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Old 02-02-2017, 02:02 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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Face Off Season 11: All Stars

Hey you guys, are we still watching Face Off?

This is Season 11, they are calling it Face Off All Stars. The details of the format are slightly different -- the contestants are all from previous seasons, and they are in teams of two that will remain the same throughout the competition. My understanding is that eliminations will now happen every other episode.

Here are the teams:
Ben and Evan (both season 9)
Cig and George (both season 7)
Gage (season 1) and Rachael (season 7)
Keaghlan (season 7) and Melissa (season 10)
Logan and Adam (both season 8)
Niko and Cat (both season 6)
Tyler (season 6) and Emily (season 8)
Jasmine (season 9) and Stella (season 7)

In the first episode, Abstract Aliens, the challenge was to create aliens based on sea creatures for use with a green screen. My biggest take-away is that nearly all the models did what is apparently the universal sign of being a sea creature -- a floaty arm wave.

Top Looks:

Gage & Rachael do a skeleton shrimp. This was solid. I thought it managed to look very shrimp-like even while being worn by a person. They also seemed to really get how to plan in a way that maximizes the purpose of the green screen.

Keaghlan & Melissa have something called a flying grenard, and their design looks great, it's really floaty, and they use lights behind the eyes and the judges note that this is a perfect use of that concept. Overall this just looks so cool. This is the winner, they will have immunity next week.

Safe:

Cig & George have a batfish. They went for more of a goofy alien -- it's wearing a twee little suit. I liked the concept, but I'm not sure it worked 100% for me.

Niko & Cat do a vampire squid. The most successful part to me is that it has a flappy skirt thing that really looks like the webbing or whatever you call that part of a squid. I thought it was weird that it clearly had a muscled chest, but no arms.

Tyler & Emily have a deep sea dragon fish. I liked how it had a lot of head spikes and spindly arms, although I wish they had gone farther with making the overall anatomy look less like a person.

Logan & Adam have an octopus. I really liked the head -- they incorporated a great octopus beak shape. I wish the body looked more like an octopus, it wasn't really coming together as a whole concept.

Bottom Looks:

Ben & Evan make a Japanese spider crab ... and it's all over the place. It's like an enormous set of legs, but they don't work as part of an overall design of anything. I think the weakness of their team is demonstrated here -- I always felt like Ben would get too caught up in one element of a design without keeping his eye on the big picture, and I always thought Evan did better when he had someone who was giving him good, specific feedback, and I don't think Ben is that type of person.

Jasmine & Stella did a jellyfish. The main problem, as noticed repeatedly by the judges, is that they didn't think through the green screen so the jelly arms or tentacles are overlapping in weird ways. Aesthetics-wise, I didn't absolutely hate it, but I can't argue it misses the main point of the challenge.

In the second episode, The Devil is in the Details, the teams have to create a character that is showing both an angel and a devil. They are supposed to use traits of their own for the angelic and the demonic personas. That second piece seemed a little weak to me -- it seemed like the contestants ended up with some random good qualities and bad qualities and not all of them made sense as angels and devils (it was more like Virtues and Sins). The challenge is given to the contestants in a beautiful church with a lot of stained glass, and several of the teams incorporated that into their designs.

Top Looks:

Niko & Cat: Let me say now, in episode two, that they are a cute couple and seem really nice, but I am already done with hearing how their design elements are based on some aspect of their relationship. They do a Loyalty (angel) and Jealousy (devil) combo. It's a great beauty make up on one side, with a very decayed looking demon on the other side. My favorite part is that it isn't a line down the middle -- they paid attention to make it look like the decay was creeping over in a natural way. It also has truly mammoth wings -- there was something about the scale that didn't quite work for me, but they were very detailed and looked good. They deserve this win. (They were safe last week.)

Tyler & Emily: I loved this. Their design is very architectural, but in a way that doesn't overwhelm the character. I really liked how the figure doesn't look like a traditional white feathery angel, but is still very ethereal-looking. The demon side is supposed to look like metal that is corroding, and it absolutely does. (They were safe last week.)

Ben & Evan: They created a head and arm of a demon that wrap around the model. The head in particular is very convincing, both in how nicely done it is, and the way it blends into the model's actual head. The design is asymmetrical, but it still feels in balance (in past seasons the judges have dinged people for asymmetrical designs that look out of whack). Solid job. (They were in bottom looks last week, so this felt redeeming for them.)

Safe:

Cig & George: They had an angel that was chiseling herself out of a stone demon (I think). This looked reasonably good to me, and also called back to the architecture of the church, the location where they received the challenge. In keeping with the architecture theme, they gave her a stained glass halo, which I thought was an excellent idea ... except they also had some parts hanging off of it that made it look like a Native American headdress. The judges were very focused on this. I didn't think it was as much of a deal-breaker as the judges. (They were safe last week.)

Keaghlan & Melissa: They did a metallic-looking angel that was being covered by a "devil" that was a bodysuit made up of a lot of eyes. My description sounds terrible, but I thought this was actually good. I liked that they went in a very modern direction, even though the different colors of the eyes was a great callback to the stained glass in the church. I liked the combo of the halo and the horns morphed into a single piece. (They won last week.)

Gage & Rachael: I really liked their idea, which is a demon who is wearing the skin of an angel. Their execution suffered a bit. The head worked out okay, but they also wanted to show an exposed backbone made up of grabbing hands (their devil is supposed to be "greed") but the final outcome was hard to figure out visually. (They were in top looks last week.)

Bottom Looks:

Logan & Adam: The thing I liked about their concept is that they were starting with a warrior-type guardian angel, which I thought was fairly unique in this challenge. It went downhill from there. The devil was supposed to be "lust" (again, I think people were confusing this with seven deadly sins) and there was a hand grabbing his face, which was okay, and then a face and another hand coming out of his midsection. The judges pointed out that the placement of the face didn't work at all, it didn't make any sense. It's true -- it looked like maybe the angel ate the devil by accident. (They were safe last week.)

Jasmine & Stella: They bickered so much from the onset that I was ready to send them home based on that. They had a very difficult time arriving at a concept, and even got started working before they completely figured out a plan -- which we have seen before is almost always a mistake on this show. The results reflect that neither of them had a clear idea of what they were aiming for. They called it the head of a devil and the heart of an angel, but they always seemed far behind everyone else in terms of progress and the work they put out for the judges was absolutely minimal. I was also alarmed to see that they put their model in weird stuffed pants. They were in bottom looks for the second time, so it was clear cut that they would go home.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:28 PM
Noelq Noelq is offline
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Yep! I've enjoyed both episodes so far, and the quality is just amazing. The editors are doing a fantastic job of showing how very-early-on mistakes in conception or in the partners not getting the concepts really lead to the team's downfall.

I really wish Tyler & Emily had found a way to incorporate the traditional angel/devil roles into their makeup. It was truly gorgeous, and I liked it better than the winner.. but the winner did follow the rules more closely.
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Old 02-09-2017, 07:43 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Face Off Season 11

Sorry I'm slow. Since a new season is up, a new thread is due.

This season, in their neverending quest to keep it original and interesting, they have opted to compete with teams of two competitors from previous seasons, that they call "All-Stars". They keep the same teams through the whole season, and are eliminated as a team. That means week one is an immunity round, and week two is an elimination round, with subsequent weeks alternating.

Cast of Characters:

Team TroeTron: George Troester & Cig Neutron, season 7

Tyler & Emily, season 6 & season 8

Ben & Evan, season 9

Team Love: Niko & Cat, season 6

Logan & Adam, season 8

Team Werewolf: Keaghlan & Melissa, season 7 and season 10

Jasmine & Stella, season 9 & season 7

Team Rage: Gage & Rachael, season 1 and season 7


Spotlight Challenge, Immunity Week: use a sea creature from the deep ocean as an inspiration for an alien character - they need to be unlike anything seen before on the show, so the challenge will integrate green screen technology into the make up. They can digitally remove any part of their model as they desire.

Tyler & Emily, Deep Sea Dragon Fish - In order to break up the human form, they opt to use green side panels to make the waist impossibly small. They also create some thin, bony arms with a gap in the forearm, and attach that over the real arms, which are greened out. By putting the arms on top, they use the models arms directly to control them but mask them out effectively. The rest of the alien looks pretty good. One minor quibble - the fabric on the sides doesn't lie smooth, so the wrinkles create shadows which show up when looking at it from slightly off angle. Safe.

Ben & Evan, Japanese Spider Crab - This is a disaster. They make a torso with two huge legs arcing out of the top like a crab, but only two, and a third appendage off the bottom of the torso, with the model's legs blanked out. The fabrication is shoddy, the color scheme garish, the paint job wacky, and bizarrely the head is a completely different color scheme from the rest of it. It literally looks like vomit. Ve says the head looks like a Mexican wrestler. Bad choices all around. Bottom Look.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Flying Gernard - Taking loose inspiration from their creature, they make a composite creature that is lots of pieces telepathically interacting. They achieve the look by painting gaps along the arms and through the torso. They end up with something with a very dramatic use of the greenscreen. The head is also original. Perhaps a little misproportioned, and I'm not thrilled with the color scheme, but really hit the green screen use. But the judges love the paint job for patterning and graphic design. Top Look.

Cig & George, Roughback Batfish - Another disaster. They remove the model's legs and opt for two thin legs supporting a large body - completely disproportionate. This thing defies description. It looks like a red taco filled with cream cheese on the lower half and a big dollop of old guacamole on top. (I realize I just refuted myself.) Safe.

Jasmine & Stella, Helmet Jellyfish - They also make the legs disappear, and they wrap the body in clear plastic that is melted by a heat gun into lots of wavy shapes. The head is a deep orange and very much looks like a head and neck with nothing else connected. Around the head is a hood made of soft material that has no form and no apparent purpose. The tentacles are thin and floppy, suspended from strings on the model's arms, so as the model waves her arms around, they block out parts of the body and tentacles. Fail. Fail, fail, fail. Bottom Look.

Gage & Rachael, Skeleton Shrimp - This one is a fairly direct translation of the shrimp, complete with claws and tail. However, the use of green screen is awesome. They also painted out parts of the body and tail to make it very thin with gaps in the body. They also do something cool with the claws, making them out of clear plastic, but including a rope through the middle to suggest blood vessels and nerves. I love it. Top Look.

Logan & Adam, Veined Octopus - They also opt to remove the legs, making their alien a body in a hovercraft with two arms that split at the elbows into four arms. Neville likes the idea, but thinks the execution looks incomplete. The sculpt is unusual and alien, but the color is orangish. Safe.

Niko & Cat, Vampire Squid - This is another mess. They also hide the legs and arms. Their body and head look like a giant pile of pizza, with two big glowing purple eyes. They do have a fairly creative squid skirt that looks pretty good in design. Safe.

Winner for immunity next week: Keaghlan & Melissa.

No elimination this week.

McKenzie's outfit: pretty shimmery green dress

I'll get to weeks two and three later.
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Old 02-09-2017, 09:00 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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There was an earlier thread -- you might want to combine them.
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Old 02-11-2017, 10:58 AM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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I searched and couldn't find one.
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Old 02-11-2017, 10:43 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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Here. But upon looking at it, it wasn't much of a thread. I thought it was longer.


Anyway -- week three was Monster High. The assignment was to take some obnoxiously cute large-eyed Bratz clones from Mattel and turn them into characters for a live action Monster High show. In my mind, this was a very difficult challenge because the dolls rely heavily on the "enormous eyes == cute" gimmick from anime. And several of the dolls didn't really have much in the way of distinguishing features. Also, because the challenge was Mattel dolls, I found I didn't have a lot of interest in the challenge and I suspect that some of the contestant's spontaneous enthusiasm was a bit forced.

The gimmick this week (as usual, this season of Face Off is "nothing like any previous season" which means that it's pretty much exactly like every previous season with the occasional curve ball) was that instead of the normal judges, they got a focus group composed of grown up people who were willing to admit on live TV that they are fanatical Monster High doll collectors, not that I'm judging... For a group of amateurs, I thought they did a reasonable job, although I'm sure there were technical details that slipped by them. They did, I think, pick the best adaptation -- the fish girl, which, interestingly enough, was probably the makeup that departed most from the actual dolls.

