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Are you kidding me? Hell's Kitchen finale (SPOILER!!)

I don't get the reasoning behind giving it to Danny. He's young, cocky and wanted mounted fish on the walls. I thought that showing your cooking chops throughout the season, winning challenges, performing consistently well should be more important than the one who "learned the most" - although that is true about Danny. I still think Paula should have won, hands down. His restaurant looked like crap - and when GR was talking to him about it, it looked like Danny had no clue what Gordon was saying to him - the floors look like what??? LOL

And Lacey, I love to hate you. You are sooooo misguided. You have no clue what all this cooking stuff is about.

On to the next season!!

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  1. but L made for such good TV. I would have brought back Ji (surely her ankle was healed by then) but now that I think about it, it wouldn't have been fair to Ji.

    1. He made it! I'm glad he won. Because of Gordon Ramsay, Danny was given an amazing opportunity for exciting challenges and success. Congratulations!

      1. i agree totally. im still in shock over the results. Id go to Paula's restaurant first, easily, before Danny's.

        1. I long ago stopped caring about who won any of the reality shows I watch. If someone wins that I don't hate, I count it as a bonus. And this season of HK, I didn't hate either finalist.

          I find on most reality shows, the finale is usually the most boring episode. This was no exception. I think it took me 30 minutes to watch it. I FF'd through a lot of it.

          All that said, I have to say Paula's dining room was so much nicer. Danny, plastic fish? Really? I'm sure he won't have much input into the design at his new job.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sooeygun

            sooeygun, me too - that ffd button is VERY well used on my remote. get it over with, tell me who won, enough filler bs.
            seemed like GR was trying to find something nice to say about Danny's design choices, but he did do a good job running his brigade. Guess his food was a little tastier? dunno. didn't really care who won.

          2. I was very glad Danny won. I think his taste in designing a restaurant is mostly a product of his young age and the fact that he hasn't been exposed much to the world, it's probably all he knows in his limited experience. Designing a restaurant has nothing to do with being able to be a good cook, jeez.

            I thought Paula was also a very good cook but had zero personality. Given their skills IMO were equal, personality is what set Danny apart from Paula, not whether or not he is a good interior decorator.

            1. It's not a design show it's a cooking show. Ever have good food in a dive? Isn't that kinda sorta the theme behind CH?
              Paula's dining room was better but Danny's food was executed better. They both had difficult staff to work with. Did GIO have a chip on his shoulder or what?
              The bottom line is that Paula did not run her brigade or her kitchen. Danny did. When Paula matures a bit and gets more assertive she will be ready.
              Danny is cocky and in this business you have to be at least a bit of a narcissist. He'll grow out of that.
              I think Danny totally deserved it and he sure was stoked when he opened that door.
              It was interesting to see all of the past winners were there. Some didn't exactly look happy about it.
              The real question is that since this was filmed so long ago and the economy has tanked will Danny ever collect or will he get shorted like some of the past "winners".

              1. Danny deserved it if you only look at the last episode. On the others I think Paula showed more ability to manage. A lack of experience is hardly a recommendation for someone who has to lead people. I think Danny has potential and will get there but he wasn't as close as Paula.

                No question that her dining room was gorgeous. Danny just needs to listen more to the designers. Hopefully that's something else he'll learn. Executive chef seems like a funny place to start when he has so much to learn.

                6 Replies
                1. re: sharonanne

                  "Executive chef seems like a funny place to start when he has so much to learn."

                  The title, which is nothing but a farce, is "head chef." Nobody has left HK and become an executive chef at any of the places they became employed at. As Gordon put it in one interview I read, and I am completely paraphrasing, "Do you really think I'm going to have some untested kid run one of my kitchens? Absolutely not."

                  1. re: rockandroller1

                    This one isn't one of Gordon's kitchens but, yeah, have heard that these positions are mostly for appearance.

                    Today Danny was on Regis and Kelly and he described his new job as 'one of the chefs' at Borgatta.

                    I just have a thing about peoiple supervising people without supervising ability. You gotta have skills to be credible to your crew but you also need to know how to handle them.

                    1. re: sharonanne

                      I hear you, but I don't think he's likely to be actually supervising anyone. None of the others did at their jobs.

                      1. re: rockandroller1

                        Seemed like the closest finale ever-both of them are obviously very talented chefs. I'm glad that, despite some missteps, that their teams (of eliminated contestants) appeared to work very hard for their chefs. It seemed alot closer to the UK version of HK-less mean-spirited, & the contestants seemed to really support each other.

                        I thought Paula would win it, but I don't think coming in second is going to be a hindrance for her. It was sweet to see Danny literally jumping for joy & his Dad & girlfriend there cheering him on.

                        I live in the DC area, & season 3 winner, Rock Harper, has recently moved from Ben's Next Door to the Carlyle Club. Best of luck to him, & all the HK alumni...

                  2. re: sharonanne

                    "Danny just needs to listen more to the designers. Hopefully that's something else he'll learn."

                    Why? Executive Chef's are not designers nor do they typically have input on design unless they are the owner. Danny could work as an Executive Chef until retirement and never have any influence on the design of a dining room.

