So according to Matty P, these rats are doing what all Australian diners should be doing: eating trash. That’s right fresh produce lovers, it’s Mystery Box time and cooking with crap is the new black!
The lid comes off and the contestants, predictably, have mixed reactions. Cassie is scared – she’s used to producing little gels and foams and has no fucking idea how to turn a bunch of fish heads and some old banana into something edible. Nick, on the other hand, is super confident. He thinks cooking with refuse is the best thing since fart-proof bloomers and he’s looking forward to impressing the judges and testing their gag reflexes.
Cameron, the man who talks like he’s already got a mouthful of garbage, is also happy. He reckons he worked in a restaurant in london where all the chefs had to make their staff meals out of bin scraps. I’m inclined to think the head chef just couldn’t stand him and that this was his gentle way of getting the fat-tongued git out of his kitchen.
Ah but it’s fun to watch and there’s all kinds of repulsive-looking latrine-fodder being flung together. The pressure of turning this fuckery into fine dining is starting to test some of the contestants’ sanity and Nick cracks at the final hurdle and by throwing an old banana in his aioli and earning a place on Marco’s Top Ten Worst Things I Have Ever Eaten list.
The sheer lunacy continues with our Spanish Senor Luke getting all teary as he reminisces about eating trash as a child. He tells the judges about the ‘pretend’ chicken sandwich – basically a sack of crap between two other sacks of crap – that ‘tasted like chicken’ because he was permanently cracked-out. Or had a good imagination – whatever. He’s clearly hoping the judges will play pretend with his own dish because, unfortunately for our frizzy-haired friend, it looks like something you’d show to a dermatologist, not a food critic. Marco confirms my belief when he proceeds to compliment Luke on his story, not his food.
Cassie and Cameron’s dishes both still look like what they found under the mystery box lid, but Cameron’s has the misfortune of a slightly foamy-looking beige sauce that genuinely looks like it has been freshly regurgitated by a hummus-eating dog, and he’s bound for the elimination cook-off.
And he’s joined by Michael – the only one who managed to plate up something that actually looks WORSE than the original garbage. It’s some sort of pale sausage nugget swimming in a pool of its own puke. He’s even put little chunks in there. If this was a prize for dish-that-looks-most-like-one-of-those-plastic-spew-gags, he would win hands, feet and testicles down. Marco describes the taste of the sausage as ‘peculiar’. Matt has a taste and his head makes a sudden, but ultimately unsuccessful, break for freedom. He looks like a man who plans to spend the remainder of the night pouring bleach down his own throat.
Skip to the next day and the boys are on their way to face-off. Turns out they are in for a collossal rogering Masterchef-style with 120 guests expecting a three-course meal. That’s right, kiddies, both Cam and Michael have to plan, prep and serve 3 courses to a bunch of strangers who you just KNOW have been told to whinge their tits off.
Thankfully for our boys they get to use actual food, not whatever they can scrape off a bucket of used dentures, and they head for the pantry. And it’s relatively friendly – apparently these two get along and there’s no squabbling over ingredients and everyone seems happy – except for the producers who you just know are always hoping for a shank-fight over cocktail sauce.
Marco’s running the kitchen and, yet again, he talks about once upon a time making Gordon Ramsey cry. Personally, I couldn’t give a fuck. Gordon Ramsey looks like the kind of man who sobs quietly after sex and expects to be cuddled. I’m convinced he’s the kind of bully who’d lay a foul tongue on his grandmother and then cry into his gravy when the clever bitch leaves him a single finger in her will.
Anyhoo, the pressure’s on to get the entree out and both of our culinary heros are putting their backs in it. As per usual the smug bastards on the balcony are shouting down instructions. At one point Coop calls down a particularly useful tip about turning the oven on and Cam tells him to SHUT UP! Family-man Coop looks like he just got an ice-cold cum-shot to the eyeball and the rest of the contestants give the old meanie downstairs the look my mother usually reserves for tattooed women. Rico agrees with Cam and says if he was on the balcony he’d knee that toothy fucker SOLID in the sweaty sacks just for being an annoying pratt.
But service is starting and here come the entrees! In a startling display of originality, both boys have produced… seafood salad. Cam is happy to just slap it on the plate, but Michael gets his pubes all twisty by trying to make sure all his plates look pretty. Matty P, seated at a table with two women of unknown expertise, stifles a yawn in his cravat and declares Michael’s prawn salad the winner.
Mains get going and Cam’s in trouble: despite declaring he was aiming for ‘medium to medium rare’ his steaks are so blue they leave hoof marks on the diners. In typical Cam-style, however, he refuses to acknowlege it was either a poor strategy or a genuine cock-up, and declares he likes his food to MOVE. Michael’s lamb – lacking in beetroot though it is – wins by default.
And on to dessert. Again, Michael’s faffing around with blow torches and crumbs and other utterly pretentious fuckery, while Cam has squirted some panna cotta in glass and is sitting back filing his foreskin. That is until the ‘hero music’ starts up and Cam realises the producers are prompting him to show his good side and give Mr Prissy Pants a helping hand. At this point, after serving a milky salad and sending a herd of cattle through the dining hall, he’s probably thinking this show of goodwill might just float his ass to safety.
He’s wrong. His reward for saving Michael from looking like an ubertard is a map to the exit and a warm handshake from Marco who we just KNOW has spent the break on the porcelain.
The last time we see Cameron he has draped himself in his best pimpin’ duds and is heading out into Masterchef back alley.
I have to admit, one thing I love about this show is that, unlike others where they send kicked out contestants away in limos or show them being fought over by red-headed family members, Masterchef makes them do the walk of shame past the other unwanted crap to remind viewers that, when you lose, not only don’t you win, YOU LOSE!