YouTuber Sarah Z's Hilarious Ranking Of 'Weird Cooking Shows'

Canadian YouTuber Sarah Z is a Gen Z elderstatesperson who waxes intelligent on current pop culture — everything from Tumblr drama to reality TV. (The "Z" in Sarah's name and in the name of her generation seems to be mere coincidence. In her name, it's pronounced "Zed," according to her Twitter bio.) Sarah Z displayed a comprehensive knowledge of food TV, and cooking competitions in particular, with her latest YouTube post, titled "Crime Scene Kitchen is a Very Weird Cooking Show." 

That show, which concluded its first season on Fox in the U.S. last month, may have been weird, but it would have been better if it had been even weirder, Sarah says in her video review. She wished the producers and host Joel McHale had gone all-in on the crime scene gimmick. As it was, the concept appeared to have been tacked rather loosely onto a baking show that has yet to find its identity.

"It's called a crime scene," Sarah Z says. "Where's the raspberry sauce blood? Where's the dark humor? Where's my dead body, Joel McHale?" Arguably the most compelling part of Sarah Z's video wasn't the discussion of "Crime Scene Kitchen" but the scale she devised, called "Sazlow's Hierarchy of Weird Cooking Shows." It's a pyramid, with "normaler" shows at the base and "weirder" shows at the peak.

Sarah Z's 'weird cooking show' scale gets obscure

At the base of Sarah Z's food-show pyramid, "Sazlow's Hierarchy of Weird Cooking Shows" (via YouTube), you'll find some of the genre's staples: "The Great British Bake Off," "Top Chef," and "MasterChef." Except for the occasional "GBBO" celebrity season, these shows feature real chefs and experienced judges who take their jobs seriously. Ascending the pyramid, you get "Beat Bobby Flay" and the restaurant rescue series "Kitchen Nightmares." (Sorry, Robert Irvine, but "Restaurant: Impossible" doesn't make the list. do Canadians even get to see that show?)

Higher and weirder still on Sarah Z's scale come "Worst Cooks in America" and "Cutthroat Kitchen," a show Sarah Z admires. "It's just so fun and chill," she said. Just above "Cutthroat" on the weirdness scale is "Crime Scene Kitchen," which has been compared to the even weirder Quibi cooking program "Dishmantled," where contestants must recreate a dish after having the ingredients shot at them with a cannon. That's truly wacky next to the relatively sedate "Crime Scene Kitchen," wherein competitors comb through a kitchen to try to figure out, then reproduce, the dessert that had been baked there.

At the pinnacle of cooking-show weirdness is "The Colgate Culinary Hour," which Sarah Z says is a spinoff of "The Colgate Comedy Hour." The latter show aired in the 1950s and featured Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin, according to IMDb. Weird? Maybe. Obscure? Definitely. We'd like to see Sarah Z's weirdness pyramid filled out a little more. Where does Guy Fieri's body of work fit in? Maybe he needs his own pyramid.