Did this battle have a controversial finish? Maybe, but we’d say that there were a couple of interesting decisions made along the way. In the Angel Face-off between Nikki Simpson and Nickole Ashlock, this was one of those few occasions in which we could understand either party being declared the winner. They both delivered really strong, really interesting tattoos that conveyed a strong emotional message. There were technical mistakes with each and we understand why it was a split vote between the three parties voting.
The big reason to be bummed about Nickole not making it further is that if there was someone who really needed that bump with being a part of Ink Master, it is most likely someone like her. She is an artist who wants to do right by her parents and help them after her mother has gone through a really difficult, tough time with some medical ailments. We know that she’s done her family proud through what she brought to this episode and hopefully, her making it as far as she did will enable her to get some more business outside of the show.
If there was a qualm that we had in some of the decision-making tonight, you can argue that Chad Newsom made a strong case to enter the face-off himself thanks to what he brought to the table in the showdown with Nickole. While he ventured very far from the theme of traditional blue angel faces, he did something that was artistic and incredibly cool to look at. This is where the difference between artistry and technique really come into play. We would say that, by a pretty decent margin, the more creative of the tattoos was Chad’s. Yet, Nickole was the artist with slightly better technique (per the judges critique), and with that in mind she had a chance to move forward.
In terms of breaking the formula Ink Master: Angels this week didn’t do a whole lot else different. Yet, we do appreciate how all three artists in Memphis were solid and delivered some interesting work, and beyond that we really enjoyed seeing Chad compete with his significant other in Bri making it a fairly unique experience. That was especially true when he admitted that he was actually rooting for her to advance over him, largely because he felt she deserved that opportunity and he really didn’t want to hurt her.
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