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Sweet Genius


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#1

Bungalow Joy

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Posted Sep 14, 2011 @ 6:03 PM

Aw, no topic for this Food Network show yet. I've seen the promos and I'm intrigued. Could it be FN finally has a handle on the original Iron Chef's archness of tone? Could it be that FN is about to launch a show that outdoes the Bravo format? This Ron Ben Israel fella looks to be a kook.

Here's the site. Premieres Thursday, September 22nd, at 10PM.

#2

irisheyes11

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Posted Sep 14, 2011 @ 7:28 PM

I can't wait for this show...I'm hoping it lives up to my expectations!

#3

ThatPoshGirl

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Posted Sep 14, 2011 @ 11:49 PM

I'm looking forward to this one. I hope it ends up being more like Chopped and less like Cupcake Wars.

#4

MsLawDawg

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Posted Sep 15, 2011 @ 8:52 AM

The commercials scared me at first, until they started running the current ones and now I'm excited about the show starting. I wasn't familiar with Ron Ben Israel at all, but he was a guest judge on Top Chef: Just Desserts last night and I enjoyed him there. His cakes are absolutely exquisite--I don't think I could bring myself to eat a slice, and not because they are dowel rods, stale Rice Krispie treats, gum paste cartoon-looking people and fondant handled over and over again. His are like works of art. So now I'm intrigued. They seem to indicate a Chopped format, so hopefully that will be the case since Chopped will be in re-runs pretty soon after the Championship is over. All in all, it looks like a fun show from something I would have avoided like the plague based on the original commercials.

#5

ThatPoshGirl

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Posted Sep 15, 2011 @ 11:34 AM

FYI, Ron Ben-Isreal's website is weddingcakes.com. (He probably paid a pretty penny for that domain name.)

#6

FriedButter

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Posted Sep 15, 2011 @ 4:18 PM

I like the idea of this show since it sounds like Chopped Just Desserts. I'm not sure if I'll be able to watch though because the host seriously creeps me out. He reminds me of the villians from the D list movies from the 50's. Maybe I'll get use to him.

#7

scarlet1815

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Posted Sep 15, 2011 @ 4:25 PM

He reminds me of the villians from the D list movies from the 50's.

That's precisely what attracted me to the show!

#8

flotsette

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Posted Sep 15, 2011 @ 6:21 PM

He reminds me of Dr. Evil somehow. But I do sort of like the "Iron Pastry Chef" idea of the show.

Edited by flotsette, Sep 15, 2011 @ 6:22 PM.


#9

AladdinSane

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Posted Sep 17, 2011 @ 4:57 PM

Mslawdawg
Again I find myself searching for a 'like' button RE: one of your posts.
EVERYthing you mention ran thru my mind.

Initially I was apprehensive as they give RB-I a cartoony villian persona in the pre-views.
After seeing RB-I on TC:JD sans villian edit of the previews, I too am intrigued by the pastry-chef-version-of-Chopped vibe I'm sensing.

Edited by AladdinSane, Sep 17, 2011 @ 5:00 PM.


#10

xingcat

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Posted Sep 22, 2011 @ 10:24 PM

Okay, I'm all in with this show. I would like someone for Ron Ben-Israel to bounce off of, and I'm not sure that the disembodied computer voice really does the trick. That said, the set, the over-the-top judging with single words, the crazy ingredients coming out on a conveyor belt...oh, it's kitschy ridiculousness, and I couldn't be happier.

I liked all the chefs on this premier episode. I knew the drag queen pie baker was in over his head, and the other three were very well matched. Though the winning chef certainly seemed more creative with her final dessert, but it didn't look terribly appetizing. Three types of "sand" (all dry) with a mousse on the side that Chef Ron didn't mention at all, just seemed like a bit of a tasting plate, not exactly something one would crave. I liked the other chef's mousse, etc., though it did seem possibly too traditional and safe.

I'll be tuning in again. I think the show could use a host, and Ron Ben-Israel should be in the background, lurking as a semi-scary presence until the end, where he smiles benignly (and a little scarily) at the winner.

#11

nowhave3bears

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Posted Sep 22, 2011 @ 10:41 PM

Sweet Genius= Chopped: with a sugar rush. But I liked it.....

#12

Ginandtonic

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 1:01 AM

This show is a little strange, the computer voice, that thing he smacks for the ingredients, Ron Ben-Isreal's strange, slow, word by word diction, & is he wearing eye makeup? I think they need more judges or something. Having RBI being the only person isn't really working.

#13

AladdinSane

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 1:10 AM

I was only able to catch the 1st 15 mins of the opener & will have to see more to get a read on this show.
I'm meh towards the sci-fi/science vibe I sensed, but the actual challenge I saw was legit.

