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TomCorps

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  1. TomCorps

    S14.09 The Newest Star

    BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! ..... Just had to get that out. I absolutely enjoyed Manny's pilot most of the three. He genuinely interacted with the chef throughout, adding in "food authority" comments when appropriate and demonstrating humor and personality as well. Christian the Slob did all of the talking, and none of it was informative, interesting or remotely charming. Jess the Phony did the same shit she's been doing since Week 1, highlighting herself via scripted bites ("Well, my mother is from Madagascar and my father is from China.".....REALLY? HAD NO IDEA!). Giada's....er, observation...that Jess had "grown so much" over the course of the season was probably my most hate-worthy moment of an altogether loathsome night.
  2. TomCorps

    S14.08 Who Gets a Pilot?

    So much this.
  3. TomCorps

    S14.08 Who Gets a Pilot?

    Who knew ambivalence could be so aggressive, but that's precisely what I feel for these three. Who gets a pilot? Who cares?? Okay, I really dislike Jess the Poseur (her lips always look like they're going to slide right off her face during her talking heads), so I guess that's antipathy which is more than ambivalence, but just the same. I never thought I'd wish for the days of Penny Dreadful and Danushka the Douche-ka.
  4. TomCorps

    S14.07 Can You Host an Icon?

    I can't seem to muster enthusiasm for any of the "top three" here... Manny seems like someone I would like IRL, and I do think both he and Christian can cook, but if this season isn't the death knell for this series, I can't imagine what would be.
  5. TomCorps

    S14.E06 Shark Night Dinner

    I was wondering about this myself. He won last week making a pasta dish, but we didn't see him actually making the pasta. May have been edited out, but if so, why? That seems like the essential step in getting the job done.
  6. TomCorps

    S14.E06 Shark Night Dinner

    Me too! And I remember it like you do. For me, the 70's Italian-American-Pride thing actually began a year earlier, with Rocky. Just a "regular guy from the neighborhood" with a dream and a heart as big as all outdoors. Who couldn't love a guy like that, and what kid wouldn't feel proud to share an ethnic and spiritual heritage with him? And then younger, cooler Tony Manero from Saturday Night Fever. Oh, the time I spent and the damage I did trying to blow-dry my hair exactly like he did... I think, however, we're talking about two different stereotypes. Neither Rocky Balboa nor Tony Manero was loud or crass, and I didn't think Dom was either. Yes, I too could have picked Dom out of a line-up as sharing the same demographic as we do, but it's not the demographic, per se, to which I object regarding Christian. It's the wiseguy / junior thug persona that makes him unwatchable to me. His affect on camera is closer in spirit to Jersey Shore than to Saturday Night Fever. They're not the same thing. This may seem like to-may-to, to-mah-to, but I know I liked Dom (although clearly not as much as Giada did) and I don't like Christian. I felt like I shared something with Dom, and wouldn't have minded watching him on a FN show. Christian makes me want to roll my eyeballs and walk in whatever direction is furthest from him.
  7. TomCorps

    S14.E06 Shark Night Dinner

    Same here. I didn't include the second half of your sentence (..."but she's just not cut out for this kind of thing") because I don't think any of these people are ready-made to be the host of a food/cooking show at this point. I think Palek has genuine talent with food, and is eminently watchable. Give her a show with an experienced director, a fleet of support staff and a reasonable amount of time to shoot, and I think she'd be terrific. She's certainly the only one of this crew I would watch. Having said this, I don't think there's a chance she's going to win this utterly stupid competition. I fear that "win" is going to go to Christian. Sorry, but I just can't stand this guy. Not a single second. Cringe-fest 2018. Maybe I'm more sensitive to this because I happen to share the same ethnicity and am also NYC, but Christian represents the worst of the Italian-American stereotype. Come to think of it, didn't Bobby shoot down the young Latino fellow in one of the first episodes of this season for being a "cartoon" version of the Latino male? And what part of Christian's bada-bing shtick isn't an awful stereotype? Mind you, I'm not saying I think Christian is a phony. I absolutely know Italian guys--plenty of them--who revel in this affect. I generally avoid such guys (and their guidette counterparts) like the plague; they're selfish, unimaginative oafs. Not at all what I want to see, or if I do, I'll watch reruns of The Sopranos, because at least the writing was elevated so it was either genuinely funny or incisive. And shame on shark-teeth Giada, being of Italian descent as well, for not being woke enough to call out the stereotype for what it is. Amy is a really remarkable kook--er, I mean cook...I think. How she got here, two seasons in a row, is endlessly fascinating and amusing to me. She's become the poster child for everything that's wrong with this show at this point.
  8. TomCorps