Unfortunately, I can't remember the team members offhand, but, as usual, a lot was decided just by the choice of creature. The team that got the abominable snowgirl made the unfortunate decision to try to make their creature somewhat simian to match the canonical yeti -- the result was a teenage ski bunny with a weird nose. (There weren't any bottom looks this week, but this would have been one.)

One thing I noticed was that there was a big mismatch between the age of the models and the age of the characters. It's tough to make a tall thin model look like a tiny big-eyed anime child. The result was that several of the models ended up looking a bit like women at a New Kids on the Block reunion concert trying to relive their teenage years. The Dracula's daughter character really exemplified this, because there was no face prosthetic, so the result was just a late-20's woman with huge fangs wearing clothes from a sweet sixteen party.

No one was eliminated, but the two guys who did the fish model did get immunity. And a bunch of Monster High merchandise from Mattel, so yay?
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Old 02-12-2017, 07:20 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Week 2 Challenge: Niko and Cat's surprise wedding! No wait, that was just her hope.

Actual Challenge: Create 2 characters to reflect the angel and devil on our shoulders - one angel, one devil. Make the characters reflect some trait of the team members, and make both characters into one creation.

Jasmine & Stella: They are completely lost. Head vs Heart? Fear vs. Courage? A goatlike devil with the Angel bursting through via the heart? Finally decide on a bull-headed demon for stubbornness vs. openness of the heart shown by a lighted heart bursting through the chest. Um, yeah, it's that bad. The bull-headed demon doesn't read as a bull: the ears, nose, and horns are all wrong. The angel is represented by this abstract shape and glowing heard sticking out of his chest. To tell how bad the light element is, I didn't even realize it was glowing until Neville mentioned it in the question part. The legs aren't great. This is a mess. Bottom Look, and bottom last week.

Ben & Evan: Selflessness vs. Taking advantage. They start with a Demon eating the angel. Meh. They realize it looks bad, so they change to a split face, devil wrapping around and absorbing the angel. This turns out much better than the original concept. The sculpting and blending are beautiful. The judges love it. Top Look. Redemption from last week, being on bottom.

Cig & George: Creativity vs. Self-doubt. Their angel is Chiseling armor out of the stone that imprisons her. The halo made as stained glass is nicely done, and there is a demon head on the shoulder, but the whole concept is missing something for me. Glen points out the halo looks more Native American in motif. Safe.

Tyler & Emily: Compassion vs. Guilt. They make a statue representing the angel demon character, with the demon represented by corrosion and ruin of the beautiful angel statue. The sculpting is great, and the concept shows a way to tie in the architecture of the church. And the paint and application really come off great as a bronze statue that is corroding. It all reads great and is well-crafted. The weakness is that is shows a statue rather than a character, and that arguably misses the challenge slightly. Top Look. Safe last week.

Logan & Adam: Protection vs. Lust. Guardian angel being seduced by a beautiful devil. Ugh, this is ugly. The concept isn't bad, but the execution is lacking. The demon bursting out of him doesn't have a rhyme or reason, and the hair is ridiculous. I can see what they were going for, but that wig didn't achieve the look successfully. The angel's coloring is muddy. Also, it's two left hands. Bottom Look. Safe last week.

Keaghlan & Melissa: Selflessness being consumed by Self-criticism. Their character is an angel that doesn't look exactly human, given the forehead growing into horns that form the halo as a closed loop. The sculpt is good, but I don't get the concept of the multiple eyeballs consuming the body. Also, the idea was to show the halo starting to break into two devil horns, but the fabrication didn't show that at all. Safe.

Gage & Rachael: Selfishness vs. Giving. Their idea is a demon parasite living in angel, with laced hands for the spine to offset the open arms of the angel. Except the execution reads more like a demon wearing an angel's skin. Also, the paint job is horked up. Rachael started with a really purple color, but Gage didn't like it and tried to darken it up. It sounded to me they didn't communicate on that, instead he just started painting over her work. It ends up dark and muddy. Safe.

Niko & Cat: Loyalty vs. Jealousy. A beautiful bride being rotted from the inside out. This one is stunning. The beauty makeup is exquisite and the rotten side looks spectacular. They do a great job of not doing a straight line down the face, but making it seem more organic in mix. This is also the closest to the idea that I expected. The full costume works as a whole. The wings are some of the best wings ever done on the show - one white, one charred and blackened. My one quibble is the shape of the wings is a bit odd. But this whole is a definite clear fit to the challenge, and the work is all great. Top Look, safe last week.

Winner: Cat & Niko, and well-earned.

Eliminated: Jasmine & Stella, being bottom look two weeks in a row.

McKenzie's dress: black, with white lace patterning in shiny stones.
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Old 02-12-2017, 09:04 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Threads merged.
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Old 02-13-2017, 08:14 AM
delphica delphica is offline
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Thanks for the merge!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post

Keaghlan & Melissa: Selflessness being consumed by Self-criticism. Their character is an angel that doesn't look exactly human, given the forehead growing into horns that form the halo as a closed loop. The sculpt is good, but I don't get the concept of the multiple eyeballs consuming the body. Also, the idea was to show the halo starting to break into two devil horns, but the fabrication didn't show that at all. Safe.
The being covered in eyes is right from the Bible (Ezekiel) ... and I was wondering if either Keaghlan or Melissa knew that from the Bible, or from the Wrinkle in Time series, where it also comes up as a motif. Or an art history class.

This past week, I was completely the opposite of Finagle. Usually when the challenge ties into a current game or movie, it's something where I have no idea what it is, or what the design concept is. But I have a six year old daughter, so let me tell you, it's ALL Monster High up in this house.

I was wondering about the lack of bottom looks ... maybe the show felt it was too harsh to be in the bottom because of a bunch of adult Monster High superfans.

This week there were top looks, and safe looks ... but no bottom looks. I feel like maybe this is because there aren't actual judges, and it seems awfully harsh to be in the bottom because of a bunch of Monster High superfans.

Excellent point about the age of the models factoring in, especially with Emily & Tyler's Draculaura. Not even so much about the model's actual age, but that particular model had a very mature looking face, and it really looked incongruous to me. One of the fans also pointed out that the Goth/Southern belle dress was beautiful, but doesn't really capture the point of the thing, which is that the characters are all trendy high school girls.

Venus McFlytrap by Gage & Rachel was a bit of a dud. Her mouth looked so stiff and unnatural to me, like when you wear those plastic fangs at Halloween and they end up looking more like a dental appliance than a vampire.

Cleo, from Melissa and Keaghlan, wasn't that exciting either. I really liked their hieroglyphic mummy wraps. They absolutely made the right call in scrapping their face prosthetic, but I think their straight beauty make-up could have been a lot more exciting if they had planned on it from the start and had more time with it.

Clawdeen, by Cat and Nico, was okay, I guess. It didn't look like Clawdeen to me, although it was probably fine as a random teenage girl werewolf. I think my biggest issue is that they didn't do the ears on top of her head. You wouldn't think this would be that big of a deal, but it completely changed the balance of her head. The perky ears on top of the giant hair is key to the cuteness of the character.

Adam and Logan were driving me crazy with Abbey Bominable, because they were SO committed to this idea of giving her a monkey nose. Now, there may be something a little unfair about that, because when they consulted with the brand designer from Mattel, they asked something like "but can she really be like the abominable snowman?" and the designer seemed really emphatic when she said "Yes!" I think in their minds, this was the endorsement that she was supposed to look like an ape ... I don't know what the designer thought they meant, though, but it wasn't that. The part that was too bad is that without the nose, the other elements of the design were really great. (In case anyone unfamiliar with Monster High is wondering, the character's design always emphasizes more of the ice element, she's almost like a snow/frost princess, more in the direction of Elsa from Frozen. If I was on the show, I would have really played that up.)

Ben and Evan and their Skelita were a big success. They mentioned they wanted to add more color to the face, but were running out of time, and that is the only thing that could have improved this for me -- to make the face even more Dia de los Muertos.

Lagoona Blue by George and Cig was the winner, and a definite home run for me. They succeeded in making her even more like a sea creature, but at the same time, keeping the character cute and bubble gum glam. I love that they were able to prove that this was possible -- to go more monster, and still have it read as Monster High.

My biggest annoyance with the episode is that once again, the show made a big thing about how some contestants (in this case Cig and George) were completely befuddled by beauty make-up, with the whole "I don't know what mascara is, lol" I think it's really ridiculous that an aspiring make-up professional wouldn't need to master that skill early on. It's going to come up in so many jobs, it's not like you start out at Glenn or Ve's level and get to pick your own jobs and have a whole studio full of other people to delegate things to. Grumble grumble.

Last edited by delphica; 02-13-2017 at 08:15 AM.
  #10  
Old 02-14-2017, 07:16 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delphica View Post
Niko & Cat do a vampire squid. The most successful part to me is that it has a flappy skirt thing that really looks like the webbing or whatever you call that part of a squid. I thought it was weird that it clearly had a muscled chest, but no arms.
Good calls.

Quote:
In the second episode, The Devil is in the Details, the teams have to create a character that is showing both an angel and a devil. They are supposed to use traits of their own for the angelic and the demonic personas. That second piece seemed a little weak to me -- it seemed like the contestants ended up with some random good qualities and bad qualities and not all of them made sense as angels and devils (it was more like Virtues and Sins). The challenge is given to the contestants in a beautiful church with a lot of stained glass, and several of the teams incorporated that into their designs.
Think about how to model personality traits as good and bad. I think the Virtues and Sins fits right in. I also liked how most of the teams used matched sets - Loyalty vs Jealousy, for instance. The only one that was really a mess on this was Stella and Jasmine.


Quote:
Cig & George: They had an angel that was chiseling herself out of a stone demon (I think). This looked reasonably good to me, and also called back to the architecture of the church, the location where they received the challenge. In keeping with the architecture theme, they gave her a stained glass halo, which I thought was an excellent idea ... except they also had some parts hanging off of it that made it look like a Native American headdress. The judges were very focused on this. I didn't think it was as much of a deal-breaker as the judges. (They were safe last week.)
I thought they did a decent job tying in the church architecture, and the stained glass execution was creative and absolutely worked. I get the Native American look, though, and I had the same read. Still, this was a Safe one for me, which is what they got.
  #11  
Old 02-14-2017, 09:08 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Week 3 Challenge: Take Monster High dolls and create realistic characters for a live action movie version.

As previously noted, the dolls themselves do not have much in the way of distinct facial features to work with. This means the contestants will need to conceptualize what it means to be a monster girl.

In an interesting new twist, judging will not use the series judges. Instead, it will be a focus group panel and the Natasha Berling, Mattel Vice President of Design. That's a very different way to go. Usually they make the specialist an extra judge, but this time they are leaving the regular judges out completely. The value of the focus group is getting a read from real Monster High fans on how the makeups turned out, and what they like and dislike. The disadvantage is missing out on technical evaluation from makeup specialists.

Gage & Rachael, Venus McFlytrap - Traits: plant girl, pet flytrap plant. Part of her head is shaved. Tried to make a prop of the pet flytrap Chulean, but it looks too cartoony for me. The teeth are odd, because venus flytraps don't actually have teeth, though the do have spines that help gate the mouth as it closes to trap the insects. Those teeth don't evoke flytrap, they're just ugly. They styling and color work, though the eyebrows don't. Also, her skin tone is a bit flat. The panel observes the face looks a bit more mint, different color than the rest. Actually that doesn't bother me. Look at real people, our skins vary in tones across our bodies. They also note the eyebrows. She does overall capture the look.

Cig & George, Lagoona Blue - Traits: Sea monster - scaling, fins, webbed fingers. They decide to accentuate the fish monster elements rather than downplay them. This one is just beautiful from head to toe. Despite claiming to have never done beauty makeup, they knock this one out. The shimmery paint makes the scales reflect good, the bold shapes and fins and gills make the monster element much more prominent than the dolls. That's a risk, but it pays off big time. This reads like a monster girl, not a girl wearing monster clothes. And even though they play up the creature aspects, she still comes off cute and fun. The panel likes it. One thing that could be taken negatively is they go for a very glam, stylish look while the doll is often portrayed more sporty. That could be seen as missing he character. But instead the fan likes that she can be girly, too. This one is absolutely stunning.

