The Weekly Bake Off: Annual Appraisal

Eliza Frost /
Sep 6, 2017 / Film & TV

In this episode of The Weekly Bake Off, we’re looking at each of the (almost entirely) new set judges and presenters on Channel 4’s new version of the show. Do they make a recipe for a sweet treat? Or should they go in the bin, like Stacey’s mini roll sponge last week?

The second week of GBBO is always one of the most important – it’s when you get a real taste of who they all are as people, judges and  presenters; whether they’re jokes are sub-par or super good. Do you like them already? Will they grow on you? Can you still not come to terms with the horror that Mary Bae-rry isn’t there anymore? If you squint at your TV when the four of them are on the screen, it’s almost like you’re looking at the old lineup. But it’s not them. It’s. Just. Not. (Note to self: let it go.) Anyway, onwards.

If Paul Hollywood was a cake, he would be like an unset, slimey key lime pie. He’s a bit sour but thinks he’s sweet – and I bet he often has a soggy bottom. I think Paul reckons he’s a bit of a ladies man, when in fact he’s probably more of the creepy uncle type, prowling a distant relative’s wedding. He definitely shouldn’t be hitting with you because he’s married to your aunt, yet he finds a way anyhow. In the Channel 4 GBBO universe, he hasn’t changed too much (so far) in the way he judges: he’s still a tough cookie. But, he has brought more innuendos to the Bake Off tent, and a few more laughs. Maybe this is him coming out of his shell? Who knows, all I do know is I’d prefer if this creepy uncle would stop trying to flirt.

Meanwhile, Prue Leith is like a victoria sponge, only with a twist or some weird, whacky colours. Judging by her colourful ensembles, she enjoys packing a punch. So if she were a cake, she’d either have a super-alcoholic jam sandwiched between the sponges, covered in a florescent yellow or cobalt blue butter cream. Normal doesn’t cut it for this judge. She’s still not like our true Viccy and one true queen, Mary B – and sometimes, don’t you think, it’s best not to mess with a classic? I mean, why change it up? Or maybe I’m the one still not coming round to Prue replacing Bae-rry. (Additional note to self: Seriously, build a bridge and get over it. She isn’t coming back.)

And that brings us to Sandi Toksvig, who’s probably a coffee and walnut three-tier cake, or, some sort of multilayer pastry filled with nuts – I get a nutty vibe with her. The cake and bake related puns her and fellow presenter Noel are bordering on cringey; yet sort of cringey where you’re not sure if it really comes naturally to them. They’re as awkward saying the jokes as we are watching them. There’s nothing to complain about with Sandi, but there’s also nothing to rave about either. She’s a gem, who occasionally provides you with a giggle, but most of the time it’s plain sailing.

Last but not by all means not least, we’ve got Noel Fielding. Ah, Noel. I think it’s pretty safe to say, he was one of the only things that got us excited about GBBO’s move to Channel 4. He’s weird. He’s wonderful. He’s probably saved the show. If our beauty was a cake, he’d be a devil’s chocolate food cake, with extra dark chocolate ganache poured over its entirety –  it’ll probably have like a surprise confetti canon hidden in the middle, that bursts silver stars when you cut into it, because, you know, it’s Noel Fielding. As a presenter, he’s obviously loveable. But again, can people come to terms with him making self-raising flour related jokes? Or, “If there’s an opportunity for exposed bottoms we should embrace it”. Just feels a bit out of place coming from the mouth of Old Gregg, don’t cha think?

Anyone else really want to eat some cake now?

Words by Eliza Frost

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