Thursday, September 22, 2005

The New TV Show Review Challenge: Kitchen Confidential

FOX's Kitchen Confidential, based on the book by Anthony Bourdain, is a smart, funny show with the culinary world as its backdrop. It shows a lot of potential, and could become FOX's next great comedy.

The show revolves around bad boy chef Jack Bourdain, played by Bradley Cooper. After years of drugs and sleeping around, one incident costs Jack his career. He went from being a well-known, well-respected chef to a cook working at a cheesy family restaurant. Then, he gets the call he's been waiting for from a man named Pino (guest star Frank Langella) who is reopening his restaurant Nolita. He becomes head chef of the restaurant but gets less than two days to assemble a brand-new crew. He lies and makes promises he can't keep in order to get his ragtag crew, which includes Steven (Owain Yeoman) as his sous chef. However, he finds some resistance in Tanya (Jaime King), the head of the waitstaff who is also Pino's daughter. She wanted Jack's position and the two of them square off. We get to see the hectic opening night of the restaurant where Steven gets his fingertip cut off and the crew frantically search for it as an influential food critic (and former flame of Jack) visits.

Kitchen Confidential has a great cast and some clever writing. The show has a fast, fun feel to it. FOX may have greenlighted a show like The War At Home, but every so often, someone there has the guts to greenlight a comedy that is almost too good for network TV. This show is the perfect companion for Arrested Development, one of the best comedies on television, but I hope that it doesn't become the second great FOX comedy that no one watches.

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