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We've been rolled back to 1952 in the Great British Nod Off


Mary Berry

Mary Berry

Mary Berry

It's back! New tent and new channel! Apparently.

Even with the odd ethnic, gay and bearded man in the Bake-off running, it always feels like 1952 on The Great British Bake Off (BBC1). Maybe it's Mary Berry's Fanny Craddock on the wagon vibe or the garish Brit-bunting that bedecks every awning, beam and lovingly vaselined shot of cake-porn.

Perhaps it's the dismal "cherry-O ... oven-fresh bakers" style gags of alleged comedy purveyors Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins.

But, really, I think it's the painfully forced jollity of the thing.

The perky, Ealing comedy-style strings that seem to accompany every minor baking mishap.

That and Swiss roll.

Who said Swiss rolls were still a thing? "Swiss rolls was the treat at home when I was a girl," said 100-year-old contestant and Women's Institute stalwart Diana, failing to mention she'd enjoyed it whilst listening to Mr Churchill announce the outbreak of war on the crystal set.

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The thing about Swiss roll is this: no matter how much aniseed or honey you decide to cram into it, it's still just a Swiss roll.

A metaphor, perhaps, for this hugely overrated and archly reactionary TV show.

But then again, maybe it's just a rubbish Swiss roll.

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