Niko & Cat, Clawdeen Wolf - Traits: werewolf girl. Teeth, big pointy ears, fashionista, big hair. They add a face prosthetic to make the face more wolfish, and then apply hair to the arms and legs like the doll. But that doesn't come out very good. Looks stuck on and tacky. The face prosthetic looks fake to me - almost wooden. I like the attempt to add a wolfish aspect to her face, but the execution is rough. Also, her character is supposed to have big pointed wolf ears. They make pointed ears that attach to her real ears, but they stick out sideways and don't look like wolf ears, they look more elfish. Also,they're still too small and lost in the hair, like Mr. Westmore warned. They really needed to be tall and stick up off the top of her head.

Logan & Adam, Abbey Bominable - Traits: Yeti girl, underbite, teeth. Blue skin. Blunt, direct, straight out. Has pet tiny mammoth in carrying case. They get caught up on the concept that yeti is "simian", but they didn't really verify that with the consultant. They just said yeti version. Apes have all sorts of noses, but they get hung up on the long-nosed monkey, which looks like it has a penis hanging off its face. Yeah, there's no way to make that a cute girl. They skip the underbite and teeth and give that funky nose. Also, their skin tone is more green than the blue of the doll. But the style and flair are right. The panel loves the overall look, but the nose gets everyone.

Ben & Evan, Skelita Calaveras - Traits: Day of the Dead skeleton girl. They decide to make flat bone pieces to make the bones of her body, and use her face for the negative parts of the skeleton face. Interesting idea. This one is a bit mixed for me. They really nail making her look skeletal. However, the skeletal shape of the face detracts from the cute aspect. It's a tough call. It does read as a realistic skeletal creature.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Cleo De Nile - Traits: Mummy girl, not much mummy, mostly girl. Teenage girl with a pedigree, superiority and preferential treatment expected. Wrappings embedded into skin. They start trying to make a whole face prosthetic, for no apparent reason. During application and painting, it looks like crap - a bad drag queen. So they ditch the face - the right call. The face looks a million times better. If they had gone this way from the start, they could have done a bit more with the beauty aspect, but this at least looked real. The bandages turned out great, and the overall look is spot on.

Tyler & Emily, Draculaura - Traits: supercute, fun, girly, frilly and lace, red hair streaks, fangs, drawing colors seem to be red and green, but staffer says pink is her signature color. Without many distinct facial traits, they decide to make bat wings that sprout from her collarbones. Interesting. At first it seemed cheesy to me, but the final result turned out pretty good. The model really helps sell the supercute and fun aspects. The big wig and teeth are great. Maybe the Victorian style dress doesn't quite fit for a hip, young teen girl in the modern world, but they were aiming for a specific look - her birthday party. It definitely reads vampire girl, though maybe the outfit should be less black wedding dress, more fun style. But the panel think it fits.

Draculaura, Skelita, and Lagoona Blue were the panel's favorite three makeups, Top Looks.

Natasha picked Lagoona Blue as the winner.

There was no Bottom Looks this week, possibly because they didn't want to put the focus group under that kind of pressure. Though it does rob us of the fun of evaluating the worst.

McKenzie's outfit - black with pale green trim and intricate lines.
  #12  
Old 02-14-2017, 09:19 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Anyway -- week three was Monster High. The assignment was to take some obnoxiously cute large-eyed Bratz clones from Mattel and turn them into characters for a live action Monster High show. In my mind, this was a very difficult challenge because the dolls rely heavily on the "enormous eyes == cute" gimmick from anime. And several of the dolls didn't really have much in the way of distinguishing features. Also, because the challenge was Mattel dolls, I found I didn't have a lot of interest in the challenge and I suspect that some of the contestant's spontaneous enthusiasm was a bit forced.
Really? You doubt that a bunch of geeks could love action figures dolls? From a monster themed line?


Quote:
One thing I noticed was that there was a big mismatch between the age of the models and the age of the characters. It's tough to make a tall thin model look like a tiny big-eyed anime child. The result was that several of the models ended up looking a bit like women at a New Kids on the Block reunion concert trying to relive their teenage years. The Dracula's daughter character really exemplified this, because there was no face prosthetic, so the result was just a late-20's woman with huge fangs wearing clothes from a sweet sixteen party.
Presumably if Mattel were going to do a live action movie, they'd pick actresses who could pull off looking like teenagers. Given the limitation of the models, I think the makeups themselves were all valid.


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Originally Posted by delphica View Post
Clawdeen, by Cat and Nico, was okay, I guess. It didn't look like Clawdeen to me, although it was probably fine as a random teenage girl werewolf. I think my biggest issue is that they didn't do the ears on top of her head. You wouldn't think this would be that big of a deal, but it completely changed the balance of her head. The perky ears on top of the giant hair is key to the cuteness of the character.
I think this would have been my other Bottom look, for the face prosthetic and the ears. Though if Cleo had come out with her face prosthetic on, that definitely would have been the bottom.
  #13  
Old 02-15-2017, 12:20 AM
Kamino Neko Kamino Neko is offline
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Clawdeen, by Cat and Nico, was okay, I guess. It didn't look like Clawdeen to me, although it was probably fine as a random teenage girl werewolf. I think my biggest issue is that they didn't do the ears on top of her head. You wouldn't think this would be that big of a deal, but it completely changed the balance of her head. The perky ears on top of the giant hair is key to the cuteness of the character.
Ugh...yeah, that bugged me so much. I'm surprised Mr Westmore didn't try to guide them away from that, since it was such a terrible design choice. (Then again, I often find his advice suspect, which is weird, since I really like his work.)

Quote:
My biggest annoyance with the episode is that once again, the show made a big thing about how some contestants (in this case Cig and George) were completely befuddled by beauty make-up, with the whole "I don't know what mascara is, lol" I think it's really ridiculous that an aspiring make-up professional wouldn't need to master that skill early on. It's going to come up in so many jobs, it's not like you start out at Glenn or Ve's level and get to pick your own jobs and have a whole studio full of other people to delegate things to. Grumble grumble.
This also bugged me.

Another thing that bugged me was the choice of characters offered - I know Draculaura's the main face of the line and all, but she offers so little in the way of a jumping off point for fx makeup without going full on horror movie with her. I disagree with the guest judges on the wing-things they did add to her, even. Though, I suppose you do the best with what you got.

I'd have much rather seen Frankie Stein in the mix...it'd be so easy to play up the Frankenstein elements without killing the 'cute girl' aspect.

I actually quite liked the ape-ish Abby, though, personally.
  #14  
Old 02-15-2017, 12:37 AM
Kamino Neko Kamino Neko is offline
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Cleo, from Melissa and Keaghlan, wasn't that exciting either. I really liked their hieroglyphic mummy wraps. They absolutely made the right call in scrapping their face prosthetic, but I think their straight beauty make-up could have been a lot more exciting if they had planned on it from the start and had more time with it.
Oh, and on a more positive note, I agree with this, and think they did pretty darn good, given the compressed timeline scrapping the prosthetic left them with.
  #15  
Old 02-15-2017, 01:58 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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I'd have much rather seen Frankie Stein in the mix...it'd be so easy to play up the Frankenstein elements without killing the 'cute girl' aspect.
Not having Frankie seemed really odd to me, too. I let my 6 year old watch this one, and she kept asking when they were going to show Frankie.
  #16  
Old 02-15-2017, 03:35 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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Week 2 Challenge: Niko and Cat's surprise wedding!
And week 4, Niko and Cat's surprise weeding. In retrospect, after looking at last week's rather unimpressive werewolf and this week's Statue of Liberty ice queen, it's not that surprising, except that they had a win on Week 2 and went out on the reveal stage thinking that they'd done a pretty good job. They were visibly crushed when the verdict came down. Not sure I'd seen contestants so shaken. Part of that may be due to this being an All Stars match where the level of competition is really pretty damn high. A makeup that would have sailed through week 4 of a typical Face Off competition just doesn't quite make the grade.

Notably, the other bottom look (Keaghlan and Melissa?) really had a lot of good things going for it. The judges just fixated on the proportions and positioning of the headpiece that gave the character a somewhat masculine appearance.

I was a little annoyed that we didn't get a better look at Cig and George's use of makeup under silicone. They had immunity so the judges didn't spend much time on their model, aside from muttering that the technique would be more suitable in some other competition.

Tyler and Emily pulled off a stunning snow on trees effect for their ice queen. Not surprising, as this challenge is absolutely in Emily's bailiwick. Her weakness, as they foreshadowed in this episode, is that she is really, really young and has seen very few movies. So anything that requires genre savvy, rather than just a decent sense of aesthetics is going to prove challenging for her.

Tough week. Lost a couple of talented and popular contestants.

Not sure how the handicapping is shaping up (we've already lost a team with a win), but for my money, it will be Cig and George against Tyler and Emily. Except that this being "a new and different Face Off", in the final, they'll probably break up the teams, and send them into a dome to kill or be killed.

Last edited by Finagle; 02-15-2017 at 03:35 PM.
  #17  
Old 02-15-2017, 06:31 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Ugh...yeah, that bugged me so much. I'm surprised Mr Westmore didn't try to guide them away from that, since it was such a terrible design choice. (Then again, I often find his advice suspect, which is weird, since I really like his work.)
I think Mr. Westmore is trying to walk the line between advising them on how to make their makeup choices work best versus taking away their creative choices and approaches. "That looks like ass" is a valid observation. "Put the ears on top of the head, not the sides" is more subjective, it's about how you execute and whether that choice was a good one, which is what the judging is for.

Quote:
Another thing that bugged me was the choice of characters offered - I know Draculaura's the main face of the line and all, but she offers so little in the way of a jumping off point for fx makeup without going full on horror movie with her. I disagree with the guest judges on the wing-things they did add to her, even. Though, I suppose you do the best with what you got.
I kinda wondered about that, what else could they do besides ears and fangs? They did, too. Thus the collar thing. Note: if it was supposed to be forming wings during transformation, it doesn't work for me - wings come out of the back.
  #18  
Old 02-15-2017, 07:13 PM
Kamino Neko Kamino Neko is offline
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I think Mr. Westmore is trying to walk the line between advising them on how to make their makeup choices work best versus taking away their creative choices and approaches.
Yeah, but he's not generally been shy about saying stuff like 'are you sure that's a good idea?' or what effect they're going for. He's more than once given advice that prompted the team to scrap their whole design.
  #19  
Old 02-16-2017, 04:21 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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In that specific case, he had short pointed ears and told them to make them longer so they stick out of the wig and can be seen. Otherwise it's a waste of time and effort. He didn't see the "point out to the side" version.

I was also commenting more generically. Kamino Neko said, "Then again, I often find his advice suspect," whereas I usually find his advice to be spot on. I think there was one challenge I remember where he said do something a certain way and the judges dinged them for doing it that way. I almost always agree with what he says, or think his advice is helpful.

He also wasn't very thrilled with the full face prosthetic, but gave them advice on how to do it well.
  #20  
Old 02-16-2017, 07:54 PM
smiling bandit smiling bandit is offline
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Last edited by smiling bandit; 02-16-2017 at 07:55 PM.
  #21  
Old 02-16-2017, 09:13 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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Notably, the other bottom look (Keaghlan and Melissa?) really had a lot of good things going for it. The judges just fixated on the proportions and positioning of the headpiece that gave the character a somewhat masculine appearance.
I liked this one a lot, too. The judges were exactly right that the headpiece was too low, but other than that, I thought the design was beautiful. I didn't think it looked particularly masculine. But when you have a field this good, someone has to be in the bottom.

And yeah, speaking of the bottom, Cat and Niko's was awful. Really bad. It looked like those performers who stand around like the Statue of Liberty at tourist attractions. They are both really sweet, I liked them on the show, but it wasn't even close.

