At the risk of getting really ridiculous/repetitious here, it occurs to me I should go a third time into my thoughts on the Great British Baking Show to clarify any misconceptions… all of which are likely my own fault, as briefly as possible.
First: I don’t have any problems with Giuseppe Dell’Anno, the contestant who (SPOILERS!!!!!) won this year’s series. He is a very talented baker and some of works he produced were absolutely beautiful. I’ll have to take the two judge’s opinions about the taste of his bakes, as I do with all the other contestants, because until TV develops a taste feature, that’s all we gotta go by.
Second, going into the final episode of the series, Mr. Dell’Anno was the clear favorite if only because he was the most consistent of all the competitors left.
I don’t think this is a shocking statement. If you’ve watched the show from start to the finale, there were two contestants who were consistently great: Mr. Dell’Anno and Jurgen Krauss.
Mr. Krauss, of course, didn’t make it to the finale because he was eliminated in the semi-finals which, it’s fair to say, was a shocking result.
However, and Third, I felt if you watched that episode it was clear of the four contestants left, three -including Mr. Dell’Anno- seemed to be hitting home runs with their bakes while Jurgen was doing great… but not spectacular. So for me, as sad as it was that we didn’t get to see Mr. Dell’Anno and Krauss go head-to-head in the finale, It felt to me his elimination was fair.
And it was fair because the judges knew he had the weakest bake of that particular episode.
Which is the crux of my previous two posts: In that episode the judges appeared to act according to what I feel should be the proper way to judge such a show: Like in sporting events, you forget what’s happened before and focus on what’s happening now. Whoever “wins” the current episode moves on. Whoever comes in last does not.
Which is what didn’t seem to happen in the episode prior to the semi-final and which has, IMHO, occurred a few times before.
In the episode prior to the semi-final (quarter-final?), Mr. Dell’Anno appeared to have a very off week. In the technical round, if memory serves, he actually burned the bake!
Lizzie Acker, who was ultimately eliminated in the episode, on the other hand appeared to have a very good day. Her bakes, at least according to the judges, were consistent.
By all rights, she should have gone on and, in that episode, it felt to me Mr. Dell’Anno should not have.
Yet she was eliminated and he was allowed to continue.
Again: I can only guess the judges decided at that point to go by overall performance of the bakers in deciding who was to be eliminated versus who did well in that episode.
Way, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in 1985 the Chicago Bears were a formidable football team.
So good were they that many speculated they stood a great chance of equaling a record that, until that year, stood strong: That of the 1972 Miami Dolphins, who ended the season undefeated.
They tore through one opponent after another until week 13 of the season rolled around and the Bears played against -you guessed it- the Miami Dolphins.
Perhaps it was karma, perhaps it was the football Gods having a laugh at their expense, but the game rolled around and the Bears were destroyed.
They lost that game 38-24.
But they had the last laugh: They made it to the Superbowl and won quite convincingly 46-10 against the New England Patriots.
Here’s the thing: The Dolphins that year were a damn good football team as well.
In fact, once the playoffs rolled around, many in Miami salivated at the prospects of Dan Marino, Miami’s Quarterback, again going up against the Bears.
And everything looked like it would happen that way…
…that is, until the Dolphins lost to the New England Playoffs in the Conference Final game (the game before the SuperBowl) by a score of 31-14.
There were those who said Miami -pardon the pun- took their eyes off the ball. They were already looking to the next game, to confronting the Bears again in the SuperBowl, and didn’t take New England seriously.
They’re probably right.
But my beloved Dolphins lost nonetheless and because of that did not get to face off against the Bears again.
When Jurgen Krauss was eliminated in the semi-final episode of the Great British Bake off, it was a shock but the others really did seem to do better.
In the episode prior, Mr. Dell’Anno, to me, felt like he should have been the one eliminated but instead Lizzie Acker, the more inconsistent baker, was taken out and the only reason I could see for that happening was because the judges felt Mr. Dell’Anno deserved to continue due to his overall excellence versus Ms. Acker’s inconsistency.
It would have been as if the NFL decided that the New England/Dolphins game’s results didn’t matter and the Dolphins -who were a better overall team at 12-4 versus NE’s 11-5- were allowed to continue on to that SuperBowl against the Bears.
And that, folks, is what irritates me now and again about the show.
And (redux) having said all that, it doesn’t mean I’m going to stop watching it!