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Bad Chefs: The worst of Top Chef


Lillybee
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Angelo from season 7 is another annoying chef Granted the guy could cook and knew a lot about different cuisines but thought that he was all that and a bag of chips.

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I like Angelo. It was Mr. Pea Purée that got on my nerves. 

Just watched the all-star season reunion show. They had a compilation of Mike Isabella burping and scratching himself. Gross.

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  • 4 months later...

Nothing, on any reality show ever, takes the Cake over season 2.  Frank was a raging lunatic.  Betty was a horrible harpy.  Cliff was a sad, easily manipulated coward.  Elia was a disingenuous follower.  And the prize of the season, Ilan, who was not only an a class asshole but thought he was God's gift because he cooked Spanish cuisine. 

What a terrible group of people.  All of them, just awful human beings.

Season 2 were the shows that led me to really believe that if you can't put others quirks and weird habits aside (as long as those habits don't cause you any physical harm, I'm looking at you Puck, front the Real World) you should never, ever, go on a reality show of any kind.  You will be sharing living space with strangers for weeks, or months.  Deal with the little things and don't let them bother you.

Sure, Marcel, was an idiot and socially awkward, but he was harmless.  The rapping was annoying but harmless.  The ego was annoying, but harmless.  Deal!  Or don't sign up for it.  The asshats actually let him win, because he beat all but one of them.

Edited by Destiny74
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  • 2 months later...

Nicholas from Season 11 still grates my nerves (his win). I don't think I will ever get past that one. He seemed like he was one temper tantrum away from a meltdown at any moment.

Eli and Mike from Las Vegas were the top of my hate pile too. I found them both gross, condescending, and demeaning toward women (especially Robin) to the point that I can't even watch that season. I own almost all the seasons on Amazon, but that one I can't handle. It's sad since I am friends with and a big fan of Kevin. 

Honorable mention would go to Josie for how she treated Kristen and that annoying way she wanted to be center of attention. Lisa from Season 4 and her death glare/pout also hits me wrong. Marcel was immature his first season, but age hasn't improved that demeanor. He's a professional victim in many ways. John Tesar annoyed me too, as I felt like many of his annoying moments were orchestrated to show him as annoying. Carla Pellegrino's screaming and screeching earned my side eye too.  

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Through the magic of Hulu and a boring day at work, I rewatched Season 1.  I had really forgotten what a completely loathesome woman Tiffani is/was.  It really was a shame that she had immunity at the Kids' challenge - because Tom was ready to kick her snobby ass out the door for her attitude alone.

And Stephen.....oh man, watching the Junior League challenge and his snobby lecture.  Dude, do you even realize WHO the Junior League is?  These are women who HIRE wonks like you to cook their dinners.  Their palates are probably as sophisticated as it gets and their wine cellars are better than anything you could ever hope for.  I did notice that by the time of the reunion, he'd had a chance to reflect on his interactions with the others and did like his apology to Candice, which seemed heartfelt.  So props Stephen.  As they say, we learn something new every day.

And Ken.  How did that psychopath get past the screeners?  Watching the Reunion, I have to ask - was he drunk? On drugs?  

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25 minutes ago, Carolina Girl said:

had really forgotten what a completely loathesome woman Tiffani is/was. 

I think Tifanni is one of those people who saw themselves on reality tv, noticed things about their behavior that they didn’t like and actively worked to change it. 

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57 minutes ago, biakbiak said:

I think Tifanni is one of those people who saw themselves on reality tv, noticed things about their behavior that they didn’t like and actively worked to change it. 

I agree.  But she was still an asshole at the reunion, unlike Stephen, who appeared to try to mend fences.   When Katie Joel (and aren't we glad SHE lost her hosting gig after season 1!) tried to give Dave the t-shirt, Tiffani jumped up and said it belonged to her and snatched it away.  Joel actually said "stop it and give it back - this is Dave's moment."  I'm going to rewatch All-Stars (anticipating another boring day) today and see the new improved Tiffani.  

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Nicholas from season 11 as the winner, even though he under seasoned everything still irritates me.   Mike Isabella and his rude, sexist remarks should have been shut down very quickly, and it was zero surprise when he was nailed for all of his harassment.         Stephen, the wine expert was a jerk.     

 

I couldn't believe the ones that tackled Marcel were allowed to go forward, and one of them win.     Tom C. was right, they should have sent them home and made Marcel the winner.      And the other two assistants deliberately sabotaging Marcel was disgusting, and the fact they thought it was so funny to do that was just part of the reason that I was totally disgusted with the show for a long time.     

The way Heather and Sarah were allowed to bully Beverly was appalling, especially since she was a survivor of an abusive relationship.       