In the safe looks, Gage and Rachael's had some good elements, but I thought it had almost as many issues as Keaghlan and Melissa's. It was okay, but maybe not, to me, all star good.

Cig and George -- first, could Cig please stop with the dumb stuff on his head? I liked a lot of the concepts, but I agreed with whichever judge (Glenn?) said that it was cool, but maybe not for this particular challenge. I don't think it was quite beautiful enough to meet that aspect of the challenge. I was disappointed by the spine ice scepter. They were obviously so delighted with themselves when they were making it, but then it ended up as if they just slapped on some leftover icicles.

I liked Evan and Ben's black ice queen better than the judges. Absolutely that chin piece looked like a weird beard. If that was gone, I would love this so much. I liked that it's different, and I liked the darkness. But because of the chin growth, safe is the best this was going to do.

The best part of Logan and Adam's, for me, was the beauty make-up. It was stunning. I didn't like the armor so much, it looked fake to me. At some point they were talking about how they painted it so it wouldn't look like foam ... it totally looked like foam.

Tyler and Emily really deserved this win! For all that they keep piling on Emily for not knowing iconic movies and such, I don't feel like it's ever held her back. (Although I'm intrigued by Finagle's suggestion that it's foreshadowing.) She has a great, great eye for balance and form.
  #22  
Old 02-20-2017, 09:37 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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This Week's Challenge: Snow Queens. Make a winter/ice/snow queen worthy of a live action film inspired by a unique snowflake, and have to do it in 2 days.

Niko & Cat: They decide the blocky shape of their snowflake is reminiscent of a statue, so they want to do an ice sculpture inspired by the Statue of Liberty. I think the ice sculpture idea is pretty interesting and original, but the Statue of Liberty element is not. It's derivative without being inspired, and it is drab and plain for an ice queen. Then you get to the execution - that hair looks like stone sculpture, not ice sculpture. The beauty makeup is pretty good for their concept, but the overall result is lacking. Bottom looks.

Gage & Rachael: Their queen is pretty good. The face lends itself more to alien than ice, but the paint job is pretty. The ice spires for a crown are good, the coils of hair behind them aren't bad but a little sloppy. Lovely dress. They get Safe.

Cig & George: They want to do an evil queen that was trapped beneath the ice and died, thus making her magical or whatever. The face concept is original to use clear silicone face and use paint under the mask for coloration. The face part really pulls off the look they desired, really getting the evil queen a unique look. However, that's the only part that's good. The dress is a mess, the hair is a big, lumpy, misshapen triangular disproportional pile of poo. It looks like one of those French bicorn hats like Napoleon wore. The ice spine scepter is okay, but not enough to save the rest of it. I call it bad, but immunity made it Safe.

Ben & Evan: This is another one that seems to have gone off track for me, starting with their concept. They want to do a "black ice" queen and use black as the primary color (with deep greens as the accent color for some reason - trees?) Somebody needs to tell them that "black ice" isn't black, it's clear. It looks black because it reflects the night sky over roadways. So right off the bat they are off target, but somehow Neville figures out their intent. Okay, but how does it look? The headdress shape and shoulders don't read as ice, even black ice. And the color scheme is boggling. Plus, they put that chin piece on her that does look like a beard. But what's with her face being bright and pale green while the rest of her so so dark? It's pretty, but I don't see how it fits the concept. This would have been in Bottom looks, for me, but for some reason the judges gave it Safe.

Tyler & Emily: This one is the clear winner. The work is beautiful, but what really puts it over the top is the concept, doing an ice queen as ice over something. They originally called her "evergreen", but apparently morphed that somewhere into the Queen of Winter dying as spring arrives. My one quibble is they use evergreen bits for leaves, but then there isn't much green in her. But that doesn't even register, because everything else is so good. The chest piece sculpt to give tree texture to the female form, the brow piece crown that frames the face, the big hair. Top Look.

Logan & Adam: They went for a warrior queen, which is fine, but again there is something in the execution that is lacking. The face is lovely, the colors work, the shapes for the headpiece are fine. But that armor - it looks nothing like ice. It looks like foam painted to resemble rocks or something. It's thick, clunky, and unweildy. I guess the stenciling moved it up in their opinion. Given the problems with others, I guess it is Tops.

Keaghlan & Melissa: This one I disagree with the judges. It's not nearly as bad as they claim, it's better than three of the others above. From afar, that belt doesn't work, it makes her look fat. And the face sculpt and paint does accentuate the cheekbones and jawline, giving a masculine air to the result. I don't think the crown is appreciably lower than Tyler and Emily's, but maybe the difference is this particular execution as a whole would look better higher. I think the paint itself is pretty. The judges also comment on the ice spines out of her back, and I can see how they don't read well.

Winner: Emily & Tyler.

Eliminated: Cat & Niko.

Adding in the results from the previous week, Cat & Niko had that dreadful Clawdeen Wolf, so they were deserving to leave.

MacKenzie's dress: white and sparkly, like snow.


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Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
Part of that may be due to this being an All Stars match where the level of competition is really pretty damn high. A makeup that would have sailed through week 4 of a typical Face Off competition just doesn't quite make the grade.
Yes, most of the beauty makeups this latest challenge were pretty good. On first review, I was having trouble deciding which was better.


Quote:
I was a little annoyed that we didn't get a better look at Cig and George's use of makeup under silicone. They had immunity so the judges didn't spend much time on their model, aside from muttering that the technique would be more suitable in some other competition.
That's the unfortunate result of the format. They have to emphasize the competition element at the expense of the technique element. I didn't have the problem they did with it, but there were plenty of other problems, so they were lucky they had immunity.


Quote:
Not sure how the handicapping is shaping up (we've already lost a team with a win), but for my money, it will be Cig and George against Tyler and Emily. Except that this being "a new and different Face Off", in the final, they'll probably break up the teams, and send them into a dome to kill or be killed.
It's still a bit early for handicapping to mean much. Emily & Tyler right now are on a roll.

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Originally Posted by delphica View Post
The best part of Logan and Adam's, for me, was the beauty make-up. It was stunning. I didn't like the armor so much, it looked fake to me. At some point they were talking about how they painted it so it wouldn't look like foam ... it totally looked like foam.
I get the concept - paint the surface in latex to make it smooth, not pitted. Didn't really work out.

Quote:
Tyler and Emily really deserved this win! For all that they keep piling on Emily for not knowing iconic movies and such, I don't feel like it's ever held her back. (Although I'm intrigued by Finagle's suggestion that it's foreshadowing.) She has a great, great eye for balance and form.
It could be a hindrance on a challenge that relies on the specifics of the universe/characters/storyline. However, if Tyler can fill those in, she has a great eye for color and form.
  #23  
Old 02-26-2017, 06:34 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Okay, this week was "Troubling Transformations" - the teams have to use two models to make one character in two different stages of transformation in a sort of Jekyll/Hyde way. On the line: immunity next week, no one eliminated this week.

Fun note: they come into the lab for the challenge announcement and it's decked out with all sorts of weird science stuff - test tubes, jars of preserved critters, anthropology skulls, electrical equipment, etc., and Emily says that's what her bedroom looks like.

Also, Mackenzie's outfit is a two-piece skirt/top that is deep blue (not navy) and black.

Two things for the reveal: first, they use the midtransformation scientist but do a "before" picture prior to any of the costuming, so they can have three points in the transition, not just two. Interesting way to do that. Second, guest judge this week is John Landis.

Ben & Evan, Chemical Exposure: A rogue scientist making a human growth hormone, but it goes wrong and the chemical makes him bulk up on one side, then eats away his skin and makes his muscles atrophy. Note: I'm watching Ben as he sculpts the monster's shoulder and arm, and he is doing a great job at accurate anatomy. At the reveal, I don't like the long hair -doesn't read "scientist". The mid-transformation look is too subtle. They put an appliance on the face, and the paint job is pretty close (it reads just a tad yellow on TV, but maybe not on the set), but it doesn't show much beefing up of musculature, just makes his face lumpy. They also put an appliance on his pectoral and shoulder, but they are also too subtle - you can hardly tell any difference. If the point is to show the muscles being transformed, you need to show some difference. Also, the edges on the chest and shoulder are bad. The final monster is somewhat better, in that it is really bigger, but it's a bit difficult to figure out what is happening. How did the glasses get bent up? And the head has an unexplained shape on top. Plus, his pecs aren't as big - maybe that's the atrophy? Bottom look.

Logan & Adam. Radiation Exposure: They want to do a campy hokey look for "space radiation". They describe in the set up that an astronaut is exposed to radiation from an asteroid shard, and half his body gets blistered and deformed from runaway mutation. The full monster is covered with boils and has a huge left arm with weird claws at the end. Adam tries to build a harness that mounts to the shoulder for the upper arm, but his rig doesn't work, so he's left with only the lower arm and a gap in the costume, which he fills with some fabric from the space suit. They are going for a campy look, and they achieve it. The fully transformed head and arm are huge, the paint job works. Minor quibble that the midtransformation is missing the whole left sleeve, then the full transformation regrows some sleeve, but that's a successful cover for the whole in the appliance. Also, Logan gets creative and makes a face mold to have part of the model's face embedded in the final monster, to show it comes from the guy. Only problem - he sculpts the left half of the face, but on the midtransformation look, that side is already messed up and the right side is okay. Oops. The judges overlook or miss that. Top look.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Insect DNA Splicing: Their scientist is trying to use bug DNA to create a supersoldier, but it goes wrong and he starts to develop bug exoskeleton and his internal organs liquefy and burst out of his skin. The midtransformation has the skin ripping and bulges forming and goo leaking out. Hard to read as "bug". The skin overlaps the hair, but doesn't read as exoskeleton forming. Final monster, the color choice is odd. Keaghlan says she based it on colors from real bugs, but a white stripe on the face and turquoise colors around the face give it an odd appearance. Also, I notice the eye hole edges lifted. Melissa says she hopes the judges will see all of the positives and forgive the negatives. Well, doesn't everyone? It doesn't work that way. Glen thinks the red, white, and blue face paint job is tacky. Bottom look.

Tyler & Emily, Electrical Shock: Their scientist injects himself with "metals", but it goes wrong and he is transformed into a giant that conducts electricity and has metals rusting through. I will give them this - that is an original and creative idea. It's not the clichéd burn marks or Frankenstein. Their midtransformation has half the face affected, and the application is spectacular, the edges are invisible. The coloration shows grays like they are showing through the skin as it becomes transformed, and rusty red spots for exposed metal. The full monster pushes that around the entire head and chest. The judges like the smoothness of the color blending. The judges are really impressed. Top look.

Cig & George, Medical Augmentation: An amputee scientist decides go create a new arm that is stronger, faster, better, except something goes wrong and the arm's biology starts to take control. The mid-transformation look has the beginnings of runaway bone growth via bone spurs. The full result is a monster covered in spikes. That's the concept, anyway. What do we get? First off, there's something weird with the costumes where the midtransformation looks like a woman in a dress instead of a lab coat. The face lacks any coherence to the bone growths. I do agree with Glen, there is something interesting in the face of the full monster, but overall it's a mess. Also, the midtransformation has Glen's hairstyle. This gets Safe.

Gage & Rachael, Horticultural Hybridization: Their scientist experiments with some plant DNA, and transforms into a giant plant monster. They decide to go with Venus Flytrap - I hope they do better than the last Venus Flytrap on the show. (They don't.) Gage started sculpting the face, but Rachael didn't like it - it looked too "snake-like". She took over, but she doesn't do very much - it doesn't look different to me. Then Gage took on the mid transformation, and "made an aesthetic choice that may not make sense but just looks cool". That doesn't bode well. On the reveal stage, it's hard to tell what is happening midtransformation. The face has random bumps and veins and purplish colors, and their is a brow ridge on the right that doesn't show up on the full monster. Okay, I will accept the chest looks like it is connected between the two, but the connection to plants is missing. The concept is venus flytrap, but the mouth doesn't look anything like those. It is a weird wrap around the chin. The teeth don't look like flytrap grips. There is nothing leafy and green. The judges can't see the connection, either, but these two get lucky and come up Safe.

