I don’t like reality shows. I really don’t like competition reality shows. I really really don’t like cooking-/food-based competition reality shows.
I realize that the three above statements cancel out a lot of television for me, but I still have hope from time to time. Honest, I do. The reason I peek an eye in on the cooking reality shows because I want shows to get back to not only teaching people how to cook, but also encouraging a love of food. Reality shows, for the most part–it seems, are not that interested in anything but drama. Still, I give things a chance.
On the way into work last Monday, the local free paper had an article about “Kitchen Casino”, a gambling-themed cooking competition… yeah, no. Not only is the prize just $30,000–for the final champion, weekly contestants aren’t guaranteed that–but here are two items from the host’s Q&A that really turned me off:
What do cooking and gambling have in common?
They’re like America’s two loves! Americans love to gamble, and they love to eat. On the show, that translates into rounds like a kind of roulette, where chefs might not wind up finishing the dish they start out making.
Do cooking competition shows create better chefs?
I think they do, because the pressure is on. Chefs have like 30 or 40 minutes to create a dish. It teaches them to think on their feet and quickly produce things.