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1-1: "Peter's" 2007.09.19 (recap)


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#31

Mama Tiger

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:03 PM

Aha! Yes, bookies explains it all! And I have to wonder how Peter was allowed to get his hands on the restaurant's money -- I mean, Tina didn't really give him the money to go buy a new stove, did she? Because Peter was bragging about how it went on that ugly suit. What an ass! If I were her, I would have at least gotten a safe, put every penny into it the moment it was handed over, and refused to give him the combination!

What killed me was what an ugly jerk Peter is. I don't mean just his general jerkishness, but he looked like he's been kicked in the face a few too many times. You can't coat that kind of ugly no matter how many hours you spend over-tanning.

It was pretty clear that nobody has stood up to him in far, far too long. Good on Gordon for doing it. Although I too agree the turnaround was suspiciously fast. Perhaps Peter's behavior in the first part of the show was his idea of an audition for the next Goombahs (sp?) movie? Famewhore wannabes are everywhere, alas.

#32

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:09 PM

Forgot to mention how much I wanted to kick him in the head for going in the kitchen and eating those oysters.

I would have smacked that plate right out of his hands. What an ass!

#33

ciiker123

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:11 PM

- Peter's only (and I mean ONLY) use through the show was actually making the phone call to get the walk-in fridge fixed. He's useless. The whole blow-up with the bill collector was immature at best. Everyone played their part in that segment. The kitchen staff "held" him back. He played the bad-ass.


Did anyone also notice how Peter in his "rage" knocked his father down and the bill collector looked as though he was trying to help his father up while Peter just kept lunging at him with everyone holding him back. I am surprised his parents never told him off, especially with all of his eating the food and then humiliating the young waitress in front of everyone because their food was late (because Peter ate it and the chefs had to start cooking another order).

#34

caje

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:16 PM

Well, that was certainly entertaining. I agree with all the previous posters about smallPeter's all of a sudden seeing the light. It makes me wonder about the true integrity of the entire story....wait a minute, this is a reality show. Never mind!

#35

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:19 PM

Am I the only one who thinks that the family went on this show because they couldn't get Super Nanny or Nanny 911 to come in and take care of that over grown child? Or get Peter sent to jail. One near brawl, one actual assault (I think pounding on the window of the car and the hood of the car and grabbing the guy counts), theft, and tax evasion (I am guessing that the $200 was not included in either his or the restaurants taxes).

They said the restaurant has been in business for 17 years so I am guessing it was opened when Peter and Tina were kids. Then they took it over when their parents wanted to retire.

I want more on the food. Did Ramsey insist that they start using fresh ingredients or did the lobster ravioli come from the restaurant depot?

The new kitchen was very generous. They don't do things like that on the UK version. I almost wish they hadn't done it for them. It was like rewarding Peter for being an over spending ass.

I did love watching Peter and his drink orders. I think Tina spent more time making his drinks then anyone else's. Seriously, Peter needs to go. Leave the business fast.

Wow, can't wait to hear what he has to say now that it has aired.

ETA: I loved GRrrr standing up to Peter and watching Peter have to take it. No more bluster and bravado. He just had to take it. You could see that everyone else enjoyed it as well.

Edited by ProfCrash, Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:23 PM.


#36

dunvegan948

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:21 PM

The young dunvegans (they love them some GRrr) enjoyed with me the irony of the ultimate fake tough guy, Peter, accusing the first "bill collector" of being a fake tough guy. I also agree about the suspicious rapidity of Peter's turnaround. (Is it only a coincidence that his name is another term for "dick"?)

I also found the hour time slot way too short. I think a two-episode approach would be better, with the first hour showing the problems and plans and the second showing the execution and a follow-up. Still, any Ramsay is good Ramsay.

