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Chopped All-Stars -- Episode 1 (contains spoilers)

well I watched tonight's episode with the NFNS contenders. It was a little dull I thought and the baskets are weird as usual.

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    1. re: AMFM

      My husband and I were horrifed at the remark about killing a litter of puppies by Michael. For someone who seems to be sooo concerned about discrimination and ugliness in this world, he is very obtuse and ignorant. If he makes statements like that frequently, maybe his life is what it is because of his mouth.

      1. re: ccjs

        This opening episode was generally crappy in my opinion. Watching Brad sweat was the highlight.

        Michael's comment was unnecessarily vulgar and cast a dark pall on his victory.

        1. re: TrishUntrapped

          I was startled really startled by what he said--especially as I watched with my newly adopted puppy in my lap!
          I'm excited for next week's competition, that should be a little more interesting.

          1. re: TrishUntrapped

            It's clear from other Chopped threads that comments by contestants are heavily edited. They are egged on by staff to sound cocky and even make disparaging remarks about the competition, with the juiciest bits appearing on your screen.

            No comments about the cooking itself?

            1. re: paulj

              Paul did you see the show.. I truly doubt Michael's sentence could have been heavily edited...

              Unless he actually said something like this:

              "I love puppies so much that I would never kill a litter of them to win this. And I mean never."

              I don't think so. ;-)

              1. re: TrishUntrapped

                Ummm, he was joking. Not that it was fall-on-the-floor hilarious but neither was I "shocked" or "startled". It's called hyperbole.

                1. re: TrishUntrapped

                  I half watched the hour. I haven't paid much attention to the Next FN star competition, so didn't know these cooks from any others they have had on Chopped. I did catch that 'horrible comment' near the end. Clearly Michael's persona is meant to be borderline outrageous.

                  I think the future episodes with cooks on the caliber of Aaron will be more interesting (if for no other reason that some have been judges).

                  1. re: TrishUntrapped

                    http://blog.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/c...
                    Ted Allen's blog on this episode
                    "At the risk of stating the obvious, Michael was joking and would never harm a domestic animal, excepting, perhaps, a lobster. He was, in fact, arguably the sweetest and definitely among the funniest contestants ever to compete on The Next Food Network Star—both major reasons we wanted him to compete in All-Stars"

            2. I tuned in and wondered if it was the right show-- I guess these guys are "all stars" in some sense, but having (lost) on next food network star is not quite the same level as Anne Burrell etc. But who knows, maybe the kicker is that the winner of this episode will beat the winner of her episode! I definately didn't think these guys did any better than the usual crew does.

              2 Replies
              1. re: DGresh

                But who knows, maybe the kicker is that the winner of this episode will beat the winner of her episode!
                ~~~~~~~~~~
                i really hope not. i was less than thrilled with the way this one ended.

                and add me to the list of people who were disturbed & disgusted by Michael's comment about the puppies.

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  Equally unsettling was when he acknowledged "yes! I look like a clown", or something like that.

              2. Agreed #2. Also agree with the litter of puppies remark. Completely uncalled for.

                Surprised they didn't start off with an episode of the "celebrity" chefs first, then have these former NFNS non-winners be on a later episode.

                7 Replies
                1. re: LindaWhit

                  What was wrong with Lisa last night?? She seemed odder than usual.

                  1. re: C. Hamster

                    They mentioned that her brother had just passed away. She had his picture on her station and said she was playing for him. Brad seemed weird (sick?) as well. He was fine in the interviews, but looked pale and sweaty otherwise.

                    When did these guys become "all stars"? The last time we saw them they were getting sent home for not being good enough. I guess they got around that by calling them "fan favorites".

                    1. re: Whinerdiner

                      When did these guys become "all stars"?
                      ~~~~~~~~
                      i guess in a sense they're *FN* all-stars because viewers know them from their respective seasons of TNFNS...but i had to chuckle every time Ted referred to them as "celebrities." :)

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        I'm sure he was chuckling on the inside. :)

                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                          "Ted referred to them as "celebrities." :)"

                          yea, they wish. *)
                          my husband commented that he recognized a couple of them.
                          I reminded him that they were the contestants from that other show.

                          I have to agree also about Michaels' remark reg: the litter of puppies.
                          We both wretched as well, not funny, but I think it was a 'shoot from the hip [without thinking] remark' on his part. Probably didn't mean it. Bet somewhere on the web there is already an apology. Who knows....

                      2. re: C. Hamster

                        no offense intended to anyone who liked her first time around on TNFNS but even then she was not my favorite.
                        I'm pretty sure she knows she has only has so many minutes.
                        doesn't/didn't she watch the show or at least get the memo about how it works?
                        putting only one of the basket ingredients on the plate? REALLY? I'm glad she didn't hang on long, she was mentally elsewhere in my opinion.
                        Brad appeared lackluster in interest and personality & thinner and maybe not feeling well.
                        Debbie, didn't care for her style of cooking or much else on TNFNS so I had no interest in watching her last night.
                        Michael, same as on his first tv show when he didn't disappoint, last night he didn't disappoint me either. I enjoyed his talent and humor.

