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Posts Tagged ‘Great British Bake Off’

Paul Hollywood’s Indian Summer

Summer Paul Hollywood


No topless photos of Paul Hollywood, 51, the TV baker leaving his wife of umpteen years. No photos of Paul in his undies, posing with a cheeky glance to camera as his taps his buttocks. And no revelations that he likes to hang homemade ring donuts on his manhood in the way the actor John Bindon used to hand five half-pint glasses on his penis.

Instead we get Paul telling us that years ago a fortuneteller told him he would be “very wealthy and very famous” (Daily Star), and two big photos of Summer Moneys Fulham, a 22-year-old barmaid (Daily Mail). In one, Summer does the splits on the bar of a Kent pub where she met the TV oven stuffer. In another she smiles in a low-cut top.

The Mail recalls Hollywood’s affair with Marcel Valladolid, his co-judge on the US version of the Great British Bake Off, telling readers that he called it “the biggest mistake of my life”.

On the Mirror’s front page, it’s “Bake Off Paul” and the “barmaid”. Hollywood ‘Splashes the dough” (geddit?) on “young barmaid Summer Monteys-Fulham”, now given a hyphen.

The message is clear: he is money and fame; she is seduction and regret. Love and sex are different for girls.

We read that Summer has “apparently quit her job”, deleted her social media profiles and moved out her parent’s “£1m home”.  Her life seems to have been changed since the Sun on Sunday broke news that she and Hollywood had become friends. “It has clearly upset her a lot,” says an unnamed source to the Mail.

So the single woman gets profiled and finds herself in the paper, the object of our heated debate and judgement. Wonder what the stars said lurked in store for her.

Posted: 27th, November 2017 | In: Celebrities, News, Tabloids, TV & Radio | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Great British Bake Off does the Teletubbies

Want to feel old? This is what the Teletubbies look like now.


Bake off Teletubbies


Spotter: Freeview

Posted: 14th, September 2017 | In: TV & Radio | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Murdoch united: The Sun says BBC ‘nabbing’ Great British Bake Off stars to ‘spite’ Love Productions

In a Sun “exclusive”, the paper says “BBC chiefs are facing claims they are sabotaging shows from the firm behind The Great British Bake Off.”


Sky balls Bake off


That company is Love Productions, who have brought to your telly such treats as Bake Off and: Junior Bake Off, Newlyweds, Famous Rich and Homeless, Tower Block of Commons, Young, Autistic & Stagestruck, The Baby Borrowers, Young Mums’ Mansion and Naked, Underage and Having Sex, and Britain’s Youngest Grannies.

Industry insiders say Love Productions believe the Beeb deliberately nabbed stars from other shows they have made.

Industry insiders say Love Productions believe the Beeb deliberately nabbed stars from other shows they have made. It’s an alleged “bid to sabotage the firm”. What stars have been “nabbed”?

Claudia Winkleman, who presented The Great British Sewing Bee and The Great Pottery Throwdown’s host Sara Cox.

Claudia, 45, is to co-host new BBC show Britain’s Best Cook, alongside former Bake Off judge Mary Berry, 82. While Sara, 42, is now presenting BBC2 series Back In Time For Tea.

Negotiations for new series of the sewing and pottery shows have now stalled.

Can we get a insider to go on the record?

A TV source said: “The sheer arrogance of it all is astonishing.”



“There’s a view in the industry that the BBC is acting out of spite and not in the best interest of the licence fee payer.”

What the story in the Sun (prop. Rupert Murdoch)  omits to mention is that in 2014, British Sky Broadcasting acquired a majority stake in Love Productions. News Corporation (prop. R. Murdoch) owns 39.1% of BSkyB. 21st Century Fox (pro R. Murdoch) has formally lodged its £11.7bn bid to take full control of Sky.





Posted: 18th, August 2017 | In: News, Tabloids, TV & Radio | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Nadiya Hussain: making a meal of the GBBO bitter chocolate mosque



Great British Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain has been turned into a mould for all Britishers to pour their prejudices into.

Remona Aly, The Guardian: “Nadiya Hussain has won so much more than the Great British Bake Off”

A modelling contract? A glass cake stand? A peerage?

Nadiya has managed to defuse the negative, politicised and stereotypical discourse surrounding Muslims in one beat of a whisk. Such is her resonance that even David Cameron – whose Tory party conference speech lists pet hates that can be construed as Muslim-related, including another dig at madrasas and his declaration that “this passive tolerance has turned us into a less integrated country” – backed her to win.

The elite who turn everything into a moral education for the masses. Cameron was mad for Brain Belo to win Big Brother. Show him a darker complexion on The Chase and Dave bangs the drum. “Go-gogo, Ali from Bury,” he yells. “Make Britain proud!”

