Ink Master: Angels review: Did Jose Rosado defeat Kelly Doty?

Jose Rosado vs. Kelly DotyInk Master: Angels episode 3 is probably the most interesting one we’ve seen so far, largely because of the Jose Rosado – Kelly Doty showdown. It was the closest battle that we’ve seen between two artists who clearly know and respect the heck out of each other. Jose is also probably, pound for pound, the best contestant on Ink Master: Angels through three episodes.

Ultimately, this is why we’re super-bummed that he is not guaranteed a spot on season 10 after all this. Can’t there be a wildcard round or something for the guy? He proved himself to be not only technically proficient over the course of the episode, but he took chances and played around with a number of different styles.

Put this into perspective some of what we saw here — Jose is an artist who specializes in black and gray; yet, he faced off against a fearsome opponent in Kelly and did a full-color tattoo on a guy’s throat. HIS THROAT. Seriously. This is one of the gutsiest things we’ve seen on any Ink Master show, and his tattoo looked really fantastic at the end of it. It was so fantastic that the Angels actually picked him over Kelly! (For the record, we do think that Kelly had an amazing tattoo — we’d probably favor it were it not for what Jose accomplished in terms of the placement.)

This episode did do a good job of validating the format that we were a little unsure about the first two episodes. Our principal concern was that the Angels would always pick their fellow Angel and the crowd for the final challenge would side with the hometown hero. Yet, here it was the Miami audience who, along with his fellow competitors in Mel Verspertine and High Noon, cost Jose the win. We are still sad that he didn’t come out of this with a spot and will be for quite some time.

One suggestion if there’s another season

Why not use the Ink Master alumni more? We’ve praised through two episodes the cameos from other artists, and we’re starting to think that the show would benefit from being able to find more of a use for some of them. In the first episode, for example, you had a cameo from Joey Hamilton and that was it. Tonight, you had one from Tatu Baby. Why not have Tatu Baby be a judge in the first competition alongside the Angels? She can give more context on the city and potentially the artists rather than just a “hey, I live here” cameo at the start of the hour. They don’t have to sway the decision so much as just offer up more insight on the geography and culture of that community.

CarterMatt Verdict

Ink Master: Angels is a very much an enjoyable show through three episodes, but we do hope that they shake up the format somewhat. For example, it seems like the judges always miraculous turn up to announce a decision in the middle of the contestants arguing with each other. Allow the work and the personalities to shine through and the show can get even stronger.

Do you think that the Angels, the public, and the other contestants made the right choice tonight? Share below!

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