Stephe Recommends…

Stephe Recommends Schadenfreude.netThere is a drought of TV. Seriously, the amount of good shows, fun shows, shows that use the word “bollocks” is nearly non-existent. I don’t blame this on Producers, Writers or Strikes – I blame us, as consumers. We constantly pick the shitty shows to watch. This has forced me to expand my viewing habits. I’m going to do a weekly “Shows to Watch” – I’m gonna pick a show that you may have heard about – maybe even watched once – and try to argue WHY you should watch it. It’s my way to help spread the love.

This week – I dive into Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares, and not the one on FOX – that one sucks. I’m talking BBCAmerica baby!

Gordon Ramsay -

I first learned of the phenomenon of Gordon Ramsay when I caught an episode of Hell’s Kitchen on FOX. All I remember is thinking, “Is it smart to yell and harangue (yes, I used the word harangue) people when they have so many sharp knives available to them?!” Nobody spilled blood, but I could not understand why America was in love with the British Guy Who is Mean to be Mean (aka – Simon). I watched 2 episodes, then gave up. Not my style.

During the TV Drought of ’07 (I’m not referring to it as the Writer’s Strike anymore) – and TV was in the whole with such shows as “My Choir Sings Better”, flipping around, I found Ramsay’s BBC show – “Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares”. In it, he did more of the same, yelling at people, telling them they are doing things terribly, etc. EXCEPT – this time, there was swearing. Sheila loved it from the get-go, and I came along for the ride. After 3 episodes, I began to see the method behind his madness. He doesn’t yell at people to just yell at people – he yells as the idiots who deserve to be yelled at. He yells at the restaurant manager that doesn’t turn tables properly. He yells at chefs that serve under-cooked food. He yells as the waitress who is just a git. He never yells at the customer.

And THAT is what makes the show brilliant. Imagine someone yelling at the bearded guy who runs Pauline’s – telling him that under-cooked potatoes with a bit of onion do not make “home fries” – how awesome would that be?! That’s what I thought.

Now, I’m not saying that you need to watch every episode. And I’m DEFINITELY not suggesting you watch the FOX incarnation of it (however, there will be some Chicago restaurants in the mix… c’mon Pauline’s) – BUT, watch a couple on BBC America. Especially if you catch the one about “The Priory” – a restaurant in a church? Yes, it’s as good as you think it is.

You can thank me later.