HOME > Chowhound > Food Media & News >

Discussion

Cutthroat Kitchen

Apparently someone decided that what is most wanted in cooking reality shows is more sabotage.....

http://eater.com/archives/2013/07/09/...

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. I find this concept to be embarrassing and insulting. Less about producing good food, and more about what a jerk you can be.

    Food and cooking should be fun, a thing that equalizes, educates and brings people together.

    This concept is sad and mean.

    11 Replies
    1. re: cheesemonger

      and IMO so beneath Alton Brown.

      1. re: coney with everything

        I agree.

        Unfortunately, his trajectory mirrors that of the FN in general. More about personality than food. I know this has been going on for a long time, but I hate to see Alton caught in this slide. His food science stuff was so great- informative, a little silly and fun- does he do that anymore?

        1. re: cheesemonger

          I haven't listen yet but he has a newly-started podcast (The Alton Browncast) which has so far featured Justin Brown, Bobby Flay, the FNS finalists. (I just noticed there's one with Hugh Acheson which, yeah, I need to listen to that).

          They are audio podcasts, though, and while he does have some video cooking in the works I'm not sure for whom. But he's said several times he would cook on FN again if they would "let him".

          So he wants to do food television, and food television has gone to a dumb place. I think he's adapting as well as he can, and in this show is feeding the idea that people want conflict and drama in their cooking competitions. Going from backstabbing to frontstabbing isn't a terrible concept imo.

          1. re: ennuisans

            I agree about the wanting to do food telly part, but the concept of this show is so disheartening. I am hoping against hope that the playful aspect, rather than the mean one, comes through. But only a little hopeful.

            The podcasts are terrific, btw. Check them out.

            1. re: nikkihwood

              The podcasts really are wonderful.

              I've heard comedians talk about podcasts being a way for them to do exactly what they want and not have to worry about networks/studios/producers/etc. Brown's podcast really feels like that in response to Food Network. If his options are Cutthroat Kitchen or nothing - then he can cash the Cutthroat and NFNS checks and then put out what he "really wants" on his podcast.

              It's on the Nerdist network, so while I'm sure he's not going to be harsh to his primary employer, but it's not just a Food Network dog and pony show.

      2. re: cheesemonger

        I noticed in one of the fast-action, frenetic preview shots (sorry, producers, but that style is much more suited to your "12-year old boys watching Animal Planet" demographic than a cooking show) that the poster child for mean girls everywhere, Penny, is in one of the episodes.

        Penny was the older middle-eastern woman on Next Food Network Star a few years back. She may have behaved horribly as her "schtick" to get attention (and it worked!) but I don't recall that she had much talent for cooking anything other than middle-eastern food. She did love the camera, though.

        I wish the Food Network would lose her phone number.

        1. re: juliasqueezer

          I noticed her right away too and couldn't remember if she was the weirdo with the puppets on Hells Kitchen or on NFNS.

          I seriously also thought I saw Lovely in a promo but that was probably a gin and tonic induced hallucination.

          1. re: C. Hamster

            Oh dear. Please, not Lovely. She may be a talented cook but I just cannot get past the concept of someone actually naming themselves "Lovely".

            Wait. Maybe we should all rename ourselves! I pick "Brilliant".

            1. re: juliasqueezer

              Just call me "Enchanting."

              Seriously, I *thought* I saw her on a trailer but have no idea whatsoever if that was her.

              It's something she'd do, though. And be good at.

          2. re: juliasqueezer

            This episode had Frank who competed on one of the first seasons of Top Chef. I was surprised to see Antonia judging.

          3. re: cheesemonger

            FN Reality TV, what do you expect.

          4. Sort of like the merger of cooking and pro wrestling. Anything to draw an audience...

            1. It`s not about the cooking anymore, fun and games. contests. We all need to make our concerns heard at the food network.

              9 Replies
              1. re: Ruthie789

                Ruthie789, they don't care. They want ratings, and their audience research tells them that 'we' want contests. Even the Cooking Channel is going down this road. Unfortunately.

