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Thread: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

  1. #21
    Great Balls Of Fire! MReid's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Im starting to think Tom has something against female chefs. He probably didnt want another female chef to win this year since Kristen won last year. Idk all i know is that Nina and Shirley were both robbed this season both should have been in the finale. How can Nick be in the bottom 4 times and win the entire show. Tom clearly makes the final decision because the other judges clearly liked Ninas food better. Great season but the finale was very disappointing
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  2. #22
    FORT Newbie madlyophelia's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by AWfielder View Post
    As an audience in life, on stage, in Washington, or the big screen, America loves a good comeback and a second act....Even though Nick wasn't that popular here on the forum or on Bravo's instant polls, he is the American story. Picking himself up after he repeatedly fell on his tail, finding that strength to keep pressing on despite the experts suggesting he resign, and believing in himself while spending most of the season in the bottom three inspires me.
    Very eloquently put. While one could argue that, like many dramatic heroes, Nick is flawed, I do not consider someone who continually blames others for technical problems (moving pots, changing an oven's settings, taking things from him) as the quintessential American story of a comeback.

    A far better example would be Kristen Kish, who fought her way back after taking responsibility for her team's loss. Nick was the antithesis. I watched Andy Cohen's post-finale show and heard Tom's explanations, especially the one about whether the judges thought Nick should give up his immunity when the team loss could be laid squarely at his doorstep, and the chef with the best dish of the day was told to pick her knives. Tom stated that they merely "asked" Nick whether he thought he should give up his immunity. He personally did not believe he should. Even without seeing the unedited version, I truly doubt that Jacques Pepin agreed. He is very Old School, and it was very clear he thought Nick should take responsibility.

    Just looking at Padma's face, as she announced he won, fully encapsulated the wrong that had been done.
    Last edited by madlyophelia; 02-07-2014 at 01:46 PM.
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  3. #23
    Magical Elf MFWalkoff's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by AWfielder View Post
    As has been the case throughout this season, I've felt many on the forum found Nick lacking talent and professionalism and agreed with most Nina was destined for the title. Like Peyton Manning discovered last Sunday and all the oddsmakers betting on AMERICAN HUSTLE for the Oscar might discover in a couple weeks, it ain't over till it's over. Nina is going to have an amazing career and deserves to. However, throughout this whole season, Nick has had my total support from the gate. I just really liked his mixture of strengths and weaknesses, his balance of failures and successes, and those little glimpses of who he was out of the kitchen. When his wife and mom showed up for the pre game dinner, I was totally moved and felt the emotion right through the TV screen. When he lost it over the flaky servers on the big night of his life and screamed like a kid heard in the dining room, I recognized a personality I'd come to know the last few months. Not Nick at his best, but the real deal. I felt the bond of mutual respect between Nina and Nick that was special and genuine. As an audience in life, on stage, in Washington, or the big screen, America loves a good comeback and a second act. Nina was the favorite all season long. She earned that status through her great cooking and consistent professionalism. Even though Nick wasn't that popular here on the forum or on Bravo's instant polls, he is the American story. Picking himself up after he repeatedly fell on his tail, finding that strength to keep pressing on despite the experts suggesting he resign, and believing in himself while spending most of the season in the bottom three inspires me. I applaud his win and felt it lifted reality TV to something better than bachelorettes and toy dogs in purses en route to the beauty parlor. It said with a lot of hard work and faith, we can all be our own personal top at what we love and apply ourselves to.
    Agreed on American Hustle -- it's probably the most overrated film of the year, and 12 Years a Slave will end up winning because it fits the profile of the kind of film Hollywood honors to feel better about itself. Like the year Crash beat Brokeback Mountain, even though Ang Lee won Best Director.

    As for Nick, he does represent the older, quasi-traditional idea of the American success story: relentless pursuit of success at all costs, even while sometimes forgetting who you are in the process, and generally in need of mood stabalizers as a result.

