Food Network Star: Is Joy Being Exploited for her Cuisine Ignorance?

My husband and I have been watching Food Network Star this season and I think I have an idea who the finalists will be.  I won’t say whom just yet, though.  However, I want to talk about one contestant – Joy.  I often wonder WHY she’s even on.  Her cooking style is very…mom-like.  People who watch Food Network don’t watch it just to cook foods that they already know how to do – at least not this Food Network viewer.  Her ignorance on international cuisine is very apparent as well.  Take for example, the episode which aired on June 26.  She was completely grossed out by kimchi.  Okay, so kimchi can stink and not everyone’s cup of tea.  It can taste weird, but to make a face as if she were five years old trying something new is just not Food Network host-ready.  So is she there just so people could make fun of her stupidity?

 

The kimchi incident wasn’t the first time this happened.  If I recall this season correctly, she has not recognized pho, pad thai or gyro.  These are things one often finds at MALL FOOD COURTS (okay, maybe not pho, but definitely pad thai).  She’s also called a blender, a “smoothie maker.”  Apparently some brands do market their blenders – especially smaller ones – as “smoothie makers,” but that’s just not the “standard” term.  WHY IS SHE LIKE THIS???!!!!!!  This woman is most definitely a walking stereotype of a southerner.  If I were from the US south, I’d complain!

kimchi

This stuff isn’t a favourite to everyone, but DON’T MAKE A FACE!!!!!

So yes, I DO personally believe she’s on the show just so people could make nasty comments about her ignorance.  While sure, many people who HAVE the Food Network might not be all that sophisticated themselves, but I’m sure they’d still be a bit more polite about foods they have not come across – more so than Joy.  No one else on the show is like her at all.  It’s a form of exploitation, but that’s what reality shows do, right?  I mean, practically every contestant somehow exaggerates at least one element of themselves (Damiano, I’m looking at YOU!!!).

 

Kimchi image credit: Kongsak/Shutterstock

About Cynthia Cheng Mintz


Cynthia Cheng Mintz is the founder and webitor-in-chief of this site and the petite-focused site, Shorty Stories. She has also written for other publications including the Toronto Star and has blogged for The Huffington Post. Her first novel, Aspirations, was published in 2007. Outside of writing, Cynthia researches and advises philanthropic ideas for family funds and foundations and also volunteers.

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Cynthia Cheng Mintz

Cynthia Cheng Mintz is the founder and webitor-in-chief of this site and the petite-focused site, Shorty Stories. She has also written for other publications including the Toronto Star and has blogged for The Huffington Post. Her first novel, Aspirations, was published in 2007. Outside of writing, Cynthia researches and advises philanthropic ideas for family funds and foundations and also volunteers.