By Flipit|Sunday, October 14, 2007 | 3:17 am | 11 Comments
Another season of Top Chef has come to an end, but there are still lots of questions left unanswered. Why did Cliff get so violent with Marcel? Why did Frank drink so much? And how in the HELL did Ilan win this thing? Wait. Sorry. That was last year. There wasn’t too much drama this season, just a lot of passive aggression and, gasp, cooking. Don’t worry, though. This cast may not have given us fireworks, but it’s the most sensitive group to date which means there are lots of hurt feelings that need to be (quietly) talked out now that all’s said and done. God, please let me see Baldhawk cry. Love, Flipit.
Aw, Dawson. Let it out.
Back to slice and dice the contestants while wearing the biggest shit eating grin on his face you’ve ever seen is Andy Cohen. My friend Amanda asked me if the host was the same Andy Cohen that played Chunk in the movie Goonies. No. Chunk is Jeff Cohen, who grew up to be a kinda fat, happy, entertainment lawyer. The Bravo host is Andy Cohen, the evil Bobblehead from the last reunion show. Got it?
The show opens with a touching short film about a little boygirl from Little Vietnam who knew he was destined to be Top Chef one day. As Hung puts it: “When I was little, I watch cooking show instead of cartoon”. Hey! That’s how I knew I was gonna be a recapper! Instead of play with the other children I make fun of them. Hung tells us how he used to go out to eat at restaurants with his family and then come home and replicate the meal. Like one of those freakish little children who can hear a song on the radio and then recite it perfectly on a viola. Impressive? Yes. But admit, deep down we all know that kids like that are just wrong. Hung’s father must have been like “listen, kid. I just escaped from mothuhfuckin’ Vietnam. Could you give the Julia Child bs a rest and make me a peanut butter sandwich?”
Next, we are treated to a montage of Hung jumping out of bed in the morning like his ass is on fire and scurrying through every challenge frantically asking who moved his cheese. Dude, the cameras are on. We know you’re dedicated, but could you at least wait to jump up until your morning wood is soft? There might be children watching this show instead of cartoon!
Mmmm. Yeah. Cooking yeah sautee sous vide monkey marinate oh yeah…BUZZ! TIME TO WAKE UP!!
The other contestants referred to him as “Speedy Gonzalez”, “Energizer Bunny” and “Asshole”, but I prefer “Asian Tranny Running From a Pickup Truck Full of Angry Frat Boys Down Santa Monica Blvd.” This whole Dung montage is just adorable. Remember what a little boogar he was this whole season? Everyone just laughs and laughs through the clips of this guy acting like a complete asshole, and you can’t really blame them because it’s all edited together like a heartwarming sitcom, complete with goofy horns and silly faces. No one is more amused than Hung himself.
Music from the Lifetime Original Movie “Woman Who Learned Her Lesson” soundtrack plays as we flashback to Hung’s final speech at Judges Table. You remember it, cuz it was like last week. Soul mom cooked dad escaped from Vietnam soul heart deep soul glow heart heart. Moral of the story? SOUL. Hung laughs and high fives himself as he watches. This montage should win the Acadamy Award for Excellence in Shady Editing. There’s so much Vaseline on the lens in one shot that Dung looks like Pia Zadora.
Miss Zadora, I loved you in Voyage of the Rock Aliens!
I have to give Baldhawk credit for being the only one to look like he’s gonna barf. Bobblehead asks the group if Hung deserved the prize, and they (almost) all answer yes. Baldhawk takes the floor and says that this was such a great season that they all deserved to win and any one of them could have. Sorry, but no. He’s trying to sound all sweet and complementary, but squeeze this bitch just little and sour grape juice will leak down his cheeks. “It doesn’t matter who won!” Sorry, but uh-huh. The person who wins gets a lot of money and photo shoots and attention and love. You get nothing, Baldhawk! Move on! His sad speech reminds me of my favorite bumper sticker saying ever:
“You’re special. Just like everyone else.”
