Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Friday, May 09, 2008

Top Chef's Wedding Wars,Sweet Sixteen in Hell's Kitchen and Idol's Top Four becomes Three

You know things on Top Chef are really getting serious when they stop giving away immunity to the Quickfire winner. For the QF this week,Padma and Judge Tom brought back the "mise en place" Relay Race from last season(a good idea,that was one of the most exciting challenges I've seen). Two teams were set up via the TC knife pull (Spoon and Fork) and each team had to peel and section oranges,strip artichokes,cut two fillets from a monk fish and make mayonnaise by hand.

It was close but in the end,Team Fork won,which made Dale so mad that he punched a locker and screamed the F word out right in front of everyone. Way to show good sportsmanship,Dale.

Instead of having Restaurant Wars,the two teams were set up to have Wedding Wars by each group prepare the buffet(and cakes)for a couple that were to be married the next day. The winning QF team had first pick,so Richard,Stephanie,Andrew and Antonia became Team Bride while Lisa,Spike,Nikki and the ever delightful Dale were Team Groom.

Team Bride did very well here,as they created a "meat and potatoes" menu that the bride wanted. Richard was the unofficial leader and he made a lot of smart choices,such as the brisket of beef(which looked delicious)that wowed folks.

Antonia's mini pizza appetizers pleased the crowd and the judges as well. Andrew worked on the creamed spinach and crispy chicken(his own idea),which didn't go over so good. Crispy chicken is not something that holds up well after a few hours.

Stephanie's wedding cake was amazing,especially considering that she only had fourteen hours to prepare it. Most wedding cakes take days to make and decorate. Brava, Stephanie!

When Richard was declared the Challenge winner,the judges told him that there was a prize to be given,before he even knew what it was,he insisted on giving it to Stephanie. She decided to share it with him( it was a $2000 gift certificate from Crate and Barrel),which was beyond nice.

Richard really showed some character here. He even spoke up when Andrew was being criticized for the creamed spinach and admitted that adding star anise to it was his idea(totally true). Now,that's the kind of guy I'd want to work for!

Nikki,on the other hand,was the total opposite. At first,she seemed to be taking the reins here,by agreeing with the groom about having Italian food and being a real expert on it,which made Lisa and Spike more than willing to work with her.

However, once the cooking got started and she was being asked for suggestions,Nikki totally backed down. She even disavowed any creative control during the Judges' Table,which was not cool.

The only dish that anyone liked from Team Groom's side was Spike's Chilean sea bass. Dale was a total whiner,griping about how he did all of the grunt work that no one else would do (meaning Spike)and he and Spike had a charming little shouting match about that.

Lisa's groom's cake tasted good,but looked very awkward indeed. She probably should have made rounded layers instead of square. Despite Dale's temper tantrums,Nikki was the one sent home,which is fine by me. Dale is obnoxious but Nikki's cold feet about being in charge of the menu really threw the whole team under the bus there. Even Lisa tried to be a team player here,which gives her a few brownie points with me.

Out of all the annoying chefs on Hell's Kitchen, I can't stand Corey the most. From acting cranky during the Red Team's punishment detail(which was to decorate the restaurant for a Sweet Sixteen party with a "Sparklicious" party planner) to shanking it up with Louross in the hot tub(despite having a boyfriend),she was really working on my nerves. What really annoyed me was her snipe at how slow Shayna was,by saying "She's overweight,so she can't really move that fast."

First off,Shayna just had a baby(a three month old)and second,would you be saying that to Jenn,Corey? Jenn would pound you into the ground for that,I think. Corey is just awful all around:

Matt was no charmer,either,on the Blue Team. His face was stuck in permanent pout mode as he kept whining about how no one on his team would listen to him. Heck,even Eeyore would tell Matt to knock it off.

While Rosann screwed up the birthday girl's steak so badly that Ramsey had to take over,Matt couldn't make the fish right for the girl's mother after two times at bat. Bobby took over,to save the station,which was a good move on his part. Matt was too much,saying to Bobby,"You're acting like I'm doing a bad job here." You said it,Matt!

Shayna was sent to the chopping block by her team, despite Rosann's steak troubles(Ramsey called her out on the carpet,anyway. I love it when he does that)and Matt acted like a crybaby,complaining about being "bullied" off his station and that he has "no shame" about cooking with women. Ramsey took him up on that,by sending Shayna home and sending Matt over to the Red Team. Good luck,girls,you're gonna need it!:

American Idol's Top Four were pretty lucky to have two songs to perform for Rock & Roll Hall of Fame week,since Round One was godawful. Syesha's take on "Proud Mary" was so-so at best and Arhculetta just bored me with his "Stand by Me"(plus,that deer in the headlights look on his face is rather troubling).

David Cook's opening number was an odd choice. Out of 500 songs,he goes for "Hungry like the wolf"? I didn't even know that Duran Duran was in the Hall of Fame. Fortunately,he redeemed himself with song two,"Baba O'Reilly" ,which many will recognize as the theme to "CSI: New York":

It was no real surprise to anyone that Jason Castro finally went home,but at least he can have another Sanjaya award to pack in his bag. Choosing which one of his songs was the worst wasn't easy. Forgetting the words to "Mr. Tambourine Man" was pretty bad(even I can remember "jingle jangle",for goodness sake!)but Simon's dismay at Jason's take on "I Shot The Sheriff" was well justified:



Random Notes:

MOONLIGHT: There are only two episodes left this season,so if you want to have a Season Two,folks,give them the ratings! This show is certainly a bright spot on my
Friday nights and hopefully,it'll be back this fall:

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