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'Top Chef': Lisa survives another week. Am I missing something?

Lisa Is it just me or have the judges lost their minds?

Wait, let me back up. I should say that I'm perfectly aware that the deal with "Top Chef" has always been that a single dish can send a contestant home, no matter how good their past work has been.

There was real fan outrage last season when Tre, long considered a surefire finalist, was sent packing early for several botched dishes -- including a particularly bad beet-cured salmon -- and in spite of multiple winning performances. In that instance, there was no one but Tre to send home.

So I wasn't totally surprised to see Dale, who had won several challenges and been a top three contender, get cut after a particularly bad showing. Scallops doused in butterscotch sauce.... I can see how that might not work so well. And he was executive chef for the all-important Restaurant Wars round. Always a risky move and all the more reason to cut him after a team failure.

However -- and this is a big however --  there was just as much reason, if not more, to get rid of Lisa. I've said plenty here about Lisa's inadequacies already. This time, she smoked her laksa to death -- I don't understand how that even happens -- and, again, failed to cook rice properly. What is this girl's deal with rice anyway? It's the first thing you learn to cook in culinary school right after you learn to chop up a potato. 

Does Dale really get no credit for his past successes while the judges turn a blind eye to week after week of Lisa's poorly executed dishes?

I need someone to explain this to me. I know I can't taste the dishes and maybe those butterscotch scallops really sent guest Chef Jose Andres into sugar shock, a total embarrassment for Dale in and of itself. But Lisa screwed up two big dishes, dishes that she knows how to make, dishes she said she has made repeatedly. Lisa has also found herself on the chopping block more times than most.

The worst part is there are online rumors swirling about -- SPOILER ALERT -- all three females in the finale. Please, please, please let it not be true. I'm cool with Stephanie. I'd even be OK with Antonia. But Lisa? Before Richard? Even before Spike? No, no, no!

Thoughts? I'm dying to hear a defense.

--Denise Martin

(Photo courtesy Bravo)

Comments () | Archives (82)

I completely agree. Lisa sucks. All she does is blame others for her lack of skill. I think that she burned her own rice and she realized she screwed up and had to blame someone else. If Richard got kicked out before Lisa, I would have to wonder if the judges really knew what they were talking about. Or is there something that they're not showing us on the show?

agreed. i thought she was going home for that rice...but surprisingly, she didnt.

I didn't have the opportunity to watch Top Chef last night, although I am an avid watcher.

Reading that Dale was cut was absolutely shocking! Lisa should have been sent home for poor sportsmanship last week after outing Andrew. That was the most underhanded thing I've seen done in all of the seasons combined. Aside from that she has a very poor attitude just as Dale said previously.

I have no doubt that Richard and Antonia should make it to the final. Stephanie iand Spike will just have to duke it out.

i think that Lisa not going home is a travesty. She is the least talented chef there, and the fact that judges have been giving her passes is totally inexcusable.
its like the judges are trying to make sure a female wins this year...Steffani is the only one who deserves to be in the final two with Rich. they are the only true talented chefs. Lisa should be dropped like a ton of bricks!!!!!!!

I'm pretty sure Stephanie has been flying under the radar and will easily make it to the finals. I also think Antonia has the chops to make it to the end but, unfortunately, as much as I love his innovation and laid back style, I think Richard's creativity is going to get him sent home in either of the next two episodes for an experiment that doesn't quite work.

Spike is the culinary equivalent of a used car salesman. Amusing to watch from a distance but I wouldn't want to get near him and definitely don't want to see him succeed.

Lisa? Gah. She has consistently underwhelmed the judges and me but luckily for her, she underwhelms just a teensy bit less on individual dishes than whomever has gotten axed in previous weeks. I wish Jennifer were still on, that was the week Lisa SHOULD have left. I would say there is no accounting for taste but I guess there is! (HA! Lame joke, sorry)

Uh, there's my unsolicited 2 cents. Caio.

How the ef does Lisa get to stay??

Buttersotch in anything but dessert is a risk. That said, why doesn't Dale get even a little bit of credit for trying something new and potentially innovative, even if it didn't turn out well? Occasionally, the chefs get credit for taking a risk with a dish, do they not? Why doesn't the risk of his dish outweigh the execution of Lisa's dishes which she's claimed to have made dozens of times?