Bobblehead asks Hung how he feels about the audience thinking he’s an asshole. He cursed. Oh, Cohen, you’re edgy. Dung gives the predictable “it’s just a competition and if you want to be successful in life you have to piss some people off” spiel, and Baldhawk counters that it’s a competition to see who’s a true chef, and a true chef would help the chef next to him. No, that’s the true line cook you’re thinking about. The Chefs I know help their weak peers by kicking their asses out of the kitchen so they have the chance to find a job they are capable of doing without whining and failing. No one respects a ship captain that can’t swim, dude. Buck up.
Was the decision easy? Gail says that it took them all night and three cases of pinot to reach a decision. They sat on that mountain and debated for hours. I am so sure. Notice there was not footage of this arduous process. I imagine the mountain top all nighter involved more partying than deliberations. It’s just more fun to ponder a topless, slurring Gail Simmons “WOO-HOO!”ing her way through a sloppy game of quarters. She says that the chef’s personalities have nothing to do with the Judges’ decision, and Daddy Tom says that at the end of the day, the score was two to two so they had to eliminate the bottom dish. It was, by far, Baldhawk’s. BH shrugs and nervously giggles. “I fucked uuuuup!” Yes, and that’s why you lost. Will you stop being a petulant little bitch, now?
Bunny Foo Foo is on the hot seat next. I have to say, she looks really good. She has toned down the Rachel hair and found a good bronzer. Isn’t that winning, really? Bobblehead notes that she was great during the whole competition, so why did she suck so hard in the finale? She says that she has a job outside of Top Chef. What the hell does that mean? Doesn’t everyone? She was concentrating so hard on her work at home that she lost. Everyone in the room coughs a mental “bullshit”, so she continues that she is the kind of chef who likes to take her time and really think her food through. It freaked her out to have to come up with a menu in thirty minutes. Uh…wasn’t the whole SHOW like that? Foo, just say “I choked” and call it a day. I know it’s hard for these Chefs to get defeated by a prick like Dung, but come on, guys. He kicked your sorry asses fair and square.
Failure looks awesome on you, Foo!
Gail says that she really killed on the Quickfire, so it wasn’t a total disaster. She’s got soul! Oh, Dung, don’t look jealous. Next, Bobblehead asks the chefs how they felt watching themselves on TV. Howie says he wishes he hadn’t been such a jerk, and Bobblehead pounces. Why so sweaty? Why don’t you wear a bandana? Did you sweat in your food? Howie looks embarrassed and says he’s not paying attention to his body when he cooks. Or ever. Daddy Tom cracks that at least Howie’s food wasn’t unsalted.
Oh, yes he did!
Cohen leaves him alone and moves on to CJ. The sexual tension between him and Foo Foo was undeniable. WHAT?!? What the hell is this? Foo seems a bit sexually tense and CJ looks tensely sexual, but never the twain shall meet. Are they ever going to start dating in real life? Foo says that CJ’s idea of creating sexual tension is asking her to make sure his David Hasselhoff shirt us unbuttoned enough, and it grosses her out. LOL, Foo. Plus, I suspect he’s kind of a raging homo. As if to confirm my theory, Ted Allen pipes up. “You guys should make oooout!” Montage of CJ being adorable and hilarious and really tall. OMG, did you guys know he survived cancer? Scar says she likes CJ’s height because she is so tall and thin that it’s hard for her to look up at most men.
Who wouldn’t fall in love with a scalp like that?
Apparently, CJ also said “oh big time” a lot. I never noticed that, and have a feeling that this group of clips was thrown together when the producers rejected the first smart ass editor montage of “I survived cancer” closeups syncopated with sad horns. Or it was thrown in to sell t-shirts. Sure enough, at BravoTV.com you can buy your own “oh big time” shirt!! Honestly, I think “had a ball” woulda been better.
Bobblehead wants to know why Baldhawk got so excited when Scar woke him up, and Birdsong says leeringly that she wishes she had been there for that challenge. Oh, Birdsong, me too. In both reunion shows, she has shown more attitude than she did during her time in the competition, and I have a feeling she would have become more and more menacing with each episode had she not boned it on the bbq challenge. There’s nothing more entertaining than watching a funny bull dyke with raging testosterone unravel. Don’t believe me?
Get to your local library.
Scar and CJ fake flirt some more, and it’s dumb and gross. Ok, Scar, you didn’t divorce your Early Bird Special because you were banging Daddy Tom in the broom closet in between takes all Summer. We believe you.
