Fiery Scottish-born chef and Hell's Kitchen host Gordon Ramsay has established himself as a play-no-games force in the world of celebrity chef competition shows. Through his often vicious and obscenity-laced comments about up-and-coming chefs' dishes and behavior, he has become a force to be reckoned with in the industry.
However, as with most reality shows on television, viewers often wonder just how real the drama on Hell's Kitchen truly is. Here's what viewers should know.
Is 'Hell's Kitchen' scripted? Are contestants following a pre-written script?
Gordon told Emmy magazine (per Reality Blurred s) back in 2013 that "there's 50 percent cast for character, and there's 50 percent cast for talent."
As with most reality programs, it appears that Gordon and the showrunners' casting choices are meant to clearly foster some chaos, confusion, and hotheadedness among competitors, which gives the events that take place their signature crass flair.
It's clear that the events that take place in the show are not technically scripted but are definitely encouraged by the tactical choices made in who participates.
Longtime Hell's Kitchen showrunner Kenny Rosen told Reality Blurred in 2013: "This is a real cooking competition with a real, legitimate prize and real, legitimate money, and for the winner it’s truly life-changing. So we don’t want to mess with what we’ve got working."
The show is also designed to be raw and real. Kenny mentioned that the series is "partly a game show and partly skill show," and that the show had removed some of its earlier "bells and whistles" in order to feel "more like straight raw vérité. We stripped music out of a lot of scenes to try and make it feel more raw and more real...."
Ready for more drama in the kitchen? Hell's Kitchen: Battle of the Ages premieres Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, at 8 p.m. EST on Fox. You can meet the newbies in the Battle of the Ages cast here.