Monday, October 29, 2007

Have some humble pie; I know you know what that is.

I was watching the beginning of "Next Iron Chef" last night, although I haven't seen all of it. I chose to watch "America's Most Smartest Model" instead. But I did watch enough to discover the challenge for this week: Design an airline meal, to be served in-flight.

HMMM, sounds familiar! I thought about not caring, but then I remembered that I had read an article where Alton Brown, who hosts "Next Iron Chef", had slammed "Top Chef" and generally acted superior. You can read the whole thing here: Food fight for the next Iron Chef.

I must admit that I did not read the whole article when it first appeared because the blog I read it on (TOP CHEF: THEY COOK. WE DISH) titled the article so well that it was obvious Alton had nothing but contempt for Top Chef. But I read the whole thing this morning. OK, so if I had read it, I could have complained about the airline challenge then, because it lists it among the challenges. But I was surprised to learn that Alton Brown not only has contempt for "Top Chef" (in that he thinks his mom could do that), but he feels that his show is far different from any other cooking show. Observe:

Make no mistake, said Brown, "The Next Iron Chef" isn't a run-of-the-mill reality, cooking show. This has been a food fight with flair between hardened experts -- so don't expect another version of Bravo's "Top Chef." [emphasis mine]

Really? When you've copied one of the challenges almost exactly? When every challenge has an arbitrary time limit? When you have two challenges per show, one non-elimination challenge that gives people an advantage for the elimination challenge? There's even the same number of judges! I don't mind "Next Iron Chef" being so gimmicky because the whole show is a gimmick anyways. If anything, "Top Chef" should be less gimmicky because the goal there is for them to open a restaurant where they won't have stupid rules. Iron Chefs will always have a time limit and secret ingredients so it's not as strange to hamper them with time limits and surprises. I like Alton Brown and all, and I like "Good Eats", but I think his comments will come back to haunt him.

P.S. I feel I must point out that Lufthansa > Continental. So that's something.

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