The Chef Show

TV review by
Marty Brown, Common Sense Media
The Chef Show TV Poster Image
Movie-based reality cooking series is fun but a bit bland.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The most prevalent positive message is that anyone can learn to cook, especially grilled cheese sandwiches.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The hosts and guests are all successful people in their fields, but The Chef Show doesn't really get into their stories. Roy Choi's story in particular would be an interesting addition.

Violence
Sex
Language

The Chef Show uses profanity judiciously, but since filming takes place in casual settings among friends, it does come out here and there. Curses include "f--k," "s--t," "damn," etc.

Consumerism

A lot of cross-promotion happening, particularly for Favreau's movies and the Marvel Universe. The show is spun off from a movie, Chef.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Hosts and guests frequently drink alcohol with meals.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Chef Show is a cooking show featuring director/actor Jon Favreau and his mentor, Chef Roy Choi, inspired by Favreau's 2014 comedy film Chef. The hosts travel around the world, cooking regional rustic meals (Cuban sandwiches, grilled cheese, etc.) and hanging out with actors like Gwyneth Paltrow and Robert Downey Jr., directors, and other celebrity chefs. The show tries to split the difference between cooking instruction and entertainment, but it doesn't really nail either.

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What's the story?

THE CHEF SHOW brings together celebrity food truck owner Roy Choi and Jon Favreau, who met when Choi's taco truck catered for 2010's Iron Man 2, which Favreau directed. Since then, Choi has become a successful entrepreneur and chef, as well as the inspiration for Favreau's movie Chef, for which he mentored Favreau both on and off the set. The Chef Show is itself inspired by their friendship and passion for cooking, and features the two men creating recipes and eating various meals with Choi's chef friends and Favreau's celebrity pals.

Is it any good?

At one point, Favreau explains that he and Choi started filming themselves cooking in their free time, presumably when Favreau wasn't directing features and Choi wasn't running his food truck empire in Los Angeles. That's exactly what The Chef Show feels like: something that was done in the producers' spare time. Neither of the hosts are particularly charismatic, the celebrity guests are mostly an afterthought, and the show doesn't feature enough detailed instruction to really teach anyone how to make the food. It feels more like a DVD extra than a series. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about cooking. How do Favreau and Choi work together in the kitchen? How does this compare to your experiences cooking? What are some of the benefits, and challenges, of cooking alongside a partner? 

  • What meals featured on The Chef Show would you like to try? What would you like to make on your own? 

  • Favreau and Choi often talk about their teacher-student relationship. How does Choi mentor Favreau?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love cooking

Themes & Topics

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