I buy it.
And now it’s time to discuss the biggest controversy of the season. No, not Dung dropping the crawfish on the ground and leaving it there (it was a pretty scandal free year), Tre’s dismissal! How does he feel? He didn’t let getting chopped get him down, but you can tell he’s depressed because he’s crossed out the “p” and the “ion” in his tatoo with a razor blade and a magic marker. Now it just says GOTTAHAVE ASS. Aw. Tom and Scar banter back and forth about how winning isn’t about personalities or overall character, it’s about raw sexual heat that can’t be denied. Scar, get off of Tom so we can just get this over with! Anyway, at the end of the day, I think we all can agree that in the scheme of things, Tre got screwed.
Bobblehead asks Daddy Tom if he would ever have a cookoff with one of the contestants, and he says he would do it any day. Gail pulls out her Blackberry and texts Food and Wine as Tom says that he would choose to go up against Dung, since he’s the winner. Please, please, please make this happen, Bravo! Scar pipes up and says that she’s tempted to compete every time she announces the Quickfire Challenge, but she understands that what the contestants go through is verrrry hard work. Oh, who asked you? The beautiful chick in the bikini snaps that she would pay to see Scar try to outcook Clay, the suicidal kid that got axed the first episode. Down, girl! Beautiful women always turn on each other. She tries to backpeddle and say that she meant Scar should start with the first eliminated Chef and move her way up the chain and not that Scar’s a fake ho who boned her way to the C List, but it’s too late. I’m liking this side of you, girl in a bikini.
Meow! Did this awful Puritanical turtleneck actually give you a personality, or did it just make me see it for the first time?
Now that the claws are out, time for a montage of the Judges being harsh and the contestants getting snippy. This was by far the best part:
Dear Bravo, Please give Gail Simmons her own show. Love, Flipit.
The montage ends with Daddy Tom trying to earn points with Guest Judge Bourdain by telling CJ that his broccolini was “single-handedly the worst dish we’ve had in three years of this competition.” Ouch. That should be the quote on the back of the “oh big time” shirt.
Daddy Tom says that the Judges were harder on the contestants this year but he feels like they are on TV, so they shouldn’t suck so much. When they do, he gets disappointed and pulls out the belt. One of the hardest parts of the show for the contestants is waiting in the holding tank (which is apparently called “The Stew Room”. Punny!) for the Judges Decision. CJ passes the time by making up really lame songs, Joey snores really loudly…what do you do while you wait, Troll Patch?
I have to stand in front of my TV during this part because don’t want my dog turning into a pervert, and when I look back, Saran is doing the running man. Good Lord. Fast Forward. Bring the first couple of season’s casts back again so we can see some fighting. Bobblehead asks Clay what his favorite challenge was. Jesus Christ, Cohen!! That is so wrong! I’ve got twenty bucks that says Clay’s gonna pull a Dana Plato tonight. Troll(aw) starts to answer the question instead, but is suddenly shot in the chest with a horrible sweater.
Call Tim Gunn. This man needs a doctor.
Next up, a montage on all the juicy scandal that wasn’t aired. Finally! Some drama! Sad horns. They got nothin’. People flubbed in the diary room and had to start over. Call Page Six. The best part was when Tom got pissed because Scar and Gail kept slapping his hand away from his chin so he wasn’t always looking like he was trying to remember where he parked his car.
If a train is going twenty miles down the track and another train is going ten, how fast is the track moving?
We are about halfway through the episode now, and I have to point out that Ted Allen’s only contribution to the discussion so far has been “you two should make ooooout!” Come on, Queer Eye. Represent.
Bobblehead reads a real person question, which is a boring old “wow you guys were nice to each other this year!” and spices it up by mentioning that this may have seemed like the sweetest cast, but it was also the most two faced. Montage of the Chefs dissing each other’s dishes. They are pretty harsh, but they all have a point. Dung is awarded Wackiest Dish in Top Chef History for his cereal and coffee tribute to the destruction of the Care Bear and what it means for society. Sorry, Poopy Cheeto still wins in my book. Ted Allen asks Dung “Where do you get your mushrooms from? I want some!” Oh, Ted Allen. That was hilarious. When Troll Patch said it in the clips YOU JUST WATCHED. Man, get us a new gay guy. How bout that Chris Crocker fella? He shouldn’t be busy for too long.
