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Mystery Diner. 100% faked, i'll tell you why.

While watching the german restaurant ep, I was pretty suspicious, for some of the reasons other people have mentioned:

1. "Hey, let's go to that bar we always go to after work!" What, you don't know what it's called? ...or maybe you can't say because you're not allowed because you're an actor.

2. Horrible acting (which you expect from the owners because they KNOW they're on camera) but the people (waitresses, manager, etc) who supposedly didn't know were very not good.

...but here's what really stuck out to me.

I worked for an Anheuser-Busch beer distributorship for 8 years. You want to take a guess at one thing I NEVER heard any of our salesmen or delivery guys refer to themselves as?

"I'm the new supply guy."

Really? No. I'm sorry. I could have bought "I'm the new beer guy," or "I'm the new [distributor company name] guy," or EVEN "I'm the new [beer brewery or brand name] guy."

If this was a REAL show, they would have said "I'm the new beer guy from BEEEEEEEEP distributing."

As soon as the mystery diner said that and Gunnar the "manager" didn't even blink an eye, I was out.

You need to understand that suppliers, be it a beer distributor or food distributor, create relationships with the managers and owners of their customers. I used to go on sales calls with our salesmen and they knew every manager by name and every manager knew who they were, what they sold and who they worked for. There's just no way any manager would accept "supply guy" without a question or a "what the f**k does that mean?"

This was a 100% scripted show with actors all around. Not that great of one, either.

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  1. totally agree, as I have been in the service business for over 30 years. Like when the one waitress is eating off plates and drinking out of other glasses, such bad acting.

    2 Replies
    1. re: vlcal61

      It happens. It has happened in a bunch of restaurants I worked at. Dishwashers do it to. Open your eyes!

      1. re: Kissdacook83

        I am a former dishwasher(retired),and I will tell you,I have never ate off someone else's plate.For one thing,I didn't really know who they were,and I didn't want to catch anything,if they were sick. And another thing,I was able to eat anything I wanted(except expensive foods). The bosses would take out for lunch(or dinner),even if I didn't eat at all.

    2. My question is, when the person who is screwing up gets confronted, it's all on camera and it gets put on the air. Don't you need someone's permission to air their face? Who would voluntarily allow themselves to be seen on TV as a dishonest jerk if it was real?

      3 Replies
      1. re: sandylc

        I'm sure the producers get releases from the owner and staff well in advance. Of course this gives the diner warning and time to clean up its act, and I'd be highly suspicious if everybody was really taken by surprise by them. If I watched this show, which I don't.

        In another thread it's said that at least one of the episodes is a reenactment, not "reality" after all. (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/823316) That sounds plausible but it demolishes the whole premise of the show.

        1. re: John Francis

          Ah hah!!! That explains the really bad acting.

          1. re: John Francis

            That's fine and dandy, but the show doesn't mention "re-enactment," it makes it out to be a real account.

            That's crappy and dishonest tv.

        2. I'm not familiar with this show, but Gordon Ramsey did an episode on a customer of mine (I was a food distributor sales rep) and it was totally fake. It was a father and son, in real life the father/manager was an ex-cop and very nasty and tough, while his son the chef was a sweetheart. In the show it was the other way around, poor dad getting beat up (figuratively) by his son, the monster. And showing food that was almost rotting, that chef would NEVER have anything like that in his kitchen, he was a true pro. Totally staged. No biggie, it's just entertainment I guess.

          5 Replies
          1. re: coll

            Too bad, because this type of show just won't go away.

            1. re: sandylc

              Oh, it can indeed go away, sandylc.

              Ramsey used to do these shows here in the UK - but we've managed to export him to America and we don't get the crap any more.

              1. re: Harters

                What country can we send ALL of our "reality" programs to, please?

                1. re: sandylc

                  Unfortunately, several of our cable channels already have them on an endless loop.

                  Some ya win. Some ya don't :-0

            2. Not quite the same show, but here's a rundown of the fakery at Restaurant Stakeout, a similar show:


              Only remembered it because it was linked in another RB post I linked to earlier. Not meaning to pimp the site.

              1. They've been advertising this show as a "new series" despite the fact that it already was shown on the network over the summer. I didn't watch the whole show tonight as I was catching up on another show that I had on my DVR. When that was over, I wound up at the "confrontation" part of the episode where the "cook/manager" is running a catering business out of the kitchen at the owner's expense.

                The first time this series ran, they showed the owners what was up in a small trailer that was filled with televisions showing every angle of the restaurant in question. Confrontations occurred in and around the trailer and the "culprits" stormed out of that over and over again so I know what it looks like.

                From what I've seen tonight, they have actually re-shot at least the dramatic "confrontation" scenes. The same conversations take place out on the restaurant floor. THE END. That's all we need to know that this is a totally fake show.