                    1. re: Fritter

                      Ok, guess I should have said he should listen to the designers if he ever opens his own place. A good thing to learn BEFORE making expensive mistakes. We're saying pretty much the same thing, you were just more specific.

                  3. Well, I decided a few weeks ago that after the finale, I wouldn't be watching any more of Gordan Ramsey's shows. I wanted to see who would win, so I watched the rest of this series, but man, do I find GR unpleasant. And yes, I realize that the shows are edited and blah blah blah, but he obviously is okay with the way he comes across (and I'm sure he makes a bundle). I'm sick of the guy.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: SusanB

                      was that you that tried to run him down in DC last week?

                    2. I found it really creepy when , in the show, Gordon would sneak away from the kitchen and report (confidentially) to the camera how close the competition was between the two of them. He was using his golf reporter voice and it was just really, really odd.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: shallots

                        That was odd because it was right in front of the restaurants and kitchen. And, there were times when the footage looked so different, as if they'd shot at a different time with a different kind of film and spliced it in.

                      2. I liked Paula from early on when she refused to play games with who to put on the chopping block. She bucked what everyone else agreed with because it wasn't the right choice. I thought she handled her loss with class. She didn't show much personality, though, and for a reality show winner, that's more important. The producers seemed to go out of their way, though, to make Danny look like he was clueless in fine dining and running a nice restaurant. Velvet Hammer?

                        1. I finally got to watch this tonight on Hulu. I think *both* of them showed their cooking chops over the entire series - Danny winning 6 times, Paula winning 5. Her restaurant absolutely looked much better than Danny's - it was gorgeous from the little we saw of it. But Danny just seemed more "on" overall in his kitchen, running the pass.

                          Either one of them could have won. I would like to know if there's any information as to what the comment cards had to say - what the percentage of "excellent" to "fair" to "bad" each of them had.

                          1. Paula should have won! She is clearly the best, most talented, most competent chef. Urgh, I am so bummed. Justice was not served!! Paula, you're tops in my book.

                            1. I know that a chef has to have confidence but many chefs that I've met are rather humble (certainly not the French ones though).

                              I had to laugh out loud listening to Danny in the last episode:

                              "I'm a culinary prodigy, man"

                              Paula deserved to win way more than Danny. I thought the goal was to find the best Chef, not to discover who could 'grow more' over the course of the show.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: meadandale

                                I have dined at Paula's resto, 3030 Ocean in Ft. Lauderdale many times. It is one of the best in South Florida (Zagat rates it 25 for food). I also agree that Paula should have won -- IMHO she is the better chef.

                              2. I just couldn't be bothered this season.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: Withnail42

                                  Then why read and reply to a post about it?

                                  1. re: sharonanne

                                    I can't comment on the fact the I have lost interest in a show I used to enjoy?

                                    I watched until three quarters of the way through then it just got redundant.

                                    Any more questions?

                                    1. re: Withnail42

                                      Not my place to give you permission or not. Just wonder why people do it.

                                2. Oh, Lacey's hysterical! Unlike Top Chef, I just can't take this show seriously. I need to watch Lacey's stupid antics for me get through the show. I missed her a lot when she got kicked off. Thank goodness she was back for the finale.

                                  Overall, I thought Paula was stronger. But I think Danny won because he showed more growth throughout the competition than Paula. I think Ramsey looks for potential in addition to how well they are doing at the current moment (kind of like Petrozza losing to the culinary student last season).

                                  1. After the results of TC and HK this season, I'm not certain what these shows are contesting, but it has nothing to do with culinary skills or potential for success as a chef. It has to do with being skilled at keeping alive through reality TV challenges that happen to involve cooking, sometimes not even restaurant cooking (TC, especially). For example, if Ramsey truly wanted to find out who would be the better chef, he would have allowed the contestants to staff the kitchen with competant individuals, not previous losers and head cases whom they would NEVER hire in a real restaurant situation. Oh, and whoever said that the executive chef does not contribute to the design of a restaurant does not know know what the best of these folks do.

                                    The only good news from the HK finale is that Paula is spared from working in a crappy hotel in an even more crappy city. The bad news is that the job probably pays well, comparatively speaking.

                                    14 Replies
                                    1. re: cabking

                                      The "job" pays $250,000 to the winner for one year.

                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                        As far as I can tell none of them have their 'jobs' anymore.

                                        1. re: Withnail42

                                          No, I think it's a one year deal and then they're auf'ed.

                                          Oh wait - that's another station, another show. :-)

                                          1. re: Withnail42

                                            Yeah, but they got the 250k - that's 150 more than the TC winner.

                                            This show is what it is. It has a distinctly different style than TC, but it's entertaining in it's own way. It is getting somewhat monotonous, the people are remarkably similar every year, the activities and results are mostly the same year after year. Hopefully they are going to make some bigger changes, but I hear that Season 6 is already in the can and they're working on 7. They're just punching these out with a cookie cutter.

