Top Chef

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Gone Fishin'

And it is gorgeous. They meet Tom and Padma at a lighthouse, and Padma tells them that it's the most popular fishing spot in New York State. Really? With all the fly fishing in the Adirondacks and everything? Padma says that they're skipping the Quickfire this week, and the Elimination Challenge is to catch fish, and then cook whatever they catch for a party of 200 people that night. They don't say what happens if they don't catch any fish. That would be interesting. Vegetarian meal? And they'll be working in teams of three, which is disappointing to just about everyone. It's also a double elimination, probably because everyone is getting sick of team challenges, but they need to start dwindling the numbers if they want to be able to get through an episode and actually show all the food that was cooked by each individual.

They pull fake fish out of a net (really, producers?) to set up the teams. Antonia ends up on a team with Jamie and Tiffani, and she's kind of internally rolling her eyes and groaning. She's worked with them before, and it didn't go so well, so she's not looking forward to doing it again. Dale is just happy he's not on Marcel's team, given their dust-up last night. They will head out, two teams per boat, and see what happens.

There are a lot of "the sea was angry that day" shots as they head to their boats. The Susie E II will be transporting Team 2, which is Marcel, Angelo, and Tiffany, along with Team 4, which is Marcel, Fabio, and Blais. As they board, Angelo confesses that he's terrified of sharks, because he saw Jaws too many times, and he won't even swim in a pool. Will he bathe? Because that's about the same amount of danger. Look, when I saw Jaws, I was a little nervous about swimming in a pool or a lake too. But I was seven. Angelo be crazy.

Everyone on the Susie E II is suddenly an expert fisherman. Blais and Fabio are talking about what a great fishing spot it is, and how many fish they are likely to catch. Then Fabio is lecturing Marcel about how there are a lot of birds, so that's a good sign that there are also a lot of fish. And apparently, Fabio's father is on some national fishing team? Like for the Fishing Olympics? I think he just made that up. So they'll definitely catch a ton of fish, right off the bat, right? You guys have to help me out; I've never watched television before.

Over on the other boat, the Sea Wife IV, are Team 1, consisting of Dale, Carla, and Tre, along with the doomed Team 3 of Antonia, Jamie, and Tiffani. The captain gives them some instruction on how to snap the pole up and down for maximum effectiveness, and commands them not to pay attention to how people do it on other boats. I kind of want a whole episode just about this captain. Although I guess there's a ton of that sort of thing on A&E or Discovery. Dale interviews that his dad is quite the fisherman, so fishing reminds him of his dad. And there's even photos of Dale's dad holding various fish and little Dale with him. Aw. Dale. I feel like he's getting a winner's edit, not just in this episode, but overall. That reminds me of when a friend was putting together one of those rehearsal dinner slideshows for another friend (who shall remain nameless, although she's divorced now, so perhaps the point is moot), and she was complaining that the future husband was kind of white trash. And we were like, "What makes you say that?" And she said that every photo the parents gave her of the future husband as a kid, he was either in his underwear or holding a fish. Can't really argue with that. Carla confesses that despite being on fishing boats before, she's never "held the rod." Then she realizes what she just said and smiles goofily at Tre, who laughs. I love their team.

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