Aarti’s After Party: Star As Therapy

by in Food Network Star, June 24, 2012

Emily Ellyn

Aarti Sequeira won Food Network Star season 6 and expanded her popular blog into a cooking show, Aarti Party (catch it on Food Network, Sundays at 7:30am/6:30c). As a Star veteran watching from her couch at home, Aarti shares her insider’s take on what went down each week.

Someone give me my clairvoyance badge! (Isn’t that something you earn in the Girl Scouts?) Last week I asked why Emily was so fascinated by the '50s, and why Justin felt the need to pursue this "rebel without a culinary cause" POV because, in my estimation, what you cook isn’t the whole story — it’s why you cook that turns an everyday burger into something special.

And guess what? That was exactly what this week was about.

I’ll be honest. I’m still a bit surprised that Emily was sent home. She was an early favorite of mine, although always with a bit of reservation. I wanted to see beyond the awesome wardrobe and masterful cooking technique to the beating heart beneath the halter-neck apron. I had really hoped we’d get there this week.

During my season of Star, we often likened this competition to therapy. The last thing you’d expect in a TV competition about cooking is to have to deal with your demons. But you do, because being under this kind of scrutiny, under this kind of pressure, draws all of those suckers to the surface. And, rather than enduring hours of self-analysis on a couch in a therapist’s office, you’re doing it in your heels, under interrogator’s lights and before a national TV audience. It’s scary, no doubt. But one of the things I learned through Star is that if something scares you, you can’t back off — you’ve got to run full-speed at it, roaring with all your might.

Yvan Lemoine

I have to give it up to Yvan this week. Until now, I honestly haven’t walked away with much of an impression about him. But when Bob asked, “Why is food important to you?” I thought, oy. That is the kind of massive, $64,000 question that can sink you under its weight. But, depending on how you look at it, it can also be a gift. Rather than shy away from it, Yvan barreled straight into it, revealing a chapter in his life of such heart-wrenching depth that I don’t think I’ll ever forget him. It takes a lot of courage to stand so vulnerably and nakedly before the country, but when you’re that honest, how can anyone not love you?

I loved Martie’s story for the same reason. Sure, I have to have a defibrillator handy every time she cooks because I’m never certain she’ll make it in time (now I know how Bobby felt when he watched me cook!), but, boy, did she bowl me over when she told that story about learning to throw her own parties so that she’d never be stood up or uninvited to one again. Again, she revealed a deep wound, one I totally relate to (being the victim of cruel children’s pranks). But rather than indulge in any “woe is me,” she turned it into a trademark Martie moment: a little spunk, a little pull-your-socks-up vitality and a hefty dose of warm humor. I don’t know how she manages it every week, but I have a feeling Martie could stick around a lot longer.

Emily Ellyn and Alton Brown

But, oh, my sweet Emily. All she needed was one good story, one good moment from her past, perhaps the moment that started it all for her. I know that it’s hard to pull down the walls you may have built up, walls that in Emily’s case may resemble an awesome ‘50s wardrobe and a knowledge of retro fare that is likely rivaled by none. But like it or not, this show calls for not only the slick coat of paint, but a look at the bones of the house, too.

I long to know what it was that made Emily choose this particular era as the one that she clings to, why she longs for the “simplicity” of the Leave It To Beaver days. By her tears, I sense that there’s some deep sadness behind it. Sadly, I’ll never know. I’m starting to get attached, people! I’m disappointed that she’s gone, especially because I think that, had she taken the plunge and given us a glimpse of her story, she would have stayed this week; neither Nikki nor Martita told deep-enough stories for my liking, but at least they told us something. Emily was one of the top people whom I looked forward to watching each week, and with her gone, a bright cat-eyed light has disappeared from the competition.

What did everyone else think?


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Comments (1,119)

  1. Adam says:

    Emily is just too unbelievable, almost phony. I think the judges would not admit it, but they question her genuiness. She is trying to create some kind of branding from the ghetcko, and the judges were not fooled.

    • Guest says:

      I agree Adam, Emily sounded very phony, and I don't regret the judges' decision to send her home.

    • Frank Demeo says:


    • FanFare57 says:

      Hmmm. She did sound strained. But, I think she was trying to skirt the storytelling aspect too much. That forced her into a corner to protect her privacy (or whatever she was hiding). I feel that was less of a problem than Martita's 30 seconds of dead air and lack luster verbal performance.

      • Wayne says:

        You're so right FanFare57. Ditto all you said. Martita's presentation was flat. Clearly even she didn't want to share her personal biz either. She claimed it was becuz missing them all so much but I don't blame any of them for not wanting to share their private biz.. Neither do we want to know it as it has been expressed here over and over.

