Whether you loved him or hated him, there’s no denying that Jason made quite an impression on Hell’s Kitchen. The chef became known for his cocky attitude and sexist comments, but in the end he was sent home before many of the ladies. Gordon Ramsay eliminated Jason last night after being disappointed by the chef’s failure to master the dessert menu, as well as his lack of passion for the competition.
Today we had a chance to sit down with Jason to discuss his elimination, what happened in the hot tub, and how he really felt about the abilities of the women in the kitchen. Read on for the mp3 and complete transcript of the interview.
Hi, this is Don from BuddyTV, and today I’m talking to Jason from Hell’s Kitchen. Just to get us started here, I was wondering if you could tell us some of your experience, background, and why you tried out for the show.
Experience, I’ve been cooking in kitchens for the better part of 10 years off and on. I’ve done a few other things, but I’ve been in kitchens for at least 10 years now. Even as a little kid I was watching my mom cook and stuff, so I’ve been around the kitchen for a long time. What made me try out for the show, honestly my friends kind of talked me into it. They thought I was a good enough character that I would get on the show, so I went and tried out, one thing led to another, and I ended up there.
How did the atmosphere in Hell’s Kitchen differ from what you’re used to in the kitchen?
It’s totally different. I’m not used to getting yelled at. It’s fast paced and it’s a little intense, but not like it is on Hell’s Kitchen. That’s definitely a lot worse. It’s way more intense. The cameras add to it, the guy screaming at you constantly adds to it. It’s not like it is in a normal kitchen that I’ve worked in.
So Gordon Ramsay is as intimidating as he looks on TV?
Yeah, he’s over the top. I thought it was funny, I’ve watched it on TV and I even said, “Oh, I’ll laugh him off. He’s nothing, I’m not worried about that.” Well. that didn’t happen. That didn’t happen at all.
Did you think it was fair that you were eliminated, or do you think maybe Craig should have gone for that whole chicken thing?
For the chicken thing, Craig probably, for as much experience as he says he has, he probably should have got eliminated. But I wanted to go. I already tried to quit in the middle of the show, and they had everybody try to rally around me and keep me there. I kind of stayed that night, but I did really want to leave. I was frustrated, I had a bad day. I kind of wanted to leave, so I told them to put me up. But if I would have been put up against a guy, I don’t think I would have went home. I think I went home because I got put up against a girl.
What made you want to leave the show? Was it just the challenge of memorizing that menu?
No, it was just a culmination of a lot of things. Lack of sleep, frustration. I had a really bad day. I got put on a prep station that I’m no good at, so I wasn’t that good at it, then I got put on desserts. They just found my two weaknesses that day. Lack of sleep, and I was exhausted, I was tired, I was frustrated. Things weren’t going my way.
They showed you in the hot tub with the girls. How much did you actually say about your other teammates while you were in there?
All I did was talk about a couple guys who I might have not been getting along with that well. All I did was say that. I gave up no secrets, nothing like that. I wasn’t a rat. I didn’t rat anybody out or give up our plan or anything like that. I’m not stupid. I knew the girls were trying to milk me for information, I was trying to do the same thing to them.
Was there anything in the editing of the show that bothered you, or anything you felt should have been in there that they didn’t show?
Maybe a couple of arguments or confrontations. I feel like in the kitchen, while I was getting yelled at, I stood up for myself a few times that didn’t really get to be seen. I’m kind of upset about that. I wish that would have been shown, and maybe not so many of the sexist comments. Maybe some of the other stuff I said, you know?
I was going to ask about those.
Go for it.
They showed you saying a lot of things about how men are a little bit better than women in the kitchen.
They sure did.
Do you think that’s true? Is that type of environment just better suited for men, or did the women impress you?
The women did do some stuff to impress me, definitely. They were working better as a team than we were for the most part. I know they had a little confrontation as well, but that’s part of the game. But they were doing better than us overall, I will give them credit for that. I’ve never worked in the kitchen with a girl who did anything aside from make salads. I had a couple girls come over and try to do what we were doing, and they just couldn’t hang, so they went right back over to salads or ended up waiting tables or doing something else. So from the little bit of experience that I’ve had with that, that’s what I based most of those comments on.
What was your reaction the first day when you had to make your signature dishes for Gordon Ramsay?
I was pretty nervous. I knew that we were going to get beat up anyway. I’ve watched the show, I mean he rarely has anything good to say about anybody. I was just hoping I wasn’t the one to make him throw up.
What was the toughest challenge for you out of everything that you had to do?
The challenges weren’t that tough. I did okay on the challenges. I think, just overall, the cameras, the stress, getting yelled at by him all the time, and like I said, lack of sleep. I wasn’t sleeping well there, and I’m not used to having a pile of roommates. All the background stuff was worse than doing all the other stuff I think. I don’t know, the kitchen stuff was pretty rough though. I got my share of beatings. More than my share.
Are there any people that you worked with that you think have what it takes to make it to the very end of the show?
I don’t know. I don’t want to talk trash about people, but the guys’ team. . .I don’t know man. Everybody has such big egos, and when they got put on the spot they all looked at least as bad as I did too. For all the trash talking they said about me, I didn’t see any of them looking that good either. I don’t know, I’ve gotta go with a couple of the girls, they stand out maybe. The guys, they’re probably just gonna start dropping one by one.
Now that you’re done with the show, what’s in the future for you?
Right now just going back to work probably, and I don’t know, hopefully something good. I did go on TV for a reason. We’ll see if anything good happens from it.
– Interview conducted by Don Williams
(Image courtesy of FOX)