Cake Boss: The Next Great Baker

We’ve followed Buddy and his family around for a while now as they work to make crazy cakes for special occasions. We’ve seen fireworks and dragons, the leaning tower of piza and a fire station, the millenium falcon and pizza pies, and just about any other kind of cake you can imagine. This season, we got something new: a competition to find “the Next Great Baker.” Which really means that like in the Apprentice, this is a glorified search for someone to work at his bakery. The competition follows 10 bakers competing to prove who makes the best cake and design and the winner not only gets to work for Carlos but also wins $50,000 and a new car.

I’ll be honest. Having watched the show until now, the contestants don’t seem all that talented. Maybe they just aren’t being given enough time to do much, maybe they have specific strengths (which certainly does not seem to be decoration) that they aren’t getting much chance to showcase. Whatever it is, they mostly come off looking more inept than anything else. There might also be a nervousness factor here, not just because this is a competition but because Buddy can be kinda intimidating.

Despite their lack of talent, the show is still entertaining. With the misfires (special effects that didn’t go off) and cake demolition, we’ve been given surprises. The contestants themselves have the quirkiness of Christian Siriano and Jay of Project Runway and a mean streak worthy of the Jersey Shore.

Judges include members of the bakery and the clients they make cakes for. Somehow the contestants are always scared of the contestants as though Buddy’s sister who runs the orders is the authority on cakes. Yes, she works in a cake shop, but so do all the contestants. And she doesn’t even bake!

As the season draws to a close, and the frontrunners emerge, the show has been renewed for a second season. How many people can the bakery employ?

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