Five Contestants That Appear in Every Hell’s Kitchen Season

Next month, Hell’s Kitchen returns to FOX for what feels like its 87th season.

In truth, the flagship of the Gordon Ramsay-yelling-at-people-on-TV fleet is now in its 17th year.

That’s a long time for any show to do the same thing, so this year, FOX has tweaked the format a bit by picking contestants from a pool of people who’d achieved “Black Jacket” status — good enough to make it into the final five or six contestants on the show, but not quite good enough to be a finalist.

I’m not sure why they’re bothering with this arrangement. While there’s been a few standout chefs over the years, it all blurs together after 16 years.

Here are five contestants you’re almost guaranteed to see in any season of Hell’s Kitchen.

  1. A guy named Paul, Sean, Ryan or Kevin

Every season has had a dude named this. Also Paul. Or Paulie.

2. A straight up misogynist

Just a vile guy with a 1960s Mad Men view of the world. Want to hear some shaved-head fedora wearer use sentences that start with “These bitches…” 12 times an hour? He’s your man.

3. The older guy/the Italian guy

Most HK contestants are in their 20s or 30s, but every so often there’s a dude who’s been cooking as long as fifty-something Ramsay, and who considers himself Gordon’s equal. This is always a bad idea.

This guy is often also Italian American, and will preface every “interview” segment with “I’m Italian, I know how to make…”

He does not know how.

4. The guy/lady who’s going to blow Chef Ramsay away

This person will declare themselves the winner in the opening minutes of the season. They will be gone by the end of the first episode.

5. The chef

This is the person who keeps their head down, knows how to cook, doesn’t pick fights and learns from their mistakes. In other words, the type of person you’d actually hire to run your restaurant.