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November 11, 1999 - Image 14

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-11-11

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14A- The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 11, 1999

'Iron Chef' takes cuisine
seriously in TV cook-off

By Adlin Rosli
Daily Arts Writer
Within an hour two masters duel it
out to retain their honor and win the
ultimate victory as the best at what
they do on a Japanese show. No, it's
not some lost Akira Mifune samurai
movie, it's the Iron Chef! A cooking
show that brings together surreal dra-
matic music, documentary style pro-
files of contestants and dizzying cam-
erangles, "Iron Chef" brings you
the ultimate weekly cook-off.
The title of the show refers to four
top chefs who each are masters at dif-
ferent styles of cooking. The show
has already enjoyed over six years of
immense popularity in its native
Japan and has finally found its way on
basic cable
thanks toathe
good folks at The
Food Network.
Iron Chef Partially dubbed
and subtitled, the
*** show is hosted
Food Network by Chairman
Fridays at 10 p.m. Kaga, the man
responsible for
building the
kitchen where
the chefs duel.
Each week Kaga
introduces the
new contestant,
usually a star chef from somewhere,
and.allows the contestant to pick one
of the four Iron Chefs as their oppo-
nent.
Then Kaga unveils the secret theme
ingredient of the day. This can range
from something as simple as potatoes
to rare expensive forms of beef. At
the sound of a gong, the Iron Chef
and the contestant then scurry to use
their allocated one hour as best as
they can to make use of the day's
theme ingredient in their dishes.
The show is narrated throughout by
the chatter of four guest judges and a
comientator. This gives the show the
uncanny feeling of watching a WWF
wrestling match. Although at first the
comments and banter between the
judges on the cooking activities
seemed annoying, it actually grows
on 'you and becomes an essential part
ofhe charm of Iron Chef. The narra-
tion is dubbed, so there are plenty of
funny lines as a result of the transla-
tions. The experience is much like
watching a dubbed Kung Fu flick.
Each chef is clad in different outfits
wih colors that represent the style of
cooking they represent. Chef Italian,

Courtesy ofDreamwo as e F ,es
Jeremy Davies, Adam Goldberg, Edward Bums and Tom Sizemore relax before battle in "Saving Private Ryan."
Meorable 'Prvate Ryan
offers nothignew on DVD

By Ed Sholinsky
Daily Film Editor
People will notr
won Best Picture (
Love," for the reci
Private Ryan." And
travesty this is, no
widescreen on DVI
Though "Ryan"
great sound system
best it can on the
breathtaking action
Hanks) and compa
Damon).
What makes Ste
Courtsy of Fuj all-time war movie:
war film formula.

Famous restaurant chefs challenge television masters in "Iron Chef."

for example, proudly wears green, red
and white. They also possesses their
own unique personality and it's easy
to understand why this show has such
a cult following of fans with favorites
among the chefs. Iron Chef Italian,
Masahiko Kobe, for example is the
cocky trash talker of the group. Every
match he's been in is always full of
his charmingarrogance and slanders
aimed at the contestant.
Iron Chef Chen Kenichi is the
antithesis of Kobe as he is the humble
goofy one. Masaharu Morimoto is
the hot shot Japanese chef from New
York who brings an American per-
spective to all his Japanese dishes and
Iron Chef French is Horoyuki Sakai, a
man who looks like he should be in a
'70s police show.

There is seldom a dull moment
throughout any given episode of "Iron
Chef." From the beginning of the
show where it introduces each contes-
tant in a A&E-style mini-biography to
the suspense filled end where the
judges' choice of the winner, the
show is the perfect embodiment of
everything wacky and entertaining.
Food Network has been excellent
with bringing off beat cooking shows
to television. "Iron Chef" is an excel-
lent addition to other cult favorite
cooking shows the station has brought
to America's attention. The crowd that
has grown to love shows such as "The
Two Fat Ladies" and "Emeril Live"
will have no problem warming up to
the Power Rangers meets Julia Child
sensation of watching "Iron Chef."