    Nina would have been a better representative for the franchise, but Tom clings to judging the finale based solely on the final meal. Sometimes this method works to the show's benefit, and sometimes it doesn't.
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  4. #24
    FORT Fogey mesachick's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    I didn't have a problem with Nick winning. A lot of the judges said that one of his courses (I can't remember which off the top of my head) was their favorite course of the night, so I can see how he won. I think Nina may have lost it by trying to do too much and not having a real dessert course.

    Funny - as much as Tom was campaigning for Nick, Padma could barely disguise her disdain for him. Very unprofessional I thought. I've seen her roll her eyes, make ugly faces, etc when discussing Nick. I kept waiting for her to barely eek a smile when she crowned him the winner lol.
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  5. #25
    FORT Fogey TripleGemini's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by madlyophelia View Post
    <snip> I watched Andy Cohen's post-finale show and heard Tom's explanations, especially the one about whether the judges thought Nick should give up his immunity when the team loss could be laid squarely at his doorstep, and the chef with the best dish of the day was told to pick her knives. Tom stated that they merely "asked" Nick whether he thought he should give up his immunity. He personally did not believe he should. Even without seeing the unedited version, I truly doubt that Jacques Pepin agreed. He is very Old School, and it was very clear he thought Nick should take responsibility.
    Tom seemed to forget that when the judges were talking, he said, "I hope Nick falls on his sword."
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  6. #26
    FORT Fogey ryansmommy's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by MFWalkoff View Post
    ... Tom clings to judging the finale based solely on the final meal ...
    From my point of view, they all do. Anyway, Gail Simmons summed up the finale pretty much this way:

    Nina won her first two courses and lost the second two. Nick lost the first two courses and won the last two.

    With that said, Nina's errors were greater in magnitude than Nick's and why he won and she lost. Specifically, Nina's third (main) course was weaker than Nick's first course blunder and her forth (dessert course), although executed flawlessly, was perceived as a throw away in that the dish was conceptually flawed.

    Finally, Gail pondered, as Nina did, that not presenting the additional two courses would have allowed opportunity to focus on the courses that truly mattered as the extra credit didn't bump up Nina's flawed third and fourth courses.

    (Paraphrased taken from Gail: There Was No Season 11 Underdog | Gail Simmons | Top Chef Blog)

  7. #27
    FORT Newbie madlyophelia's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by TripleGemini View Post
    Tom seemed to forget that when the judges were talking, he said, "I hope Nick falls on his sword."
    That's too funny. I forgot that is what Tom actually said. Too bad he is allowed to revise broadcast history and no one present could call him on it.
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  8. #28
    FORT Fan rebotco's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by provenceguy View Post
    Nina? How awesome is that? Lovely lady--as are Shirley and Stephanie, in my book.
    On WWHL, Nina thought the fans would choose either Shirley or Stephanie. The 3 of them were my favorites, too.

  9. #29
    FORT Regular AWfielder's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    It was fun watching those judges square off and one could cut the tension in the air between Padma and Tom with an unpacked knife. It was like Tom decreed Nick's win by executive order much to Padma's disapproval and dismay. So true that Nina's extra credit did nothing to help her case and there is a TOP CHEF rule of the road after 11 seasons. Be careful and considered before plating a dessert. It's the last thing they remember and their favorite menu item to trash. Nina's ship started taking on water when she forgot the groceries she needed for her chosen dessert and went with a last minute substitute. We'll never know how it tasted but it looked like three chocolate donut holes from Dunkin Donuts with a little vanilla dipping sauce. Perhaps a serviceable improvisation but certainly not a grand finale.
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  10. #30
    Forum Assistant Arielflies's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 2/5 Finale Show Discussion

    Nina's desert plan fell apart when they had already bought the ingredients and then discovered the kitchen did not have an ice cream machine. They didn't have time to go to the supply store and buy one, I guess. She had to work with what she had, and we'll never know how her desert would have turned out with ice cream as an ingredient.
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