                1. Of course it is fake. Besides having a formal education in communication and media literacy, I know from one of the restaurants on the show that Mystery Diners contacts the restaurants and asks if they would like to participate with their show with the promise that it will increase their business in addition to being compensated 500- 1000 dollars. Then Mystery Diner inputs their own actor or actors as employees that get caught in some kind of indiscretion. What is the purpose? The same as all programming, to get a steady audience in front of media message (commercials)... It is sad and unfortunate that people are addicted to negative drama to such an extent that now producers have to fabricate negative drama in order to catch mass media. It isn't bad enough that we have shows like Jersey Shore and Real Housewives where bad behavior is encouraged and revered. Children and young adults watch this programming and think this is how they are suppose to behave and communicate. Young adults want to emulate these degenerates just because they are on television. Very Sad what this world is coming to. Very Sad.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: SwordofTruth

                    " I know from one of the restaurants on the show that Mystery Diners contacts the restaurants and asks if they would like to participate with their show with the promise that it will increase their business in addition to being compensated 500- 1000 dollars. "

                    I'm trying to figure out how the family-run restaurant owner comes out ahead after a waitress was shown rubbing food on her chest and armpits, especially since we were told she apologized and was back at work. Would you want to risk eating there again?

                    Well.... some people might be into that, but I'm assuming their numbers wouldn't make up for lost business.

                    BTW, that's the episode where the "undercover" waitress's hair jumps from being loose to being in a ponytail from second to second. It's magic hair!

                  2. Doesn't anyone whose face is shown on this type of show have to sign a waver? If it were real, who in their right mind would give persmission to a TV show to show video of their own thievery, for example?

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: sandylc

                      no if its a public place u do not have to sign anything but it has to be public

                      1. re: Giati

                        Giati. You are mistaken. Read the previous thread on this subject.

                        1. re: Giati

                          Depends on where its being filmed. You don't need to sign a waiver if you post that they're filming a TV Show on premise

                        2. re: sandylc

                          It all has to do with compensation. Although this show is fake, I knew a guy who was on MTV's Busted, which is apparently real. He bought alcohol for underage minors at the shore. Anyway, they offered to pay all of his fines in exchange for using him in the show. If Mystery Diners was real, which its not, I'm sure the producers would pay the person enough to get permission to sign a photo release.

                          1. re: WhizzKidd

                            Shows don't pay people to get a photo release. They person either signs the release or they don't. If they don't then the pixilate, tile or blur out the face.

                            1. re: YankeefanNo9

                              I don't know about the legality showing one's face on the air but Chef Dave from the first program was caught stealing customers from their boss and he provided the following comments on his blog:

                              "I was so pissed that night, had I not needed my last check so much I never would have signed that stupid release."

                              Obviously nobody would sign to have their face aired after being humiliated.

                        3. It has to be faked. Most of the so-called 'indiscretions' are so blatant and over-the-top deliberate that it has to be scripted.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: mucho gordo

                            I agree. I fell like if the restaurant owners allow that, they don't deserve to own a flourishing business. There are so many other options. But even in the worst, the over the top antics are beyond ridiculous!!

                          2. Why is this a revelation? All of the so-called reality shows are scripted to a degree. Some just more than others.

                            1. IT'S 4REAL!!
                              Permission is unilateral given to be filmed by being an employee of said business.
                              I am an executive manager in a popular known business...
                              It's amazing the B/S that some employees feel that they can get away with. Not all; some!
                              ...stealing; rude to customers; slacking off; etc...
                              When the cats are away; the mice take the freak over!!

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: BlkPumpkin

                                If the show was real, why do the owners, "suppliers," and targets wear earbuds? Not sure why I'm the only one to mention this, as it is blatantly obvious...

                                1. re: BlkPumpkin

                                  While it is true that employees in a restaurant can be challenging, it is not feasible that everything that happens in one episode can happen in that short of a period. I always discourage people who say 'I want to own a restaurant' from doing so with no experience, but this stuff is not real.

                                  If restaurants are managed like these, owners don't deserve them anyway. They should be a labor of love and employees should be loyal. If a big pile of clowns are there when the owner is not, shame on him or her. But it's NOT that silly. Ever.

                                2. Just watched the episode you're talking about. The guy that was the beer supplier was one of the show cast members. He's not going to say he's from any particular distributor. I don't put a lot of credibility in you because you used to work for AB - which, by the way, isn't a restaurant. Not saying none of these episodes play it up a bit, but if you've gone out to eat lately, you'd know there are some real winners serving you.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: jmjones19

                                    Your point is?

                                    I frankly don't care what you think because I worked for an AB distributor.

                                    If you've personally ever gone on a sales call with a delivery guy or salesperson, and not ONE time heard a brand mentioned, i'll eat my hat.

                                    I've gone on calls with the sales guys and I've also helped the drivers deliver the beer. Sorry, but that was the most unnatural conversation I've ever heard and it sounded nothing like a real delivery or sales call.

                                  2. All "Reality" shows are taped, edited, scripted, etc. ~~~ Of course they're "fake" ~~ Why lose brain cells watching the crap?

                                    1. TheAres 3 minutes ago

                                      I especially love the episode spoken of below, where the 2 frat boys carry a half barrel out the back door.