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I started watching Top Chef during season 2, so I didn't see season 1 until after season 2 ended. Compared to the assholes in season 2, Tiffani never came off that bad to me. I mean, she wasn't great but nothing compared to Cliff, Betty, Frank, Ilan, Elia, and Sam. 

Season 2 was like watching the Stanford Prison Experiment play out on a reality tv competition. All those people really brought out the worst in each other when it came to Marcel. He was annoying but my God, nobody deserves to be treated the way he was. I wish Tom had gotten his way and was able to disqualify Cliff, Ilan, Elia, and Sam.

Edited by MerBearStare
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5 hours ago, Carolina Girl said:

Through the magic of Hulu and a boring day at work, I rewatched Season 1.  I had really forgotten what a completely loathesome woman Tiffani is/was.  It really was a shame that she had immunity at the Kids' challenge - because Tom was ready to kick her snobby ass out the door for her attitude alone.

And Stephen.....oh man, watching the Junior League challenge and his snobby lecture.  Dude, do you even realize WHO the Junior League is?  These are women who HIRE wonks like you to cook their dinners.  Their palates are probably as sophisticated as it gets and their wine cellars are better than anything you could ever hope for.  I did notice that by the time of the reunion, he'd had a chance to reflect on his interactions with the others and did like his apology to Candice, which seemed heartfelt.  So props Stephen.  As they say, we learn something new every day.

And Ken.  How did that psychopath get past the screeners?  Watching the Reunion, I have to ask - was he drunk? On drugs?  

The majority (few exceptions) of season 1's cast would not pass a psych test for most jobs. That was a crazy bunch who seemed to bring out the crazy in each other. 

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On 12/28/2018 at 9:56 AM, biakbiak said:

I think Tifanni is one of those people who saw themselves on reality tv, noticed things about their behavior that they didn’t like and actively worked to change it. 

Yeah, absolutely. She seems so great now! She's super successful, seems happy in her personal life, etc. I saw her "in conversation" with Gail last year (?) when Gail's book came out, and they had a great time together. 

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I've been shocked that some people were selected, and kept when they seemed dangerous, not just eccentric.     I don't remember the name, but some from the first and second seasons were scary.      The outright sabotage of Marcel was just as bad as the assault on him, and had zero repercussions apparently.       The one woman in the Seattle season (I think it was then) who had an accent, was scary, and seemed unbalanced.     

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56 minutes ago, CrazyInAlabama said:

The outright sabotage of Marcel was just as bad as the assault on him, and had zero repercussions apparently.     

What sabatoge? At the finale that was all him and Sam pulled him together and created a good dish for him.

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36 minutes ago, CrazyInAlabama said:

The two chefs who assisted Marcel 'accidentally' left some of the vital ingredients behind in the fridge where they prepped, and were laughing about it being an accident, like it was a big joke.  It was deliberate sabotage because they didn't like him.  

Marcel was the last person in the walk-in pulling the ingredients and did not notice the hamachi  even though he knew that not everything had been packed up. No one including Marcel implied it was sabatoge.

Neither Sam or Mike laughed when they found out that the fish was left behind and Sam immediately got Marcel focused and helped him reimagine the dish that turned out to be his most successful course and had more than one jusge stating that it didn’t need the hamachi.

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2 hours ago, CrazyInAlabama said:

   The one woman in the Seattle season (I think it was then) who had an accent, was scary, and seemed unbalanced.     

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That was Carla Pellegrino. That woman was unhinged. The only thing entertaining about her was the look of horror she would earn from the other chefs. She's got a nice pedigree, but she's a piece of work. She was (think they are divorced) Frank Pellegrino, Jr. of Raos. 

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That's who it was!   Thanks.             She was so emotional, and over the top it scared me.      Apparently she and Frank Jr. divorced around 2012.     

She's now the chef at the hotel in Yosemite.        

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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  • 2 weeks later...

On 1/3/2019 at 11:15 AM, Special K said:

Speaking of "how did they get selected," few match the guy who went psycho on Top Chef: Just Desserts.  Remember "the red hots were for my MOMMMEEEEEE!"

I watch way too much reality television, so I've seen a lot of uncomfortable moments, but that one was even too much for me.  That scene was frightening.

Claudette from the Colorado season is my personal worst chef.  That season featured my favorite chef (Fatima :( ) and my least favorite (Claudette).

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  • 3 weeks later...

Marcel seems to have matured based on his last gig on Top Chef, but he used to be a true piece of work.

Back in 2011, I was in college and majoring in media arts before I changed my major to poli sci. So my aunt, who produces and hosts some reality shows, was in town from LA because they were filming some show called "Marcel's Quantum Kitchen" or something (I never ended up following up with the air date to watch it); it was being filmed at a museum here in metro Detroit, so my aunt took me and let me sit behind the scenes with the production crew.

