I don’t watch that much TV (cuts into reading/writing time). I like HGTV, a few Food TV shows, have a weakness for Jeopardy, and sometimes catch the news. But the one show I will actually rearrange my schedule to watch is on once again.
I ADORE the Great British Baking Show. And after a brief (failed) attempt to mix it up with new judges and hosts, they’ve gone back to the original. Ahhh. Mary Berry, Paul Hollywood, Sue, and Mel.
Friday was a double header. And yes, I stayed up until 11 p.m. without dozing off. I don’t even do that on New Year’s Eve.
So what makes this show must-watch for me? It’s no single thing–the sum being greater than the parts–but I think the main thing is . . . it’s nice.
Sure, it’s a competition, but the competitors seem to support each other. Maybe even like each other. They’re just regular folks who all enjoy baking. And while Paul can be pretty direct in his critiques, he’s never mean or cruel. And Mary is usually right there saying something like, “the flavors are good,” or “the texture is lovely.”
So much of “reality TV” these days focuses on people behaving badly. It’s bachelors or bachelorettes pushing the relationship envelope as close to an R-rating as they can. It’s family’s airing their dirty laundry. It’s competitions where the goal is to undermine everyone else.
The Great British Baking Show feels supportive and friendly while also pushing amateur bakers to show what they can do. Of course, it also looks delicious. Towering cakes, cream fillings, fresh-baked breads, sweets, savories, scones! It’s dangerous to watch so late, when I know snacking is a bad idea.
Plus, everyone has a British accent. I mean, really, what’s not to love?