MasterChef (American TV series)

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MasterChef
MasterChef Logo & Wordmark.svg
GenreCookery
Created byFranc Roddam
Directed byRich Kim
Judges
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons11
No. of episodes207
Production
Executive producers
Producers
  • Justin Brooks
  • Jefferson Strouse
Running time42 minutes
Production companiesOne Potato Two Potato
Reveille Productions (2010–12)
Shine America (2012–14)
Endemol Shine North America (2015–)
Release
Original networkFox
Picture format480i (SDTV)
720p (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital 5.1
Original releaseJuly 27, 2010 (2010-07-27) –
present
Chronology
Related showsMasterChef Junior
External links
Website

MasterChef is an American competitive cooking reality TV show based on the British series of the same name, open to amateur and home chefs.[1] Produced by Endemol Shine North America and One Potato Two Potato, it debuted on July 27, 2010 on the Fox network, following the professional cooking competition series Hell's Kitchen.[2]

For the first five seasons, the series starred celebrity chefs Gordon Ramsay (the co-creator of the series and Hell's Kitchen), Graham Elliot and restaurateur Joe Bastianich.[3] From seasons six through eight, pastry chef Christina Tosi temporarily replaced Bastianich.[4] On season seven, Elliot departed as a judge, and in place of a third judge, there were a series of guest judges, one of which was Aarón Sanchez. Since season eight, Sanchez joined as a regular judge.[5] In season nine, Bastianich returned as a regular judge, replacing Tosi. On September 19, 2018, it was announced that the series had been renewed for a tenth season, which premiered on May 29, 2019 with Ramsay, Sanchez, and Bastianich returning as judges.[6][7][8][9]

An eleventh season, subtitled Legends, premiered on June 2, 2021.[10][11] Ramsay, Sanchez, and Bastianich returned as judges for the season.[11]

Format[edit]

MasterChef is based on the British BBC series MasterChef. The competition takes place in the MasterChef soundstage located in Los Angeles, CA which includes a large kitchen area with several cooking stations which is overlooked by a balcony, a well-stocked pantry, a freezer/fridge area and a fine-dining restaurant/seating dining area room used for certain challenges.

While the particular format of the season has slightly varied over the years, the following challenges have all been regularly featured:

  • Skills Test: Cooks are challenged to perform a list of common cooking techniques or styles, or to replicate a particular cooking method of a dish (i.e. steaks done to an exact wellness). This type of test is also sometimes used as an Elimination Test.
  • Mystery Box: Cooks are all given a box with the same ingredients and must use only those ingredients to create a dish within a fixed amount of time. The judges will select three dishes based on visual appearance and technique alone to taste, and from these three select one winner who usually gains an advantage of some type in the elimination test.
  • Elimination Test: After the challenge is explained, judges evaluate all dishes based on taste and visual appeal. The judges nominate the worst dishes for elimination and criticize them before eliminating at least one contestant.
  • Team Challenge: The cooks are split into teams by either team captains or the judges. They often occur in a restaurant takeover or pop-up restaurant taking the place of the staff of a particular restaurant. Diners taste both meals and vote for their favorite. The winning team advances, while the losing team will participate in the Pressure Test or face elimination based on the teams' performance.
  • Pressure Test: Another form of the Elimination Test, in which losing team members compete against each other to make a standard dish within a very limited amount of time that requires a great degree of cooking finesse. Each dish is judged on taste, visual appeal and technique, and the losing chef is eliminated.

Once the competition is reduced to either the final two or three competitors, the finalists will compete against each other in a three-course cook-off. All courses of the meal are judged and an overall winner is crowned. The winner of each season wins $250,000, a MasterChef trophy, and the title of MasterChef. Some seasons have also added other prizes such as a cookbook deal.