                                      When you see them going out the back door on the inside camera the barrel has a brewery cap still in place, with a portable tapper laying next to it, but when you see them coming out on the outside camera the barrel now has a portable tapper installed where the cap was.

                                      They stop halfway out the door for a beer? And why would a restaurant have a hand tapper in the cooler?

                                      1. I completely agree that it's fake. The main thing that tipped me off was that everyone (even the people who supposedly don't know they're being set up and filmed) are all audible, which means they're miked.

                                        Also, each episode displays completely unprofessional and ridiculous behavior, which no restaurant owner would ever put up with.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: hills887

                                          I totally agree that this show is not 100% real; it s staged so that they have a show at the end of the day. But I have worked in restaurants and that crap does go on. And worse.

                                          1. re: ttoommyy

                                            Yeah. It just doesn't go on all at once. At best it is a "re-enactment" of the infractions that the investigation uncovered.

                                        2. I was one who believed it was all real. One thing I thought was strange however (which noone has mentioned here) is how all these transgressions seem to happen almost as soon as the owners sit to watch and within that period of time they are watching. If say a waiter is stealing tips, chances are he won't do it every day or the opportunities won't present themselves every day. You would have to observe over days to catch someone doing something you suspect them off. After reading peoples feedbacks, a lot of it makes sense (miked actors, shown faces, etc.).. IT"S FAKE!

                                          1. It saddens me that the food network would air garbage like this. This is more like something MTV or TruTV would air. And I literally felt like it was absolutely necessary to go through the hoops on this web page registration to get that off my chest.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Wyattburp69

                                              Are there hoops? I have been here for a while, so I either forget them or it has changed. Welcome, regardless.

                                            2. 'Mystery Diners' is a new program to me. The first 3 or 4 shows appeared to be genuine (but still outrageously unbelievable). Then I saw two shows again this evening (and my last). One about co-workers/lovers who broke up and the other about an over-the-top 'head waiter'. These were poorly 'acted' yet humorous. Needeless to say, I am dissapointed to learn that it's fake. The Food Network will no longer get my ratings when this program is aired. The biggest tip-off (no pun intended) was how well the 'marks' were filmed. Setting up hidden camera's are one thing, but getting a clear, close shot of a guy shoving tip money in his pocket was a bit too much! Alas, the show WAS a great premise... Gosh, I only hope 'Chopped' isn't fake! PS: Thank you CHOW for your wonderful site who caters to people with 'OCD' like me... (Obsessive Cooking Disorder) Glory New Year to you all~

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: Rammfantasy

                                                It's my understanding that the pilot was actually legit but they got caught at Big Earls and everything from then on out has been staged after they did survilance

                                                1. re: Rammfantasy

                                                  I watched about four episodes last night and caught on about the second one. "I'm sorry, I promise I won't do it again." One person fired, one kept. C'mon! There's even a formula for how things go down in every show. And the confrontations are "nice and neat." What?? A couple of other shows with a totally fake "reality" slants are one (ironically) on True TV with the Lizard Lick Towing crew, "World's Worst Tennants" (the evicted people or problems magically show up when they're looking for them), and I suspect "Hardcore Pawn" to have several paid crazy people walking in. I mean, how often do people really go into the pawn shop to throw a bully? It's worse than People of Wal-Mart! Bad acting is bad acting.

                                                2. Well there is NO doubt this show is 100% scripted, from other articles I have read, it is based on actual events that happened at each of these restaurants. I knew it was a fake from the first "sting" I saw. Surveillance cameras do not play back with the clarity of a movie being played on screen, they are typically, though not always, these days, black and white with a very grainy picture. My boyfriend and I watch it just for the entertainment value. We always crack up over the "eyeglass cam"! And yes, the acting is HORRIBLE!

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: scooter1016

                                                    You have never been in a security control room, cameras and their playback are extremely clear and accurate. The media and news only shows us a grainy version because they don't want us to know how well we can be watched.

                                                    1. re: LikestoEatout

                                                      Why would the media and news purposely make security footage "grainy" when the police are trying to apprehend a murderer, rapist, etc? Don't you think it would be in the best interest of apprehending the felon to show a " clear and accurate" version if one existed? Your statement doesn't really make a lot of sense.

                                                    2. re: scooter1016

                                                      The show is probably fake but security footage can range from very bad to extremely good. It's silly to say that all security footage is grainy and black and white in this day and age. Basically, you get the system you pay for. More money = better footage.

                                                    3. Yes, this show is bulls*** on the strength that this type of survellience does not take place like this, LIKE A T.V. SITCOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If the production co. would show a disclosure saying that the episode is based on actual events that took place during a survellience, then, in my opinion, the show would have more credibility. At least we would know the production is staged but based on events that did go down. Acting is awful but, what do expect on low budget.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: mel2629

                                                        Why is this a revelation to people? Don't we see this on many, many so-called "reality" shows? Half-scripted dialogue and situations are the norm. Do you really think most of these people would really allow their true daily lives on TV? I don't think so.

                                                      2. This show is only good to watch, if your only intentions is to laugh at it. This show is fake we all that, but 1 major red flag on how you know it's not real is that the people who steal money, never, I mean NEVER get arrested.