      • Violet says:

        I agree FanFare57. Also, why just because of one story about her college days does Martie beat out Emily? Martie's been hanging on by a thread and could/should have been sent home long ago. Who does this leave us? Justin who is "way out there" who should be on a different type of "foodie" show - sorry don't feel tempted to stuff my dates w/pb, etc. Nikki with deep anger issues plus she's just not interesting. Martita besides the unthinkable abandoning dead air space, c'mon how many Mexican cuisine shows do we need (plus the FN American chefs/cooks also incorporate Mexican recipes into their shows too)? Ivan I find myself not even listening to him - waa waa waa. He just doesn't capture my attention at all, sorry! And Michele - yup FB needs another bleached, tatted and pierced cook. These distractions make me lose my appetite besides I think her mother Phyllis whose the real talent should be hired for a FN show instead.
        Well I feel like gettin' off this train to nowhere!

        • Violet says:

          Did ya notice I left out Ippy (who truly is adorable) and Malcom? Geez guess I find them forgetable, sorry guys.

          • beachinfrizzy says:

            Not surprising...they get next to zero airtime unless it's one of the judges on them about personality or POV, which they both shrug off; yet they're still here. Their food gets consistently good reviews...maybe once all the drama queens are out of the way there will be more time for them.

          • LLM says:

            I know who Ippy is--but who's Malcolm? LOL.

        • Marsha says:

          Deep anger issues? Where is that coming from?

          • guest says:

            I don't get anger issues from Nikki. I think she is a serious perfectionist who was probably not the favorite daughter in her family (often overshadowed by another sibling) and she tried her best at everything and refused to let emotions get in the way - JUST TO PROVE SHE WAS BETTER. I SERIOUSLY think that is why she struggles with the likeable thing. She probably struggled with self esteem a bit, parents weren't paying enough attention to her (whether they were or not, she had to share it with someone else, when she wanted all the attention herself) and I think she probably can be likeable and a good person, but it's very hard for her to open up to even one person...Just an opinion. . let alone an entire viewing audience! She's a competitor from a competitive family life and she's "perfected" herself into what she thinks everyone wants her to be, but the emotion is lacking because she is completely fake.

          • guest says:

            I just say that because she acts just like someone I know. It's completely normal and I feel bad for her. She needs to get over trying to be as hard as stone and just have fun. I think its hard for her to let go and enjoy herself. She is hell bent on doing everything exactly right.

          • LISN says:

            I just laughed out loud when you psycho analysed Nikki that way. Now, the judges have all of us trying to delve deeper into these cooks' heads. It's ridiculous, to say the least. We should be discussing their food offerings not whether they offered up their biggest social problems

          • MCC says:

            Three times in the pitch room for Nikki, there's got to be a message there. She seems to be the main reason Malcolm has never ended up in the pitch room - even Bobby is surprised he's still in the competition.

            Emily should have shared something, and that she didn't sent up a red flag that got her eliminated. But I know as a viewer that even if she couldn't be ready in 4 weeks, I'd rather watch her for the next few episodes than Nikki or Malcolm or Ippy.

          • JLF says:

            Why should keeping your prrivacy protected be a red flag?

      • kay says:

        Yes FanFare57! Martita's 30 sec blunder and Nikki's "sour" scallop and phony girly performance were worse than Emily's not wanting to share personal stories. Frankly I'm not interested in personal stories! I watch FN to learn to cook!

    • coldriver says:

      Just sent this to the network====WOW!!!! REALLY!!!! You kickoff Emily??? what happened to the individual effort?? It should have been the other two in the bottom two,30 SECONDS OF DEAD AIR !!!!! WOW!!!! This was Emily's first time in the bottom.How many times were the other ones inthe bottom?I think that Emily's concept could have worked on your network,something different,and her food was really good consistantly.Your opening statement was it is an individual effort from here on out,then you have to pick someone from every team????This smells a little fishy,nobody from Alton's team should have been in any bottom this week. The other two should have been in the bottom,based on individual effort,It's almost like, well,fishy,very fishy.Hope you can do better from here on out,and,in my opinion,you owe Alton one.

    • Guest says:

      I don't think her or her concept are phony at all. I think the problem is that she has a passion for the 50's and that even she knows that it is not something that she can pull off all the time. I'm sure she doesn't always look like June Cleaver and she may feel guilty about that.... But I don't think she is portraying a character either, I think it is a huge part of her. And as far as opening up, maybe she doesn't have some bleeding heart story about her past and she was nervous because of that... or maybe she did and she just didn't want to share that and she didn't want to lie. Either way, she didn't leave 30 seconds of dead air with a smile on her face and she actually made food that the judges enjoyed....

    • MaryJoan says:

      Adam, if Emily is unbelievable, you just don't actually know her! She is the real deal and you are way too quick to judge her. The show put a lot of internal pressure on all the contestants this week and that is quite evident. She is way above talented and highly intelligent to boot...wishing her much success.

      • Adam says:

        let me just say this to everyone, I also do agree that martita with her 30 seconds of dead air should have been considered to be kicked off, and she WAS considered. im not saying I would not be apposed to kick her off, but I think the judges simply did not think they understood or knew what emily was all about, I think they were still trying to figure her out and since it was week 7, they decided to let her go.

