The Sandwich King Is Not Especially Informative about Sandwiches or Royalty

Each week we take a quick, cautious look at what's going on with televised cooking. This week: Sandwich King, a half-hour show about the Black Plague, Sundays at 11 a.m. on the Food Network.

Jeff Mauro, former stand-up comic, is the Sandwich King, but how he ascended to nobility I know not. I fear he may have been christened under a false god, because, you know, my fucking uncle is the Sandwich King every time he has four beers. I'm the Sandwich King whenever I buy ham. Being a Sandwich King is like being a Cereal King or Salad King. There's not much of a kingdom there. Verily, it's a fucking sandwich.

Still, I acknowledge his reign and sit down for the premiere of Sandwich King, season number two (the first season slipped quietly by last summer, veiled by an invisibility cloak). His sovereignty begins with tomato soup. He's making us wait for the sandwich. I'm impressed. That's how you rule the sandwich kingdom, by not making sandwiches. I really can't wait for that sandwich!

Earlier in the show his majesty went to a restaurant to watch someone else make a sandwich, and before he went in he did a little pop-and-lock move on the street corner — my liege lord is a thirty-something white guy who, it's clear by now, failed as a stand-up. I've was sort of mulling this over while he made this tomato soup, so when the bread finally came out it took me a while to determine just what his lordship was doing.

But then I understood all to well. The first sandwich the Sandwich King made on premiere of The Sandwich King was a grilled-cheese sandwich — for the prince.


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