Judges[edit]

Season Judge 1 Judge 2 Judge 3
1 Gordon Ramsay Graham Elliot Joe Bastianich
2
3
4
5
6 Christina Tosi
7 Guest judges [a]
8 Aarón Sanchez
9 Joe Bastianich
10
11
Notes
  1. ^ The guest judges rotated between Sanchez, Wolfgang Puck, Edward Lee, Kevin Sbraga, Richard Blais, and Daniel Boulud

Series overview[edit]

SeasonContestantsEpisodesOriginally airedWinnerRunner(s)-upThird place
First airedLast aired
11413July 27, 2010 (2010-07-27)September 15, 2010 (2010-09-15)Whitney MillerDavid MillerN/A
21820June 6, 2011 (2011-06-06)August 16, 2011 (2011-08-16)Jennifer BehmAdrien NietoChristian Collins
31820June 4, 2012 (2012-06-04)September 10, 2012 (2012-09-10)Christine HàJosh MarksBecky Reams
41925May 22, 2013 (2013-05-22)September 11, 2013 (2013-09-11)Luca ManfèNatasha CrnjacJessie Lysiak
52219May 26, 2014 (2014-05-26)September 15, 2014 (2014-09-15)Courtney LapresiElizabeth CauvelLeslie Gilliams
62220May 20, 2015 (2015-05-20)September 16, 2015 (2015-09-16)Claudia SandovalDerrick PeltzStephen Lee
72019June 1, 2016 (2016-06-01)September 14, 2016 (2016-09-14)Shaun O'NealeBrandi Mudd & David WilliamsN/A
82021May 31, 2017 (2017-05-31)September 20, 2017 (2017-09-20)Dino Angelo LucianoEboni Henry & Jason WangN/A
92423May 30, 2018 (2018-05-30)September 19, 2018 (2018-09-19)Gerron HurtAshley Mincey & Cesar CanoN/A
102025May 29, 2019 (2019-05-29)September 18, 2019 (2019-09-18)Dorian HunterSarah FahertyNick DiGiovanni
1115[11]18[12]June 2, 2021 (2021-06-02)TBATBATBATBA

Specials[edit]

Note: Bold indicates the winner(s) of the challenge.

MasterChef Celebrity Showdown (aired January 18, 2016)[13]

MasterChef Celebrity Showdown (aired January 2, 2017)[14]

MasterChef Celebrity Family Showdown (aired May 15, 2019 and May 22, 2019)[15]

Broadcast[edit]

Season one aired as a summer series initially on Tuesday nights at 9:00 p.m. ET, debuting on July 27, 2010; it later moved to Wednesday nights at 8:00 p.m. ET on August 18.

On September 7, 2010, MasterChef was renewed for a second season,[16] which started with a two-night premiere on June 6, 2011.

On October 6, 2011, MasterChef was renewed for a third season, which started with a two-night premiere on June 4, 2012, following Hell's Kitchen.[17][18]

On July 23, 2012, MasterChef was renewed for a fourth season,[19][20] which premiered on May 22, 2013.[21]

On May 10, 2013, Fox renewed MasterChef for an additional two seasons, which extended the show to at least six seasons.[22]

On July 22, 2015, Fox renewed MasterChef for a seventh season.[23]

Reception[edit]

Critical[edit]

The premiere episode received mixed reviews from major newspapers and online review websites, with reviews commenting that it was entertaining, but criticized the emotional aspect. The Los Angeles Times claimed[24] the contestants' back stories were "blown up," which referred to their dramatization.[24] A Reuters reviewer explained the show "manages to be hugely entertaining and involving thanks mainly to the judges’ personalities and the ability of the producers to spot emotionally charged stories."[24] The Globe and Mail said "the contrived sentimentality of it is, frankly, vomitous" referring to the emotion in contestants' reactions.[24]

The program also attracted negative attention in season two when Agence France-Presse journalist Alex Ogle discovered that the producers doctored a crowd scene said to be of "thousands upon thousands lined up" to audition for the program.[25][26] In post-production, portions of the scene were replicated so as to make the crowd look larger than it actually was, as evidenced by multiple appearances by especially noticeable people in the scene.[25][26]

Ratings[edit]