                                                        If you see the cook stealing 200plus dollars in a single day of filming, or steal hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise, how stupid is it not to have them arrested?

                                                        If I seen someone stealing that much from me in 1 day, that would mean they were doing it way before you caught them, and you would want to press charges.

                                                        Or else what's to stop them from doing the same to other places.

                                                        Another reason why this show is so fake is because they only ever focus on a single person. If you have to focus on that single person why keep them around?

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: barclayteo

                                                          Yes, you are so right.Did you see the latest episode on 1/25? This trash just gets worse!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What vendor brings anything, much less meat, through the front door of a restaurant during dinner hours? I said if the show is based on true survellience then show a disclaimer saying so but, these re-enactments, no matter what, are really stupidly done.

                                                        2. Just because a show is unscripted doesn't mean situations aren't manipulated to achieve a certain reaction, or that things aren't re-enacted.

                                                          1. I went today to one of the restaurants on Mystery Diners. I had the chance to speak to the owner who was on the show. He said the show is a set up. He said that the Food Network contacted him and asked if he wanted to be on one of their shows. They didn't say which show. The Food Network finally revealed which show after they inspected his restaurant. He also stated that it took two days to set up for the filming.

                                                            1. just finished watching the show with the brazillian steakhouse.....FAKE FAKE FAKE...now i know a lot of these 'reality' shows are staged and scripted to an extent, but at least there are disclaimers at the end of most shows.....the thing that rubs me the wrong way is how the Fool Network...oops Food.....insults the viewer's intelligence by passing this off as real......can we get more Man Vs. Food please? there, i feel better now.....

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: occam1

                                                                My sister Jessica works in tv.Has for years and told me that these shows are scripted,staged etc. The only reason they have shows like this is because the public devours reality tv,so they want to get in on the gravy train.

                                                              2. Yeah, unfortunately it's fake. I was watching this show on Lifetime called "Prank my mom" and one of the chefs from Mystery Diners (the one that bought the carp fish) so happened to also be an actor on the other show. Fired thief chef to actor? Not likely.

                                                                1. I don't get why everyone is making a big deal about it being "faked". It's a TV show, which means a plot, villians, victims, actors and triumph. That's like saying "I can't believe that magician doesn't really have magic!" Like, come on people... Food Network is entitled to air anything that attracts viewers. I watch it and enjoy it like I do LOST. Not thinking all those stars are really on an island... o.0

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: tenaciousswagg

                                                                    The difference is that the show is presented as "reality." Not quite the same as watching "Lost." Still, I agree, it's a TV show and therefore all should not be believed.

                                                                    1. re: tenaciousswagg

                                                                      I guess you don't have a problem with people selling a fake product or service. Perhaps that has become the norm. Don't advertised it as being real if it isn't. But most people who are not media literate can't see the deception anyway. I never watch the show. Only once when my GF's restaurant was on the show. All cameras in the open and an actor for the transgressor who never worked there not was there a similar employee or incident from the past. Like there isn't enough negative drama, we need to make it up because that's what people are addicted to or taught to be addicted to. Sad and pathetic.

                                                                    2. I'm friends with one of the mystery diners. What you're watching is fake however its based on real events that happened earlier in the week.

                                                                      Mystery Diners comes in one week and figures out whats wrong. Then after that they film the incidents with actors, although sometimes the people who get busted will reprise their roles.

                                                                      The way you can tell its fake is that none of the customers faces are blurred out. From what I understand they tried to do one show legit but they were busted in 10 minutes after they asked a customer to sign a release they called the restaurant back and told the employees they were being taped.

                                                                      1. Show is so bogus it's embarrassing.

                                                                        1. The producers are happily busy attempting to insult the viewers intelligence. If a 'disclaimer' came up before the show then OK but when it is flashed in tiny print for a mili-second after the show that's wrong.
                                                                          There will always be gullible viewers who believe everything they see.
                                                                          Reminds me of the 'safety' film we were all required to watch once. It showed some poor sap getting his thumb cut off by a table saw. It showed the thumb lying on the floor. Someone picked it up and washed it off and wrapped in a dirty cloth. The guy with the missing thumb and his thumb were rushed to the hospital where it showed the doctors trying to sew the thumb back on but alas it didn't work. The person sitting beside me started crying uncontrollably. I asked them what was wrong. She said she just felt so sorry for the guy who from now on will be missing his thumb.

                                                                          1. This awful show is completely fake. You would think that a channel like the Food Network would be emarassed about it, but apparently they couldn't care less since they are making money by duping the simpletons.

                                                                            I wrote to the Food Network after one extraordinarily fake episode to see if they would make any attempt to come clean and they gave me some BS about how they do not comment directly on any of their shows.

                                                                            The extraordinarily fake episode was the one where the valet and the delivery driver werer supposedly taking customers cars out for delivery orders. The valet and the delivery driver were both in the middle of the parking lot where it would have been absolutely impossible for a microphone to pick up any of their conversation unless they were wearing microphones and their conversation was perfectly clear on the show.

