Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Food Media & News >
Jul 1, 2013 09:17 AM

6/30 Food Network Star - Spoilers

So what did you think of the star challenge? It seemed very awkward to me - was Damaris sampling the punch as she made it? maybe it was just nerves... but she really seemed toasted by the time Alton got to her. I thought Stacy did a good job with her presentation and her Guests.

I was sorry to see Viet go.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The star challenge was stupid. Some of them got a very easy "mishap" whereas other ones, like the fire alarm or the lights going off, was way bigger. But, I was kinda shocked at how bad many of them were. It's like, you know it's a test for how you do on live television, so why would you stop if something happened? Just keep going! I feel like it would be common sense.... but maybe it's one of those "harder than it looks" sorts of things.

    1. Is it just me, or does it seem like it's now Stacy's to win or lose? I'm just not seeing too many of the others as viable.

      Rodney (sucker, can't understand), Chris (TALKS TOO LOUDLY, and not totally likable), Russell (too "chefy") all have issues of one sort or another.

      Nikki (giggly and insipid) and DeMaris (too flirty, too overtly "sexy" in her actions) don't exactly inspire a huge amount of confidence.

      So that leaves Stacy as the only sane contestant with not a whole lot of production baggage. She seems a little deer in the headlights sometimes, but she does pretty well on camera most of the time.

      20 Replies
      1. re: DiningDiva

        I was thinking that too. Rodney is OK sometimes, but really bad other times. Plus I think his "pie" viewpoint is too narrow to make a show that can last more than a few episodes. I don't mind Chris, I liked watching him on Food Truck Race, and he seems to know what he's doing, but he is a little loud.

        1. re: juliejulez

          I agree Chris isn't bad and I dont' remember him being that LOUD on the GFTR.

          For some reason I have yet to put my finger on, Nikki just rubs me the wrong way. I really like DeMaris, she's cute, she's spunky, but she's too damn twitchy and a little all over the place.

          1. re: DiningDiva

            I don't watch the food truck show, but I find Chris really annoying and LOUD. Besides, I still have no idea what his all-important POV is, so I don't see how he could win. And I think Rodney would be cool to hang out with at the bar for an evening, but I'm not sure I'd watch him make pies.

            I'm kinda' pulling for Chad, as he's local. But can the man please visit a barber for a shampoo and cut? Besides, last I checked, FN had no shortage of BBQ, including Bobby Flay.

            I can see checking out Stacy's show. She's upbeat, but not too perky. Of course, I don't know how long an "updating the vintage dishes" show could run.

            1. re: gaffk

              "And I think Rodney would be cool to hang out with at the bar for an evening, but I'm not sure I'd watch him make pies."

              Gotta definitely agree with you there :-). I bet he's got some great stories that can only be told in a bar.

              I think the updated vintage could last until they found something else to do with her.

            2. re: DiningDiva

              I think Damaris would be great on the "travel and eat" kind of show... where she just has to go chat and be goofy w/ the owners and eat.

              1. re: juliejulez

                But where would they go that hasn't already been done before?

                I vote for giving her a show called the Drunk Chef. Liquor her up and let her go.

                1. re: Firegoat

                  Who knows....they seem to keep coming out with new travel/food shows so they'll come up with something for her too.

                  1. re: juliejulez

                    Maybe "Best Happy Hours in America?"

                    1. re: Firegoat

                      I think Sandra Lee already has this show- she parlayed her shrill little mating call "Cocktail Time" into an actual show

                    2. re: juliejulez

                      My guess as to travel shows is that, for one, they are very cheap to make, and for two they keep the talent busy between their regular gigs. You could hire Bobby Flay to make 52 cooking shows in a year, but does he have 52 decent shows in him in a short time span? Or give him a show for a regular season and then let him drift the rest of the year, perhaps finding a better home?

                      It's surely more efficient to give Alton Brown a paid motorcycle vacation eating doughnuts in St Louis than to burn out his existing brand with new shows, or groom a new host to fill the airspace. That said, where the hell is Baron Ambrosia this year?