                1. re: nikkihwood

                  I'm really surprised at the increase in contest shows on the Cooking Channel. When the Scripps people launched the Cooking Channel, it was supposed to be a refuge for those of us who wanted to watch cooking shows, not contest shows or travelogues.

                  1. re: gfr1111

                    When CC was launched I was reminded of when MTV became so clogged with other entertainment that they launched MTV2 as a music-video-only alternative. It didn't last either.

                  2. re: nikkihwood

                    I`m inclined to think it is cheaper to hold a contest than it is to have a contract signed by a good tv cook or chef.

                    1. re: nikkihwood

                      Sure 'we' want contests. That's what 'we' talk about on this forum. How many threads are there about 'pure cooking' shows? Not many. When we do talk about instructional shows, we talk about hairdos, voices, mannerisms, anything but the substance of the cooking. The only good instructional shows the old ones, the ones we watched when we were learning to cook. Now all the instructional shows are too simple, too dumbed down.

                      1. re: nikkihwood

                        It's important to remember that we are not the target audience.

                        1. re: scubadoo97

                          Do they reallllly want the Duck Dynasty audience?

                          1. re: girloftheworld

                            yes, if the advertisers will pay. Isn't 'The Shack' (or something like that) aimed at that demo?

                            Would you prefer that they aimed at the Downton Abbey crowd?

                            1. re: paulj

                              the food might be better

                    2. Alton as donned water skis and jumped the shark.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Withnail42

                        Agree completely. That was dreadful.

                      2. A contestant and judge from Top Chef?

                        Yes ... I am watching and it's not as bad as I imagined.

                        8 Replies
                        1. re: C. Hamster

                          I recognize Antonia but which contestant was on TC? Do you remember what season?

                          1. re: dmjordan

                            Frank was on Top Chef in one of the first seasons

                            1. re: wincountrygirl

                              Season 2, I think with Marcel and Ilan.

                          2. re: C. Hamster

                            Frank was on Top Chef during the marcel ilan season.

                            1. re: C. Hamster

                              Ah-ha! I didn't start watching until Season 3. Thanks.

                            2. re: C. Hamster

                              I agree that actually on watching I enjoyed the show overall.

                              However, I think the judging process needs to be changed. I'm not sure whether it should be Chopped style where the judges watch the cooking, or if the judging should be blind to the cooking - but I'd like the judging to vaguely acknowledge that they know things have happened.

                              When Antonia asked Frank why he made bread for his sandwich (when it was required of him due to the auction), it wasn't dynamic TV judging. Telling someone, you should have used a light, fluffy roll for this sandwich - when essentially the rules of the challenge prevented that doesn't help anyone. What would have been more interesting is if she's said "I know you had to make your own bread in a short period of time, you should have tried doing xyz instead" or "Given that you had to make your own bread, I guess this is the best that could have happened".

                              The judging is a huge part of Chopped, so I don't know whether or not it needs to be that prominent on this - but Antonia appeared clueless to any restraints in a way that didn't work for me.

                              1. re: cresyd

                                i agree... I think part of the skill is over coming the hand you have been delt... and if the judge is clueless to this you just appear to be bad at what you do.

                                1. re: girloftheworld

                                  Yeah - I understand that part of the show is that essentially everyone is being judged on the same scale. If I'm lucky and get no auction penalties and a competitor gets a Swiss Army knife and has to use powdered milk, then by this competition's design I'm supposed to get an edge.

                                  But I'd rather hear the judge say "if you only had a Swiss Army perhaps Y would have been better" or "you didn't succeed in masking the powdered milk's grainy quality - sticking with this idea and not switching to something new was a bad choice". Having Antonia judge the food just on it's merits seemed overly rigid and serious.

                            3. I liked it. It's actually educational in its way, seeing the choices made to overcome this or that.

                              One risk is what we almost had happen with the premiere, where two strong cooks hammer on each other and weaker cooks skate through. But so far it's in good humor, and that's cool. I'll bet Danushka shows up sometime.

