The Bear: FX's take on Kitchen Nightmares

We take a look at the highly rated kitchen comedy-drama taking Disney+ by storm.

Jessica Mckeown
15th November 2022
Image credit: IMDB
In the past month or so you may have seen an advert for The Bear on Disney+ but had no clue what it is actually about. To sum it up, it's a drama-filled fictional Kitchen Nightmares with Jeremy Allen White's Carmy yelling in the kitchen instead of Gordon Ramsay.

The Bear was released at the start of October and is quite a bingeable watch with eight episodes ranging from twenty to fifty minutes. The show follows Carmen "Carmy" Berzatto, an award-winning Chef de Cuisine who inherits his brother's failing restaurant following his death. Carmy is played by Jeremy Allen White, best known for his role as Phillip "Lip" Gallagher in the US version of Shameless (2011-2021). The show was released in the US back in late June and was renewed for a second season in July. With the way the season ended, the true transformation is coming for the former 'The Original Beef of Chicagoland" restaurant.

It's fast-paced, mirroring the kitchen environment and conveying how stressful and ruthless the restaurant and fine dining environments are in different ways.

The show is intense, dealing with some hard-hitting topics such as addiction and suicide but from the perspective of a loved one trying to understand. It's fast-paced, mirroring the kitchen environment and conveying how stressful and ruthless the restaurant and fine dining environments are in different ways. The shorter episodes feel especially stressful, particularly episode seven titled "Review" which has a lot packed into it's twenty-minute runtime.

The show has received 100% on Rotten Tomatoes and has a 91% audience score and it is clear why. It's well-written and the acting is phenomenal, particularly from Jeremy Allen White and Ayo Edebiri (Dickinson) who plays new hire Sydney. Oliver Platt plays Uncle Cicero, a Chicago Mobster which is a far cry from his role as Dr Daniel Charles in the Chicago TV Universe (Chicago MED, Chicago PD, Chicago Fire).

Image Credit: IMDB

There were several plotlines that were left open ended by the end of the season and I suspect will probably be explored in the second season. One such plotline was the restaurant receiving a C grade in the health inspection in the second episode with the inspector set to return a month later. Yet we never find out if the restaurant received a higher grade, not that it stopped any regular customers from dining there. Other unresolved plotlines include Carmy's late brother Michael's debts to their uncle Cicero and presumably other unseen antagonists like the man on the phone. You can tell when watching this show that it was written to have more seasons, which thankfully it has been renewed.

If you're looking for something fresh to watch between shows that require a lot of time dedication, The Bear is well worth a watch. Even if comedy-dramas aren't your usual genre, The Bear will dig its claws into you, inevitably finding yourself binging the episodes.

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