Tom, Padma, Gail and Tony are bringing back some of the best non-winners from previous seasons to compete for the season 8 crown. I would have liked it better if they'd called it 'Heroes & Villains' but 'All-Stars' is fine, too.
18 chef-testants will battle it out for the title as well as (I'm assuming) the Food & Wine feature and the cash from Glad or Dove or Aamco or whatever sponsor is ponying up the cash money this time around.
With tonight's premiere featuring the chefs having to recreate the dish that got them eliminated it sounds like we hit the ground running and we won't have to mess around with any oyster shucking or celery chopping lightning eliminations. And since there aren't any Clays or always-disappointing Baltimore chefs in the bunch, there won't be a whole lot of room for error either.
In order to bring my wretched odds-making skills from the NFL ranks into the reality TV arena (really, I took the Cardinals +1.5 on Monday? really?!) I've split the 18 returning chefs into three groups of six... Favorites, Competitors and Long Shots, names listed alphabetically and personal prejudices definitely taken into account.