take the motley con
cumstances and th
Spielberg, Rodat at
'Sid
The
Multicult
Sideshoi
Alexis D. Pate
Bard
One Native An
one Hispanic, on
black girl and oi
them together, an
mulitcultiboho tr
in background, th
in pursuit of oni
prize of half a mi
out by the genero
reason for the do
one politically d
to succeed. Initia
for money turns
into a hot-wired c
fights, ridicule an
Such is the casei
murder my
Multicultiboho S
about one black
become anything
moving aside the
seated luxuriously
Narrating most
"token black ma'
His friends call hi
dealing with whi
the name "Ichabo
forces the white

with style and heart.
Unfortunately, Spielberg failed to put any heart into the
remember this past year's Oscars for what making of the DVD. This proclaimed special edition has lit-
it was the very overrated "Shakespeare in tle special on it, with the exception of the film itself. At the
ord), but for what didn't win - "Saving end of the film Spielberg gives a speech about why you
I for those of you who don't realize what a should donate money to the New Orleans D-Day Musemm.
w you can check out "Ryan" in beautiful Easy for him to say - if he cares so much let him give-he
D. money from the DVD sales instead of having a pledge dri*
is better suited to the big screen, with a after a movie you've paid over $20 to own.
and a huge TV, DVD captures the film as Also on the DVD is a sometimes interesting mix of a mak-
small screen. "Ryan's bold visuals and ing of featurette with some of the human history of D-Day.
n come to life as Captain Miller (Tom Having real people recall what it was like storming the beach
ny try to rescue Private James Ryan (Matt in Normandy is a nice touch, but not enough for Dreamwodls
to really call this disc special.
ven Spielberg's "Ryan" one of the great What this film needs is a commentary rant with Spielbelg
s is the style with which he reconceives the telling the Weinsteins (the heads of Miramax whose bjig
Spielberg and screenwriter Robert Rodat money campaign won the Oscar for "Shakespeare in Love")
mpany of soldiers thrown together by cir- that he's gunning for them after they stole his Oscar. If n~t
he war trying to survive their mission, that, maybe him just telling where he came up with the vis
nd the talented cast carry out their mission al and visceral concept for the film.
s ow othcuture,
dignified, rather than inferior, light. April, is trying to be compassionate,
That's the problem with society. but lacks the skin color to under-
i~boho Regardless of what one may say, the stand the way many need to be
N multicultis are always being pushed understood. And lastly, Icky,,the
aside for the white man. But as Icky black man who abandoned his so
makes apparent at the onset of the concurs with the image black m
novel, things are about to change. He have for their fatherless black fami-
will be heard. lies.
nerican, one Asian, This listener, however, is not quite Yet together they band; together
ne white girl, one the willing type one may imagine. they resolve that they will make a
ne black man. Put He is the officer Lieutenant Bloom, difference. They were going to tear
id you've got your lured into Icky's home to be gagged, down those stereotypes that so con-
ibe. While diverse tied and held at gun-point while Icky veniently form a ceiling just below
ese five artists are spends the rest of the novel explain- the floor of the white upper-middle
e goal: The grand ing the dead body in the center of the class. Pate, as Icky, eloquently 'statos
llion dollars, doled room. The dialogue conveys Bloom's in the novel, "we all hoped there w
us Mr. Dewitt. The racism in that he doubts Icky simply a reason to have hope." They wore to
anation is to allow because he is not "white" He is transform the present society to one
isadvantaged artist ignorant of Icky's message and of his that stood for true equality.
Ily friends, the lust drive to change our racially hierar- While Pate's novel clearly has
this talented five chical society into something more many strengths, it is somewhat
Ian, culminating in reminiscent of true equality. flawed in length. Throughout the 241
d ultimately death. Pate's efforts to uplift the status of pages, Icky prolongs the climax of
in Alexis D. Pate's the black man is a problem analo- the story until almost the very end.
stery, "The gous to struggles by most races and While this usually serves the pur-
ideshow' a novel ethnicities today; his success, how- pose of added suspense, the'.story
k man's quest to ever, lies in the power of words. does tend to run on. However, if
but the sideshow, Much like Icky throughout the mys- Pate's true character is portray*
white man, who is tery, he abstains from any violence, through the fictional Icky, he pro-
on center-stage. instead employing his art in persua- vides his own self-criticism on this
of the story is the sion to be heard. Pate brings out the very point in the novel.
n," Ichabod Word. stereotypes of each culture in an Regardless of this flaw, Alexis D.
m "Icky," but when honest attempt to alleviate those pre- Pate succeeds in providing a symbol-
ite men he prefers conceived notions. ic novel about American society
d." He feels that it The Asian girl, Jenny, is a quiet today. Embracing honesty, irony, and
nan to see him in a young women who uses her sexuali- humor, Pate's satire, "The
ty to make a few extra dollars. The Multicultiboho Sideshow," sends a
black girl, Marci, is jealous of the message aiding many cultures facing
attention given to those white girls the struggle for equality in socie
lacking the "butt" that black women Working together as one multijeulti-
are endowed with. The Native boho tribe, the one goal, justice, can
American, Herm, is an earth-loving, hopefully be accomplished.
yet intimidating man. The white girl, - Nicole Dabbous

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