Passing Opinion Off As Fact Since 2009

Passing Opinion Off As Fact Since 2009

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A One Screenshot Top Chef Recap: Week 4

This season, the Cheftestants might be entitled babies with antagonistic relationships with the judges, but they sure seem to get along (the picture shows two "alpha-males" performing the ritual known as "fist-bumping" that is oft popular with friendly "alpha-males”). Maybe it is because the competitors are a bit older than usual, maybe it is the result of having already seen oneself on TV*, but so far every one has been on their best behavior towards each other**.

This politeness has not necessarily worked out for everyone involved. Spike's mastermind tendencies were trumped by his couth this week. While old Spike would have forced Jamie to serve her eventual losing dish because it would be in his best interest, new Spike seemed hesitant to press the issue too much. It was this same reasoning that allowed him to trust the ever so sneaky-looking Angelo. His elimination came as a result of this jovial attitude***.

He also got eliminated because his food was not good. The hope is if you remove the mind games inherent in previous seasons, then it will be simply about the cooking. Will this last after the more agreeable sorts (Carla, Antonia, Tiffany, Jamie, Mike) are gone? If anything, this seems like an environment where the front-runner with a proclivity for choking, Blais, can easily win.

* There is a great NPR post about the question, "What does a person who's seen herself on television do differently the second time around?" It compares Jen and Tiffany's behavior.
**There have been so squabbles, bickering, and name-calling but it has been comparatively mild. It sure seems like them spend more time dancing.
***I would not be surprised if the savvy Spike was conscious that being on his best behavior was important for his long-term branding.

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