                              1. It ain't cooking. It's entertainment. Well, it's really getting ratings for sponsors.

                                I hated Chopped at first, but that grew on me. We'll see.

                                1. AV Club did a review. I think I'm glad I missed it.

                                  http://www.avclub.com/articles/cutthr...

                                  1. I am glad it was not actuallllllly people running around behind each other like frantic gobblins ... Disapointed in the low level grocery demo asile cooking.

                                    1. I thought it was a complete trainwreck and couldn't watch to the end.

                                      Instead I will continue to watch UK Masterchef (you can find it on UTube).

                                      The hosts are pleasant and funny and generous (though they do criticize if necessary). There's also a dish prepared by one of the judges, with technique shown.

                                      There's no nastiness between the contestants, no drama.

                                      Also, all the contestants cook at least three dishes in their first round so you can redeem yourself from a bad dish.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Chatsworth

                                        Are you referring to the M.C. UK Pros? It's showing in the US on BBC America, and there's a thread about it here in Media, too.

                                        1. re: pine time

                                          No, I haven't seen that one yet. I've been watching the home cooks edition, just Masterchef UK.

                                          I don't get BBC America unfortunately, but I think you can get an earlier season of Pros via YouTube.

                                      2. I'm done with Food Network. All they show is competitions, which bore me. Seems like every evening is a marathon of Chopped whenever I blow by it on the menu.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: Lambowner

                                          You should be watching in the morning with the other housewives :)

                                          Instructional shows have always been more common during the daytime hours than primetime.

                                          1. re: paulj

                                            Last time I checked in on daytime TV, it was all game shows and soaps. FN manages to combine those into a night time wasteland tablescape.

                                            1. re: Lambowner

                                              edgar morrow is rolling over in grave more than Guy says off the chain ....

                                        2. Honestly, this feels a bit like my dream food competition show.

                                          6 Replies
                                          1. re: FoodPopulist

                                            It's a shame, isn't it, that you have to add the 'honestly', while others are freely proclaim 'I hate it', without any apologies. :)

                                            1. re: paulj

                                              I can understand why some people might think that I am trolling them, although I do admit to enjoying a bit how this show might annoy people who I think are too serious and want cooking to be a snobby cultural pursuit which allows them to feel superior to other people.

                                              I've always enjoyed games. Card games, computer games, etc. I like the potential this has to be a fun, light-hearted competition with a lot of game-y aspects.

                                              I also like being able to laugh at some of the comically bad attempts to trash talk.

                                              1. re: FoodPopulist

                                                Two of us in this corner, FP. It's goofy fun and I'm fine with that.

                                                1. re: ennuisans

                                                  Put me in that corner as well. I think it's fun to watch and see the crazy ways the contestants have to work around the auctioned-off sabotages, and there seem to be some interesting strategies to play against each other. The fact that the winner only gets to keep the money left after bidding really makes it more of a challenge.

                                                  My sweetie really enjoys the show as well, much to his surprise. He's usually bored out of his mind by the cooking competitions I like to watch (Top Chef, Chopped, etc) but thinks this one is great. So at least it's something new we can watch together.

                                                2. re: FoodPopulist

                                                  I saw it last night for the first time and I liked it too. I thought it was pretty funny

                                                  1. re: FoodPopulist

                                                    No issue with someone liking the show. Not a snob, just can't get excited about someone having to cook with Cheetos.

                                                    jb

                                              2. I watched the new episode last night. I don't think I'll set the DVR to record every episode, but I might watch it again if nothing else is on.

                                                1. Episode 1x05, Winner Winner Fried Chicken Dinner...finally, someone smart who understands how the game is played.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: FoodPopulist

                                                    He was really smart about the game.

                                                    I think that his competitors weren't so savvy on bidding, or ended up spending a lot on items that didn't benefit them so much. However, he was really smart with the pantry. Doing things like taking all the bread and eggs cost him nothing and really tied up his competitors.

                                                    1. re: cresyd

                                                      Pretty savvy for someone who, presumably, had not seen the show yet. The first contestant I actually rooted for.