    S14.E05 Take This Title and Run With It

    So happy for Palek, and so not sorry to see Jess the Poseur go. While Palek has had a tendency to be a bit subdued in her presentations, she's always struck me as completely genuine, exactly the opposite of what I felt watching Jess all season long. I never thought Jess was going to be the big winner here; every time she was on camera, I found myself thinking in the voice of Holden Caulfield: what a phony! To begin with: a food novelist? Really?? I mean, we can all think of literary plots that grew out of interaction with food, such as Like Water for Chocolate, or Proust and that madeleine, or (heaven help us) Minny in The Help and that "terrible awful" pie. But these are one-offs for writers. I'm sure that neither Laura Esquivel, Marcel Proust nor Kathryn Stockett would have labeled themselves "food novelists," at least in part because the label is absurdly limiting. And pretentious? Gawd, yes! I love samosas, and Palek's left me craving them like mad, from the first description to that epic crunch. Hearing the crunch gave me the closest experience I've ever had watching FNS to actually being there tasting them. I knew just what the sensory experience would be like, what they would smell like, taste like... Mouth watering food porn. I thought Fran Drescher was graceful and lovely. Shame on me for always expecting her to be a ditz, and then always being surprised at what a thoughtful, smart lady she is. I know, it's because of the "voice" and the characters she's best known for playing, but just the same... She should be sitting in the judge's seat instead of LBH.
  9. TomCorps

    S14.E04 Panic on the Panel

    You do know that "jade," when referring to a woman, suggests one who is meretricious: flashy but lacking substance (implicitly, moral substance). All of which is code for "prostitute." Give a listen to the song from Andrew Lloyd Webber's Evita entitled, "Peron's Latest Flame." Listen closely for the ensemble shouting, "Slut! Dangerous jade!" You'll see what I mean. It's apt.
  10. TomCorps

    S14.E04 Panic on the Panel

    Man Alive! Who pissed in Giada's corn flakes?! I think what disturbed me most about Giada's aggressive response to Harrison is that she was in fact responding to his rhetoric, not his judgment about food. Granted, he didn't parse his thoughts well. When he was asking, "Could you add ricotta (mascarpone, etc.)?" he wasn't actually asking, "Could one do this?" I think he was trying to suggest that if she had added any of these things, it would have improved the dish for him. In other words, he was attempting to give a kind of "judgment," but was so intimidated by the bitch that he delivered it in a way that was misleading. Anyway, Giada's epically bitchy, "Yes, Harrison, you can make anything you want!" betrays her inability to understand even the first thing about this dynamic, let alone her inability to accept anyone else's thoughts on how to prepare pasta. It's as if she would have us all go about endlessly repeating the mantra, "WWGD?" If you consider that both Harrison and Adam got an ass-whooping for failing to do just that, it's hard to excuse.
  11. TomCorps

    S13.E10: Who Wants a Pilot?

    Not sure if you were responding to my previous comment, and I certainly see your point, but I would make a fine distinction. Kentucky is southern like Louisiana in the same way that Maine is northern like Connecticut. With its mountainous regions and proximity to the Midwest, I sense that Kentucky is closer in spirit to West Virginia than to Alabama or Mississippi. Of course, I'm not only no authority on all this, I'm a freakin' New Yorker, so what do I know? I guess what I was trying to say is that Jason could shed light on the food and culture of those border states that, while justifiably "southern" to most people, have a unique identity that isn't Paula Deen's South. Would most people see the difference? Probably not, but that's what I was thinking, anyway.
  12. TomCorps

    S13.E10: Who Wants a Pilot?

