Top Chef
Sunny Delights

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Bye, Bye Birdsong

The three finalists go quietly back to the waiting cheftestants, and Brian (MALARKEY!) gets applause -- reluctant, from Howie and Joey From New York, it appears -- before Sara N. tells Howie, Joey From New York, Tre, and Sandee to get their asses in front of the judges. Tre admits he thinks he's there because his food was too salty. Colicchio repeats the thought that some was underseasoned and some was too salty. NORM! suggests Tre phoned this one in. Gail reminds Colicchio of what Tre said to him about how he could do the task in his sleep. "Well, maybe not," Gail points out. "Maybe a bad nightmare," Tre nods. Joey From New York's idea for his dish came from the childhood barbecues he used to have at home; they always did chicken, "I don't know, maybe chicken's not too imaginative, I really don't know." His tone implies, "And I really don't care." Gail doesn't mind that he did chicken, he just should have done something upscale. Joey From New York agrees. "And it was super-hot, hard to pick up," Gail adds. "Well, I like to serve my protein super-hot," Joey From New York argues. How stupid. NORM! asks him how many of his guests were eating that hot chicken without utensils. Joey From New York nods slowly. It's not clear he even gets NORM!'s point. Sandee admits she's totally shocked to be in the bottom four. Colicchio breaks it to her that not only didn't she do barbecue, but he didn't taste lobster in her dish at all -- just butter. NORM! adds that the sweetness of the dates completely overpowered the lobster. Gail agrees with only tasting the butter and not lobster and repeats that it just wasn't barbecue. Howie admits his pork was dried out and that he made a mistake in slicing it too early. He knows it wasn't his best effort. Padma asks if Joey From New York tasted anyone else's food. He tasted Tre's and Sandee's, but he believes Howie should go because he didn't complete the first Elimination Challenge and he heard guests complaining about the dryness of the pork. "But you didn't taste it," Padma confirms. Howie shoots back that Joey From New York has been doing a ton of complaining and that if Howie goes home today, Joey From New York will join him soon because pointing fingers and blaming others is not a sign of leadership. Padma sends them off.

Joey From New York tells us, "I'm a very emotional person, you know, my blood flows red and competition brings out the animal in me." Wait, what color does he think blood flows for unemotional people? Green? Is he a closet Trekkie? In the back, Joey From New York makes a decision. "You know what?" he shoots at Howie, "Next time I'm in that room, I'll walk out, okay? Next time in there, you better step up and be a man." Okay, what does that mean? Howie doesn't know either and says, "I wasn't a man? I wasn't a man?" while Joey From New York talks over him, "This is the second time. This is the second time." "You've been blaming everybody else for your bullshit -- shake somebody's fucking hand to be a man. You be a fucking man!" Howie retorts. I think this is maybe about the fact that Howie wouldn't shake Joey From New York's hand when they left the Judges' Table? It could have happened in the hallway and we didn't see it. It sounds like Howie is trying to say, "I don't need to shake somebody's fucking hand to be a man and I'm not going to shake your fucking hand after what you did to me in there." Joey From New York adds that Howie is lucky he's from Florida because "this guy's from Florida." I think he's referring to NORM! "Oh yeah, I'm lucky," Howie says, pulling the most priceless expression of disgust mingled with disbelief. Howie tells us, "Don't take your shit out on me and think I'm gonna shake your hand like everything's everything. That's not how I am." "Like everything's everything"? I don't know what that means but I do know that I totally have to start using it all the time. "Don't blow through the stop sign, like everything's everything!" or "Hey, you're the one who drank Post Road Pumpkin Ale without me, so don't talk to me like everything's everything!" Howie's not done with Joey From New York. "You know what? I would've been a fucking MAN about it and YOU would have fucking bitched like a little girl, okay? Like you've been doing all day," Howie bellows, standing up. "You want me to go home now? You want me to go home now? I'll go home now," Joey From New York asks. What a weird comeback. Sara N. has covered her face. Howie sits down, "I don't give a fuck what you do! I'm here to do MY best. You do YOUR best. We'll see what happens. Arrightj?" How is Howie not from New York with an accent like that? Beaten, Joey From New York finally shuts up.

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