The finale! Just kidding! The first of the last 100 episodes! This season is interminable. Call your cable provider and ask them to STOP carrying Bravo. Seriously, guys, don’t you have other shows? Why don’t we wrap this show up and give some other shows a chance to bore people out of their minds. I can’t even enjoy what is usually one of my favorite parts of any Top Chef season, which is when the remaining contestants regroup after the break between the marathon dash to the final four and the marathon dash to a spread in Food & Wine magazine and we get to see everyone’s NEW HAIRCUT! That’s the best part! But this year it’s spoiled because I’m filled with dread, knowing that even though we’re in Canada now, we’re far from finished. In the day’s first challenge, everyone has 30 minutes to cook a dish, and for each minute they use, another contestant will be brought back to compete. Time’s up, utensils down. There are 400 people on the show now. (Basically.)

Everyone arrives in Canada. Something something Toyota. They have to drive themselves to the first challenge? The fuck kind of low-rent show is this? Speaking of new haircuts, you know what hasn’t changed? Sarah’s still a total bitch!

I actually found myself swearing OUT LOUD at the television last night pretty much anytime Sarah was on, which was the whole time. Just what a fucking nightmare asshole. (In her defense, this is one of the MAIN reasons I would never go on reality television. There are a ton of great reasons not to, but I just know that the editors would have a field day with my footage and by the end of the season everyone would hate that arrogant, vain racist who never holds the elevator, or whatever. Don’t do it guys! Being on reality TV is like getting your caricature drawn at Busch Gardens by someone who HATES YOU.) They’re driving to the show and Paul asks Beverly a question and when Beverly starts to answer, Sarah shouts “LOOK AT THAT TREE!” and Lindsay laughs. Fuck you, too, Lindsay. I’m sure there was something weird about Beverly that the producers are keeping from us, because there is simply too much footage of people talking about hating her, but man oh man if they haven’t made her into a VERY sympathetic character surrounded by impolite MONSTERS with NO MANNERS. Lindsay interviews that her and Sarah and Paul have been through this since day one. Uh, RELAX. So has Beverly? A) She was eliminated for all of two weeks and B) she was still competing on everyone’s favorite Web Series, Last Chance Kitchen. I just find these chefs’ arguments for why they are great and Beverly stinks to be completely uncompelling.

The chefs meet Tom and Padma at the top of a mountain. It looks miserraabblllllle (see above). Didn’t the chefs get to go to Costa Rica or something last season? I would be so pissed. Tom and Padma explain that this mountain was the site of the 2010 Olympics so it’s “only fitting” that this week’s elimination series will be like an Olympics for food. UGH. I hate the Olympics. So boring. Now we’re having an Olympics of food? What does that even mean? Also why is it fitting? Those Olympics were two years ago. This show sucks. For the first challenge, everyone has to cook in a gondola. Right. Like the Olympics! At some point they have to get out of the gondola and get a new ingredient and use that ingredient in their dish who cares I’m already so over it. Cook cook cook. Gondola gondola gondola. Paul says that he’s out of his element. Which makes you wonder whose element is cooking in a gondola?

I love you Paul, but hush it. Everyone is out of their element. This is the same as how Lindsay and Sarah will not shut up this episode about how they “want to win” each challenge or how they “want to be” Top Chef. YEAH, THAT IS WHAT EVERYONE ON THE SHOW WANTS, WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? It makes me so mad.

Everyone’s dishes do look surprisingly good considering they were cooked on a gondola. Paul made lamb! Beverly’s knife work is impressive! The guest judge for this challenge is a professional snowboarder. She knows a lot about top-tier gourmet cooking Cheetos and Mountain Dew Code Snowboard. She can’t help but dish out HUGE PRAISE for the chefs: “This is good. I wouldn’t have even said this was cooked on a gondola.” Oh brother.

Paul has the worst dish. Sarah has the third worst dish. It’s between Lindsay and Beverly. Who will be the Olympics?! Lindsay wins with her perfectly cooked salmon over red quinoa “risotto” with chorizo and horseradish vinaigrette. She gets $10,000 furnished by Who Cares and she’s done for this week. (SPOILER ALERT: you might think that someone would be eliminated this week and then next week the final three would compete to see who is Top Chef, which is still squeezing an extra episode out of this cold rock after squeezing the Beverly episode and the Final 50 episodes at the top of the season, BUT NO! Next week someone else is eliminated and it’s down to the FINAL TWO. This show is actually becoming RUDE. We have lives to lead, Bravo. Human lives with value.) Congratulations, Lindsay. You wanted to win and you won, so now it’s up to these people who probably don’t even want to win to see who will win whatever, it’s not important to anyone else just you.

For the second Olympic Sport, I’m Sure, all of the ingredients are frozen in blocks of ice! You know how the Olympics are. And also how Food Challenges work. (What is even going on anymore? Is this show still about cooking good food? Or just cooking the least garbage food after a comically exhausting exercise in public humiliation?) Cook cook cook. Ice ice ice. For this challenge, the guest judge is another Olympic sportsman who won a gold medal in “Skeleton” whatever that is! Regardless, never has the beauty and glory of an Olympic gold medal looked less noble than when it’s flipped out waist high on a reality TV show.