Winner: Emily & Tyler - well done

No elimination, but Keaglan and Melissa need to step up next week to stay in.


Mackenzie's dress - black with intricate gray lacey patterning. Maybe it's green and blue.
  #24  
Old 02-27-2017, 09:53 AM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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It seems like there's one episode in every competition where I don't like anybody's design. And this was the episode. I was kind of wincing when I heard them talking about their concepts and it seemed like they were all going down the "glue on all sorts of gross crap and call it a failed experiment" route.

I agree that Emily and Tyler's design showed some restraint and was the best of the lot, but to me, they all looked like last minute halloween costumes. Maybe I was just in a cranky mood.

Anyway, I don't know if the elimination is based on the aggregate of the last two weeks, but Ben and Evan have a hole to dig themselves out of. Again.
  #25  
Old 02-27-2017, 11:39 AM
delphica delphica is offline
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It seems like there's one episode in every competition where I don't like anybody's design. And this was the episode. I was kind of wincing when I heard them talking about their concepts and it seemed like they were all going down the "glue on all sorts of gross crap and call it a failed experiment" route.
This is true for me, too! Maybe it's that the challenge that simply doesn't resonate with me -- I didn't think it was that interesting even upon first announcement. None of the finished products really thrilled me. I thought Emily and Tyler's was "okay, fine."

I got a kick out of John Landis, though. He's definitely in the top tier of guest judges in terms of his successes and name recognition. I liked that he was nonchalant about saying what he liked, even when the other judges didn't like it.
  #26  
Old 02-27-2017, 07:17 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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It's not clear how eliminations are picked. It appears to be selecting from the Bottom Looks from that week, then maybe considering the past week as an additional comparator. The don't seem to be actively considering the Bottom looks from the previous week. I guess if you make Bottom and then Safe, you're Safe, but if you make Safe then Bottom, you might be eliminated.
  #27  
Old 03-01-2017, 01:03 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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A slightly irritating show last night, because it began with what was essentially a five minute commercial for a Hyandai Veloster. Did they change sponsors? Anyway, the contestants gamely put up with the product pimpage and then went on to the challenge, which was to design characters for Mad Max post apocalypse style vehicles. Part of the challenge was to incorporate car parts into the designs.

Cig and George knocked this one out of the park with an burn scarred female warrior. They got the look and the attitude right. Emily and Tyler came up with a beautiful and beautifully executed design that was completely and utterly wrong for the challenge. Unless there is some post-apocalyptic beauty salon where you can get your beauty makeup touched up in between duking it out with other tribes for gasoline and rattlesnake meat. I think this was one of those cases where Emily's lack of genre smarts showed. But the judges loved everything else about it, so they ended up safe.

The three bottom looks had various issues -- Logan and Adam, I think, threw some crud on their model at the last minute to make it grittier, but that had the effect of concealing a lot of their detail work. (One of the few cases in Face Off where I've heard a contestant really blame the other for a bad decision.) One of the other teams did this kind of vast open wound protected by a mesh headlight shield, but it didn't really look very good.

Two surprising things about the judging. First, when they announced the winner, they didn't do the "And the winner is...commercial..." bit. Maybe they got all the crass commercialism out of their system at the beginning of the show. And, second, the three bottom looks got an extra hour of last looks to improve their design. And, the eliminated team was ... to be continued next week. Oh, the suspense.

In addition to these changes, I thought the editing was really unusual this week. Either I was micro-napping during the show or they really sped up the first day design and critique part. One moment they're designing, and all of a sudden Michael Westmore is there critiquing, and then day 1 is done.
  #28  
Old 03-01-2017, 02:50 PM
Kamino Neko Kamino Neko is offline
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And, second, the three bottom looks got an extra hour of last looks to improve their design. And, the eliminated team was ... to be continued next week. Oh, the suspense.
Not the first time they've done this. The monster family challenge from season 9 had it.

Quote:
Either I was micro-napping during the show or they really sped up the first day design and critique part. One moment they're designing, and all of a sudden Michael Westmore is there critiquing, and then day 1 is done.
Obviously it was a bit shorter due to the longer intro section, but I didn't notice it being particularly fast.

I agree with the judges on pretty much everything this week, as far as the critiquing of the actual designs went.

I do, though, find myself disappointed that the ones who chose the bike didn't go with a design more tailored to the bike. The samurai theme was pretty cool, but aside the bike would be an extension of it, not the other way around, if you catch my drift.
  #29  
Old 03-01-2017, 04:03 PM
amarinth amarinth is offline
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Cig and George knocked this one out of the park with an burn scarred female warrior. They got the look and the attitude right.
While Cig and George did an amazing job - their model also sold the hell out of that look. Some of the models are definitely better at bringing the characters to life than others. And I wonder how much of an effect that has on the judges. It isn't going to make something bad into something good - but it might make something bad into something safe or something good into something great.
  #30  
Old 03-02-2017, 07:27 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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This week's challenge: sell Hyundai.

Oh, I mean, take a post-apocalyptic vehicle and create the wasteland character that drives that vehicle. Incorporate at least three random pieces of junk from a trunk into the character.

They often start with a challenge driven by a sponsor as a way to promote that sponsor, but this episode is particularly in-your-face. Hyundai's slogan is apparently "We make things better", and we get to look over a Hyundai Veloster and get all the competitors to fawn and drool.

Then we get six vehicles: a motorcycle, a dune buggy with cowskin and bones motif, a VW Beetle body jacked up on a 4-wheel drive truck chassis, a muscle car with a sawblade launcher on top, an old square-bodied limo with a turret gun on top and various other guns mounted on the frame, and some sort of long diesel vehicle with a cage on front for hauling around corpses.

Guest Judge: Paul W. S. Anderson, director of the Resident Evil franchise.

Cig & George, muscle car: They had a coherent character idea, which they benefitted from the vehicle having so many creative elements. I like the taillight covers as thigh armor, and the tank on the shoulder looks functional. I'm not an expert on what burn scars look like, so it's difficult to say how well the shapes and colors pull off. Also, the accidental mounting of the headpiece askew turned out to be one of the features the judges liked most, the asymmetry of it. And yes, the model really sold the attitude. Top look.

Ben & Evan, VW Beetle-truck: They also went with the fire theme and made a burn-scarred character, this guy having a suit to help keep him cool and a flamethrower. The costume elements work pretty well, but the judges aren't as happy with the burn scarring on the face. Also, they craft a clear mask that has coolant in it, which turns out not looking too bad. I think the chest armor is supposed to resemble the front VW panel on the vehicle. Or maybe that's just me. Safe.

Tyler & Emily, cow dune buggy: When I saw the drawing during the design phase segment, I couldn't tell what was going on with the head. They mentioned having three towers sticking out, but I couldn't see them in the sketch. On stage, I finally saw that they opted for an extreme body modification of stretching the skin from the scalp up onto the towers. Also, the face was too neat and pretty. She doesn't look like she's living in the wasteland. The body paint and arms fit better. Basically that's the two elements that don't really fit the challenge. However, the character is cool, and they have immunity anyway. Safe.

Logan & Adam, motorcycle: They claim they want a samurai figure, but their character doesn't really have much samurai look. The curved swords aren't right (and the sword used in the first sketch is also wrong, being a European long sword). The birdskull headdress gives it a unique look, but I don't know about that eyepiece. Is that just some patch she cobbled up, or is it supposed to do something? I'm amused the plastic swords broke on first swing around, but fortunately they found it early. And Adam, those aren't scabbards. The character certainly has a Mad Max feel. However, in an attempt at verisimilitude, Logan decides to add dust to the face to show the kind of dirtiness that this warrior would acquire, but goes a bit dark and heavy and instead covers up much of the face paint work. Also, the character has scars as tally marks on the arm, but they are dull and plain.

Gage & Rachael, diesel truck thing: They see a metal cage and think "He's got some sort of detector device embedded in his chest." The concept itself isn't great, and then the execution is also poor, with the shapes and colors on the chest not making sense. Also, the face sculpt comes out bad, so they opt to do manual overlay during last looks using something called fish skin, that is thin and gives texture. The wrinkles don't really read as organic, and a couple of edges lift.

Keaghlan & Melissa, machine-gun limo: Because of all the guns on the car, they decide their character lost an arm and replaced it with a machine gun. They also give her a scar across the face anda bad eye, then decorate her with some black and gold face paint. The gold in particular is too neat, and the paint doesn't look lived-in. The machine-gun arm works differently than I thought. Instead of just having the gun replace the forearm, they have it mounted to the arm on a swivel and operated by the left hand. That's neat. However, Neville points out the bone sticking out of the end of the stump that's coated in gold, and how ridiculous that looks.

In another twist, they speak to all teams, then give the bottom three groups (Logan & Adam, Gage & Rachael, and Keaghlan & Melissa) another 1 hour last looks to make changes as suggested by the judges to improve their character. So they go off and do the work, and then to be continued next week.

Winner: Cig & George.

Is it just me, or did Mr. Westmore's make up look particularly off this week? I could clearly see the line on the side of his neck where the make up ended, and it had a weird yellowish tinge to me.

Mackenzie's outfit - I'm not as thrilled this week with the gold lame jacket and black pants. Kinda bland.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finagle View Post
The three bottom looks had various issues -- Logan and Adam, I think, threw some crud on their model at the last minute to make it grittier, but that had the effect of concealing a lot of their detail work. (One of the few cases in Face Off where I've heard a contestant really blame the other for a bad decision.) One of the other teams did this kind of vast open wound protected by a mesh headlight shield, but it didn't really look very good.
Actually, he didn't rat out his partner on stage, just during the commentary segment.

Quote:
Two surprising things about the judging. First, when they announced the winner, they didn't do the "And the winner is...commercial..." bit. Maybe they got all the crass commercialism out of their system at the beginning of the show.
That threw me. I hit fast forward and then realized I was missing show. They moved that commercial slot until after they announced a second hour of last looks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amarinth View Post
While Cig and George did an amazing job - their model also sold the hell out of that look. Some of the models are definitely better at bringing the characters to life than others. And I wonder how much of an effect that has on the judges. It isn't going to make something bad into something good - but it might make something bad into something safe or something good into something great.
I've certainly seen times when the model's attitude helped the character appear more real, and times when the attitude was limp.
  #31  
Old 03-15-2017, 10:58 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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And now I'm behind...

First, the conclusion from the previous week. Which team of three did the worst job fixing their drecky character?

Logan & Adam: They cleaned up the dirt and added back tattoos, for some reason brightened the eyepatch to gold, and enhanced the color on the scarring on the face. Also, they removed the big bird bone head and strapped it to her chest for some reason. I don't recall the judges saying to remove it, but maybe that was a comment that was edited out. Glen thinks they could have put it on the back of the head rather than sitting over the face. Also, while improving the scars on the arm, they still didn't satisfy Ve.

Gage & Rachael: They removed the cage from the chest and tried to cover it up as much as possible, which was seriously needed. They also removed the peeling fish skin on the face and applied some face paint patterns. But they tried to follow Glen's advice and move the cage to the head, except they couldn't do much to transform the shape, so how they implemented it didn't do anything to help the character. Glen didn't like it.

Keaghlan & Melissa: First, they improved the scar coloration. Then they smudged and smeared the face paint to look lived in. They also enhanced the scarring on the right cheek. And they dirtied up the hair. And of course they removed that dreadful bone on the arm.

Team eliminated: Gage & Rachael. I agree, that one didn't get much improvement. I think Keaghlan & Melissa's was most improved. She looked more authentic and scarier.

So now we get to the new challenge: make an alternate version of Pinocchio if Gappetto had been a different kind of craftsman instead of a carpenter. This is an immunity challenge, no elimination, but they only have two days.

Guest judge this week: Suzanne Todd, an award-winning producer.

