When it was announced that ‘The Great British Bake Off’ was moving from its home of seven years on the BBC to Channel 4, many fans of the show immediately made their feelings known.
Cries of ‘they’re going to ruin it’, ‘we don’t want ad breaks’ and plenty of other unrepeatable and, let’s be honest, seriously OTT stuff echoed across social media
In fact, some viewers were so peeved that they even declared they were going to boycott the show altogether.
Despite the dust settling and everyone calming down a bit, many fans were still convinced that their beloved show would never be the same again.
True, presenters Mel and Sue decided they wouldn’t be moving with the show, as did ‘Bake Off’ matriarch Mary Berry, and yes there will be ad breaks, but is Channel 4’s incarnation of ‘Bake Off’ really that different to the Beeb’s?
Here’s 9 reasons why the show is still (ahem) exceedingly good in its new home.
*Warning: There are a few (small) spoilers ahead.
1. They haven’t messed about with the format
Firstly, with the exception of the aforementioned changes, the format is EXACTLY the same. Soothing music? Tick. Iconic tent? Oh yes. Three challenges per episode? Present and correct. As are the contents of the tent, the sweeping camera angles, the gingham, THE TENSION. We promise you IT’S ALL THERE.
2. Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig are the double act we didn’t know we needed
No, they’re not Mel and Sue, but they are as brilliantly subversive, irreverent, naughty, warm and bloody hilarious as their predecessors, but with their own unique twist.
3. Prue Leith is a minx
Aside from having one of the best wardrobes (and accessory collections) on TV, Prue, just like Mary before her, has a twinkle in her eye but is, dare we say it, flirtier. In the first episode she tells 19-year-old contestant Liam: “I want to come to yours for breakfast.” “Anytime,” he responds. Paul Hollywood’s reaction is priceless.
4. The new series features the usual mix of talented contestants from all walks of life
Series eight features a former army officer, a stay-at-home mum, a bio-medical scientist, an IT manager, a health and safety inspector, an architect, a marketing executive, a student and a (lovely) granny from Liverpool.
5. Mary’s legendary jackets are back
Except Mary isn’t wearing them - Sandi Toksvig is. Let’s just say she really isn’t afraid of a colourful bold print.
6. Innuendo is in (not out)
Forget what you’ve read about the classic ‘Bake Off’ innuendos being dumped for a more “modern” approach. At one point Noel declares he’s “looking forward to a moist clutch”. Whilst, Prue announces “I don’t know what he’s doing but I want to stick my finger in it.” MATRON!
7. The ultimate feel-good show is still just that
Considering a preview of the first episode was aired in front of an audience of notoriously cynical hacks, there were many genuine laugh out loud moments. But as one contestant tells Sandi, “Joking can only get you so far”. “Oh thanks a lot,” she replies. That’s her told.
8. But that’s ok, because the standard is extraordinarily HIGH
Paul Hollywood has boldly claimed that this year’s bunch of amateur bakers are “the best yet”. Get ready for that famous Hollywood handshake, which comes out on more than one occasion in the first episode alone. And as for that watermelon cake. Genius.
9. But it doesn’t always go well
Episode one features not one, but two ‘bincidents’ and a lot of quivering lips and watery eyes. And hey, it wouldn’t be ’Bake Off without someone forgetting to turn the oven on.
‘The Great British Bake Off’ airs every Tuesday at 8pm on Channel 4.