Is Great Chocolate Showdown Scripted or Real?

Image Credit: Daniel Hewett/The CW

As might be evident, the star of the cooking series, ‘Great Chocolate Showdown,’ is chocolate, as the participants give it their all to prepare mouthwatering dishes using this particularly beloved ingredient. Having first aired in 2020, the show features Steven Hodge, Anna Olson, and Cynthia Stroud as judges who have the immense pleasure of tasting everything the contestants make. As much love as the show has gotten from its viewers, a few people cannot help but wonder if the whole competition is as legitimate as it portrays itself to be. So, let’s explore the answer together, shall we?

Is Great Chocolate Showdown Scripted?

No, we do not believe ‘Great Chocolate Showdown’ is scripted. That said, certain parts of the show may be pre-planned or pre-written, yet neither seems to affect the actual outcomes of the cooking competition itself. In fact, the seemingly prepared parts of the episodes are likely done to allow for efficient production while maintaining cohesion to make the show more palatable to the viewers.

Image Credit: Daniel Hewett/The CW

So which parts of the cooking show might have been planned beforehand, you ask? Look no further than the three judges’ hosting segments when discussing upcoming challenges or addressing the viewers. Judge Steve Hodge has even shared that this part of the process helps ensure that what they say is something the viewers understand without creating much confusion.

As someone used to general cooking shows on platforms like CTV Morning Live and Global News, Hodge has admitted that scripting his introductory lines helps refine his thoughts. Additionally, he showcased his belief in the showrunners’ knowledge of what the viewers want. As someone used to talking on various shows with “no filter,” Hodge seems to appreciate how his lines are written in a way that matches his personality and allows him to express himself adequately. Nevertheless, it does not seem like this particular preparation extends to the judgment part of the show.

Yet, Hodge emphasized the authenticity of the cooking competition in a March 2021 interview with West Vancouver. He shared, “They have a term in TV called ‘hurry up and wait’ – but in the Great Chocolate Showdown, when you see the bakers have two hours on a bake, that is absolutely real. Obviously, cameras have to move, so if your cameras are facing us and we say something, then they want the shot from behind, so then we’ll have to get up to reposition to get that shot. But the actual baking is real, and it’s stressful for the bakers.”

Image Credit: Jeremy Kohm/AFTwentyThree Productions Inc

“And there are culinary producers on the floor that are pushing the contestants and reminding them they’ve got 10 minutes left, or ‘you better be focusing on that.’ The contestants stress themselves so much. It’s actually quite funny to see because a lot of them actually have a background and practice at home before they come on the show – and they can cook. The one thing they always forget is time management,” continued the chef.

Another key factor that is likely pre-planned is the format of each episode. The challenges given to the contestants are far from random and have probably been well thought out by several experts to create a task that not only truly challenges the cast members but would also impress the viewers. This kind of work, we feel, is similar to how preparations are made for a race, including the markings of a track, yet the race itself is left unaffected. After all, the more planned a competition is, the more likely it is to generate intriguing results and entertain the masses.

This leaves us to address the ultimate question is — ‘Great Chocolate Showdown’ a legitimate competition series? The answer, keeping all factors in mind, seems to be a resounding yes. From all accounts, the show resembles a well-thought-out competition where the hosts (who in this case also happen to be the judges) are indeed given scripts while discussing the concept of the series, but such work does not seem to have affected their judgment. Additionally, while much thought is put into how the challenges are to take place, the competitors’ performance seems to be entirely dependent on themselves and their skillset.

Read More: Where is Great Chocolate Showdown Filmed?