Hell's Kitchen recap: Something's Fishy
After proving herself a poor judge of filets, Corey tries to shake things up by nominating good fellow contestants for elimination
Hello, my little flourless chocolate cakes, and welcome to the continuation of Hell’s Kitchen. I had soy chicken drumsticks for dinner tonight, and I’m still not sure why, so please don’t be upset with me if I take my overwhelming meal resentment out on Jason. You remember Jason, don’t you, kids? Bald guy? Sort of husky? Picks his feet before service? Hates women? Yeah.
I’m going to get this all out of the way up top: Jason is a pig. Jason is quite possibly the most reprehensible character this show has ever seen. Tonight, Jason belched out another batch of disgustingly sexist comments, and to be frank, I’d like someone to set him on fire. And then I’d like to stand above him while he stops, drops, and rolls…and apply mascara. I don’t even wear mascara, people, but if it prolonged his agony, I would put some mascara on before I put out his burning chef’s jacket. I think what pushed me over the edge was the glint in his eye as he spat, ”You can keep your f—ing house, ’cause we’re going to the ocean, bitches.” That wasn’t a glint of irony or humor. It was a glint of ignorant, entitled cruelty, and I’m not going to put up with it.
So here’s what we’re going to do: We are not going to talk about Jason anymore in this TV Watch. We are going to pretend he doesn’t exist, in the same way he refuses to acknowledge the equal abilities, intelligence, and inherent human value of the female gender. If he should choose to alter his behavior, we will once again mention his name — though given his complete lack of cooking skills, I don’t expect he’ll be around to ignore all that much longer. Meanwhile, should I need to cite him in order to adequately describe the actions of other Hell’s Kitchen contestants, he will be known simply as ”Toolsack.”
[Deep breath in…]
Let us now commence talking about tonight’s episode.
After the disastrous dinner service of last week, the men reassessed their game plan. Bobby, especially, knew he had to make some changes. ”I’m done layin’ back,” he said, assuring all of us that now the four-star general was coming out. Oh, now. Okay! Here’s your first mission, General: Get out of bed at 5:45 and pick all the wasted valuable food out of the garbage. In fact, how ’bout if you all get up! Yes, even you, Man Who Sleeps in Tighty-Whities, Man Whose Identity I Did Not Rewind in Order to Confirm Because One Glimpse of That Was Enough! Dig in there, kids! Pull out those unused scallops, those mounds of what looked like pig bladder! Let that trash squish between your bare toes! Feel free to dry heave, Jen! (PS: Nice lip gloss. You borrow that from Sharon?)
After the indignities of the trash pickings, our cheflings looked pretty exhausted. But their challenge for the day hadn’t even begun, so after showering, everyone reassembled in the kitchen to learn how to filet (pronounced ”fillit”) halibut. Now, I’m no fishmonger, but Mother of God, who knew halibuts were so freakin’ huge? I now have to add halibuts to the list of things to fear while scuba diving. (It’s a long list, including sharks, naturally, but also manatees and those fish that swim into your urethra.) The cheflings were told they needed to get as many perfect six-ounce fillits out of the halibut as they could, and once all was said and done (also, at the end of the day), both men and women came up with 41. It was the first-ever tie in aHell’s Kitchen challenge, and it ended with a tiebreaker where Ben picked out the single fillet that weighed closest to the aforementioned six ounces, defeating Corey, who missed it by a mile.
With their win, the men headed out to eat a lobster lunch on a ”100-foot superyacht” with Chef Ramsay — the first time Bobby had ever been on a boat, which is why I suppose he does not refer to himself as an admiral. The women stayed home and prepped fish for the night. Best moment of the episode: The men walked through the kitchen on their way out the door, and Jen instructed the women to get busy with the cleavers and make that fish fly, showering the guys in a sort of halibut ticker-tape parade. This led Matt to complain that they ruined his expensive cologne. But maybe if Matt didn’t coat himself with so much man perfume, he could have smelled the crap he gave Ramsay last week, and Chef wouldn’t have puked. Just a thought.