        • Jerilee says:

          To me, Emily was very plain in what she was. Alton saw it too, or he wouldn't have picked her.

  2. Athena says:

    I am heartbroken. I was really pulling for Emily to win this thing and I can't believe that the judges are so hell-bent on these "stories" that they can't let food speak for itself! I'm done. See everybody next season. Maybe.

    • Adam says:

      emily' food was not remarkable or unique. i dont think she was true to herself and to the judges.

      • Athena says:

        Emily is pure gold and she deserves much better than what she got!

        • Guest says:

          I'm sorry, but I agree with Adam.

        • Guest says:

          I agree with Adam.

          • Ohio says:

            im sorry but that is insaine how can you? tell me the last time where you saw a retro rad theme like hers on the show? a personality like hers? im sorry she cant tell the whole world about her life

          • Guest says:

            I've seen much better personalities than Emily's. Personalities that don't sound phony.

        • Guest says:

          I disagree with you. Emily deserved what she got. She sounded extremely phony.

          • Ohio says:

            who gives a flying woot...she messed up once....nikki and martitia have messed up muptile times. its almost unfair emily only gets one chance and everyone else get more

          • FanFare57 says:

            I agree with you. But, Emily has been on the hot seat once before. It was Martita's first time at this rodeo. Personally, I don't need or want the "personal" back stories. It's too emotionally draining from a cooking show.

          • Guest says:

            This is the first time that we saw Martita in the pitch room. I agree with the judges on sending Emily home.

          • Ohio says:

            martita left 30 seconds on air and hasnt shown up for 7 straight weeks? emily was forced to go in the pitch room before because of her whole team and i assure you emily has done a hell of a better job than martita

          • Sharonbru says:

            I agree with you ohio, Emily has been great all along. Marttita has messed up several times and she gets to stay. I think the judges like the way she sounds so authentic in her pronunciation of Mexican dishes. Emily desrerved another chance. She had a unique POV, and I was looking forward to watching her present some old fashioned recipes with a modern twist.

      • JLF says:

        B.S. Whatever was said about her retro persona, Emily's food was consistenly praised by the judges, including tonite.

        • Guest says:

          Big deal. I get attracted to a potential star by both the personality and the food. Emily needs to gain confidence in herself

          • JLF says:

            Then you are welcome to enjoy the confidently prepared sour tasting scallop prepared by 3-time loser Nikki garnished by her sweet grill next door rose petal.

          • Guest says:

            Actually Martita is my favorite. I'm hoping Martita wins

          • guest2 says:


          • klea says:

            with :30 second left all she do just stand there nothing to say

          • FanFare57 says:

            Guest, I agree with your idea of qualifications. However, Emily WAS confident up until this one time. She had an "off" night. Her food was always well received. Bob always applauded her "smarts". Based on her previous performances, Bob & Suse could have granted Emily a Mulligan too.

      • Non says:

        You can get Emily's "perfect bite" at any WaWa around Thanksgiving.

    • Jewel says:

      I agree! Think they are harping on that a little too much. I think Emily and Justin are the only ones with an original POV. I don't even know if I want to watch anymore, because the way the judges do their judging...Justin will be outta there!

      • guest says:

        LOVE JUSTIN and EMILY and IPPY...the rest I would NOT watch...they are the only ones with an original POV and I think Emily got the raw deal...I thought she was endearing...she was just keeping something from her childhood private in my opinion...

        I don't watch the cooking shows on the food network because they bore me...I would have watched Emily and Justin...

        Good Luck to you Emily YOU are LOVED ♥ (and I hope the cooking channel picks you up, I would watch you show)

        • iris45 says:

          I would watch her as well so hope the cooking channel gives her a chance!

        • Violet says:

          I wonder if this is FN's plan for Emily. Just like the fabulous Kelsey Nixon. Hope to see you there (CCTV) Emily! Stay true to yourself.

        • Jewels says:

          I have to comment on the judges pushing people to talk about their past. Not everyone was raised with rainbows and unicorns. If someone's past is too hard to confront, do they think bringing it up on national television is going to make it better? I doubt that.

          Yvan, while I appreciate that he was able to open up, it was really twitchy to have to listen to. TMI. But that is what the judges wanted. That is what the nation got. Very sad that FN is falling into the "drama" of reality TV lately. I don't come to the Food Network for drama. Competition?? sure...drama, no!!

          Emily should not have been sent home. Nikki should have. I want to know what Nikki is doing there with three trips to the hot seat. Who can explain that?

          Good luck Emily. I hope we see you on the Cooking Channel. Along with Jeff Saad and Kelsey.

    • Andee Bryan says:

      I'm so sad that Emily is gone ... cute as a button, smart as a tack, food from my rust belt roots. Homesick already. Something wrong with the game rules/judging that Ippy, Malcolm, and Martita remain in her stead.

