Padma tells them to send in Preeti and Laurine and asks Mike I. to return with the losers. He's surprised, and interviews that he's livid right now because he was in the winner's bracket. When he announces it in the Stew Room, they are surprised as well, but I am loving it! Once they are out there, Colicchio says that it was a team challenge, and he notes that Mike I. seems pissed more than disappointed. Mike I. still doesn't get it and says that when he saw his partner had the dish under control, he decided to do something else to help the team. He doesn't seem to get that he's not being punished for making his own dish; he's being punished because the dish that he made sucked balls. Mark Peel totally steps up and grouchily says that the dish was bland and the shrimp were undercooked. Mike I. stutters that he wasn't sure about serving it himself and Padma busts in, "Then you shouldn't have served it." Ha! Padma! Man, the judges are on fire tonight. I feel like there was a lot more of Mike I's bitchfest than what we were shown, because the judges are downright prickly towards him.
Gail explains that they can only judge the food they were given, and the Greek salad didn't have any acid or flavor. Wow, I really think Mike I. put up more of a fight because the judges are not usually this defensive. Maybe I'm biased because I kind of hate the dude. Anyway, Mike I. finally says that he's angry at himself and he won't stumble again.
Colicchio moves on to Preeti and Laurine. He wants to know who originally came up with the idea to make pasta salad. They both refuse to throw the other to the wolves, even though Colicchio presses them. Laurine does admit that their ingredients were not the best, and she would have rather had fresh than canned, but Colicchio points out that they all had the same pantry to work from. Preeti thought the dish was good and flavorful and Colicchio is puzzled. She asks if clam chowder on a hot day is more inventive, and Colicchio says it's not but it was a better version of chowder than their version of pasta salad. Ouch. This is a nasty one. Laurine doesn't think the pasta salad was a winning dish, but it did satisfy a niche in the menu, and she kind of forgot it was a competition. She immediately realizes how dumb that sounds and tries to backtrack. Mark wants them to decide which chef is better of the two, and neither will say anything, which is probably smart, but oh, so uncomfortable to watch. Padma offers to let them both go home and Preeti says they should both stay. Padma's like, "Uh, no." Colicchio feels like they each just want to get by and not win, because they're not going big. Finally, FINALLY, Padma dismisses them.