HOLLYWOOD—This was a genius concept for the Food Network. I will admit I hate food reality competition series. There is just way too much of this on the network that was a staple for me growing up learning how to cook and be creative in the kitchen. We don’t have the cooking shows that we used to have all day on Saturdays and Sundays. Hell, you used to have repeat of cooks teaching one-on-one instruction during the week, but now it is just “Chopped” and so much more competition-driven shows.

This new series “24 in 24” sees the return of Iron Chef Michael Symon, who is hosting, alongside Esther Choi in this new adrenaline race involving 24 chefs competing for a total of 24 hours. Yes, it is NON-STOP for this extended period, which has a total of eight various skills that will be tested in three-hour intervals or shifts as the show highlights. Each shift will test a unique skill and the first thing tested was speed that witnessed the chefs cutting up onions, artichokes and avocados.

I enjoyed this concept, but beyond that it was a race to get to a protein you wanted to cook for your next challenge. So, there were 12 stations, and two chefs would be at each station, but only one would remain. Yes, with the snap of a finger 12 chefs were about to be eliminated from the competition, and right there, the series completely lost me.

How can you have a series about 24 chefs, and you get rid of half of them within the first hour of the two-hour premiere. I just found that as a cheap gimmick and it didn’t really deliver for me. For starters, a lot of the chefs on the series not many viewers, unless you’re engrained in the culinary arena, will you know. I think I knew Elizabeth Faulkner, Carlos Anthony, Marcel Vigneron and Viet Pham. Faulkner and Vigneron I know from their time on “Top Chef” and “The Next Iron Chef.” Anthony was a competitor on recent seasons of “Tournament of Champions” and Pham I recall from “Iron Chef America” battling Iron Chef Bobby Flay.

I didn’t love this twist, because it really doesn’t give the audience an opportunity to know the contestants. Like a 30 to 45 second take highlighting a few things about the chef doesn’t paint a good enough picture for me. It just doesn’t. That was not my only issue, it was the fact that we had a single chef judging the dishes from the two competitors at each station.

That was Chef Jet Tila, who recently competed on “TOC.” Here is the problem, there needs to be blind tasting for culinary competitions. You cannot do this, when you have judges who could have potential connections to chefs there can be bias, and that is the one thing I enjoyed about “TOC” it provides an equal playing field as the judges are tasting food unaware of who made what. That did not happen here and like I said 12 chefs were out, one being Faulkner which stunned me.

Then you have the next competition of this three-hour challenge, crafting your best egg dish in only 12 minutes. Yes, I’m glad they used eggs as the vehicle and 12 minutes is NOT a lot of time to craft a unique and tasty dish involving eggs. I mean, what if you are not a fan of eggs? At the end of this interval, it witnessed another chef getting the boot from the competition.

Then you have a battle after that challenge between the losing chefs where one is booted. The concept is quite intriguing, but there needs to be fixes. I was expecting 24 episodes, but the reality is that was near impossible as that is too many episodes, but slowly eliminating the 24 chefs would have been better than seeing half chopped with a snap of a finger.

I wanted to see more from this series that is doing something you don’t see often in a reality cooking competition, however, there are still some tweaks that are needed. “24 in 24: Last Chef Standing” airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on Food Network.