                                                                            I still watch a few other shows on the Food Network, but I've lost a great deal of respect for the d'bags behind this idiotic, fake, scripted show called Mystery Diners.

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: BeerCooker

                                                                              All it would take is a disclaimer at the beginning saying that the show included actors' depictions of the events that actually occurred. "America's Most Wanted" has been doing re-enactments for years.

                                                                              I still watch the show, and telling myself it is a re-enactment makes all the difference in the world. They couldn't get the real culprits, so they are showing us what happened.

                                                                              Now, if we also learn that the events never happened at all, that's where I get upset.

                                                                              1. re: BeerCooker

                                                                                I'd rather watch re-runs of Saved By the Bell. i've never seen such bad acting in my life.

                                                                              2. Surprise ! Surprise! A fake reality show??

                                                                                I gave up on these restaurant 'reveal' shows when the one with Rocco Dispirto (The Restaurant, I think) was so obviously faked..... and he was soooo annoying. That was 10 years ago, and these shows are still trying.

                                                                                As far as the Food Network owning up to mediocrity and worse........ they are writing the book on both, and apparently doing it rather successfully. So...... whatever!

                                                                                1. ...so I guess your saying that all cooking shows are fake!!! Kitchen nightmares, restaurant impossible, restaurant steakout, Hell's kitchenn etc. wow!!!! Too funny!

                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Kissdacook83

                                                                                    Your post doesn't seem to be responding to the OP's, so I'm guessing it's responding to mine??

                                                                                    If you are............... I didn't say that at all.

                                                                                    Regardless of who you're replying to...................

                                                                                    So YOU'RE saying that NO reality shows are faked at all???

                                                                                    Too funny!..... INDEED!

                                                                                    1. re: Midlife

                                                                                      I have to admit my feelers were pretty hurt after I found out that on Season 2 of Top Chef the Bravo TV editing elves tried to make us think the chefs got drunk THEN decided to shave Marcel's head. When in fact, they went after Marcel first, then decided after he went and hid to shave two of their heads. Most of the chefs involved have admitted (and is supported by video) that they went after Marcel first. I don't know that Bravo ever has admitted to their nonsequential editing.

                                                                                      1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                        WHAT?? really?? I think I just felt a tiny bit of my heart break off. There was not a poor little Marcel being attacked by drunken wild manaics? The whole story seems more playfull if they were they were just "messing around" then let him stop off :(

                                                                                        1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                          Yeah. It wasn't that way. Someone told me that and I said Bullshit.... then I looked it up on interviews with Marcel, Elia, and TWoP and other places.... yeah. It didn't go down that way. And Elia doesn't drink......

                                                                                          1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                                            It's even on chowhound... I just wasn't watching top chef at the time.

                                                                                            (toward the bottom)

                                                                                      2. re: Kissdacook83

                                                                                        Ummm...yeah they are. I'm sick of all these stupid shows with people crying all the time. If you think Robert Irvine can lay down a floor in 4 hours and have people walk on it, god bless.

                                                                                      3. I have actual PROOF that it is faked. In the episode of Pina Pizza, which I just watched and realized the show is fake, Jedd and his "anonymous" friend. Reality shows blur out faces now to make it seem more real. Anyway, he and his friend are taking a keg to the back. I noticed that the keg had a tap on it, and thought, "why would there be a tap on it? the restaurant has real beer taps." Then I noticed the blooper. If you watch the two take the keg from the walk-in fridge, the tap is on the top of the keg, but the white cap is still on it. When they exit the back door, the tap is magically latched on. If this is hidden camera shooting unknowing people, then why would they have to do a second take? This show is totally fake, and I hoped it wasn't. However, there were the tell tale signs of bad acting, and once I saw that, I knew it was outrageously fake. It should be on TruTV its so fake.

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: WhizzKidd

                                                                                          I haven't seen that one, but I just saw the Cheeseburger one where the thieving waitress (who I think I also saw on an episode of "Law &Order") had her fanny pack buckled around her waist in one shot, then suddenly she was holding it in her hand as the "outraged" owner grabbed it away from her. Clearly a continuity problem.

                                                                                          And then there were the girls who were so drunk that one threw up on the street, a taxi was supposedly called for them, but I wanted to see the scene of them signing a waiver so their faces could be shown. Of course, if the were as drunk as they were supposed to be, they couldn't legally sign anyway.

                                                                                        2. If these shows were remotely true, the health inspectors who work in these areas should have been immediately fired. How on earth could any of these restaurants get into the state they are in without being visited by an inspector periodically?

                                                                                          1. Charles Stiles' Business Evaluation Services has a Better Business rating of F according to

                                                                                            A class action suit is being considered according to

                                                                                            I'm not associated with the BBB, class action suit, Food Network, Mystery Diner TV series, etc. in any way.

                                                                                            1. just watched the Las Vegas one that seemed to be copying a script from Vander Pump Rules... Layla looked like a washed up porn actress( or rather what I expect one would look like)
                                                                                              it was like the pilot for the next singles angst tv series

                                                                                              1. I believe the show may also be a fake, but not for the reason you posted. FYI I have worked in the food industry pretty much for 20 years and i have heard the term your new supply person.

