Monday, July 13, 2009

Recap Roundup: Top Chef Masters Episode 4

Finally, a new episode and this week, another win from the sort-of-quiet female chef. Plus: magic. Lots and lots of magic. Also: Doogie! The appearance of NPH alone should be good for some bloggie love, right? Let's find out:

David Dust on the long-awaited return of Gail and her "friends": "Happy days are here again!! Oh how I’ve missed my Gail and her fabulous culinary chi-chis."

Cliffieland on the "drama": "And Chef Anita is the proposed target of a salt shaker-wielding saboteur Chef Mark. (It's that East Coast/West Coast, Cribs/Bloods thing again, you know.)"

Jordan Baker on the surprisingly entertaining Critics' Table: "Critics Table. The Chefs enter. K Choi says they had a 'magical evening.' Wah-wah. To the episode's credit, though, this is the only true clunker of the session--they really come alive this time through. I credit the presence of Gail/absence of Jay for this."

My Monkey Could Do That on the Elimination Challenge: "That’s it? I thought they’d have to make food that looked like other food. Like when NPH was on “Dinner: Impossible” and they made ice cream hot dogs and meatloaf cake. Mmmm, meatloaf cake with mashed potato frosting and tomato syrup."

TWOP on what we all really wanted to see: "the biggest problem with this episode? Not enough Neil Patrick Harris."

Time Out NY on the highlights: "We had special guest and magic enthusiast Neil Patrick Harris (better known as Doogie Howser, M.D., or that guy who snorted coke off a stripper’s ass in Harold & Kumar), plus an appearance by magician and NPH’s best friend, Ed Alonzo, a.k.a. Max of the Max from Saved by the Bell (milk shake, two straws—anyone?). Oh, and John Besh tried to make tableside horseradish and crème fraîche sorbet."

Top Chef Examiner on the Besh-bacle (Besh-saster? Besh-mare? Anyone?): "Besh who quickly became the clown of the group,making a good run at Wylie for 'Top meltdown.' Hey, when you fail, fail hard."

LA Times on James Oseland's post-game blog take: "Little did viewers know that Peel had guessed right: As he waited that extra minute to serve the fish, it overcooked in its wrapping. That didn't seem to bother Greene or guest judge Gail Simmons -- but Oseland discerned that it was not as perfect as producers would have led us to believe. Tricky. "

Meal Ticket on the all-too-brief and, dare I say it, magical appearance of Mr. Colicchio: "Tom C. checks in with the chefs in the kitchen of the Magic Castle (”It feels like Hogwarts,” says Lo), where they’re serving the guests and judges. He leaves too soon. See you in August, Tom C."

It Happened Last Night on Mark Peel's saving grace: "Sake is the bacon of booze -- it makes EVERYTHING better!"

Premium Hollywood on what's next: "Only two more initial rounds and then the real fun begins. I think Anita is going to be a really tough competitor for the other five in the finals, but we’ll see."

Onion AV Club on Lo's winning attitude: "Anita Lo didn’t need the edge of a perfect rating in the Quickfire; all things being equal, she’d have still survived a solid challenge from Peel in the Elimination. And she did it with the quiet, unassuming confidence (i.e. non-reality-show-contestant-y) of Suzanne Tracht in Episode Two. They should help make for a dignified and competitive Champion’s Round, if not a melodramatic one."

Reality TV Calendar on Anita's prescience, for lack of a better term: "Douglas works to create a spectacle by smearing “canned heat” on his coconuts in order to make them flame. Anita is nervous by this prospect."

Televisionary on the nightmare of a Quickfire: "The challenge, which recalls both Georges Auguste Escoffier and the more humbling aspects of this culinary competition series, really did put these chefs through their paces. I was surprised to see just how many of them really did underestimate the challenge at hand and didn't really consider timing or plating in advance."

Fans of Reality TV on NPH's much-discussed resume: "I also have to note that she introduces him as Neil Patrick Harris, star of How I Met Your Mother, but Douglas Rodriguez is immediately thrilled to be cooking for Doogie Howser, M.D. Poor NPH. I myself like to think of him as Lance the white intern from Undercover Brother. I think he’d appreciate that."

Thursday Night Smackdown on illusion...and banana scallops: "Lo is trying to create the “illusion of a scallop.” Just don’t make it out of bananas, because I won’t be able to take it. I’m going to start using this for everything: 'I know it looks like a grilled cheese sandwich, but I’m creating the illusion of fondue.'"

1 comment:

Martin said...

YO, Cliffieland - it's "Crips," not Cribs." Really, Dude.