A few quick thoughts on the next-to-last “Top Chef” of the season coming up just as soon as I make myself throw up…
At first, I’d been assuming there would be another kitchen mishap or something that would extend the finale to next week. Instead, it just turned out they’re doing a Top 2 show rather than a Top 3 (which has made this sojourn in the Bahamas, which began with an extra contestant because of the uniform awesomeness of the Ellis Island challenge, feel really long).
After a Quickfire where Blais consistently overthought things and made things easy on Mike, we got an Elimination Challenge that didn’t seem like the most fair contest this late in the game. Again, my philosophy is that at this point in the season, you just want to step back and let the chefs cook with minimal constraints, and here Antonia and Richard were both asked to cook in styles where they didn’t have a ton of experience, while Mike had to make… fried chicken. Fortunately, Mike was the one who got too cute in this round, giving Richard a clear win, but Antonia was so hamstrung that she likely would have gone home even without the additional “one bite” challenge.
In the end, though I don’t like Mike, he’s been clearly better than Antonia for a while, and he may be in Richard’s delicate head enough to pull out the win next week. And for the purposes of drama, if not selecting the two best technical chefs of the field, I suppose it’s more interesting that the season has come down to a heavy favorite versus something of an underdog.
So as we head into the final episode, what did everybody think of both last night’s episode and this season as a whole so far?