#37

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:23 PM

I didn't like this nearly as much as KN UK. Maybe it was the editing, maybe it was the Peter drama dominating the show, but a lot of stuff just seemed to happen. In this episode, the kitchen was magically transformed, but in the UK version we've actually see Gordon roll up his sleeves and clean out the kitchen with the staff. In this version, the new menu gets about 10 seconds worth of mention, but in the UK version Gordon actually explains the reasons for the changes. In both cases, he is attempting to get the owners and staff to buy into a new way of running their kitchen. Sometime he succeeds, sometimes he doesn't, but I find it a fascinating process. This episode was just drama with a deus ex machina happy ending.

#38

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:29 PM

Great, fun, show. Loved it.

Count me with those who think they weren't so much "bill collectors" as they were "bookies" or some other seedy person Peter was associated with. Why was the restaurant named after him anyway?

What a tool though. The way he was mugging with his $1000 dental work and suit and car and giving free bottles of wine (which probably run $50 - $100 a pop easily) he was a great, big, liability for that restaurant. He stood there in the kitchen eating the food that was supposed to go out to his customers?! The hell?!

I find the turn around a bit hard to swallow but not totatly. Depending on the time frame or the guy's real heart it's not completely impossible. Decent enough series, I guess.

#39

Tejayes

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:38 PM

As a die-hard fan of the original UK series, I was highly fearful of how FOX would handle the show. I just knew that FOX would transform the softer side of Ramsay in favor of the hardass we see on HK. Thankfully, Ramsay was just as cool as on the UK version.

Therefore, FOX had to fuck up everything else. The opening title, just like HK, took WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too much time, as did the preview of the episode we were just about to watch. The abundant private confessionals were out of place and completely unnecessary. Like on the UK version, what we see during normal taping is enough to get a good read on the staff's personalities. That and the use of music, sound effects, and visual effects was FOX's usual useless way of saying they think we're too stupid to know that spending essential monies on teeth whitening is a bad idea. The editing, as with the aforementioned Zagat plaque, was shitty (I love how the BBC America version keeps that word unbleeped). We saw way too little food, the transformation was too quick and stilted, and unless I'm mistaken, there was no revisit a month or so later. Plus, why couldn't they just have Gordon himself narrate rather than that assy guy they used?

I still like the show, but FOX just had to FOXitize it. Is there a Network Nightmares premiering soon?

#40

skatemd

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:45 PM

I am a major fan of the UK version of this show that airs on BBC America. This version was ok but I did wonder why Gordon gave them something as extravagant as a new stove--he did not do that sort of thing in the UK version. Maybe Fox had to do something like that to get the owners to buy into the concept. The restaurant was in appalling shape( why had they not addressed the broken stove?) and I agree the family should have told Peter off long ago. You could see how the staff was enjoying Gordon telling Peter the truth--he was a liability to the restaurant. The arguments were really something( I could not believe Peter knocked his own father to the sidewalk!) and I bet even Gordon was surprised by the level of aggression he saw. Gordon did not know how close he came several times to getting hit by Peter. Only Gordon's buying new kitchen equipment and the fact that Peter seemed to respect Gordon from the start kept Gordon from getting what we call a fist sandwich. Note to Gordon: sometimes people in the US also carry weapons in addition to throwing punches so be careful with the "in your face" attitude and cursing people out. We Americans are not as class conscious as the British and we take more exception to disrespect regardless of the so called higher status of the person doing the disrespecting(ie, Gordon as the famous chef)--so that will not protect you if you call the wrong person a name here. A lot of what was driving Peter crazy this episode was the perception that someone was disrespecting him/ the restaurant/ Gordon( take your pick). Cursing someone in the US is not a cue for people to pay attention and be shamed but is a cue here that a fight may take place, especially if it is done in an embarassing manner. It will be interesting to see if Gordon tones it down a notch here in the US after seeing some volatile situations Stateside.

