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Another round of celebrity torture, this time in the guise of one of the countries top chefs, giving a punishing two week cookery course to some of the nations least known celebrities. Broadcast on ITV1 and ITV2 over a period of two weeks, we saw an intrepid gang of lesser celebrities, suffering, swearing, working like dogs, thrusting and parrying verbal fusillades, with the ubiquitous Gordon Ramsey.
I think one of the best things about this ITV reality show, is that Ant and Dec weren’t in it. Though I suppose they could have balgged their way in as celebrity diners?
I thought this was a great show, marred slightly by the ever present ‘B’ and ‘C’ list celebrities on this type of show. I was an avid watcher, and only missed a couple of nights due to prior arrangements, and the final show which was a bit of a shame, though I knew who was going to win by that point and lost interest.
Gordon Ramsey was the star of the f*@king show of course, and up to his usual antics. I liked Gordons other shows like the most recent one he did about ailing restaurants, and how he tried to put them back on the right track, and how they ignored all his advice and went straight down the f@*king pan again. It’s funny how people always think they know better than him and always come off regretting it.
I think most people watched the show, to see Gordon laying in to the stars every night, and giving then the tongue lashing of their lives, I know I did, I didn’t really want to see Matt Goss turn into a Michelin chef over two weeks, from cooking that spag bol concoction that he made as his signature dish, as Gordon quite rightly described as sh*te and threw it in the bin. I wanted to see our loverly Gordon, haul his b**locks over the coals and humiliate him , and he did just that!...nice one Gordon. My only regret is that he wasn’t actually allowed to physically beat the celebrities, and leave their battered remains out in the garbage dump with the potato peelings.
It was interesting to see how the two groups of celebrities formed mini alliances, between themselves, and it was pretty obvious Who they wanted to go next.........wasn’t it Edwina? I think they were deliberately put into two groups, the blue kitchen and the red kitchen, so that they would end up competing against each other, and the frictions would eventually “boil” over, for our enjoyment and entertainment. Why else would we watch, than to see people who have than us, live “better” lives than us , have more money than us going through HELL. When enough celebs had been kicked off, the two groups combined to make one super group of talent, and they were from there picked off one by one.
It’s the kind of show where the strongest personalities are supposed to rise to the surface and become the dominant ones, in a kind of “Lord of
Pictures of Hell's Kitchen
Devils Advocate ?
the Flies” scenario. Big Al Murray, thought he was the dogs b**locks, until he got booted off half way through the series, which was nice, liked to see him getting his comeuppance. He was getting far too confident and good at it, with his “yes chef”, “no chef”, and suddenly,. f.. off, Al yer out !........I think the voting from the viewers was also a bit of devils advocate, and a lot of the people were voted to stay because it would cause more grief, for poor old Gordon, and the rest of the crew of the good ship, “Hells Kitchen”.
And what about poor old Jean-Pierre, the hapless matre d’, who took Gordons insults like water off a frogs back, actually I think he was Belgian. I must say he was very good, I bet he’s heard it all before, and much worse besides! When Vic Reeves asked for two fried eggs on toast, I thought Gordon was going to have a seizure, but good old Jean-Pierre took the order anyway, knowing full well that Gordon was going to chew his b**locks off, and in the name of entertainment, presented the order to our erudite hero. Gordon blew his top of course, poor old Jean-Pierre got his summary humiliation, and Vic, funny man, Reeves, got nothing, but his share of vitriolic abuse, when he went to enquire about the whereabouts of his egg buttie.The audience, or should I say clientele for this gastronomic masterpiece, where yet another cornucopia of celebs, some actually a bit more famous or memorable. I think the best wheeze on Gordon, was to invite more celeb, “super-chefs” to his purpose built restaurant, to taste his creations. He genuinely cacked his pants when that geezer what’s ‘is name ?, ......looks like Nigel Kennedy?....top chef anyway........came in to the restaurant, and the food critic of the Guardian. I felt almost sorry for Gordon, as his hard earned career, was washing up on the beach in front of him. You could almost hear him crying inside. Luckily thanks to some culinary dedication from our band of heros enslaved in the kitchen, their standards had improved, to wit, Gordons lifes work was rescued from the bin bags of the vegetable peelings , in the nick of time.
You have to hand it to Gordon when his team came up with the goods, he genuinely praised them, and was so it seems genuinely happy, ........no, overjoyed even. He is a very passionate man about his work, and if he thinks people are just taking the p*ss, he gets justifiably angry, I don’t think he was just playing it up for the tv cameras either.