                        1. re: iL Divo

                          I was surprised Alex was arguing for Lisa's plate of 3 missing ingredients so much. just to add fake drama I guess.

                          I missed the puppy comment.

                          Brad's nails looked a little dirty. I thought he'd win. Everyone seemed really subdued to me.

                    2. i didnt realize being a loser/runner-ups on one show made u a celebrity chef on the FN...
                      have they lowered their standards that far?
                      and until alex gets up and gets her food/double dipping/technique ripped to shreds
                      it wont be as much fun to watch...
                      the duff/irvine/brunell one might be interesting
                      or conant getting just a basket of raw onions....that would be fun...

                      20 Replies
                      1. re: srsone

                        I want to see Conant with raw onions, fish, cheese and cheap premade pasta like Chef Boyardee.

                        1. re: chowser

                          i adore Conant (he won me over with his *amazing* food), but that is THE perfect basket for him :)

                          1. re: chowser

                            I want to see Conant with raw onions ...
                            _________________________________

                            Does that mean there could actually be a basket with cooked onions? :-)

                            1. re: ipsedixit

                              there could....
                              but i just remember he always gets on people if they put onions anywhere on a dish...just because he doesnt like them....
                              like the chefs are supposed to know what people like and dont like ahead of time...

                              well..probably everybody knows he doesnt like them now...
                              and if i was going to be on the show i would research it first anyway..
                              like some of these i have noticed..
                              make sure u get every ingredient on the plate..cook the meat all the way...dont double dip...dont drop a spoon on the floor and use it again..dont use the same stuff every dish...make sure conant doesnt get an onion...and do something wild and crazy at least one dish...

                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                This is one of the problems I have with this show. Initially it was being sold as "the tables are turned" show. Judges are forced to cook. Something viewers have been clamoring for. Then it comes out that some of the judges have not agreed to be contestants. Even more ridiculous is that most of these will continue to judge. I have said before, I want an episode of Scott Conant vs. Alex Guarneschelli judged by contestants. Even more sadly not only do we not get these overbearing judges but we get three losers of the ultimate loser, Battle of the Next Food Network Stars for the first episode.

                                1. re: Bob156

                                  Sounds as though FN has successfully cast Scott and Alex as the bad guys you just love to hate. I bet the producer of this show used to stage professional wrestling matches :)

                                  1. re: Bob156

                                    http://blog.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/2...
                                    Ted Allen's blog interview with Alex
                                    "Would you ever compete on Chopped?
                                    Definitely. Being on TV, you’re always putting yourself out there at one point or another. It comes with the territory; you have to have an acceptance of your own strengths and weaknesses. I think to be a complete and whole judge, you need to compete and make yourself vulnerable to criticism, put yourself in their shoes."

                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                        Maybe the powers that be (e.g. producers) thought she would serve the show better as a judge.

                                        1. re: paulj

                                          perhaps. they should have polled the viewers - i suspect the majority would have voted to see her compete :)

                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                            You could add your comment to Ted's blog - though may be you should wait till the furor over the puppy comment dies down. But there was a comment to the effect that in the reruns the puppies comment has been edited out.

                                            1. re: paulj

                                              did you mean fur or furor...oh I'm bad, sorry folks couldn't resist.

                                              1. re: paulj

                                                You know when I rewatched last week's Top Chef, Richard Blais made a comment about being willing to catch a goat and kill it if it would help him. Couldn't help thinking about the dust-up over here about chopped!

                                                1. re: DGresh

                                                  goat = food, litter of puppies = not food

                                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                    what if he'd mentioned a kid (baby goat)?

                                                    A CC bio of Chris Cosentino mentioned the instance where he went to a farm near San Francisco and killed a couple of kids, slit their throats. He described it as a tough thing to do, but he felt he needed to do so to be true to his (developing) philosophy of head-to-tail respectful use of the animal.

                                                    What was the meat in the appetizer segment? Did 4 calves die just to supply their livers for the sake of that show?

                                                    1. re: paulj

                                                      I think if anyone said they'd kill a kid on TV, a ton of people would think it meant a human child. So I doubt it would make it past the editors.

                                                      1. re: piccola

                                                        The editors did remove the puppies comment on repeats of the is episode.

                                                        In another thread, the OP talked of roasting 4 labs. Later he wrote something about lambs. It got me to thinking of the poem - Mary had a little lamb, a little pork, a little beef ...

                                                    2. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                      just to be provacative, they are both mammals. Eating or not eating is a matter of custom.

                                                      1. re: DGresh

                                                        Nothing to be gained here with you guys, so I'll stop.

                                        2. re: Bob156

                                          Did I miss a report that some refused, or is it being assumed that they refused to compete since they're judging and not competing?

                                          Seems to me that they had to have some of them not compete, just so that the judging is "legit", ie by "chopped" judges, and not some complete newbs). And it would look weird if they judged one episode of the tournament and competed in another episode of the same tourney.

                                  2. I got sucked into watching. I always do with "Chopped." I agree that Michael's comment was really weird. Other than that, I'm glad he won. At least he knew to blanch the bitter melon.