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S17.E03: Tower of Terror

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The chefs must complete a four-tiered shellfish tower with "fast hands." The first team to finish is rewarded with a glamorous day in Malibu, while the losing team must prep for a massive fish delivery. During the dinner service, Chef Ramsay sends multiple entrees back to the kitchen and temporarily kicks out one of the All-Stars. In the end, one team manages to improve its performance, while the other fails to impress.

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So after two seasons in which the women basically kicked ass, we're back to form with a women's team who can't cooperate to save their lives.  Michelle wins them a thirty-second headstart in the challenge, and they still manage to blow it.  Then, Ashley, Robyn, and Manda sink their service.

However, Ramsay gets the biggest epic fail of the night.  If he truly wants an all-star season, why not actually keep the strong performers in addition to the drama-starters?  Why not get rid of the weaker contestants?  Of the four available tonight, there's no question it should've been Robyn or Manda out the door.  I didn't think for a moment that Ashley was going to win this season, but I damn sure thought she at least should've gotten farther than that.  To eliminate her because she . . . just checked her watch one time?  What?  I just . . . wow.

Men seem strong, but there definitely seems to be at least one weak point among them, and it's definitely Josh.  He's been slow two services in a row, and that might catch up with him eventually.

If this is about to be the season when the men dominate while the women keep on going home, I'll pass.

Boring episode.

Edited by Star Aristille
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My recording got screwed up due to Friday night high school football being shown, and running long. I saw the cup stacking thing, and the guys winning the seafood tower challenge... but missed the entire dinner service. I picked it back up, “live” as the women were choosing who to nominate. Sounds like I didn’t miss much.

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You missed the usual Barbie-bashing, the gross food lunch that Christina arrived at after and smelled their breath to make sure they'd eaten (all she'd've smelled on my breath was vomit) which Elise tried to slither out of , and lots of yelling.

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That little kid Matthew was pretty awesome.  I wonder what originally motivated him to stack Solo cups?  He ought to go to Manhattan and play Three Card Monte.

Robyn got a lot of screen time running her mouth.  She reminds me of Steven Van Zant as Silvio on The Sopranos.

Has anyone been to Mastro's Ocean Club (the boys' reward) in Malibu?  Other than costing an arm and a leg, is it any good?

During dinner service, did I hear Gordon calling out lobster Wellington?

I don't have any particular favorite at this point, but the episode did manage to hold my interest.

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What the heck was with the closeup of the mouth as the show was going to commercial after the "breath smell" sgement..was like a cheap"jump scare" in a horror movie lol

Gordon to the Blue team at the end:"What are you all waiting for,hot chocolate??" XD him and i were wondering why they were still sitting there

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45 minutes ago, spiderpig said:

Has anyone been to Mastro's Ocean Club (the boys' reward) in Malibu?  Other than costing an arm and a leg, is it any good?

I have been and the food, especially the butter cake is amazing. I just wouldn’t suggest going at night as it can be dark inside and they give a flash light to look at your menu, then take it away. Great views during the day. 

Anyway, I am really over all-stars on reality shows other than top chef. These people were not interesting the first time around. Anyone else bothered by Chef Ramsey having his hands all over all the pieces of meat, even the ones he actually sends to the table? All I can think of is germs and cross-contamination if someone has an allergy. 

Watching HK makes me appreciate the level of talent on Top Chef. I never understand why, if you know you are going to be on the show, you don’t master making risotto, beef Wellington, etc. They always have the same staples in the menu. It’s like going to an Italian restaurant and not realizing the pasta has to be made from scratch. Anyone know what the garnish station actually does? It seems they are always behind there.

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It's apparent Robyn will be going no where.  She's not a good cook and only brings drama and the occasional comedic relief.   Ashley should not have gone home when Robyn is still there.  When they showed in the beginning her stupid stunt it was clear she would be hear for a while.  Gordon you want to have All Stars then have All Stars not some drama filled people on the show.  This is what is so frustrating.

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While watching how horrendously inefficient the women's team is, all I could think of was, "Well, I guess we have a female winner this season."  This show is so predictable.

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10 minutes ago, AZChristian said:

While watching how horrendously inefficient the women's team is, all I could think of was, "Well, I guess we have a female winner this season."  This show is so predictable.

I was thinking the same thing. And if they keep picking on Barbie, I’m going to be rooting for her going up against Milly.

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I am so sick of listening to Robyn.  I want her sent home.  She grates on my nerves.  On the men's side they can send home Jared.  I have always hated how he refers to the women.  

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I'm really surprised that they don't pick logically. This isn't Survivor or Big Brother where the contestants send the nominees home. I mean, I get that sometimes someone must be sitting there wondering "who shouldn't I nominate after dinner tonight? All but X and me sucked." but mostly they are all "we hate Y. Let's put them up" instead of the real screw ups.

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4 hours ago, AZChristian said:

While watching how horrendously inefficient the women's team is, all I could think of was, "Well, I guess we have a female winner this season."  This show is so predictable.

