Top Chef Gets Fired Up!

On Top Chef, the competition got too hot to handle as the contestants dove into "The Elements" challenge! The chefs were split into four teams of three to cook starters for Chicago's Meals On Wheels, each with an element: Earth, Air, Water, and Fire - but fire pretty much took over the whole thing as the tension in the kitchen hit the boiling point.

The Fire team included Stephanie, Dale, and Lisa, who immediately didn't get along as Dale and Lisa butt heads every step of the way in their planning to the point of getting to the grocery store with no idea set for their dish.

While they continued to duke it out, the Earth team pondered to butternut squash soup, or not to butternut squash soup. Spike was adamant about doing it, and Zoi was on his side, while Antonia (who had immunity from the quick fire) put her foot down with a big "no." Well, she said she'd do it, but she was very vocal about how soup just wasn't enough to impress, so Spike gave in... big mistake!

Team Water went along pretty chummily, but unfortunately, Richard was right when he said earlier that the Richard charm was wearing off. In fact, it had gotten rather scaly! While Richard thought he was creating a monumentally delicious and genius salmon dish, he messed up the little detail of properly cleaning the fish, leaving Ming Tsai, the guest judge, with a mouthful of fish scales.

As for the Air team, they basically did just fine with their duck dish - nothing too impressive, but nothing horrific either.

After some good suspense, the win and a trip to Italy went to Lisa on the Fire team. Now, from the warm, cozy happiness of a Fire win to some firey drama!

In the elimination room, we were left with Team Water and Team Earth, with the judges narrowing it down to Earth's Spike and Zoi for elimination - but not after hearing that they'd wanted to do butternut squash soup and telling them that would have been genius. Ouch. And the loser was... Zoi.

The horror! The injustice! Well, she hasn't been doing that well so it's not unexpected for us at home, but for the chefs, this really stirred the pot!

Spike was furious and going at it with Antonia the moment Zoi left, then Dale and Lisa finally burst through with their frustration, joined by some angry chair kicking from Jen, after some not-so-subtle expression of anger about Zoi being thrown under the bus!

Ah, the maturity, the sophistication of these professional chefs! Nothing can get to them as they remain... at each other's throats. Now it looks like Jen has it out for Spike, and Dale has it out for Lisa, and Lisa has it out for Dale, and everyone has it out for everyone! Fantastic! Can't wait for the full-on brawl next week!

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Apr 10, 2008 3:18PM EDT

Kendra, your review is brimming with delicious puns today!I knew that they wouldn't kick off Richard, but honestly the scaly fish was SUCH an amateurish mistake that I almost felt like he should have been the one to go (but I guess Zoi has already skated by more than once, so this was a prime opportunity to ditch her).Also, I kept waiting for the judges to tell the Earth team that their carpaccio did taste like Earth - dirt - but alas, they did not...

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