Great British Bake Off judges Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry may not have crowned him Star Baker yet – heck, he’s not even put out anything particularly memorable – but I’m stating the case for being on team Howard.
Yes, likeable Howard who can’t seem to catch a break with his bakes.
Amid the tears and tantrums of nearby Deborah (whose admission that she’d scream, cry and throw out a dodgy bake at home I can more than believe) Howard potters about like he’s quite forgotten why he’s inside a great big tent surrounded by baking equipment.
Last week, host Sue Perkins leant on one of his uncooked muffins and Howard merrily served it up, seemingly unfussed that the elbow shaped dent could see him out of the competition.
This week, Deborah stole Howard’s custard so he gamely plonked hers onto his caramel and apple trifle instead. And, even though the addition of corn flour made Deborah’s attempt undoubtedly inferior to Howard’s, he politely said, “I’m sure one custard is as good as another.”
We all secretly knew this wasn’t true, given that Howard was the only baker doing a true crème anglaise with just egg whites. Poor Mary Berry was really looking forward to it.
And frankly the "I forgot which bowl was his" excuse from Deborah was about as useful as Mr Hollywood telling the contestants mid-bake that it’s "not the way I would do it".
Even when Howard still had two types of caramel to make as well as his (soon to be Deborah’s) custard, he just hummed his way through the panic. When his poached meringues turned into a melting "metaphor for climate change", Howard just started again.
Perhaps Howard’s secretly been at Deborah’s Cointreau spray.
As he took in the feedback on his sloppy trifle layers, Howard simply sighed, “I’d just like to get one uneventful bake out of the way...”
The Great British Bake Off continues Tuesday at 8pm on BBC2