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TNFNS - "Train" [Wreck] Challenge - spoiler

what a disaster.

they should have booted nipa on principle alone. did we learn nothing from last season's waffler? anyone think the judges just handed her a chance to pull an amy finley & win this thing? i get that they want to keep her around to potentially add some ethnic diversity to the network, but come on. the self-proclaimed "spice girl" hasn't a clue how to control her spices. last week there was no spice. this week it needed salt...and even bobby flay thought it was too spicy. um, hello red flag! i wonder how many more times she'll debate going home or question whether she really wants to be there.

i can't believe the dallas diva was in the top two, and apparently she's finally getting the hint that no one understood her bizarre initial culinary point of view. "beautiful basics" is much better, i wonder if she'll stick with it. she even got a thumbs up from bobby flay. i'm still waiting for the episode where she takes a dive in her stilettos.

and what's with jennifer? glazed baby carrots last week, and now bland french toast that even her 7-year-old daughter can make? [she said it, not me.] yawn. she's just so boring.

i'm also having a hard time watching kelsey. she's still got that possessed cheerleader thing going on, and her duck salad sounded too sweet. plus the judges said it was overcooked and overdressed. and she somehow made it into the top three with that!

the chefs all have a lot to learn about plating. most of it looked like slop. even aaron's winning dish, which potentially sounded good, looked really unappealing with that orange goo covering the steak. all i could see was chunks of orange zest. but was glad to see him come out of his shell and actually cook food that tasted good. and he definitely had the best line of the night:

"i'm black, i'm from camden...no way i'm playing a bank robber!"

or something to that effect.

i was sorry to see kevin go. i liked his personality, and with a little coaching from the judges he could have modified his point of view. adam should have gone home for the raw eggs.

as for getting a new "star" out of this crop...i think the food network is screwed.

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  1. I liked the way that they seemed to keep Robert Irvine's comments to a minimum.

    It is a disaster that's why I like this show so much.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Withnail42

      I found it amazing that this was taped after Robert Irvine's lie came out and that he won't be hosting next season. I think that Suzie chick said that they still liked him and that this episode had nothing to do with integrity/lying.

      This show is like a train wreck. You can't help not to watch -- kind of like Hell's Kitchen. Nipa got on my nerves so much. She probably was an overachiever growing up. So it's unfathomable that anybody should criticize her. She thinks very highly of herself. I would love to see an Indian cooking show, but not if she's the host.

      As much as I want to hose her, Lisa did well this week. If she polishes up her culinary point of view, she may be in the running. And Kelsey needs to tone it down a bit. She makes Rachel Ray seem lethargic.

      1. re: Miss Needle

        agree on lisa. i was not kind to her last week but she was much better this week. her point made sense, she was less annoying, her food was apparently good...

    2. I thought that Lisa did a good job this week. She really seemed to listen last week and take the criticism that was given to her. It seemed to work as she was much more articulate and together. She worked well with her group.

      I really think Mipa should have gone home - she doesn't take criticism well and just seemed to be upset that she wasn't the "spice queen," whatever that means. I agree with the previous post that it remined me of Amy, although Amy at least was torn between being there and being at home with her family. Mipa just seemed to be upset with the comments.

      As far as the challenges, there really hasn't been anything that could really showcase the contestants' talents. I understand that the job is one that has a lot of pressure; however, I think the challenges should reflect what they are actually going to be doing for FN.

      The show is most certainly a disaster - the only good host to come out of it is Guy. He is personable, funny, and a hoot to watch. He also seems to know his food.

      1. Lisa, Vulcan or Romulan? you decide....
        I do like Aaron. He definitely made his opinion known with his teammates.

        7 Replies
        1. re: bookwormchef

          Lol! Good call about Lisa... I couldn't place the look.

          Vulcans are logical and in control of their emotions.
          My vote is Romulan.

          1. re: dave_c

            Whereas to me she looked like the Thermian alien in "Galaxy Quest" who fell in love with the "Crewman Number Six", Guy Fleegman. ;-) You decide:

            Laliari - http://www.imdb.com/media/rm771921920...

            Lisa - http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_...

            1. re: LindaWhit

              lol! Another good eye for the sci-fi.

              Laliari was a good natured alien. I think Monk would agree with me that the Dallas Diva, Lisa, may not be as good natured and still have a sneaking suspicion she's more akin to a Romulan. :-) lol

              1. re: dave_c

                True - from a good nature/bad nature standpoint, Romulan definitely is the choice.

                But from a visual only - she's got the Laliari thing going on big time.

                1. re: LindaWhit

                  :-) Yes, she can readily answer that casting call for Galaxy Quest 2. She may not be TNFNS, but she sure has a future with sci-fi.

          2. re: bookwormchef

            I said the same thing! However, the more I watched I thought she looked like Ro Laren from Star Trek: TNG. Either way - a bit alien like.

            However, I was glad to see her get beyond the "Three C's" - Beautiful Basics seems to be a more workable POV. She didn't get on my nerves quite as much she did the first episode.

            1. re: Mushroom

              i'm completely clueless when it comes to sci-fi...but every time i see her i think 2 things:
              1) whomever is responsible for shaping her eyebrows clearly can't be trusted with a pair of tweezers
              2) i don't know if her golden glow is from a bottle or a tanning bed, but either way, she's gotta do something about those reverse-raccoon eyes.

              the combination of those two issues leaves her with a bizarre expression that's somewhere between quizzical & deranged...and i certainly couldn't look at that for an entire show, no matter how good her cooking might turn out to be.

          3. The food -- all of it -- looked disgusting.

            The contestants -- well, I don't think the term "star" applies to any of them. Where do they find these people? What criteria do you suppose they're casting for?