Leave Hung’s dish aloooonnne!
Hung said that he picked a lame row in the grocery store and made the best of a shitty situation. Scar thinks that it wasn’t hard to be confined to one aisle, but it really sucked that they were only given ten dollars in their budgets. Howie opens his mouth to say something and Scar puts her finger up and snaps “of course you’re gonna protest. You didn’t make anything.” Everyone “ooooh!”s and snaps. Damn, girl. The ganja monster is off the hook tonight. Rock on. Howie looks like he was punched in the stomach. Poor guy can’t catch a break.
Oh yes she did!
Bobblehead congratulates Gail on getting engaged. WTF? Atta girl! You bagged one! Note to fiancee: don’t ever cook eggs for Gail. She’s difficult in that department. Cohen asks her if she was to pick any contestant from this season to cater her wedding, who would she choose?
Step off, Bobblehead.
Montage of the editors calling the chefs out on their crutches. Troll Patch only churned out seafood, Howie stuck to pork, and Hung introduced the world to his revolutionary tequnique: Sous Vide. He’s mapping his bf’s nerdy gimmick thing, but Sous Vide just doesn’t have the same ring as Monkey Spit Foam. Toward the end of this montage, Howie says “Sous Vide is culinary masturbation, to me.” Well said, Howie. Why didn’t I like you, again?
Hung sticks up for his technique. Some chefs use mere saute pans to cook, he uses science. You say potato, I say vacuum packed air bag. Sure, his use of Sous Vide on almost every dish was a bit extreme, but he learned a very important lesson from the drag queens back home in Little Vietnam when he was a mere young boygirl, and it led the way to his destiny. Of course the ladies were trying to instill proper hooking etiquette into the little boygirl’s mind, but he came out a winner all the same.
Bobblehead asks them if being on the show has expanded their culinary bag of tricks. Tre says that he was humbled by the show and appreciated all the feedback from celebrity chefs, which he is humble enough to be thankful for because he’s humble. WHY DID YOU CHOP ME BEFORE MY TIME?!?!?! Troll(aw) blabbers on about his passion for food, and says that he lives for food and all the contestants want to talk about with each other is food. Really? Cuz I wanna talk about why you’re wearing that tacky ass hat with that tacky ass sweater. I need food.
And where’s the f-ing PATCH?
Baldhawk tells Bobblehead that it was really difficult always being in the middle because you didn’t get any feedback. Oh, BH. Being in the middle is feedback. Dung says he learned a lot after the Judges dissed him for not having soul. When they said that, he found God and came alive inside just in time to win Top Chef. That’s some soulful shit right there.
Bobblehead takes us into commercial with a Chuck Woolery “we’ll be back in two and two”, hinting at a secret love connection among the chefs. I. Am. So. Sure. That would have been exploited the second it started. Even though I know this is a load of crap designed to make me sit through GLAD and NOT KENMORE ads, I cross my fingers and pray that this season wasn’t as vanilla as I remembered. Nope. The secret showmance was Howie and Joey. Duh. Those two were like Humpty and Dumpty. Shout snort heavy breathing cry shout snort. Thanks for that, editors. This montage is such a rip off of American Idol’s Cowboy Love Triangle that it’s laughable, and not in a good way. I commend them, though, for not throwing a “I can’t quit you!” in for good measure.
I have to admit, it’s kind of touching watching these two fight like two hogs in mud and then hug it out and get each other’s backs. The montage ends with Joey sobbing, saying it’s gonna be hard leaving because he’s gonna miss “some people”. AW!! Howie’s crying now! Wait, am I feeling something? I can’t tell any more. I’d like to think Howie is crying for his caveman bond, but I have a feeling he’s needed to squeeze out a few since Scar dissed him earlier. Or maybe it’s just heartburn. Whatever the reason, I am really feeling for the guy today.
Come on. Let’s hug. No wait. I’ll send a card.
