Face Off Season 3: Cyb(ernetic) + Org(anisms)
We’re down to five, and Nicole is marveling that she’s still here after being eliminated once already. Laura helpfully informs us that there are two more challenges before the finale. Sarah frets that the house is so quiet.
In order to help with the noise issue, the show then sends the contestants to a junkyard. McKenzie shows up and announces the challenge this week: cyborgs! This is their shopping period. They must find items here in the junkyard to incorporate into their final look. They are given shopping carts and told to go. Well, it’s not a trip to Mood, but I guess it will have to do.
Laura is stoked–she calls Sarah Conner her idol growing up. Meanwhile Sarah’s lack of culture as a child and Mennonite upbringing are raised again, as she claims to know nothing about cyborgs, she saw “a couple of Terminator movies once a long time ago.” (Oh dear. Does she not know Star Trek? The Borg? Hello?!) Roy has this fantastic concept: “CORE: Cybernetic Organic Regeneration Eccelerant.” (Yes, I know the word is actually spelled Accelerant, but we’ll give it to him.) This cybernetic stuff actually reanimates, not regenerates, so he’s got a cyborg who is also a zombie. It’s a cool idea, but I worry this might confuse the judges.
Once back at the workshop, Sarah is having a bit of an inward meltdown because everyone else has great ideas and she’s staring at what she brought back from the junkyard not knowing what anything is. I guess without Alana, someone needs to be melting. Once again, Derek finds himself having to listen to a insecure designer, and his face just reads “GO AWAY AND SHUT UP.” Nicole is working on this “cyborg princess” concept that looks very alien and very sexy. She complains that Roy is making annoying noises, so he brings her earplugs so she’ll shut up and let him work.
Day two and Roy is making faux football shoulder pads. Laura is questioning her concept, so she heads back to the drawing board. Glenn shows up and frowns at people.
- Nicole: He tells her the concept is cool and he’s excited to see what she makes.
- Sarah: When he asks her what her frame of reference is and she admits “none.” He scowls extra deep.
- Roy: He likes the zombie idea, but looks positively ill when he sees that Roy is considering dryer tubes for arm pieces, calling it “third grade box robot.”
- Derek: He calls the design ideas in the drawing strong.
- Laura: she can do no wrong in Glenn’s eyes, but this change of direction on day two might be bad news and he knows it.
It turns out this week, it Derek’s turn to have mold issues as his cracks as he tried to remove the clay, but he says he’ll make it work. Nicole is vacuuforming boobs for her princess. Sarah is really behind everyone else. Laura, having decided that concept number one can’t be gone back to, and concept two isn’t working either is going to take concepts one and two and smoosh them together into concept three! Does anyone else smell “unfocused disaster?”
Day of the show and all the girls are worrying they’re behind and haven’t gone big enough. Plus Sarah has an even worse problem–her chest piece won’t fit on the model, because the model already has boobs, and Sarah didn’t take that into account. The chest piece ends up riding lower on the model’s torso than it should, and it looks more like ugly clothing than something embedded in her skin. ….And then Laura’s model gets sick…and leaves the make up chair and suddenly she’s modelless with 15 minutes to go. I gotta hand it to the show. I’ve watched ten years of Project Runway, but that’s a new one! He comes back after a few minutes or so, so ok, Laura’s not screwed but still–that’s a first.
Let’s go to the make up.
Today’s guest judge is the executive producer of “The Walking Dead” Gale Anne Hurd. Apparently she did the make up on the Terminator movies, as well as Aliens. Laura and Nicole are very impressed by her presence.
By the way–Syfy finally provided the sort of photos in their look book that bloggers like myself are looking for when recapping this show–a far away “all over” shot and a close up headshot where we can see the makeup up details. Can someone page their people and tell them THIS is what we should have every week? Thanks.
Derek–His cyborg is the first to have obvious lights on it. I love the huge metal fin thing on the right side, and the brass coloring, even though I can see some people saying that’s a bit steampunk. I like it because so many times cyborgs are silver metal, and it’s cool to see one that’s a different color. But the real highlight here is the removal of the face for a single glowing oversized red eye. It takes the whole outfit up a level by removing the humanity of the model. I might just say it’s genius. Glenn says that Derek made the best use of what he found the junkyard, noting that the extension cord used to create the battery pack harness in the center of the chest is ingeniously simple. He calls the facial piece a success. Neville agrees about the face, saying that this figure has an iconic look that people would instantly remember. He notes that the toy version would sell like hotcakes (Merchandising!) Gale calls it stunning. Glenn says even in indie films no one produces makeup like that in two days, and yet here Derek has created a lead villain who could easily become an icon.
