Top Chef Power Rankings
By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower
January 2, 2013

Brooke is laughing at how much the rest of the players suck.

Since Bart fell on the sword for Josie last week, the major change in the power rankings is his removal. Josie remains the worst competitor on Top Chef this season. The producers of the show do a wonderful job for the most part, yet her inclusion for the Seattle season is a total head scratcher. She isn’t very good, which is annoying. She is disruptive to others, which is unforgivable. Bart was not going to win Top Chef because he does not have the same taste with regards to seasoning as the judges. He was still undone by his teammate, an issue that always frustrates us in an allegedly individual competition. There is also a new number one.

1) Brooke - I maintain that proper power rankings have to focus on results, at least somewhat. There are two competitions each week and if a person is excelling or struggling in them, their status in the game is impacted. Judging perception already eliminated Danyele from Top Chef. It’s important that a player stand out via wins if they want to be seriously considered worthy of the title of Top Chef. Brooke has won three out of the last six challenges, a mathematically impressive feat with 10+ players still alive during the streak.

2) Kristen - Her middling performance last week is the result of being paired with Stefan. Their awkward flirtation forcibly reminded us of eventual champion Hosea’s ill-conceived interest in Leah during season 5. Hosea was a much bigger threat the moment Leah was eliminated. Since Stefan participated that year, you would think he would know better. Kristen is just young and hard-wired to flirt with successful older men.

3) Lizzie - In elimination challenges, Lizzie has finished in the top group or the middle. More often than not (by a 4 to 3 vote), she has been at the top. Her resourcefulness as well as her ability to cook well in team atmospheres has separated her from most of the other performers. Lizzie has all the characteristics of a Top Chef champion.

4) Sheldon - Grading Sheldon was difficult this week in that the tempura dish was his idea. It almost led to the elimination of either Joshua or himself. Still, he has demonstrated a lot of skill in his craft throughout the season. We are choosing not to punish him a great deal for a single misadventure. With another poor performance, his stock would drop dramatically, though.

5) John - The chefs in this spot and the next one are the best credentialed and well recognized of the cast. Fairly or not, we have had them jockeying for position throughout the season. John’s team victory last week temporarily elevates him above his bald companion. We also enjoyed John’s brief moment of humanity, even if it was quickly undone by his later words.

6) Stefan - The Thumb likes Kristen. It’s subtle but if you watch carefully, you can pick up on it. He also managed to be creepy with a few roller girls and Brooke as well. We are guessing that Stefan spends a lot of money paying women to like him at strip clubs. This is neither here nor there with regards to his placement in the power rankings. We simply wanted to state our belief on the topic.

7) Micah - Come out of the closet, Micah! Josie knows all! We probably should move Micah even higher on the list than this after his winning the Quickfire and finishing in the top group during the Elimination challenge. If this proves to be a surge, he gets a solid bump next week. Until then, our suspicion is that he had a good day rather than that he is becoming a serious threat to win.

8) Joshua - The way this season is going, Joshua probably gets eliminated this week so that Josie can survive for yet another episode. Still, the difference between Joshua and Josie is much, much, much larger than the difference between Joshua and Micah. Unless Joshua is cooking pork.

9) Josie - How can we miss you if you won’t go away? Also, there are like 300 procedural shows on television. Can’t we get one of them to investigate how Josie managed to “settle” Bart in front of dozens of witnesses?