Fundamentally, isn't the bigger problem the fact that dishes Lisa has made on numerous occasions were a mess while a far more risky application of Dales simply didn't turn out well?

I get that Dale was a one-note chef, and that eventually he'd be off the show, but at least that one note was in tune and on key.

Lisa? doesn't even belong in the kitchen.

Lisa is seriously terrible. I couldn't believe Dale got sent home (though he can really act like an petulant child-- he's great when he's with people he likes or respects, but he really gives up all self-control when he's around people he doesn't like. Not a very admirable quality).

Lisa's foibles with rice just make it clear that she can't hack it. She's benefited from others' mistakes time and time again, and is just overall s negative person. I'll be glad to see her go.

Oh, and one more thing about Lisa-- she said that she checked her rice every 8-10 minutes.....you really can't do that with rice. You have to check every few minutes, especially when there's so much activity in the kitchen. It's her own fault that her rice sucked.

There must have been some really interesting judges table sessions this season that didn't make it into the show; I would have loved ot hear more about what pushed Dale over the edge and saved Lisa, or how Nikki's peppers-and-onions fiasco didn't get her immediately eliminated.

Brandi, you nailed Spike. He's not super talented, but at the very least he's amusing. Lisa just enrages me.

But as you all have pointed out, at least we still have Stephanie and Richard to root for.

aaahhh dale got cut!! What are we doing to now!!!
Richard and Stephanie are clearly the last two that should battle head to head...

everybody else just needs to pack their knifes and go home already!!

Lisa is a terrible chef!

I have heard that they are keeping lisa around for the ratings. Dale was awesome and was one of the best along with richard and stephanie. Im done with top chef after last night. Im a culinary graduate and it's plain as day that they are not selecting the best chefs. I have no idea why spike and lisa are still around.

The whole world agrees with you. I also don't get it, is it just luck - really dumb dumb luck or what?!? I am sorry but I don't see any talent or even hard work to show talent from this girl. I don't even see any enterntainment value from her as well.

i was in shock when Dale got eliminated. i think he's a talented chef, albeit not an easy person to get along with. But to cut him without taking into account his past performances? And just because he messed up one dish? What about Lisa? she has been consistently in the bottom, and she messed up both dishes. i just can't believe what the judges were thinking. i might not watch the show anymore after this.

Lisa has a horrible attitude...much worse than Dale's. I can't stand her defensiveness. It was definitely time for her to go. But, the producers do have a say in who goes and who stays. Maybe they have reasons for keeping her.

We love to hate Lisa, which is the only reason they keep her around. We'll see her in every last episode pissing us off more than the week before. She sucks. She knows it. But she makes for great tv.

And btw, doesn't she look like Rosie O'Donnell's offspring? At least in the other shows the annoying one was nice to look at.

This travesty proves that the decisions are based on who will potentially bring more drama to the mix. Based on what we, the audience, saw, her two bad dishes should have trumped his one bad dish and poor leadership.
And dude, every time she takes that Angry Wrestler stance, I just have to look away.

Lisa has proven she can't even cook RICE! Two weeks in a row now! She is not a "Top Chef". To see Andrew and even Dale (although his time was coming) leave before her was just WRONG!!!

shes just sleeping around with the judges. oldest trick in the book

Lisa has been dodging bullets for weeks, but I agree with the decision the judges handed down last night.
Dale was the executive chef. He failed to supervise his crew and their work and allowed dishes to be served that were not palatable. One of his, two of Lisa's.
That said...Dale is a much better chef than Lisa.
Neither of them seem to be much fun to be around.
Lisa's only hope is for remaining chef's to continue to shoot themselves in the foot.

What about all the rumors that producers said a woman HAD to win this season? It isn't hard to do the "dumb production math" on this one. Dale is a threat. They feel like they have to have a woman win, so they take out the threats the second there's a chance to. It's just like last week with Andrew v.s. Lisa... Terrible that they're ruining this fantastic show with gender-rediculous politics.

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