The Great British Bake Off sees ten passionate home bakers take part in a bake-off to test every aspect of their baking skills as they battle to be crowned the Great British Bake Off's best amateur baker. Each week the nationwide tour sees keen bakers put through three challenges in a particular discipline.
Take everything you love about U.S. food/cooking shows, remove everything you hate, add a dash of Himalayan pink salt, and you've got this perfectly prepared British vittle. The impossibly named Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry both kinda look like they'd be annoying judges, but they're delightful. Even the hosts are winning. It's remarkable.
I like the setup of this British reality show, it's better the intentionally-misleading-just-for-ratings setup that most American reality shows follow. Also, this reality show is filmed on the weekend, so contestants can still work or go to school. They have foreknowledge about two of the baking challenges so they can practice during the week and prepare any templates. With that disclaimer out of the way, this is a great show to watch if you bake, want to learn to bake (I'm in this category), or desserts and breads fascinate you. The hosts are funny, the judges are hard to read, and most of the contestants are genuine, non-fame-seeking individuals. This is not a show that you have to start with Season 1 and move forward, the format is simple: Round 1=Signature Bakes; Round 2=Technical Challenge; Round 3=Showstopper Challenge; Round 4=1 Contestant Eliminated based on how well they did across all three challenges. As a result of this easily understood format, it’s okay that PBS started with Season 5. But, here’s a piece of advice as someone who has watched Seasons 3-5: the episode before the winner is announced is a recap of the previous season and discusses what those home bakers are up to a year later. This is only a problem if you plan on watching the other seasons (which I highly recommend) and don't want any spoilers. What I do is skip that episode and save it until I watch the season featuring those contestants. Lastly, the episodes after the winner is announced are where Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry (real names of the judges) show how the contestants should've baked the challenges to be successful.
Such a warm and uplifting show about baking, with genuine contestants who just want to bake rather than be famous (such a welcome change!) There's challenges, skills tests, humour, food history and palatable tension in each episode - a very polished and highly successful format that shows the contestants off in a postive and likeable way.
Each challenge on the show is unique and offers a chance for contestants to show their skills as well as develop and expand on new ones. The hosts are great and pack as many puns as they can into each episode, in an inherantly British way. The judges are very knowledgeable and very fair on the contestants too (I suppose eating baked goods all day puts you in a sunny dispasition). Summertime in Britian isn't the same without this show, fingers crossed it remains the same when it goes over the Channel 4.
I love the Great British Bake Off, and I am so glad that channel 4 kept the same format and timings. I loved Sue and Mel, they were hilarious and I was dubious about new hosts but Noel and Sandi are amazing and it is shocking that two people that appear to be polar opposites can bounce off each other to brilliantly. I think that Prue had a hard act to follow but that she has done a great job. I am looking forward to the next series.
If you love baking then this is the show for you! It's quintessentially British in every way, has a national treasure in the form of Mary Berry and show cases what can be achieved by average every day people who have a passion for baking