A cultural note: Peter was a classic Long Island "Guido"--a middle class Italian American male with an eye to materialism. The bleached teeth, expensive suits, the big black car, the gold chain,expensive watch, etc is classic. Peter also had a soupcon of being a gym rat with possible steriod use( hence the rage) and ? gambler--those "bill collectors" were either his bookies or loan sharks(ie, Mafia) and they were appearing in person because these men in person were there to collect on more personal debts, IMO. Otherwise, bill collectors just harrass people by phone.

#41

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:51 PM

I have to agree with those who feel that this version of KN has lost some of the charm of the UK version. Being Fox, they just have to rathcet up the faux drama - this week, rageaholic asshole! next week, filth and cockroaches everywhere!

I want to see inept but likeable owners struggling to make their restaurants successful. I want to see demoralized chefs reinvigorated or sent packing. I don't want to see over-the-top drama, because that's not what this show is supposed to be about. For that, I tune into Hell's Kitchen. And I agree, I want to see more about the food, because that is in the end the key to success or failure.

That said, I found Gordo to be just as charming as on the UK version.

#42

addicted_aardvark

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:51 PM

Well, not as bad as I expected after reading Mo Ryan's column, but definitely more US HK than UK KN.

Peter was a scary man. I wonder how much was played up for TV (or, more frightening, played *down* for TV) and how much was "real Peter". That's a lawsuit or protection order waiting to happen. Even if he had his amazing turnaround of attitude about the restaurant, I doubt that he has lost his rage. (Given his physique, wonder if it was roid rage. skatemd - guess we were thinking/posting at the same time)

As mentioned upthread, we did get a chance to see some of the gentler, caring about the food and restaurant GRrr. But it seemed so buried under the ton of dramatic crap and special audio/video stuff that I imagine new viewers may well miss that aspect of the show.

I did love the shots of Robert (the chef)'s face at several times when GRrr took Peter down a few notches. (Which Peter didn't always "get")

- I was disappointed that after it was all said and done that he didn't stop back in (like in the UK version) after a few weeks to see how things were going

.
As was I. I wonder if they plan to do so for future episodes, and also if the charming little outdoor "event" was supposed to be the happy ending revisit, tailored for us iggnerent US viewers??

And yes, Faux, please - more food, more Gordon, no outrageously expensive freebies, and much less drama and soundtrack.

Oh - forgot to mention. I liked that front of the house guy. The family should trade Peter in for him in a more prominent role.

Edited by addicted_aardvark, Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:54 PM.


#43

MRMO

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 10:59 PM

Gordon Ramsey meets Dick Donato. FOX knows assholes work well on shows like this so I expect a lot more Peter's in coming spisodes.

What I missed...Who paid for the new kitchen?

#44

coors1977

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:01 PM

I liked that front of the house guy. The family should trade Peter in for him in a more prominent role.

But to me, I thought Peter was exactly what a lot of those people wanted to see in coming to a small, Italian-family owned Italian restaurant. I think they could have capitalized on having their own Guido out front, schmoozing and upselling left and right. Peter just didn't know how to do it. He was more of the give-it-away type who wanted everyone to like him.

But I understand what you're saying; Angelo seemed to understand that a restaurant is a business and the bottom-line is what matters. I, too, think he could have done okay in a "manager-for-show" role. I also liked him saying that, because Peter eats out a lot, he (Peter) feels like he knows how to cook.

#45

KirbDogg

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:07 PM

I found this episode to be a total disappointment... it was all American high drama and none of the charm the British version of the show had. What I liked about the British version was GR talking to the owners and the staff and working with them to make things better. The American version however involves owners fighting with "thugs" and a sort of abracadabra conclusion. I mean where was the true work on the kitchen, where was the lecture on menu, where was the personalization regarding the staff, where was the GR return 2 months later... What I really enjoyed about the British version was GR thinking about the restaurant's true problems and fixing them... this show did not have that... it was sort of a magic fix (with a b.s. new kitchen I might add, something never seen on the BBC version) While I will probably continue to watch the show, I think the BBC version is FAR superior and am truly disappointed with the American version...

