Shortly after CBC TV's The Great Canadian Baking Show launched on November 1, a review of the show has sparked concerns about homophobia.
A Canuck adaptation of The Great British Bake-Off, the TV show is cohosted by actors Julia Chan (Saving Hope) and Dan Levy (Schitt's Creek).
In the series, 10 amateur bakers compete in a series of challenges (three per episode), with one contender eliminated per episode.
The Globe and Mail's TV critic John Doyle wrote a dismissive review of the show on October 30, calling it "a literal, copycat iteration" and added that "there is a lot to mock in this overconceptualized, overly imitative show".
When it came to the judges, Vancouver's Four Seasons Hotel executive pastry chef Bruno Feldeisen and Quebec-born, Perth-based pastry chef Rochelle Adonis, Doyle was equally unimpressed.
"Neither is what anyone would call a natural in the reality-TV racket," Doyle wrote. "Both are a tad stiff and nervous and little wonder—at any moment, they know they might be swarmed by the feyness of Levy and the tweeness of Chan."
Doyle repeatedly used the term twee and tweeness, three times in reference to Chan as well as once for the original show. The term twee, primarily a derogatory British term, can mean excessively delicate, dainty, pretty, or precious.
While the repetition of the term may have been intended to be comedic, that usage, coupled with feyness, also potentially conveys disdain for femininity.
Definitions of fey include being affected, overly refined, effeminate, or campy.
Levy, who is openly gay, plays the pansexual son David Rose on the hit CBC TV comedy series Schitt's Creek. Levy created the series with his father Eugene Levy of SCTV and American Pie fame.
Levy took issue with Doyle's use of the term feyness.
Levy garnered support from numerous Canadians, including TV host George Stroumboulopoulos, Vancouver indie pop stars Tegan and Sara (who are openly gay), and Schitt's Creek costar and Dan's sister Sarah Levy.
Neither John Doyle nor the Globe and Mail have responded to the criticism yet.
Meanwhile, upcoming episodes of The Great Canadian Baking Show feature themes of bread (November 8), dessert (November 15), and Canada (November 22).More