Masterchef Canada Recap, episode 2: “That’s one messy orgasm”
Last week’s premiere of Masterchef Canada was in lockstep with the signature style of the franchise: hone in on emotional back stories, manufacture dramatic moments and, if there’s time, do some cooking. Naturally, episode two delivered more of the same, but with even more ridiculous behaviour from the local judges, who stayed true to their on-screen stereotypes: Alvin Leung, the unnecessarily cruel chef; Michael Bonacini, the overly-keen father-figure; and Claudio Aprile, the practical businessman.
Here, our rundown of the best and the worst of episode two.
We were looking forward to kicking off with some intense kitchen action, but episode two instead began with a mash-up of more auditions. When the elimination challenge finally came, it was a bit of a snooze: contestants had to create a dish with one chicken, one burner, one pan and one hour. The challenge could have been exciting had the contestants wowed, but the creativity was underwhelming. Dishes included a chicken sandwich, chopped chicken liver and not one, but two involtini.
One exciting moment came when Leung held up a flapping chicken, and we could feel fear emanating off contestants who thought they were going to have to kill the thing. They didn’t, and it was a shame—a bit of blood might have spiced up the challenge. The elimination portion of the evening was longer than the challenge itself, as the judges pitted groups against one another in a clear-as-day effort to elicit the highest possible amount of tension. At the end of the episode, though, we got our first glimpse of the 16 contestants that will compete for the rest of the series. They’re pictured above.
Danny Raposo—a rough-around-the-edges high-rise construction worker from Brampton—is shaping up to be a crowd favourite. He shows the audience that it’s not the dish that’s important, it’s the enthusiasm of the support system. Rife with expletives, his audition featured a signature dish of chorizo on rice with beer-mustard sauce. He blew the sauce, and the final product was served without it. The judges were split. Aprile brought in Raposo’s family, all sporting “Team Danny” t-shirts, to make the final decision. Obviously, they granted him a white apron.
Meghan’s roasted lamb chop with mint gremolata was the only audition dish we deemed restaurant quality this time around. She describes her profession as “former cheerleader,” and appears ready to give dead-eye Dale Kuda, the self-professed Gay Martha Stewart of Canada, some competition in the sass department. After being selected as one of the 16 keepers at the end of the episode, she maliciously proclaimed that everyone else is next on her chopping block.
Dora the plumber—whose twitter handle is amazingly @DoraTheDistroya—hid her nerves a bit better than in episode one, with nary a crying fit to be seen. Dora and Danny were saved for last and pitted against each other in the elimination round. They sweetly grasped hands during the final announcement, and in a not-so-surprising twist with an unnecessarily long fake-out (“we wish we could keep you both, but….”), they were both able to stay.
The only upsetting elimination of the evening was sweet John Ching Yin Leung, whose dream is to open a food truck in Calgary. In the elimination challenge, his lemon pan-roasted chicken was undercooked, and the outcome was aptly foreshadowed by his nervous gulp as he was called forward. Based on other cooking errors on the show that have gone unpunished, we wouldn’t necessarily assume raw chicken to spell disaster. In this case, however, it did. Don’t worry, John—this new reality cooking show seems more up your alley, anyway.
AND THE AWKWARDNESS AWARD GOES TO…
Alvin Leung, again. No cringeworthy Bonacini phrases can compare to when when Leung, responding to a contestant’s comparison of her dish to an orgasm, stated plainly, “that’s one messy orgasm.” After last week’s musing about what Dale is hiding under his bright green pants, we can only hope the demon chef will regale us with more awkward pseudo-sexual comments as the season heats up.