Season Episodes Premiered Ended TV season Time slot (ET) Season averages (Live + SD)
Date Premiere viewers
(millions)
Date Finale viewers
(millions)
Viewers (millions) 18-49 rating
1 13 July 27, 2010 5.75[27] September 15, 2010 4.81[27] 2010 Tuesday 9:00pm (1–3)
Wednesday 8:00pm (4–13)
5.26[27] 2.3[27]
2 20 June 6, 2011 4.40[28] August 16, 2011 7.12[28] 2011 Monday 9:00 pm 5.27[28] 2.2[28]
Tuesday 9:00 pm 5.35[28] 2.2[28]
3 June 4, 2012 5.10[29] September 10, 2012 6.52[29] 2012 Monday 9:00 pm 5.84[29] 2.5[29]
Tuesday 9:00 pm 5.67[29] 2.4[29]
4 25 May 22, 2013 5.30[30] September 11, 2013 6.31[30] 2013 Wednesday 8:00 pm 5.63[30] 2.3[30]
5 19 May 26, 2014 4.26[31] September 15, 2014 5.56[31] 2014 Monday 8:00 pm 5.43[31] 1.9[31]
6 20 May 20, 2015 3.39[32] September 16, 2015 4.69[32] 2015 Wednesday 8:00 pm 4.56[32] 1.5[32]
7 19 June 1, 2016 3.81[33] September 14, 2016 4.36[33] 2016 4.03[33] 1.3[33]
8 21 May 31, 2017 3.67[34] September 20, 2017 4.14[34] 2017 3.62[34] 1.1[34]
9 23 May 30, 2018 3.52[35] September 19, 2018 3.56[36] 2018 3.52[35] 1.0[35]
10 25 May 29, 2019 3.14[37] September 18, 2019 3.17[38] 2019 Wednesday 8:00pm (1-4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20–25)
Thursday 8:00pm (5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19)
3.06[39] 0.8[39]
11 18[12] June 2, 2021 2.55[40] TBD TBD 2021 Wednesday 8:00pm TBD TBD

Earlier American adaptation[edit]

West 175 Productions[41] produced an earlier American adaptation, MasterChef USA, broadcast on PBS from 2000 to 2001. The series format was based directly on BBC's MasterChef and lasted 28 episodes over two seasons. It was hosted by British chef Gary Rhodes, who hosted the UK version of MasterChef in 2001.

Kitchenware[edit]

In 2011, Reveille Productions and Shine TV, announced licensing deals with kitchenware manufacturers The Cookware Company, Triple Loop Housewares, Global Knives, and Kidsline to produce MasterChef-branded cookware, including stainless steel pans, knives, kitchen appliances, and children's cooking sets. The branded products were given to contestants on the television show to use during challenges.[42] The show changed its branding in 2013 to reflect its expanded focus on consumer products in addition to the television shows.[43] In 2018, Shine America hired Brand Central as their licensing agency,[44] and more branded products, including barbecue tools from Unibrands and children's cooking sets from Wicked Cool Toys, were announced.[45]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Fox orders 'Idol'-style cooking competition". Archived from the original on January 27, 2010. Retrieved July 21, 2010.
  2. ^ "Master chief USA Teaser". TV Tonight.com. June 21, 2010. Archived from the original on June 24, 2010. Retrieved June 21, 2010.
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  4. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (January 13, 2015). "'MasterChef Junior' Renewed For Season 4, Mataiasi Kalou Joins As New Judge". Archived from the original on November 27, 2015. Retrieved November 13, 2015.
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  13. ^ Maglio, Tony (December 18, 2015). "Fox to air 'MasterChef Celebrity Showdown' in January". TheWrap. Archived from the original on May 1, 2016. Retrieved July 6, 2016.
  14. ^ "An All-New "MasterChef Celebrity Showdown" Airs Monday, January 2, On Fox". Fox. Archived from the original on January 4, 2017. Retrieved January 4, 2017.
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  45. ^ "'Masterchef' Debuts Kitchenware (Exclusive)". licenseglobal.com. March 3, 2016.

External links[edit]