Cig & George, Tanner: Tanner is a very cool choice, getting to make their puppet out of leather. Given how many times people have accidentally achieved that look, this will be interesting. George happens to have been a puppeteer, so he has a background to draw upon. They opt to go comedic, so they make a leather rodeo clown whose job is to keep the people safe. Their concept really plays up the goofiness, with a barrel, a large hat that has cow horns on it, arrows sticking out of random spots from kids playing around, and a leather mustache. I'm thinking it looks over the top. George does some great work making the horns out of Styrofoam, really capturing the texture and color. During last looks, they realize the character doesn't read well, and they smartly adjust the concept to fit what feels right, so they ditch the big hat, the arrows, and the mustache, and tone down the silliness. It's a smart move. Fortunately the head sculpt had a complete top and they painted it, I guess thinking he might remove the hat. Anyway, the end result is really good. The texture reads as leather, and Cig put in an extreme amount of detail work to make stitches in the leather work. I also love the choice of leather for the hair. The judges love the craftsmanship of the detail. Top Look.

Ben & Evan, Goldsmith: This is the category that I wouldn't want, because I don't really know what that means. Do you go with delicate jewelry? Apparently they are as lost as I am, because they go more toward a blacksmith except working with gold. After struggling to find a concept, they settle on a ballerina to replace the goldsmith's daughter. They have an interesting concept for making the molds for hinges in the joints, molding them flat to wrap around the joints. But they run into a problem on application, in that the texture difference for the latex pieces versus the skin with hair make the edge lines too obvious and the skin doesn't read like flat gold. Body hair! Doh! Also, they do something strange with the hairline and have the edges of the gold metal extend over her hairline. It is a strange choice that doesn't give a good explanation of how the doll has hair applied. The hinges themselves look great, with the large wingnuts to secure the joints in different poses. Not so good.

Logan & Adam, Stonemason: They want to go ironic and funny, so they decide a stone puppet that wants to be a sailor is the way to go. They opt to go with a granite look, but the color they pick is fairly blue, which makes it hard to read as stone. Grayer would be better. The shapes they pick for the hands, arms, and legs are vague and don't read as stone, just blobs. In an effort to play up the silliness, they give him a squirrely grin that's a bit too much. Adam tells a goofy story, but it doesn't help. It just doesn't read well. Not so good.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Blacksmith: Keaghlan's dad is a welder, so she has experience with metal work. They make a blacksmith's apprentice made out of metal scraps from the shop, so they make a Tinmanesque robot instead of a strict puppet (marionette), but it fits their category and the story works. They have a bit of a disagreement over the paint job, and both work over the other person's paint. Poor coordination. Melissa's design for the suit anticipates the means of donning, so everything velcros on and fits on quickly. That's smart. The result is a very good looking metal man, including some good details in using red lights shining out openings to simulate an internal fire, and a chimney that has a smoke effect. That's pretty cool. I think the paint turned out to look metallic. Glen thinks there is something missing about the face, and I have to agree. This is certainly a Top Look.

Tyler & Emily, Tailor: They get to make a doll out of fabric. They make a ballerina to dance forever, but she's wearing down over time, getting dirty and frayed. They have a great technique to make the underlying fabric of the doll. They sculpt latex pieces to cover all her exposed body parts under the dress so the skin looks like fabric and has stitches. Cool. And then for the face, Emily creates a wonderful technique to make a latex mask read as fabric by gluing fuzz all over the mask. As for the result, they end up with a stunning doll with lots of great details. Emily's face technique is awesome, and she caps it off with a great beauty make up, not so much about lots of color, but rather an appropriate subtle brightening to make the face pop. They eyes are also bright blue contacts that pop. The hair is amazing, looking like yarn, and Tyler applied cotton in all the seams to make the stuffing coming out, and dirtied it up good. This is exquisite. I want one. Top Look.

Winner: Tyler & Emily - I think creating the face technique pushed them over the top.

Lucky Bastards: Logan & Adam. If this were an elimination week, it would be them.

MacKenzie's outfit - a red dress with a flaired skirt that has two white stripes and a little black one around it. Not as eye-catching as some of the more intricate dresses she wears, but not bad.

Once again, for some reason Mr. Westmore's make up really stands out.
  #32  
Old 03-16-2017, 04:55 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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I hope my summaries aren't shutting down conversation. I post as a means of processing and as a record I can refer back to throughout the season, to remind myself of my observations.
  #33  
Old 03-16-2017, 05:32 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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I hope my summaries aren't shutting down conversation. I post as a means of processing and as a record I can refer back to throughout the season, to remind myself of my observations.
Not at all! I saw this week's, but I missed last week's and wanted to go back to watch before commenting. Since it wasn't an elimination week, I guess it doesn't matter that much, but I am a completist about things like this.
  #34  
Old 03-17-2017, 07:49 AM
vislor vislor is offline
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I hope my summaries aren't shutting down conversation. I post as a means of processing and as a record I can refer back to throughout the season, to remind myself of my observations.
NO! Please don't stop! I enjoy your summaries. Just haven't been here, SDMB in general, a lot to comment but I did stop in to follow this thread.

I have really enjoyed this season. Some basics on that. I really like how they have switched it up. Now it's a team elimination every other week instead of weekly. I enjoy seeing the lack of drama, except them being critical of themselves, so I'm glad that has continued.

I'm really curious as to why they are doing an all stars. Why bring back people? Has the show brought about more talent in the pool and this is a way to increase skills? Give them a second chance?

(And now that they have done that, i would love to know where previous contestants are, not just winners or finalists but many of them.)

My wife and I are convinced that Tyler and Emily are going to win this season. They haven't had a miss and only lost when they did something that didn't fit the challenge. Even then, it was a top look for how well they had done.

As for this week, I wasn't thrilled that they held over the results. They could have edited out four minutes from the previous show to show this, so I wasn't thrilled with that but it's a minor point.

The rest of it was summed up well by Irishman, as usual. Logan & Adam's was awful. I don't know why they didn't see that earlier. The face was bad and all of it was out of proportion, even to itself.

The doll by Tyler and Emily was exquisite! You know a team will win when they invent a technique the judges haven't seen!

I agree that the goldsmith is tough. I don't know when they did the rivets but if they had done that at the head, instead of the abrupt transition, it would have been much better. Perhaps a bit more aging as well?

The blacksmith was so good as well. It's got to be tough when another team is just on their game and it raises that bar so much.

What's also interesting to me is how much things have changed over the years on the show, in terms of the talent. Any of these contestants would have won first, second, and maybe third season easily. Quality is just that high for technique and ability.

I was bummed that they didn't do two seasons last year as they had the previous year but with this switch up, I figured that's why.

Really enjoying the show and thanks again for the summaries, Irishman!
  #35  
Old 03-17-2017, 09:08 AM
amarinth amarinth is offline
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I hope my summaries aren't shutting down conversation. I post as a means of processing and as a record I can refer back to throughout the season, to remind myself of my observations.
Please continue posting these - I really like them.
I don't always comment because a lot of the time, my comments would be "____ was cool." which may not be worth posting.
  #36  
Old 03-17-2017, 08:10 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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This week's elimination challenge: a comedic Fantasy duo fit for an epic movie, using an unlikely pair of characters. Except to make it tougher, the models come out wearing funny-shaped body suits, and have been preassigned a fantasy race.

The immediately obvious detail is the awkwardness of the body suits, and how anatomically ridiculous they are. Two of the males have big, oversized pot bellies that hang inordinately low. I'm sure that plays to the comedic element, but makes the realism element a challenge. The other challenge is that the body suits are stuffing that needs to read like flesh and blood (and fat). Suffice it to say, there is a strong challenge here.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Fairy & Troll: They are a married couple going on a vacation, so they're going to be wearing contemporary tourist attire. Interesting choice, can they pull it off and still read right? Melissa takes the Troll, and she takes the premise that trolls turn into stone in sunlight, so she gives the Troll sunburn on his ears and nose that turn into petrification. That's a nice element. Her troll looks pretty good, even in a Hawaiian shirt and ball cap. Keaghlan's fairy, on the other hand, doesn't work. She spends a lot of effort on an old age make up, and is worried about making the face too fantasy, but what she creates doesn't have much to sell it as a fairy. As Glen says, a lavender face and two tiny wings does not make a fairy. Sure, her nose is a bit upturned and pointy, but other than that, there isn't anything different. She could have had eyelashes of feathers or flower petals for hair or even just delicate feature enhancements. Nope. Bottom look.

Tyler & Emily, Goblin & Faun: Their goblin is a sneaky, greedy character who is manipulating the kind, gentle faun to go on a quest to steal treasure from the castle. There is so much hair in their characters that Tyler gets to make the goblin wig while Emily is laying hair for the faun, so he gets a tutorial from Emily on how to style hair properly. Their result is a grody old goblin and a big, sweet faun. I have to wonder about the tiny hat on his head and how it would stay in place on a real character when you can't glue it on. Also, this one is one of the worst cases of the body suit not reading like flesh, but rather like stuffing. And his pants are kind of awkward where they end the legs above the knees, but they look bunched and uneven rather than tailored to that fit. But the hair and paint are excellent, and the models really sell the attitude. They're good make ups. And I love the detail that the faun ate part of the map. Top look.

Logan & Adam, Naiad & Orc: They have a booksmart, fun-loving but not physically capable Naiad hanging with a dopey, construction worker type Orc. The Naiad is a water being, but they don't want to do literal fish character, rather keep it more fantasy. I think that's a good choice. During fabrication, they get behind on day one, don't get the molds done to run overnight, and that leaves them with a challenge to figure out how to complete the naiad's cowl so they can fabricate on it. Adam gets frustrated, but fortunately Logan is able to keep a calm head and figure out solutions. The fin he creates on her head from fabric and latex paint turns out great. I like her look, with the big glasses and the fringes on the face, and I think her face makeup is good, but the judges don't like it. They think she should have more water features on the face and skip the glasses because she's under water. But it's FANTASY. If she's reading books, why not glasses, too? As for the orc, it turns out very good. My one issue is it is reminiscent of Mangalores from "The Fifth Element". Still, it's pretty good. Bottom look.

Ben & Evan, Wood Elf & Minotaur: They decide on a married couple, with the wood elf being an older fun-loving woman wearing a beehive hairdo that's an actual beehive, and the Minotaur being her beefcake trophy companion. Looking at the conceptual sketches we're shown, I'm immediately put off by her outfit - some sort of turquoise jump suit combined with genre boots. I don't know what to make of that. There isn't much there to say "wood elf" apart from pointy ears and the beehive on her head. Which brings up problem two, the "beehive hairdo that's a literal beehive" has been done on the show before, and it didn't work then, either. So I'm struggling to see how this is not going to be a dud. The minotaur's outfit seems much more fitting. As I feared, the final product, the wood elf's costume doesn't work. It doesn't make sense, and doesn't read as elf or woods. The beehive in the hairdo is hard to make out at first, and the gimmick comes off slightly better than the last attempt, but not enough to sell the character. And her old age makeup doesn't look great. On the other hand, the minotaur is superb. Everything from the sculpt of the face to the paint job and choice of colors to the detail of the broken and repaired horn all play well. The eyes, in particular, blend really well and seem organic, not a model's eyes behind a mask. So this one is a mixed result. Safe?

Side note: what does it mean to "look realistic but not, like, super-cheesy"? Why is there a "but" in that sentence?

Cig & George, Dwarf and Ogre: They opt for a grumpy old lady dwarf and a gentle, dumb ogre. I'm sensing a pattern - dumb men. George decides to expose the pot belly, so he covers the suit in silicone to make a skin-like surface for painting. That's pretty neat. George decides to use silicone for the dwarf's face, which works really well. He makes a great sculpt and does a great paint job, giving a very realistic result. The ogre is also a great result. This is the belly suit that reads the most authentic. The paint job is very detailed and great. I'm a little bothered by the dwarf's weapon, a rolling pin with two cast-iron skillets tied to one end. I don't quite get that, but otherwise this set is spot on. Glen feels like the ogre is the best integration of the body suit to the character. Top look.

Winner: George & Cig. Great job.

