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August 29, 2015

Will Fox let us see the other Gordon Ramsay?

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 7th 2009 10:00AM
gordon_ramsay_cookingWhile reading Joel's account of the Fox media panel, I was curious about the announcement of a new special called Gordon Ramsay: Cookalong Live. It sounds like a variation on Food Network's Emeril Live or Paula's Party, but hopefully, it'll be a lot better. And perhaps we'll get to see the Gordon Ramsay Fox has not revealed up to now.

Unless you've been living in a cave the past five years or so, you know that celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay has emerged as one of the biggest stars on TV. But if you only watch Gordon on his Fox TV shows -- Hell's Kitchen and Kitchen Nightmares -- you've only seen one side of the bellicose chef. On those shows, he's a screaming, cursing, demanding, hard-driving taskmaster. He's compelling, but you wouldn't want to be on the other side of one of his verbal tongue-lashings.

If you click over to BBC America, however, you can see Gordon Ramsay as England has seen him. The version of Kitchen Nightmares broadcast in the UK shows Ramsay as much more caring and sympathetic. But even more than KN, watch him on Gordon Ramsay's The F Word. Once you get past the coy title -- f is for food, get it? -- Ramsay gets to do all kinds of food-related stuff and he rarely yells at the top of his lungs.

He challenges celebrities to cook in the kitchen with him, teaches his children about growing animals for food, instructs others how to make simple dishes, and is generally playful, funny, instructive and charming. Even when he's barking orders at the kitchen volunteers, he's a kinder and gentler Gordon. He still curses like mad, but he doesn't seem all ginned up like when he's on Fox.

So, here's hoping the one-hour Cookalong, which is based on a successful Brit production in which Gordon gives a step-by-step cooking lesson in real time, presents the heretofore unseen Ramsay. I'll tune in December 15 at 9 PM to find out. And you can bet there'll be a Fox censor sitting on the button to bleep out Ramsay's salty language!

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I'm genuinely confused (easy to do): I am to believe this is a new special of some sort, yes? Yet, Mininova tells me that episode 1 was broadcast in November 2008, and there were seven episodes up until December of last year.

So: how does this 'new' special relate to the old specials?

August 07 2009 at 7:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to midwich's comment

Having investigated a bit further, I'm guessing the seven old specials were the UK versions. Worth downloading then I'd have thought!

August 07 2009 at 7:15 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Chief Plonker

Cookalong Live is a great show - here's a summary of what Gordon Ramsay cooked in the last 7 part series that aired in the UK!


The show was very entertaining, with some great Gordon Ramsay comedy moments chucked in. He set himself for a few challenges (like in the F Word) and was happy to learn of more expereince chef - like when preparing Indian food or going head to head in a noodle making competition.

One of these epiodes was even filmed when the 'mistress allegations' surfaced (when he says it has been a difficult week) and still the show went on (with no less energy!)

This I believe is the real Gordon Ramsay!

August 07 2009 at 6:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I have been watching the BBCA shows for several years now and because of that I have respect for Ramsay's
accomplishments. The man has a passion to break down the barriers between "chef" and "home cook". He also has a passion to see others succeed in their restaurant businesses . Having crashed and burned himself once before, he knows first hand what it takes to rise from the ashes of poor decisions and knows that it is possible if you have the cooking abilities and business skills needed.

America has made him look like a petty tyrant who has a "one trick pony" menu. I don't watch the American version of "Nightmares" as it focuses on the vermin and the screaming instead of the work that goes into bringing back the restaurant from closing.

I don't think Britain has any less vermin in their restaurants than they do here, but you rarely see them on those shows on BBCA. While there are some hotheads on the BBCA shows, we see Ramsay shouting at them only when reasoning with them and example doesn't work.

I would love to see an American version of the "F" word, that doesn't show Ramsay in a less than intelligent light.

Think that will happen? Doubt it. Screaming maniacs sell advertising space here in America, especially on FOX.

August 07 2009 at 10:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to wulfn1's comment
Jake G

I agree, I love Kitchen Nightmares and The F Word on BBC America. Its the REAL Gordan Ramsey... He can get angry, but he never really lashes out like he does on the american version of Kitchen Nightmares, and Hells Kitchen.

August 07 2009 at 9:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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