'Hell's Kitchen' recap: It's time to ditch the dead weight

Another week, another new twist served up in "Hell's Kitchen."

Cook for your life. Or, your chef's jacket.

Chef Ramsay defied expectations with last week's cliffhanger ending when he had four players lined up on the chopping block. He didn't eliminate them in one fell swoop. He didn't make them swap teams. Instead, he put them all on probation and gave them a shot at culinary redemption.

It added an element of tension, but were you hoping that Dan would fall short? He's Mr. Annoying, no doubt, but he's also Mr. Entertaining (in that he's fun to point at and laugh at.)

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Such as, when he's bragging on his Asian cooking skills because -- as he told everyone who would listen -- he lived in Asia for a year. "I can't [BLEEP] this up," he vows, promising to demolish the challenge.

Except that he then went on to, um, undercook his rice.

Can't make that stuff up, folks!

Here we move into the "thinning the herd" weeks, where the dead weight gets dropped and a star (or three) arise.

So perhaps we need the Dans and the Nedras of the world around, for comic relief. (Nedra ranks second only to Chef Ramsay for potty-mouth one-liners that cannot be quoted in full.)

In other developments, we learned:

-- We already knew that Martin "Yan Can Cook!" But who knew he was so entertaining? Thumbs up.

-- You get "ridiculous errors" from someone with ridiculous sideburns. Barret is spending so much time sculpting his facial hair that he doesn't have time to pay attention to stuff like cooking and serving fish with paper still attached to it.

-- Jessica truly couldn't handle the heat. She wasn't just like a deer caught in the headlights of a truck being driven by chef. She looked like a really sad deer lost in aisle three of the grocery store, looking for mommy.

-- The trickery never ends. Weren't viewers were given the impression in last week's previews that this week's dinner service is so bad that director Adam Shankman walks out of "Hell's Kitchen," presumably with an empty stomach? What gives?

All the joking aside about Dan (and the considerable amount of restraint it takes not to remark on those cute ears) we have to give credit where it is due. Chef paid him one of the biggest compliments so far this season: "You can cook." Except rice? 


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