We got there and I was hanging out with my aunt and everyone else (Marcel was on his way, I believe) and one of the other producers or whatever came into the room, extremely stressed out, saying they were almost ready to cancel the whole thing because Marcel was so difficult to work with and was a prima donna. They HATED him. They were almost ready to stop production and apparently he had threatened to quit, too. He had a high list of demands and was being beyond rude to everyone. No one liked him. I couldn't believe his temperament when he finally arrived. He was so disrespectful. Even when actual filming started, and there was a large group of people filming with him (college students I think?) who didn't know him at all, he was STILL being a jerk and getting frustrated with anything and anyone. 

I did get to try some of the leftover food though. I was cautious so I only tried some chocolatey dessert he had made. It was good. There was a duck dish sitting out, but it was medium rare-ish and had been sitting for hours by then, so I passed on it. It was probably delicious, but oh well.

 

Obviously the chefs on his season were immature and, quite frankly, bullies with the way they treated him. However, I imagine filming with him week after week was nothing short of extreme frustration. 

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With those two scenarios, there are different reasons for Marcel's...umm....jerkery. 

On TC, he was straight up immature. Post TC, his big heaf had trouble getting through doorways. He has mellowed since those Quantum Kitchen days. I forget the vehicle in which I last saw him, but I got the impression that he'd finally grown up.

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2 hours ago, RealityWatcher said:

Marcel seems to have matured based on his last gig on Top Chef, but he used to be a true piece of work.

Has he been on since All Stars because he was an awful asshat during that as well.

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Marcel's season was number 2 - so I don't remember specifics. Like a lot of people don't like Betty from that season, and I don't remember her being that bad. What I remember was Marcel getting on everyone's nerves.  SAM was the one most annoyed and seemed to try and rally the troops, per se, to all be annoyed at his level.  Sam was the one stirring the pot, etc.  Now, I don't advocate the head shaving (what a bunch of idiots), but I remember Sam specifically saying he didn't want to be "that guy."  Well, he was.  To this day, I change the channel if he's ever on a show.

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  • 11 months later...
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Man bun bro who either cooked on or served something on a dirty rock. Don't remember his name, don't want to. 

Philip Lee....and he was a pompous ass, but not one of the worst chefs ever. That goes to Josie

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Philip Lee was a spoiled, entitled man-baby, and I couldn't stand him.  Didn't like Lisa, or the witches coven from the Texas season picking on Beverly.     Season's two group of bullies were horrible too.   However, I think my all time dislike is Mike Isabella.   

Josie from season 2 was scary.    Then the woman on a later season that was also very up and down, Carla Pellegrino.    

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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However, I think my all time dislike is Mike Isabella. 

He's certainly in my top 5 but he wasn't a terrible chef. He was obnoxious and arrogant and sexist on the show, and his later actions show he was those things in real life too.

I'll stick with Josie-top notch dislike and bottom notch chef...she took Kristen Kish out all by her lonesome!

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The down right horrid people from season two, Josie who was a complete nutter (I swear she was either high or drunk or both in the episode where she got Kristen eliminated), the Witches from the Texas season. 

With the exception of Josie who was just plain mad as a hatter these people went beyond douche. They were outright vindictive and loathsome.

They should get all these people together for a Hunger Games style season. Throw in Mike Isabella too for good measure.

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On 3/24/2020 at 11:14 AM, Mellowyellow said:

The down right horrid people from season two, Josie who was a complete nutter (I swear she was either high or drunk or both in the episode where she got Kristen eliminated), the Witches from the Texas season. 

With the exception of Josie who was just plain mad as a hatter these people went beyond douche. They were outright vindictive and loathsome.

They should get all these people together for a Hunger Games style season. Throw in Mike Isabella too for good measure.

Definitely. It would be hella fun to watch them epically battle to see who'd be the last one standing. 

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They should get all these people together for a Hunger Games style season. Throw in Mike Isabella too for good measure.

You would need some people to stir up the pot like Spike, Stefan and/or Katsuji...and then a couple of stone cold great chefs to really bring out the worst in those people.

Fun as this is to discuss, we don't know if they are really that nasty or if they were just edited that way. I've met Sarah G from Texas season a couple of times and she was very nice....including at Monteverde, her excellent restaurant, so who knows.

On the other hand there is Isabella!

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On 3/20/2020 at 9:20 AM, SailorGirl said:

Man bun bro who either cooked on or served something on a dirty rock. Don't remember his name, don't want to. 

 

According to Padma, it was snot. (Actually I think it was oysters.) I remember I wrote a haiku about her comment, either in this forum or TWOP.

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1 hour ago, Lamb18 said:

According to Padma, it was snot. (Actually I think it was oysters.) I remember I wrote a haiku about her comment, either in this forum or TWOP.

