Hell’s Kitchen 2 is looking to be the first reality hit of this summer. The series debuted with an average of 6.7 million viewers last week, roughly the same as last year, but was watched by an average of 7.4 million viewers Monday night, a significant increase.
Meanwhile, Hell’s Kitchen star Gordon Ramsay was awarded $138,000 in damages by a UK court from The Evening Standard. The newspaper “claimed in November that parts of Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares — in which Ramsay helps save failing restaurants — had been exaggerated to make an average restaurant look like a health hazard,” the AP reports. The paper also “claimed the program had put an incompetent chef into place at” a restaurant that “was featured in one episode.”
Ramsay said, “I won’t let people write anything they want to about me. Even I have limits and on this occasion the line was crossed. I am satisfied with today’s apology and am looking forward to future series of ‘Kitchen Nightmares.'”
Covering reality television in a country where libel is much easier to prove must be a lot more difficult. For one, I might not be able to just call reality TV whores that unless I’d actually offered them money in exchange for something. Nor could one be, I imagine, an asshat TV critic who makes unsubtantiated claims about the veracity of a reality TV show.