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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Top 5 Reasons Debbie is NOT the "Next Food Network Star"

I'm feeling a little torn about my introduction into "The Next Food Network Star."

On one hand, I'm happy fellow Channel Surfer Thomas Rozwadowski introduced me to the show in order to fill a TV void on my Sunday nights. On the other hand, my first experience with the show had to be with liar, liar, pants-on-fire Debbie, aka: DO YOU KNOW I’M KOREAN?

Now, clearly, I may be biased here but I can’t help but feel that Debbie Lee is giving all Asians a bad name. Or worse, solidifying a perpetual stereotype.

So before I get into the reasons why she must leave the show — for the love of all that is good and decent still in this world — allow me, Sara Boyd (and fellow Korean) to nip a few perceptions in the bud that kim-chi-Debbie has now tarnished the Asian name with.

No. 1 — We are able to and often do cook other varieties of food than Asian cuisine. And let it be known, that if faced with a lovely steak challenge, we would appreciate the American culture and not Asian-it-up.

No. 2 — No one talks about kim-chi. Ever. It’s disgusting, it smells bad and it certainly should not be the only thing other people can associate with the Korean heritage.

No. 3 — People know we’re Asian … it’s pretty blatant and obvious and even if we were to attempt to hide that fact, it would still be known. Therefore, there is NO REASON to ever remind people that you are Asian.

OK, now that that’s been said, I feel as though I can move on. So let us count the many, many reasons why Debbie should get the heave-ho next week.

1. Debbie is a liar. I wish she weren’t a liar, but she is. A big fat one. (No pun intended … or was it?) Not only has Debbie lied, but she’s lied many, many times. Let’s see … there was the time she said they came in just under budget during the first challenge and turns out she had to cut things out — things people needed — in order to make it within the budget. Then there was the time she said she was being completely and utterly “selfless” during the party challenge when she literally only worked on her own dishes … Oh yeah, and then there was the time this last week when she flat out lied to Bobby Flay’s face when he asked her where her mandatory capers were in her dish. "Oh, I didn't have capers. I mean, I forgot them." Ah, yes. Hey Debbie, say it with me now … “The color of the pen that I hold in my hand is re-re-ROYAL BLUE.”

2. Debbie is not capable of making food that isn’t Asian. I know the judges accused Jeffrey of the same weakness, but I don’t think it’s nearly as apparent as the amount of “Asian-inspired” dishes that Debbie has made. Perhaps it’s her “We’re going to add a little ginger, because you know, I’m Korean” that accompanies every explanation of an Asian dish that further pisses me off but really, I think that the woman is incapable. Take this last challenge — the judges took away all of Jeffrey’s spices and all of Debbie’s Asian sauces and guess what? Jeffrey won with an Asian-inspired dish and Debbie was nearly sent home for lying and neglecting her Mediterranean capers.

3. I don’t understand what the judges are thinking. One of the main reasons they give over and over for keeping Miss Lee is that Debbie has this great personality and a perfect persona for the camera. I don’t know what kind of show they’re thinking she could do (perhaps, “How to Transform Everything into An Asian Dish?”) but I can’t think of one thing she could do that would be worthy of an entire show. Not to mention, there’s no way I could stomach watching her talk about being Asian for a full hour, every week.

4. Jeffrey clearly has to win this competition. Sure, he’s had his bad days but the man has been one of the most consistent contestants without making me want to gouge my eyes out or stab mommy Melissa with a rusty spoon. He’s got the on-camera presence that is needed plus he has a soothing way of talking that doesn’t annoy the crap out of me — which on this show, is saying something. Between Jeffrey and Debbie, there’s a clear difference: Jeffrey isn’t a liar and has proven he can cook … anything.

5. Debbie needs to stop inviting people to her pity party. No one wants to come and no one is buying it anymore. Whatever the scenario, Debbie has tried to use the judges’ pity on her as a way to stay alive for another week. Prime example? She gets hit in the face with a scalding hot pan (which, btw, was the best moment ever on this show) and tells the judges all about how she had to fight and struggle to keep going after being in the most extreme pain of her life. Or pick your favorite moment where Debbie brings out the tears for some sympathy votes and gives her sobbing speech about being hurt or feeling overly criticized. Wah, wah, wah.

