Ramsay aims to spotlight underrepresented food cultures on his Nat Geo show Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, but he isn't able to escape his boisterous persona and the long shadow of the late Bourdain, says Danny Chau. "There is nothing altruistic about television," says Chau. "There are always executives to curry favor with, sponsors to appease. The act of filming and interviewing, of gathering narratives and insights from others, is intrinsically transactional. Bourdain wasn’t exempt, but the ways in which he and the show producers helped frame the way viewers saw other parts of the world felt as if it was born of a warmer, empathetic calling. That is lacking in a show like Uncharted, which was renewed for a second season before it even premiered; there is cynicism baked into every scene of the show, and it distracts from the legitimately gorgeous portrayals of civilian life in different parts of the world. These days, the best food television dives deeper, thoughtfully putting a magnifying glass to what can seem like second nature in certain cultures—the need to craft an overarching narrative might not be necessary. The stories tell themselves."
TOPICS: Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, National Geographic, Anthony Bourdain, Gordon Ramsay