First impression of RB-I: his mannerisms reminded me of how Jeff Bridges played 'Starman' (I reserve the right to change my mind-what I saw had...a lot going on. Perhaps too much ,as I found my mind wandering trying to figure out WTH was going on RE the female-computer-voiceover and set decor in general).

The pie enthusiast/drag queen/BenStarr mash-up chef bugged.

Xfinity says FN is showing a total of 3 new eps in this 1st week, along w/several re-runs so I'll catch up.

I'm not sure why FN had to cartoon RB-I up; he was entertaining in what I saw of him on the Wonka TC:JD challenge.
At least he didn't play an asshole (sorry Johnny) so that right there buys this show some time with me as they find their footing.

Edited by AladdinSane, Sep 23, 2011 @ 9:30 AM.


#14

ThatPoshGirl

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 1:17 AM

Interesting. Silly. Over-the-top. Fun. Done.

#15

FriedButter

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 1:41 AM

I didn't much care for the show. But I didn't like Chopped either at first and now it's one of my favorite shows. I'll give it a couple more chances.

Alina looked to be a smirker when others were being criticized and I hate that. I thought she took the sand inspiration wayyy too literally and I would have sent her dish back without even tasting it.

This show is a little strange, the computer voice, that thing he smacks for the ingredients, Ron Ben-Isreal's strange, slow, word by word diction, & is he wearing eye makeup? I think they need more judges or something. Having RBI being the only person isn't really working.

The show feels like it should be on the Sci Fi channel. I noticed his eyes too - very pretty lashes. Ha. I'd like to see a new host with RBI as a 'normal' judge and at least 1 other and get rid of the conveyor belt (it reminds me of the Lucy chocolate factory episode).

The drag queen pie maker was very annoying. After the 50th 'I don't know what I'm going to do' I wanted to tie him to the conveyor belt and hit reverse.

#16

MsLawDawg

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 10:27 AM

I enjoyed this show...and I don't know why. I'll definitely tune in for the next episode. I think RBI is having fun playing a role after seeing him on TC:JD and looking at his work, but his critiques make sense and are mercifully brief, unlike Chopped. And I didn't hear sob stories, save the younger chef's referrals to his father and Alina's constant references to being self-taught. But there were no ghosts of fathers, mothers, siblings that died the day before, homelessness, 5-time cancer survivor, etc. That was refreshing.

The drag queen pie maker was very annoying. After the 50th 'I don't know what I'm going to do' I wanted to tie him to the conveyor belt and hit reverse.


Come hell or high water, he was going to make a pie, no matter what. You just can't go on a show like this and expect to do that. Perhaps if he had appeared as Aunt Bertha, he would have had more luck.

I wasn't pleased that weepy Alina won, as I thought the other chef displayed more talent over all. She took the theme of sand quite literally, and it wasn't something I'd want to eat. But I'm not a "Sweet Genius".

The computer voice bugs. It reminds me of Plankton and his computer wife, Karen, on Spongebob, except Karen has far more personality. That can go and possibly a live host take its place, as others have mentioned. I did like the fact that the chefs were given info about the theme and the mystery ingredients by the robotic voice.

I remember reading somewhere that Chopped's original concept was quite campy, but they ended up retooling it before airing. It could be that Bob Tuschface and Susie Medusa will get rid of the camp on this show and bring on the sob stories. Personally I can live with the camp, if RBI gets a live host instead of a robot and/or another judge, better than I can sob stories and culinary felonies.

#17

Bungalow Joy

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 4:16 PM

Oh, it should definitely stay campy. I thought it could have gone a smidge further. The challenges are real, the difficulties are real. Camp doesn't take anything away from any of that. Tearjerking would. It would reward sob story one-upmanship. It would turn the show into feel-bad entertainment. And in this economy I don't have it in me to feel bad for any more people!

OK, so for darkness I thought a chocolate box with a lid. Darkness isn't evil to me; it's mystery. For the Faberge egg, I'd have tried to "jewel" each cell of the waffle; probably cut it thin, formed it so it would keep a shape. For sand, I was disappointed they went with beach themes. I thought of creme brulee, or something sugared and brulee'd. Glass comes from sand.

#18

InnerCanuck

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 5:12 PM

The pie enthusiast/drag queen/BenStarr mash-up chef bugged.


All I could think was that he wants to be the Dame Edna of pie-baking. You're no Pie Man, buddy, nor are you Dame Edna. And he needs to stop taking my grandmother's nickname in vain...

