‘The Great British Bake Off’ is a national treasure, and has been since its birth on the BBC with everyone’s favourite, Mary Berry. However, since the show has transferred over to Channel 4, viewers have become divided about what the show has become. ‘Bake Off’ used to be an endearing, feel good show, which made viewers root for the variety of personalities that were brought together by their love of baking. Many viewers now suspect that contestants are kept on based on their TV personability, rather than their culinary skill. This conspiracy theory was born with the newest series, which has seen older contestants, who used to be adored by audiences, slowly be eliminated to leave only the younger cast members behind.
Another complaint about the show is the shift that has been seen in the challenges that participants are set. When the BBC were running things, challenges were created from the tried and tested recipes of the professional judges but have now become niche and irrelevant. ‘Bake Off’ used to encourage viewers to get involved at home, but this desire has disappeared as the challenges have increased in difficulty and aren’t engaging anymore. For example, one random theme has been the recent 1920s week, which immediately lost my interest. I would rather watch the same challenges be tackled each year, than have topics which were pulled from thin air for the sake of diversity.
One thing that has been maintained since the shift to Channel 4 is the show’s capability to draw the loveliest hosts. Sue and Mel had our hearts, and now Sandi and Noel have stolen them from us again. I’m sure that I’ll continue to keep up with ‘Bake Off’ in coming years, but it will be a much more casual relationship. Once unmissable and British TV gold, it has now faded into background noise.