                                                  2. My now long-considered and highly unscientifically derived strategy at this point would be to pass on ingredient auctions and win utensil ones. Almost every time processed or otherwise fake food is in play a judge will catch it, but I can't remember that ever being a reason anyone was kicked out.

                                                    13 Replies
                                                    1. re: ennuisans

                                                      did you think using the meat slicer was "almost"cheating... after all ALton said they would have to use the tiny cheese utensils for all their cutting needs

                                                      1. re: girloftheworld

                                                        Almost, although there was one before where a chef opened a tin can and used the lid for slicing. If the rule was only "we've replaced your knives" then I suppose everything else is fair game. ?

                                                      2. re: ennuisans

                                                        I think the other smart tactic is that once a person is given one disadvantage is to keep giving them disadvantages. First - if they're getting disadvantages, then they're not spending money - so in later rounds you're with people who have similar amounts of money. Also, while most contestants can deal with one or two disadvantages - once it gets to 3, things get pretty difficult to overcome.

                                                        1. re: cresyd

                                                          i was wondering if you could just stand there and not bid on anything.

                                                          1. re: girloftheworld

                                                            Sure, if you don't mind making french fries from instant mashed! Or an omelet on the back side of a skillet.

                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                              see that was just un creative..a ring mold and he could have held enough egg together to make a mini- omelte and passed it off as the latest at tasting brunches...

                                                              1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                What made you think he had access to a ring mold?

                                                                1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                  Because they are always using them to plate with..they seem to be a standard piece of kitchen equpiment lying around there like a mixing spoon or muffin pans... and if not he could have made one with foil

                                                                  1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                    That all sounds very reasonable. The contestants aren't exactly geniuses.

                                                                2. re: girloftheworld

                                                                  See, they've got you hooked already! Viewers who think they can do better the contestants make the best fans. :)

                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                    see..but i wouldnt want to spend my money.... that is what would get me...I would think Iffff i just stay quiet over here they may forget about me..

                                                                    1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                      I think one contestant has been sent home without spending any money, iirc.

                                                                      Kori was a lot of fun to watch but I gotta admit Brock's solutions to the Bananas Foster challenges were pretty good. Unfortunately it seems that if the bananas were cooked enough, they were doomed to fall off the stick. A double skewer might have helped, but oh well.

                                                                      1. re: girloftheworld

                                                                        http://www.foodnetwork.com/videos/cut...
                                                                        post show videos - discussion of handcaps with the judge

                                                          2. I'm watching a new episode right now... they showed a burlap bag that was labeled "potatos" as one of the items that could be bid on. No that is not a typo. It was misspelled on the show. That's rather embarassing.

                                                            17 Replies
                                                            1. re: juliejulez

                                                              I watched FN's latest 'train wreck' a couple of times. Not again!
                                                              Just when you think FN couldn't get any worse along comes AB AKA 'The Sell-out' involved with a show some FN's executives' ten year old child dreamt up.
                                                              It's like 'Noises Off' with food. Very disappointed in you Alton. Some one ought to sit you down and explain what you are doing to your 'brand'.

                                                              1. re: Puffin3

                                                                I watched this crap while exercising. Unfortunately, it was the only thing on, what a waste of time.

                                                              2. re: juliejulez

                                                                yay-- a misspelling that wasn't mine!

                                                                1. re: juliejulez

                                                                  I watched that episode last night. Even if you hadn't pointed it out to me in advance, it was PAINFULLY obvious! I thought you might have been referencing something that was a background element—y'know, just a "passing glance" sort of thing. But no. That was front and center horrible. Damn. How could Alton just let that one slide?

                                                                  1. re: Baskerville

                                                                    I thought the misspelling was intentional - like a joke. Not a good joke, but a joke.

                                                                    1. re: Baskerville

                                                                      You are referring to a man who has shown what he's willing to let slide by being in this despicable piece of crap.

                                                                      jb

                                                                      1. re: JuniorBalloon

                                                                        http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=...