Eliminated: This is the first time they've explicitly mentioned both weeks' results in their evaluation. And what a difference a week makes. Remember how I said that Adam and Logan were lucky bastards? The summaries this week are that Keaghlan and Melissa have not been moving forward creatively and successfully whereas the guys are getting better and better as we go. But if last week had been an elimination week, the summaries would have been that Adam and Logan had two bad weeks in a row and that stone puppet was dreadful, whereas Keaghlan and Melissa had a rough streak, but with their blacksmith's apprentice, they were finally back on track.

Stats wise, the two teams are basically even, with Keaghlan & Melissa having 1 Win early, then 3 Bottom looks in a row before a Top look, whereas Adam & Logan had an early bottom score, 2 Top looks, and then 2 Bottom looks. Both are essentially 2 good/ 3 bad. In my mind, Adam & Logan had better results this week, but including results from last week, I would say that Keaghlan & Melissa should have been the ones kept. But the judges disagreed, so the ladies got eliminated.

MacKenzie's outfit - a dress with a black torso and silver sparkly sleeves and sides. I think I'd like a little more breakup on the front, but the sleeves are nice.

Now for the stats review leading to finale.

Emily & Tyler: 3 Wins, 3 Tops, 0 Bottoms

Cig & George: 3 Wins, 1 Top, 0 Bottoms

Ben & Evan: 0 Wins, 3 Tops, 3 Bottoms

Adam & Logan: 0 Wins, 2 Tops, 4 Bottoms

At this rate, Emily & Tyler and Cig & George have about equal chance of winning this - while the first two have a slightly better record, both pairs are doing great work and neither are facing real problems. As long as they avoid going too stupid/funny. Whereas Ben & Evan and Adam & Logan are about equal in struggling. I don't know which group will be knocked off next, but it will take a real strange set of weeks for one of those two groups to beat out the others.
  #37  
Old 03-17-2017, 08:29 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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I'm really curious as to why they are doing an all stars. Why bring back people? Has the show brought about more talent in the pool and this is a way to increase skills? Give them a second chance?
The show is perpetually facing a need to keep the audience interested, and so they have to find ways to keep upping the ante, or shaking it up. Season 5 they brought back eight returning contestants versus eight new ones. For season 8, they brought back three prior winners to serve as coaches for the new contestants.

Quote:
(And now that they have done that, i would love to know where previous contestants are, not just winners or finalists but many of them.)
A couple years ago, SyFy had a different special effects show they tried out, where three of the competitors from a couple seasons formed a special effects house and were working together. I think it was Nicole Chilelli, Roy Wooley, and Eric Fox.


[quote]What's also interesting to me is how much things have changed over the years on the show, in terms of the talent. Any of these contestants would have won first, second, and maybe third season easily. Quality is just that high for technique and ability. [QUOTE]

That's one of the benefits of an all-stars show - returning contestants have been through the mill once, so they know the drill, and they've had time to hone their skills. Also, there have been some behind the scenes changes from early seasons. The first few seasons, the contestants were making all their costumes, but now those are getting farmed out so they can focus on the make ups, unless they fabricate the costume as an element of the character (i.e. the blacksmith's apprentice). Second, they used to have to run their own molds, but now if they get their molds cleaned out by the end of a day's shift, a crew comes in to run the appliances overnight for them. Those two things are big time savers for the contestants, allowing bigger challenges.
  #38  
Old 03-20-2017, 01:34 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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I still haven't caught up from two weeks ago, but I wanted to get in my comments on last week's before this weeks.

This challenge seemed like such a random grouping of elements, and I wasn't super excited about any of the final products either ... so maybe I was predisposed to that, or maybe it didn't quite click with the contestants either.

Keaghlan & Melissa, Fairy & Troll. I liked the turning into rock parts of the troll ... but that's such a small detail in a design that was lacking any big visual concept, I thought. I get how being tourists on vacation is funny, but there also seem like a lot of missed opportunities here. As has been said, the fairy didn't look at all like a fairy, and that's probably one of the easier things to do on this show.

Tyler & Emily, Goblin & Faun: I was really mixed on this. First, it's just not my thing so it was probably hard for me to be objective about it. Technically they probably did a great job, as the judges seemed really impressed. I liked the idea of making a faun with a different body type than the typical lithe faun ... but it still looked weirdly blocky to me. His expression was great, though. And I thought the goblin was generic, and that the color palette was mostly browns and earth tones -- which it seems standard for goblins, so I thought comedy would be a reason to perk it up a little. I can appreciate why it was a top look even though it didn't thrill me personally. (oh wait, I have to add, and it's already been pointed out, the faun's cap struck me as ... weird? Unbalanced on his head?)

Logan & Adam, Naiad & Orc: Like Irishman, I liked this a lot more than the judges. They clearly hated the naiad in glasses, but I thought it was cute and funny. I wonder if Logan and Adam had presented the "story" better, if the judges would have liked it more ... it's hard to tell on the show, it seemed like they hated the glasses right up front. But it was adorable to me, and is perfectly fine for a fantasy/comedy, like an urban fantasy or something for kids like Percy Jackson. I was so focused on this that I didn't pay much attention to the orc. Oh, the only other thing I would say, conceptually, is that maybe the glasses would have worked better if the naiad had included some other "real world" costume choices or accessories to show that she's a fantasy creature that is interacting with the everyday world.

Ben & Evan, Wood Elf & Minotaur: I liked the minotaur a lot (as did the judges) but I wasn't really getting where they were going with it in terms of comedy or how the characters go together. The wood elf was blah. I'm struggling to even find more to say about this one.

Cig & George, Dwarf and Ogre: Sure. The judges were duly impressed with their technical skills. Sometimes I don't always get the nuances about what the judges are seeing in the casting of the pieces, but this week, even I could tell that the silicone on the dwarf was unbelievably realistic. Wow. Again, the couple looked drab to me because of the color choices, and I agree that the rolling pin was not the best choice.

Something that struck me is how many of the teams said something like "well, we saw the bodysuit and immediately thought OLD." Four of the five female characters were old, and the only young character was the naiad, whose bodysuit was more busty than fat.

One thing I have been noticing this season is that I like Emily so much more! I had gone back and read my comments about the season she was on, and I had a lot of mentions about her age -- that while I was sympathetic that she was so much younger than most of them, I was still annoyed by how often she would freak out over little things. This hasn't really happened to any extent this season -- maybe she has more experience, or maybe working with a partner helps her stay focused.
  #39  
Old 03-20-2017, 04:14 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by delphica View Post
Tyler & Emily, Goblin & Faun: I was really mixed on this. First, it's just not my thing so it was probably hard for me to be objective about it. Technically they probably did a great job, as the judges seemed really impressed. I liked the idea of making a faun with a different body type than the typical lithe faun ... but it still looked weirdly blocky to me.
That was one where the body suit was least lifelike. I agree it was weirdly blocky, not looking like real weight. I'm not sure what they could have done better with it, though, as the suit was provided to work around, and that's really in the makeup of the suit as stuffing.


Quote:
Something that struck me is how many of the teams said something like "well, we saw the bodysuit and immediately thought OLD." Four of the five female characters were old, and the only young character was the naiad, whose bodysuit was more busty than fat.
Most of the female body suits had lumpy hips and thighs and bellies. That doesn't equate in many people's mind to healthy young people.

Quote:
One thing I have been noticing this season is that I like Emily so much more! I had gone back and read my comments about the season she was on, and I had a lot of mentions about her age -- that while I was sympathetic that she was so much younger than most of them, I was still annoyed by how often she would freak out over little things. This hasn't really happened to any extent this season -- maybe she has more experience, or maybe working with a partner helps her stay focused.
I think she's had a chance to mature and gain confidence through experience.
  #40  
Old 03-20-2017, 07:15 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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Originally Posted by delphica View Post
This challenge seemed like such a random grouping of elements, and I wasn't super excited about any of the final products either ... so maybe I was predisposed to that, or maybe it didn't quite click with the contestants either.
: : :
Logan & Adam, Naiad & Orc: Like Irishman, I liked this a lot more than the judges. They clearly hated the naiad in glasses, but I thought it was cute and funny. I wonder if Logan and Adam had presented the "story" better, if the judges would have liked it more ... it's hard to tell on the show, it seemed like they hated the glasses right up front. But it was adorable to me, and is perfectly fine for a fantasy/comedy, like an urban fantasy or something for kids like Percy Jackson. I was so focused on this that I didn't pay much attention to the orc. Oh, the only other thing I would say, conceptually, is that maybe the glasses would have worked better if the naiad had included some other "real world" costume choices or accessories to show that she's a fantasy creature that is interacting with the everyday world.
I didn't comment on the last week because, like you, I was kind of "meh" about the results. All the contestants automatically went with "big and dumb" vs 'small and feisty". They didn't really have much choice, given the pre-made body-types. But that's not going to lead to much that's original. Coupled with the earth tones of Middle Earth type fantasy, and you get a pretty drab week. Except for the vacation couple, and let's face it, they kind of missed the word "epic" in the problem description.

So, yeah, OK, there were some good dwarf makeups, and some good orc/minotaur/whatever costumes, but I would have preferred a competition that gave the contestants more latitude. Although I have noticed that the contestants are visually creative, but when required to make up stories, they go with pretty derivative or cliched backgrounds. This is, after all, why they are makeup artists and not screenwriters. Still, I wouldn't have minded seeing an anomalously smart Orc that wanted to be a wizard or a monk instead of a meat shield.

In respect to the glasses on the naiad -- not only was that a cute touch, but one would almost think that a creature that lives in water would need glasses outside of it in the same way that we need googles to see properly in water. The density of the mediums are very different.
  #41  
Old 03-26-2017, 11:04 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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Things just got shook up once again.

Step 1: for this challenge, we are merging the 4 teams of 2 into 2 teams of 4. Mackenzie let's the teams pick their partners, so they mix - Ben & Evan run over to Cig & George, which leaves Emily & Tyler with Adam & Logan. Nobody seems unhappy. I think that's probably the ideal pairing for competition's sake, to mix the two stronger teams with the weaker teams. Also, the strongest and weakest team were combined, and the two middle teams were combined.

Step 2: Announce the challenge for the week - to make a sadistic family of creepy backwoods freaks for a horror movie. They get three models to make three makeups, based upon one of two preset locations. They pick from two maps. Adam is a dick. They get an abandoned military base, while the other team gets a circus. Circus Freaks! This is a 2 day challenge.

Step 3: Rules Change! From now on, there will be no more immunity weeks, and they will eliminate individuals, not teams, one competitor a week.

Guest judge: director Marcus Nispel

Emily & Tyler and Adam & Logan: "Let's go with the most stupid and trite and hackneyed idea we can think of.""Yeah, let's do that." They decide their family witnessed a nuclear explosion (), and the father will have half his body marred by the blast. Erm. Then they propose a cute little girl who lures the victims in, and then a crazy lady mother who is really messed up, but still puts on her makeup and fixes her hair like nothing is amiss.

The team suggest using some appliance to pull the lip back - Tyler says he's done it, then he says he's always wanted to do it, so I'm a bit confused. So if Tyler and Logan are so excited by doing that, why is it Emily that they set off on that task? She can't get it to work, so they just opt to sculpt it into the facial appliance instead. Adam recognizes that the concept is bland and obvious, not creative, but nobody can get a different idea. Finally he suggests on day two that they swap the tallest and smallest models, and they make the daughter really big, which will make the father a bit small. The difficulty is they come up with that idea after they made their appliances sized to the other models. Putting the father's face on the girl means Adam has to mask her large lump of hair, so he scrounges up a bunch of appliances to cover her head.

First looks on reveal stage: yah! Definitely a scary mess. The dad makeup is troubling. There doesn't seem to be a coherent idea represented for what is wrong with him. There are a lot of random lumps but it isn't clear what they are, the color has a lot of green in it for some reason, and then the back of the head has a completely different effect of the skin shredding. It's undefinable as a visual concept. The mom, meanwhile, is horrifying. Now that's a creepy looking face. She's got pustules and lumps and rotted teeth all covered over with pancake make up. And the eyes.... That really nailed that character. The human flesh casserole is visually too confusing to me.