Let’s hope for the sake of this show and any chance of me returning to watch for a second season, the judges will realize what a grave mistake it would be to give a show to Korean-Debbie-Korean-Lee-Korean. Hopefully Jeffrey will pull out all the stops and narrow the scope of this competition next week. Because let’s be honest, if either Debbie or Melissa — who’s a mom — wins this thing, it’ll be a sad, sad day for television.

-- Sara Boyd,



Sara, I totally get your hatred for Debbie "if it's got ginger on it, it's Asian," but my own personal hatred for Melissa far outweighs my dislike for kimchi-totin' Debbie. Melissa, who can't stop reminding people that she's a STAY-AT-HOME mom, is irritating, amateur and sucks. Her food isn't that great and her shtick of "homey, easy food" gets old after a while. As a kid of a stay-at-home mom, I think Melissa gives them all a bad name. If she or Debbie wins, it will be, as you said, a sad day.

Go Team Jeff!


By Blogger Press-Gazette blogger, At July 23, 2009 at 10:04 AM  

First of all hating Kimchi is a matter of opinion. You are rightly entitled to your own opinion but using that as a point to hate her is far less of a problem. This is especially from the fact that she can't cook Korean food believe it or not (SHOCK! she lied!) But having said that I can assure you without thinking twice that Debbie's Kimchi would certainly be nasty even to Kimchi-lovers' standards. It takes time to ferment and it is not something that is just whipped up in minutes. Oh and half of her "asian-inspired" dishes aren't even Korean...another shocker here people.

Let’s face the fact that Debbie Lee has a serious character flaw despite what how tearfully she’d disagree. Instead of admitting faults she finds excuses for her mistakes. She can’t cook Korean food worth crap, her Korean is terrible (mind you it’s simple words not even sentences), and she plays the race card for being Korean. I am Korean and I was completely pissed off. I am so glad Bobby Flay saw right through her BS. From her not owning up to the Miami party as kitchen manager, saying she actually used the capers, and then saying that Koreans like to eat their meat “tough”. GALBI-JJIM IS NOT TOUGH DEBBIE LEE. It is slow cooked Galbi that literally falls off the bones. I have an American friend who I introduced Korean BBQ to and he couldn’t even eat it because he considered it too “fatty” and “tender”. Debbie’s justification for that horrifying excuse for her Galbi-jjim made it seem like Koreans were like cavemen “Gnawing” rubber-meat.

Debbie Lee you were the WORST representation for a Korean-American on National TV. Please gain some morals in your life and realize that usually those who admit their faults and weaknesses are more respected than those who try to create a lame excuse for everything. But then along with your “I’m Korean” rant you frequently stated that you wouldn’t feel bad about your mistakes. Yea but neither should you lie and pretend it never happened.

As stated earlier, she lied about her Galbi-Jjim. That or my family cookin, Korean restaurant experience in Korea, LA, anywhere I live of my favorite Korean dish are all wrong. The fact is that you can’t make 갈비찜 in an hour. It is like Korean pot-roast. To this statement I can say I may be incorrect, but I’m not a cook; neither is Debbie. Americans are much more likely to eat “tougher” meat than Koreans. It only adds to the fact that she is a complete liar and will do anything to get out of the negative spotlight. The irony, of course, being that she has permanently placed herself in one through her mendacious personality.

As many have stated, the only reason you repeatedly attest to the fact that you are Korean is purely because you can’t cook Korean. Let me give you a hint Debbie, most people find race-card playing extremely annoying. Use your talent as your credibility, not your race. If you have a special cultural background that makes your food unique, show it on the plate, not through your trash verbiage.

By Anonymous Anonymous, At August 1, 2009 at 11:52 PM  

Debbie is Fat, that is obvious. How she got fat? Overeating

Her Galbi-jjim is bullshit. Koreans like to eat their meat tough...bull shit! No civilized culture enjoys that sort of preparation of meat. All her Korean is terrible. "eat well" lol

Hot damn!

By Anonymous Anonymous, At August 10, 2009 at 11:30 AM  

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