Top Chef whipped up its first episode of the new season and it was hearty and robust with just a hint of spice! This time around the show is based in Las Vegas and the producers are using that as an excuse to add some twists to each round.
I'm not sure I'm happy about this as these side contests are making it more of a game show and less of a cooking competition. After all, that is what Top Chef is all about, no?
For example, while drawing teams last night, one chef pulled a gold poker chip which gave her a pass on the game and immunity from elimination. But -(shade of Let's Make a Deal) she could give up the immunity for a shot at $15,000 in a mini Quick Fire Challenge.
The main challenge was, supposed to, revolve around vices -- this is Sin City after all. While most of the contestants went with their love of strong drink, others clearly missed the concept.
Like the fellow who came to America as a boat refugee, his fish dish was to honor his vice of not being able to get over the fact that he had to survive on nothing but fish for 27 days. Huh?
At this stage of the Top Chef game, it really doesn't matter. We're not attached to anyone yet, so who stays or goes is no big deal. Give me three weeks and I'll have plenty to say about who packs their knives and goes.
America's Got Talent had an elimination round last night and it was a bit of a surprise. Manic piano player Jeffrey Ou won out over Bri which left Sharon Osbourne, and much of the audience, speechless. Lawrence Beaman also advanced, which was a surprise to me. Mario & Jenny were a given, but my favorite act Marcus and the Serenades were sent home. Contortionist / break-dancer Hairo Torres makes it through beating U4RIA. Then it was the Pixies against the Footworkingz in the judges choice spot. For once, they didn't even need the tie-breaking vote. They all voted for Footworkingz and the Pixies were wished into Sharon's garden where they can play and dance all day.
For those of you who watched Toddlers and Tiaras last night, check out how the grown-ups do it. NBC is streaming the first two and a half hours of the Miss Universe Pageant exclusively on their website. This is the preliminary portion of the contest where nearly 100 contestants compete to hopes of making it into the top 15. From Albania to Zambia and not one girl from Mars, sounds like they should change the name to Miss Earth instead of Miss Universe.
Watch the Miss Universe Pageant finals August 23 on NBC.
Tonight's top TV picks:
Project Runway begins with a face-off between some of our favorites of past seasons, then we'll meet the new designers out for the ultimate prize and finally, the cameras will switch sides for a look at the competition from the models POV.
8:00 pm -- Project Runway All-Star Challenge
9:00 pm -- Project Runway: the new season begins
11:00 pm -- Models of the Runway
That's three and a half hours of new Project Runway! I know it's a lot for one night, but Tim Gunn and I are confident that you can make it work.
ABC is in development on a TV series version of the new movie The Time Traveler's Wife, which is, of course, based on a best selling novel of the same name.
Cheers star Shelley Long has joined the cast of Modern Family.
Firefly's Gina Torres has joined Gossip Girl.
Whitney Houston will be Oprah's first guest when her show returns on September 14.
Top Chef: Las Vegas -- Pictured: Jesse -- Bravo Photo: Trae Patton
Project Runway -- Pictured: Tim Gunn with Contestant. Photo Credit: Mike Yarish/Lifetime Networks, 2009
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