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Masterchef Australia – The Judges Did Not Like Season Two

The Masterchef Australia pre-show media frenzy continues, and now the judges have revealed to the Daily Telegraph they did not enjoy Season 2 of the show.

The Daily Telegraph writes:

Preston makes no bones about the fact that he, Calombaris and Mehigan didn’t enjoy the second series of MasterChef.

The trio’s displeasure wasn’t just with some of the contestants – it was also aimed at themselves.

“In series two we were all overly dramatic,” Preston says. “We were all ‘performing’ for the first half (of the series), and as soon as we saw what it was like on the TV, we went, ‘Oh my God, that is so ridiculous, so overblown’.”

Last season’s Country Women’s Association challenge was an embarrassment. Many of the contestants couldn’t even bake a simple sponge, scone or fruit cake.

“We’ve become better at picking contestants that we think will grow through the course of the show,” Preston says.

“We’ve stripped out some of the dickhead factor. This year a lot of contestants are cooking for their family and friends. They’re not cooking their way through the complete works of Heston Blumenthal. They are people who cook as part of their lives rather than as an extreme sport.”

I take it this is code for no plate throwing this season thankfully.

The article also states there will be no second chance re-entry into the show, as there was in the first two seasons.

“We decided to remove things that don’t feel right,” Preston says. “Hopefully, it will feel more natural.”

Personally I don’t mind the second chance re-entry, as sometimes there are people who are eliminated due to having bad luck on the day or if your favourite goes early you keep watching on the off chance they will get back in.

The other thing they reveal is there will be less bitchiness and crying.

MASTERCHEF Australia judges Matt Preston, George Calombaris and Gary Mehigan have vowed to stamp out the bitchiness and blubbering that plagued last year’s season of the hit series.

This year, they say, will be back to basics.

Last year, contestants including Jonathan “The Terminator” Daddia (IT consultant) and Claire Winton Burn (lawyer) fell out of favour with the judges and viewers for their perceived arrogance and repeated crying.

There was a lot of wailing on screen last year, however I actually thought the crying by Jonathan Daddia made him human to the audience. Also Claire Winton Burn being out of favour with the judges? She made top three, does that mean if she had been in favour she would have won. I thought the reason Claire Winton Burn did not get to the final was related to personal life issues.





1 davsimp { 04.27.11 at 10:18 am }

I’ m sure at least some lack of enjoyment felt by the judges was to do with some of the contestants. There were a lot of them I couldn’t stand. Claire (I chose the hardest dish, no you friggin did not!!) WB for one. She was lucky to have stayed in for as long as she did. How she made it to the top three was beyond me.

“In series two we were all overly dramatic, We were all ‘performing’ for the first half (of the series)” says Mr plate smasher. Surely he jests??

The disasters plated up from the CWA challenge were unforgiveable, however, they were cooking outdoors. I am sure the ladies in that organisation have never had to attempt that before either. They may have done quite well (hopefully) had they had the opportunity to use an indoor kitchen.

The statement about home cooks etc is also a contradiction. A lot of them get blasted for producing dishes that are too simple and not up to masterchef standards. It was the producers that tried to make this into an “extreme sport” not the contestants.

RR, I didn’t mind the re-entry of eliminated contestants either. I was hoping like mad Jake would get back in. He was awesome, and I believe he was unfairly dismissed. He did his best with a butchered tuna or salmon was it? After someone had ballsed it up by not removing the bones properly.

There was a lot of blubbering last season but I didn’t notice much bitchiness. I also loved Jonathan’s attitude, I thought he was great.

2 JaniceG { 04.27.11 at 10:28 am }

I agree with you: bringing back eliminated contestants is actually ok with me. As long as it’s not done often, it can actually help restore possibly worthy candidates who might have gotten whacked through a fluke.

If they really want to reduce the drama factor, they could concentrate more on the actual food and less on the interviews, especially when they’re recaps of things *we’ve just seen for ourselves*, and *especially* if they’re recaps of things that were boring when we saw them for ourselves. I’ve already started getting annoyed about this just from the short teasers on Channel 10: [Large MasterChef wooden box is lowered from a helicopter] Contestant interview: “And then this big box with an M on it came down!” (And, btw, if she’s auditioning to be on MasterChef, wouldn’t you think she’d recognise the logo? But I digress…)

3 PollyB { 04.27.11 at 11:32 am }

It is about time these overweight, overpaid chefs/critic got real. I love these foody shows, and I don’t outright dislike any of the 3 amigos, but am soooo glad that Matt Moran will be on more. OK, he can come across a bit arrogant at times, but I expect he won’t overdo the overly saccharine act that the other 3 do. I mean, he has a bit of grit about him, and no excess blubber. Mm mmm!! And, really, who finds Gary Mehigan sexy? I can see how some may find George cute and Matt Preston’s ‘eccentricity’ appeals to others, but Gary is just sooo bland.
I am really hoping to see less of the theatre and more of the food. And Matt!