He and Joey embrace and Bobblehead asks if they have been in touch since filming stopped. Joey, bewildered, says that this is the first time they’ve talked. Howie wasn’t sure if anyone wanted to hear from him after the way he acted on the show, but everyone’s been so nice since they reunited that he’s feeling all sorts of indigestion emotions. Foo Foo says that he’s much better this time around, and CJ says “nice bulldog!” So why the tears? Howie is way more comfortable hearing bad things about himself than he is hearing good things. When he gets complimented, it makes him emotional. Wait. Who complimented you again? Stop crying. You’re scaring me.
Bobblehead instructs Joey to show off his “memento”, so he stops blubbering and lumbers down center to pull up his pant leg. Troll(aw) shouts “Tat! Tat! Tat!” Hey! It was a surprise! Thanks for ruining his moment of glory, Troll(aw). Joey did, in fact, get a tattoo, and Tre looks amazed. Fancy, huh? That’s how tatts look when they’re done by professionals. Well, very inexpensive professionals.
Bobblehead, awkwardly reading from a card, asks if it was a choice between that tattoo and a tattoo of a heart with Howie’s face in it. Wah waaaah. Don’t talk to Ted Allen during commercial breaks, Bobblehead. He’s rubbing off on you.
So, Foo Foo, we noticed that every time you befriended someone they got eliminated. Are you cursed? Wow. Foo has not been happy during any of this episode, and the montage of every person she deemed her closest friend getting red x-es stamped across their faces while a buzzer sounds doesn’t help. Birdsong lightens the mood by pointing out that she was Foo’s roommate. LOL, Birdsong.
Then Robert Stack’s voice comes in and narrates a special segment of Unsolved Mysteries: How Did Baldhawk make it to the finals? Heck if I know. It’s called Unsolved Mysteries for a reason.
If anyone has any information about this crime, please call me.
Daddy Tom says that no one expected Baldhawk to make it so far, but with each passing week he got better and better at not sucking as hard as at least one other person. Baldhawk says that he was really at a low point in his life, and the show reinvigorated him. The culmination of his experience was in his wonderful final dish. He pauses until everyone applauds. UGH. This guy is way too big for his highwaters.
Ted Allen said his scallop and grape dish was one of the most brilliant dishes he’d ever tasted. Baldhawk nods earnestly, avoiding giving CJ, the guy who cooked that dish, any credit. And that is why Baldhawk can suck it, people. Oh God, more questions for him. Bobblehead says that fans wrote in calling him a “baldhawked sex symbol”. I want to see evidence. The real people want to know: What’s his type, and is he single? Baldhawk answers “beauty’s a lightswitch away”. LOL and Amen, BH. But seriously, folks, he really likes all men because they’re men and men are his type and any old man will do and can you believe it? He’s single! Step one on the path to getting a boyfriend: at least pretend you’re not a complete ho. Not that I know about getting a boyfriend from personal experience. I read magazines, alright?
And now, time to announce fan favorite!! Scar is the only one to guess it right. You have chosen Foo Foo, America! Congrats, Bunny! She looks slightly less pissed now that she at least won ten thousand bucks, but only slightly. Speech! Speech! “I’m very flattered. Thank you.” That’s it? That right there is why you lost, girl. Look on the positive side. You’ve really grown into that cut. What’s she gonna do with all that money? She wants to go to Thailand. Daddy Tom asks her who from the cast she would take with her, and she doesn’t hesitate in naming Peppermint Patty. So. Cute. PP giggles and hides her face behind a fan.
Dung, you get the parting words. What advice would you give to young chefs? He gets teary eyed and stammers. Tonight, Dung taught us to “cook from heart, expect unexpected, and never take less than five dolla for job well done.” And those, my friends, are words to trick by.
Ronnie Karam has been with TVgasm since 2006 , which has given him the opportunity to make fun of hundreds of TV's most loved and hated reality whores. His plan in life was to be Julia Roberts but that plan was stolen by, well, Julia Roberts. He'll get you one day, JULIA ROBERTS!! When not making himself giggle for the gasm, Ronnie performs improv and sketch comedy at IO West in Hollywood a couple of times weekly while using the lovely California days to audition for commercial roles such as "ADORABLE MEXICAN UNCLE". Seriously. He would like to thank Jesus, Buddha and Xenu for the blessings they've bestowed. The writers here are the best around, and he's honored to be associated with them. Find video archives at CankleTV.com, or follow on Twitter @flipit