Interviews

Celebrity Chef Robert Irvine's Latest Dish

The jacked chef is cooking up a second TV career as a tough-love mentor to people in dire circumstances on "The Robert Irvine Show."

“When you strip it all away, this is what gets me out of bed in the morning—the opportunity to make a real difference in people’s lives,” Irvine says. “And to positively affect the lives of those who defend our freedom is the cause that is closest to my heart. All the success I have I owe to the fact that I live in a free society in the greatest nation on Earth. That freedom is made possible by the selfless sacrifice of our men and women in uniform. No amount of money I donate or benefits that I attend can ever scratch the surface of the debt we owe to these men and women and their families, but it is imperative that we try. It all starts to fall apart if we fail to show our gratitude.”

Call time hits and Irvine springs to his feet to meet a pair of producers outside of his dressing room. There’s minimum banter as they make their way down to the set, a nervous energy hanging over the elevator. The trio walks backstage where you can hear the soft rumble of the live audience speaking in hushed tones. Irvine thumbs through his notes one last time, takes a deep breath, and then bounds onto the stage when he’s announced. He’s met with thunderous applause.

Over the course of the next eight hours, Irvine films the first two episodes of his new show, but astoundingly, it looks like his fifth year on the set, not his first day. The problems his guests present to him are unfathomable to the average Joe: rampant cheating, estranged mothers and daughters, and wounds that seem like they might never heal. Failing to conform to daytime convention, Irvine doesn’t treat his guests as a spectacle but affords them dignity and respect. He offers his tough love in the form of common-sense solutions. When a situation calls for it, he sets his guests up with professional help. All the while, he preaches what he first learned in the gym: Real, lasting change takes time. You can’t fix your life in minutes on a TV show, but you can make a commitment to do so.

The Robert Irvine Show airs Monday through Friday on the CW. Check your local listings.

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