The other Chef Michael...is he really a baseball fan? Because if it's the bottom of the ninth and the bases are loaded and you have a 3-2 count, striking out & hitting a home run aren't your only options. You could be hit by a pitch & drive in a run. You could risk keeping the bat on your shoulder & take ball four and drive in that run... For his dish, I think he did better than a strike out, but not a grand slam, maybe a solid double. He'd have driven in runs. In that WS scenario, then, his team was down a couple of runs and all he did was tie the game again. For someone else to hit out of the park.

I feared Alina's sand was just way too literal, but using the bone saved her concept. Michael did more different things with chocolate, perhaps showed more skill, but she was more creative. Well played. That, and the tears at making the final two - telling the sole judge he's your hero is rarely a bad strategy...

This was fun - I liked the campy tiered cake button thing and the computer voice didn't bother me too much. I'll record & watch again.

#19

InnerCanuck

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 5:13 PM

Sorry - double post

Edited by InnerCanuck, Sep 23, 2011 @ 7:02 PM.


#20

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Posted Sep 23, 2011 @ 11:00 PM

Never in my wildest days did I think I'd see bone marrow on a show about sweets, but there it was. I've never really seen it, either, so that was interesting.

Over the top, needs some other judges for conversation, and the contestants need to shut up, but I liked it.

#21

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Posted Sep 24, 2011 @ 11:45 PM

I enjoyed the show, and will watch it again. But I agree with those of you who think it needs additional judges. He could be the host and main judge. Perhaps they could add a couple of guest judges and refer to them as his monkey minions, and they could have 'frickin' laser beams attached to their heads.'

#22

ThatPoshGirl

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Posted Sep 25, 2011 @ 1:32 AM

I think even just a sidekick would work. Maybe a muppet.

#23

Rammchick

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Posted Sep 25, 2011 @ 9:50 AM

The challenges are real, the difficulties are real.


Someone watches Judge Judy.... ;)

I thought of this show as an amalgam of Chopped, Iron Chef and Mystery Science Theatre 3000. All in all, a sort of funny gemish that I'll keep watching.

#24

tahitigirl

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Posted Sep 25, 2011 @ 8:20 PM

"You...are no sweet genius"

("You...are the weakest link!")

#25

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Posted Sep 25, 2011 @ 11:57 PM

I keep waiting for the voiceover woman to finish one of her sentences with, "and hoping each time that his next leap will be the leap home…”

I like the show, though. The "teacher" contestant tonight COMPLETELY lost his accent after he was eliminated. What is up with that??

#26

tahitigirl

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 12:19 AM

I keep waiting for the voiceover woman to finish one of her sentences with, "and hoping each time that his next leap will be the leap home…”

Yes! (Too bad he doesn't look like Scott Bakula...)

She also sounds like the "Minute to Win It" voiceover.

#27

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 6:14 AM

Maybe it's my ADD but I feel totally overstimulated when I watch this show...crazy host, robot voice, stack of light up smackable plastic cakes, new ridiculous ingredients rolling down a conveyor belt at random, willy wonka decor, in addition to traditional challenge items; desserts, multiple rounds, contestant, clock. Wow, it's too much to take in. Like if you let a teenage girl decorate her own bedroom without editing it.

Honestly I've watched the show twice. I wanted to kill this ridiculous contrived judge the first time around. But I felt better about it the second time. I'll give it a couple chances.

And the promos..well there is a fine line between kitchy food show host and serial killer and they may have crossed it.

#28

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 8:31 AM

I enjoyed this show...and I don't know why. I'll definitely tune in for the next episode. I think RBI is having fun playing a role after seeing him on TC:JD and looking at his work, but his critiques make sense and are mercifully brief


I totally agree!

I had a feeling the show was going to be a bit strange. The running joke between me and my daughter, before the show even premiered, has been "I'm a -insert whatever silliness-, ARE YOU?" with a flourish of the hand. I think the weird factor is on purpose, kind of like a modern day, bald Willy Wonka and I enjoy the robot compurter voice/explaining the item. We cracked up when "sand" was described, LOL.

I like RBI's critiques and the way he allows the chefs to explain and defend their dishes, even if the explanations tend to be lame.

If they decide to have a co-host they need someone who's a bit of a mad scientist like RBI, but I think he's fine solo.

#29

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 8:33 AM

This show reminds me of a quiz show about ten years or so ago. The host was never seen from the front, but only from the rear. They used the same creepy computer like voice to introduce the contestants. Anybody remember what that was called? It was shot in a what appeared to be a warehouse or the like. It might have even been on the SciFi (SyFy) network.

#30

laprin

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 1:26 PM

How can a show that is campy and over-the-top be boring? Maybe because Ron Ben-Israel is neither charming nor charismatic. I was actually relieved when it was over because I have no need of returning to watch another one.

Edited by laprin, Sep 26, 2011 @ 1:26 PM.