‘Ink Master: New Year’s Ink’ review: Joshua Hibbard, Gentle Jay, Al Fliction, Cee Jay compete

Joshua Hibbard Ink MasterJoshua Hibbard may not have won “Ink Master” during his two stints on the show (although he may have won “Ink Master: Rivals” if he hadn’t been in breach of contract and booted from the show), but he’s back tonight for a very special edition of “Ink Master” called “New Year’s Ink” where he will be competition against former contestants Cee Jay, Gentle Jay and Al Fliction for a $10,000 grand prize and redemption.

1st elimination tattoo: For the first challenge they are being tested on adaptability and ingenuity and they will be doing cover ups. Gentle Jay gets the power to pick all of the canvases from a random skull pick and one of the canvases wants a tattoo covered up on his skull (and Jay gives that one to Al Fliction). Joshua’s canvas wants a tattoo covered up that’s very close to her butt (difficult placement) and Cee Jay is getting a tattoo that will have lettering in it (which is interesting since that’s what sent her home the first time around). The judges didn’t really like anyone’s tattoos, but they gave the win to Gentle Jay and we lost Al Fliction.

2nd elimination tattoo: This tattoo is being judged on finesse and saturation as they tattoo permanent reminders of New Year’s resolutions on the canvases. Gentle Jay is handing out the skulls again and saddles Joshua with a rib piece – but of course he manages to change the location of the tattoo (hasn’t Gentle Jay watched Joshua do this a million times over?). Gentle Jay really did his best to get Joshua’s canvas to switch her tattoo back to the ribs and was holding up a sign telling her to do it when Joshua wasn’t looking, but she stuck with Joshua’s change (which was the right thing to do). Joshua’s tattoo of the flower was easily the best tattoo of the day (and the judges agreed), and we lost Cee Jay… in a ball of flames. She told Oliver she hates his shirt, that Dave wears too much make up and said that they are 87% right about their negative critiques – it was such an odd elimination.

3rd elimination tattoo: A Joshua and Gentle Jay final two is probably a best scenario for this “Ink Master” special (this makes for good TV). For the final tattoo they are designing a symbol of celebration and are being tested on color theory and composition. Joshua gets to assign both canvases and gives who he thinks is a difficult canvas to Gentle Jay. Joshua won this by a mile and after competing on this show for two full seasons, it’s nice to see him finally get a win.

Like “Merry Ink”, this “Ink Master” special brought us everything we love about the show in a bite size portion. We had some of our favorite artists back in the ring, gorgeous tattoos, smack talk and of course our panel of judges giving some good critiques and as usual making us crazy. We love these specials and hope that Spike continues this tradition going forward. Episode Grade: B+

If you missed the news, “Ink Master: Rivals” contestant Emily Elegado, won our CarterMatt 2014 Best Reality Star of the year category as voted by you, our readers. Check it out over at the link here.

If you are looking for more news on “Ink Master” then head over to the link here where you can check out previews, reviews, interviews with eliminated artists (Caroline Evans, Elton “LT” Duarte, Jayvo Scott, Tim Lees, Ryan Eternal, Robbie Ripoll, Ty’Esha Reels, Angel Bauta, Julia Carlson, Emily Elegado, Joshua Hibbard, Don Peddicord, Aaron Is, Cris Element and Erik Siuda) and podcasts all about the show (or head here if you want to download our podcasts from iTunes).

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