It was oysters. His cockiness annoyed me to no end. He was all the time showing up on the Food Network. Confidence is admirable. His was just plain condescending, chauvinistic, ego. 

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I remember one chef from the Chicago season whose work area was always so disgustingly filthy that it grossed Tom out. I also remember that guy tasting and then dunking that spoon back into the food. It was curly-haired guy with an accent...

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3 hours ago, BlackberryJam said:

I remember one chef from the Chicago season whose work area was always so disgustingly filthy that it grossed Tom out. I also remember that guy tasting and then dunking that spoon back into the food. It was curly-haired guy with an accent...

He was from New Zealand. I think his name was Mark.

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  • 1 month later...
(edited)

Least favorite winner was Nicholas. I found his attitude toward Carlos and Mexican  food repugnant. He never spoke like that of Shirley doing Chinese. He was also hypocritical because he always cooked French. I also hated his temperament. I hated that He won over Nina. I almost quit Top Chef I was so angry.

Edited by Miss chi chi
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  • 2 months later...
On 12/4/2014 at 1:45 PM, ChelseaNH said:

Except that Dave didn't have much to complain about, as far as that episode went.  He was out running the front of the house, doing his own thing, so it's not like he was being treated like a lackey.

I may be wrong, but the only later episode of S1 where one of the cheftestants was running the front of the house was the one where Stephen ended up (deservedly) getting the boot for being out trying to "sell his wine" instead of helping out in the kitchen where they were under water ... Top 5 I think? 

We're currently heading into the reunion and then the finale for S1, a totally new-to-me season (as I think I've mentioned a few posts above this, we didn't start watching TC at all until S7, and not full-time with hubby until S10). 

So I now have douchebaggy Stephen as my TC Cheftestant Public Enemy No. 1 with Tiffani close behind (though reading this thread allows me to be interested in seeing Tiffani's apparently redemptive return ... and I'm SHOCKED to see that Stephen comes back again as well). 

I like Dave a lot, and while neither of us remember him at all from our watching experience, I'd be surprised for this to be a one-and-done for him. He's likable and his food sounds appealing to me. 

I'm sure down the road (about 150 episodes down the road) I'll have a more fully-formed list of the cheftestants I hated the most. I'll keep notes. 

 

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1 hour ago, PamelaMaeSnap said:

I may be wrong, but the only later episode of S1 where one of the cheftestants was running the front of the house was the one where Stephen ended up (deservedly) getting the boot for being out trying to "sell his wine" instead of helping out in the kitchen where they were under water ... Top 5 I think? 

We're currently heading into the reunion and then the finale for S1, a totally new-to-me season (as I think I've mentioned a few posts above this, we didn't start watching TC at all until S7, and not full-time with hubby until S10). 

So I now have douchebaggy Stephen as my TC Cheftestant Public Enemy No. 1 with Tiffani close behind (though reading this thread allows me to be interested in seeing Tiffani's apparently redemptive return ... and I'm SHOCKED to see that Stephen comes back again as well). 

I like Dave a lot, and while neither of us remember him at all from our watching experience, I'd be surprised for this to be a one-and-done for him. He's likable and his food sounds appealing to me. 

I'm sure down the road (about 150 episodes down the road) I'll have a more fully-formed list of the cheftestants I hated the most. I'll keep notes. 

 

There are plenty of douchebags in S2. Prepare yourself. 

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(edited)
On 7/6/2020 at 11:04 AM, PamelaMaeSnap said:
On 12/4/2014 at 10:45 AM, ChelseaNH said:

 

I may be wrong, but the only later episode of S1 where one of the cheftestants was running the front of the house was the one where Stephen ended up (deservedly) getting the boot for being out trying to "sell his wine" instead of helping out in the kitchen where they were under water ... Top 5 I think? 

That was top 6 and it was Restaurant Wars, Dave was the front of the house for the other restaurant and won the challenge. Stephen didn’t get the boot Miguel did. Stephen got the boot for the next episode which was a wedding where Stephen was in the kitchen but also not helping out much.

Edited by biakbiak
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On 7/7/2020 at 4:30 PM, biakbiak said:

That was top 6 and it was Restaurant Wars, Dave was the front of the house for the other restaurant and won the challenge. Stephen didn’t get the boot Miguel did. Stephen got the boot for the next episode which was a wedding where Stephen was in the kitchen but also not helping out much.

Thank you!!!! Appreciate the clarification! I have significant short-term memory issues (medical) so while the upside is I can rewatch shows I’ve seen and enjoy them all over again, the downside is even after I watch them I misremember things. I can picture things very clearly but can’t put them in the right chronological place! It’s like a deck of cards all over the floor. 

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