King of the Iron Chefs (spoilers)

Just watched Chen mercilessly trounce Kobe’s hiney all over Kitchen Stadium.

I’m an avid Iron Chef watcher, but I’m confused. This new(?) King of the Iron Chef’s tournament says that these were the final rounds before Chairman Kaga (bless his bell pepper) closed the stadium forever. The show dated from 1999.

Now, I suspect that we are just getting rerun syndication over here in the States. Are there any Japanese dopers that can give the current state of affairs of the Iron Chef saga? Did Kitchen Stadium really close? My fiance and I thought the Chairman looked very wan and pale, not in good health. My fiance said she saw signs of a recent stroke in his face. Is he in good health? Has he retired, or are the glorious epic battles still being fought to this day?

And what the heck is “Tokyo X”?

Best theme ingredient name ever! Sounds like an anime title. Surely we in the US are decades behind the Japanese in the genetic engineering of pigs! :smiley: :wink:

As to why the show is no longer in production, perhaps Japanese TV producers know the meaning to the phrase “quit while you are ahead”, as opposed to their American counterparts.

I’m a huge “Iron Chef” fan (wearing a t-shirt with a huge yellow pepper, with a bite taken out of it, right now actually). It was explained to me that in Japan, it’s common to end a popular series after just a few years. says that weekly production shut down in 1999, but there would be intermittent special episodes shot. The actor who played Chairman Kaga (Kaga Takeshi) was still appearing in stage plays as recently as 2001, so it doesn’t appear he’s in poor health.

I saw the very end of this episode the other day. It’s really too bad they have the two best on the same side of the bracket in the semi’s.

Which is really too bad since Chen stands no chance against either Sakai or Morimoto. :slight_smile:

Ok so if it ended in 1999… what was with the Bobby Flay battles in 2001 and 2002?

Special “return engagements”?

"Which is really too bad since Chen stands no chance against either Sakai or Morimoto. "

Ha! Morimoto is a swaggering peacock, an irreverent trickster with no respect for tradition! Sakai has no zip or pizazz, he’s never been able to overcome his addiction to truffles and foi gras! Long live Chen!

Take a look at this page frome the site. It shows when all the episodes were taped (in Japan), and whether they were broadcast on the Food Network. You’ll see that only two battles were filmed in 2002; two in 2001 (including the famous Morimoto vs. Flay re-match); and three battles in 2000 (including the New York City appearance of Flay). Before that, they were filmed for entire seasons, every week back to 1993.

So yes, the Flay episodes were one-off specials, targeted specifically at the US audiences that had by then developed a taste for “Iron Chef.”

Did anybody notice Kobe’s face when the theme ingredient was announced? What’s Japanese for “sheeeeee-it!”? I would have preferred it if it had been a more “neutral” food, like, say, llama or porcupine (Hattori: “gourmets appreciate the prickiness”), than something that’s in half the entrees at your local Chinese ristorante*. I tells ya, the fix was in.
*I mean pork, of course, not necessarily Tokyo X, The Other, Other White Meat.

But what was up with the promo for these shows with the chairman breaking the wine glass?!?!
That look on his face really was pretty freaky. And will the final theme ingredient be live kittens or live orphans?

The problem is that Food network has already spoiled who won: they aired the 20th century battle special prior to this, and they tell you who won in that. Which takes a lot of the fun out of it. Thanks a lot, Food network.

It’s also mentioned in the Official Iron Chef book, Apos. Not to mention the results of the semifinals, the theme ingredients for each match, plus the identity of the “world famous chef” the King of the Iron Chefs will face.

When will this episode air? And why the heck have they stopped showing episodes on Friday nights?

And Chen could kick Sakai’s satin-clad ass all over the prefecture.

What is Tokyo X? A new theme park?

Hey, I’m a new convert to Iron Chef and I don’t know who wins, so nobody spoil it, please!!!

In fact I was just about to post a few questions about the show, so might as well do it here:

  1. Why is Chairman Kaga’s the only voice that isn’t dubbed? Does he have a special contract?

  2. Is the female commentator really as ditzy as the translator makes her sound?

  3. In the regular Iron Chef battles, what do the challengers win if they beat the Iron Chef? (Not that I’ve seen it happen yet.) Do the losers at least get a home version of the game?

Bobby Flaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyy!!


As I mentioned, I got the book (well, it was really a present for someone else who’s a fan, but I read it first :smiley: ) It mentioned that the people at the Food Network who purchased the episodes decided that Kaga’s acting voice was “dynamic” enough to add something to the show, even if it had to be subtitled. You can imagine why the other voices aren’t subtitled–you’d have to be a speed-reader to understand the show.

Dunno on that one–maybe some of our Japan-based Dopers can help out?

The winners get the “ovation and fame of the people forever,” whatever that means. The book explained that, in the early days of the show, it was really hard to get chefs to appear. After the show became popular in Japan, chefs appeared because it was free advertising for their restaurants, and, let’s face it, because it’s a big ego boost to be on TV.

What do you win?

You win pride. In many Japanese game shows the prizes are not very ‘big’ by US standards. These chefs who come in to compete are all top chefs and this is only for ‘bragging rights’. Really it is about a test of skill and nothing more.

Winning is good for a challenger’s business, too. Here is how Ron Siegel’s win over Sakai-san in a lobster battle won him not only “the people’s ovation and fame forever” but a lot of customers at his San Francisco eatery.

That USA Network thing with William Shatner pretending to be The Chairman, at “Kitchen Arena” in Las Vegas, never happened. Wipe it from your memory. It never happened, do you hear?

Out of curiousity, is that the episode where one of the chefs used lobster to lend flavor to asparagus? Or was that the asparagus episode (assuming they had one)?

I don’t recall, and this synopsis doesn’t help. I do remember seeing Sakai chop up a lobster to flavor something in one of his shows, but he’s done (and lost) several lobster battles.

Ron Siegel is in the opening credits - he’s the tall blond guy with the mustache, hugging his assistants (with whom he did not share a language).