Whitney Pastorek
May 07, 2008 AT 11:34 PM EDT

Hell's Kitchen

TV Show
Current Status

Psst, Fox: I’m onto you. Yeah, you think you’re all crafty, but after four seasons of cook-risotto-fail-rinse-repeat, it’s gonna take a little more than some drivel about Shayna needing to get home to her baby for me to believe tonight’s episode wasn’t tampered with in order to retain the services of Matt, whose whining, bulky mass and emetic culinary skills are the kinds of things that on paper might make for ”better” ”television” but really just make ”me” ”uncomfortable.”

Yes, tonight’s continuation of Hell’s Kitchen was a serious disappointment, my little fish sticks, as the producers tipped their hand to confirm our darkest suspicions: This show is less about cooking now than it has ever been. After last week’s non-elimination (thanks to poor Vanessa and her sautéed hand), the teams went back to the dorms to lounge around and chain-smoke and bitch at each other. Christina went on another tirade about how when you strike her down, she will become more powerful than you could possibly imagine, blah blah blah. ”I’m the complete package,” she said, giving as evidence the fact that she looks ”great in a pair of heels,” followed by her ability to read books, and also cook. If this was called Slutty Librarian Kitchen, I suppose she’d be onto something. Since it’s not, this rant made very little sense.

And then there’s Matt. Whichever one of you commenters called him Sam the Eagle last week was pretty damn spot-on, but I think you just insulted Sam the Eagle. Matt, who thinks Bobby and Ben are incompetent (though they’re obviously running the team), was mad as hell, and his eyebrows just were not going to take it anymore. But it’s hard to feel sorry for the guy when he’s such a delusional human being, and, as usual, I found myself not enjoying his mental illness so much as keeping a close eye on all his veins and hoping God didn’t have any further pulmonary embolisms scheduled for today.

The challenge and dinner service were basically all one massive contrived entity tonight: plan and execute a sweet sixteen party for a central casting spoiled girl and her central casting dragon lady of a mother, whose face-lift unquestionably cost more than my car. To begin, the cheflings met Ramsay at the Grove, here in L.A., whose farmers’ market has been shockingly absent from the current season of American Idol. They were given $100 and 25 minutes to put together one appetizer and two entrees for the menu. While the girls focused on ”glamour,” the men focused on ignoring Matt, whose vomit-inducing suggestion for the afternoon was ”sushi pizza on a tortilla.” Really? Really. The producers didn’t feed you that idea, Matt? Seriously? You thought of ”sushi pizza on a tortilla” yourself? Really. Really. I suppose it’s possible, but I mean…sushi pizza on a tortilla. Just ponder that for a second. Then go rinse your mouth out, and come back. I’ll wait.

We all okay? Feeling refreshed? Good, because you’ll need that hint of mint to survive Matt’s next contribution to this episode: Out of all the contestants, he alone has recently attended a 16-year-old girl’s birthday party. I want no part of any conjecture related to that statement, I just want it entered in the log, and then I would like to move on.

NEXT: A feigned showmance

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