Everything That Went Wrong With Netflix's Final Table

Critics do not like Netflix's Final Table. Quartz magazine describes episodes as "cringe-worthy." The Guardian says the show is "big, bombastic, and barely watchable." The Decider describes the effort as, "A pretentious display of global overconsumption." 

Okay, so critics really don't like Final Table – so what went wrong with this cooking showBy all accounts, the talent was there. Master chefs from around the globe showed up to compete for the honor of sitting at the "final table," sort of like joining the Iron Chef elite (at least that's how we understand it). Decider writers go on to note, however, that the stakes don't seem to have as much meaning as other cooking shows. Unlike young prep cooks working towards a prize and recognition needed to open their own restaurant, many of these contestants have already achieved coveted Michelin stars and success, making a TV-based crown seem small by comparison.

Yet this reward is juxtaposed against a Hunger Games-sized audience and arena.

Final Table feels unfinished

A live audience requires a charismatic host. The Guardian, however, describes Andrew Knowlton as, "... imagine David Tennant with all the charisma squeezed out of him and replaced with a single terrified expression suggesting Davros is bearing down on him." 

The rapid-fire pace of the original 24 contestants combined with the arena-sized audience simply creates a vibe of chaos as opposed to a fine appreciation of some of the world's best artisans shown in Chef's Table on the same network. Viewers lack the ability to imagine the flavors and visualize the aromas and technique that's the mark of an impressive cooking show. 

Where The Great British Baking Show allows food to be the star, Final Table provides tone-deaf commentary atop world-class cuisine. This dull and quite questionably-biased (both gender-based and culturally) take on some of the world's best chefs leaves viewers uninspired, with an un-binge-able show.

Netflix has provided many culinary hits — but this one is clearly a miss.