Home Top News Culinary family drama The Bear serves up 3rd season

Culinary family drama The Bear serves up 3rd season

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IN THE world of fine dining, chefs and restaurateurs must push themselves hard and work out every single detail to elevate their establishments to the highest level. Maintaining this high level is another problem.

The first two seasons of TV show The Bear saw the intensely driven Carmen “Carmy” Berzatto (played by Jeremy Allen White) working with his ragtag crew to transform the family-run beef stand The Beef into the fine dining restaurant The Bear — but now they must navigate the struggles of actually running it.

At his side are his talented sous chef and business partner Sydney Adamu (played by Ayo Edebiri) and his stubborn cousin-turned-maître d’, Richard “Richie” Jerimovich (Ebon Moss-Bachrach). Season Three of The Bear follows their battle keeping their Chicago restaurant afloat in their quest for culinary excellence, all while working through feelings of grief and family trauma.

The first season garnered the show an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series while Mr. White, Ms. Edebiri, and Mr. Moss-Bachrach earned acting Emmys for their roles. Following the acclaim of its second season, The Bear season three premiered on June 27 on Disney+, with 10 episodes in total.

The half-hour series also stars Abby Elliott, Lionel Boyce, Liza Colón-Zayas, and Matty Matheson, with Jon Bernthal playing Michael “Mikey” Berzatto, Carmy’s older brother who killed himself before the events of the show.

While the story of The Bear is fictional, it is inspired by real-life stories of restaurants and chefs with a passion for the cutthroat culinary industry, particularly in Chicago, according to executive producer Matty Matheson, who also plays the minor role of Neil Fak.

“More little tidbits are gonna come out. Chris [Storer, the showrunner] loves Chicago very much and the rest of us have all fallen in love with it dearly,” Mr. Matheson said at a press conference on June 25 that was livestreamed from the United States.

The Beef was inspired by an actual Italian beef restaurant in River North called Mr. Beef, founded by Joe Zucchero in 1979. The sibling duo at the helm of The Bear — creator Christopher Storer and culinary producer Courtney Storer — encourage the cast and crew to immerse themselves in Chicago’s food scene.

On portraying an intensely focused head chef, Jeremy Allen White said that the effect is having a newfound “hypersensitivity to how restaurants work.”

“Carmy continues to do what he does best, which is be incredibly avoidant of all the issues he has going on. We’ll see more of that this season. He sort of buries himself in his work and tries to challenge himself; in doing so, it really makes him become challenging to be around,” he said.

For Ayo Edebiri, whose character is the only newcomer to the restaurant after the death of Mickey Berzatto who used to handle it, the inherent darkness in the show makes the comedy more poignant.

“Grief touches them all in different ways. It’s one of the connecting threads of the show, how people deal with it throughout the seasons. This show is dark, but it has really beautiful and light moments too, and you get to take that with you,” she said.

Both Mr. White and Ms. Edebiri were asked if their characters would develop a romance in addition to being business partners, to which they responded with a resounding no.

The latter explained: “Sydney really looks up to Carmy but is in the thick of being in a business with him, something she now realizes she idealized before they started working together.”

Ebon Moss-Bachrach, whose character grew from the impulsive loser cousin to the eager maître d’ over the course of the first two seasons, said that all the characters’ growth is “forward and back; not a clear, one-direction path.”

“I think Richie is in a place where he’s been exposed to a more evolved way of being, and he sees a path to head towards. But it’s one thing to see a path and another thing to walk it,” he explained.

“Grief is the river that runs through all of us and it’s one of the common things we share in the human experience. Everyone deals with it in their own way.”

Meanwhile, Mr. Matheson said that those who watch The Bear to see how they depict delicious, potential Michelin-starred dishes onscreen will not be disappointed.

“Courtney [Storer] handles a lot of menu development and ideation of what Carmy and Syd would be thinking, how the food they make can reflect who they are. An entire team of chefs bring that to life. We’re just trying to make thoughtful food and push the envelope,” he said.

The Bear was created by Christopher Storer, who acts as executive producer alongside Josh Senior, Joanna Calo, Cooper Wehde, Tyson Bidner, Matty Matheson, and Hiro Murai. Courtney Storer serves as a co-executive producer and culinary producer. The series is produced by FX Productions.

Its third season is out now on Disney+. — Brontë H. Lacsamana

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