Food Network Challenge

Season 7 Episode 15

Extreme Cakes

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Jul 15, 2007 on Food Network
out of 10
User Rating
2 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Extreme Cakes
Four professional cake decorators elevate cake to an intense (and some would say insane) level. Three stars from the Food Network show Ace of Cakes serve as judges.

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  • The only thing "extreme" about this show was the boredom!

    Extreme: Going to great or exaggerated lengths. - -

    The idea was to create an "extreme" cake, without limiting the contestants to anything beyond that single word.

    Of the four entries, only one marginally fit the above definition, and that was Elisa Strauss' "Revenge of the Sock Monkey" cake, which was a larger, more imposing/threatening version of her cuter sock puppet cake from a previous Challenge (looking at Ms.Strauss, you wouldn't think this sweet-looking woman could come up with such a demonic idea!). On the other hand, her reappearance with the same idea - - however modified - - seemed to reek of the judges wanting her to succeed so they could give her the award that she seemed to deserve from that prior contest.

    Marred by errors, I was amazed that any of these professionals managed to complete their cakes. (I also wonder *why* they would bother to do something like this, since they usually have days, if not weeks and months, to prepare their goods for their customers; "quality" isn't a race, folks! If the $10,000 prize seems too good to pass up, consider this: Failure may mean fewer customers! What is that worth in the long run?)

    Jorg Amsler's switchblade cake was an interesting idea, but the gimmicks were too flashy, if not outright dangerous, and distracted from the cake, itself. It was also difficult to figure out what it was without constant explanation!

    Michelle Garcia's mobile (three cakes balancing in mid-air) was wonderfully conceived, but, clearly, she hadn't tested the idea on a smaller scale, or she would have realized there was no way it would work; her very strong assistant could barely hold one of the three cakes with two hands! The cakes were beautiful, though (somehow, I think the grungy, tatooed, Ms Garcia, and the more genteel-looking Ms Strauss were switched at birth!).

    Stephen Maronian's more pastoral setting, complete with a "dachshund" spewing sparks from its butt, was cute, but I saw nothing "extreme" about it.

    And shame on the Food Network's website for not posting the results or pictures of the final works! With the advent of Tivo and similar re-viewing video, they shouldn't be concerned with copyright infringement, because it's well out of their hands, anyway! Besides, posting it on their site gives proof of the contestants works. And, in the cases of destroyed works, at least the contestant would have had a picture of it before disaster struck.

    But, I digress!

    In general, all these "Challenge" shows could easily be cut to a half-hour, which would viewers less chance of "escaping" via channel surfing! I gave it a "six" only because I can appreciate the work that went into the designs, but this particular show was too long and had no real drama to it.moreless

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