    Whether, as has been suggested, the entire Matthew trajectory was a set-up from day one to play on the audience's emotions, or it was all for real, and they actually cut the kid at the penultimate moment knowing he'd burst into tears, this was some mean shit. Matthew may be cocky and overeager, but neither of these is the cardinal sin in food entertainment. That would be boring, and few contestants I've ever seen on FNS rival Rusty for that. Suzanne and Nancy are the the poster-children for this season: inept and annoying. Suzanne especially makes me long for the days of Danushka. Cory was only marginally more interesting on camera. I'd love to eat at his restaurant, I bet I'd even like him as a person, but he's strictly Ken Dolls Recite Recipes in front of a camera. All of which leaves only Jason--who I like very much, and enjoy watching in spite of his being "Honey One Note." I think, out of the realm of this increasingly dumb show, he'd bring greater diversity to his on-air persona, and could teach us about a wide variety of ingredients and techniques. There's an ugly stereotype about the region he hails from: Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia... Think Deliverance. Jason has the ability to bring much-needed respect and appreciation for the wonderful people and culinary gems of this region. My favorite moment in this episode was when they showed us a photograph of his lush, green farm. In that one moment, I felt like I got a window into a whole world that Jason inhabits about which we know only the surface.
  13. TomCorps

    S13.E09: Game Day Special

    You: brilliant. Me: in need of an ambulance. There are millennials who don't feel this way?
  14. TomCorps

    S13.E09: Game Day Special

    Hey Blue, I was thinking specifically of the Ben's in East Hills (near Roslyn/Glen Cove, if you're not familiar) but there's also a franchise of the same Ben's in Carle Place on Old Country Road, and there are probably others too on Long Island. There used to be one in Bayside--may still be there, but I suspect like everything else that's good in NYC, it's been replaced by a Sephora or a CVS. FYI, I remember Ben's Best on Queens Boulevard! I was a Rego Park/Forest Hills brat, and I went there often. There used to be so many great deli-restaurants in Queens and Brooklyn (my favorite was Grabstein's on Rockaway Parkway in Canarsie) and for the most part, they're all gone now. It's a shame, there's a whole generation of kids growing up in this city now who think a deli is just a place to buy cold cuts. They wouldn't know a kugel or a plate of kasha varnishkes if it hit them over the head. My apologies for the off-topic chatter and all the loco moco local references to boot.
  15. TomCorps

    S13.E09: Game Day Special

    So Amy gets sent home for blubbering in front of the camera exactly like she did five weeks ago....and four weeks ago, and three weeks ago, and... What did they expect? She has a couple of halfway decent camera presentations and she's going to turn into Ina Garten? She was way past her shelf life. I'm sorry they led her on for so long. I absolutely disagree with the notion that potatoes and hot dogs was "the most difficult paring." Yes, cooking the potatoes in limited time is a challenge, but as for the pairing: every Jewish deli-restaurant from Ben's to Katz on 2nd Avenue makes a mashed potato-stuffed roll (like a knish) with a hot dog. While I'm sure there are no gourmet Jewish delis in the far reaches of Louisiana, Bobby certainly should have known better. Any five-year-old will tell you that hot dogs and potatoes (french fries, tater tots, etc.) are a natural taste combination. Sorry to go after Flay again, but I'm also going to nab him for the assertion that Matthew should have used blue cheese instead of mozzarella in his buffalo pizza pocket. Had he done that, what exactly would have made it pizza at all? I can hear Bobby: "I like this, but it's just dough stuffed with buffalo chicken. Nothing about it reminds me of pizza." Crumbling some blue cheese in addition to the mozzarella, maybe; instead of...no. Let's don't get into Giada's obnoxious pronunciation of "mozzarella" (that "fragile" cheese). If Matthew hadn't used buffalo sauce, had used tomato sauce instead...here we go again: "This is just a chicken parmesan pocket, it has nothing to do with buffalo wings." They made up the stupid challenge, and then critiqued the cook for fulfilling it. I dunno, maybe he used too much buffalo sauce. Anyway, I do thank Giada for once again for bringing the girls to the show. Always a pleasure to see them. And we're seeing more of them this season than if this were Cinemax After Dark. Jason's chili/deviled eggs looked good to me! I'm impressed that he got the flavor of full-on chili into the beans without meat. Rusty's corn-dog was worth it just for the look of obvious repulsion on Giada's face at having to bite into it. Someone needs to loop that expression and her failed attempt to bite into it as an animated gif. Dank meme waiting to happen. Yes, we all hate to say it, but Matthew was excellent this week. He didn't try to usurp the group presentation (I was sure he would) and in fact, he came off as a team player--which, as we all know, he's not. In fairness, if I'd never seen Matthew before and had tuned into FNS for the first time tonight, I'd have said he was a charming, personable young chef and would win this competition by a mile. He absolutely did. Re-watch the episode (if you dare...it was pretty lousy overall): he called at least one of the guys "honey" (I think it was Matthew) at least once. I distinctly remember, because I thought it was kind of odd.
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