                    3. re: Firegoat

                      I like that! I miss The Galloping Gourmet.

                2. re: juliejulez

                  I think you could pull off a pie show if you wanted to really go out there with it. Include some history of hand pies for the working class, shepherd's pie etc.
                  I would like to see him do a hotdog pie.

                  1. re: Firegoat

                    Nothing to add here, I just want to say that " hot dog pie" made me laugh out loud for real. I don't know exactly why. Maybe I sipped a bit too much wine while cooking dinner, ahem.

                    1. re: Firegoat

                      The pie thing would be ok for a season but probably couldn't be sustained unless turned into a Chopped-like challenge to make pie from these ingredients: frozen blueberries, canned black olives, arugula and head cheese.

                      1. re: C. Hamster

                        I could watch an all pizza pie all the time show

                  2. re: DiningDiva

                    On the pie guy: I keep thinking of the Sandwich King. How did that work out for him and the FN? Not so much. I see the pie guy in the same too-narrow boat.

                    1. re: pine time

                      Actually, I think it worked out pretty well. He's going into the 3rd "season" of his show, he had a 2nd show on FTV and was nominated for a Daytime Emmy.

                      1. re: DiningDiva

                        Wow. Had no idea. Thought he had fallen off the radar. Okay, solider on, Pie Guy.

                        1. re: pine time

                          Sadly, I've eaten Pie Guy's pies and they are ... not good. My opinion was the exact same as the selection committee's a few weeks ago -- the crust was tough and flavorless. The filling was ok, but I couldn't get past the crust. It's my favorite part of pie. Such a bummer. As a result, despite wanting to see a hometown boy make good, I can't in good conscience root for him.

                    2. re: DiningDiva

                      I have to admit, I like Stacy. She has a really nice quality about her. I have liked her since her appearance on Restaurant Impossible. That said, I really don't think I'd watch the shows of any of these contestants. The only concept maybe is Chad and the BBQ. Is is also pleasant to watch.

                    3. viet seemed to get suckered punched ..."heres all your food" all your food is now gone?? that is a lot worse than ooops you have to use a fork.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: girloftheworld

                        And he was first. So it was most likely that he would have been thrown off his game.

                        After he (and others) got back to report to the other finalists, they knew to expect ... something ... was going to happen.

                        1. re: chicgail

                          No, they kept those who'd done their challenge separate from those still waiting to go. Hence the crowd got bigger in the room where they we;re asking "what did they do to you?".

                        2. re: girloftheworld

                          I totally agree. I think they should all be judged on the same challenge.

                          1. re: C. Hamster

                            ITA with same challenge for everyone, and if a person like Viet got a show, a live challenge would probably not be relevant...not every FN chef shows up on the Today show to demonstrate a recipe.

                            Although with PD off the roster, they might need someone who can do that.

                          2. re: girloftheworld

                            I agree that his surprise challenge was worse than others, but he also flubbed the call in question. I mean, how hard is it to think "three dips, different colors, guac, salsa, and maybe a cheese dip"?

                          3. Soooo, your "bit" was perfect- and that's what you need to be careful about. Not to seem to perfect. Huh?? Really??/ say what Alton?

                            (He said that to Stacy- she needs to seem more vulnerable)

                            I just don't get this show anymore- and with that episode- I'm done. I find it totally lacks credibiltiy (when exactly was this 4th of July special aired "live"- and who were the people that called in?????)

                            10 Replies
                            1. re: maisonbistro

                              re that 4th of july live thing, I figured it was a "simulation" of a live event, with "actors" calling in the questions. I mean, those questions were really all softballs.

                                1. re: DGresh

                                  I just wish all of these shows- Master Chef, NFNS- didn't treat the viewers as idiots. I find it insulting that they present it one way, and just assume we will accept it for what it is. You're going live in 4,3,2,- yes, a live audience.... out there in TV land, and people are even going to call in.... Seriously????

                                  1. re: maisonbistro

                                    And why was a call in situation a "Fourth of July" challenge?