Well, to be fair, men don't usually win in seasons where the female team does better either. Outside of the first few seasons (or a situation like S12, where the clearly intended winner takes herself out), men simply don't win this show, period.

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Gordon's freak out over Ashley looking at her watch was so overdone. It was obvious that she was going to be sent home, no matter how bad anyone else screwed up. Clearly she's gone because she's relatively low-drama, and this season, maybe more than any other, is going to be about the drama. Especially on the women's side, with Elise, Robin, Barbie. Eliminations this year will have virtually nothing to do with actual performance in the kitchen. They will be about all the little subplots and in-fighting.

The week before, Gordon said that the men's dinner service was the best in the history of Hell's Kitchen, but he still sent one of the men home in order not to eliminate Elise, who deserved it.

Edited by bluepiano
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That whole bit with Ashley and her watch seemed odd.  They showed her walking through the kitchen staring at it like she was having trouble telling time or something.  Adults who wear watches just glance at them, the time registers in a split second and they go on.  Gordon wouldn't even notice someone doing that in a "normal" fashion.  Ashley's behavior and then Gordon making a major issue of it seemed curious to me.

So far I don't mind most of the men although Van is annoying and Jared is still a pig.  Milly is doing well and getting positive feedback from Gordon.  I hope that doesn't signal catastrophe during a future episode because I'd like to see him win this.  The women are mostly awful although Michelle does seem to have matured since her season.  The big woman (can't think of her name) must have been on a season before I started watching HK because I don't recall her at all.  She seems like one of the calmer ones so far but I don't know how she acted in the past.

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12 hours ago, spiderpig said:

That little kid Matthew was pretty awesome.  I wonder what originally motivated him to stack Solo cups?  He ought to go to Manhattan and play Three Card Monte.

Robyn got a lot of screen time running her mouth.  She reminds me of Steven Van Zant as Silvio on The Sopranos.

Has anyone been to Mastro's Ocean Club (the boys' reward) in Malibu?  Other than costing an arm and a leg, is it any good?

During dinner service, did I hear Gordon calling out lobster Wellington?

I don't have any particular favorite at this point, but the episode did manage to hold my interest.

 

Amazing Race once had a cup stacking challenge. At that time it seemed much more difficult than the HK version.

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51 minutes ago, preeya said:

Amazing Race once had a cup stacking challenge. At that time it seemed much more difficult than the HK version.

The cup stacking thing is a real "sport" .  I've seen that before on several other shows.

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23 minutes ago, Rammchick said:

Amazing Race once had a cup stacking challenge. At that time it seemed much more difficult than the HK version.

That's because in AR, they had to do it in under a specific time (I think I want to say .... 7 seconds???). Here, they could take their time. It also seemed like more cups than in AR.

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15 hours ago, spiderpig said:

That little kid Matthew was pretty awesome.  I wonder what originally motivated him to stack Solo cups?  He ought to go to Manhattan and play Three Card Monte.

Robyn got a lot of screen time running her mouth.  She reminds me of Steven Van Zant as Silvio on The Sopranos.

Has anyone been to Mastro's Ocean Club (the boys' reward) in Malibu?  Other than costing an arm and a leg, is it any good?

During dinner service, did I hear Gordon calling out lobster Wellington?

I don't have any particular favorite at this point, but the episode did manage to hold my interest.

Cup stacking is a thing. We have it in our school's gym class and there's a cup stacking team.

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4 minutes ago, Aileen said:

Cup stacking is a thing. We have it in our school's gym class and there's a cup stacking team.

I'm officially an old fart.  We used to play dodgeball.

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15 hours ago, TDT said:

What the heck was with the closeup of the mouth as the show was going to commercial after the "breath smell" sgement..was like a cheap"jump scare" in a horror movie lol

And the dangling thing at the back of that throat was all spotted and diseased-looking!

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2 hours ago, Meowwww said:

And the dangling thing at the back of that throat was all spotted and diseased-looking!

That was the HK logo. I was laughing because that has to be the weirdest graphic yet that they've thrown at us.

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3 hours ago, Rammchick said:

The dangling thing is called the uvula.  It looked like strep throat.

To quote Barney Fife, “It’s a uvula! I’ve got a uvula, you’ve got a uvula, all God’s children got a uvula!”

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14 hours ago, AZChristian said:

While watching how horrendously inefficient the women's team is, all I could think of was, "Well, I guess we have a female winner this season."  This show is so predictable.

Not necessarily.  Last season, the men were so terrible, and still none of them won.  Meanwhile, the women started out strong and stayed that way (for the most part), and one of them won.  So it's not always that predictable.

8 hours ago, mlp said:

The big woman (can't think of her name) must have been on a season before I started watching HK because I don't recall her at all.  She seems like one of the calmer ones so far but I don't know how she acted in the past.

That would be Jennifer from season nine.  She came in fifth.