    • coldriver says:

      This is what Ijust sent to the network------WOW!!!! REALLY!!!! You kickoff Emily??? what happened to the individual effort?? It should have been the other two in the bottom two,30 SECONDS OF DEAD AIR !!!!! WOW!!!! This was Emily's first time in the bottom.How many times were the other ones inthe bottom?I think that Emily's concept could have worked on your network,something different,and her food was really good consistantly.Your opening statement was it is an individual effort from here on out,then you have to pick someone from every team????This smells a little fishy,nobody from Alton's team should have been in any bottom this week. The other two should have been in the bottom,based on individual effort,It's almost like, well,fishy,very fishy.Hope you can do better from here on out,and,in my opinion,you owe Alton one.

      • Wayne says:

        Good you got that off your chest but I doubt they really care.

        • Richard says:

          They actually do....

          e.g. Kelsey, Adam Gertler, Tom Pizzica, Jeffrey Raad.... they all have shows scattered either on the Food Network or Cooking Channel...

    • Food Fan says:

      I'll have more later, but for now I'll say this:
      If they can forgive Martie for how she was earlier-on, they should certainly forgive Emily for one poor night. I admit I was surprised at her nervousness tonight, but she had done so well other times. And her food was liked. Martita had a poor presentation last time and 30 seconds of dead air this time. Nikki has been in the pitch room before and its difficult to see her winning this with all the people not liking her.
      I really getting sick of all this relentless emphasis on back-stories. I could care less!
      Its the FOOD. and the personality of the Cook. And I can like personality just fine without all the drama!

      • Bloom says:

        I know! The woman had ONE bad night (two if you count getting horribly car-sick, which I don't, because that's not her fault) and they sent her home?!? The other two screwed up worse than she did, but she was sent home because she wouldn't bare her soul? That was so unfair.

    • Sharon says:

      This has turned into The Therapy Hour. I don't need to know the kind of things that people might tell their shrinks (I had a stinky upbringing, but I wouldn't tell the audience to bring them down). I don't know a single thing about Tyler Florence, but I love his recipes and enjoy watching him.

      I thought Marti's story was so so sad--it did not belong on a cooking show told as it was! I look at her now as sort of an outcast, where I did not before this. And I put that with her rambling and it says "low self-esteem" or "self doubt" to me.

      Judges: I find the level of your intrusiveness out of line. I like the idea of having a POV or theme, but these people can wait until they write their books to unearth the nitty gritty details of their lives. And you put them on national TV to do the tell-alls. Shame on you.

    • khoglen says:

      Emily was a great chef, and I loved her "retro" personality. She was definitely someone that I would want to watch every week. Martita and Nikki are both very forgettable - would not waste my time to tune in to either one of them if they were to get their own show. In fact, Martie Duncan is probably the only contestant left that I would take time to watch. Very bad call Bob and Susie!!

  3. Heck says:

    Still can't stand Marti. There is no way she can be given a spot on the food network with a POV and show that seems to be copied straight from Aarti Party (the champion from two seasons ago). No other contestant seems to have as many technical blunders week after week that almost cause her dish to be disastrous.

    • Wayne says:

      All due respect to Aarti, I don't think she was the first person to come up with liking to cook because she wants to have a party. Names rhyme so ...she shouldn't have to change her true position if thats who she is...My opinion, just as you are sharing yours.

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        I agree with ya, Wayne, I don't think Aarti was making rice pilaf tacos when Martie was 13 years old.

      • Friend of Martie D says:

        Well said, Wayne! As a friend of Martie, I can attest to the fact that she's been "Martie with the Party" for years. Her business and website had that moniker way before Aarti's show came about.

        • Jerilee says:

          But she didn't say that. Correct me if I'm wrong,I often am, but I heard Marti's Party, which is different from Aarti Party, but not by much.

    • FanFare57 says:

      I completely agree with you. Watching Marti work in the kitchen is exasperating. She's flustered, disorganized and insecure. Her story weaving drives my batty. I don't find her food appealing either.

      • Jerilee says:

        She would be great if you gave her an hour show and told her she had 30 mun. Although she diddo better tonight.

      • Just my perspective says:

        Well, as we all have our opinions, I completely disagree with YOU FanFare! Martie has stated she doesn't have the culinary experience that some of the others have, but shoot, you can learn that. As one of the judges said about Martie, she's one in 10,000 ..... THAT you CAN'T learn. She's engaging, and that's what counts.

        What drives us to watch certain food shows? The personality of the person on the show! I don't want to listen to someone just talk about technique, or the science of food, or cuts of meat. Obstacles happen every day in the kitchen, we love to see how to overcome those obstacles!

    • Juli says:

      It seems like every single week Martie gets flustered over something and somehow gets incredibly lucky and ends up pulling it off.