4 Paul { 04.27.11 at 12:24 pm }

Glad they’re going to be doing more recipes that anyone at home can attempt.

Too many gadgets and ingredients last season that were simply out of reach for the everyday cook.

5 brain dead dave { 04.27.11 at 2:14 pm }

Pig’s ar$e they won’t be more dramatic this year. The producers made the arrival of a wooden crate bigger than Ben Hur.

Then Matt Preston with his “from the mine to the vine” quip on the promo. Not overblown or dramatic at all…..if you’re in a Shakespearian play.

There is some crying in the promo to be sure. Why do all those American infommercials in the wee hours feature cutomers crying or about to ? They know it can affect and involve people.

What are the judges going to promise next…no carbon tax?

6 davsimp { 04.27.11 at 2:28 pm }

What’s going to irk me even more than the bigger-than-Ben-Hur box descending is the exaggerated gasps and “oooh’s” and “aaah’s” from the over-dramatic types. I hope there are some cool, calm and collected ones in this series like Jonothan and Aaron. The ones who insist on throwing their frocks up at anything that they perceive to be slightly out of the ordinary shit me to tears.

7 brain dead dave { 04.27.11 at 2:35 pm }

Like these prawns haven’t been down to the wharves before and seen a wooden crate lowered?

It’s a wooden crate…not a golden calf.

8 Wurstsemmel { 04.27.11 at 3:55 pm }

I don’t mind the second chance either. What I don’t like is the featuring of unnecessary recaps and the fact that they don’t show every dish made. If they focus more on the cooking and less on the sob stories, I’ll be happy.

And, PollyB? I actually find Gary Mehigan quite cute and sexy (perhaps not to the extreme of Manu Feildel) but then I’m a Brit and will use that as my excuse.

9 Wurstsemmel { 04.27.11 at 3:56 pm }

BDD….so looking forward to the commentary from yourself and Culinary Boner this season…oh, and Sourkraut…..I think the comments here will be ultimately more entertaining than the show itself.

10 PollyB { 04.27.11 at 4:31 pm }

Excuse accepted Wurstsemmel. However being a Brit hasn’t affected your good taste in your appreciation of our Frenchie, Manu! 😉

11 Fides { 04.27.11 at 5:24 pm }

Matt P’s comment about stripping back the “dickhead factor” is in reference to himself and the Gs, right? Because I wouldn’t have thought you could really apply that term or real bitchiness to last year’s contestants – haven’t they all become BFFs?

Damn you MC – I swore after the farce of Junior MC that I would not be back for more. Yet I keep reading about how different it’s going to be this year and I’m getting completely sucked in.

12 Sourkraut { 04.27.11 at 8:16 pm }

It all sounds like a lot of Julia’s promises!
and PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE dont push raw meat, any form of pasta (boring as hell) or freakin risotto. Likewise dont put sparrow size portions on the plate with artfully dribbled sauces to make it look like more (tight arses). Also PLEASE no more sneering at 70s dishes, its all I know how to cook except spag bol. Finally no second (or third) chances please it only encourages paranoid loonies like me into thinking of conspiracy theories. (and I know for a fact at least one of the judges is from Betelgeuse as an advanced agent sent to undermine our yoof by encouraging poor nutrition on the show b4 the invasion of earth)

13 smauge { 04.27.11 at 8:25 pm }

Oh god please let it be true there’ll be no plate smashing! I cringe at that, Preston must have been MORTIFIED seeing that back!
Another vote for the returned contestant (and another vote for wishing Jake had come back!) I wonder how Poh’s post-MC career would have gone without coming back? I know a lot of poeple didn’t warm to her, but my kids LOVE her and have her app on their iPads.
And I LOVED Jonothan last year! Especially when he met Heston Blumenthal (Whom I’d never heard of before then) – He was like a little kid at the Easter Show!

14 Reality Raver { 04.27.11 at 10:02 pm }

Davisimp – I love your “It was the producers that tried to make this into an “extreme sport” not the contestants.” So true particularly last year some of the early challenges were lethal. Also I was a big fan of Jonathan’s he gave off attitude but could cook, and was quite engaging particularly when he cried.