                                                                        It's a shame isn't it. Alton used to be such a high class performer!

                                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                                          High class? Not so much. Good Eats was good food information delivered with a campy style. Nothing to be ashamed of there. Making people cook with Cheetos? Shame, shame, shame on Alton. :)

                                                                          jb

                                                                          1. re: JuniorBalloon

                                                                            http://www.foodnetwork.com/videos/cut...

                                                                    2. re: juliejulez

                                                                      the burlap bag says $POTATO$ on it.

                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos

                                                                        I had to review the post show video a couple of times to be sure about your observation, but yes, there are fancy $ before and after the word, not a misspelling.

                                                                        http://www.foodnetwork.com/videos/cut...

                                                                        Evidently some people just have to find flaws, even when they really aren't there.

                                                                        1. re: paulj

                                                                          That flaw may not be there, but there are plenty of others. Fro the life of me I can't understand why anyone would watch this show. I watched 2 mins of that clip and I think Antonia can't believe she did this show and had to eat the crap they made.

                                                                          jb

                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                            LOL you had to review it several times? People above said it was OBVIOUS front and center and painfully obvious a mistake.

                                                                            :D

                                                                            1. re: Firegoat

                                                                              $POTATO$

                                                                              is not what "People above said it was OBVIOUS front and center and painfully obvious a mistake." It may not be exactly what we want to see, it may be a prop made for the one or two seconds it was quickly shown on camera, but to make it a focal point of the failure of the show... is a bit much. The show in it's concept, as well as so many others on FN and other networks, is a failure.

                                                                              Alton Brown said early on in his FN career, he is employed as an advertising vehicle. FN is in the business of making money. That's it. Food is just the advertising vehicle for making money. They don't care what we (especially the small group of dedicated CHOWHOUNDS) like, just as long as Foodies watch so they can sell ad space.

                                                                          2. re: Gastronomos

                                                                            I'm not in a place where I can watch the video currently to confirm, but I'm relieved to hear that! I'm not out to look for flaws. I'm a huge Alton fan, and I'm actually enjoying the show very much. Even had someone not pointed it out to me, I would have interpreted it as "Potatos" still, due to the short time frame in which the bag is shown. I redact my criticism! Though, I do wonder...why "$POTATO$"? That still seems a bit odd to use the singular.

                                                                            1. re: Baskerville

                                                                              My guess is that the labeling on that bag was a spur of the moment choice by some flunky in the props department. They are constantly creating generic product labels for shows like Chopped.

                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                It was a silly filigree.

                                                                                 
                                                                        2. I was surprised to see Tiffany Derry on tonight.

                                                                          12 Replies
                                                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                                                            You mean 'CC' is still running on FN? That's got to be a mistake.
                                                                            Maybe we'll get lucky and they'll only tape a couple more. Then they can replay all eight or whatever episodes endlessly year after year like 'Survivor Man' episodes going back to 2005.
                                                                            I hope good old Les Shroud is making a buck (literally) each time they run an episode. Thinking probably not though.

                                                                            1. re: Puffin3

                                                                              Dig that: the show premiered August 11 and is still running new shows every Sunday.

                                                                              1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                I saw someplace that this Sunday episode was the last of this season. But I also have a vague memory of FN being so confident about the show that they had ordered 2 seasons to begin with. If so we might start seeing new episodes 3 mths from now.

                                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                                  I vaguely remembered that as well, and apparently season 2 is in the can as season 3 begins taping December 1.

                                                                            2. re: ennuisans

                                                                              as a contestant? Antonia Lofaso gets to be a judge (and a terrible one at that).

                                                                              1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                                Up in the Susie's office is one of those drums that's used to drop out Bingo numbers.
                                                                                FN puts the name of every contestant and every judge from every show they've ever made on a ball. On Fridays just before lunch a few executives show up at the office: "OK boys and girls. I know we all want to be out of here by noon so lets get going. We need to be working on three new shows. I'll crank out the balls and you Sally will write the names down of the first ten balls. These will be the contestants. Then I'll crank out four more balls. These will be the judges. Then I'll crank out one more ball and that person will be the host. Just like we always do. Anyone have a better idea for the show's name than 'De Laurentiis' spelled backwards?"

