An interesting concept.  Another of Food Networks’ cooking competition shows.  I’ve gotta tell you, I watch more food network than anything else right now.  I don’t think this one is going to make it, and I think the problem is the host.

This is a pretty straight-ahead (pardon that pun, more on why in a moment) cooking competition.  4 chefs get a basket of secret ingredients, and must incorporate each ingredient into a dish … working against the clock.  There’s a panel of judges.  Chefs are judged on taste, presentation, and creativity, much like Iron Chef.  But this is single elimination.  At the end of each round, one chef is “Chopped” from the competition, hence the name.  The last chef standing wins a $10,000 prize.

OK … It could be fun.  But I’m 10 minutes into the very first episode I’ve watched, and thinking I might pick up the remote and start surfing again.   The reason is Ted Allen.

Ted, as you might recall, was the Food and Wine guru on “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy”.  (“Straight” pun … get it?)  Ted, I think, knows his food and wine.  I liked him on “Queer Eye”.  But Ted can’t read a teleprompter to safe his life.

He has another show on Food Network … Food Detectives … but it dealt with food myths and fallacies.  Another interesting concept … but Ted just can’t pull it off,IMHO.  His style of presentation on camera is stilted, staccato, you can tell he’s reading every word.

He wasn’t that way on “Queer Eye”.  He was able to do his thing interacting with the hapless straight guy, give him a recipe to impress his girlfriend or friends or whom ever … he’s pretty good when he’s just talking.  Reading a teleprompter?  I’ve seen high school kids more natural on camera.

Wow, I just watched him “Chop” the first contestant.  He had this faux stern look on his face.  No warmth to the poor girl who got cut in the first round.  It’s difficult for Ted to look stern.

I suppose Food Network is trying to find a way to capitalize on what’s left of the “Queer Eye” momentum by using Ted.  But as natural as most of the other hosts come across … Ted just isn’t.  He’s a TV personality, and not a bad one.  I like him as a judge on ‘Iron Chef”.  He’s not necessarily a TV host.

So, I’ll make it through this episode of “Chopped”.  I’d like to see it with someone other than Ted.  Sorry dude, but it’s just not working for me.  But you never got a chance to critique my show.  Maybe one day, you will.


Meanwhile, I got three comments on my first column for JaxDaily … which is more comments that I’ll usually get here in a month.  So if you’ve snuck over here from there … do me a favor and let me know what you think.  I’d also appreciate knowing that you came here from there.



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Filed under Television, Food Network, Cooking Show, Critique

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