Not having much of a life, I have to confess, I sometimes let TV shows get to me.
Programmes such as ‘The Jeremy Kyle Show’, ‘Deal or No Deal’ and ‘The Only Way is Essex’ pretty much scream ‘Hate me’ as they are utterly intolerable so naturally, I wouldn’t even watch them if I had ‘Clockwork Orange’ style eye clamps on.
Other shows I once enjoyed, such as ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ and ‘Big Brother’ used to be entertaining, but went off like a Stilton in January, so I stopped watching them with nary a backward glance.
What really pissed me off though was when my favourite Light Ent TV programme, my cosy, innocent, sweet, warm, hot chocolate with marshmallow, cashmere throw of a show turned out to be as rigged as the X Factor, to the extent that I was almost incandescent with rage.
Hence after watching the latest episode, I wasted a good hour of my life ranting on Facebook and Twitter (which I hardly ever go on) about how displeased I was with the Beeb and the judges and how much I loathed them all. Well I didn’t say that. But I might as well have.
Why, you might ask, did I waste my time and energy getting all fired up about a bloody TV Show?
Well the Brits amongst you might get it as I’m talking about, ‘The Great British Bake Off’ of course, the crux of the matter being that one of the contestants is blatantly being championed and saved week after week, despite being the rank outsider, because she is beautiful.
One of the judges, the heinous Paul Hollywood, clearly fancies her and flirts and flatters her despite being old enough to be her dad, and she, the little minx, knowing that cooking is not her strongest suite, plays him like a fiddle in order to stay in the competition.
The most infuriating part though is that the other judge, grande dame of the back in the day baking, Mary Berry, also plays along which reveals the even more disgusting underlying motivation which is that the good old BBC want to keep her in so that they can groom her to be the next Nigella or Lorraine Pascale. The fact that she can’t bake for shit has no bearing on the situation to them; sexy sells and they are determined to milk this fey, pouty, eyelash fluttering little cash cow for all she is worth.
The fact that she is good looking isn’t what bothers me. Hell, I’ve worked in marketing and for companies like the BBC for years so I’m not naive to this end. I like both Nigella and Lorraine and own books by both of them but they earned their position by being established foodies and cooks before they came to fame, not as a happy result of their pulchritude.
Nor do I have a problem with Aunty hot housing her to baking stardom after the show ends.
But this is a BAKING COMPETITION not ‘This Year’s Top Model’ and it is not fair to boot out more talented, worthy contestants just because Ruby would look better on the cover of a BBC hardback book next Spring, (lying in a field of bluebells, swathed in linen and staring ethereally into the distance no doubt) and it is clear for all to see that this is exactly what is happening, and last night for me, and the rest of the viewing public, was the very last straw.
I, like the majority of the viewers thought she should have gone last week, but whilst watching last night’s episode, it was blatantly clear that Ms Tandoh was totally out of her depth as she bombed in all three rounds. Hell, she couldn’t even make a frigging swiss roll, for her Charlotte Royal and I mastered that at school when I was 11! As for her resulting CR, it looked like an absolute dog’s dinner as it sat on the judging bench, covered in thick, spunky goo, glistening sinisterly like something out of ‘Aliens’.
How a Charlotte Royale should look:
Even the judges gave her a bit of a roasting this week which rather amusingly made her drop the faux self deprecating coquette act and turn into a pouting, stroppy six year old, demonstrating that disapproval is something she rarely ever has to encounter, and left me in no doubt that this pretty little kitty had finally used up the last of her nine lives.
So, when it came to announcing who would have to leave, she wept profusely knowing her time was up, and then lo and behold, they announced that lovely, talented, seasoned baker Becca was getting the chop instead.
WTF? I was so shocked, I practically sprayed my Merlot all over the cats, then when the realisation hit that she had gotten away with it AGAIN, I went on my furious social media rampage.
Seriously though, it’s only a TV show so why did this upset me so?
Well something that really resonates with me on a deep, emotional level is unfairness. Of course I’m not stupid, I know that supernaturally good looking people have a distinct advantage over us mere potato headed mortals, but this competition is so blatantly rigged in Ruby’s favour that it totally outrages me. This is the BBC for goodness sake, good old reliable ‘Auntie’ with her safe, trustworthy, all that’s good about Britain brand values, so you don’t expect them to sneakily and cynically use ‘the taste’ of Ruby’s dubious offerings as an reason to keep her in, knowing full well that the viewing public can’t have an opinion on that so are not able to prove otherwise.
As far as I’m concerned, the message that the BBC are sending out to the British public is:
‘Apply to be on our show if you’re a good baker and you too might find fame, fortune and an invitation to the Radio Times Annual Awards one day! Unless of course you’re a minger and even if you’re not, you may well get pipped to the by a lessor competitor if they are prettier and more marketable than you. But hey, that’s showbiz!’
The other sore point for me is when beautiful people with no or little talent and zero personality have everything go their way. They’ve usually been adored from the second they shot out of their mother’s lala, have enviable upbringings, adoring siblings, loving partners and nary a cloud appears in their sky. Doors open for them, trousers drop, lucrative job contracts flutter to their door mats as if by magic. They automatically get upgraded from cattle to first class, secure the best tables in restaurants, taxis stop for them, snotty maitre d’s smile at them, little bluebirds circle their heads and trill sweetly in their ears.
And as a bit of an ugg, that really pisses me off.
Do all beautiful women annoy me? I can honestly say no. I live in London and see gorgeous women around town all the time, and some of my closest friends are stunners. Sure I’d like to look like them. But I don’t and that, as they say, is another story.
So what is it about Ruby Tandoh that really winds me up, apart from her whining, faux self deprecation, sulking when she doesn’t get her way and blatant manipulation of the judges? 😉
It’s her bloody self entitlement and gargantuan self confidence that has carried and will continue to carry her through her charmed, uber happy life and get her everything she does and more to the point, doesn’t deserve, and that is what I bothers me about her.
And the more I think about it there are women that I feel similarly about such as Amanda Holden, Louise Redknapp, Samantha Brick, Sally Bercow and Holly Willoughby who aren’t even that perfect looks wise. They just think they are and manage to convince everyone around them that they are too.
Because even when I had something to be confident about, I wasn’t.
No one ever loved me the way that they’ve been loved.
No one ever told me I was wonderful so I was never going to believe it of myself and my life has been scarred because of it.
And life has never, ever been as easy for me in the way that it’s been (in my angry little head anyway) for them.
And I suppose I’m angry because I’m resentful and envious because they have the sheer bloody confidence and audacity to think they are better than they actually are.
How very dare they be confident and happy with themselves? They’re not all that!
And this is probably what I tell and have told myself subliminally for decades.
I envy their self love.
But it’s down to me to do that for myself and maybe if I concentrate on that rather than slagging off some young baker who is probably quaking in her boots because of the media backlash against her, I won’t have to be jealous of her anymore.
Seems to be the key to everything doesn’t it?
Ah, Ruby, Ruby, Ruby, Ruby….
I forgive you for being so luminous, seductive and downright lucky in your life and hope that by saying this to you, I will be throwing healing waters on the incessant fire of Anger that rages within me.
This offer however will be immediately retracted if you win the show. Even God would have something to say about that! 😉
P.S. Just for the record I have not and do not intend to troll or say anything to Ruby directly. I’m not a bully, she’s not a bad person and I don’t advocate or support anyone who does attack people via Twitter unnecessarily.