Damn you, Tim Cuprisin.
Having never seen Hell's Kitchen before, I decided to watch this season to see how our local contestant, Suzanne Schlicht, fares. I also took into account that as I continue morphing into my father, I've begun really enjoying cooking shows and many of the other Food Network offerings (what this means is that in another 15 years, I will watch naught but QVC and HSN four hours per evening).
So combining a local contestant with enjoyment of food related programming had me sitting on my couch last night at 7:00 PM. (Side note; Kind of like when adults participate in conjugal bedroom activites while "Debbie and Donna Do Des Moines and Dubuque" plays in the background, I had a reheated plate of my bratwurst and sauerkraut bake on my plate as I began watching this cooking show.)
It took, oh, about 18 seconds before I realized the mistake I had made (not the bratwurst, dingus).
This is a horrible show.
I even tried to accept first that this show is on Fox, and second that the entire premise was for Gordon Ramsey to swear a lot. But who the hell casted 17 people who can't cook? What's with every single confessional including a bleeped f-bomb? Although I know it is Ramsey's schtick, if I had that many people who couldn't cook in my kitchen, I'd lose it, too.
What really frustrates me is that all of this crap is done on purpose... (1) The culling of the cast to 17 talentless, foul mouthed, hot headed dolts. (2) The director allowing every confessional to include a myriad of bleeped out cursing. (3, and probably worst) These "contestents" have to - there's no two ways about it - have to be coached to be insufferable. Why do I say that? The guy (I think he was cast only as a plant with no other purpose than to stir things up) who wants to punch out Ramsey and "ain't no one's b1tch" was asked a simple question once, twice and three times. Answering the damn question would have gotten Ramsey off his case. Not only was there no reason for the guy to go off, but unless that was scripted (or at least really, really hinted at) why is that guy even on the show?
You've also got a guy who Ramsey chose to work the "front of the house" making tableside scampi for the guests, and when the Matre' D asks to speak with him about his presence, the nutjob goes non-linear and they almost come to blows.
Yeah, I know this is on FOX. But why is this interesting to anybody? This appears as staged as professional wrestling. This is bad television. Not bad as in "You'll never go broke appealing to the lowest common demoninator" bad, more like "We think this is the kind of in your face programming that appeals to that elusive18-24 demographic that our advertisers crave" bad. It is somebody-thinks-this-is-good bad.
For a moment, allow me to mention Suzanne. Other than Ramsey not liking her risoto, she didn't make any major errors in the challenges, so she is likely to be around for a while. But what was she doing egging on that moron that was arguing with Ramsey for no apparent reason. I don't know her personally, but her character is just as unlikable as the rest of them. There isn't anybody that is being protrayed as likable. I am sure the producers will allow us to like somebody, but they couldn't let their season opening 2-hour episode be sullied with someone nice (or competent).
I want Suzanne to be eliminated next week so I don't have to watch this any more. Otherwise, let her win it because if I am investing a dozen or so Tuesday nights to this mess, at least there is a payoff.
I will probably watch this season to see how our local contestant does, but this is certainly not a show that I will watch in the future. Please, please, please... for the love of God, watch The Next Food Network Star on the Food Network. It is the exact same show as Hell's Kitchen, but written, produced and directed by people whose medications are well controlled. The contestants are talented, they are civil to each other, with some exceptions the conflicts are resolved respectfully, and the judges can be harsh and critical yet still respect the departed contestant. The challenges mirror Hell's Kitchen (for example, the contestants of The Next Food Network Star had to cater a swanky Miami Beach party whereas Hell's Kitchen has to serve a dining room full of people). But the difference is that the Food Network show respects their viewers. They are telling me "Tune into our show, you will enjoy it". And they deliver that enjoyment.
At 9:00 PM last night, I felt dirty. I took a shower but it didn't help.