While Nadiya is the most popular GBBO baker to date, with the charming anaesthetist Tamal Ray a close second, their combined appeal meant that this year’s finale was bound to break previous records… In addition to GBBO’s winning set-up of the brilliantly witty Mel and Sue, poker-faced Paul Hollywood and traditionalist Mary Berry…  its inclusivity factor has been reflected in the competitors, with Nadiya having the extra edge of being a non-stereotypical British winner – as an Asian Muslim woman in a hijab, she both represents and transcends all her identities.


Poor old Ian. The white bloke is the only person on camera not included in Remona’s tribute to inclusiveness.

White bloke Simon Kelner (Independent), says Nadiya Hussain “serves up the perfect rebuttal to Theresa May’s xenophobic rhetoric.”

No. She did not push the cake in May’s mush.

Julia Hartley-Brewer, Telegraph:

Nadiya does not represent Muslims, or British Muslims, or Asian women or even just women. She is simply an individual who represents no one but herself, in exactly the same way that if her fellow contestant Ian Cumming, a white middle-class man, had won the show, it wouldn’t have said anything meaningful about white middle-class men either.

Gaby Hinsliff, also Guardian:

How dare the BBC portray this cheery mix of ethnicities and sexualities and backgrounds inexplicably not at one another’s throats, and thus make it look as if multiculturalism might not be so bad after all? There was admittedly something a bit contrived about Hussain’s final showstopper, the wedding cake she’d apparently always wanted (they’re not traditional in Bangladesh, where she and her husband married). Even the dimmest viewer couldn’t miss the symbolism of an old-fashioned iced lemon drizzle accompanied by a red, white and blue sari.


Yasmin Alibhai-Brown:

Muslims who are burning with anger or, at the least, disillusioned with life in Britain should learn from Nadiya. I know I have.


Ally Ross, the Sun:

MILLIONS of nut-cakes tuned in to the Bake Off final last night not entirely sure who’d win — but utterly convinced they knew who wouldn’t. We had a Muslim mum of three, Nadiya, looking quietly determined. A gay Asian NHS worker, Tamal, looking stupidly relaxed. And a bloke called Ian, looking utterly screwed.

Turn up without a box tick to your name, some viewers reckon, and you can bake an exact replica of the Taj Mahal using shortbread fingers and meringue nests and it still won’t be enough to win this most PC of BBC shows.

The Bake Off monster has got so big, the show is no longer just a cake-making contest.

It’s full-scale ideological warfare and another chance to argue about political-correctness in the BBC. To have the stomach for that, you also need to give an unhealthy toss about Flora’s cocoa carousel or Alvin’s plum tart…



BBC execs no doubt did a multi-cultural jig of politically-correct joy — long before she sealed it with a patriotic red, white and blue wedding cake. Tearful, victorious Nadiya was the best contestant. She deserved to win.

I’m simply glad it’s over. Now we can enjoy the less PC delights of the new Apprentice line-up. That includes: Ah. A Kosovan refugee, a Nigerian businesswoman and a former intern for a Liberal Democrat MEP.


Amanda Platell writes in Mail:

Poor Flora wasn’t PC enough for Beeb

When this series of The Great British Bake Off began, the BBC was proud it was the most inclusive, multi-cultural line-up ever.

Did you notice?

Now we’re down to the final three, it’s certainly a PC triumph. We are left with Muslim mum Nadiya Hussain, gay doctor Tamal Ray, and New Man Ian Cumming. Poor Flora Shedden never stood a chance. She was far too middle class — and was booted off this week after her chocolate carousel was deemed sub-standard. Perhaps if she’d made a chocolate mosque, she’d have stood a better chance.

The judges are Paul Hollywood (white; non-Jewish male), Mary Berry (white; non-Hindu female), Sue Perkins (white; gay; non-Satanist) and Mel Giedroyc (white; non-Buddhist; not a former refugee reading Gender Studies at Sussex University). We could go through the crew, whose names appear at the show’s end. Or look harder at Platell (white; immigrant). Or we could wonder if a chocolate mosque answered the brief to create a “stunning and delicious 3D centrepiece made from chocolate and biscuit”. No word was made of the need to create a place of worship from chocolate. No contestant did.

That’s not to say that something controversial, like a chocolate version of the Human Centipede, a dole queue or Jeremy Clarkson’s fist would not have given the middle-of-the-road show an edge. A chocolate mosque sounds a little dull.

A few days later, Platell adds:

…while I’m thrilled for Nadiya, I do also fear for her now she and her family have been catapulted into the seductive, cynical world of celebrity.

Stewart Lee has also seen how the winner of the twee TV show is being packaged as moral lesson for us all. He writes:

It was on 3 October that the Daily Mail content provider Amanda Platell introduced the notion of a chocolate mosque into the collective subconscious. But still, more than a week later, Platell’s enormous chocolate mosque continues to loom over my imagination like an enormous chocolate mosque, an image so absurd that it becomes a viable metaphor for its own self.