Sarah doesn’t win this round in terms of cooking, but she does win in terms of saying INCREDIBLE THINGS. She interviews that Beverly has already been eliminated once, so she has nothing left to lose. Uh, fuck you? Do you even understand what having nothing left to lose means? It doesn’t mean that you don’t want to win. Sarah’s a fucking idiot. Which she proves two seconds later by explaining that Beverly could be that “silent horse,” which is A VERY FUNNY MISTAKE THAT I WILL BE USING IN MY OWN LIFE, but then she goes on to make it kind of racist by explaining that Beverly is a fierce competitor who will turn into a “tiger” and attack you. When you are talking about an Asian person that you hate, let’s leave tigers and dragons out of it, Sarah, you stupid stupid jerk. I wish YOU were a silent horse.

Hack hack hack. Ice ice ice. Paul wins with his poached king crab, toasted almonds, and mango chutney with orange marmalade, even though the mango was still a little frozen. Well, of course it was. Because of how it was ENCASED IN A BLOCK OF ICE. Paul actually double-wins because he helped BOTH Sarah and Beverly to crack open their ice blocks, and he had to change his recipe after Beverly used all his wine, and he gave one of his ingredients to Sarah for her dish. Paul is great and I’m so excited for him to clearly win this show as he has been destined to do from the very beginning. It is written. Seriously, though, look at this beautiful shit that he carved out of ice and made in the woods!!!

For the final and most hilarious elimination challenge, Beverly and Sarah have to do actual physical exertion! Just like a real Olympic Sports! They have to ski to the shooting range and then they each have 10 bullets to finish each other off with God I wish shoot at targets, each target being an ingredient. At first Beverly is just cruising past Sarah on those skis and Sarah huffs and puffs so hard that it’s almost embarrassing but then Beverly starts falling every two seconds and Sarah catches up but then Sarah starts falling every two seconds and it’s just like, FINE, you’re both awful. Beverly does still make it to the shooting range a little early. She hits her first target on the first shot! But then she proceeds to miss a bunch of shots and just to get some celery root? You’re going to waste how many bullets on celery root? Sarah shows up after already saying that she would never forgive herself for losing to Beverly, which, I hate you so much Sarah, and then proceeds to brag about how everyone in her family has guns so she’s going to have an advantage before not only missing her first four shots entirely, but then BITCHING about how she feels like Beverly got more shots than her. OH GOOD GOD! You are on a reality TV show that has perpetually singled out Beverly for abuse and disdain, and also no one actually cares who wins. So, uh, no. Beverly didn’t secretly get more bullets than you, you horrible, obnoxious, whiny, self-important, doomed to fail garbage troll. (It’s not nice to call someone a garbage troll, but it’s also not nice to spend 14 weeks on national television disparaging someone in harsh and humorless ways. So, even stevens?)

Cook cook cook. Sarah’s a bitch Sarah’s a bitch Sarah’s a bitch. Beverly makes slow-cooked arctic char with onion & beet compote, celery root truffle purée & fennel salad, which the judges think is earthy and a departure from her usual reliance on an Asian flavor profile, although the fish was a little over cooked. Sarah makes braised rabbit leg & rabbit heart iwth cherries, hazelnuts & sauerkraut purée. The judges are impressed that she made sauerkraut so quickly and that she dared to try and braise something, and the flavors are good but the rabbit was not tender enough. It’s a squeaker! Who will go on to the next 15 episodes, and who will be eliminated only to be brought back three years from now in a stunning reversal in S09E147?! Sarah wins.

I actually for real yell at the TV. She then has the gall back in the kitchen to hug Beverly and say how glad she was that they got to cook together. Gross. Fuck Sarah. Fuck the Olympics. Fuck this show.

Next week: ugh, don’t even remind me about next week.

Comments (27)
  1. I like to think that Padma’s tears were a sign that the producers had taken them all hostage. Or just regret that they still haven’t been able to rid themselves of Sarah.

  2. I tuned into an episode of Top Chef and an episode of Chopped broke out!!

  3. Good lord. Who invited these jerks to Canada? Get out of my country, jerks.

  4. OMG Top Chef how about you just let the chefs COOK SOME DAMN FOOD oh my GOD this show pisses me OFF

  5. SKELETON is like the LUGE except instead of going down that ice track feet first you go down head first like the fucking craziest person in the world.

  6. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • I can understand why Beverly would be annoying to Sarah and the others. She is new-agey and a little out of touch. In close quarters, that could be irritating.

      But as an adult, I know that if I’m interviewed about my performance on a show, I don’t sit and bitch repeatedly about someone else. And I don’t roll my eyes when someone I don’t like accomplishes something or is praised. That is just immature, and will never serve to make you look better. Paul never resorted to saying negative things. While being bullied by Sarah, Lindsey, and many others, Beverly never resorted to talking shit. She just went about her business.

