The Great British Bake Off has been a massive success since its introduction in 2010, millions of Brits tune in to watch members of the general public fight their way to be crowned king or queen of baking prowess in this X-factor style cakeathon.
Even I was once a fan, but after 6 years of smarminess and unfunny innuendos, I now would suffer the consequences of eating all that raw uncooked cake mix than watch another episode. I hate the Great British Bake Off…In case you hadn’t got the drift by now.
Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s ace that people are so passionate and opinionated about baking, but it gets a bit much when you have a lynch mob of armchair caketivists baying after someones blood because they accidentally ruined a bearded mans baked Alaska. I have respect for Mary Berry and Paul – tantastic and somewhat arrogant – Hollywood, as they both have made a career out of something I can only dream of, but the show itself just bores and annoys me to tears in equal measures. The melodramatic oven-staring by contestants, the parading of Paul and Mary around each person asking what they are doing; with Paul asking what sort of pastry they are using only to react with a – I know better – response of ‘that’s an interesting combination’ are all screen fodder before the end result. Paul will inevitably over criticise every pie, pastry, or cake, or give a patronising appraisal response of ‘well you did amazingly well, it is baked to perfection and the flavours are excellent’ meanwhile his face tells you – yet again – ‘but I can still do better’.
In fact, more than this, the show encourages the contestants to derive their self-esteem from Paul and Mary. If the food is deemed good they are in ecstasy, if not, they are inconsolable. What an unhealthy attitude to teach added to unhealthy food. They don’t even win anything. They should at least get a voucher for Millie’s cookies or something.
The show is the TV equivalent of a Women’s Institute day out, with Richard Curtis directing proceedings, where everything is perfect and clean and sunny and just so annoying. I just don’t see the cult attraction of watching a bunch of people – who clearly have too much time on their hands – gathering in the English countryside to compete in baking cakes that no-one eats.
Mel and Sue, who once added a welcomed dash of humour, have become tiresome and repetitive. Their raised eyebrows and cheesy innuendos are boring, whilst sniggering over Mary Berry’s jugs – of water, naturally – and talking about slapping contestants’ baps is not even mildly amusing.
But it isn’t just the programme I can’t stand, it’s the hype.
The Great British Bake Off is plastic life on TV, a homogenized cack off of vintage cookware, rose petal aprons and belittled contestants. I have had people tell me I should go on the show as if it would be the defining moment in my life, as if going on the GBBO would open so many doors for me. Sorry but I would much rather be on television for being myself, not because I was a contestant on a cooking show.
The Great British Bake Off is the most oxymoronic show ever. It is simultaneously the most numbingly tedious yet inexplicably universally loved TV show in existence. My lack of ability to engage in it lend me to complete cultural isolation, but I’d say this is a fair (hot) cross (bun) to bear.
When it’s not on, you can bet either the dancing torture of Strictly Come Dancing or the diva-ranting, sob-story-guilt-tripping X Factor will be.
I think it’s time I demand my licence fee back.