An Americanized version of the original Japanese TV series having to do with culinary competition set in a TV studio where one chef competes against others for an opportunity to eventually ... See full summary »
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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Himself - Commentator / ... (237 episodes, 2004-2014)
...
 The Chairman (236 episodes, 2004-2014)
Kevin Brauch ...
 Himself - Floor Reporter / ... (231 episodes, 2004-2014)
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An Americanized version of the original Japanese TV series having to do with culinary competition set in a TV studio where one chef competes against others for an opportunity to eventually receive the title of Iron Chef which is a direct reference to being the very best in every area of the culinary fields. The number of chefs who can actually make this claim are very few and far between one another.

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TV-G
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16 January 2005 (USA)  »

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Top Chef  »

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Every time someone is shown on camera pouring a liquid, a bubbling sound is added. See more »

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Has none of the charm of the original
15 April 2005 | by (MO) – See all my reviews

Like many imports into American television Iron Chef America is a pathetic shadow of the original. Mark Dacascos, as The Chairman, is the nephew of the Japan's Chairman Kaga but exhibits not a soupcon of the self-mocking humor of his uncle. Dacascos is a lauded martial arts expert but in this context his posturing is hokey in the extreme. Alton Brown, though interesting on Good Eats, as sole commentator for Iron Chef America is boring as is the roving reporter. The two commentators, Kenji Fukui and Yukio Hattori, along with the guest commentators/judges are key to the original show's appeal. The snappy rapport of Fukuisan, Doc, and many of the frequent guests entertains as they make astute observations, lame jokes, and bicker affably. The Japanese Iron Chefs are entertaining, have engaging personalities, and actually take a hand in the cooking of every dish themselves. Yes, they have assistants but that is just what they do, assist, not the preparation of entire dishes. As for the American impostors, Flay displays symptoms of smugness and arrogance and Batalli is sweet but unappealing. Morimoto is still a great Iron Chef but he should have followed Wolfgang Puck's lead and gotten out of this debacle while he still had his dignity. I understand that in a restaurant preparing the food is not their role but this is a cooking competition and every dish should be basically prepared by the chef, but these American Iron Chefs do not even take a hand in many of the dishes which are expertly prepared by their talented pastry chefs, sous-chefs and/or assistants. These talented underlings and some of the guest competitors are the only redeeming quality this show offers and they do some amazing things. The Japanese judges have relatively unbiased palates and are always polite even as they are voicing their criticisms. They also express themselves beautifully and savor the nuances of the dishes. Food Network should choose judges who have a more cosmopolitan palate. The job of a critic is to be discerning not to be mean-spirited and sarcastic. You can call a spade a spade without calling it a darned old shovel. Brutal honesty is not a virtue I care to see promoted. Much of the personality of the Japanese import must be credited to the actors who performed the voice overs. They must have had a ball in taping as the dialogue is frequently ridiculous, but ridiculously entertaining!


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