      • FanFare57 says:

        You're right. She's more lucky than smart. A big part of being a FN Star is to be able to demonstrate what you're doing in a calm, confident manner. Martie hasn't done that yet. I suggest Bobby-Sue take a look at the prep work tapes to get the full picture of what they think is so home spun, cutesie before the next elimination.

        • Sharon says:

          I will second that. They must have something good to say about the contestants left over, but they are living on another planet with their judging criteria. All I really want to know about the hosts is that they are expert at their POVs or themes. All I need to stay tuned in is a pleasing and interesting personality.

      • Just my perspective says:

        Luck??? Or could it actually be skill? I actually think it could be the latter!

    • Sharon says:

      That Marti's Party sure struck a raw nerve with me. Aarti can be magnanimous about it, which she will be--she was the real star of her competition and my husband could not wait for an Indian food show!

      As for Marti, I am surprised that they kept her after that dead 30 seconds.... What's up with that?

      • MRH says:

        That was Martita, not Marti

      • Friend of Martie D says:

        Martie's business and website has been "Martie Knows Parties" for years. Actually, we've been calling her "Martie with the Party" since high school. She has never pretended to be a culinary expert and has been quite clear she's a party planner.

    • kathy says:

      Ohio, I thought emily had something to really share with us . But we will never know. She was not my favorite but I think deep down she would have been better than false Martita. She has to go .

    • Vicki says:

      I can't stand her either, but they overlook egregious errors from her day after day. I think she is already the winner and I, for one, will never watch her show. She talks constantly with that southern pseudo 'charm'. In fact she is incapable of shutting up. The others do have problems in front of the camera. I think the network thinks they can control her flaws better than the others. Plus she is Paula Deen redux and they probably think she can step right into her shoes. They probably already have the Paula and Martie shows planned. Yuck. I have seen three shows and she has made horrible errors on all of them. I don't bake and I could make a better jelly roll than the mess she made, but she skates again. Alton practically gave her recipe in the State food challenge and then let her rehearse umpteen times. grossly grossly unfair. I think this is mostly for show and they have already crowned Martie in their minds.

  4. La Nita T says:

    I love Emily so sad to see her go. It seems that she lost a little bit of her self confidence when the judges asked her is this who you really are or are you acting? I think that is who she is, but of course that's not ALL she is. She needs to be proud of who she is and not afraid that people won't like her once they get to know more about the person behind the 50's outfits. I would love to see more of Emily and hope she gets her own show someday.

    • Roxanne says:

      Agreed La Nita! I hope that she gets her own show some day. Week after week she showed up and put her best foot forward, like in the Halloween challenge. Tonight was the first "mess up" that she had and she goes home! Unbelievable.

    • JML says:

      I think Emily likes the past because as she stated, it was not complicated. Perhaps her life has been very complicated, and not in a good way. And she is afraid to share that with everyone. That was my impression and I was really hoping she would go for it. But honestly, if we were in her shoes, would we want to share the less attractive part of our lives?

      • Guest says:

        Maybe she just has a passion of the time when things were new, fresh, and enjoyable. I mean, I love the 50's. The diners, the drive in's, the cars, the music, the skirts, the shoes!! I mean, I am in my thirties and I've always LOVED the 50's. My grandmother had to make me a poodle skirt in the 3rd grade. No real story behind it... I just had wanted to live in that time. Just liked it. Maybe she has no idea why she likes it either. It was fun, the women had to spend all day in the kitchen making dinner from scratch while listening to the radio (if they could afford one) and the kids were able to ride their bikes from one county to the next as long as they were home by dark... It was a simple time that was still evolving and it was still fun. I don't need my heart strings being pulled by some fabricated story about a grandmother who died while making her famous pork chops at the wake of the husbands sisters niece. Honestly, I'm okay with just her. She was consistent with her food, witty, fun, she had class. Even if some of you find that phony, I found it authentic and quirky and I loved her for that.

        • Food Fan says:

          Thank you, Guest!
          Its nice to know I'm not the only one who is getting burned-out on all this stuff about "stories."
          I can like (and tune-in to) a Cook's show just fine without it.

    • ceander says:

      Yes I agree with you. I grew up in the 50's so I was loving Emily.

      • Gloria says:

        Not fair to insist that she share with the nation about something in her past. I love Emily more than Martita, who just stood there waiting to be admired!!!

    • Food Fan says:

      I wonder why Bob T. even questioned Emily's genuineness.
      Go back and watch her video where she 1st meets Alton. (He would be able to tell). But he thinks Emily is the real deal and not phony! And since that audition-video, I dont recall Alton ever telling Emily to be more sincere. She already was. The '50 is who she is. Who cares why?
      She was a delight to watch.
      I dont know she had such nervousness all of a sudden, but others have screwed up more often, and there were many other positive moments where Emily shined, presentation and food. They are keeping the people who make more glaring mistakes, or more often...and so I now ask:
      What do you suppose the public-reaction would be, if either Nikki, Martita or Martie ends up winning this?

