how that works? Because, you know, if she was responsible for the dish and it sucked... Here, let me draw you a diagram. I'll take a minute or two while you think it through.

You probably didn't think of this when the episode started, but if you've been drinking a shot every time you heard the word "bulldog" during this episode, you're as drunk as the Pogues right now. Try it during re-runs and let me know.

In the waiting room, Tiny Bald Howie is, and this should come as no surprise to anyone, still being a jerk. Sure, he can be a graceful winner, but he's a bad, bad loser. Lurch gives Howie a little shit, and Howie blows up. It is kind of a dick move for the winner to hassle someone facing elimination, but Howie was still the bigger asshole here. And when you take into account how big Lurch is and how little Howie is, then... carry the one, multiply by... I don't know. It has something to do with density, right?

Honestly, I thought Second Sara was probably going home because of the way Radicchio went after her. He was like a... what's that dog again? The ugly one with the flat face? Never mind, It'll come to me... Joey was my second pick, though. If you can't give your food away, you're pretty much boned.

The judges surprise me by actually caring whether the food was edible. Hung has the producers' They Shoot Horses, Don't They? immunity this round, so Joey Bagadonuts is outta here. Everybody hugs, Joey has a good cry, and they won't have Dick Nixon to kick around any more... Wait. What?

Lurch got a lot of air time tonight and he was surprisingly funny. I bet they can him next week.


BeckEye said...

Ok, I can't read this because I missed the show again. I think this is the 2nd or 3rd week in a row. I have to wait for the next marathon, which, if I know Bravo, should be airing any minute now.

By the way, you should enter my newest caption contest. You were SO close to winning last time.

vikkitikkitavi said...

My favorite part was the exchange between Rocco and Chef Radicchio about truffles:
R: They're Italian!
CR: They're not at all Italian!
R: They grow in Italy! I've eaten them in Italy!
CR: They're Mediterranean!
R: What the fuck does that mean, Chef Reality Show Loser?
CR: Listen you frozen pasta shill, if you want so bad to be Wolfgang Puck, why don't you do what he did and kiss my hairy ass!
Ted Allen: Spoken like a bear icon...

Natalie said...

I hearted this episode big time. Everything was so incredibly funny and they got rid of Joey who is so stupid that I can't even stand to watch him. In reading your recap I couldn't even remember who Brian and Sara were. Oopsie.

deadspot said...

Oooh! Becks, you should read the recap so you can try the drinking experiment when you watch it. I mean, you'll spoil the ending, but then again, I'll have the answer to my questions so we... both... win?

That was good, Vikki. I love it when the judges squabble over stupid stuff. I hope they're better at cooking than geography.

Lurch was killing me this episode. Of course, once I said I liked Lia, she was doomed...