6/13/2012 12:35:00 PM

The Week in Gordon Ramsay: Rhinos, Prison Slams and More

Last week Gordon Ramsay became the newest voice in prison reform, labeling British penitentiaries as “easy” and “a joke.”

Speaking to The Guardian (during an interview he would eventually cut short), he said that while filming his British reality show, Gordon Ramsay Behind Bars, he discovered that some inmates can be quite lazy. And that made him feel (you guessed it)…“Angry, yes, clearly – but quite embarrassed, really. I thought we were a nation of grafters; I thought we had the spirit of working harder than anyone," he said.

Perhaps Gordo’s anger at those who have been secluded from society and forced to live in a place where a toilet doubles as a nightstand/indoor-patio chair was a tad displaced; after all he had just ended a bitter financial struggle with a family member.

On June 9, we learned that Ramsay had to loan his company, Gordon Ramsay Holdings, over £4 million to counter losses from firing his father-in-law (seriously).

But Gordo’s personal struggles did nothing to slow his television successes. Monday’s episodes of Hell’s Kitchen and MasterChef went head-to-head with game six of the Stanley Cup Finals and both episodes topped hockey in the ratings. Ramsay proved once and for all that Americans prefer a screaming British chef and his bumbling underlings to Canadians flailing around on skates any day.

While Hell’s Kitchen doesn’t have the fist fights and body checks that make hockey so engaging, it does have its fair share of almost-fights, empty threats and of course, under-bus-throwing.

Consider the verbal assault contestant Barbie Marshall endured from teammate Kimmie Willis after Marshall woke Willis up early in the morning: “You wanna get choked out, you wanna get <bleeped> choked out?” screamed Willis, who could one day be “head chef” at Gordon Ramsay Steak at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas.

Hockey never had a chance.

Later, the contestants watched as immigrants were sworn in as American citizens inside Hell’s Kitchen (again, seriously) and were treated to a patriotic HK welcome meal.

Their first American experience included a British guy screaming, “I’d rather flee the country,” after tasting a burnt pizza.

The patriotism continued at dinner when contestants were asked to cook for Marines, firefighters and other American heroes. And when portly Clemenza Caserta couldn’t get his beef wellington cooked up to Gordon Ramsay standards, well, let’s just say the bully in Gordo came out.

“BABY RHINO SCREWS THE MARINES!” Ramsay shouted. Oooo, harsh. Caserta’s going to need an appointment with a dermatologist, because that was obviously this week’s CLASSIC. GORDO. BURN. Interestingly enough, Ramsay would later show how slight tonal changes can change the meaning of otherwise insulting words.

On MasterChef, Ramsay playfully jeered celebrating finalist David Martinez, saying, “You little Rhinocerous.”

See how it seems diff… actually, no, on second thought that was also pretty mean.

“Rhinocerous” is actually one of the least weird things uttered by Ramsay this week. He seems to use MasterChef as an experiment in rhetorical whimsy. For instance, when contestants set foot inside the MasterChef kitchen for the first time, their fearless leader channeled Willy Wonka in his description of the place.

“This kitchen is your culinary theater of dreams,” Ramsay said. Of course, for some contestants it, and Gordo, became their WORST NIGHTMARES.

One moment seemed so magical for contestant Helene Leeds, it was almost dream-like. As fire erupted at her kitchen station, Ramsay swooped in, swiping a flaming pan from her oven and removing it to safety.“I yell fire and chef Ramsay comes over so valiantly, like a knight in shining armor,” Leeds said.

But Ramsay wasn’t having it. She might have survived the fire, but surviving Gordo’s a different story.

“I almost burned my hand,” Ramsay said. “That’s not funny, seriously, you’ve got your neck in a noose.”

And that’s how Gordon Ramsay runs a prison. 


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