When Ink Master season 9 episode 9 airs, there are going to be big stories for both Ulyss Blair and Tommy Helm.
Let’s start with Ulyss of Allegory Arts, given that what’s transpiring to him is probably going to be a subject of conversation. After all, in the preview for the episode next week you see him kneel down in the midst of some sort of sharp pain during the tattoo critique. Is he okay? Based on the fact that he’s still around on social media, it seems so. Don’t worry about him in that sense, but do worry about whether or not this impacts his future on the show. This is a tough competition and you’re working super-long hours. There’s also very little getting away from the rigors of the game, including the lack of sleep and constant focus on the next challenge. It’s stressful when you’ve got a lot on the line. This season isn’t about just representing yourself; it’s about bringing your shop to light and getting your business to the next step. Sure, there’s a cash prize at the end, but it’s hard to think about that in the moment.
As for other notable moments to watch, the preview also suggests that you’re going to be seeing the return of season 1 runner-up Tommy Helm, one of the best tattoo artists to never win on the show and a guy who’s even had his own show on Spike. He’s not someone who needs to be here, but there’s obviously something about the competition this season that made him want to come back. He’s representing his Empire State Studio and bringing with him one of the shop’s notable artists in Marvin Silva. He’s got a ton to prove this season, but it begs the question as to whether or not someone who missed this much of the competition really should win. It’s not Tommy or Martin’s fault, but this is not an issue that the show got into two seasons ago when Anthony Michaels won and everyone in the final three had been there for the majority of the season. There were good artists who showed up at the end, but it was hard to get attached to them.
For those wondering about the whereabouts of Cleen Rock One, he and Aaron Is are going to be on the show in two weeks, which will mark the end of the road for all of the returning shops. We’re at the moment mostly surprised that there are still five newbie shops in the game: Pinz and Needlez, Classic Trilogy Tattoo, Allegory Arts, Unkindness Art, and Artistic Skin Design. They’ve been able to hold on and outnumber many of the veterans this season, but with better artists comes more of a challenge.
As of right now, we do still think that Old Town Ink is the favorite since they haven’t really been in much danger; yet, Artistus Skin Design upped their game this week, Pinz and Needlez have a pretty good edit, and it’s hard to bet against either Tommy or Cleen based on their history.
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Be sure to visit the link here! Just remember that we’re going to continue to have coverage of the show the rest of the season. (Photo: Spike.)