Monday, July 01, 2013

HGTV Star and Food Network Star! A Recap and Rant...Part Four

HGTV STAR!!! “Real Life” Clients!! Again!!!
This week, once again, our designtestants are given, ahem, “real life” clients. I say “real life” because they are being tasked with designing kitchens and dining rooms, but the cabinets and flooring and appliances are already picked out, and the kitchen layouts will remain the same as they were pre-redesign.

So, it isn’t design, it’s install; and maybe paint and put up a drape and set out some canisters. Oh, but, be still my heart, the designers are told that they will be allowed to pick a sink and faucet; I mean, if it’s by Kohler™, of course.

The final six are divided into teams of three, and get help from two carpenters. So, let’s rip ‘em a new one ….

Brooks, Abby and Anne are tasked with designing a warm and modern kitchen and they come up with beige; oh, sorry Anne, it’s Taupe-y Gray, sorry. Anne took charge this week because, as she said, this was her element. I took that to mean Anne would be going home, but the producers at HGTV Star! threw a curveball at me.

Abby kept mumbling about how this wasn’t her ‘thing’ and how she could make drapes. Makes me long from HGTV Drapestar!

Brooks’ additions were to paint the wooden vaulted ceiling white; it was a smart move because it really made the room seem larger. His dumb move was to do some 60s Jetson countertop that looked like a throwback, or a throw-up, from the olden times.

But, oh for the love of ‘but’, Brooks scores major points for buying a great sink. HGTV Sinkstar! And since the judges were less than thrilled with Abby’s beige-on-beige-one-beige countertop and backsplash, I’m guessing the upcoming season of Project Beigestar! is on hold.

What isn’t on hold, I’m guessing, is HGTV Tablesettings! because the judges just loved the plates and flowers and candles Anne set out on the dining table. So much so, that Anne wins this week.

For.Setting.A.Table. And picking taupe-y grey.

Their, ahem, “real life” clients want a warm—isn’t that to be expected—and inviting kitchen; I, myself, prefer the cold and Get The Hell Outta Here kitchen, but I digress.

Jeribai, who has yet to win a challenge, decides that he will do the impossible, at least for HGVT Star! He’ll do a tile backsplash and get it done! “It was the best backsplash I have ever seen done on the show,” Vern said. “It was executed to perfection and looked great with the cabinets.”  Hold the phone, y’all! Maybe Project Backsplash! will be on next season, with Vern Yip traveling the country in a minivan, marveling at well-executed tiled walls. Set.My.DVR.

Tiffany and Boris focused on the dining room, where Tiffany put in a metal table. Nothing says warm and inviting like a surgical table for two. But, Boris decided to go for the warm by picking a lovely grass-cloth wallpaper; I’ll give him points for using it because it did cover up the 60s paneling that was in the room.

Boris also took down the couple's corner cabinet liquor storage—a must for a home with children—and replaced that with floating shelves that were too short to actually hold wine bottles; the bottles ended up looking like they were supporting the shelf above.

The Goiter chided Jeribai for fumbling his words in his Camera Challenge—something she does nearly constantly—but saved him because of the brilliant tile-work.

Vern loved the way Tiffany called the hardware on the cabinets the ‘jewelry’ which proves he doesn’t watch his own network because every single designer on the channel calls the hardware jewelry. Seriously, Vern, step up. Or at least stand up, child, we can hardly see you at the Big Boy Table. She’s safe.

Boris listens to The Goiter say, “I was … immediately honed into this beautiful sink” as if it was the Second Coming, or something. He’s safe. Jeribai doesn’t win, but putting up tile guarantees him the chance at having his show not produced by HGTV.

Anne, like I said, wins for setting a table—something I do every night—and for taupe-y grey. Boris gets saved for a dazzling wallpaper choice.

Abby goes home because she put herbs in a plastic planter box in the dining room.

Howsabout less of these phony “real client” challenges because you just know that, since everything but the kitchen sink was already chosen, what kind of design was really done?

And howsabout less of these team challenges? If someone wins and actually gets their show on TV they are not going to be working in teams, so let them work individually with real clients and see what they do.

Have someone surgically remove the marbles from The Goiter’s mouth and then have them surgically reduce the size of Boris’ mouth; it still looks like he’s gonna eat someone.

What’s a Sabrina Soto? She’s the one who seemed the most real this week because she said, of Tiffany’s metal table, “I’m pretty sure I’ve gotten a pap smear on that table before.”

The most real moment in a completely phony episode.

We have ate chef-wannabes left and this week’s Mentor Challenge is the one where they appear on ‘live’ TV to cook sausage and peppers and then something crazy happens. No, silly, they don’t actually cook! The producers throw ‘em a curveball and see how they recover. Let’s rip ….

