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I'm Quitting Hell's Kitchen, Anyone Else?

So far, I've watched every season, frequently cringing, but still watching. I can't do it anymore. These contestants are such incompetent trailer trash I just can't take it anymore.

Plus, the formula is so obvious. Start with a group of questionably competent cooks who have no idea about how to work in a brigade; humiliate them in that milieu, and then watch as some of them slowly come together.

At the end, you end up with two highly talented competitors who cook beautiful food who must have been in hiding until the finale. What a joke. Except I guess the joke was on me because I've been watching until now....

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  1. They're smart to schedule it when there is no other first run programming. And it is beyond repetitive. I'm only watching between innings and that's enough

    1. Do you want some affirmation or what?

      1. I quit it after the first few shows in season 1.

        1. I quit it three years ago but DH still watches it, so I'm stuck... I read my book and try to ignore all the back-biting, sniping, and unprofessionalism on the screen.

          1. If a new season is on, I guess I have too!

            I'm catching up on several seasons of Chopped, which I find very entertaining.

            3 Replies
              1. re: jbsiegel

                I watched one last night that featured one chef (the winner) who suffered from severe depression, one who had had a massive aneurysm and a huge surgical scar on his head, one who suffered from some sort of nerve damage and could barely use one hand, and one who had been adopted at birth and has been fighting hard her whole life (the runner up). Really good show and the winner and runner up produced excellent dishes. Also, my family will be in Portland next month and will be trying the runner-up's cafe (158 Pickett Street Cafe).

                This was the sardine/yak steak/mangosteen/mandarinquat episode. All hail the DVR!

                1. re: jbsiegel

                  I love Chopped too! And I actually learn alot about different foods watching it.

                  I have given up on HK as I am tired of the screaming, the burned or raw risotto/scallops/beef Wellington, and the incompetent people who dare to call themselves a cook let alone a chef!

              2. I quit years ago. So obviously staged and ridiculously phony...

                12 Replies
                1. re: jbsiegel

                  Which aspects are staged and phony?

                  1. re: tommy

                    I'm seriously hoping this was said in jest!!! ;-)

                    1. re: jbsiegel

                      Going from past memory, the contestants are seemingly picked solely for their willingness to kill each other with no concern as to if they can even cook, the editing is rapid-fire and so lowest common denominator. The show has also had events that were blatantly staged (e.g. matredee's brother incident, which I think was season 5?). Finally, outside of immensely better performance from one team over the other, every contest of every season comes down to a final tiebreaker, seriously?

                      1. re: shezmu

                        I believe some of the contestants are chosen from cooks with a past history as carnival workers.

                        1. re: shezmu

                          "Finally, outside of immensely better performance from one team over the other, every contest of every season comes down to a final tiebreaker, seriously?"

                          That's the way the competition is set up. It gets down to individuals. The teams, assuming you're talking boy vs girl, are broken up early. Seriously.

                      2. re: jbsiegel

                        Rigging a game show is illegal. Do you think it is rigged? That said, as Ramsay has the final say, he could likely do whatever he wanted.....

                        1. re: dbrodbeck

                          Good point about the rigging. My problem with all these "reality" shows is that there are SO many ways of manipulating it without violating the "rigging" rule. I think it would be GREAT if they would do one and show it without all the manipulation and whatnot. I would be that would be really interesting!

                          1. re: dbrodbeck

                            You have to have clear rules for how people get to be on the show, as well as what constitutes winning or losing- but the actual game itself? That can go however you want. As long as your winners and losers did so according to the rules, and you can point to signed paperwork indicating that " they ought to have known"- you are more or less free. No rules against manipulating the viewer's perceptions, either- unless they have a substantial say.

                            1. re: kgray96057

                              It's not a "game show." Any laws that may exist for such things clearly do not apply to reality shows.

                          2. re: jbsiegel

                            There's a former contestant who got fairly far on the show who's spent the years since then as head chef at a number of places around here. He claimed that production intentionally screwed with the stoves in order to pretty much make it impossible to cook a steak properly with them, and did a number of other things to make the contestants look worse than they really were.

                          3. I watched 15 minutes of one show when they first started. Never bothered with it again. Good for you for regaining your normal brain functions.

                            1. Couldn't make it through the first episode whenever that was.

                              1. What could be more entertaining than watching a dozen dozy line cooks try to make beef wellington while being screamed at by a Scottish egomaniac every week?

                                1. Decided last season that I needed to preserve my brain cells and dumped it from the DVR.

                                  1. I made it through the first season but that was it. Thank goodness for BBC America where his better programs are shown.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Sloth

                                      Absolutely. His BBC shows are actually all very very good and most are available on netlix/hulu/amazon prime. I particularly like the F word, although it doesnt come on anymore.

                                      1. re: twyst

                                        I've always watched the F word, but I don't see it anymore either

                                        1. re: iL Divo

                                          Me too. Looks like BBCAmerica has dropped that (are new episodes even being filmed anymore?), & it's only "Kitchen Nightmares" they continue to show.

                                    2. BB, I'm with you. I have now taken it off my DVR recording list and erased the ones that taped.
                                      It's too much and you're right, it's always exactly the same and the cussing melee just turns my stomach, it's all too much and it's banal in it's existence.

