‘I watched Great British Bake Off for the first time and honestly don’t get the hype’ – John James

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Channel 4’s Great British Bake Off has returned to our screens in what is presumably a massive win for people who are in to that sort of thing.

Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas are all back to judge and present the topical baking show for a special 2021 Christmas edition.

As you might have guessed, the show is not something I’m overly familiar with.

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Paul Hollywood in the tent

Whether it’s my age (24), my relationship status (hopelessly single) or my life situation (hopelessly difficult) , I’ve never seen myself as the right demographic for the show and subsequently never taken the time to watch it.

But ahead of the last series earlier this year, I decided to change that and so I sat down with a glass of cheap coke and a ginger nut to watch the entire confection.

I severely wish I’d just spent that time watching paint dry (as I’m prone to do on most Tuesday’s).

Series 12 (twelve series!!) kicked off as usual in the tent and we were introduced to all the nice wholesome bakers, which is a problem in itself if like me you find wholesome people incredibly tedious to watch.



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They were tasked with making cakes this week (apparently it changes every time) and a few of them ballsed it up which was OK I suppose.

Noel and Matt made a few good-ish jokes and I genuinely find the way Paul Hollywood holds himself on the show hilarious.

In that one small tent in that one English field he is God, and he knows it.

But despite this, I really couldn’t get into the vibe of the show and found the whole thing started to drag.

The problem which I found persistently irked (and careful readers will note I have already made reference to it) is that the whole show is just unbearably, insufferably nice for niceness’ sake.

Everyone’s cheerful when they’re baking, Noel and Matt dance about with no real presence and even Prue and Paul have no fear factor.



Tom got the chop

At the end when Tom completely ruined his pretentious anti-gravity cake he should have been dragged over the coals and sent home in disgrace, as he surely would have by Gordon Ramsay or Marco Pierre White.

The other contestants should have jeered and thrown their own cakes at him and he should have been made to crawl out of the tent covered in cream and his own tears.

Now that would be entertaining.

But was he? Of course he wasn’t, in fact save for a disapproving look from Paul he got off scot free and was allowed to leave the tent with more dignity than his wretched cake had earned him.

For this reason, I don’t think the Great British Bake Off is for me.

If you like you’re cooking shows to be safe and cuddly, you’ll enjoy it, but I’ll stick to repeats of Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares – a proper show made with spite.

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