      • kay says:

        FoodFan, I agree! can't stand Marti, Nikki and Martita!

      • FN nerd says:

        I find it curious that a network that give us "The Chairman" on Iron Chef and Nadia G has the nerve to question whether Emily is genuine or playing a role. They don't really think we believe that nonsense about The Chairman and his uncle do we????

    • Sharon says:

      Bitchin' Kitchen pretty much has the type covered to the hilt--I never saw room for another retro show. And how long could such a show be sustained? Futhermore, she seemed out of ideas--would anyone watching really make Thanksgiving in a Bite? Blach....

      • JLF says:

        I guarantee I would watch Emily and her cheerful, charming demeanor over the Kitchen Bitch who is in no way genuine to me.

      • Deanna says:

        That show is on Cooking Channel, which (surprise!) is not available in all markets. I would have watched Emily. I want to know how to use a pressure cooker, and make jello with banana slices in it.

  5. NCGirl says:

    Martie "shines" a bit this week and she stays after being on the bottom so often??? I'm sorry that Emily didn't do well this week, although her food was wonderful. But, I'm sorry, I cannot stand Nikki - I don't care what personna she feels she's comfortable with - there's just nothing warm about this woman, nothing. Martita's 30 second "sound of silence" was terrible - that alone should have eliminated her, hands down. Emily didn't come across well?? My goodness, Martita just standing there staring at the judges was better? Not a chance. She's made mistakes on camera before, but this was inexcusable, just standing there and saying absolutely nothing.
    Justin is beginning to win me over more and more.

    • kay says:

      Justin is winning me over too!

      • Guest says:

        He's winning me over too!! He's been winning me over since the first episode of this show.I really loved his outrages cooking style.Beside Geoffrey Zakarian,already see's that there's an food network star in Justin.Any Justin fans keep on voting for Justin.If Justin,makes it to the finale.Lets all work together to get him the win ^_^.

    • EmF says:

      Amen to that. I really need some explaining on this elimination!

    • Wayne says:

      Well Nikkis been on the bottom and she remains so ...it should be ok for Martie to still be there.

      If the choice was Martie over Nikki, I'd rather Martie any day.

    • FunSized says:

      I agree with you about Martita!! What you realize you still have 30 seconds, so all you can think to do is stand there?!?!?! Please.....she should've gone home. Emily's producers challenge presentation was much better than MArtitas "mi little sister, Amanda" story.......anyone can make a burger for their little sister!! I'm sorry but there was no REAL story there. Emily had a really interesting story about her and her mom, plus her food was delicious!!! Bob said he didn't understand Martita's burger at all!!

      Though I must say I did suspect Martita would stay despite her performance because they couldnt have Giadas team eliminated 2 weeks in a row!!! (that was sarcasm by the way)

    • Food Fan says:

      Emily. I'm sad to see her go.
      One less-than-stellar night and that's it? Gone. Just like that. Doesnt seem right.
      Martie did do better, but ask yourself: if you look at the last 5 episodes and compare Martie vs. Emily, would YOU have sent Emily home? I wouldn't.
      NCGirl is right. What about Martita? What about Nikki?
      If they can forgive Martie for her earlier performances, they should cut Emily some slack for one night. There was still alot to like about her. We lost a good one tonight. By the way, if you look at Emily's video where she meets Alton for the 1st time, Alton never thought she was phony.

      • mommyfoot says:

        I agree with you! Emily wasn't phony. Nikki is the epitome of phoniness this season.

        • Homemaker 22 says:

          Emily has a myspace page and the pictures are from 2007, 2009, 2010. She has some where she is wearing normal clothes but she does have pictures of her in 50's clothes. I don't think it's phony. Clothing does not make you who you are, she has a style that I like. She had a passion. These people just did not like the fact that passion probably steams from something as simple as watching Grease or Crybaby or The Patty Duke Show. I don't care where she got it, I wanted to learn from her. A 50's recipe with an upgrade? Sounds like my kind of dinner!

          • Food Fan says:

            She just had one bad night. Her others presentaions were easy-to-listen-to. She had a sense of humor, and her food was good. I woulda easily tuned-in to see her show.
            Where will it go from here?
            I cant see Nikki lasting much longer (3 times in the pitch-room). Martie had a better night and is learning alot from the mentoring, but to me, she seems almost/not-quite where Malcolm is now, sorta. With Malcolm being ahead. Malcolm's food is better and if Martie "reverts back" to long-windedness even one more time, I think she's sunk.
            Martita---she was very good in the beginning, but has since done worse. She CAN be quite at-ease on camera, but:
            1. Im noticing that now when people post positively about her, those posts often get minuses by them. Perhaps she will yet make a comeback, but her support on thos Blog has really dropped. And also...
            2. Can she, or anybody else, just win this on "Confidence" ? Someone posted on here to the effect that during the 30-seconds of dead-air, she was standing there like she was waiting to be admired. Hmm. For some reason, the network is cutting her quite a bit of slack. Do they believe the opposite of Bobby Flay..i.e..if you can look and sound confident on camera, we can teach you better cooking? I really liked her video where she 1st meets Giada....(and have been since, let down)...but things are looking mighty controversial around her now.

