'Hell's Kitchen' puts steak on the menu

Robert_hellskitchen_s5_240 I've been pleased with the changes Hell's Kitchen has made thus far this season. They have altered things just enough to keep it all new and different, except for tonight. Tonight we were supposed to get something gruesome and disgusting and we just didn't.

Woken up early, our chefs were taken to an undisclosed location and Scott asked them if there were any heart conditions or fears of heights in the group. No one answered in the affirmative so they all suited up and entered a slaughterhouse. Frankly, it wasn't terribly exciting. We saw no slaughtering. We saw no killing floor. I'm not even sure that it was a slaughterhouse, it just may have been a really large butcher's shop. It was a stunt that simply didn't pan out (the description of the episode calls it a "meat locker," but let's face it, they wanted us to think we were getting a slaughterhouse).

The challenge tonight was, of course, cow related. The teams had to first identity bits of beef -- you know, flank or filet mignon or quarter pounder -- on a plate and then pinpoint where they came from on a cow... a fake cow. See, that was cutting corners again, if the show wanted shock value, they should have had actual cows and branding irons. That would have been something. I'm definitely going to lobby for the producers to go in that direction next season.

The men had the challenge won, and then Seth went and almost destroyed the whole thing for the guys. Thank goodness the women had Lacey on their side, otherwise the women might have actually managed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. I still can't figure out between Lacey and Colleen who is more incompetent.

Okay, that may be a little unfair, after losing the competition, Lacey didn't threaten to quit this week. She complained extensively about the punishment and apparently hurt herself while helping carry a side of beef, but she didn't quit. Totally a step in the right direction for her. She also ate some of the tongue, liver, intestines, heart, and other bits of deliciousness the women were served as a part of their punishment.

I did find that part of the episode odd. The show made it seem as though eating the liver and tongue was a punishment. Scott even provided the women with barf bags. Barf bags? For liver? For tongue? Come on, that's delicious stuff, people. More than one of the women heaved, and Andrea not only heaved, she cried, too. And people say reality shows are cruel.

For dinner service, the show actually did two seatings, both in steakhouse format. The men cooked first and the women second (the team not cooking was serving). Part of the game was to feed as many people as possible, so the women completely sabotaged the men early on, taking forever to get orders in.

Then, the men sabotaged themselves. Ben tried to give Ramsay some desserts to send out prior to the tables getting their dinner. Giovanni (an executive chef at a steak house) sent out practically raw beef... more than once. I could continue with the men's disastrous service, but I think you get the point -- the men, though hurt by the women, shot themselves in the foot repeatedly.

Speaking of repeating, repeat after me -- "four Caesar salads: three shrimp, one plain." Not that tough is it? Colleen couldn't handle repeating that to Ramsay when the women were in the kitchen. Ramsay may have asked her to say it a few too many times, but it still shouldn't have been that hard. Andrea however, did a good job cooking up the steaks. The men tried to sabotage her, bringing back food that was perfectly cooked on more than one occasion, but she still did well (except for running out of strips at the end).

It wasn't really a shock to find out that the women won dinner service, what was a shock was that Seth announced to the rest of the men that he wanted to nominate Giovanni because Giovanni was the best there and it would be better to send him home. A bunch of the men backed him, but not enough, Charlie and Seth got nominated instead. Seth tried to get a recount in front of Ramsay, but Ramsay wasn't buying -- he knew who the weakest guys were (clearly the men are going to fall apart in the weeks to come).

Ramsay opted to send Charlie home this week. I think it was a toss up. It didn't bother me that Charlie went home, but Seth would have been a good choice too. And Lacey, let's not forget Lacey. Ramsay could never be in the wrong sending Lacey home.

Just as a side note, Robert apparently missed his wedding to be on the show, because being on the show was more important. That's dedication for you. That's heart. That's also vaguely delusional as from what we've seen thus far I can't imagine Robert winning the competition.

Actually, that's also my question of the week -- your fiancé (or fiancée) wants to go on a TV show to get embarrassed rather than get married to you. Do you a) let them go, b) make them stay, c) demand the show take you both, or d) force the show to marry you and then have your significant other and their team cook your wedding reception dinner? Why didn't the show do that?

The TV and Film Guy's Reviews - we're "e," all of the above.

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