Twitch Is Fixing the One Reason I Never Watch Cooking Shows

October 26, 2016

5:50 pm

I never watch cooking shows.

It’s not that the shows aren’t great: Many are. It’s not that Alton Brown isn’t smart and charismatic. It isn’t that Anthony Bourdain doesn’t unpack some great sociopolitical commentary along with his meals. It’s that I hate to stare at food that I can’t personally eat. Cooking shows always make me hungry, and whatever I have in my fridge will never taste as satisfying as that TV food looks.

Now live streaming service Twitch is tackling that problem: They’ve announced plans for a live cooking show that will offer an ingredient list prior to the show’s airing, so that audiences can order the right ones and can cooking alongside the host.

The show, “ChefShock,” will run for a two-hour period, five days a week, and is hosted by Justin Warner, former winner of “Food Network Star.” It’s a great idea for a lot of reasons.

It’s a Smart Way to Use New Tech

Tech advancements shouldn’t be gimmicks. Smartwatches aren’t selling because they can’t add an immediately useful benefit that people can’t already get with their smartphones already. No new technology will take off it you can’t use it. Now, we’ve got a great use for grocery delivery and an interconnected audience.

It’s a Good Brand Extension for Twitch

Twitch is built off of the concept of audience interaction. Because it’s all live, the streamer can respond to his or her audience in real time, playing a game based of off their suggestions or taking audience requests while live-streaming music. Now, that same principle is being used to create an original cooking show: Audience member will have a tactile connection to “ChefShock” as they watch it.

And the host will interact with them, too, Variety reports:

“In ‘ChefShock,’ Warner will demonstrate how to prep different recipes while interacting with his viewers — who can ask him questions throughout the program.”

It Makes a Cooking Show Actually Real

We all know that part of the show where the chef sticks a souffle in the oven, there’s a cheesy dissolve effect, and we jump ahead an hour to see a majestically towering pastry. It saves time, but it feels like a fake-out. Since it’s live, Chefshock can’t hide any failures. Everyone will be able to compare their finished meal with the show’s.

Sound fun? Tune in Monday through Friday, starting Monday, Oct. 31, at 5 p.m. Pacific. The link: twitch.tv/chefshock.

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Adam is a writer with an interest in a variety of mediums, from podcasts to comic books to video essays to novels to blogging — too many, basically. He's based out of Seattle, and remains a staunch defender of his state's slogan: "sayWA." In his spare time, he recommends articles about science fiction on Twitter, @AdamRRowe

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