                                                                                                1. Today was my first time watching this show and I am so disappointed. I love Food Network and didn't expect them to air some crap like this. Not only is the acting horrible, but everything about the show is fake. It's an insult to my intelligence.

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: KeKei

                                                                                                    I completely agree. This is so fake that it has gone beyond what is appropriate even for reality tv shows that are staged or where situations are intentionally "developed". I really feel insulted. The New Orleans episode was the worst ever, "what is meemaw gonna say." Don't insult me. I tried to go to the food network site to voice my disgust but they were smart enough not to provide a contact link.

                                                                                                  2. Modern family, The Big Bang Theory, Two and a half men, Curb your enthusiasm

                                                                                                    None of these shows made me laugh as much as Mystery Diners. It's so bad and over the top that I can't help from bursting out laughing.

                                                                                                    I was once watching Operation Repo on TruTV and I will shamefully admit that I couldn't tell it was fake. However, even someone as naïve as myself could tell within minutes that Mystery Diners was full of it. Not only that but someone entered the room with me while I was watching one of the employees being grilled by their boss after their incompetence was caught on camera and the first thing he asked was, "Why would that employee agree to have their face aired on television?"

                                                                                                    One of the best part of each episode is the obvious, silly questions Charles Stiles will ask. When one restaurant owners is watching his manager drink wine in the middle of the dining room, Charles asks, "Do you allow your employees to drink on the job and in front of the guests?" Really, Charles? Do you think he does?

                                                                                                    I also like how the recap after every show ALWAYS has a positive outcome for the restaurant owners and a negative outcome for the disgraced employees. The narrator will say something of the likes of, "After Mystery Diners completed their investigation, revenues are now up 40% at the restaurant. Meanwhile, Frank and the other employees who were caught stealing supplies from the backroom, were hit by a bus and died."

                                                                                                    1. an absolutely horrible show! so disgusted that a really good restaurant like Deanies would even be involved in this piece of shit show!

                                                                                                      1. Here's proof:

                                                                                                        Just as someone said below, as soon as the two guys walk through the door with the keg, it is tapped. This is from the Pina Pizza restaurant episode.

                                                                                                        Also, look closely at the door as they change cameras. I might be wrong but it appears to change from a glass door with metal bars to a solid black door.

                                                                                                        Like I said, this show is hilarious as it is so poorly made but it is dishonest if you try to present this as "reality."

                                                                                                        1. If anyone out there still doesn't believe this show is fake, just watch the episode titled, "All in the Family." It takes place at R & O's in New Orleans, LA. I was talking about how fake this show is with someone and they said that the woman who played Dee Dee on this episode also was on another TV show she saw.

                                                                                                          Here is a clip from that episode:

                                                                                                          "Dee Dee" is actually actress Deenie Castleberry. Here is her photo on the Bravo show Work Out:

                                                                                                          I was also easily able to find her IMDB page:

                                                                                                          It is clearly the same individual.

                                                                                                          Anyone else out there still think this show is real?

                                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: DA989898

                                                                                                            Fake doesn't begin to describe this show. I like how all the people that are the subjects of his investigations all have bone conduction mic's in there ears. Look closely and all of the staff have them in there ears. Looks like a hearing aid. To add insult to injury this picture of the NOT so hidden camera from the friends with benefits episode number 27 in New Orleans. Dumbest show ever

                                                                                                            1. re: DA989898

                                                                                                              I thought I saw the guy that comes out in the commercial for the bank that gives a big reward; this person let the person behind him go before him and he won a big prize. Anyway this person was sitting at one of the tables, so he must be an actor.

                                                                                                              hope you can understand my wording, a little confusing

                                                                                                              1. re: dolly52

                                                                                                                Was it this commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRQGGH...

                                                                                                                Also, was the guy from the commercial in the clip I provided or did you only notice him when you watched the episode? If it was from the clip, please advise which time he appeared.

                                                                                                                1. re: DA989898

                                                                                                                  that is the commercial, I don't remember when he appeared, just saw it in passing and thought that he resembled the bank guy.

                                                                                                              2. re: DA989898

                                                                                                                Brilliant. You prove your point by providing a video link that requires purchase. Bravo.

                                                                                                                1. re: mrjombi

                                                                                                                  Did you watch the video? One can CLEARLY see Dee Dee in that clip I provided at 12 seconds in and it matches the photos from the IMDB link.

                                                                                                                  1. re: DA989898

                                                                                                                    Exactly...you can see a free preview of the video. And anyways, you also provided the IMDB page. I remember watching the show with Dee Dee and my husband was convinced it was fake.

                                                                                                                    Thank-you so much to DA989898 - the show seemed fake to me too, but I didn't realize that the TV channels would go so far...thanks to your sleuth work, I know that this is a scam show and it feels great to know that for sure. Thank-you!!!

