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MasterChef - Series Seven - BBC One - Review

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Written by : published Wednesday 13th April 2011

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Watch MasterChef Online Now.


I like to think of myself as a bit of a comedy connoisseur, especially when it comes to television. I’ve always liked a mix of old and new, The Day Today and The Thick of It, Steptoe and Son and Fist of Fun. I’m also a bit of nerd when it comes to the BBC, and like the four I’ve mentioned above the BBC makes in my opinion, some of the best television comedy in the world. 

So imagine my delight when the BBC begins to broadcast another series of the hilarious MasterChef, which continues tonight on BBC One at 9pm BST. There are many people who I feel wrongly classify this as a “cookery” programme, but sitting through one hour of it, will convince you that it is top draw British humour.

The new series has also had some more money thrown at it, rather than being filmed in what looked like a Domestic Science kitchen in a comprehensive school for the previous series. They have now moved into what can only be described as a sinister part kitchen, part cathedral. You almost expect the camera to track outside the building to reveal some Orwellian brutalist structure with “Ministry of Hunger” written in stern concrete letters on its side.

All these combined help to make possibly the weirdest hour of television currently being broadcast. The contestants seem hell-bent on removing various extremities with a very sharp knife every week. One contestant in particular revealed, when his commitment to the competition was questioned, a tattoo of the programme logo on his chest.

Other contestants seem driven to produce the most obscure plates of food I’ve ever seen. Tim, an American who has a specialism in Japanese cooking, always manages to find a way of taking Japanese cuisine and smashing into some completely unrelated food culture, and regardless of the results I still can’t get past how ridiculously similar he is to Garth out of Wayne’s World

Most of the shows laughs however are produced by the judges, John Torode, who only likes something if everybody else thinks it’s rubbish, and Gregg Wallace, an “ingredients expert” who always take the extra time to mentally undress his food before he eats it. When they’re not shouting or discussing the contestants in an annoyingly ambiguous way, they can often be found spying on the contestants as they cook, hiding cunningly behind a well placed wok or colander.

MasterChef has also managed to perfect what many shows before and since have never managed to achieve. The flawless, stating the obvious piece to camera, in which a judge or contestant will share the most starkly obvious piece of information with the audience, such as “If I leave that in the oven too long then it’ll be ruined” or my personal favourite, “If I don’t leave that in the oven long enough it’ll be raw”.

MasterChef then is one of those programmes where you have no idea why you watch it (unless you like cooking that is). It truly is compulsive viewing, not necessarily for the right reasons, but compulsive none the less.

Watch episodes from series seven now.


About the author Peter Crowther

Peter Crowther

My name is Peter Crowther. I'm currently a Broadcast Journalism student at the University of Huddersfield, a Broadcast Assistant at BBC Birmingham and now a TV review writer for thetvking.com.

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