Preheat Your TV

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I think I’m starting to show my age because I remember when the E! True Hollywood Story was interesting. It was gossipy, smarmy, histrionic, and total brain candy. Each commercial break was punctuated by a “And then it all fell apart!” or “But friendship alone wasn’t enough to keep her from spiraling to her destruction!” because there was no way you were flipping over to Pop-Up Videos with that sort of temptation waiting for you just beyond half-a-dozen singing Quiznos rats. You HAD to know what went on behind the scenes of Beverly Hills 90210 — was Shannen really a bitch? Did Jason Priestley sleep with that gel in? How old was Gabrielle Cateris — 30? 35? 42?

And now, Rachael Ray? How…pedestrian. I mean, I get that she’s a huge success and has managed to get Bill Clinton on her show to talk childhood obesity as well show you how to successfully dress for your body type, but still. I mean, we’ve already heard it all — the successful yet dubious cooking show, the successful yet very loud talk show, the husband, the dogs, the not being a chef, the mother, the jobs, the big mouth. What new things are we going to learn, really? That she was a cheerleader? Not much of surprise there — we know she learned how to scream somewhere. If you care, this airs Sunday, May 5th.

In other food television news, the hungrily dedicated posters at Television Without Pity are reporting that the new season of Bravo’s Top Chef will premiere on June 13th.

The third season of this competitive cooking reality show was filmed in Miami and, according to Bravo execs, will feature “the most seasoned” cheftestants yet. All food puns aside, I think that might be their way of promising that there will be no more head shaving. And maybe no more offers to pee on fellow cheftestants. I hope.

Going fishhead-to-fishhead with Top Chef this summer is FOX’s Hell’s Kitchen. Also returning for its third season, the Gordon Ramsay competitive cooking reality show is loud, ridiculous, and almost entirely bleeped. It’s also pretty awesome, and set to premiere on June 4th.

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About the Author ()

A former picky eater, Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic is a writer, editor, and lapsed cheesemonger in the San Francisco Bay Area. A culinary school grad with an English lit degree, she has written for CNN.com, MSNBC.com, Popular Science, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Boston Globe. Additionally, she has been writing for KQED's Bay Area Bites since its inception and is the website editor for KQED's Emmy-award winning show "Check, Please! Bay Area." Stephanie was an original recapper at Television Without Pity and worked on a line of cookbooks for William-Sonoma as well as in the back kitchen of a Jacques Pépin cooking show. Her first book, SUFFERING SUCCOTASH: A Picky Eater's Quest To Understand Why We Hate the Foods We Hate (Perigee Books, 2012) is a non-fiction narrative and a heartfelt and humorous exposé on the inner lives of picky eaters that Scientific American called "hilarious" and "the perfect popular science book for a reader that doesn't think he or she wants to read a popular science book." Stephanie lives in Menlo Park with her husband, three-year-old son, assorted cats, and has been blogging at The Grub Report for over a decade. Follow her on Twitter at @grubreport
  • Jennifer Maiser

    cool – 2 summertime food shows to look forward to an otherwise repeat-centric season.