MasterChef has eleven seasons to date and has only two seasons where the eliminated chefs got a chance to return to compete, namely, season three and four.
MasterChef has been airing on the FOX Network since 2010. The Gordon Ramsay cooking competition reality show has been a flagship series for the network since, and shows no signs of stopping anytime soon, as it continues to air in 2022. Currently, fans are awaiting the twelfth to air.
A detail that the show has let go of in recent seasons which other spin-offs of the show have not, is the episode which allowed eliminated contestants from previous seasons to return and compete with each other to earn their way back onto the show. MasterChef (US) only had this episode in two seasons.
What Is MasterChef (US)?
Before MasterChef US, there was the BBC original cooking competition reality show from which the US version is adapted. MasterChef (US) was the first spin-off of the English version of the reality show and was adapted by Ben Adler, Robin Ashbrook, and Adeline Ramage Rooney.
The premise of the series is, “A nationwide search for the best home cooks in America. One of 50 hopefuls will become a culinary star and one of America’s ‘Masterchefs.’”
MasterChef US also marked Gordon Ramsay’s introduction to the franchise, and he went on to become the face of the US show with its premiere in 2010.
MasterChef: Seasons Where Those Eliminated Returned Revealed
MasterChef, to date, has a total of 11 seasons. During the 11-season run of the show, many aspects of the show have been amended and reworked.
One of these is the number of competing home cooks, which shifted from 18 to 16, then to the now established 20.
The number of episodes, along with other aspects of the show, have also since been changed in recent seasons.
Specifically, the special episode that featured eliminated contestants from the season returning to compete for a chance to earn their way back onto the show to compete for the title of the season’s MasterChef was let go.
Interestingly, the special episodes lasted only two seasons – season three and four. As a result, the only two contestants to be afforded the opportunity were the late Josh Marks and Bri Kozior.
For some reason, after season four, MasterChef (US) abandoned this practice unlike other spin-offs that have maintained the practice even with recent seasons.
MasterChef: Season three’s Josh Marks returns to compete
The first contestant to ever receive the opportunity to return following their elimination earlier in the season was Army Contract Specialist from Jackson, Mississippi, Josh Marks.
Marks was part of MasterChef season three and was eliminated during a steak cooking challenge. However, his elimination was short-lived, as he returned during the special fourteenth episode of the season.
Marks went on to become the runner up contestant of the season. It was possibly this performance that encouraged the producers to return the special episode during season four.
MasterChef: Season four’s Bri Kozior returns to compete
So far, Bri Kozior is the second and last contestant from MasterChef (US) who got the opportunity to compete for an opportunity to return to her season, in order to compete for the title.
Kozior was a theatre assistant from Doylestown, Pennsylvania, and was initially eliminated in season four, episode 16, titled Top 8 Compete.
She returned in episode 18, which was the episode where the season’s eliminated contestants competed. However, she would once again be eliminated during episode eight of season five, ranking her sixth.
Kozior now owns her own catering company and doubles as a business development manager at AmerisourceBergen.
What happened to Josh Marks?
One of the most heart-wrenching story updates for any of the contestants is that of MasterChef season three’s Josh Marks.
While on the show, Marks earned the fans’ favour after his return to competing after being initially eliminated. Marks made it right until the end as the runner up of his season.
Subsequently, however, his life seemingly took a turn for the worst. He was first involved in a car accident that resulted in his admission into a psychiatric ward.
Afterwards, he was diagnosed with bipolar and suffered from psychotic episodes. Marks was confirmed to have died in October 2013 after battling with severe mental illness.
MasterChef (US) has had multiple reiterations throughout its 11-season run. This is since the show has changed its number of episodes per season, and the number of home cooks that get to officially compete for the title of Masterchef.
However, one aspect of the show which has been changed and has not returned without explanation is the special episode which allowed the season’s eliminated contestants to return to competing officially for the title. In the US spin-off, there were two seasons of this special episode, namely, seasons three and four.