Did Mary Berry just serve the new Bake Off a tiny slice of shade?

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Amy Swales
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Former judge Mary Berry has had her say on the new, notably Berry-less version of The Great British Bake Off, and we’re not altogether sure she didn’t throw the tiniest bit of icing-dusted shade its way.

Fans have been pleased to report that the much-loved show’s move to Channel 4 from the BBC has been relatively painless thus far.

OK, it’s only just started, but minor baking-related controversies concerning Hollywood handshakes and unusual chocolate rolls aside, the new line-up has gone down alright – the first showing pulled in the channel’s highest viewing figures since 2012.

Now Berry has handed down a verdict on the C4 series, which sees Mel and Sue replaced by Noel Fielding and Sandi Toksvig, and Prue Leith stepping into Berry’s formidable shoes/floral bomber jackets – and she says it is “going to be brilliant”.

However, someone pickier than we may point out that she said “going to be” brilliant, not “is” brilliant (not that we’d ever dream of furiously stirring the multicoloured mixing bowl ourselves, of course).

Speaking to, Berry went on to say that it’s only natural the GBBO contestants have “upped their game” after so many series (hence the ridiculously impressive showstoppers in the very first show) but when pressed further on whether she agreed with Steven Carter-Bailey being named Star Baker in the first episode, she was a little… reticent.

“Oh, I wasn’t concentrating that hard. Thank you,” she told HuffPo.

Was that… was that shade?

It could be that Berry is savvy to fans seizing on her every comment (we’re not known for being a shy and retiring bunch when it comes to Star Baker opinions) and has chosen to remain above the fray, or that she has no real interest in the goings on of her previous employer. Or it could simply be that she’s far too busy whipping up her own incredible creations to pay attention to who’s been named what, which is fair enough.

Despite some reservations over the new line-up and a slightly disturbing trailer involving vomiting eclairs, the C4 show has had a good reception overall, with more than six million tuning in.

And with peppermint in chocolate mini rolls causing a veritable online storm, and the doling out of not one, but two Hollywood handshakes, we’re already very much looking forward to what the rest of the series has to offer, with or without Berry’s feedback.

But we can’t be alone in thinking that some live Berry commentary would go down a treat every Tuesday evening.

Images: Channel 4 / Rex Features


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Amy Swales

Amy Swales is a freelance writer who likes to eat, drink and talk about her dog. She will continue to plunder her own life and the lives of her loved ones for material in the name of comedy, catharsis and getting pictures of her dog on the internet.