                                      it's simply of no interest to me any longer, it lost it's luster with the first season. then I heard that the gal that won for the Red Rocks Hotel Casino in Vegas didn't even end up being the head executive chef.

                                      I'm convinced if you don't curse or swear or have hundreds of tattoos or drink or smoke, they don't accept you on the show to begin with. and then there's always the Beef Wellington and John Dorey................................................so tired

                                      7 Replies
                                      1. re: iL Divo

                                        Wellington, Dorey, Risotto... All stuff designed to make problems for the cooks.

                                        1. re: kgray96057

                                          Yeah not sure why people have issue with the menu. It's not as though they are invited to eat it (although I have). It's stuff that for whatever reason challenges the cooks. That's why it's there. That's how you make a friggin' TV show interesting.

                                          1. re: tommy

                                            "That's how you make a friggin' TV show interesting"

                                            interesting to who? the same ole same ole same ole is not only not interesting, but I may as well just watch past seasons of the show...only thing new is contestants.

                                            1. re: iL Divo

                                              To the hundreds of thousands of people who enjoy the show.

                                              1. re: tommy


                                                ^^^new interests are always a thought^^^

                                                1. re: tommy

                                                  It's gotta be more than 'hundreds of thousands' otherwise the show would not be renewed year after year. Unless of course the key word is 'enjoyed'. Then you might be correct.

                                        2. I have never watched a complete season of Hell's Kitchen. I will watch an occasional episode. I will not however watch The Next Food Network Star any longer. I watches all the episodes for a couple of years. This year I watched the first episode and parts of some others. I have not watched in several weeks now because it is so lame.

                                          1. I gave up a couple of seasons ago. I think the last season I watched was with the guy in the cast? The cast just kept getting worse and worse, season after season. By the time I stopped watching it, I could buzz through an episode in 20 minutes, skipping all the 'coming up', repeated footage that they showed you before and after the commercial, teams being arses when returning from rewards, teams being arses when losing challenges, 'customers' being arses trying to get on camera, Ramsey being an arse...

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Sooeygun

                                              Pretty much this. However, this only goes for the American version of the show. Never checked out the UK version of the show but I know Marco Pierre White was the chef for a couple seasons so it can't be too bad.

                                            2. This show is not only bullshit, but it's BAD bullshit. It's not about food, not about cooking, not about restaurants. It's about how much abuse someone will tolerate for a chance at a little fame and a little fortune. It's an ersatz boot camp, where they ostensibly hone your cooking skills, rather than your soldiering skills, as well as something of a geek show for the viewers. Watch Gordon fake having a stroke over the crappy risotto this clueless bastard pumped out. What did Gordon and his staff really do to help him? How much effort did they really put in to helping him learn before Gordon's spitting venom? Gordon's not only a good cook, he's a damned fine chef. Watch any of his UK shows, when he isn't motivated to do his money making bad boy act. He can be a jerk- but he's not a flame spewing viper.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: kgray96057

                                                "What did Gordon and his staff really do to help him? How much effort did they really put in to helping him learn before Gordon's spitting venom?"

                                                These questions lead me to believe that you aren't understanding the spirit, or the intention, of the show.

                                              2. I can't quit Hell's Kitchen. I watched a few minutes of it once a few years ago, changed the channel and never came back.

                                                1. I need an intervention ...

                                                  I'm watching the whole deal start to finish. Season one to today.

                                                  I'm on season 3. And watching this season too.

                                                  I can't explain this.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: C. Hamster

                                                    I think "reality" shows in general have keyed in on a winning formula to hook viewers, which, ironically, is all about losing. They are cast so that the viewer is more invested in wanting a loathsome or clueless participant to get dumped than the preferred one winning. I suspect that the Germans, who have a way of condensing a complex psychological/philosopical concept into a single word (e.g. Weltschmerz), have or will have a term for this. Not knowing what that might be, I humbly submit an English neologism: fanimosity.

                                                    1. re: greygarious

                                                      ". . . the Germans . . . have a way of condensing a complex psychological/philosophical concept into a single word (e.g. Weltschmerz) . . ."

                                                      Yes, and the applicable German word for these reality shows is Schadenfreude: taking pleasure in witnessing other people's defeats or misfortunes.

                                                  2. Just saw a promo last night for Hotel Hell with Ramsay. Sounds like the hotel version of Kitchen NIghtmares. Supposedly it's a two night thing in August. I actually might get sucked into that one - only a two night investment!

                                                    5 Replies
                                                    1. re: jbsiegel

                                                      Ah, yes, Hotel Hell. I saw the commercial and was hooked when they pulled out the black light.

                                                      1. re: Allieroseww

                                                        There are some matters of which we are meant to remain ignorant. Gah.

                                                        1. re: ennuisans

                                                          Seriously...those hotel exposes with blacklights and germ analyses make me even more squicky about staying in hotels. As much work as camping is, at least I know who's slept in my air bed and that the sheets were washed!

                                                          I expect much yelling and outrage from GR, but what will substitute for "it's RAW"?