I know, I know. I am already way behind on recapping this season, you don’t have to tell me. It doesn’t help either that FOX is running two episodes back to back each week, those bastards. Don’t they know I have other things to do too??? Anyway, the last two episodes had a bunch of contestants auditioning for Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich, and Graham Elliot, the three judges doing what they do best: ripping apart dreams while deciding who is worthy of earning the MasterChef apron. This episode marks the final day of auditions.
First up, Howard, a 26 year old Army veteran (an assistant machine gunner in Afghanistan), who’s ready to prove his worth in the kitchen. Hell, he already fought for our country, they should just give him an apron. Howard tells the judges that his love of food comes from his grandmother as he prepares his “Peach Cobbler with Bourbon and Blackberries”. Gordon tastes first, he tells him it’s rustic and charming. Graham is next, he likes the use of the graham cracker. Heh. Joe says it takes a lot of courage to present a dessert, but he said it’s a nice home dessert. Gordon says he can’t get past the amount of bourbon in it, it’s a no. Graham agrees, but says he’s going to go out on a limb, he’s a yes. It’s down to Joe, who gets up and asks him to take a walk with him. They walk out to the waiting room where Howard introduces Joe to his grandmother, who has this look like she’s going to beat the living snot out of him if he doesn’t pick her grandson. Joe’s got some news…he’s gonna give him an apron. Grandma face does a BIG 180 and she jumps for joy. That can’t be good for her back.
Montage time: one lady brings her stuffed animals with her to symbolize her love for cooking, a guy burns his food and wants the judges to look past that and see his potential (“No”), and plenty of other contestants who get the boot. No theme this time.
Next up, Johnny, a carpenter, who is making “Lobster Crackerjacks with Popcorn and Coconut”. Gordon is weirded out by the ingredients: lobster, popcorn, nuts, and caramel all served in a cocktail glass. Johnny tells them people keep asking him to make more, so it must be good. Let’s see. Gordon goes first, he tastes and gives him a smile. Graham is next and Johnny comments that he’s smaller in person, Graham says the camera “adds 180 pounds”, after tasting, he says it’s salty and sweet, buttery and crunchy. He too gives Johnny a smile. Joe is the last one up, tastes, gives him a good, hard long stare and walks away. The judges discuss: “popcorn should never go with lobster”, “it’s so out there, I don’t even know”, “we don’t have anything to compare it to”. They’re back to give them their decision, Gordon begins by saying that the combination of popcorn and lobster does not read well on a menu. Dun dun dun.
Gordon says that even thought it doesn’t read well, there’s something it’s very intriguing and it actually works. It’s a yes from Gordon. Joe wants to know if Johnny is just trying to dazzle them with his dish, Johnny tells them he’s in it all the way. Joe says it’s an “out there” yes. Graham also gives him a yes. Johnny’s in. Johnny is the last cook chosen for the top 36 contestants. Unfortunately, those 36 are about to get whittled down to 18, er, 19, the first challenge awaits.
The contestants are led through the warehouse into they arrive at the big room. Gordon informs them that this is going to be a scary, challenge for all of them because of…the lamb he walks off to grab. The contestants ooh and aah over the little bugger, but I’m paying more attention to all the pretty brunette female contestants. What? I’m supposed to fawn over the lamb too? He tells them they’re not going to cook the little guy he’s holding, but they need to turn around. Why? It’s the “Attack of the Lambs” as a horde of them come running in. The contestants react accordingly: baa-ing, screaming, oohing, aahing, and commenting on the peeing and pooping. After they’ve all settled down, Gordon informs them they’re going to have every single part of the lamb at their disposal in “The Pantry”, EVERYTHING, even their skinless little heads. Oh, and plenty of ingredients to make that lamb head (or whatever lamb part these bastards choose to use) taste delicious. They’re going to have 60 minutes. He lets them go, and off they go running. It’s a frenzy, mostly because a female contestant pushes a male contestant to the floor. Ha, he called her a bitch.
The contestants rummage through the pantry, getting everything they need. Now it’s off to the kitchen to cook, as each of the 36 (I’m getting vibes of Touch when I say that, and unfortunately, only one person will probably get that reference) commence work on their dishes. The judges are making their rounds. Joe calls out one guy for trying to make a lot of dishes when he should only be focusing on one dish. Graham visits Luca and talks with him briefly. Later, they’re discussing amongst themselves the bad choices/ideas that they’ve seen, i.e. using Coca Cola with their BBQ Lamb ribs. Graham states that some of these contestants are starting to show their true colors and need to be taken out of the kitchen. Uh oh. At the fifteen minute mark, Gordon yells out that they’ve seen enough from some of the contestants and that Joe is going to start coming around and start collecting aprons. Shit just got real.
Joe lurks around, like a shark searching for its prey. The first one out is Gabriela, for making too many technical mistakes. James (a.k.a. the guys pushed down before the commercial break) is told to go, so is Bryan. Aw man, I was wanting to see some more people cut. There’s a little bad mouthing going on between two contestants, but I don’t know their names. She says something that’s bleeped out though, I bet it was funny. Time’s up and after the cooks walk around, they break the remaining contestant up into three groups.
