Whew. That was a close one, huh?
I'm very happy with the end result, though I do feel badly that Richard was so shaken up. He still went out with class, though, and he made the right call admitting that he choked. Based on the judges' reaction of total shock, but ultimate understanding, it seems like they really liked him and respected him. Not surprisingly.
Honestly, when they showed the preview with Gail saying, "I'm shocked by what Richard just said," I thought he was going to say something bad about Lisa's ability to lead and her lack of any qualities that would suggest she should win. While that would be entirely out of character for Richard, it certainly would be shocking. And he was more openly negative in this episode than he has been at any point in the season. I wonder if maybe he wasn't just so sick of her that he couldn't keep it to himself any longer. Plus, by the time that talking head piece was filmed, he had to know that the public generally liked him - and generally couldn't stand Lisa to the core of her being.
Speaking of Lisa's suckiness. Back in the Glad room, did she really have to say to Stephanie, and in front of Richard, "I think you've got the first and third and I've got the second and fourth"? Besides that she was probably wrong (Richard's dessert was very well-received, at the very least), how classless was that? The look on Stephanie's face was kind of hilarious.
Finally, did anybody else get the sense that all the judges knew exactly how things were going to end up, but they had to put on a good show with the discussion so it didn't look like they gave it to Stephanie because they didn't like Lisa? We know, from their blogs, that they're more than aware of the viewers' anti-Lisa sentiment. They have to feel at least some of the same - especially since they're the ones dealing with her in her chinniest moments. But it's all about the food (except that I distinctly remember part of the season one finale judges' table including a discussion of who was a better leader and easier to get along with).
Anyway, every time I looked at Ted's face, he looked like he was about to bust into huge peals of laughter, mostly because he knew the decision had been made long before. And what was that random "we can hear the morning birds singing" comment? What is this, an all-night selection session during rush?
And...that is all. I liked this season a lot, and I'm sorry to see it end. I could watch Stephanie and Richard cook and act like grown-ups for several more weeks, I'm sure. And as for Lisa, well, the less said the better (at this point).