                                                                                                              3. Ok, first off, there's NO WAY that the "Gunnar" character would have EVER let that blonde girl out of his sight in the first place. Secondly, I bartend in a restaurant that has been in business since 1958 and NO WAY would I ever do what he did with the "supply guy". I understand that this show is merely entertainment, but this episode went over the top. Where are the invoices? Where is the custom shirt? Anyways, I watch these types of shows b/c I do work in a family restaurant and I find the similarities funny, please just entertain me.

                                                                                                                1. Fake doesn't begin to describe this show. I like how all the people that are the subjects of his investigations all have bone conduction mic's in there ears. Look closely and all of the staff have them in there ears. Looks like a hearing aid. To add insult to injury this picture of the NOT so hidden camera from the friends with benefits episode number 27 in New Orleans. Dumbest show ever. But watching the extremely bad acting and ridiculously bizarre scenarios keep me slightly interested

                                                                                                                  1. It took one episode for me to notice some things were not right. In the U.S., people must sign a waiver to show their faces in picture or video unless they are in a public place or can be viewed from a public place (if you are in a private residence with the shades or curtains open and can be seen from the street, you have no right to claim privacy, thus you can be videoed from the street or sidewalk. Same with a restaurant.). In other words, restaurants are privately owned and can't use video from inside of anyone (faces) in the restaurant without permission, guest or employee.

                                                                                                                    The other thing I noticed is how willing these "fired" employees are so willing to go on camera. Would you? They just got "fired" and they stop to give an interview?

                                                                                                                    As someone else noticed, everyone has a mic on. A directional mic is not that good at picking up just the person targeted in the video shot.

                                                                                                                    As I learned while in broadcasting, there is no such thing as a "reality" show. All are scripted. The problem is, "reality" shows are not going away anytime soon. They are cheap to produce and big money makers. No big name actors to pay, small production crews, no production studio. Big money for the network.

                                                                                                                    1. I am amused because in the episode "Sleeping on the Job", the guy Peter who is pawning meat to get his cellphone back is also on the show "All Worked Up" on Tru TV. His car is getting towed in a Las Vegas parking lot after a bachelor night where he is left nude & flipping e tow truck driver off. Mystery Diners - fake. All Worked Up - fake!

                                                                                                                      1. Every person is clearly heard. Where is the boom mike?

                                                                                                                        1. As a veteran in the restaurant business, I find this show ridiculous. Don't get me started on the fact that the food network has attractive women, and the men are not so much. For instance, a puffy tired-looking Tyler Florence literally calls it in on Food Truck a Race. Or willie die gal in his too tight t shirts at the end of his yell fest. Then there's Charles and his giant moustache 'helping' troubled restaurants.

                                                                                                                          The show is ridiculous. There is not that much drama -ever. But if there is, then the owners really don't deserve to own their restaurants. Because they are big fools to let that nonsense happen.

                                                                                                                          After almost no research, one thing I found that no one has yet pointed out is that in the first MD (dumb dude who 'falls asleep and falls off a chair') - same dude who met 'supply guy' is a restaurant featured on Triple D. Why would a restaurant featured on Triple D need help?!?!!? People actually travel to these places and they have exploded!

                                                                                                                          It irritates me that people watch this nonsense. But that's the offering that the good people give us at Food Network, which I rarely watch anymore anyway.

                                                                                                                          1. Regarding the "Mascot Mayhem" episode, featuring Zippy's burgers in Seattle:


                                                                                                                            Commenters seem to think this was a prank Zippy's played on the show, not a story made up by the show itself.

                                                                                                                            I have no problem if some actual situation is being "dramatically recreated" (which would be no different than a show like Dragnet, for instance) but this was just silly.

                                                                                                                            1. I spotted the guy who played the manager of Redballs Rock and Roll Pizza and was fired on the "Cover Charge" episode on an episode of Container Wars this week. He never bid on anything and just seemed to be hanging out. The auctioneer addressed him by a different name than the one he used on Mystery Diners.

                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                              1. re: elgreene

                                                                                                                                My husband is a friend of an auctioneer who was on a Container Wars episode, and he was there for a taping. THAT show is totally fake. All pre-scripted, all items planted, all "experts" contacted ahead of time and ready with their schtick. On this particular episode, one "contestant" even brought her own "find" in case nothing at the auction was interesting. You guessed it, that was what she ended up "finding" and taking to her expert. If you watch the show, it was the fake Kermit the Frog muppet. All of these "reality" shows are fake.

                                                                                                                              2. It says at the end that some of the scenes are reenacted.

                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                1. re: 2243422

                                                                                                                                  "Some" being all of the good ones?

                                                                                                                                  We just busted you stealing but of course you'll come back into our secret hide-out, look at the film of it and laugh it off while politely agreeing to leave the premises?

                                                                                                                                2. I've got a question. Let's preface every episode of this show (and several others like it) with an announcer declaring "The story you are about to see is true. The names have been changed to protect the innocent." Is it more palatable then? Can we let "truth" be a bit more flexible for the sake of entertainment and perhaps a bit of education? I mean, we've done it before (we old folks have anyway).

