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Series / Godiva's

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Ramir (Stephen Lobo) and Kate (Erin Karpluk)

Godiva's is a Canadian comedy-drama series that ran for two seasons (2005-2006). The title comes from the fictional Vancouver restaurant where the show is set.

This series provides examples of:

  • All Gays are Promiscuous: Played straight with Cordell, who Really Gets Around, but averted with Cordell's boyfriend, who wants a monogamous relationship.
  • Arranged Marriage: Ramir almost goes through with one to please his parents, but ultimately walks out of the ceremony, causing his father to disown him.
  • Bit Character: Jerome, who supplies many of the restaurant's ingredients.
  • Bittersweet Ending:
    • Kate successfully reinvents Godiva's as an innovative hot spot, but she's still forced to launder money for Howard and worries about her new boyfriend, a cop, finding out.
    • Ramir has achieved a great reputation as a chef and patched things up with his mother, but his father is still unwilling to forgive him.
    • Simone is free of her painkiller addiction, but she now has to worry where Chantal has gone.
    • Martin loses his virginity at last, but his new appetite for sex ruins his budding relationship with Jane.
    • Daisy gets rehired at Godiva's, but only after realizing how abusive her relationship with Sam has become.
    • Jenna and Stick are in a healthy relationship, but she sabotages it by cheating on him with her dance partner.
    • Victor has decided to pursue a new career as a line cook, even though this means giving up his hopes of becoming certified as a doctor in Canada.
    • T.J. launches a successful DJ act that he's ready to take on the road, but he has to run away with Chantal to do it.
  • Carrying a Cake: A problem in the episode "Out the Door" when Daisy realizes that no door in the restaurant will accommodate the enormous wedding cake she baked for Ramir's wedding.
  • Caustic Critic: Food critic Deanna Reisner slams Ramir's food early in the series, becoming The Dreaded when she returns to review his updated menu.
    Ramir: Okay, team! Burn through these orders, pronto. I want all hands free for Deanna. (to Cordell) Push the pork medallions.
    Cordell: No beef tenderloin this time? What was it she wrote again?
    Martin and Stick: "I've had breakups more tender."
  • Dancing Theme
  • Double-Meaning Title:
    • Episode 203, "Out the Door":
      • Ramir jilts Rajni at the altar.
      • Ramir expects to leave Godiva's to open his own restaurant after the wedding.
      • Daisy and Victor struggle to fit Daisy's wedding cake through the back door of the kitchen.
    • Episode 205, "Dead Flowers":
      • Daisy plants flowers behind the restaurant, then cuts all their heads off to bury Victor's dead patient in them.
      • This is the event that leads Daisy to seek comfort at Sam's meditation group, where the "spiritual garden" is a recurring theme.
    • Episode 208, "The Bigger Man":
      • Cordell discovers how well-endowed Stick is.
      • Ramir must be "the bigger man" and allow Stick to run the kitchen for a few hours.
    • Episode 212, "Inked":
      • T.J. and Chantal get airbrushed tattoos together.
      • Kate and Simone get revenge on Kate's rapist by tattooing the word RAPIST on his hand.
    • Episode 213, "Exit Strategies":
      • T.J. and Chantal run away to Seattle together.
      • Victor leaves dishwashing behind to become a line cook.
      • Cordell tries to help Daisy out of her abusive relationship with Sam.
  • Dress-Coded for Your Convenience: At work, all the kitchen staff wear chef's whites while the waitstaff wear black. Subverted in that we are not meant to side with one group over the other, as is typically the case with this trope; this is simply how they are expected to dress.
    • Averted with Kate and Simone, who as manager and bartender are allowed to wear whatever they like.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Cordell is the only member of the main cast whose arc wraps up in a wholly positive way: He's in a happy monogamous relationship with Drew, he's found a new talent as a sommelier, and he succeeds in helping Daisy break free of Sam.
  • Economy Cast: The restaurant, which appears to have a seating capacity over sixty, seems to employ only two servers and one or two bussers in total.
  • Ensemble Cast: There are ten main characters, and all of them get their own story arcs and lots of screen time. However, Kate and Ramir are a little bit more prominent due to their leadership roles.
  • Everybody Has Lots of Sex: There's usually at least one sex scene per episode.
  • Fauxlosophic Narration: The beginning and end of each episode featured either Kate or Ramir intoning something only vaguely related to the plot. Sometimes food-themed, as with Ramir's thoughts on the particular qualities of saffron.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Kate and Simone don't get along especially well at first: Simone isn't interested in having any close friendships with women, and Kate clumsily insults Simone more than once. They do team up several times for the sake of the restaurant, and they can usually crack a joke or two together. Only after they get revenge on Kate's rapist do they truly bond.
  • Food Porn: The show is full of lush descriptions and shots of the dishes being prepared.
  • Germanic Efficiency: Embodied by Mathilde Krause, a dance company director for whom Jenna auditions unsuccessfully.
  • Hookers and Blow: The original head chef of Godiva's dies of a cocaine overdose in the first episode.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Ramir's parents want him to marry Rajni, their friends' daughter. Ramir isn't interested, but when he meets her and finds her to be beautiful and smart, he starts to warm to the idea. He then finds out she is a lesbian. Interestingly, Rajni suggests that they get married anyway for their parents' sake — after all, they can just date whoever they want on the side. Ramir agrees, but later leaves her at the altar.
  • Intimidating Revenue Service: Garth tips off a friend at the Canada Revenue Agency to send an auditor after Godiva's. Though the auditor himself is a Reasonable Authority Figure, Kate is terrified that a stack of missing receipts is all that stands between her and a six-figure fine. She's right.
  • Product Placement:
    • Major Canadian brands highlighted in the show include Aritzia, Lavalife, and Westjet.
    • Ramir often compares his menu to that of upscale Vancouver restaurant West.
    • Kate mentions having worked at Canoe and Scaramouche, both extremely popular real-life Toronto restaurants.
    • Ramir appears on the City TV program City Cooks.
    • Food critic Deanna Reisner writes for the Georgia Straight followed by the Vancouver Sun.
    • The show mentions Canadian celebrity chef Rob Feenie several times.
  • Service Sector Stereotypes:
  • Shipper on Deck: Daisy and Martin are this for Cordell and Drew when they first begin dating.
  • Technician Versus Performer: Martin received formal culinary training and is extremely competent in the kitchen, but he lacks the untrained Ramir's bold ideas.
  • Techno Babble: A culinary version: Viewers will hear terms like "86" (to sell out of a menu item) and "four-top" (a table for four).
  • Villainous Gentrification: A major plotline in season 2 has Kate fending off property developer Garth Rutledge, who seeks to buy the block where Godiva's is located and turn it into a condo complex. Her warnings of Community-Threatening Construction to the block's other business owners fall on deaf ears, as all of them have accepted Garth's buyouts; even Godiva herself is willing to entertain his offer. Kate eventually prevails by making Godiva's profitable again, which renders Garth's plans impossible since he needed the entire block.
  • Welcome Episode: The first episode is this for Kate.
  • You Get What You Pay For: Ramir is determined to feature high-end ingredients like wild boar, ostrich, and sea bream on the menu, costs (and customer appeal) be damned. He finally learns that Godiva's cannot afford these items when Kate tells him that his ingredient bills make it impossible for her to give him a raise. She insists that he cook "good, cheap food that people want to eat," which results in even fewer customers coming in. The two eventually strike a balance by rebranding the restaurant as a destination for local food.