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Thursday, October 07, 2010

"Top Chef: Just Desserts": Are They All Coming Unwound?

When people apply/audition to be part of a reality show, they fill out lots of paperwork so that the producers can make sure they’re getting stable people.

Apparently the producers of “Top Chef: Just Desserts” lost all of the paperwork for its contestants because this is the most messed up group of people I have ever seen on a reality show…

WARNING: If you have not seen last night’s episode of “Top Chef: Just Desserts” stop reading now.

You may remember that in my review of the premiere, I said that Seth was “the slightly strange one with the mega talent.” I thought that his quirks could actually become entertaining. I couldn’t have been more wrong, because his quirks made the show painful to watch. First there was his breakdown when he couldn’t finish a dish that he was making in honor of his mother. Then there was his breakdown when he couldn’t make the cocktail he wanted for the cocktail challenge.

But none of that came anywhere close to the breakdown he had last night…

Host Gail Simmons announced that the Quickfire Challenge would be an ice cream challenge, as was obvious by the numerous containers of Breyer’s ice cream. Seth wanted to know if they were making their own ice cream and when Gail told him no, he responded with an almost creepy, “weak sauce,” which I took as a bit of a slam toward the sponsor, Breyer’s. Then he started acting very strangely, scaring his competitors.

Then, in a rare move, we saw the cheftestants in the Stew Room getting an explanation of the challenge from a producer (I’ve always wondered how that works.). Seth continued his odd behavior complaining his paper cups had been thrown away (Don’t worry. I didn’t understand it either.). After calling the producer a liar and saying a few more bizarre things, Seth disappeared. Cut to the other cheftestants discussing his behavior and then hearing sirens in the background. Apparently Seth had a major anxiety attack and an ambulance was called.

In his confessional segment, Seth very calmly said the producers had decided he was unable to continue competing. In all honesty, the show had no choice. Seth was becoming alarmingly unbalanced. I’m actually surprised something like this has never happened before.

But if you think that getting rid of Seth restored the sanity to the show, you are sorely mistaken. To replace him, the show brought back Heather C., who nearly had a breakdown before she was eliminated last week. And she came close to having another one as she seemed headed toward another elimination this week.

But instead, Malika, who toyed with the idea of quitting last week, stepped forward and asked to be eliminated, after it seemed like she was finally at peace with the show.


Not to mention Heather H., who said Morgan wasn’t a team player, because he didn’t help her with the showpiece—which she volunteered to do on her own.

What in the world?

I still think that “Just Desserts” is a great concept and I stand by my initial review that the cheftestants have personality.

I just wish the personality wasn’t so unstable because it’s ruining the stability of the show as well…

“Top Chef: Just Desserts” airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on Bravo…

Photo Credit: Kelsey McNeal/Bravo