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Why Netflix’s ‘Baking Impossible’ Team Wants You to Try – and Fail – to ‘Bakineer’ at Home

Host Justin Willman and judge Andrew Smyth tell TheWrap how exactly judging works for the baking-engineering hybrid competition series

Netflix’s new competition series “Baking Impossible” is a show that just screams, “Please try this at home!” And the team behind the show really, truly wants you to attempt their baking-engineering hybrid challenges yourself — knowing full well you’re not going to be good at it. Well, at least not on your first, second or maybe even third try.

“One of my biggest hopes from the show is that it encourages people to kind of be curious and get creative, both in the kitchen and elsewhere,” judge Andrew Smyth, who conceived the idea for “Baking Impossible” after competing on “The Great British Baking Show” in 2016, told TheWrap. “I think people are going to see things that have never been done before and kind of make artistic and scientific connections that they haven’t seen elsewhere. So I hope that we can help people to create miniature versions at home. I had the idea of doing the miniature edible boat at home, and that’s something I would love to see more of and bring Bakineering into people’s kitchens.”

Host Justin Willman added: “I mean, people are going to be digging in their junk drawer in their kitchen after this to say, what could I take apart? What could be a windmill? What could be a propeller? There are takeaways, like, tangible DIY ways to, immediately after watching an episode, try to make something in your kitchen. And it will probably be a disaster, which is what will help you realize how hard it is, what the people on the show are doing.”

“Baking Impossible,” which launches Wednesday on Netflix, is described as a competition “that pairs the most creative and innovative bakers with the best and brightest engineers to make creations that are beyond our wildest imaginations – the kicker is, it’s their first time working together! Every episode, teams of Bakineers (1 baker + 1 engineer) will compete in designing and baking creations that are required to not only taste delicious, but also survive intense engineering stress tests.”

So what does that include in the show’s first season? Well, as Smyth mentioned, there’s that edible boat that floats, along with edible mini golf courses, an edible skyscraper that must withstand a simulated quake and a few other bonkers Bakineer creations.

Smyth, who judges “Baking Impossible” along with Dr. Hakeem Oluseyi and Joanne Chang, also explained how the actual judging works on a show that is about taste, design and functionality all at once.

“We want stuff that looks great, tastes great, but the key thing is in each mission we’ve got this engineering stress test,” he said. “So this is kind of what differentiates the show, is it’s got to do something amazing. It’s not just there to look at. Quite often it means we end up destroying it. Other times it means getting used in a way. So one of my favorite episodes that we recorded was you had to make kind of a mini skyscraper on an earthquake-shaking table. And it was the stuff of dreams, like, seeing things crumble and we get to eat the delicious debris at the end, by pushing things to their absolute limit. So it was tricky to kind of strike the balance. But we’re looking for all-arounders. We’re not looking for stuff that looks great or stuff that just performs but doesn’t look spectacular. We want the whole thing. And there’s two of them, so they’ve got double the brain parts to bring to the problem.”

“Baking Impossible” Season 1 is streaming now on Netflix.

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