                                            This production is all about bringing in people who you (the average audience) feels could never achieve an executive or leadership position, who you doubt could even be an effective line cook, and have you convinced by the end that they have been transformed (by the great GR) into competent chefs. TC brings in people who the audience can see as leaders already, (for the most part - those that aren't are quickly dispatched), and selects the best chef of the lot. HK is more boot-camp, training and over-the-top stress oriented. TC is constant testing, certainly stressful, but not the process of forging a chef, that HK represents.

                                            1. re: applehome

                                              HK for me has become a little like NFNS because I see these people and I think I don't want any of these people touching my food. I can't take any one who appear on such a spectacle show seriously. Having said that I do like the way he works with people on the fWord. TC, for me anyway is different, in that you get the feeling that the contestants for the most part can cook and would produce a good meal.

                                              1. re: Withnail42

                                                Agree with you Withnail....TC is a show where you're seeing creativity - they come into the contest (for the most part) with the ability to cook, so you know you're going to see inventive dishes.

                                                HK - while I said I probably wouldn't watch, I ended up getting sucked in <g> - is pure dramedy, and it is played up for that dramedy. For the most part, I wouldn't be interested in going to their restaurant should they be in my locale. Except Paula's restaurant perhaps.

                                                The shows' formulas are completely different and I guess if you know going into it that they are different, that's OK. While the TC winners get less money, they're getting much more high-level exposure, IMO, based on the type of show it is. HK winners? Once they're gone, they're gone. You don't hear about them opening up their own place.

                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                  I always thought if they're that good why aren't they keep on after the initial year.

                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                    You raise some good and interesting points, yet I would also classify TC as dramedy as well. Did we really need to see the interactions between Hosea and Leah? While Lacey was pure dramedy, Leah had the attitude, work ethic, and behavior of a junior high schooler. There have certainly been plenty of other lowbrow elements on TC too that others can mention.

                                                    At the end of the day, both programs are REALITY TV, and dramedy is the way to attract viewers. Many people tend to think that TC is more food-centric, yet I think opinions on the show and their respective food/gourmet value is also tied to demographics (much like FOX and Bravo viewers).

                                                    Also, while TC winners might get a spotlight feature in Food and Wine magazine, the monetary prize is not nearly enough to open a place of their own; before and after taxes. In this global economy, it might not be a bad idea to take the 250,000 and work for somebody else rather than risk investment. Also, I wouldn't necessarily consider having to pitch Glad and Dr. Pepper products as better exposure.

                                                    One overarching commonality that I can't stand or comprehend in both TC and HK is the degree of smoking by some of the chefs. I know this is a can of worms, but I'm not very keen on the sanitary and culinary benefits of a chef who chain smokes...

                                                    Nonetheless, both shows will be on until their ratings tank....

                                                    1. re: vinhotinto75

                                                      Good point on the Leah/Hosea interaction - definitely could have done without that, as well as previous seasons' potential shaving of Marcel's head. I think that's why I enjoyed TC4 the best - other than the zany antics of Spike and his boy, Andrew, they were (mostly) about the food on that season.

                                                      I just think the caliber of chefs on TC is light years beyond those cooks on HK, so I enjoy watching what they create more. Their caliber is better; they're being judged by a higher quality of guest judges - the knowledge of what they can do is out there in the industry - I still they that even tho they get a smaller amount of prize money, their chances of doing relatively well in the industry is WAY better than anyone on HK.

                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                        I think Paula is the only HK contestant who might have a fighting chance on TC but she isn't strong enough of a personality. Possibly, the woman who hurt her ankle might have done well but she left before she showed enough of what she could do. While I think the drama on TC is there and exploited, it's created for HK--why else would Lacey, Colleen, and most of them be there, if not for the train wreck quantity?

                                                2. re: applehome

                                                  I've tried with TC but never been dragged in like I am with HK. I've done a tiny bit of catering and TC reminds me of those 'omg, is that the kitchen' moments. Not in a good way.

                                                  I guess what interests me on HK is the line. I'm interested in seeing that side of a professional kitchen and how they work together (or don't). It seems the drama is about the same on both. One of the 2 or 3 TC shows that I watched had a woman crying almost the whole darned show.

                                                  1. re: sharonanne

                                                    You really don't see a real representation on what happens in the line. If you get the fWord that is a little more true to life. Over all a very good show.

                                                    Have to agree TC can (sometimes more often than not) stand for Top Caterer as instead of Top Chef. However the stylized drama on HK is way way over the top. Which is what turned me off this season. How often can you listen to someone being called a donkey?

                                                    1. re: Withnail42

                                                      This whole discussion reminds me of Anthony Bourdain's first (I think) book about working in a kitchen and how culinary school teaches students to be creative. The thing he liked about the immigrant workers he worked beside and employed was that they could make the same thing over and over exactly the same way. Quite a different skill and I wonder how many culinary grads expect creativity right from their first job.

                                                      1. re: sharonanne

                                                        That's an interesting point. (You're right I think it was his first book.) I've heard chefs bemoan the fact that now a days culinary grad arrive at a restaurant ready to be a head chef expecting a book deal and a development offer for a TV show. Simple cooking consistency, many times is way down the list.