                                    Isn't the 4th a huge day for home cooks?

                                    1. re: C. Hamster

                                      Ummm, because the "live" show never really happened. Was it July the 4th 2012? no. It was fake from the beginning. It wasn't "love" on Food Network or anywhere for that matter. Logistically it is impossible. Forget about the whole keeping the identity of the dismissed contestants a secret... I mean, if that showed last year or any time for that matter- we'd all know already that Danushka was outta there, along with the other elimintated contestants.

                                      It's a fake and a fraud and i find it insulting that the Food Network doesn't think we;d notice.

                                      1. re: maisonbistro

                                        With no apologies for the FN, I didn't think that this episode was pretending to be live. I thought it was designed to recreate what it could be like on a live broadcast for the participants with all the things that could happen in that scenario.

                                        As for the Fourth of July scenario, it was obvious that since this show was shot and edited (at least) weeks ago, that it wasn't REALLY the Fourth, but shot to be "timely" for the viewing audience. Happens all the time. Annoying and silly IMO, but done because some producer planned the shows with a calendar in front of him/her.

                                        1. re: chicgail

                                          My own approach to shows like FNS or NIC is that they are not competition shows, they are auditions presented as entertainment. It's not surprising (as has been commented elsewhere) that many contestants, or rather applicants, have media experience and are not just people who cook well; they are being considered for a tv show.

                                          And not necessarily equally. If by this point it was clear Viet wasn't ready for a show, it's fine to give him a challenge that would really throw him off. It's not meant to be fair but to put contestants up against their weaknesses.

                                          Conversely if Stacy is getting softballs it's because she's a strong contender. It's an audition. There is nothing wrong with that, and nothing gained by making things hard on a likely finisher.

                                          Every show on FN has to be taken with a grain of salt when it comes to reality and fantasy. Iron Chef is a wholly phony premise but an apparently real competition. Every cooking show is framed by a story about how we're going to play volleyball afterwards, or getting ready for a gluten-free bachelor party. But the cooking we accept as a legitimate dish, or we find another show.

                                          Then again it's been made clear that there's so much hidden sabotage on Chef Hunter that there's no point, for me, in watching it. I guess my point is that for all the complaints we read here that "all these shows are fake", it's really a matter of whether they are fake in a way that bothers me and real in a way that entertains me.

                                          And ultimately they can take Viet's peppers away all day long. In the end he lost because he can't put together a simple chip dip. Nothing faked about that and nothing to defend.

                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                            I agree with what you are saying- Yes, well know it's fake- so what bothers me is that the producers, networks pretend that we're too stupid to know it's fake.

                                            In response to Chicgail- I am pretty sure they intended everyone to believe it was happening live - because they said it so many times- with no caveats.

                                            1. re: maisonbistro

                                              They did say it several times, maisonbistro, but I don't know what they intended "everyone to believe."

                                              I thought that was at least as much for the audience - or to reiterate that the challenge was for the finalist to operate AS IT it were live.

                                              But for anyone (especially the contestants) to actually believe it the calls were spontaneous audience questions challenges credulity and their intelligence - unless, of couse they think Santa Claus really does make toys in the North Pole that he flies around the world on December 24 on a sleigh pulled by reindeer.

                                              1. re: chicgail

                                                What? there is no Santa!???? damn my parents were right I needed to be careful on an adult site!

                              1. There's really only one answer in response to whether or not NFNS is a credible show: Guy Fieri.

                                20 Replies
                                1. re: JonParker

                                  Does Guy Fieri represent for you that NFNS is credible? Or not credible?

                                  His show runs endlessly on FN - and many of us find him a complete waste of airtime. So I guess there is more than one answer, even if you consider Guy Fieri.

                                  1. re: chicgail

                                    I have never watched a complete episode of any of his shows... so I cant really judge..unless that in itself is a judgement.

                                    1. re: girloftheworld

                                      In one of his DDD episodes he hung out with Joe at Joe Squared in Baltimore, which was one of my favorite hangouts, so I did watch that episode. Still, ugh.