Then we get the daughter, who is huge and then has those tiny asymmetric pigtails, the scarring on her face, all the boils and burns on her arms. It definitely shakes up the expected, moving away from quite so trite.

During explanation, Tyler mentions they all worked on all the characters "to keep them as cohesive as possible," but they actually aren't very cohesive. The judges ding them for not having a consistent look to what is wrong with them even though it's from the same source.


Ben & Evan and Cig & George: They decide on a hydrocephalic (water head) boy in a wheelchair, the mom and dad dress him up like the ringleader and they force their victims to perform for them before they eat them. Yum. They make the mom a former strong-woman but she's old now, and the dad is a "humanzee" (human-chimpanzee looking hybrid) who is an organ grinder (because monkeys performed for the organ grinder). That's a bit more creative than the other team. For extra creativity, they want the "humanzee" to also be a "pinhead". I had to go look that up, because their sketch and mold weren't making sense to me. "Pinheads" were what they called microcephalics, people who have underdeveloped heads that the brain never grew, so the skull is abnormally low. Now it is a fact that pinheads were often called monkey people or "the missing link" because of the low brow, big jaw look. But there's a striking problem with this concept - a pinhead is by definition a small head, with the skull low and underdeveloped. But they can't take off the model's head, so their craft would have to find some creative workaround. Except they sculpt this big tall point sticking up off the top of the guys' head, so his head is actually twice as tall as normal. I don't get it.

So mom was a fire eater who got burned, then a sword swallower who poked the sword out her throat. Thus the mix of elements to mess her up, coupled with age and sagging skin where her muscles used to be. They want arm flaps made from silicone - I'm wondering how they're going to pull that off. (Hint - poorly.)

My first impression on the reveal stage: this is a bit of a mess. Especially the mom. The wig is an absolute miss, looking horribly fake. The arm gag doesn't work for me, because the flaps stick out at odd angles and only look right with her arms in one position, but change her arm position and the flaps don't look right, they're just sticking out at weird angles. I will say the face came out great - the shapes and application and paint on the face look incredibly real. However, there is a bad blend line for the appliance to her chest, and the skin on her shoulders that hasn't been addressed to make it look old. Unfortunately, her legs seem to be suffering from lipoedema, which, if you image search (and I don't recommend it), you will see they actually kinda look like that.

For the hydrocephalic boy, that is one creepy look. I think the overall result is good, the veining is great, I just am not sure about the greenish color. But otherwise, that's a hit. Then there's the monkey dad. I think the face sculpt and paint work out pretty good - his features look like distorted human features. But I still hate the pinhead element. Fortunately, they don't seem to play that up in the explanation. I do love that the organ he is supposed to grind is actually a meat grinder. I think they hit 2 out of 3.

This is a tough call for me. I think the circus is a more cohesive set. I think the flaws with the nuclear dad are worse than the flaws with the strongwoman. Her face sculpt in particular is awesome, it's just some of the other details that I don't like.

So the judges award the win as a team to Cig & George and Ben & Evan.

That leaves the other team for elimination. What's frustrating to me here is that it was Adam's idea to swap the models that made their concept more exciting, and garnered so much praise for the girl character. But he's the one who sculpted, applied, and painted the dad, and that was a mess all around, so ultimately his work was the worst on the team. Bye bye, Adam.

So now are they competing as individuals rather than teams? Because they're being eliminated as individuals0. Or do they keep the superteams for another week? I guess we will find out next week.

So with that twist, time to rate the competitors.

George: 4 Wins, 1 Top, 4 Safes, 0 Bottoms
Cig: 4 Wins, 1 Top, 4 Safes, 0 Bottoms
Emily: 3 Wins, 3 Tops, 2 Safes, 1 Bottom
Tyler: 3 Wins, 3 Tops, 2 Safes, 1 Bottom
Ben: 1 Win, 3 Tops, 2 Safes, 3 Bottoms
Evan: 1 Win, 3 Tops, 2 Safes, 3 Bottoms
Logan: 0 Win, 2 Tops, 2 Safes, 5 Bottoms

Observation 1: George & Cig and Emily & Tyler and Ben & Evan match on records because they are on teams. Duh.

Observation 2: Emily and Tyler only have 1 Bottom look, that was this week where they were paired with another team. These two teams were fairly even.

Observation 3: This win this week keep George and Cig closer to Emily and Tyler. C&G have 5 High but 0 Low, whereas E&T have 6 High but 1 Low. 6 - 1 = 5, right?

Observation 4: Logan is set to be the next to go home, unless he has a stellar week or someone has a major flub.

We need more individual results to separate the contenders, but I feel Emily is a stronger competitor alone than Tyler.

Mackenzie's outfit: a brown sweater dress with sparklies in it. I like this better than the last couple of weeks.

Oh, and for those of you who wish there was more discussion of the fabrication techniques used, you really need to check out the new SyFy series "Cosplay Melee". I will be doing a separate thread on that show, but the set up is structurally different. They take 4 cosplayers each week and they have that one episode as a challenge to win $10,000. They did much more is description of the fabrication techniques, like how one woman used warbla to sandwich over her foam to give it a smoother texture, or another woman applied bondo (car repair) to her foam to give it a smooth finish so when she painted it, it really looked like metal. I'm thinking about previous episodes here where we thought the foam still looked like foam and not rock or ice? Here's a couple techniques they could have used.
  #42  
Old 03-27-2017, 08:31 AM
vislor vislor is offline
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Irishman, thanks for the summary!

In general, we seem to agree. Interesting that we are going to individuals but that made sense or one more team is out before the finale. This will give them another five shows this season.

I wasn't happy with the pairing but it probably did make for the best drama. Adam's negativity has been wearing on me this season for some reason. Thing is, I get it. I can be outwardly negative even as I'm thinking about how to fix something or make something work. I really didn't like him being a jerk and picking the other thing. I would have loved to have seen their clowns.

As for the makeups, bland and uninspiring to me as well. Adam's idea to swap the girl and the dad was nice but that hurt the execution obviously. Again, as Irishman said, nothing that stood out.

I am curious now that we don't have teams, who between Emily and Tyler really stand out.

We did watch Melee Cosplay and not knowing anything about it, the format threw us. We were expecting to get to know them better. I will look for a thread on that!
  #43  
Old 03-27-2017, 02:41 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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I'm a little bit skeptical about the change in rules for elimination, because in practical terms, it means that the teams with fewer wins (Ben and Evan and Adam and Logan) are effectively screwed. Unless, for example, Emily or Tyler effectively takes the day off and spends their time finger painting graffiti on the models, it's going to be difficult for them to take a dive so badly that the judges would vote them off. So, if you're not on the winning team, you had a 50% chance of elimination this week.
  #44  
Old 03-27-2017, 03:36 PM
amarinth amarinth is offline
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My big question for the week was "Where/when did the Cig/Evan/Ben/George team have time to make the t-shirts with their faces on them?"

I didn't like the challenge as much this week. Three models for 4 people tends to mean that at least 1 person can't really show off as much (you tend to end up with 3 1-on-1 matches with the 4th person "helping" or 2 1-on-1 and the other two people splitting the final model) so it places someone at a disadvantage.

I also didn't really like the results that much, either - but then, this is a genre that I don't really watch/like so I'm possibly not the best judge.
  #45  
Old 03-28-2017, 05:49 PM
Cayuga Cayuga is offline
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Originally Posted by amarinth View Post
My big question for the week was "Where/when did the Cig/Evan/Ben/George team have time to make the t-shirts with their faces on them?
Cig and George have had theirs since the beginning of the season. Don't know about the other two.
  #46  
Old 03-29-2017, 02:32 PM
Finagle Finagle is offline
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Spoilers ahead, of course.



Last night's challenge was for each team to model three members of a coven who have been cursed by an opposing coven. They were told the components used to cast the curse and told to use that to inspire their creations.

Teams were Tyler, Logan and Emily vs Ben, Evan, Cig and George.

Team 1 (Tyler, etc...) went with a tree motif -- their coven members were being suffocated by willows. Team 2 originally went with a rat/snake motif but wisely switched to a "diseased rat clan" motif after wasting a day puttering around in the lab.

Despite the second team having, effectively, only two days to work on their design, they really knocked it out of the park. Their characters looked really ratty and diseased while still capturing "witchy". I personally was not as impressed with Team 1's results -- we've seen more effective tree make ups in the past. The coven looked good, but I thought Team 2 came up with a more cohesive and coherent looking set -- like something out of a very dark Ratatouille.

And....this brings up the flaw in the current team setup. On Team 1, Emily clearly had the most difficulty coming up with a character design. Her end result looked, to me, more like a blurry gargoyle than a witch. On Team 2, Evan's rat creature was the least finished, but it was pretty darned good and fit nicely in with the rest of the coven. If the judging were blind, I think Team 2 would have won and Emily would have been sent home. But Emily has a ton of wins and the judges love her. So the fix was in; Team 1 was declared the victor by a hair and Evan was sent home.

Now it's clear that Evan's witch was not complete; the first day of dithering cost the team dearly. But Emily's witch was, by far, the least impressive thing she's put out. So I think Emily squeaked by on a lifetime achievement award.

Of note: Cig's rat creature was really well done with incredibly detailed hands including rat pads.
  #47  
Old 03-29-2017, 03:23 PM
amarinth amarinth is offline
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I don't think I like the "superteam" concept.
For both groups, I think they got the "cursed" part of the challenge, but I didn't see "witch" in their makeup. I'm not quite sure how to display that (one of the myriad reasons I'm not on the show), but I don't think they hit it either.
  #48  
Old 03-31-2017, 05:44 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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This was an episode full of mixed emotions for me.

I thought the challenge was interesting, although I didn't have any clear idea that came to me right away about how it could best be executed ... and I don't think the contestants did either.

Tyler, Logan and Emily stressed me out right away, when they said that since they had three people, each one would work on one character. HOW MANY TIMES have the judges criticized a team effort for having separate characters that didn't really go together? That said, I ultimately liked all three designs, and while they didn't look like a completely unified effort, the final results looked reasonably in the same universe, I guess. As the judges mentioned, Emily's wasn't terribly distinctive, but it still looked better than the majority of stuff on Face Off over the years. Tyler's was great, and I find him to be a really nice guy, so it was great to see him so excited about his design, and the win.

Ben, Evan, Cig and George generally make me mental, but I am impressed that they got so much good work done especially after scraping the entire first day of work. I get that they look like rats. I agree with Mr. Westmore's advice, and the judges mentioned it as well, that it was a good decision to focus on one element of the curse. But for my taste, I didn't see enough hints of the other elements. Other than looking like a bunch of rat people, I wasn't getting "witches" and I wasn't particularly getting "cursed" (or at least, not that particular curse).

Based on this week alone, I could have understood either Emily or Ben leaving, although personally I preferred Emily's, and thought the Emily/Tyler/Logan team looked witchier and cursier. Overall though, Emily has been much stronger than Ben, so I am 100% on board with the decision.
  #49  
Old 03-31-2017, 09:38 PM
Kamino Neko Kamino Neko is offline
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I thought both of the teams this week overliteralized the curses they were given. Personally I'd have gone with sympathetic magic, rather than putting aspects of the ingredients in the makeup, but the judges liked them, so...

One from the Ben/Cig/George/Evan team going was pretty inevitable from the moment they started working...they obviously had no idea what they wanted, while the other three launched right into a strong idea. I was actually hoping it'd be Cig or George...I've had it out for them since the Monster High challenge. >_>
  #50  
Old 04-02-2017, 09:00 AM
vislor vislor is offline
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I agree with what people have said here. To sum up:

Missing some cohesiveness even on the good team.
No idea what superteam means.
Emily has been consistent and improved since her last time on Face Off and while we have seen one slip up cost it for the person, the judges seem to be considering the season's work, so that meant Ben.
Losing a day and getting that much work done is impressive.

I also agree with Kamino that they over-literalized the curses. Perhaps I read too much urban fantasy, but I would have liked more subtle things. Instead of the deformities, a person in a suit with a mark on them was what I wanted. This all seemed too much for me.
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