Over on Serious Eats the story is unfolding. Chef Robert Irvine of “Dinner: Impossible!” on the Food Network is apparently a fraud. A copy of his book I have here, an autobiography titled “Mission: Cook!”, is apparently full of lies and fabricated truths about his life, his training, and who knows what else.
I’ve gotten involved on Serious Eats myself, pointing out that the About Us page on Irvine’s own web site is now blank. The page now reads, “This page is under construction. Please check back later for an updated version.”
An admission of guilt? It sure looks that way from here.
Still, I’m kinda torn as to what to think about the man himself.If he’s lied to Food Network, if the book is a sham, if his resume isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, those things certainly need to be dealt with. If the show is suddenly and immediately cancelled, such a thing would be perfectly understandable.
But there’s something else that’s eating away at these thoughts.
Chef Robert Irvine is one of the better cooks, in fact, one of the better “personalities” Food Network has backed as of late.
In three seasons of “The Next Food Network Star” they’ve gotten one real star in Guy Fieri. The others, even the recent winner, are largely forgettable.
Looking around at the network’s schedule, there are a few chefs and cooks left that are actually worth watching.”Dinner: Impossible!”‘s basic concept, that of throwing Irvine into a situation where he had to cook for hundreds in a matter of 6 – 8 hours with zero notice of anything whatsoever, kinda punched things up a notch. I’ve found the show more than watchable, with the concept presenting a great level of intensity, tension and enthusiasm.
Too many cooking shows don’t go there. They’re boring. “Dinner: Impossible!” isn’t boring whatsoever.
Should Irvine come clean? Should he present a real portfolio and correct any wrongs? Should he take whatever consequences he’s given for any past transgressions?
Would I still watch a show about his culinary skills in the future?
At this point, I’ll have to say “Yes”.
I’m not sure if there’s anything that would yet make me change my mind about that.
We’ll just have to wait, and see how this turns out.