                                    2. re: chicgail

                                      I've been posting on Chowhound since 1999 (which frightens me a great deal) so I thought it would be obvious that I find Fieri not only a waste of time, but actively offensive. The man is horrid.

                                      1. re: JonParker

                                        i guess i shouldnt say Wow before i was born should I ?

                                        1. re: JonParker

                                          Sorry I hadn't noticed your particular point of view about GF. At the same time, I'm relieved that it pretty much matches mine.

                                          1. re: JonParker

                                            I think the critics agreed with you when they reviewed his restaurant!!

                                        2. re: JonParker

                                          I truly do not enjoy GF or his shows but, by definition, he is a FN star. BTW... love Joe Squared!

                                          1. re: kimmer1850

                                            I think GF suffers from a common FTV ailment...over exposure. When one of their hosts connects with the view audience, FTV has a long and littered track record of over using them ad nauseum until the audience is thoroughly and completely sick and tired of them. Emeril, Rachel, Paula come to mind.

                                            Bobby has come dangerously closed to being over exposed as has Giada. I suspect what saved Bobby from going over the cliff is that most people seriously disliked him when he first started on TV. Then 3 things happened, Throwdown w/BF showed a kinder gentler side, he got married, and he's gotten older and mellower. The viewing audience's opinion changed and he's become a pretty solid performer for FTV without being some silly caricature the FTV has dreamed up for him. Giada had her baby just at the right time; absence made the heart grow fonder for her while she was away.

                                            Guy has gone over the edge into the abyss of over exposure and caricature with an annoying and silly personna that almost just begs for people to take shots at him. But, to use his term, he's "money" for the advertisers and as long as that continues, we'll probably be subjected to more of his antics. DDD has been a money machine for him, the production company, FTV, the advertisers and the places featured on it. As Jerry Maguire me the money

                                            1. re: DiningDiva

                                              Youmare so right about Bobby Flay. I couldn't stand him but he really has mellowed out and it was very obvious whe he did Worst Cooks. He had a sense of humor and compassion.

                                              1. re: DiningDiva

                                                That's a great synopsis. Yes, Guy has bought into his own hype. The purpose of his show is for him to show off what he knows. I agree that Bobby and Giada have mellowed and are much more like-able now.

                                                1. re: DiningDiva

                                                  Another agreement on Bobby Flay. I was just thinking about it the other day (I need to get a life), he seems the most "real" out of all the judges on NFNS. I like watching his brunch show on Cooking Channel and the new BBQ Addiction show on FN too.

                                                  I was watching a very old Giada show the other day on Cooking Channel... must have been from the first season of Everyday Italian, and she was very mellow then, much like Rachael Ray was at first. Then things got amped up, her shirts got lower cut and she became kind of a caricature., and now I'm not crazy about Giada. I will say she was one of the ones who "taught" me how to cook back in 2006. I still keep a few of those early recipes in my repertoire. The SO thinks she's hot.

                                                  1. re: juliejulez

                                                    Bobby's Brunch is an excellent show. It's everything put together from soup to nuts.
                                                    Giada- also she used to speak at normal volume, now she whispers so much it's annoying. Then there's the "creamy" drinking game.
                                                    Alton has a permascowl and at times, looks like he's passing a porcupine. I do appreciate his straight forward nature.

                                                  2. re: DiningDiva

                                                    I agree with you about Bobby, I couldn't stand him all the way back to Hot Off the Grill. Throwdown redeemed him.

                                                    On the other hand while I've never been a fan of Giada watching her on FNS really showed her bitchy, stuck up nature. I still don't like her although she has toned it down in the last season or two.

                                                    1. re: rasputina

                                                      Is it just me or does she seem to look more and more like a Polly Pocket doll?

                                                      1. re: girloftheworld

                                                        Yes, but the neckline is not low enough!

                                                        1. re: girloftheworld

                                                          I always thought of her as a bobble-head doll: you know, her head is way to big for her body.