    • MaryJoan says:

      I agree about Nikki-she comes across as a sort of an arrogant person in some respects, maybe spoiled.
      Yeah, it was hard to see who they let slide and who they got rid of-dog eat dog in the food network world, i guess...I would imagine that Alton truly felt bad for her. he is a soulful and smart guy and he knows who the real talent is.Maybe it isn't really over?

    • FanFare57 says:

      Martie's "shine" was because she was sweatin' during the prep phase. Her grinnin' monologue didn't capture my heart. I can no longer stand the sight or sound of her.

      • Wayne says:

        Oh come on now FanFare...she's attractive, likeable, and since she got dumped on earlier in life, let her just have her 15 minutes of fame. She won't be chosen. Shes in there with all those young folks. Let her enjoy herself. I thought how wonderful for those meanies she dealt with in school to see her now on tv...the one they rejected. Even if she doesn't win, it scores one for her, the underdog. I like that.

        • FanFare57 says:

          Wayne, that's a nice way to look at her. I hadn't considered it that way. Yes, good for her to make it on tv for her own personal stride. I'm just saying (perhaps too harshly) that her food and being hold no lure for me as a potential viewer.

    • @mom2mrnick says:

      I so agree! Emily had a point of view that is not already on the network, which is more than I can say for most of the others. Nikki is not likeable and really, another grilling show? So what if a woman is doing it, it is still grilling. They made a big mistake last night.

    • Donna says:

      Absolutely! I agree 100% and that doesn't happen often. I think you've got this thing nailed! Keep up the insight, FOOD NETWORK should be listening to US, their constant and faithful viewers, not the media. I'm starting to think that FOOD NETWORK is racially bias and blinded, against skill.

    • Elizabeth Emery says:

      I can't stand Nikki either, and I agree that Martita should have been eliminated from the competition for that 30 second sound of silence alone. If it is enough to get someone who has so much experience in front of the camera fired than it should been enough to disqualify Martita from the next round. I will say something about Emily, even though she is so bubbly and sweet I was a bit reserved about her fascination with the 1950's. I wasn't sure if her Retro Rad theme would really go over all that well with the viewers, as it would have done if she had her own show aired back in the Seventies when Happy Days and Laverne and Shirley were the most popular TV shows. Probably a theme based on the 1990's would have been more believable.

      • Jerilee says:

        That may be but I find the 90's culinarily flat. The most interesting idea I could come up with re-doing Hot Pockets, prepared frozen stuff, and anything instant!!! Although, now that I typed it out, doesn't sound like a bad idea. I rarely use those products, that's why I thought it was flat. Thank you Elizabeth Emery for a nifty idea!! Think I'll do some experimenting, but if I was on FN.....would make it easier!!!!! Thanks again. :)

    • Fenton Gal says:

      I can't stand Martie, Nikki or Martita and wouldn't watch their show if any one of them won. Emily was given a bad deal and want to see her back.

  6. M. Bodin says:

    Too manufactured and her call to nostalgia would not have held long-term. Her personal story would have provided a "hook" to hold viewer interest; without the hook it was all wardrobe.

    • Brenda says:

      There is nothing more manufactured than Martita. I cringe everytime she speaks. I am fed up with the story crap as well. Who care's?

    • jmt says:

      I grew up in the 50s. I didn't think much of that food then. I sure don't want to revisit it. Emily seemed like "1950s Barbie." Kind of creepy. However, it really should have been Martita that got the boot. The network is shamelessly promoting her, she has an unappealing personality, and we don't need another Mexican cooking show.

      • Jerilee says:

        I think that is Emily's point. Trying to take 50's food and kick it up a notch.

      • MoHub says:

        I also grew up in the '50s, and it's not a time I'd care to revisit. Emily's view of the period is based on a false ideal and a total lack of awareness of the reality of that decade.

        Just the same, though, I'd have preferred to see Nikki or Martita go first.

      • Deanna says:

        So you never have a craving for something your mamma used to make? I'm so sorry.

    • Wayne says:

      Hook? Don't know about that buddy. Hook not needed for me. I was just wanting a bit of entertainment & seeing them throw recipes together. Personally I didn't need to know the WHYS surrounding their chosen career. I dont know any other tv cooks hooks but I watch some of them anyway.

      And hey, I liked the wardrobe.

