Ink Master season 10 episode 2 was really the first time this season we’ve seen a somewhat-traditional episode of Ink Master featuring a Flash Challenge and Elimination Challenge — let’s just say that at the end of it there was certainly a controversial result.
Did Garrett Bisbee really deserve to be the first artist from the top eighteen eliminated from the competition? The end result of this challenge seems in some ways to be indicative of how we as viewers perceive tattoos versus how the judges do. They’re the experts and as a result of that, their opinions should hold some weight. Yet, we actually think that Garrett left the competition with a halfway decent tattoo. While it wasn’t the strongest one in the room by any means, from far away it seemed to be fairly clean and you could understand what it was. There were issues with the line work and going over some of them time and time again, but his own mentor in Steve Tefft put him in a tight spot with some of that. Steve didn’t want to lose someone on his team, and as a result of that he did everything in his power to try and help Garrett in the moment; yet, the judges didn’t seem to like how much he went back over some of the lines.
Maybe Garrett was just doomed to fail anyway, but we actually liked his tattoo more that Amanda Leitch’s, mostly because we had a better sense of what it was and we also liked how hard he seemed to be fighting for the chance to stay. Garrett was also reasonably good TV, especially since he looked like a combination of a surfer and someone who jumped into the competition straight out of Woodstock — a combination of things you rarely see on the show.
Speaking of rare things … What was with the skull pick screw-up? This is the first time we can remember that someone screwed up who they wanted to give certain tattoos to during this part of the competition. Team DJ (easily) won the first Flash Challenge, but they managed to screw up a couple of tattoo picks as Sparks got assigned one that he didn’t want to do. The blame seems to go on Matt Buck for accidentally switching them — while we’d love to think that this is some sort of mustache-twirling plan on his part to screw with people on his own team that he might’ve thought weighed them down (Matt does have the mustache for it), it probably was just a mistake. We would’ve seen a confessional otherwise like we do when people are trying to throw challenges on Survivor in order to ditch some of their own tribe members. Still, it was pretty interesting.
The Elimination Challenge itself – This was a unique concept to draw mazes on people, though we’re sure that this is the sort of tattoo that we’d want. Who wants someone trying to constantly solve a maze on their body? It was a good test for fundamentals, but also a good chance to see who was able to properly follow a challenge. Take, for example, Josh Payne — he’s a great tattooer, but also apparently so confident that he doesn’t feel the need to turn in a complete tattoo per the specifications of the challenge — he barely did a maze and figured that his work was good enough to make up for it. It was, but it caused him to not win. Meanwhile, Deanna Smith — who we were convinced was getting a fantastic winner-like edit in the first episode — struggled and fell down to the bottom three after some color issues and barely doing much of a maze, either.
The winner, surprisingly, was Daniel Silva of Team Anthony. This artist has less experience than almost anyone this season, but he’s a serious threat. He’s just naturally good at this! There are people like this sometimes and he can do things that very few artists can. Take, for example, being able to draw almost-perfect circles. That’s not something many artists can do and the only other artist that we can compare him to when it comes to this kind of steady handed line-work is Joshua Hibbard.
Sparks creates some sparks – One of our other favorite Ink Master season 10 storylines is how Sparks seems to hate everyone, and in turn how just about everyone hates him — this is a man who burned the bridge of Steve Tefft in the premiere by saying that Steve, more or less, doesn’t have passion anymore. This week, he got into a fight with DJ over his coaching that eventually led to both parties wanting him to be shipped off to another team. It’s one of the least surprising things ever — two artists with big egos and plenty of skill struggling to find some common ground. Sparks is a great artist and DJ could be a good mentor, but the two of them probably need to meet in the middle. We wonder if Sparks would actually have been better suited for Anthony’s team where he can communicate what he thinks will help in very different way.
CarterMatt Final Verdict
Ink Master season 10 episode 2 was, by and large, fun. You saw that Team DJ, despite their perceived strength, is still vulnerable in part because they’re so cocky and no one is really listening to anyone else. Going to be tough to win as a team that way. Meanwhile, you also saw Team Steve lose his first member. We’re worried about his team just because there aren’t too many contestants on it popping off the screen. We’ve got a good villain-like character in Josh Payne, some great underdogs, and also the right amount of Ink Master conflict. It’s too early to proclaim anyone the winner, and honestly we hope that we’re not able to like we’ve been able to in past seasons. Parity is, in part, what can make this show great.
What did you think about Ink Master season 10 episode 2, and do you think that the right person ended up leaving the competition? Be sure to share right now in the attached comments! Meanwhile, you can also like CarterMatt on Facebook in the event you want some more