The current head chef of Araxi is among the bigwigs from up north judging the guys on their performance tonight. Orders start pouring in, and they start reading off the tickets. Amanda says that Kevin makes her nervous and she really wants to do a good job for him. So what does she do? Gives him undercooked scallops. Repeatedly. So that he has to make her and Van swap places. Robert claims that he's going to bring the pain, which leads to a footage of him sort of wiggling and plodding around. I didn't need that. Thanks. Dave's got the first apps out. Sabrina interviews that they are heading to the "pooper" fast. Oh how I missed Sabrina's colloquial little turns of phrase.
Gordon stands around and gives a play by play to the cameras. I kind of miss when he just rails into people. Dave's almost done with apps, but they are very low on mushrooms. Which leads to a ridiculous fight where Robert acts like a baby because Dave was trying to cover his ass and put out a decent product at the same time. Seriously, I just want to punch Robert's smug face. Is that so wrong? If they bring him back again for anything I am DONE with this show for good. I swear. Kevin's diners aren't all that happy with his crunchy risotto. HOW DO THEY NOT KNOW HOW TO COOK RISOTTO???? It's on Amanda. He's regretting that decision to pick her now. Van's going to micromanage her. Van says he's getting Gordon flashbacks from Kevin, and we're treated to Gordon riding Van's ass all season.
Dave's already on to entrees. But Ariel overcooks some venison, which only holds them up for a couple minutes. Kevin gets the Araxi ticket and tells them not to screw it up. Kevin calls out different temperatures and confuses Amanda, which is not hard to do. Even Gordon seems to take note of Kevin's mixed messages. Amanda gets more flustered, and then something seems to be on fire in Amanda's pan. Not a good sign. Still, it's not that far behind, since it is 8:45. That actually seems to be a quick turn around by Hell's Kitchen standards. Kevin was about to lose it, and then decided to go over and actually help everyone, which is actually kind of a decent thing to do.
Dave's got four tables left, and Kevin's got six. Of course, Ariel starts sending out some undercooked food. Which gets Gordon mad. This slip-up ties up both teams. But then it is all quickly resolved. Dave finishes first and hugs everyone, Kevin finishes closely behind and is happy.
Back upstairs, Dave is smoking thinking he wasn't quite as strong. Kevin seems to think that this was even more stressful than waiting for his baby to be born. They get a phone call to go down to Gordon's office. Gordon says that he's proud of both of them, and that the feedback from the customers made this the closest decision EVER on Hell's Kitchen. Isn't it that way every season? He has them both step up to their doors for the prolonged door opening sequence. I notice that while Dave's one hand is broken, his other hand is all beaten to hell as well. Is he just prone to cutting/burning himself? Or is this just a fluke? I can't get a good enough look at Kevin's hands to see if this is just par for the Hell's Kitchen course.