      • Food Fan says:

        Right on!
        And so, 2 questions persist:
        1. Martita---then why ARE they promoting her so much, despite poor viewer-reaction? You would think, if its all about RATINGS, then its all about how the viewers feel...and the way thats been going lately...makes ya wonder. ....and....
        2. I see several others on here besides myself who also feel that the Why's, and the back-stories just aren't that important. So why does the Network make such a big deal out of it?
        If the reply is: this Blog is on a tiny fraction of the total audience, then I come back with: but if people are taking the time to post and write their thoughts about how its a turn-off or at least that they dont care, on here...then you can bet there are many, many others who didn't bother to write it but feel the very same way!

    • Food Fan says:

      I dont need a "hook."
      I am noticing..its interesting that everyone who is anti-Emily is getting strong -19's, etc. and all the posts that are Pro-Emily are getting strong plus's.
      One more thing---in Emily's video where she 1st meets Alton, Alton never thought she was phony. He thinks she's real. I think he'd pick up on phoniness if it was there.

  7. KarenLeePA says:

    Aarti, I can't believe it either!! Emily was also one of my early favorites.

    I mean really, Martita? 30 secs. dead air? She's pretty with a nice accent, but I don't see anything else or the potential for anything else. For some reason I'm interested to find out more about Nikki...like why does she do that with her hair. LOL!

    Ultimately, I think we're the losers with Emily going home.

    • DDL says:

      Martita, nice accent?

      I could not help but notice when she spoke of her sister and peppers in the bottle that she suddenly dropped her "nice accent" and was speaking perfect English.

      She is a fake who is trying to capitalize on image she has cultivated as one which is marketable.

      • FanFare57 says:

        Thank you, DDL. I noticed the change of accent as well and wondered if it was only me who caught that. At that moment, I thought Martita was a phony as a $3 dollar bill.

        • majorwoody says:

          I made the exact same comment about Martitas phony, disappearing accent on another thread without having seen yours. I'm glad others feel the same way.

      • Violet says:

        Martita turns the accent on thicker when she needs too!

      • sammy b says:

        and that is exactly wha Giada does!!!!

    • FunSized says:

      I agree!! I think Nikki was much more interesting this week and actually DIDN'T want her to leave........maybe she is actually making progress!!

    • guest 2 says:

      the pretty/nice accent is politically correct, and very obvious in the judging....

    • Food Fan says:

      I really liked Martita in the beginning. Alot!
      Then, she let alot of folks down with attitude and how she treated others.
      Last challenge before tonight, her presentaion was a letdown.
      Tonight, she is in the pitch room and had 30 seconds of dead air.
      Yet, Emily has one poor night and POW, she's out.
      What about Nikki? What about Martie?

    • Calgal says:

      Sending Emily home makes me believe that they already have chosen the two finalists and Martita is one of them. I really liked Emily and if she doesn't want the world to know her life story that's Ok! I also feel we're the losers!

  8. Joyce says:

    I am not exactly an Emily fan...but she was a sweetheart....but how can someone leave 30 seconds of blank airtime and get a walk to next week......that should be the ticket off the show......

    • sammy b says:

      Because Martita is still a favorite for some reason. I will miss Emily!

      • Brenda says:

        I will miss Emily too. I am all about Justin now. Please NOT one more Mexican show.

        • cathy says:

          i agree brenda 1000 pecent

        • Violet says:

          Yes, please no more tacos! Just think of the wasted time and gas driving around trying to locate the ingredients for Justin's recipes and only to discover we cannot locate them. He belongs on TV but in another genre.

    • Kaye says:

      and to boot, Bob didn't even like her burger! These judges need a brain adjustment or something.

    • Lynn says:

      I completely agree, Joyce. Even the TV personality said if that would have been her empty 30 seconds, she would have been fired. I know the bottom line for F. Network is finding the most marketable person, but really---they either go very odd, very ethnic or blonde and cute.

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        I'm sure Guy would be delighted that you think he's cute! : ) Hmmmm...but seriously, when you mentioned 'blonde and cute' and consider that with Emily's ouster this week, there really is a glut of 'cute' on FN between toothpaste-commercial Melissa, Sandra Lee and her "cute" tablescapes; Marcela, Aarti and Sunny (ethnic and cute); The Neelys (lovey-dovey cute); Rachel Ray (bubbly brunette cute), Cupcake Wars competitors with their matchy-matchy pink apron and polka dot headbands, etc. Could be that Bob and Susie are purposely keeping some of the edgier hopefuls around longer this year.

    • Clove says:

      yep totally!!!!!!!

  9. kay says:

    Can't believe Emily was sent home and Martie, Nikki, and Martita are still here!

    • Adam says:

      actualyl I think all four of those ppl should have left by now

      • annie b says:

        Right on ! I couldn't agree with you more ! Martita, Nikki, and Martie should all be gone !

        I've been rooting for Ippy all along, but I think Emily also had an interesting POV and is a classy lady.

  10. Janis says:

    Emily was way more exciting to watch than Nikki, I can't believe they sent her home instead of Nikki.

    • iris45 says:

      Janis, I agree with you I'd never watch Nikki either. Nothing personally against her but she's just not food channel material in my opinion.