It's aliiive! Culinary competition shows take a freaky turn with Spike's Frankenfood, in which amateur chefs dream up oddball food combos (peanut-butter-and-jelly fish sticks, anyone?) for a chance to get their creations on the menu at a hot restaurant. Top judge, chef Josh Capon, set aside his spit bucket to get dishy with us.
TV Guide Magazine: This is like fusion cuisine by Satan. How can you bear to eat some of this stuff?
Josh Capon: First of all, it's the job. I've got no choice! But when somebody makes a banana split, putting the ice cream into a jalapeno bratwurst instead of a banana, I am instantly intrigued. It's so wild, how can you not try it?
TV Guide Magazine: And there's always hope that someone will develop a future classic, right?
Capon: That would be the greatest reward. People forget there are already Frankenfoods out there that have been popular for a long time — buffalo wings, chicken and waffles, the Reuben sandwich, chocolate-peanut butter cups. Look at the cronut! Some guy smashes together a donut and a croissant and there's a line to buy 'em seven blocks long every morning at 5 a.m.
TV Guide Magazine: Has there ever been a creation so ghastly you refused to try it?
Capon: [Laughs] I wish I had that option. That's why all the judges have their spit buckets nearby — and, boy, do we use them! You really question the sanity of certain contestants. Sometimes the dishes are so horrifying you can't tell who's serious and who's just looking to make a splash on TV.
TV Guide Magazine: Yet you're such a mensch. You're never rude!
Capon: I never want to hurt anyone's feelings. We have women who will prepare something really, truly terrible and then say, "My husband thinks this is dee-licious!" And I'm thinking, "Does he really, lady, or is he just telling you what you want to hear?" It's like when your wife says, "Do these pants make me look fat?" You've gotta be really careful how you answer.
Frankenfood airs Sundays at 10/9c on Spike.