Just like the amateur chefs ejected on the TV cooking competitions he oversees, Gordon Ramsay is hanging up his apron on Kitchen Nightmares.
After 12 memorable seasons, the mad Scottish chef has pulled the plug on Nightmares, the highly rated Fox reality series in which he single-handedly attempts to rescue struggling restaurants by overhauling the menus and decor.
As per the original British series Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares, each episode in the Fox version invariably features the bombastic chef chewing out the witless proprietor who let his or her eatery fall on hard times in the first place.
But no doubt some people are surprised Ramsay would voluntarily walk away from a TV franchise that appeared to be at the top of its game. The 47-year-old chef went onto his personal website on Monday to abruptly announce the show's shutdown.
"As filming comes to a close on the latest series of Kitchen Nightmares, I've decided to stop making the show," said Ramsay. "I've had a phenomenal 10 years making 123 episodes, 12 seasons shot across 2 continents, watched by tens of millions of people and sold to over 150 countries. It's been a blast but it's time to call it a day."
Ramsay provided no specific reason for his decision in the statement.
Whatever the provocation, Kitchen Nightmares has certainly enjoyed prosperous runs on both British and American television.
The British series routinely pulled a viewing audience in the six-million-viewer range during its five-season run between 2004 and 2009.
On American television, last month's seventh-season finale of Kitchen Nightmares garnered a respectable 2.5-million viewers for the Fox Network.
But restaurant owners will have to look elsewhere for salvation in the future: Ramsay makes it clear in his note that Kitchen Nightmares has wrapped at the same time he credits the show for making him a household name with North American viewers.
"This was the show that really propelled my TV career," he writes. "I'm very grateful for the amazing team behind the series and for the support from the viewers for almost a decade!"
Of course it's germane to the discussion to point out that Ramsay still has four other hourlong series on the Fox schedule.
Currently, the Ramsay-helmed shows Hell's Kitchen and MasterChef hold down plum positions on Fox's summer primetime lineup. Slated to return later this year are the Ramsay properties MasterChef Junior and Hotel Hell (which is virtually identical in format to Kitchen Nightmares, except that Ramsay rescues foundering hotels).
In other words, there's only so much Gordon Ramsay to go around.
Gary Oldman has come out swinging in defence of Mel Gibson and Alec Baldwin. The English star of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes lashes out against the current politically correct state of Hollywood in an upcoming interview in Playboy magazine. "I just think political correctness is crap," said Oldman in the interview. "I think it's like, take a f-ng joke. Get over it." In the same interview, Oldman expounds on the infamous 2006 anti-Semitic rant by fellow actor Mel Gibson ("I don't know about Mel. He got drunk and said a few things, but we've all said those things") and Alec Baldwin's repeated use of homophobic slurs as insults ("I don't blame him").
Taylor Schilling's favourite part of playing a convicted felon on Orange is the New Black: All her fashion decisions are solved with an orange jumpsuit. In the current issue of Allure magazine, the 29-year-old actress talks about her non-preparation to assume the pivotal role of Piper, a bisexual woman doing hard time in a women's correctional facility. "It's totally liberating," says Schilling. "There's freedom in not having to make it about how my jeans fit or what my boobs look like in a top. All I have to do now is play."
Lana Del Rey has learned a valuable lesson about speaking freely to the press. During a recent interview with The Guardian, the singer-songwriter made the comment, "I wish I was dead already," in reference to joining the gone-too-soon ranks of Amy Winehouse and Kurt Cobain. Two days later, Cobain's only daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, went onto Twitter to admonish her with the tweet, "The death of young musicians isn't something to romanticize." Cobain followed up with the tweet: "I'll never know my father because he died young & it becomes a desirable feat because ppl like u think it's 'cool,' " On Tuesday, she responded to Cobain with her own tweet: "The interviewer was asking me a lot about your dad. I said I liked him because he was talented, not because he died young. … I don't find that part of music glam either."
What's the deal with TBS marking the 25th anniversary of Seinfeld with a viewing marathon? The Atlanta-based station has announced a week-long celebration of the sitcom that began as The Seinfeld Chronicles in 1989 and ran nine highly rated seasons until 1998. The marathon, which runs from June 30 to July 5, will include the classic episodes The Puffy Shirt, The Chinese Restaurant and, of course, The Contest in its lineup.
Bindi Irwin wants teenaged girls to stop showing so much skin. The 15-year-old daughter of late Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin recently surprised News Corp Australia with her comments proposing a return to modesty. "I'm a big advocate for young girls dressing their age," said Irwin. "I mean, for me, I look around at a lot of young girls that are my age and they're always trying to dress older. Whether it's revealing clothes or hardly wearing any clothes at all." In the same chat, Irwin suggested she was actually an old soul trapped in a teen's body. "I'd be 86," she said. "I love a cup of tea and a good book and none of that other stuff really interests me."