Time for service, and the traditional Confusing of the Menfolk. Chef Ramsay asked Petrozza to name the five appetizers on the menu. Petrozza couldn’t, so Ramsay kicked him out of the kitchen. (Pop quiz, hotshots: Name the five appetizers on the menu.) Petrozza went to study, came back, and now couldn’t name the desserts. Ramsay kicked him out again. This time Petrozza just sat upstairs muttering, ”I’m done. I’m done. I’m done. I’m done,” until Bobby came and shook some sense into him, buttoning his coat and sending him downstairs to try again. This time, thank God, the man could name the entrees, and Ramsay let him back into the kitchen, then opened the doors.
First problem: Craig and Rosann had been sent into the dining room to help Jean-Phillipe handle customers, but Rosann forgot to bring orders to the pass, and Craig hit a woman on the head with a chair. (I assume he was just too short to get the proper height on the thing.) Second problem: Everyone was making raw everything tonight. The men seemed best able to overcome this and actually managed to get half their entrees out to the room, but the women struggled mightily, largely thanks to the incompetence of Sharon, a.k.a. Barbie. Our ”room-service chef” really took it on the chin tonight, with Ramsay making comment after comment about her relationship to makeup. Look, Sharon had no clue what she was doing, sure, but I didn’t think she was wearing all that much stuff on her face today, and she definitely seemed to be trying to learn. Then again, our buddy Gordon’s never been overly nice to the girly-girls. Once he called her ”a showgirl with a feather coming out her ahhss,” I was pretty sure Sharon’s fate was sealed.
NEXT: Shutting down
The inevitable SHUT-TIT DOWN (which tonight was accompanied by an extra GET THE F— OUT) came when J.-P. brought a piece of raw fish back to the kitchen; ”Bad. Meltdown. Pathetic. Really pathetic” was how Ramsay summed up service before elimination. Still, the men got all those meals out, and so the women took the fall, with Corey — last week’s Simple/Plain/Blond/Boring girl, this week’s challenge goat and risotto hero — being named best of the worst. This really turned young Corey on (perhaps she is not complimented enough at home?), and she immediately went all Machiavelli on us. Seriously, it was awesome: No one was coming to her and begging to stay, so she decided to make a game out of it. ”You’re gonna take out the best, aren’t you?” asked Ben. ”I amthe best,” replied Corey. Aw, yeah.
Who’d she put up? Rosann, for messing up the orders? Sharon, for sucking? Nope: ”For strategic reasons,” she put up Christina, who is clearly a powerhouse, and who Corey felt had underestimated her. And ”for personal reasons,” she put up Jen, because ”she distracts me from doing my job seriously.” ”F— me,” exclaimed Ramsay. This is like some Survivor s—, I wrote in my notebook.
Think about it: For the most part, this show’s history has been dominated by the elimination of the most obvious weak link. Occasionally, they throw someone up there to try and mix it up, but that person rarely goes home. Tonight, Corey stepped up and called out two women who had no business being called out…and I loved it. Of course, as with Survivor, there’s always the danger of voting out too many strong players too early, thus decreasing your chance to make it to the merge — it seems the same danger applies here. Still, I appreciated Corey’s strategy. So did Chef Ramsay. But here’s the difference between me and Gordon, other than the fact that he’s a celebrity who spends most of his time on a massive power trip, and I’m a girl who ordered the soy chicken tonight because she thought it would be funny: Chef Ramsay ignored Corey’s strategy and kicked Sharon off anyway. ”F—,” said Corey. BRILLIANT! I wrote in my notebook.
If tonight’s ep was any indication, I think we’ve got one hell of a season ahead of us, bread puddings. Do you agree? Were you grinning as wide as I was when Ramsay went off the grid at elimination, or do you think he should have been forced to play by his own rules and boot one of the nominated women? Did Bobby redeem himself after last week’s lameitude by helping Petrozza? Could Ben be any cuter? How do you think Jen and Christina will retaliate against Corey? How would you retaliate? And can I ask that we adopt my No Toolsack Mentioning policy on the comment boards as well? NTsM for short!