JaniceG – Oh yes so agree don’t tell us what we can quite obviously see.

Polly B and Wurstsemmel – Firstly apologies that it has taken me all day to wade into this debate. Firstly I must raise my hand to being on Team Gary. I am not sure whether it is stockholm syndrome of watching 50 million hours of the show I think he is attractive. I also thought Gary’s role was highlighted when he was off with his bung knee for 2 weeks, he actually brought some levity to the Marx Brothers act George and Matt do.
However I think Matt Moran may hit him out of the ball park this season. I love him on TV have been a huge fan since The Chopping Block. Also my bald chef fetish continues I am starting to think Heston Blummenthal is hot.

BDD – LOL at you all ready calling the bollocks that we know we are going to see. One question don’t you sleep, what is with watching infomercials?

Fides – you have to watch and join the conversation here.

Sourkraut – they really need to do a fondue invention test. I could send in my Don Dunstan Cookbook to assist them.

Smauge – Good point about Poh, her career would not have occurred without the second chance.

15 davsimp { 04.27.11 at 10:07 pm }

Speaking of bald chef fetish, ADRIANO ZUMBO FOR THE WIN!!

16 littlepetal { 04.27.11 at 11:25 pm }

Talking about the drama. Matt Preston himself was the drama king !!!! Like throwing the plate of pasta. He is as guilty as the rest.

17 PollyB { 04.28.11 at 12:30 am }

Loving all this and it is still 3 days to go!
I’m another vote for wanting Jake back. The producers treated him disgracefully.
Yes, RR, I remember, and agree, Gary’s role was highlighted in his absence. He is the middle road, I guess they did need that with the other 2. And, Heston must be working out the older he gets. Much slimmer over the past couple of years, for the better!

18 smauge { 04.28.11 at 7:26 am }

For Davsimp (bad phot of me)

19 Culinary Boner { 04.28.11 at 10:36 am }

Don’t think we’ll be seeing Jake, unfortunately. Safe Work Australia have probably gazetted a special national regulation to keep this industrial-accident-on-legs away from commercial kitchens. Am hoping that we have another eel challenge though in the early stages – this time with live ‘uns a la Iron Chef. More slaughtering and cooking animals please, so we can have nubiles from PETA flash their tits on set in moral indignation. Imagine the smirks Gazza and George will sport when this happens.

20 davsimp { 04.28.11 at 10:37 am }

Smauge that is awesome, was that in Sydney? Great pic of the Zumb and you look really good too. Did you get one of the ‘I ♥ Zumbo’ T’shirts? I emailed him and asked how to get one but he didn’t get back to me, hahahahahaha.

21 Reality Raver { 04.28.11 at 1:01 pm }

Davisimp – as you know I embarrassingly introduced myself to Zumbo, but Matt Moran has more charisma. I think Zumbo may be a Gen Y thing.

Smauge – great photo – did the earth move?

CB- Oh Peta will be working on a strategy now to try and get on the set, they love a publicity stunt.

22 smauge { 04.28.11 at 4:11 pm }

Davsimp – The photo was taken at The Lab, his (very small) cafe/kitchen in Rozelle. They don’t sell the tshirts there, but they do up the road at his hole in the wall Patissiere in Balmain. (I haven’t bought one….yet.) I’ve been several times to both establishments but this was the first sighting of Le Zumbo.
RR – The Earth must have moved coz I was shaking a bit after. I’m definately no Gen Yer so you can rule that one out. But Matt Moran is a lovely person. I have a sneaking suspicion that our man Zumbo may have a touch of Aspergers about him. That’s quite often mistaken for being a bit brusque. Having said that he was lovely to all of us (me and my two kids + a friend and her 3 kids) on this day. Even when my little miss wandered upstairs into “Staff Only” territory and interupted his morning tea LOL!

23 Craig Cruden { 04.21.12 at 11:42 pm }

I would actually prefer some form of double elimination format where you have to be “eliminated” twice, before your actually gone for good. It gives all the contestants a little insurance against one bad day, as opposed to bringing back contestants. Remember the runner up in the first season was Poh — who was brought back which I was quite happy with.

24 Helen { 10.06.12 at 1:50 am }

Can I just ask if the way Geore holds a utensil and eats, annoys anyon? You would think someone like him would know by now how to hold a fork or spoon like an adult and not a one year old. I wonder where he grew up (maybe in a field in Cyprus!). You would think his mum would have picked up on it and corrected him when he was young. Don’t get me wrong, I like George but please George, for Gods sake, eat properly!!