Watch it for...
The excitement and tension of being immersed in a gritty, real-world professional kitchen, with complicated characters you can’t help but love!
The Bear follows Carmy, a James Beard-nominated chef, who’s returned to his roots in Chicago to manage the family restaurant that his recently-deceased brother left to him. As Carmy struggles to invigorate and re-invent the failing restaurant his brother left behind, he must also confront his own complicated history with his family, Chicago, and his role as head chef. He’s aided—and sometimes hindered—by the ragtag crew of existing line cooks with big personalities, and the sous-chef, Sydney, he hires to help him manage the restaurant. It’s a heart-wrenching and honest look at what goes on, and who’s behind, the kitchen doors.
I read that The Bear was a realistic portrayal of what it's like working in a restaurant which sparked my curiosity. I've been a babysitter and I worked retail growing up, but I’ve never held a job at a restaurant, so I was interested in learning what goes on behind the scenes. Initially, I was surprised because each episode is extremely chaotic, loud, and fast-paced. The staff is constantly yelling, and on top of that there's a cacophony of kitchen sounds: pots banging, knives chopping, appliances mixing, and food sizzling.
While this wasn't my normal cup of tea, I absolutely loved this show and can't wait for season 2! Each character had their own charm and their own demons to contend with and I could feel both their joy and their pain day-to-day. The crew had to band together as best they could to try and save this restaurant. Unlike my experience with professional "friendships," they formed a "work family" that felt real and authentic thanks to a shared love of Chicago, family, and food.
The best part of this series was the ending. I won't spoil it, but please know that I love it when shows end on a happy note! This one made me smile.