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The pressure cooker of the finale brings out the sweat and the spice as our cheftestants wok the streets of Singapore.
When the Bravo van full of Cheftestants rolled into Singapore for part one of the D.C. finale, Live Chatterers from across the country hitchhiked close behind to play their part in covering the epic battle between this year's fearsome final foursome.
Right away chatterers took the floor with comments aplenty about Angelo's potential for an edge in the competition due to his penchant for Asian cooking. Take OliveAnne who hated on the location for that very reason. "I so wish it was any place but Singapore," she said. "It gives Asian Man Angelo an advantage since that is all he cooks." But West Coast chatterer and self-professed Gail Simmons superfan Mark begged to differ "I love Singapore. If anyone has a chance to go..GO! EAT AND EAT AND EAT!" Chatroom clown Mimi was more philosophical, wondering, "…what the curve ball will be when they arrive in Singapore?"
Tiffany's much lamented exit last week had left most chatterers split on whom to call their new favorite. Shelly captured the mood when she said, "I think I'm rooting for Ed now, but I'm undecided." East Coaster OliveAnne presaged a fight to the end when she so sagely said, "Cooking is like basketball. A lot can happen at the very end. Things can change." But wait, Olive. Don't the Lakers always win?
The night's Quickfire Challenge asked each of the Cheftestants to cook Singapore street food using only a wok. But when Kevin apparently forgot to do his homework and learn how to cook with a wok, Padma wasn't the only one to lay the smack down! "So I guess Kevin probably isn't winning this one," said Danielle. Christine wasn't giving Kevin a break either: "Hell, if I were going to Singapore, I'd know how to use a wok to win $125K." But tweenbeansupreme wasn't worried about woks: "I wish they would just have a macaroni and cheese battle." Shhh tweenbean, don't give away the finale food fight!
It was clear the chefs were under a lot of pressure and the hot weather wasn't helping matters. West Coast vixen Namella Kim lashed out: "Oh hell to the no. No sweat please. Sea salt is cheap, plentiful and hygienic!" Pre-hypertension candidate MattyBravo didn’t seem to mind as he countered, "Nothing wrong with a little sweat, guys! I love me some salty food!"
But in the end, old time pros like TimMerritt6 and the indefatigable Burnt Toast called it when they said, "Ed has this in the bag," and "C'mon Ed!" Fact is, most folks were pleased when Ed pulled out the surprise immunity-winning Quickfire. Shouts of "EDDDDDD," "Good for Ed," "Way to go Ed," and "Woohoo!" from Mimi, Hope, Barbara, and Shelley proved that point.
Despite the usual brilliance of the Live Chatterers, the quote of the night may have come from Cheftestant Kelly. Just ask Chatterer Danielle G who quoted, "Don't open Asian cans? That totally needs to be on a t-shirt!" Roger that, Danielle. Word from the merch department is that the shirts are already steaming up the Hudson towards Bravo HQ and should arrive shortly (Note: Kelly bobblehead sold separately).
During the Elimination challenge, Chatterers were skeptical of the Cheftestants ability to work together as a team, especially considering Ed's immunity from elimination. "Ed is nasty," said Zee rather nastily. "Yeah, Ed is going straight for Angelo's jugular," agreed Danielle G before adding, "which is exactly what I'd probably do in that situation!" Put down the knife, Danielle, and release the crying puppy.
Hope probably had it figured out first though. "They can call this a 'team' challenge," she said. "But who are we kidding? They're all in it for themselves....can you blame them?" Maybe we can't, Hope. But we can we at least indulge in the kitchen politics, right?
When Ed won the Elimination Challenge, many in the Live Chat were not surprised. "Ed was planning ahead for sure," said Kat. "Wonder if he knew that four dishes wouldn't be enough and thought ahead whereas the others didn't? Go Ed!"
It was then on to that unavoidable time of night accented by what Caitlin called, "Doom music that sounds like Yoga music." Isn't that just a fancy way to say, "Sounds like Enya," Caitlin? As Tom mentioned how tough of a decision it was to eliminate someone who had just made such a long trip to Singapore to compete, some chatterers had no sympathy. Caitlin said she remembered way back to episode one, "When Angelo said, 'I'm going to win every challenge and Quickfire.' So much for that! Sorry Angelo, I think you're going home."
Chatterer dfunkmcgunk, who kindly graced the Live Chat with her presence after a two-week absence, may have summed it up best when she said, "WHOA!" after the judges told Kelly to pack her knives. "Okay, there it is. Kelly goes," commentated captain obvious mgresist.
Next week, the live chat steps aside and opens the door for a special finale Talk Bubble. As partially-reformed party boy (and Live Chat host) JohnnyBravo succinctly put it, "Be there or be non bubble-shaped!"