Bob’s Burgers Recap: Black Garlic

Photo: FOX
Bob’s Burgers
Episode Title
Best Burger
Editor’s Rating

The Story
After drinking lots of wine and mustering up some liquid courage one night, Bob signs up for a gourmet burger competition (the First Annual Best Burger Contest!!!). At the Wharf It Down Food Festival, Bob goes head-to-head against Jimmy Pesto and Skip Marooch. Tragedy strikes when Bob realizes he forgot his secret weapon at home: black garlic. As the contest clock ticks down to zero, Bob and Linda send the kids to retrieve garlic as they deal with emcee Chuck Charles (of Beefsquatch and Family Fracas fame), who won’t stop harassing them.  

The Highlights
To kick off the contest, the family cheered for Bob, each in their own special way:

Linda: Win, win, win! Cook, cook, cook!

Gene: Dad, big smile! Big energy! That’s it, doll.

Louise: Hey, you’re sweatin’ too much already, buddy. Pace yourself.

Tina: Go, Mom and Dad! I mean, stay there and cook. Don’t go anywhere. Sorry if I’m being confusing.

[+1 point to everybody for support; +1 extra point to Tina for her careful clarification.]

It was gold any time Chuck and contestant Skip Marooch interacted. Their first interaction set the tone for the whole episode — equal parts creepy and cute, a balance this show has perfected over the course of five seasons.

Chuck: Skip Marooch! Am I saying that, right?

Skip: Yes … Skip.

Chuck: Great, so you’re from Pakistan, you’ve got a successful restaurant, you’re on a book tour. God, what can’t you do?

Skip: Complain? Everything is going so well!

[+1 to both for uncanny chemistry.]

Louise nailed a double entendre in the flashback exposition scene:

[+1 to Louise for keeping her parents in line; +1 to Linda for even turning a burp into a song.]

Every time Chuck was onscreen, he stole the spotlight with his machine-gun tongue and acerbic sarcasm. He was especially relentless with Bob “the Slob” Belcher, thanks to the history the two share.

Bob: It’s made with black garlic. It’s fermented garlic; it comes from Korea.

Chuck: Don’t blame Korea for your stupid burger, Bob. Not fair to them, or burgers.

Jimmy Pesto was there with his bromantic sidekick, Trev. Trev brought subtle hilarity.

Jimmy: After I win this contest today, we’re also going to be known for our Oregano Burger.

Chuck: All right! And what’s in that?

Jimmy: Just a ton of oregano!

Trev: The big O!

Jimmy: Don’t say "big O."

Trev: All right, I won’t say anything then, ever.

[+2 to Trev for trying to be funny, taking a beating, and then serving up a good response.]

Gene ruled this scene:

[+1 to Gene.]

Gene and his siblings proved that they truly are the most uncoordinated family in the history of animated television. Never throw your keys at them.

[+1 to everybody involved.]

We learned in this episode that Mickey now drives a pedicab, a fantastic development in the Bob’s Burgers universe. He has a rival named Manny, who has Arnold Schwarzenegger legs. Tina describes them better. 

Tina: Wow, it looks like a bunch of snakes inside a leather armchair.

[+1 to Tina for vivid accuracy.]

Back home, Gene tries to prove he can save the day, but he’s pretty Gene about the whole thing.

Bob: Oh my God, Gene. Put Tina on the phone.

Gene: She’s pretty big; it’d be easier to put the phone on Tina.

[Puts phone on Tina’s head, she talks to him briefly.]

Tina: … Dad hung up on me, but it’s okay because I know he loves me.

[+1 to Gene for his literal high jinks; +1 point to Tina for staying grounded.]

There was more virtuosic Bob abuse from Chuck:

Chuck: Let’s check in on Bob because we kind of have to. Lots of chopping. His bald spot is getting bigger and shinier, hair probably falling out all over his food. What a disgusting creature!

[+1 to Chuck.]

Tina unleashed a handful of gems at a high-end food store called Figjam because she’s Tina and the stakes were high:

[+2 to Tina and her wisdom.]

The kids ran into Ron, sans Hugo, who was hitching a ride on Mickey’s pedicab. His reason for doing so was the stuff of Ron legend.

Ron: I was going to the library. Taking a pedicab there is my weekly splurge.

While aboard the pedicab and in the middle of a tense cab-chase, Gene realizes (with the help of Louise and Tina) that he has become synonymous with disaster.

Gene: I’m a verb! I’m a bad verb!

Tina: You’re a berb.

[+1 to Gene for growing in life; +1 to Tina for helping.]

The chase leads back to the wharf, where Mickey comes close to mauling over a crowd of people, as well as slamming into a miniature train-tour.

[+1 for Tina for that terrifying but obviously inspiring voice; +1 to Mickey for his adroit pedicabbing.]

Gene tries to channel, as he has in the past, the spirit of a higher power to successfully deliver the black garlic and not be distracted by the rest of the Wharf It Down Food Festival.

[+1 to Gene.]

When Gene finally delivers his dad the black garlic, Bob tries to be Rocky at the end of the episode. Linda wants him to yell like this.

[+1 to Bob for trying.]

Jimmy: Come on, Trev.

Trev: Fwah.

Jimmy: Hey, I’m sorry I was so hard on you. Things got a little heated, and not just because of your heat lamp.

Trev: Ah, you said "hard"!

[+2 to Trev for being immature and for making whatever great noise that was.]

One of the judges looks like a homeless Sean Connery and says arguably the weirdest, but best, line of the night. “This has exquisite mouthfeel!”

Just kidding. Skip, ultimately the contest winner, has the best line at the end, referring to Bob’s second-place black-garlic burger: “I smelt it and now I want you to dealt it … into my mouth.”

[+1 to Skip for being weird.]


In an episode that should’ve been Gene’s, it came down to Tina and Chuck. Chuck reigned supreme whenever he was onscreen, but Tina dished out too many stellar Tina-isms not to be crowned MVP.

Bob’s Bonus Sliders

  • Mickey and Manny have a beautiful bromance in the making.
  • I’m glad Chuck is doing well for himself, even if it is as a master of ceremonies (“Skip Marooch, handsomest chef. What about me? Great emcee. Gonna go have a plate of shrimp, a 20-ounce beer, and a massage from my friend, Hank the Masseuse.”)
  • This show needs way more Trev.
    I hope Ron was finally able to turn in that overdue library book.
  • Honorable mention: “I’ll cut through the crowd like a fart through butter” —Louise.
  • Linda was the best wife ever in this episode. Delusional, but still the best wife ever.