Double Trouble

By: Grant Dudley
Finalist Justin Davis

FNS7 Episode 2 Elimination

FNS7 Episode 2 Finalist Justin Davis in Evaluation.

Photo by: Edward Chen/Creel Films ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Edward Chen/Creel Films, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Were you surprised by last night’s double elimination curve ball? I certainly was. Bob and Susie are tricksters, aren’t they? But, let me tell you: I was not surprised that of all the finalists, Juba and Katy were the two sent packing.

Juba was waaaaay out of his element. I was stunned to see how stunned HE was at his elimination. Really, Juba? How that came as a shock to him I'll never know. As I told you last week, his performances left me very uncomfortable and with a blanket over my head.

And, Katy – look, she wasn’t good on camera. I get that. However, she is someone who puts on a brave face in the midst of adversity. Though her “grin and bear it” attitude came off as impersonal to the judges, I felt for her and understood her. And she fought back tears, which made me really respect her. I’m not a fan of tears on this show. Katy could serve as an example to other finalists (um, Alicia).

OK. Penny. I took heat last week for praising her, but today I admit it: I did not like how she turned on Orchid. How anyone could start a ruckus with that sweet woman is beyond me. Though I still enjoy Penny’s straightforward and honest way of tackling this competition, I didn’t like how she singled out Orchid. But, the thing is, she was very well aware of what Penny was doing. Again, with Penny, there is no question where you stand with her. At least Orchid knew what (who) she should watch out for.

Justin D. wears bow ties and so do I. I like this guy because of that. I know I should probably have more than just his attire to base my opinion on, but that’s all I got and I’m sticking to it. Jyll with a “y” did very well in this episode. But, for some reason, her personality isn’t resonating with me. She’s flying a bit under my radar. And more than anything, that “y” is really starting to bother me. Whitney needs to liven up. I understand that she’s a former engineer and still has that “engineer focus,” but she’s on TV now – and we’re not here to watch paint dry. Warm up a bit, Whit.

Oh, before I forget – Jeff’s sweating into his food. Wow. That made me a bit nauseous. Giada seemed horrified and rightly so. Thankfully, he got it together in the second challenge and I feel certain he won’t be without a headband in the future. Actually, a headband could be part of his shtick.

Finally, I thought Mary Beth was the true star of this episode. The judges’ comments last week really motivated her to bring her best. She was engaging and very funny. Simon Cowell is always talking about talent with the “it factor.” I’m not exactly sure what the “it” is, but in my opinion, she has “it.”

Till next week.

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