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<  David Cook Forum  ~  “Top Chef Las Vegas” Season 6, Episode 6: TV Recap

Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 1:54 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 26 Aug 2009 Posts: 155

There’s always that inevitable turning point in reality TV shows, especially in competition shows, where the contestants divide themselves into Those Who Deserve To Be Here and The Other Ones. That moment arrived within minutes into last night’s Top Chef Las Vegas seasons [spam] episode, when the cheftestants, still smarting from Mattin Noblia’s expulsion, donned red bandannas in homage to the cute Frenchman. (There were that many red bandannas to go around? Really? Huh.)

It was no small dig at Robin, who is squarely in the Others camp, along with sweet but clueless Ron, Laurine and, increasingly, Ash. (Eli and Ashley drift between either camp, kind of like Juliet from ‘Lost.’) But it’s clear, based on force of personality as well as winning records, that Jennifer, the Volt brothers, Mike Isabella and Kevin are the dominant clique. Las Vegas seasons [spam]

The clique-y tension is only heightened when Robin wins the Quick Fire (take that!) with her “Angel vs. Devil” combo of apple crisp and arugula salad. “That’s a good way to win,” Eli cracks. “Tell people you have cancer.” He adds, almost under his breath: “Weak.”

Anti-magicians Penn and Teller arrive, perform a flashy trick with a lime and hand over the next challenge: deconstruct a classic dish. To deconstruct a dish is to take it apart into its fundamental pieces so that the consumer will put them back together on the fork. Sounds neat… and like quite the intellectual leap, which leaves even ever-confident Jennifer looking nervous. Las Vegas seasons [spam]
She had no need to worry: her flat iron steak with mascarpone bechamel and tomato sauce is ushered into the final four, along with Michael V.’s Caesar salad with parmesan gel. Bryan’s tuna pastrami Reuben Ashley’s roast beef and Kevin’s chicken croquette with Mexican coffee round out the finalists. The dishes manage to wrangle a smile from fire-breathing critic Toby Young, who is momentarily [spam] enough to stop sneering. Kevin takes the win, along with a new set of pans. Las Vegas seasons [spam]

Young’s bonhomie doesn’t last. He’s harsh on Ron’s paella, adding as an aside that people need to stop pronouncing these words as if they were Spanish or something. Guest judge Michelle Bernstein swiftly shuts him up, pointing out that she is, in fact, Latina. Not for nothing, but the double ll in “paella” is pronounced as a “Y” and not as an “L”. It’s not affect; it’s correct pronunciation. Tom would be laughed out of the kitchen for calling it “pal-ella”. (Kind of like Jennifer calling ceviche “seh-veech”?)

Young, who wears his Britishness loudly, grouses about Laurine’s fish-and-chips (not enough chips!) and Ash’s shepherd’s pie (where are the potatoes?). Laurine and Ash are saved when they explain they didn’t want to send out food (burnt chips in one case; gooey mashed potatoes in the other) that doesn’t meet their standards, but Ron’s soggy rice had no excuse. Goodbye, Ron. Las Vegas seasons [spam]
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