      If Sarah had been on the phone to her boyfriend/husband, and bitched about not liking someone, I would probably have sympathy for a bitch edit. But she chose to spend her interviews bitching about someone else, instead of talking about the challenges or her own accomplishments. (Also, a lot of the shit that was said about Beverly had a racist undertone. I’m not saying these people are racist, but I am saying that they said some racist shit.)

      No matter what Beverly did (shown or unshown), Sarah was worse.

      • For the record, Sarah and Heather are the worst people to be on this show, and maybe the worst in reality television history. Their constant bullying and disrespecting of Beverly – to her face – is ridiculous.

        In all fairness though, I’m sure the producers/interviewer kept asking Sarah about Beverly in the interviews to strike up more drama. She probably didn’t just sit down in a Real World confession booth and start rambling about Beverly.

        Now, she could have been mature about it and not said nasty things that could be edited into a stream of nightmare phrases, but like Gabe said, the producers can really make you look like an asshole – even if you aren’t as big of an asshole as it seems.

        • There was a This American life around Spetember/October last year of a first-person account of an ex-producer on a reality show, and ti was terrible to hear what is asked of the ‘contestants’ to fulfill the narrative structures the show writers want to do.

          Reality tv is anything but. Shocking, I know.

          • I believe that particular TAL segment was a work of fiction. However, I’ve heard many actual participants in “reality TV” make plain the attempt to write a narrative into their shows that didn’t exist in reality.

          • That story on TAL was so good. Even if it was fiction, you know it was based on someone’s true strory. BTW, if you love Ira Glass, did you hear him on the Savage Lovecast last week? He was great! Ira and Dan Savage together was like my Valentines dream come true.

  7. Sarah, please stop making that excited face. You know when your mouth flops open and you put your hands on your cheeks? Reserve that shit for actually exciting stuff.

    Patti Labelle, Padma announcing a weird challenge, Charlize Theron, Paul and Lindsey coming into the kitchen before the final judging?!?!?

    You can’t possibly be that excited about all of those things.

  8. This show needs to be called Top Bully because I feel like I’ve spent 123 weeks watching someone get bullied. Sarah is the meanest jerk ever. I’d also like to say for the record that rabbit with a slice of rabbit heart over saurkraut sounds revolting, and her explanation of why she made it “because it’s cold here so Northern Italy/Germany” was TOP NONSENSE!

  9. Did anyone else get excited when they showed the “after the commercial break” montage that implied that Beverly would get to shoot Sarah? You can tell that the editors were relying on the viewers hating Sarah (or maybe they hated her, too?)

  10. BRAVO for this recap! This sounds like a disgusting season, and I’m glad I haven’t watched it. The recaps, though, have been pure comedic gold.

  11. THANK GOD Gabe mentioned the mango being slightly frozen thing, and how OF COURSE IT WAS because it was in a block of ice and then cooked in an outdoor frozen winter wasteland!!! When Gayle gave that criticism to Paul, I swear to God if I had had a handgun at that moment I would have shot my TV, Elvis-style.

    Also, Sarah, yelling about the tree and interrupting Beverly in the van. “OMG Look at that tree!” I wish Beverly would have put Sarah into a trailer and set it on fire with a whiskey flambe.

  12. This episode made me want to run an ice pick through Andy’s Cohen’s left eye, then take it out and hammer it into Sarah’s ear.

    Also, I love Paul.

  13. I liked Beverly and am sorry to see her go. I swear she deliberately tripped Sarah on the skis and then she was using the blender at Sarah’s station, totally psyching Sarah out. It was brilliant.

    • I despise that kind of behavior. On the whole, I think Bev comes off as a passive-aggressive eternal victim who performs fragility to get her own way. On the other hand, I also despise arrogant bullies, so scratch Sarah and Lindsay. Paul has been the most consistently good cook this season, as well as coming off as a consistently decent human being. I will probably yell at my monitor is he loses.

    • I always assumed that Bev is just completely oblivious to everyone around her. Which is why she runs around like a crazy person. I really thought that she was going to stab Paul with her ice pick when she went running at the blocks of ice.

  14. That skeleton guy is instant Canadian legend Jon Montgomery, who after winning his gold medal ran through Whistler chugging a pitcher of beer singing O! Canada. It was basically the greatest moment in Canada’s history, except for that time when we finally got radio (circa 2008). He’s also a car auctioneer.

    • I remember that moment! I watched the 2010 Olympics compulsively (curling! figure skating! speed skating! etc.!), and the only thing I liked about this awful, awful episode of Top Chef is that it reminded me what a good time I had for those two weeks.

  15. Great recaps. Lots of LOLs. I hope this season falls into a pool of snakes.

  16. Sarah’s favorite actress is Gwyneth Paltrow because they are both the worst.

  17. I think they should make the chefs shoot their ingredients on every episode; but not outside, in a Whole Foods.

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