The Bear Season 3: What Does the Review Mean for Carmy’s Restaurant?

FX’s ‘The Bear’ returns for a chaotic third season and delivers quite a ride to the audience. In the last season, it was all about making The Bear restaurant a reality, but now that they have it, the focus is on keeping it in the business. Naturally, it’s not easy, and Carmy and his crew find that out soon enough. As pressure mounts on them, especially from Uncle Jimmy, who invested in the business but now thinks he might have made a mistake, things seem to be falling apart. And by the end of the season, it all seems to hinge on the review by The Tribune. It finally arrives in the final scene of the season, and a glimpse of it reveals that things are not looking that good for Carmy’s restaurant. SPOILERS AHEAD

The Review’s Mixed Response is a Huge Sign for Carmy

Having successfully set up the restaurant, Carmy sets his sights on getting a Michelin star for The Bear. However, the drive to do that puts him on a path that isn’t necessarily liked by anyone else in the restaurant, and that affects their performance, which is reflected in the interview. We don’t get to see the whole article, but if words like “excellent,” “innovative,” “brilliant,” and “true culinary gem” are used, we also see stuff like “confusing,” “dissonance,” “inconsistent” and “disappointed.” This means that the reviewer didn’t exactly hate the place, as Carmy had been worrying about, but they weren’t thoroughly impressed by it either. Their review shows room for improvement in The Bear, and interestingly, that improvement must come from Carmy himself.

One of the things about Carmy is that he tends to be very controlling. Even though the restaurant is a collaboration, he likes to have the final say in everything and rarely, if ever, considers the opinions of others. When Sydney was brought on board, she made it clear that she wanted a true partnership. She wanted to work with Carmy, not under him, and in the beginning, he understood the point. However, when push comes to shove, it’s clear that he is too used to doing things his own way. And that might be the very thing keeping The Bear from the greatness Carmy wants for it.

This is also very subtly pointed out in one scene by Adam Shapiro. He runs into Sydney on his way to work and tells her that he visited The Bear one time. When she asked what he thought of the food, he said it was great and pointed out that it didn’t feel “very Carmy” to him. This is his way of saying that the dish was greater and fresher for having Sydney’s touch. Having worked with Carmy, Shapiro knows how intense he tends to be, which is why he is a bit surprised to have something that is not entirely Carmy. Later, this became one of the reasons why Shapiro reached out to Sydney with a new job offer.

The Bear Season 3 Proves Carmy is His Own Worst Enemy

There are a lot of good things about Carmy, but being able to work well with others is probably not one of them. In fact, as a leader, Carmy has a lot of shortcomings, and in truth, almost all the people who continue to work with him aren’t doing so just because of him. There are several factors motivating them, and Michael’s memory is one of those things. Interestingly, on some level, Carmy realizes that, and yet, he can’t help but micro-manage anything, and this damages his relationship with others, most notably with Sydney and Richie.

Despite coming on board as equal partners, Sydney and Richie quickly find themselves reduced to their stations. Carmy makes all the changes in the menu and brings about all the “non-negotiables” without consulting with anyone on the team. Even when he is repeatedly told by almost everyone that the idea of a new menu every day doesn’t seem feasible, at least in the beginning, he decides to go forward. As expected, it leads to a lot of chaos, not just on the floor but also in the financials of the restaurant, and stirs a lot more trouble than it’s worth.

Carmy doesn’t listen to anyone around him, but perhaps the review in The Tribune might serve as an eye-opener. Maybe it will help him see that all the points were negative words used to describe the restaurant and have his fingerprints all over it. If it doesn’t happen now, then all hope is gone for The Bear because there is a good chance that people will jump ship, and when one important person does it, others will follow suit. With its final scene, ‘The Bear’ Season 3 shows that it’s high time Carmy starts to let go a little bit, trust others in his team, and learn to work with them wholeheartedly.

Read More: Where Was The Bear Season 3 Filmed?