Hosea takes Top Chef 5 title from Stefan, Carla

Top Chef‘s fifth season is over, and Stefan Richter did not win the $100,000 prize. That seems to be the headline, because Stefan was ridiculously strong all season and seemed like the inevitable winner. Based upon the season’s arc–Stefan’s consistency, Carla’s ascension–the actual winner, Hosea Rosenberg, is kind of confusing, at best. Hosea wasn’t weak, but he was more notable this season for his romance with Leah.

Hosea won one quickfire challenge and two elimination challenges; he was in the top two other times, and landed in the bottom four times, a pretty even record. Stefan, on the other hand, won four quickfires and four elimination challenges, was in the top group two times, and was in the bottom group three times. Carla had one quickfire win and three elimination wins, and was in the top twice and the bottom three times.

“Ultimately we made our decision based on how well the meal tasted from start to finish,” Tom Colicchio explained, and it seemed like Stefan’s weak dessert in the final four-course meal was his downfall. Hosea did not make dessert.

Most finales have a promising chef who stumble, and this time, it was Carla, who worked with Casey Thompson from season three as her sous chef. Besides a failed soufflé that Carla didn’t even serve, Casey’s influence–and Carla’s willingness to let Casey influence her–put her into third place. “It seems you let your sous chef talk you out of cooking the food that got you to the finale, and I’m not quite sure I understand that,” Tom Colicchio told her.

Determining who’s been eliminated from that night’s episode is increasingly easy, as they have red, teary eyes, or seem dejected. Carla didn’t seem to be crying, but she didn’t seem to be elated, either.

Hosea, however, was uncharacteristically arrogant. During the interview segments, Hosea all but hauled out his penis to challenge Stefan to a duel, constantly referring to Stefan as his competition and implicitly suggesting Carla was not even in the game.

Stefan was even cockier and bitchier than usual in his interviews than he has been before, and the results were hysterical. Talking about choosing season two runner-up Marcel Vigneron as his sous chef, Stefan said Marcel is “a great chef,” but then said, “he’s a bit of a twat, but who’s not?”

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.

Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.