Food Network’s Iron Chef America is much like the original Iron Chef: have two chefs complete courses revolving around a secret ingredient, with a campy actor as a host. While the original Chairman Kaga took the show to campy levels of ridiculousness, the “Chairman’s nephew,” actor Mark Decascos, tries to prove that he can be just as ridiculous by dramatically screaming out every single ingredient on Iron Chef America.
But when the Chairman’s nephew starts yelling “CHICKEN!” and “FROZEN PEAS!” is when you start realizing those producers are less about using secret ingredients and more about getting the leftover stock from Rachael Ray’s 30-Minute Meals. The Japanese show featured natto and live turtles slaughtered on camera, and for the American version we get “chicken?” Really? Tune in next week, when we can hear the Chairman scream such mysterious ingredients like “FROZEN PIZZA!” Or “MASHED POTATOES!” Or for the series finale: “HIGH! FRUCTOSE! CORN! SYRUP!”