Nicole–yup, that’s a cyborg princess. The Queen of the Borg would be jealous. That’s actually my only note– the “half human” part of the cyborg is really half alien. Not complaining mind you, just stating that all the facial ridges are making the girl look alien. A hot sexy alien yes, but an alien none the less. I love how clean her work is, and the ridges on the forehead that look like little cooling vents. The paint job is excellent. So much so I forgive the mediocre wig. Nicole is extra proud of herself. Glenn says it’s the coolest thing she’s done, and he’s amazed at how much better she is since she came back. When asks she says the reason she’s doing better is she’s making what she wants, and not what she thinks they want. Ve loves the make up and says she’s camera ready. Gale would love to take this to Comiccon and calls it “elegant.” She also says that it’s so inspiring she’d love to write a treatment up for the character right now. Damn, that’s high praise. Glenn and Neville agree Nicole has the hunger and they are really glad they decided to bring her back. She wins!
Roy–Damn this is big. Roy loves big. The zombie makeup is cool if not actually part of the challenge. Roy thinks he did the best job out of anybody. Um, did you see Derek’s? Nicole’s? Sorry, buddy. The judges love the brain applique on the back of the head. The boxy piece on the back does feel a bit 3rd grade box robot and the faux football pads are silly, but the arms coming off the back of it are good. I didn’t notice the lights on the backpack box until the judges pointed them out. Ve says “holy smokes you’ve done it again!” but the part she really loves is the zombie makeup, not the cyborg features. I think it’s safe to say that without the zombie make up this piece would have been in the bottom without a doubt. Neville isn’t sure why the brain is exposed, but agrees that it looks cool. Glenn is tired of Roy though, and starts criticizing him for going too big and trying to do too much. Neville agrees that this “going big” can be a problem and also a bit tiresome and says he hopes Roy finally listens to Glenn about doing too much. Glenn gives him credit though–Roy steadfastly ignores him and his advice every week and ends up in or near the top anyway. That does say something about the strength of vision the guy is bringing to the table.
Laura–She should have just stuck to Concept One and let the chips fall where they did. This is a mish mosh. Now a mish mosh is not necessarily a bad thing for a cyborg, but not like this. This feels like she had too many ideas and failed to edit properly. Because she had so many ideas she also didn’t spend enough time thinking any of them out all the way. The green eye thing is neat, but up close it looks like a pus filled balloon coming out of a frontal lobe. There’s no photo of the backpack “power pack” but trust me when I say it doesn’t look like much of anything. Glenn tells the other judges that what they’ve got in front of them doesn’t match her concept drawings. She explains that she hybridized her ideas, but Glenn is disappointed. He says he expected more from her and that he’s “on the fence about it” which I think is as close as he can admit to hating her work. Neville has no such qualms, ripping her for not being cohesive. The chest piece doesn’t go with anything and the eyeball is pointless. He demands to know what the backpack is and says that whatever it was supposed to be, the observer certainly can’t tell–it doesn’t look like much of anything. Gail frowns that Laura just didn’t edit properly. Neville grouses it’s like she took the model, covered him in Elmer’s glue and then rolled him in junkyard stuff, it was so not thought through.
Sarah–My first reaction was “man, Sarah really should have gone home weeks ago, huh.” I mean, this just isn’t up the par with the other four. Let’s start with the disaster of a chest piece. It should look like it’s you know–the chest. Instead it looks like a tank top hanging over her shoulders. Also the face piece doesn’t look like metal. It looks like foam. The paint job doesn’t bring it to life. The bits and bobs on the chest piece are ok, but they don’t really seem to have a point. And what’s with the big blue eye-glass? You can clearly see the model’s real eye in there, so either it’s just an oversized dyed blue monocle, or she failed to hide the eye inside. “It’s not the best cyborg ever” Sarah admits “but maybe they’ll like my paint job?” Good lord–she says this every week–that she just hopes she’ll be safe. How long can you hope to just skate by as safe? Glenn grumps that none of the wires go into the skin. Neville asks about the “metal” chest piece, and she admits it didn’t go on right and that’s why it’s sitting funny. He agrees that’s a shame, but his real critique is that she just used some wires and that it when it came to junkyard stuff. She protests she didn’t know what any of the stuff was she brought back. I don’t get this excuse, why should that matter? This is fantasy, make some shit up! But the real jaw drop moment is when Gale asks a fundamental question about Sarah’s cyborg: “What organs have been replaced?” Sarah shrugs “I don’t know.” WHAT?!?! Honey, did you not know what a cyborg is by definition? Oof, that’s just embarrassing. The entire table is stunned silent for a second as they digest that even Rod and his “every face looks the same” or Alana’s whiny PITA would’ve done a thousand percent better purely because they know the material. Ve finds nice thinks to say about the eye piece out of pity. And that’s all they have for her–just pity that this girl is working blindfolded. If you haven’t seen the frames of reference–if you don’t know what a cyborg *IS*–how can you begin to compete?
It’s a bit cruel that Glenn says there’s only one bottom look tonight. I would say that Laura should have been in the bottom too, and it might have been a wake up call to Roy to listen if he was forced to see his “best thing up there” in the bottom. But Glenn can’t bring himself to put Laura in the bottom, and if he won’t put Laura in the bottom, he can’t put Roy in the bottom. So there we are. Weeks after she should have been gone, Sarah is finally out. The judges all chorus “good luck” at her as she leaves, as if they all know she’s not long for the business.
Next week–The last challenge before the finale: Fantastical Creatures Who Commit Murder!