#46

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:10 PM

I want to see if Gordon makes a habit of the freebies before calling shenanigans on that. From what was shown, you could make the case that Gordon had decided that the restaurant simply could not function with the kitchen they had, and that without a new one, they were doomed no matter what else he did. He did a clean-up first, and that seemed to only highlight the poor quality of the tools they had. Even if you can cook, if your stove won't, you ain't going anywhere. He might have figured, these people need new tools to work with, and they need them before I leave town.

I think if Gordon was in the freebie business, he'd have thrown in a new walk-in freezer as well, but there he made them fend for themselves.

Edited by mtvcdm, Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:13 PM.


#47

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:12 PM

Was I the only one hoping for "Oh, fuck me senseless!"? Or "Fuck me sideways!", as Mr. Turik likes to put it...

The Turiks are very familiar with the Babylon area, and we were happy to see Argyle Lake (little waterfalls under bridge), one of the historic village churches, the LIRR station (Long Island Railroad) and some of the waterfront houses (but could you have shown a few DIFFERENT houses? We saw the same still at least 3 times). The town's cleaned up nicely in the last ten years or so.

And yes, Peter is the archetypal Long Guyland Guido. I kept wanting Tina, who was terrific (loved her "I LOVE him!" re Gordo), to slap him silly, but that's not how those families do things. Parents annoyed me. And yes, bookies or other such for sure. But surely that guy's got grounds for a lawsuit? Assault on national TV. Though the whole thing did feel as staged as a Potemkin village.

Don't know if I can deal with bug and slop as promised for next week...but I'll take my Gordo any way I can get him.

#48

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:17 PM

Some of the preview clips had me worried, but this was better than I expected it to be. It's not as good as the UK version and it's very Foxified, but some of the redeeming qualities of the British original are still there. Even though it's Fox, I'm feeling optimistic about future episodes and I think I'll enjoy this show as much as I enjoy HK. If it's renewed for a second season, I hope they'll at least ditch the narrator and let Gordon do it himself. I'd much rather listen to his voice than the generic guy they have now.

Edited by justtee1, Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:19 PM.


#49

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:20 PM

This show has to at least hit something for mass (non-foodie) appeal... my husband watched the whole episode. He's *never* watched a whole episode of any of Gordon's UK stuff.

The "free brand new kitchen" gift surprised me. Did the UK version of the show have giveaways like that?


I wouldn't be surprised if the UK version just didn't have the sponsorship. I'd bet if you watch the credits really slow, you'd get to see all the "sponsers" who now donate their kitchen goods for the show. Believe me, I noticed those Viking stoves! And I still want one!

But I agree - not enough food or actual kitchen activity. It was obvious the "begining" food sucked, and even the chefs knew it talking about how they were basicly "store-bought" ravioli, but there was very little showing of what was done to turn the menu around to fresher, "just cooked" food. If Fox hasn't realized THAT is why people turn in to this show, this is gonna crash and burn.

#50

LolaLilaLilly

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:20 PM

Parents annoyed me. And yes, bookies or other such for sure. But surely that guy's got grounds for a lawsuit?


I'm guessing that bookies don't seek legal action all that much considering the business they are in.

I thought the new kitchen equipment was a nice gesture it was certainly something the restaurant needed, only one stove worked, and they probably didn't have the money to do it themselves. It will be interesting to see if "gifting" items to the restaurants is a continuing trend. (They also got new flatware and china as I recall.)

I personaly don't like "family style" eateries but it seemed a good fit to this place and these people.

Now, can I give anyone a bottle of wine?

#51

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:30 PM

Ack! TiVo taped some bogus channel instead of Fox. Er, well, you know what I mean.

I'm watching the last half of the episode now, but hubby's gonna be disappointed. I'm hoping reading this will catch me up on what happened in the first part.

Is Peter the one who sued Gordon? I read a story that one of the managers of one of the places, sued Gordon for making him look bad or something.

