It’s another 2 hours of MasterChef, because someone wants this season over with as quickly as possible.
Before I get to Episode 5, a quick note about myself. I used to work in reality television as a production assistant, a post producer, and a casting director, giving me some experience in all three production levels: pre-production, production-production, and post-production. This explains my cynical viewpoint. I see this show less as a cooking competition and more as a story vehicle. It’s a reality-based soap opera. A melodrama. There are heroes, villains, and even gods. Whoa. Maybe it’s more Greek mythology than a soap, the pawns seemingly unaware of their own manipulation.
Additionally, I like to make predictions as the episodes go on. Though I rewatch these episodes to write the recaps, any predictions you read in here are made during my first viewing. As shown in past recaps, I’m not always right. Those are my favorite moments, when the storywriters and editors fool me. All right, on with the episode.
It’s time for the first Team Challenge, and Graham is (supposedly) driving the Home Cooks to a school in a school bus. There’s a running joke about Graham driving things. I remember a tractor, at least. Maybe some of you can remember other instances. Team Challenges mostly suck. Challenges involving kids always suck. Prepare for a half-hour of suck on suck action.
Team Challenges in MasterChef have nothing to do with being the Best Home Cook in America, which is supposed to be what this show is about. It’s solely about creating tension between the Home Cooks. I see why the show uses them. The animosity between competitors helps define their characters more clearly, and perhaps these challenges are the best way to create this tension. They’re just so boring, though.
Jessie and Jordan are the captains of the Red and Blue teams respectively, and the picking of teams is mostly uneventful. Male Lynn is the first pick. Jordan picks Krissi, saying he isn’t scared of her while a puddle of urine pools at his feet. Kathy is the final pick and mentions being underestimated for the second time this season. She’s being built up as the Home Cook who fights through adversity to make it farther in the competition than anyone believed possible. I predict she makes the top 5 before being sent home with an emotionally proud speech from Gordon.
The teams prepare an entrée, a vegetable, and a dessert for 300 kids. The Red Team makes a smart move with corn over green vegetables but then mind-blowingly decides to make chicken teriyaki. More like chicken teriyucky. Am I right, kids? They say I’m right and super cool.
Blue Team is making turkey meatball pasta and green beans. Gordon is concerned that they’re not going to have enough balls to feed all of these kids. Is Gordon wearing mom jeans? He is.
Joe and Graham are concerned that the Red Team is essentially boiling their chicken with their poor grilling technique, because if there’s one thing that kids hate, it’s boiled chicken. The Blue Team decides to chop their balls and make a sauce. Gordon then fixes the Red Team’s horrible sauce and corn, which seems a little unfair.
Blah blah blah. None of this matters, because these are kids. They don’t care what they eat; they’re going to pick their favorite color. Red is the strongest color on the spectrum. Your eye detects red as being closer to you than other colors, which is why brands prefer red. Blue is the second most preferred color as your eye detects it as being the farthest away. Red also makes people hungry. Pizza Hut’s commercials are slathered in red. Anyhow, my guess is the kids will pick the Red Team, since they’re easily suggestible.
James is creeped out by the kids’ tiny hands. The kids are creeped out by James. After a bunch of Blue Team mini-interviews, it’s painfully obvious that the Red Team is going to win.
Kid Stampede! KIDPEDE!!
Red Team wins with 58%. Krissi blames Jordan because she doesn’t understand color theory. Time for the fun part of the show: the Pressure Test.
Jordan chooses Howard, James, and himself to skip the Pressure Test. Krissi says he has no honor. Besides color theory, she also doesn’t understand that there is no honor in MasterChef.
The six remaining Home Cooks are tasked with making a cheesecake. Eddie has never made a cheesecake before, but the producers must show them the basics off-camera, because he makes one. Kathy is making a berry compote topping. Savannah is the baker of the group, and she’s making a salted caramel cheesecake. Cutie Patootie Adriana is using guava paste and mango. Graham asks, “Guava paste?” and Cutie Patootie either doesn’t clue in on his concern or doesn’t care because she is the guava paste master.
Eddie’s oven is smoking. He opens the door and discovers a football inside. He replaces it with his cheesecake and gets back to work. Johnny B is putting pineapple on his which Gordon says won’t cut easily, and Graham rats out Cutie Patootie and her guava paste to the other judges. Time’s up. Time for tasting.
Krissi’s cheesecake fell and is topped with raspberry turd bombs. It doesn’t matter, because it tastes bomb. The judges love it.
Johnny B brings up his spiritless, smushed pineapple cheesecake. Joe says it tastes okay, but still mostly hates it.
Kathy is next, and her cheesecake sings. Eddie’s cheesecake has bloody fruit on it, but it’s still delicious. These two are safe.
Savannah bakes. It’s what she does. She also chokes. Her cake is too sweet and heavy on the crust.
Cutie Patootie looks like a tart. Oh wait, that’s her cake that looks like a tart. Gordon has a big problem with her using canned guava paste, which was set out with the other toppings specifically as a trap.
The bottom three is Johnny B, Savannah, and Cutie Patootie. Johnny nailed his filling and is saved first, and it’s between the two ladies. Cutie Patootie says that Savannah will go home, and Savannah agrees. This means that Cutie Patootie will go home. She does.
The story writing has been lazy and predictable so far this season, as the Opposites Rule has been in full effect. Last season didn’t feel so predictable. Maybe this will change as the season progresses and the Home Cooks are whittled down.
Goodbye, Adriana. You were cute. You were patoot. But now you’re kaput.