                                                                                1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                                  http://blog.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/2...

                                                                                  I forgot to watch CK last night, but went ahead an watched the after-show this morning.

                                                                                  1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                                    I can't believe I didn't connect those two. But yes, as a contestant. And her Top Chef win didn't get included in her mini bio at the beginning.

                                                                                    1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                      I don't think Tiffany won.

                                                                                      1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                                        Well I'll be darned. My mistake!

                                                                                        1. re: Worldwide Diner

                                                                                          I'm watching it as a rerun and can't believe Tiffany is on CC.

                                                                                          She was on the "Angelo" season won by Kevin Spraga.

                                                                                          Antonia, Frank and Tiffany. I don't get the Top Chef connection

                                                                                          1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                            It could be worse. I just saw Blais as a judge on Fieri's game show.

                                                                                  2. I watch cooking shows on the 2 cable channels. I refuse to watch frantic preparation shows like Iron Chef and the spin off competitions. I don't know what positive activity the producers of such crap are trying to prove?

                                                                                    I'm in my mid-70s and cooking is a joy, not a chore or a contest. I watch the cooking shows that are constructive and instructive in nature.

                                                                                    I agree with 'coney with everything' about Alton Brown. His 1/2 hour shows were always instructive even with the oddball humor.

                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: ChiliDude

                                                                                      So you are commenting on a show that you refuse to watch? :)

                                                                                      1. re: ChiliDude

                                                                                        The reality of tv ratings is that shows like Chopped, Top Chef, Masterchef, and Hell's Kitchen are some of the highest rated cooking shows on television. And I think I've heard that Chopped is the highest rated show on the Food Network. Basically the notion of trying to give viewers "more of what's worked before" is fairly standard network thinking.

                                                                                        I've been pleasantly surprised by Cutthroat Kitchen. I don't wildly dislike it for the most part.

                                                                                        1. re: cresyd

                                                                                          There was a brief mention on the 20th FN Aniv. show that it takes more than 100 people to produce Chopped.

                                                                                      2. So I'll admit that I occasionally watch this show - but what I do not understand at all is the complete lack of basic strategy contestants seem to have. I understand for the first few season not having a more solid plan - but it has now become a bit "why don't you people get this!!!!"

                                                                                        My main strategy complaint is that people do not seem to understand that having more money at the end of the show is better. Therefore if someone spends money on a sabotage and gives it to all other competitors - then if you spend money on another sabotage, don't give it to the person who already spent money but to the person with the most money! However, it seems like the vast majority of contestants just want to payback whoever initially gave them a challenge.

                                                                                        I think I've clearly spent too much time watching this show and thinking of strategy points - but that point just baffles me.

                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: cresyd

                                                                                          I am. myself. baffled by your strategy cresyd. Each contestant as $25,000 to spend. If they win and have money left they get to keep it.

                                                                                          If a contestant sabotages someone who has a lot of money and they get eliminated, it goes back to the production, not to the person who sabotages them or who wins.

                                                                                          Why would it be better to sabotage someone who has money, rather than someone who might be a threat? Is there something I am missing?

                                                                                          1. re: chicgail

                                                                                            Ok - in an episode, a common first sabotage offered is one that would hurt the other 3 contestants. Say that contestant spends $6,000 leaving that contestant with $19,000 for the remainder of the show. The next sabotage comes up and is to inflict on one person. (let's say they also spent $6,000) The winner of that next sabotage often gives it to the first auction winner creating a situation where everyone has one sabotage.

                                                                                            First - when everyone has an even "spread the wealth" of sabotages it's far less predictable who will ultimately be eliminated. However, if our auction winner #2 gives this second sabotage with someone who still has all $25,000 it increases the likelihood of them not overcoming all the challenges (not to mention if they get the third sabotage). Why this is a benefit is that in later rounds - I'd rather be competing with someone who has the same or less money than me than someone who has more.