Viet: His curveball was that the sausage and peppers went missing. His reaction? Standing still and saying over and over and over and, yes, one more, over again, ‘Where are the peppers?’ Fail.
Russell: The lights went out on Russell’s appearance but he just kept going. I wonder if sausages and peppers in the dark is any good?
Stacey: Someone.Took.Her.Whisk! Um, yeah, so she used a fork. Big deal; millions of people in this country don’t have whisks and they all use forks.
Chad: The host, Terrence Jenkins from E! began coughing. He kinda stopped; maybe he was waiting to see if he needed to Heimlich the guy? I would’a like to see Chad lip-lock a dude, even if it wasn’t me.
Damaris: The set started falling apart on her, but she blamed it on poltergeists. Good save.
Nikki: As she cooked, the fire alarm went off, so she stood there. Arms folded. Um, Nikki? You’re supposed to march out of the building in single file to a safe place on the other side of the football field. I learned that in grade school!
Chris: Jenkins spilled the oil. Chris talked louder and louder. My head began to hurt.
Rodney: His curveball was being rushed for time, but he didn’t mumble or stumble or fumble. Rodney wins! For not mumbling.

The Star Challenge: to do a ‘live’ show featuring all thing foodie and Independence Day. As the winner of the Mentor Challenge, Rodney picks which food he’ll serve up—desserts, of course—and then gets to assign the others. Let’s rip … again ….
Viet: He was given Chips and Dips, and seemed kind of offended, so you know he’ll blow it. And blow he did, when a ‘live’ caller asked about three great dips to serve—I shrieked salsa, hummus and guacamole—and Vern stammered, um, yeah, three dips. Backstage, Giada also shrieked salsa, hummus and guacamole, so you know Viet—and let me say this, he is just the most adorable thing ever—would be in danger of leaving. His Crab Dip was as waterlogged as his performance.
Russell: He didn’t make sense when talking about Potato Salad, and seemed totally lost until Alton Brown—on whom I also have a wee culinary crush—asked him to ‘throw it to commercial.’ Then he came to life, for one bri3ef shining moment. His salad looked like mashed potato salad; not a good thing to eat cold.
Stacey: She was told to butcher, and she did everything but; by that I mean, while she butchered meat expertly, she did not butcher her segment. She came off good, though her pork was overcooked; her sauces, though, saved her, but her being good, AKA perfect and too professional because that’s a bad thing, were not good. Huh?
Chad: Poor Chad—The Hot Grill Man—was given veggies, but turned it around to a Veggie Cheese-steak thing. The downside, while he was outside grilling with the allegedly famous Farmer Lee, he kinda failed to introduce the man. His veggie dee-lights dee-lighted the judges.
Damaris: Rodney sends Damaris to the Bar, where she proceeds, I think, to get hammered and act all giggly like she just don’t care. She got points because the judges will able to get their drank on and they liked it.
Nikki: Nikki—you know, who doesn’t do meat—gets Fried Chicken, and the proceeds to say it’ll be so good, you’ll only need one piece and then you can move on to the veggies. She’s perky and giddy and girly, all annoying. Her chicken, while small because it’s meat and meat sucks, y’all, scored with the judges.
Chris: He was given Cole Slaw and well, yeah, it’s Cole Slaw. Points for toning down his loudness, though. Points off for slimy Cole Slaw; hint: roasted peppers are slimy.
Rodney: Rodney made some Meringue dessert, but returned to the mumbling and rumbling and fumbling, and then said the word ‘suckers’ twice, even though he wasn’t doing anything with candy.

Stacey wins for being good and professional, though a bit too good and too professional. They actually told her they needed her to make a mistake or two. Huh? What? Huh?

The Bottom Two are Russell and Viet, both for being bad on camera and for making really bad cold mushy food.

In the end, Viet went home. I felt bad because he seemed like an innovative chef, and he was every which way adorable, but he couldn’t master his confidence on camera.

This is how Design Star! should run.

Let the designers each design their own thing and then be judged on it.

They didn’t ask everyone on Food Network Star! to make the same dish, so you got to see some creativity that is sorely lacking on DS Star!


the dogs' mother said...

How does one change the bulbs in the chandelier in Brooks, Abby and Anne dining room??

It's embarrassing to listen to them praise the very easy selection of sink confined to just one company.

Abby kept saying this and that was not her thing and she'd never done whatever before - makes you wonder how the heck she got on the show?
(Oh. sewing)

The secret curve ball was a bit unfair as you know all sorts of crap happens when they film the actual show and they've been told to hold and wait until some glitch gets fixed.

viktor kerney said...

you should be a guest judge