#52

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:30 PM

A lot more material could have been worked in if they hadn't been repeating half the show after each commercial. Also, I think the editing shaped the whole "Transformation of Peter" storyline. I think he probably apologized to the waitress that same night (he was wearing the same suit), things like that. He probably wasn't as bad as he was painted "before," nor as good as he was painted "after."

Besides the great front room guy mentioned by a previous poster, I was really impressed by the sous-chef. He took responsibility for his own bad performance and then, when the kitchen was given to him, he didn't say "now what was holding me back has been fixed," he said "we've been given a chance to prove ourselves and we have a responsibility." He seemed really smart and insightful.

It was hilarious how the head chef was amazed by GR's putting Peter in his place. I bet GR's his hero now.

#53

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:34 PM

I've not seen the UK version. I thought the show was ok.

#54

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:46 PM

Have to say, the UK version was much better. Gordon walks them through the whole process and then comes back for a check-up on the restaurant which usually starts going off the rails as soon as he leaves. I thought Peter was channeling Rocco DeSpirito and that is not a good thing. I will call this Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares ~ all Foxed up.

#55

Tresjolie9

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:50 PM

While the narrator kept repeating "bill collector", my wife took one look at Peter and said: "Bookie."


Bookie? Beforehand, was the restaurant really a business, or some type of front for Peter's other business interests?

I loved the start of the show w/ the Zagat plaque standing proudly by the front door.

At then end when Gordon was doing his wrap-up? The Zagat name was blurred.


ROTFL, I noticed that one too!

#56

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Posted Sep 19, 2007 @ 11:54 PM

I thought this show was hilarious. GR did not disappoint. That Peter guy though....what a freakin mook. I would not be surprised to read he was found in the trunk of his car with two or three holes in his head.

#57

LittleLou

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Posted Sep 20, 2007 @ 12:00 AM

OH my God. Peter....nice spray tan! I have never been so embarassed by a fellow Italian American. Hes EATING while customers dont have their orders. I mean really...did the orange stuff go straight to his brain. And YES, those were bookies...no real bill collectors show up in the middle of the evening. His poor sister, she is about to lose her house but by God at least smallPeter has a rolex and sports gambling habit!

#58

buttersister

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Posted Sep 20, 2007 @ 12:06 AM

it was all American high drama and none of the charm the British version of the show had. What I liked about the British version was GR talking to the owners and the staff and working with them to make things better. The American version however involves owners fighting with "thugs" and a sort of abracadabra conclusion.

Word ala mode. I was watching with a friend who's never seen the Brit version and I was noting the differences. But then, Fox, not BBCA.

More attention, time, emphasis and insights spent on the food, please. That the food wasn't the main course, but rather that clam-stealing creep, was a disappointment. Otoh, Gordon teaches and does not suffer fools - sign me up.

#59

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Posted Sep 20, 2007 @ 12:17 AM

Roid Rage, plain and simple. Add that to an indulged child who is now an indulged adult and the combination is frightening. I was surprised after GR said "this place will run better without you" and Il Roido say "Oh yeahs, soze yous say!", that GR didn't say "Let's see...you find something else to do for 24 hours and we'll see how this place does without you." He did that at one place in the UK show. I wonder why not here? I think we missed a lot of editing. That guy was letting his customer go hungry while he scarfed down the table's clams in the kitchen and then abused the waitress like it was her fault? I think if he started choking to death everyone would have pretended not to notice...except probably his enabling parents who I suspect are mostly responsbile for that abomination.

Not as balanced and engaging as the UK version, but GR is GR and I'll watch every week.

#60

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Posted Sep 20, 2007 @ 12:23 AM

Gah. Shut up completely unnecessary narrator guy!

Shut up obnoxious editors giving interview time to everybody but the one man you need to watch, Gordon.

I don't want to be all "The British version is so much better", but... The British version is so much better. Just quiet down with all the antics, the sound effects, the stupid, unnecessary flash and present the story simply. Ironically, that's the same advice Gordon usually gives about food.