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19 hours ago, MakingBacon said:

Watching HK makes me appreciate the level of talent on Top Chef. I never understand why, if you know you are going to be on the show, you don’t master making risotto, beef Wellington, etc. They always have the same staples in the menu. It’s like going to an Italian restaurant and not realizing the pasta has to be made from scratch. Anyone know what the garnish station actually does? It seems they are always behind there.

I agree about risotto, but the wellington is a different story.  The wellingtons are made ahead of time and refrigerated.  The person who cooks them can only put them in the oven at the proper temperature for the right amount of time, no skill involved.  There's no way to check to see if it's done until it's cut open.  you can tell by looking if the pastry is cooked, but not the steak inside.  You could master it at home by trial and error, but the size of the steak, the consistency of the pastry, and the exact oven temp, can mess you up.   Ramsey also calls them "RAW" if slightly undercooked, and "BURNT" if slightly over. 

The garnish station does the side dishes, like mashed potatoes and veggies, plus actual garnish like parsley or a cherry tomato, sauce/gravy. 

I don't get what the big deal is about looking at a watch.  If I'm cooking something that needs a certain amount of time, what's wrong with using my watch to time it? The second time, she seemed to be using her fingers to count, I assume it was also related to timing.  

The tower challenge, the guy who said that preparing oysters was like "making love to a beautiful woman,"  creeped me out, as he was using a KNIFE to pry open shellfish.  Yeah, that's not how you do sex, dude.  

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1 hour ago, backformore said:

The tower challenge, the guy who said that preparing oysters was like "making love to a beautiful woman,"  creeped me out, as he was using a KNIFE to pry open shellfish.  Yeah, that's not how you do sex, dude.  

Eww. Do you remember how the original Spartacus was censored for decades because of the exchange between Laurence Olivier and Tony Curtis about preferences for oysters or snails?  Over the years they lost the soundtrack but had retained the footage.  Olivier had died by then, so Anthony Hopkins dubbed in Crassus's dialogue.  Tony Curtis was still alive and did his own looping.

You're welcome. (bows)

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Milly and Benjamin are looking like serious contenders. Robyn should have been eliminated, but on a show like Hell's Kitchen it is not surprising that Ashley was eliminated.

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20 hours ago, preeya said:

During dinner service, did I hear Gordon calling out lobster Wellington?

Yes. And last week it was duck Wellington. Usually it's beef or lamb Wellie, but apparently anything can be a Wellington. During MasterChef, the contestants actually had to make it (that is, starting with dough and putting all the stuff in, as well as cooking it).

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2 hours ago, xcrayon2215x said:

Milly and Benjamin are looking like serious contenders. Robyn should have been eliminated, but on a show like Hell's Kitchen it is not surprising that Ashley was eliminated.

I agree, I like Milly and think he’d be an excellent choice to work for Ramsay.

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1 hour ago, illdoc said:

Yes. And last week it was duck Wellington. Usually it's beef or lamb Wellie, but apparently anything can be a Wellington. During MasterChef, the contestants actually had to make it (that is, starting with dough and putting all the stuff in, as well as cooking it).

I could look it up, but you guys are more fun.  Do you precook the lobster, and if not how do you test for doneness and not overcook it?

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32 minutes ago, Drogo said:

"I am literally watching meat die."

Barbie, you are literally a week late to watch that lamb die. 

Hi Drogo!  See "Pet Peeves" thread about the insane overuse of the word "literally".

It literally drives me crazy.  On the news channels you literally hear it every 5 seconds.

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I can't believe I'm watching this... swore off HK a few seasons ago, but still caught one here and there. Still, there are contestants here that I don't know. Nor do I care to do same.

But I have been holding my tongue for a few seasons about the always-included, gross malt of a lunch from Chef Ramsay: There is no way in hell I would eat that, drink that, or otherwise even sniff it. I was also similarly grossed out by Christina's "Okay, everyone, let me smell your breath."

Ugh.

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I'm surprised at Christina's breath smell request as well, kinda gross.  Just tell Elise to take another spoonful regardless - she's going to be whiny either way you choose.

Tower looked good, made me hungry!!!

I get the idea the prod staff encourages the drama arguments tween Elise and Robyn - "cmon, ramp it up guys, it'll kill in the ratings". "Barbee, you do a cold stare of death a lot, ok?"

Edited by Colorado David
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On 10/14/2017 at 1:48 AM, mertensia said:

You missed the usual Barbie-bashing, the gross food lunch that Christina arrived at after and smelled their breath to make sure they'd eaten (all she'd've smelled on my breath was vomit) which Elise tried to slither out of , and lots of yelling.

Well, on the bright side, at least we learned the answer to "what happens if one of the people just refuses the nasty food challenge?" and "Do they really have to eat all of it?" questions of prior years...

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On 10/14/2017 at 4:43 PM, spiderpig said:

I'm officially an old fart.  We used to play dodgeball.

Killer dodgeball. Where people get sent to the nurse's office.

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