There's one week left until we find out who the next Top Chef will be, but on Part 1 of the finale, fans were dismayed by who it won't be.
Worst finale ever. #TopChef— Cynthia Coomes (@CynthiaCoomes) March 11, 2016
To bring you up to speed: Marjorie, Jeremy and Isaac were dubbed the final three cheftestants. On Thursday's episode, we learned that Amar won Last Chance Kitchen, meaning he has another chance to compete for the Top Chef title, and after Marjorie and Isaac were eliminated, it will be Jeremy vs. Amar in the season finale.
Only three women in the history of Top Chef have won it all, and many fans (including me) were hoping Marjorie would be the fourth. It's a disappointment to see two men competing yet again for the title, and it definitely reinforces the terrible reality that if you don't create an equal balance of male and female contestants, it makes it less likely that a woman will win. There's no lack of talented women chefs out there, but as I wrote a few weeks ago, we know that the conditions for women in kitchens are made deeply unpleasant by sexism, and if Top Chef doesn't make an effort to make sure women get on the show, we're going to keep seeing men competing against each other in finale after finale, while all the women on the show end up getting eliminated earlier.
Fans on Twitter weren't shy about expressing their discontent about how things ended up on Thursday.
MARJORIE SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN THE FINALS. ALL CAPS!!! I'M SCREAMING THIS AT YOU. ARGH!!!! #topchef— ThePessimistOptimist (@PessOpti) March 11, 2016
Noooooooooooo Marjorie! #TopChef— Nicole Grossberg (@Nicole_Gberg) March 11, 2016
The match up for the #TopChef finale doesn't feel like it's the two best chefs of the season, IMO.— Rachel Gruber (@rachgrub) March 11, 2016
Waaaattttt?? No Marjory?? Well I'm not watching the finale. #TopChef— annaleigh christie (@annaleighsays) March 11, 2016
well! I have absolutely no interest in watching the #topchef finale now.— Roxana Hadadi (@roxana_hadadi) March 11, 2016
When Karen was eliminated a few weeks ago, we were reminded that it's the dish that the judges are reacting to and not the chef (most of the time). Marjorie has proven herself over and over this season to be a major culinary force. The fact that she won't win Top Chef doesn't negate that, and at the same time, for those of us who were rooting for her, it's a disappointment not to see her take on Jeremy, Amar or Isaac. Jeremy's won many challenges this season and Amar just fought his way back to the show from Last Chance Kitchen, but this isn't all about whether or not they deserve to be there. The point is, when the deck is stacked against women, as it has been this season and in previous seasons, we just aren't likely to see women winning the Top Chef title. It is possible to change that, with more pointed and strategic casting, so that the future doesn't have to look so much like the past and present.
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