Combining three American loves — food, celebrity and competition — it’s no wonder Top Chef has been a reality favorite since its inaugural season in 2006. The competition show pits real-life chefs against one another in a series of cook-offs and has inspired nearly half a dozen spin-offs. However, the professionalism of the show’s contestants definitely hasn’t precluded a dose of bad behavior every now and then.
Near the end of Top Chef‘s second season, remaining contestants Cliff, Ilan, Sam and Elia took part in a night of drunken revelry, with Elia getting the wild idea of shaving her head. However, it seemed that that wasn’t quite enough carousing for the troublemaking chefs as they decided to accost the other remaining contestant, Marcel — who’d often been the odd man out throughout the season — and shave his head as well. As Cliff pounced on the sleeping Marcel, wrestling him from bed and dragging him to the floor as the others looked on, what started as a prank quickly took a dark turn: Marcel was pinned to the ground, calling out for help. While he managed to wrestle free both unscathed and unshaved, the judges were not pleased with the incident. Cliff was disqualified from the show for his aggressive behavior, and Marcel went on to finish in second place for the season.