The first group has Dean (the skinny version of Johnny), Adriana (the cute Mexican chick), Kevin (the Pastor), Natasha (a.k.a “The Bleeped Out Girl”), and Eddie (the football player). The rest of the contestants are broken into the other two groups: one is the group with the cooks that have impressed the judges and are staying, the second group are the one who were the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked. After a moment of suspense, the first team (which includes Bime and Sasha Fox) are told that they are staying; thus causing the other group to break down in tears (well just one contestant in particular). Some girl named Duckie rattles off about coming back next year, but…she’s pretty annoying as it is (she has been all episode long, I’ve just chosen not to mention her because, well, you know, annoy, plus, her name is Duckie…). There are 8 contestants left at their stations, including Luca. These are the ones that the judges aren’t too sure about. They’re called up to the front, the judges are going to taste and decides who stays and who goes. Gordon calls up Malcolm and Seymira. Malcolm goes first, with his “Lamb Trio with Sausage, Rib, and Loin Salad”. Gordon questions whether the meat was cooked medium rare, he cuts into it and yep, it’s medium rare. Graham goes next, he says it’s a little dry but he’s pulled it off. Seymira is then called up, she’s made “Cotes D’Agneau Chermoula with Casablanca Couscous” (thank goodness for DVR). Gordon and Joe taste, Gordon says the lamb was the delicious and the sauce works well, Joe says she could have used a little more salt (or little less, I couldn’t quite tell). According to Gordon, one is staying and one is going, and if you’re already seen this episode, you already know who it is. I do not, so I have to wait and fast forward through the commercials to see who.
So, Malcolm and Samara, one of them is going to stay, who is it going to be? It’s going to be Malcolm. Seymira leaves crying. The next two contestants up are Johnny and Bryan (I guess there were two?). Johnny’s made “Lamb Rangoon with Tzatziki Coleslaw”, Graham tells him it’s tasty, it has oomph. Joe tastes and gives him, “El Stare-o Down-o”. Bryan follows with his dish, “Southwest Liver and Onions with Cactus Salad”, and Sasha Fox is in the background making a face. Graham tastes first, saying he likes his liver less cooked, thinks the sauce could be a little more acidic. Bryan then takes the time to say that he believes that, after seeing Johnny’s dish, he’s going to be moving forward. Sasha Fox gives a “what the funk are you doing?” look, Eddie laughs at his cockiness (it’s assumed that he and the other four cooks from the first group from earlier had kick ass dishes). Gordon walks up and tears into him, saying it looks like he murdered the lamb, causing some more snickers from the other contestants. Bryan tells him he believes that it’s the most beautiful dish he’s ever cooked, and Gordon questions this. It’s time for the decision, Graham does this one, saying they’re both not going to the MasterChef kitchen, only one of them is going. Ha, see what he did there? The person who is staying is Johnny, obviously. Brian is going back to blow up trees and get roadkill, more power to you dude.
The next two up are Nancy and Bree. Nancy goes up first with “Lamb Chop with Red Pepper and Artichoke”, and I could make a comment about how her looking as good as she does might be the push she needs to prove herself or how her voice sounds pretty sexy, and I did. Joe is the first to taste. Her dish, you perverts! He tells her it’s a well constructed dish, restaurant quality, only the garlic is a little too strong. Graham would like the puree to be a little smoother. Bree is next with her, “Four Seasons Lamb with Mashed Potatoes”, a well put dish if I say so myself. It should be noted that she is the opposite of Nancy, she’s got that bookish quiet look to her, oh and she’s a vegetarian. This is something that Joe tells her, it could have been a little better had she had more experience eating meat and cooking. Moment of truth: Bree wins, thus proving that hot chicks can’t always get away with using their looks to advance, or MasterChef has already filled their quota of hot looking contestants this season. Either way, Bree goes on and Nancy walks away offering one last glimpse of herself to all the males on the show, and me.
It’s down to the final two, Luca and Beth (where’d she come from???). Luca is called up first, he’s made “Lamb Loin Roulade stuffed with Sweetbread, Endive, and Goat Cheese”. Gordon asks him where he’s seen lamb stuffed with sweetbread. Gordon doesn’t look to impressed. Joe comes up and asks him why he didn’t make something he knows. After tasting, he tells him the lamb is cooked pretty well. Beth comes up with her “Lavender Hay Roasted Loin with Fried Sweetbreads and Celeric Puree”. Gordon tells her she’s got the temperature down by not singeing the lamb, but there was fat left on, a little less than perfect. Graham would have preferred she not cook the lamb as long. So, which of these two are going forward?
Is it going to be Luca, the charming Italian hoping to acheive success, or the artsy looking cute redheaded Beth? Well, it’s Beth which means poor Luca is going home again. The look on the contestants’ faces (well, really Jessie and Natasha, who the camera seems to love focusing on this episode) show their disappoint for him. Gordon tells Luca that he knows how much he’s done and how far he’s gone in the past year, and he wants him to continue to pursuing his dream because he’s going into the MasterChef kitchen. Sweet! And damn you Gordon Ramsay for your reckless use of suspenseful dialogue, making me think he was going to get kicked off.