"He's way worse than Simon Cowell," one contestant says of celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay in the May 30 premiere of this overheated new series. Indeed, the foul-mouthed Ramsay makes the harsh American Idol judge sound like a diplomat.
Ramsay, a big-time restaurateur and television personality in Britain, opens a fancy eatery in Hollywood. For the sake of unscripted TV drama, he assembles a 12-person cooking corps with varying degrees of experience and has them compete in the high-pressure atmosphere for the chance to run a restaurant of their own.
The show could have been a spicy improvement on NBC's defunct The Restaurant, but Ramsay spoils it with too much sulfur. Though his bleep-filled rants are supposed to bring out the best in his staff, they seem like blatant workplace harassment. When he turns his ire on the customers, it's even harder to stomach.