As regards the actual food cooked up, there was the continuing saga of the souffles, this was a bit of a black hole, and the only celeb who really cracked it, was James Dreyfuss, I think, what with his souffle and his “perfect” risotto,(as proclaimed by Gordon, so it must be true!), he was my tip for the winner. I think he carried the show along with Big Al and Gordon for most of the series, with his slightly irreverent attitude to the whole thing, he did try hard, and I think he deserved to win. His comedy antics provided a good foil to the tension of the show, Gordons almost fever pitch rule of the kitchen, and the weariness of the other contestants. The pace was beginning to show about half way through the series, when the hapless celebs realised they had to get up a 6 O’ clock in the morning to start work, on the food prep, and work through till 12 O’ clock at night, when the last covers were served. I bet they thought they were just going to turn up in the evening for a bit of a “barrbie” and a few drinks......think again guys!
The burgeoning chefs had the chance to create their own signature dish to go on the menu at Gordons desecration, he picked two winners each night , including Al Murrays fish pie, and Edwinas game bird, which she herself turned out to be.
The eventual winner was a bit of a surprise to me. Jen, off “Brookside”, came away with the chefs hat, I didn’t see the last show , so I don’t know what the actual prize was ( an evening out with Gordon perhaps?). she admitted that the only thing she cooked at home was “chips and mcnuggets”.......eeeeerrrrrrrgghh.........you just buy those don’t you? Confirmed by the arrival of her scally boyfriend, who admitted that the only thing he’d had off her at home, was chips and chicken nuggets......Her signature dish was errr....wait for it ........err Chips?, perchance. Chips and a big lump of meat. Perhaps she has that at home as well. I don’t think it was much of a dish, she didn’t even serve it on a plate, maybe they do that at home as well, who Knows. Maybe she should have served it out of a newspaper.
It is of course the public who decides, who wins, and who loses, so I suppose it is better to be popular, than popular to be the best! After all its all a bit of a roman arena, this reality tv lark, and its just a case of who you are going to throw to the lions next.
I was moved to see how upset some of the celebrities were when it was time to go. Belinda Carlisle was literally in tears, and looked genuinely gutted. The other celebs looked equally aghast as the dreaded Edwina had outlived her, on the show, and Poor Gordon looked mortified. But go she did, which was a shame because I liked her she came over as being very genuine, and was well liked by the team.
As were talking about favourites, I’ll have to give you my choice for harridan of the kitchen, and it’s not Edwina. Its that senile old luvvy wot used to play that, Alma, off Coronation Street, wots ‘er name Amanda .......summink. Cor blimey ...............stone the crows guvnor.....what a wind up! Every time she opened her mouth she was winning or grumbling about something, I thought to myself if it’s so bad why don’t you just GO HOME! She was obviously too old to be there, it’s a frenetic pace, long hours, hard work, if your not up to the job then just GO. I think she should have committed showbiz hari kari, and left the show of her own accord. Long before she was voted off, I think she was angling to get kicked off the show only didn’t have the balls to leave. When she started to upset poor little Abi, with some petty little squabble, I was almost throwing things at the tele, and I think I uttered a few “Gordons”. They should have put her on the menu, and done her as a spit roast, but then not many people like mutton done up as lamb.
The ‘orrible Edwina was almost as irksome, Gordon was truly gobsmacked when she told him to SHUT UP, “you silly old man”, I think he was truly dumbfounded, that she had stood up to him, which was as I can see the only point of the pathetic retort and didn’t prove a thing. He put her on washing up duties for the rest of the night, serves yer right Edwina, I’m only surprised there weren’t more salmonella quips, though there were a few about her nocturnal activities with the former prime minister.
Tommy Vance turned up for a brief guest appearance, I don’t know what happened to him, I think he was just too laid back for the show, maybe he just fell asleep somewhere in the corner of the kitchen and they forgot about him. He was the supposed replacement for the only “cook” on the show, Roger Cook, who put his fat arse through a deckchair, in the “chill out” area on the first night and broke his ankle. He would have probably started an investigation on Gordon, as to wether he was a real chef or not, and did he know that there had been several complaints about his bad language!
The whole "diabolical" experience was held together by (popular) front man Angus Deyton, who desperately tried to grab a few choice words with Gordon at the end of every nights show, needless to say he didn’t get any. We didn’t have to endure too much of Angus and the only other thing he did was to ask a few exalted diners what they made of the experience. Most of them replied “I’ve been sitting here for hours and I’ve only had a bloomin bread roll”..boo hoo. I think some of them even ended up at the Indian take away at the end of the first night (yes seriously), because there had been nothing to eat.
I think Gordon was genuinely impressed and relieved by the end of the two weeks, and was probably amazed to find his culinary and celebrity reputations still intact.
I think it was very brave of Gordon to put his reputation on the line like that, I know he likes the publicity, but he’s pretty famous already, and being on the tele as he said himself is not his day job, and has a successful Michelin restaurant already. I noticed he was on the Jonathan Ross show last week, so maybe the wheels of celebritydom are still turning, for him.