                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                  1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                    The premise is that they are secretly filming real people. I don't think it would have the same appeal if it was introduced as a re-enactment.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: hal2010

                                                                                                                                      Agreed. This show is presented as a reality show, which in itself is funny, because what reality show on TV is not scripted & acted to some extent?

                                                                                                                                      1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                        Well that's all true, but Dragnet was presented as a sort of docudrama, complete with "mug shots" and follow-ups. Once it sinks in that Joe Friday did not in fact personally arrest all those people, you're still left with the stories.

                                                                                                                                  2. "I'm the new supply guy."

                                                                                                                                    that was the first hint that Santa was fake - I did not want to believe but once the wall is cracked there is no stopping it

                                                                                                                                    1. Just watched the "Dinner Drama" episode and I can easily prove it's fake.

                                                                                                                                      The main plot to this particular episode was a relationship between one of the waiters and one of the actresses at this restaurant/theater.

                                                                                                                                      However, along the way they find out that the bathroom attendant, BJ, is demanding tips from the customers and eating on the job. Neither the owner nor Charles Stiles knew this was going on before they started watching the hidden cameras. Charles Stiles actually mentions this.

                                                                                                                                      If you look in the control room you'll see photos of the mystery diners and both the waiter and the actress who the owner thought was dating. Guess, who's photo is also there from the time they first walked into the control room? BJ's! If they didn't know he was up to any wrong doing, why did they have his photo on the wall and not any other member of the kitchen staff, wait staff, or any actor?

                                                                                                                                      1. Read the message after the credits is says " some stuff eas added for humorous purposes And that the show was all real

                                                                                                                                        1. i should like to thank every one first for sharing there feelings.

                                                                                                                                          my interest is different then most in the publication of the show "mystery dinners", where i agree this is entertainment i also have used this as a tool to better understand our ever changing times of social interactions. the whys and wherefore of social malevolent and benevolent behavioral terms. i find that the show is not a re-searchable interest for my investigations, and can taint any others research as well if not understood that this is a relocation.

                                                                                                                                          i have not been able to cursory locate the publicists terms of productions involving its liability clause. a potential violation of federal communication laws. while involving all participants of the media. I.E. both party's must be notified prior to any video or voice communication as allowed by the state level governments in the United States. failure to present the combined agreements to all party's violates the code in any state except for 3 states that allow one party only to be notified of video only but not recorded conversations in any state.

                                                                                                                                          to quickly examine the political and judicial ramifications i have observed that each of the 3 party's ("mystery diners", "business owners", "employees") have disclose in a public forum many federal violations. in that all 3 party's are liable for reporting after the fact. i have found no evidence in all cases that this has ever been adjudicated pertaining to the offence and the businesses being represented in the television series shows.

                                                                                                                                          it is then my belief that it is likely these are case files from other entity's that are being reproduced under the premiums of an entertainment capital exercise. whereas this may not be strictly labeled as fabricated events it is air apparent that the federal, state and local authoritys are not pron to seek criminal remedy's from the crimes being committed/shown in this media.

                                                                                                                                          should i be in error i would love to enter the debate.

                                                                                                                                          1. I always thought it was odd that the actors who work undercover as employees will start their segment by saying something like "I started working here a couple days ago and haven't noticed anything unusual." It's a little too convenient for the actors not to notice anything for a couple days before filming and then all of the bad stuff just so happens to occur when they're filming it.

                                                                                                                                            Also, they had a new episode in which the owners were complaining that one of their employees was dating one of his daughters (who also worked at the restaurant) and that he was cheating on her. He also mentioned that customers were complaining of having things stolen at the restaurant. The guy was obviously flirting with female customers and kissed one of the customers. As to why the daughter hadn't noticed this if it's so obvious at work is beyond me. But that's not even what was the most fake. During the show, this same boyfriend models a purse for some female customers. He then has a male co-worker in advanced age model the purse. He is shown walking around for a little bit in plain view of everyone in the middle of the restaurant. He is depicted as a nice gentlemen who is a bit physically slow due to his older age. He takes a lunch break outside with his lunchbox and is seen by the hidden cameras to put what could be booze in his drink. Charles has one of the Mystery Diners go outside and check it out. After about a minute, she walks back and says "Charles, he definetely smells like whiskey". This is news to the owners as they never suspected him of any bad behavior on the job. If he so clearly smells like whiskey, how come no one who works at the restaurant suspects anything and mentions it to the owners? But that isn't even the thing that is the most fake in this episode! It turns out that the woman whose purse was being modeled by the older man had her wallet stolen! It turns out that the wallet is in the older man's lunch box. How would this older, slow moving man be able to steal a wallet from a purse in such a short amount of time in plain view of everyone in the middle of the restaurant? Even if by some slim chance that no one in the restaurant was paying attention when he did it, surely Charles and any of the guys in the control room would have caught it as they were clearly watching him model the purse and commenting on it when it happened. If it was real, they would have one of the Mystery Diners confiscate it ASAP so that the customer would get her money, ID, credit cards, and other important stuff back right away.