Sunday, July 14, 2013

Chad May Be Out as the Next Food Network Star

This week on the Food Network's Next Food Network Star, the competent but continually uninspiring work of Chad Rosenthal finally caught up with him, and Chad was eliminated - he will not be** the Next Food Network Star. Chad's inability to really talk engagingly about any food - Bobby Flay's salmon masterpiece or Chad's very own barbecue poutine - led Alton, Bobby, and Giada to conclude Chad was never going to progress - he was never going to be the Next Food Network Star. For a man who has lived barbecue professionally for years - and who is seen saying in the trailers that he can "talk about food like nobody else" - Chad has surprisingly little to say.

Russel barely held on this week - and he will not be the Next Food Network Star either. However, it does appear that he is a slightly better - or at least more interesting and innovative - chef, and there is more potential for him to grow into a marketable personality. Barbecue is pretty generic and well served on the Food Network - cooking with the "Seven Culinary Sins" is something new. Candied bacon and horseradish ice cream are certainly worth taking a look at - though they may belong on Anthony Bourdain's show, as opposed to the Food Network.

Demaris continues to disappoint - though the judges have some sort of misplaced affection for her southern "charm." Though I would certainly not be tuning in to a Food Network Show to learn about green bean casserole - or really anything "southern" that Demaris offers. And I would hope that Demaris' piss-poor whiny attitude would count as a strike against her. That woman complains about every single challenge - it's never exciting for her, only a burden. That is just rather classless, and certainly not "Star" quality.

Rodney continues to be - in the words of Bobby Flay - "a disaster." While his food seems to always be tasty, how hard is it to screw up a mixed berry pie. The thing that bothers me is his absolutely sloppy presentation. His culinary skills and his finished products are always a mess, and I would be turned off as a judge just watching him work. On top of that, his presentations are always annoying and rather low class, and his personal appearance reminds me of the unkempt schlubbiness that was the trademark of the Pop-A-Waffle guys on the Great Food Truck Race. In my world, style counts ... and Rodney has very little.

Finally, both Stacy and Nikki were winners tonight, though it's obvious that Nikki was the top presenter. Bobby overpraised Stacy because of her story, overlooking the fact that she said very little about the actual food. And, the Meat-on-the-Side concept is a heck of a lot more interesting than a Vintage-Modern Kitchen. Though either of these ladies will be competent. The key word being competent - for there are no true stars among this incredibly weak field of food finalists.

** Chad's chance at redemption came in a competition with Lovely. And while Chad wasn't stellar, he - like all other redemption candidates - made a much more interesting dish than Lovely who simply "made a salad." That is not star quality, nor were any of her other dishes. However, Robert Irvine is going to make us wait until next week to see he comes back.  It better be Chad.

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