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  1. Like many, I will miss Benjamina's sunny personality and her laughing with Selasi. Andrew and Jane are a little self contained, so it has been hard to warm to them, although they have focus. The edits have made Andrew wallow in self pity and Jane come over as smug and competitive, but I think they are both deserving of their places. Her not very 3d marchpane design was painstakingly authentic so I can see why it would have been difficult for Mary and Paul to criticize, as they were shackled to their tudor theme and my favorite food historian, Ruth Goodman, has leapt to her defense as well. A
  2. At the sharp end of the competition with the weaker bakers out anyone could have a bad weekend and be asked to leave - I find that much more compelling as I'm now invested in these people. I realize there has been a swell of social media sentiment portraying Jane as some sinister presence, but I thought her showstopper showed so much skill I admire those how can calmly dig their way out of trouble and focus on day 2 - Nancy and Nadiya spring to mind. I did think uh-oh when she said she had made lots of roulades - memories of Val's bakewell tart hubris! This made me think the editors had decid
  3. Danny Baker is the kind of easy going comic that suits the after show - he doesn't try too hard and is witty. The woman in the middle had clearly come to eat cake, which is a plus in my book, and the ginger chef showed you can be red and sexy, cough Andrew. My favorite was ribbing rock climbin' Tom for fougasse being his go to 'cinema snack'. I find it hilarious that he is essentially a UK version of an ivy league hipster.
  4. I'm not sure about Tom being given a pass (although he is stubborn about his strange flavor combos to the point of ridicule), to my mind Andrew has been protected- at least Rav tried sugarcraft beyond fondant balls. I can't get angry about star bakers in the later weeks because botanics was a perfect example of who the ..... are we going to choose when no-one had a good week in ALL three areas. I know. I thought, lady, what are you doing? The piping looked good to me and then went from that to looking hideous. I felt so sorry for Jane who I suspect has done beautiful chocol
  5. No surprise that Hollywood took the money, but then again the man has been bankrupt. I can't understand why he is being attacked. Love Productions owned the format and sold it - any cooking show that the fantastic four got together on would need to be so different to avoid a lawsuit that the premise of a rebel bake off would have been ridiculous. As Athena says, GBBO has been his golden ticket. No more loading a bread truck at 4 in the morning, no more fleeing his debts on a mediterranean island. He gets the money whether it's a success or not. The Beeb will happily let Mary do any lit
  6. I had to laugh at Benjamina and Selasi throwing shade on Bakewell Tarts, which Benjamina clearly thought were best left on some retirement home menu. I've come to the conclusion that Val did worse when she thought she knew how to do something. I'll miss her gleaming eyes and little sayings, but she was a nice woman who was used to doing things her way, like a lot of retired elementary school principals I suspect, and that inflexibility cost her dear. This show has seen older contestants do amazing things so I think it was more to do with personality than age. Speaking of the stubb
  7. Claudia is a-mazing, cokehead or not. She's so not predictable, and reminds me so much of all the quirky clever Jewish girls in college I loved to listen to in full argument - they were so cultured and anarchic and I was so suburban - Claudia even dresses the same - black black and more black. I also like how she cultivates a broad audience - she almost makes that dancing show watchable, almost. She can switch between New Yorker style literary jokes to belly laughs in seconds. Maybe that's more common in the UK, but it's unusual and enjoyable, at least to me.
  8. I'm not a great fan of Josh, mainly because I disliked his frat house trash talking last year. I generally try not to indulge cultural stereotyping as it's usually untrue so forgive me, but I can't help thinking there's a gulf between Jude's NZ Pacific background and the sort of updated british classics the judges seem to fall over themselves for. When he tries to update British flavors they don't like the imposition of tropical fruits or Eastern spices. I'm pleased (from google) he seems to be adored in his adopted County Cornwall but I'm convinced his style of cooking would find much greate
  9. Heavens to Betsy, you guys are a tough crowd. Paul has lousy pronunciation of everything -even in English. I sort of enjoy it. He reminds me of Ringo from the Beatles, those Irish flat Dublin/Liverpool vowels. Would you suggest a suitably spanish punishment, like a cheesewire garrote? I was really happy that Benjamina was star baker and we saw her little dance - and Andrew being a sore loser/frenemy was funny - like he had stepped out of Mean Girls. Selasi reaching across for her knee was adorable. The Yorkies/Popovers were great to watch as my Irish side of the family make them some
  10. Rats. I wanted GBBO to remain commercial free. Love Productions was majority bought by the Murdoch dynasty in 2014 so of course they were going to maximize profits.
  11. I generally like bread week, Paul is more irritatingly superior than ever but the girls roast him to the point of parody. I couldn't believe all the issues with signature timings - I think after 6 seasons the bakers would know that 'fat' stuffed braids, plaits, babkas, couronnes almost never finish in the time permitted. It was interesting that the 'mom' bakers were felled like corn - decades of 'it's done when it's done' clearly isn't helpful - although what I like about the bake off is that bang, next challenge Val's experiences of dumpling after dumpling made her keep the lid on! J
  12. I think worries over hosts, judges and airline schedules are distractions over the real elephant in the room. TV production values. It goes right back to what ABay said about drama in the first post. Even low key PBS has over the top trailers for PBSBakingShow that are a complete 180 from BBC trails. GBBO emphasizes community over drama, and while the real UK may have problems every bit as profound or worse than the real USA, GBBO is comfort TV that can reach for feels without story arcs or gimmicks because it showcases generosity in people. I think viewers are gasping for it. You only
  13. Adam reminded me a little of the tennis player Andy Murray in looks and temperament - he's clearly talented and ultra competitive but I was interested in the Highland Wagyu beef. I too was glad Michael won and that all the judges loved his fish dish. Pru continues to 'save' the judges for me - she actually has a sense of humor - 'it's a blackberry' (big deal). The Irish guy is so permanently appalled by everything I get frustrated. I am confused about the regional element, as it seems that many Scots were irritated that 2 England-based chefs are representing them this year. Perhaps demo
  14. Louise had that lovely celtic/welsh warmth that Beca had, so I was sad, but I did think it was fair, as Val's 'Planet of the Apes' New York as some witty tweets called it, had a lot more design than badly iced panels. Paul's priest of gingerbread act was getting old super fast - German gingerbread can be soft or hard and they invented Witch-house gingerbread masonry - Paul wanted hard british style ginger biscuit base, with that touch of heat, and that's not really most types of Lebkuchen. I know Sue has her legion of fans, but I didn't miss her at all. Mel's quite the innuendo gli
  15. LMAO at that major shade. To be fair, GBBO started as a cheap little traveling show on the second bbc channel, made by a company that specialized in cosy daytime reality shows. Neither Mary or Paul were superstars when hired. The first season was more about home baking than ritzy patisserie - so a family business baker with a little exotic hotel experience, and a former home ec teacher famous for selling books with idiot-proof instructions must have seemed like a good mix. I do agree that Hollywood re-modelling himself as a patissier probably has colleagues at the various hotels he worked at
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