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Nov 1, 2006 05:44 PM

Anyone else notice the disclaimer run at the end of Top Chef?

Very states that some of the judge's elimination decisions may be discussed with the producers AND also that Bravo Network may be consulted as well.

So much for "reality" TV!

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    1. re: MMRuth

      Thanks, I missed that thread somehow.

      1. re: bogie

        No prob ... and didn't mean to be short ... just in the midst of doing something else!

    2. The original comment has been removed
      1. I think this disclaimer is standard for all the "reality" shows.

        1. Surely you don't think there's much reality in this show to begin with. The selection of contestants, the challenges they're given, the spats they get into with each other and the comments they make -- all are carefully mapped out by the producers/directors and doctored by a handful of writers, supposedly to make the show more interesting. I mean, the fact that a "reality" show has writers in the first place tells you all you need to know.

          The height of this, to me, was the episode last night where Otto supposedly "stole" a case of lychees. It made no sense at all. Why would he do that 1) with the cameras running, 2) when the show is paying for the groceries? Answer: It was contrived to get rid of him and maybe add some texture to the show. It was also an insult to the intelligence of anyone watching.

          7 Replies
          1. re: Mr. Cookie

            The cooking challenges are real enough.

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              Sorry, meant to post my comment below here in reply:

              In terms of one team matching its cooking skills with another, agreed. But I think they're probably told what to prepare. And I think certain chefs are told to botch certain things, too, to create "drama." It's really impossible to know -- and therefore impossible to trust the show -- but the recent drive by reality show writers in Hollywood for better pay and benefits revealed a lot of inside stuff about these shows. And none of it pointed toward them having any integrity

              1. re: Mr. Cookie

                Other reality shows, the contestants are mostly wannabe actors and/or models.

                I'm deeply skeptical that any Top Chef contestant would throw a challenge at the producers' request. These are highly competitive individuals whose careers could get a big boost from the prize money and publicity that come with winning.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  Well, I think it's possible. I do think that the contestants on Top Chef are actual cooks, but it wouldn't surprise me if some had leanings toward acting, too. Another poster noted that there are gradations in the reality shows, with some having more reality and less manipulation than others, and I think that's true, too. Top Chef may have less than some, but it's there, and because it's there, one can't know quite where it stops.

            2. re: Mr. Cookie

              The 'writers' on reality shows are really more along the lines of editors - they take the footage they've got and massage it into a story line, which is only fractionally less dishonest than telling people what to say in the first place. There's been a lot of coverage of this since the Top Model writers went on strike.

              1. re: Mr. Cookie

                and add "heavily and carefully edited" to the mix. Viewers are lulled into thinking they're seeing live action when these shows are as strongly script-driven as your favorite sitcom.

                1. re: toodie jane


                  I'm not sure what you mean. Do you really think these reality shows are scripted in the way that sitcoms are? Edited, yes; scripted, no way.

              2. All Reality shows are "gamed". Producers angle things, prod or handicap contestants for faux drama, the best antipiated storyline and result. Not very real except the contestants aren't professionals.

                2 Replies
                1. re: ML8000

                  Exactly, I couldn't agree more. Many -- perhaps most -- of the contestants on these shows are would-be full-time actors, too. There's actually a bar in Hollywood where many former reality show contestants hang out and give each other moral support for trying to find another acting gig.

                  1. re: Mr. Cookie

                    Hahaha, the reality show contestant's bar would make a really good little and weird documentary.