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October 14, 2015

Dinner: Impossible enlists a new chef

by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 22nd 2008 10:01AM
Michael SymonFood Network has been smarting from the debacle involving Robert Irvine, the former host of Dinner: Impossible. Now, the other shoe has dropped in the kitchen. Food Network announced that Michael Symon will replace Chef Irvine on Dinner: Impossible. This should be a piece of cake -- ha, ha, food metaphor -- for Chef Symon. He has already competed for a major role at Food Network and won. He's one of the Iron Chefs, having defeated all challengers in last seasons on air contest.

Since that victory last summer, he has joined Mario Batali, Cat Cora, Bobby Flay and Masaharu Morimoto as a member of the home team on Iron Chef America. He's been cooking in Kitchen Stadium along with the rest of the gang.

Chef Symon owns the Lola and Lolita restaurants in Cleveland, Ohio, and is a graduate from The Culinary Institute of America. After the Food Network's experience with Chef Robert Irvine, it's safe to say that Michael Symon's resume has been fully vetted.

He is going to begin taping 10 new episodes this week and they'll start appearing this summer. They have also expanded the 30-minute episodes to an hour. In a statement about his new appointment, Chef Symon said, ``I'm really looking forward to the challenges that are going to be thrown my way and nothing gets me more pumped than someone telling me that something is 'impossible.'''

Dinner: Impossible is a really good premise. In every episode, the chef is presented with an assignment, given a limited budget and short time to execute the meal. There were shows with Irvine where he had to create a meal for a group in an ice hotel in Canada -- cooking under the worse conditions imaginable. Another episode sent him to a remote island in the Bahamas where two Survivor winners -- Ethan Zohn and Jenna Morasca -- were hosting a dinner that he had to prepare using just a few items in a crate and what the island could provide. To be honest, Robert Irvine was excellent on the show. Too bad he lied about his past and sullied the network's reputation. They really had no choice but to let him go.

It'll be interesting to see how Michael Symon handles the show now that he's at the helm.

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Celeste Hill

Please DO NOT Robert Irvine. Everyone makes mistakes. The entire country is run by people who not only made mistakes in their pasts, they continue to make mistakes now and yet people still vote for them. It would not surpirse me if everyone on the Food Network has either added information to or withheld information from their resumes. Why make Robert an example. It is not fair.

Dinner Impossible is one of the best shows on the Food Network. It is different - not your everyday humdrum preparing of a quick meal in the kitchen. Robert Irvine is fiery and exciting. He is very debonair and personable. Most of all, his culinary feats are phenomenal. I have no doubt that you will definitely lose viewers if you replace Robert Irvine. You will lose at least four viewers anyway, because my family and I will never watch the Food Network again if Robert goes.

June 12 2008 at 1:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's getting ridiculous that a TV personality is getting canned because of exaggerations on his resume. I tend to think almost every TV personality exaggerates on their resume, and considering Irvine was good on the show, why bother getting rid of him now that he was entrenched and had a following?

April 22 2008 at 4:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I liked the concept of the show, however, Irvine was like nails on a chalkboard to me. Symon would improve it in my opinion.

@htchkr: When someone falsifies their resume, an employer really needs to just cut ties. I would assume someone at the network is feeling the heat for this as well, whether we hear about it or not. Trust was broken between Irvine and the network and everyone looked bad. I think the network is doing the right thing by moving on and changing the show up a bit.

April 22 2008 at 12:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to GL's comment

If every employers cut ties with every employee who embellishes their resumes, there would be a lot of more people out of work. I don't think what he did was right, and I'm not trying to defend lying to get a job. I have a hard time belieiving the network (or at the very least the show's producers) had no idea that his past was exeragerated. I mean what they said in the opening made a better story and the concept more in line with the show they wanted to show. This is entertainment not history. And that is the point of this whole situation, is this show and network about entertaining people of presenting fact only. Yes the shows are edited to tell a story, so in that way it isn't any different than any other entertainment show on any network. Should we then expect all actors on all shows to have experience to play their roles. I see this show simply as a show and he is just a performer, who happens to have a background in cooking.
I'm sorry you don't like him personaly, I can see how he isn't for everyone, but I like his style and on screen persona, and will miss him on the show. I'm sure I'll watch the new shows, but for me it just won't the same.

April 22 2008 at 12:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I don't understand why they got rid of Robert Irvine. He's a chef, not a nuclear physicist! So he embellished his resume. So what?

April 22 2008 at 11:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

An hour? It was boring when only 30 minutes.

April 22 2008 at 10:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

If they are going to change everything about the show, chefand length why even keep the name. I really only watched the show because of Robert Irvine, he's what made the show fun for me. I don't agree with him being untruthful about his past, but the network should have checked into it more before they gave him the job. Why is he the only one being punished, aside from current fans of the show? And frankly I don't care that he didn't do everything they claimed in the opening. I'd never heard of him before the show, so it didn't really matter. The fact is he would be dropped into all these situations and accomplish all these amazing meals. This was a show about accomplishing the task at hand, not what you had done previously. Just change the opening, make him correct his resume, appologize (to anyone who cares, I'm wathcing him for the entertainment value, not cooking lessons) and get back to making the show.

April 22 2008 at 10:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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