I was most pleased to learn that the original Iron Chef, the Japanese version which is only improved by the dubbing, is running on a spin-off of the Food Network, known as the Fine Living Channel. I can't stand the American version of the show, because it lacks that je ne sais quois. BUT…
I can barely stand this version either. It has everything it needs, with one exception. It has undubbed Takeshi Kaga. It has Dr. Yukio Hattori. It has Ota continually bursting in with "Fukui San!" It has live animals being slaughtered on television. It has "Allez Cuisine!" It has the strange judges like Korn, the actresses, or from unusual professions like fortune teller or "Rosanjin Scholar" (As an aside, if I were still musically inclined, I'd start a band called "Rosanjin Scholar.") Most importantly, it has Chen Kenichi, Hiroyuki Sakai, Rokusaburo Michiba / Masaharu Morimoto, and Masahiko Kobe.
BUT… Copyright control caught up. It doesn't have the soundtrack to the mediocre film "Backdraft" anymore. A most wonderful soundtrack, for this show, bombastic, melodramatic, overblown, everything that the soundtrack to a show about men in outlandish costumes cooking for a panel of Liberace-lookalikes and Japanese lower house members should be. Instead, it has a soundtrack that sounds as though it came from a bad videogame made in 1995, programmed by a tone-deaf teenager on a Mac. As great as the original is, the unwelcome substitution of scores makes the show near unwatchable.
A pity. Here's Iron Chef, as Chairman Kaga meant it to be heard: