Reality competition shows can be inherently frustrating to watch. As much as you’d like to hope the process for choosing who moves on and who goes home is fair, you sometimes have to wonder if producers are pulling the strings and keeping contestants around who will help improve ratings. Past seasons of MasterChef have made me question this process from time to time, but its sixth season (which just drew to a close) gave me no such worry.
This season of MasterChef may be one of its best yet, in terms of entertainment factor, contestant skill, and more. For its first five seasons, the show featured Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot, and Joe Bastianich as its judges. Bastianich left the show before this season, though, and was replaced by Christina Tosi. I love and miss Joe, but Christina is a more-than-adequate substitution. She’s fierce and funny and sassy, which means she fits in perfectly with the flow of this show.
MasterChef follows a formula, but deviates from it enough to keep things fresh. You’ll have your mystery box challenges, you’ll have your team challenges, and you’ll have your pressure tests. But within each of these tasks, the show mixes things up in a few ways that we haven’t seen in its first five years.
I love Gordon Ramsay, but I’m no disciple; I won’t continue to watch anything he’s put out. In fact, MasterChef is the only show of his that I currently watch. But it’s so good, and I love it so much, that I’ll watch it for as long as he wants to make it. (Also, let’s hurry up and get here, November 6, so we can get some of that wonderful MasterChef Junior action.) Whether you love cooking, conflict, or reality shows, MasterChef’s sixth season is well worth your time.