In case the news-blip passed you by, Platell made minor chocolate ripples by suggesting in print that a middle-class woman called Flora Shedden, and her chocolate carousel, were booted off the BBC’s Bake Off cake contest in favour of Muslim mum Nadiya Hussain, gay doctor Tamal Ray and “new man” Ian Cumming, because she wasn’t “politically correct” enough. Perhaps, wrote Platell, “if she’d made a chocolate mosque she’d have stood a better chance”.

…An obvious subtext to Platell’s story is that the other contestants were favoured, irrespective of the quality of their cake work, because they fulfilled some kind of politically correct quota, such as “Muslim mum” and “gay doctor”. But the idea that this could be a deciding factor is undermined by the presence of the third victor, Ian Cumming, for whom the best denigrating epithet that the increasingly desperate Platell can find is “new man”, a phrase last used pejoratively by a woman wearing legwarmers in the early 1980s.

And here’s food for more opinion writers: will Nadiya make a cake for gay weddings? A source tells the Sun:

 “Since the final aired she has had a flood of requests from brides-to-be. A few she has already accepted and there is enough demand for her to consider making wedding cakes professionally. It’s something she could work on in her evenings. She is still a full-time mum, after all.”



First one to order a gay wedding cake wins.

Posted: 12th, October 2015 | In: Reviews, TV & Radio | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Half Baked: they’ve turned Bake Off winner Nadiya into a Muslim role model and given us the mould

Nadiya Jamir Hussain won the Great British Bake Off, a BBC TV show for competitive amateur cake makers. The BBC presents as news. But it’s even more than that. It’s a moral lesson. Nadiya wears a scarf on her head. It’s not new kind of apron or a teflon-coated chef’s hat. It’s a head scarf, as worn by some Muslim women, of which she is one.

The Mail sees the look:

Nadiya is already a heroine in her home town of Luton where she’s seen as a glowing role model for young Muslims at a time when the immigrant community is struggling to shake off the dark spectre of Islamic extremism.

Put down your bombs, your spliffs and your iPads. Pick up your lemons.

‘I was a bit nervous that perhaps people would look at me, a Muslim in a headscarf, and wonder if I could bake,’ she says. ‘But I hope that people have realised that I can — and just because I’m not a stereotypical British person, it doesn’t mean that I am not into bunting, cake and tea.’

Cake and spite. It’s he British staple diet. It’s won wars.

‘I’m just as British as anyone else, and I hope I have proved that.’

Who needs to find a token ethnic face for the BBC to pat on the head when Nadiya is so willing to place her cakes at the vanguard of Britishness.

Still, the Mail manages to up the stakes. Get a load of this utter balls:


Screen Shot 2015-10-10 at 18.39.38



More sugary balls, modom?


Screen Shot 2015-10-10 at 18.47.36


As a liberal Muslim woman myself, I admit that I was also initially put off by Nadiya’s headscarf and severe look.  Yet by winning the show with such grace, humour and dignity, Nadiya has done more to further the cause of Asian women — and men — than countless government policies, think-tanks, initiatives and councils put together have achieved in the past half-century.

It’s a Nadiya and me story.

Of course, we have many other Muslim role models — Mo Farah, Olympic gold medallist, Moeen Ali, the England cricketer, Mishal Hussain, presenter on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Rageh Omaar, TV reporter, Sajid Javid, the Business Secretary, and Baroness Sayeeda Warsi.

She’s not a role model. She’s a woman who entered an amateur TV cooking show who happens to Muslim. Islam played no part in her baking , or did we miss the bit where she makes a chocolate prayer mat? Are Muslims who enter other telly shows – Mastermind, Big Brother, Pointless – doing it for their God?

But it is Nadiya, baker of beautiful cakes, who has, in my view, turned the image of British Muslims upon its head.

Who knew they could work an oven?

Muslims who are burning with anger or, at the least, disillusioned with life in Britain should learn from Nadiya. I know I have.

Don’t burn with anger – turn down the temperature and simmer. And Yasmin, are your sponge fingers better than Before Nadiya (BN)?

And – hold on – is this a parody? Is that you, Craig Brown?

I once wrote about good Muslim men, among them some uncles and cousins who treasured their wives and encouraged them in their education and ambitions.
Afterwards Sadiq Khan, Labour candidate for the London Mayoral election, wrote and thanked me for my article.

Haha. Who knew Muslim women could do satire so well? Haha.

We all owe Nadiya a debt of gratitude, not just for entertaining us with her pastries and sponges, but for teaching us what it is to be British in 2015.

Rule, Nadiya… Nadiya rules the airwaves…

Posted: 10th, October 2015 | In: Key Posts, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0