TV chefs: The good life at the dinner table

Amid the swirl of TV cooking shows, there's one to hate ("Hell's Kitchen") and many to like (especially "MasterChef").

The chefs themselves, however, are thoroughly likable. The good times around dinner tables seems to have served them well. Here's the story I sent to papers, timed to the start of this summer's "MasterChef":


Is life one big competition show?

Maybe we're reaching the point where all of life is one big reality-competition show.

That's how it will seem Wednesday (Sept. 15). In one dizzying night, four final champions will be named; that same night, two more shows start and one cotinues. Our VCR's might implode.

TV has always been about feast-or-famine, all-or-nothing, overload-or-wasteland, but this takes it to an extreme. The finales are: