Thursday, January 18, 2007
We’ll try to bring the funny, possums, but we warn you that it was a little more difficult than usual with this episode, and we have had to scrape the sides and bottom of the barrel.
First, a synopsis.
The Quickfire Challenge was to create a dish using Nestlé’s new line of baking chocolate. The winner was Sam “Let me once again trot out the fact that I’m a diabetic” Talbot. The Elimination Challenge was to create a “romantic” five-course dinner for a contingent of couples (including the Bravo-mandated token gay couple) celebrating their anniversaries at a restaurant in Santa Barbara reportedly owned by Kevin Costner. (This seems rather fitting, inasmuch as, if the reported allegations of masseuses in Scotland are to be trusted, KC definitely believes in happy endings.)
Later that night, the cheftestants requested a video camera from the producers, and Elia Aboumrad decided to shave her head. Her Kim Kardashian, Ilan Hall, also shaved his head. Cliff Crooks decided that Marcel should have his head shaved, too. They went into the living room, where Marcel was sleeping on the couch, and Cliff put him in a headlock on the floor while Sam giggled and Ilan videotaped the whole thing and incited Sam to have a try at shaving Marcel’s head.
For his pains, Cliff was dismissed from the show, and the remaining four moved to the finals in Hawaii.
One would think that someone whose name is Ilan might, oh, you know, be sensitive to the resonance of an unpopular minority being assaulted in the middle of the night and having his head shaved while others cheer, but what do we know? And some people might have thought it less than classy for Bravo to run a poll in the first commercial break after the incident in order to determine who hates Marcel the most, with one of the answer choices being “Me,” since it might be construed as piling up on Marcel and as giving its imprimatur to the impulse behind the hazing, but what do such people know?
So what did we find amusing?
OK, here goes:
That Ilan, Elia and Marcel reenacted the Paris Hilton-Nicole Richie-Kim Kardashian triangle, with Ilan moving into Elia’s bedroom so they could wear oversize shades in bed, and paint each other’s toenails, and, as it turned out, “do” each other’s hair.
That Bravo Foreshadowing™ had Cliff declaring earlier, “I don’t plan on doing anything to screw up.”
That Sam smarmily declared, “Marcel is very adolescent.”
That Padma Lakshmi called the cheftestants, “You idiots,” in her most maternal tones.
That the token gay couple, Buck and Barry (it must save money on monograms), were celebrating their third anniversary while a few of the straight couples had been together for something like 20 years, since three is the equivalent of 20 in gay years.
That a Bravo graphic described one of the elements in Elia’s Quickfire Challenge dish as “carmelized,” which, to the extent it’s a word at all, would better describe what happened to Clint Eastwood after he became the mayor of a wealthy seaside town in Northern California.
That Cliff, who was given to wearing scrubs during the season, managed, only two days after the Golden Globes, to become the new Isaiah Washington.
That Marcel unwittingly found himself questioning being a bottom and munching rug (as well as nursing rug burns) mere seconds after the notion of being awakened by an attractive man on top of him went from being a closeted wet dream to a reality-show nightmare.
That the NBC synergy and cross-promotion machine is so well-oiled that, during the Quickfire Challenge, Padma appeared in costume for the NBC/Bravo series, Grease: You’re the One That I Want. Padma, you are….(excruciatingly suspenseful pause) NOT Sandy.
That we got to see a photo of Elia and her boyfriend on the night-stand, but no photographic evidence of a relationship between Ilan and “Carolina.”
That there was a battle of the accents and wills between Slippery-as-an-Eelia Aboumrad and Eric “Your Deesh is Beyond” Ripert.
That hot French cyborg and full-lipped “demigod” Eric Ripert declared Cliff a more authentic Mexican than Elia.
That Ilan pronounced “offal” as “ah-FALL,” since pride goeth before offal.
See? We told you it would be hard to come up with funny stuff.