            It's going to be hard for the judges to stick with it, but even harder, I think, for the viewers (they don't even get paid).

            1. I don't know why ...

              They allowed Nipa to stay. They should have thrown her ass off of there.

              They kept Adam. The runny egg idea was insane. Even his teammate told him that. He should have gone second if not Nipa.

              They got rid of Kevin. As said, a bit of coaching and changing his POV is all that was needed. No way was he the worse.

              Stupid judging. I think Nipa is there for the same reason JAG lasted so long (until he won last year, sorta), the Food Network is so desperate to fill cuisine and etnic niches they'll kiss ass. If that's not the reason for keeping Nipe then I want a full explanation. (Hmm, wonder what the judges blog says about this one.)

              4 Replies
              1. re: HarryK

                The judges logs suggest that Nipa was a totally different person before the first two episodes, confident, engaging, yadda yadda. They also say she has a strong sense of who she was and how that was her cooking where Kevin was wishy-washy.

                Aside from the "they saw someone different" part, the rest still suggests that they didn't want to give Kevin a chance and only phrases it differently how much they want an Indian cusine cook. And so, as said, gave Nipa carte blanche so far to be a hissy fit diva unprofessional brat.

                1. re: HarryK

                  This is one of the reasons I love this show the judges say something about a contestant and eliminate them for that reason. Then they say the same thing about another contestant the following week and use it as the reason to keep them, even after they have thrown a hissy fit and stormed off.

                2. re: HarryK

                  Jag at least had charisma and cooking chops. I definitely feel they could have built a show around him.

                  1. re: HarryK

                    I would suggest a second reason to keep Nipa -- when there are volatile people on one of these reality elimination shows, it keeps viewers coming back. It certainly keeps the buzz going in places like this.

                    Most reality shows cast to be sure they have some unstable people in the mix because without them the show would be booooring.

                  2. My favorite part of the episode was in Nipa's team's cooking montage, when they had a clip of her saying something like: "Look, I just made a spice mix with like 8 different spices, and it only took me a minute because I'm so good."

                    I agree wholeheartedly with Withnail42. The disaster is the fun.

                    1. Kelsey is a bit hard to watch, but I also find her hilarious as someone who has lived too long in the Provo/BYU "bubble" where hundreds of Kelsey-types reside and annoy, and is looking forward to moving back to the SFBA.
                      Also, she is less crazy on her show:

                      1. Since the series is a disaster, it might be more entertaining if each food challenge could be modeled after a disaster movie. The Hindenburg, Titanic, Earthquake, Krakatoa East of Java, Twister, Armageddon.... ;-)

                        1. I couldn't believe it when Nipa said she won't cook fusion food! Wow - that should be enough for the judges to toss her right there - what kind of an audience for "authentic" Indian food only will FN have? Then when she walked out on the judges, should should be gone.

                          I thought it was crazy that the runny eggs guy was safe in the first group! It should have been him and Nipa left and Nipa should have been gone. The guy who was booted - his POV doesn't make a ton of sense (and I loved the line about what is so romantic about crostini!) but his dish did sound like it had some promise (albeit too sweet, as executed). Oh well.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: akq

                            I think the reason why runny eggs guy was safe is because they like his personality and he doesn't seem to be afraid of being in front of the camera. This show is more about finding a food personality. Actually, most of FN (except people like Flay) don't really have the cooking skills.

                            1. re: Miss Needle

                              TNFNS is a bit of a joke, IMHO. Has the winner ever become a "Star"? Last season Amy Finley's show was cancelled after six episodes. I didn't see a single episode. Was it on at 6am?

                              1. re: RBCal

                                I think they only "win" 6 episodes, so it wasn't cancelled as much as it wasn't continued. It was on Sunday morning, I think -- I didn't see any of it either.

                          2. i laughed at loud many times during this show - it was horrendous

                            will be watching next week :)

                            1. Nothing demonstrates more FN's drive for "personality" than this episode.

                              How much personality does one have to have that allows them to get away with serving raw eggs? They were still translucent when he was trying to plate them. This showed the FN's attitude towards food. That they would even consider giving a cooking show to someone who knowingly served something that could make people sick boggles the mind.

                              "The Spice Girl' throw a hissy fit and storm out because she did not like the feedback was getting and she 'has potential' and character.

                              Not sure when the episode was filmed but if it was after the truth about Irvine came out, then they allowed themselves to be represented by someone who at best is a sham artist. Why? Shouldn't they be just a little embarrassed by him?

                              I just wonder what benefit FN thinks that they are getting from these people? In the end it all boils down to the old equation: garbage in = garbage out.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Withnail42

                                Come on, Withnail42. Stop holding back. Tell us how you really feel! :-)

                              2. I agree with everyone that Nipa should have gone but probably kept for viewership. Kevin was one of my early favorites because he was funny but he did act like a clueless chef in this past episode. Back to Nipa, I think it's good that she tries to keep true to herself and cook Indian food, but in a team challenge, I hate seeing Lisa and Shane having to bend to her culinary point of view. Nipa should have done a creative way to blend some aspect of her Indian food with what the others were making as well. It was really my way or the highway (or in the case the tracks). That's why I don't like her. Plus, I don't really like eating Indian food so a show dedicated to that wouldn't really pique my interest.


                                1 Reply
                                1. re: singleguychef

                                  I totally agree. In the real world, she would have been history or not hired in a normal interview process. How would she ever succeed in the FN environment if she doesn't work well with others? I don't understand the judges at all. It is making me not want to watch the show. They already seem to know who they are keeping and who they are going to let go.