Channel 4 accused of 'spoiling' Great British Bake Off as fans blast Alison Hammond debut: 'Zero chemistry'

Alison Hammond and Noel Fielding

Alison Hammond made her Bake Off debut on Tuesday evening

Alex Davies

By Alex Davies

Published: 27/09/2023

- 09:47

This Morning's Alison Hammond has taken over from Matt Lucas in the Bake Off tent

Channel 4 has come under fire from a number of disgruntled viewers following the opening episode of the latest Great British Bake Off.

Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood were back in their role of judges while presenter Noel Fielding was joined by a new co-host in the form of Alison Hammond.

The first episode of the new series kicked off in a rather bizarre fashion as the quartet took part in a Godfather-inspired sketch to introduce Hammond to the fray.

The 12 amateur bakers were then put to the test in the show's famous tent as they faced the first signature, technical, and showstopper challenges of the series.

As the episode drew to a close, it was baker Amos who was sent home as the first eliminated contestant, resulting in a tearful farewell.

However, it wasn't the result of the judges' vote which appears to have irked viewers but rather several other elements of the show - including the introduction of Hammond.

Noel Fielding and Alison Hammond

Noel Fielding and Alison Hammond pose with judges Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood behind the scenes


Moments into the episode, viewers were split over the new-look Bake Off, with one fan fuming on Twitter: "#BakeOff I just can't watch Alison Hammond. Awful."

While a second weighed in: "I've never missed an episode of #GBBO, but tonight I will have to record it and watch it later, so I can skip all the bits with Alison, @BritishBakeOff spoilt a good show."

"As a proud cake gal, I love the #GBBO but Alison Hammond has ruined it for me, can’t stand her," a third added while a fourth hit out: "Zero chemistry between Alison and Noel #GBBO."

However, the criticism didn't stop there as many blasted Channel 4 for the format of the show itself, with one fan ranting: "I can see @Channel4 are STILL putting TOO many adverts in #GBBO oh how I miss the days when you were on the BBC…"

WATCH HERE: Hammond's debut GBBO sketch

Hammond did have plenty of vocal supporters amid the backlash, however, including Carol Vorderman who tweeted: "Our Alison Hammond on #GBBO is Perfect....genius choice Channel 4. Congratulations....a wonderful team of bakers too....see you soon."

A second echoed Vorderman's point as they argued: "Alison and Noel are the perfect duo. I thought that it would never happen when Sandi Toksvig left but it's like Alison's been doing #GBBO since series 1!"

And a third also threw their support behind the This Morning presenter: "Alison Hammond has been a revelation. Bakers really top notch. Big shout out for inclusion using a BSL signer. Absolutely loving the new series! #GBBO."

The series had already come under fire prior to its latest series after Channel 4 bosses made the decision to axe national-themed weeks.

A producer said to The Guardian in the months before the premiere: "We didn’t want to offend anyone but the world has changed and the joke fell flat. We’re not doing any national themes this year."

The show boss was referring to the backlash the show received last series when Lucas and Fielding donned sombreros and armed themselves with maracas during "Mexican Week".

Alison Hammond and Noel Fielding

Alison Hammond and Noel Fielding are this year's Bake Off presenters


Channel 4's decision to ditch national-themed weeks was met with criticism from a number of fans, including TV chef Antony Worrall Thompson.

The chef accused the show of going "woke", telling GB News' Dan Wootton: "It's complete nonsense. I mean, as William Shakespeare would say, it’s much ado about nothing.

"I can't believe the small minority who don't like these programmes don't have an on-off button on their televisions, and they can't just turn it off.

"The majority of people enjoy the programme. It's a light-hearted show. They like to have a bit of fun."

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