                                                                                            I'd rather go into the last round having more money than my competitor. In the last episode the final round had a woman with $3000 and a woman with like $20,000 or something. The woman with more money won the first auction, but for whatever reason gave up on the second auction. However, I'd rather know I can outspend my competitor than gamble on her being cheap.

                                                                                            1. re: cresyd

                                                                                              From what I've seen, I think the strategy should be to try to pile multiple sabotages on a single competitor. The player with the most cash is the player least likely to have spent anything, and thus the player most likely to have been sabotaged, but I wouldn't target a player who simply has the most cash.

                                                                                              One flaw I notice is that there's not enough recognition of when a contestant is so terrified of getting a particular sabotage that you can drive up the bidding with no intention of winning so that your opponent has less cash available in future rounds.

                                                                                              1. re: FoodPopulist

                                                                                                I think the dog piling (particularly in round one) usually ends up coinciding with who has the most money (or one of the people with the most money). But yes, ultimately create a situation where one person essentially has as many sabotages as possible.

                                                                                                In addition to making sure that someone saving their money leaves - you also ensure that someone who may now be upset with you leaves. Since clearly the cooks on this show have such fragile egos that you risk the chance of having another chef target you.

                                                                                                I also think that in general in the first round the sabotages that go to all of the other contestants are ones where people a) are willing to spend lots of money but b) the least valuable to spend money on.

                                                                                              2. re: cresyd

                                                                                                "The winner of that next sabotage often gives it to the first auction winner creating a situation where everyone has one sabotage."

                                                                                                This always leaves me shaking my head. Dogpile, dudes! Kill the weak. It may make some sense to think that if you spread the pain it's more likely that someone will trip up, but my preference is to pick one player and bury them. And, as you say cresyd, try to kick out the one that's holding on to their money for later.

                                                                                                1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                  Some of the people hoarding cash are timid bidders who will let you get sabotages for cheap even though they can hammer you with their cash reserves.

                                                                                                  1. re: FoodPopulist

                                                                                                    The reality of that is that there's no way to know. There have been timid bidders who make it to the last round with like $20,000 and then realize - hey even if I have to spend $10,000 - my chances of winning go through the roof. I haven't seen anyone in the last challenge come back from having both sabotages.

                                                                                                    Basically it's more of a psychology gamble, and I'd rather have the confidence going against a free spender than guessing if someone's a timid bidder.

                                                                                          2. Finally blew through all of the online content that I missed. I loved that Alton Brown made deviled eggs one of the challenges specifically because guest judge Giada hates them.

                                                                                            I think the main purpose of Cutthroat Kitchen is so Alton can do the after-show, which he can use to prove how smarter he is than the contestants. Which is the kind of thing I might do in his position.

                                                                                            1. New online content - cutthroat kitchen test kitchen. A short video of the staff testing one of the sabotages for feasibility. It's nice addition.

                                                                                              1. Tommy from Hells Kitchen was on last night but he was bald and mentioned cancer....

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                                                  Said his grandmother died of it a few years back.

                                                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                                                    TNX

                                                                                                2. Tonight's was my favorite episode so far. I'm normally not a fan of cocky chefs but Sammy won me over.

                                                                                                  1. Idiot show, the host is annoying, and the chefs cannot show truly what they can do. The best chef does not win. I hope this show get's cut from production soon.

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: torcoo7

                                                                                                      Not likely. It's one of FN's top rated shows at the moment.

                                                                                                      What show did it displace that you like better? You can always switch over to Pawn Stars, or Real Housewives.

                                                                                                    2. This Sunday (June 1) will be a judges competition: Lofaso, Tila, Zakarian and Majumdar.

                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                        I have to admit - I started this thread and thought this show would be awful, but I do enjoy it now.

                                                                                                        1. re: cresyd

                                                                                                          What a difference a year can make!

                                                                                                        2. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                          I was wondering how long it would take before they did one of those. I've been looking forward to it.