The “previously on” montage centers mostly on Jamie’s relationship with DJ Rod at the radio station. And as we learned from last week’s preview, this week Jamie and Rod will be making a very important bet.
This episode starts with Jamie visiting the radio station again, and once again Rod has nothing but insults. He doesn’t think Jamie’s Kitchen is going to work, he doesn’t trust Jamie, he has nothing positive to say about the revolution. So off the air, Jamie bets Rod that he can teach 1,000 people to cook in five days. Rod’s response: “It’s not going to happen. I can’t get a thousand people to listen to the show! He’s not going to win.” Stay charming, Rod.
Time to recruit a thousand cooks, after the jump!
Jamie goes on the local morning TV shows and other radio stations to drum up interest in learning to cook — he’s inviting anyone who’s interested to come down to the kitchen. DJ Rod, on the other hand, tells his listeners about the bet and tells everyone that they should stay away. Rod told Jamie he was worried about how the TV show was going to portray the experiment, but he’s sure not doing much to make himself appealing to the viewers.
Because Huntington is a college town, Jamie decides to go over to Marshall University to visit the students and staff. He’s going to put together a dancing flash mob! With a choreographer and everything! From the rehearsals, it looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun. It certainly won’t be an Oprah/”I Gotta Feeling”-grade flash mob, but that thing was massive. At noon, the dancers show up at the center of campus, and the flash mob begins. It’s grand and adorable and silly, and I loved watching it. Afterward, students said that they’d love to go down to the Kitchen, and that the flash mob was the coolest thing they’d ever seen.
The next day, Jamie heads down to the kitchen. Today is cook-a-thon day, and he has three days left to get his thousand people. He has a huge bulletin board with a grid on it, and he has to fill every square with a picture. His first group arrives, and it’s an excellent turnout. Everyone moves out to the street, and 45 people at a time cook the stir fry. Group after group learn the recipe, and some of Jamie’s friends stop by — Marisa from the high school brigade, Pastor Steve, Justin Edwards. DJ Rod also stops by, but he refuses to cook. He does express his amazement at the turnout, however. At the end of the day, Jamie fills the board with pictures of “police women, firemen, postmen, paramedics, rockers, foxy chicks, [and] old mannies.” Not since Ferris Bueller has one man put together such a diverse group of fans — they all adore Jamie (they think he’s a righteous dude).
2 days left, 554 people left to go. He tackled almost half of his goal in one day. Go, Huntington! Jamie visits the steel mill, where he teaches the stir fry and the guys give him an American flag-emblazoned hard hat. Back at the Kitchen, a crowd of employees from the elementary school show up to become part of the thousand, and even Alice shows up.
A quote now, from DJ Rod: “He hasn’t reached a thousand; I think he’s up to about 700, is what I understand. One person cannot change 50,000 people in the city of Huntington, West Virginia.” ARE YOU KIDDING ME? The guy taught 700 people to cook a dish in two days, and you’re still bagging on him this hard? DJ Rod, shame shame SHAME.
Jamie goes on Marshall TV and does a cooking segment, to draw in more of the college crowd. He asks the viewers to send in a picture of themselves with the dish they’ve cooked, so they can join the thousand. Meanwhile, DJ Rod wishes Jamie would go back across the pond and never darken Huntington’s door again. SHAME.
1 day left, 234 people left to go. Jamie doesn’t think he’s going to make it, but he’s decided to ask for Rod’s help. He meets Rod at a local mortuary, so he can tell Rod more about the reasons he’s come to Huntington. They go into a viewing room, and there’s a regular-sized coffin next to one that’s larger than a queen-sized bed. In fact, it might be larger than a king. The next visit is to the Kitchen, where Rod meets the high school brigade and members of the Edwards family. Mrs. Edwards tells Rod about her son Justin, young Marisa tells Rod about her dad. Brittany tells Rod that because of her liver, she could only have 5 to 7 years left. A tear appears in Rod’s eye, and he says he’s amazed. Who knows if his whole turnaround (or even his whole attitude to begin with) was planned. Either way, I hope this means I won’t have the urge to throw things at my TV anymore.
109 people remain of the thousand. Time and space suddenly warp, because I thought yesterday was the last day. I guess when they’ve told us things like “1 day left,” they mean “1 day after this day left.” And what do you know — The Rod and Rocky show is broadcasting live from Jamie’s Kitchen. Rod tells his listeners to come down to the Kitchen, learn to cook, and help him lose the bet. And for the first time, I noticed that the building number of Jamie’s Kitchen is 911. Apt! There’s a local news outlet there, as well as a crew from Good Morning America. There’s a quick product placement for Brand X frozen vegetables (What is this, The Biggest Loser?) and the town gets cooking. The mayor cooks. Firemen cook. Cameron Mathison (formerly of All My Children, loser of Dancing with the Stars) cooks on behalf of Good Morning America. Governor Joe Manchin cooks. (And has a manly chin.) And finally, DJ Rod cooks! He’s even cook number one thousand, and now he owes Jamie a beer.
Next week, Jamie meets with the man who can help get the funding the program needs. But obstacles are in his way! This guy disagrees with the government statistic about Huntington’s ill health, and Alice reports that the kids just don’t like some of the menu plans. With a dramatic preview like this, I’m sure everything will actually come out just fine.