Ink Master season 11 finale review: Did Teej Poole, Tony Medellin, or Tiffer Wright win?

Ink MasterWho won Ink Master season 11? It’s time to find out who is taking home the grand prize and if Cleen Rock One or Christian Buckingham is going to come out on top! CarterMatt is going to be here with you every step of the way as we break down the events of the finale.

The three finalists are Tiffer Wright, Teej Poole and Tony Medellin – all very different artists, but all equally great artists. As far as a final three we couldn’t have asked for a better face off (although we will seriously miss Tim and his awesome fruit shirts). In the opening part of the finale tonight, we got a brief taste as to what’s coming with the tag-team tattoos — the first thing on the night that they were going to be judged on!

The structure of the finale was as such: The jury of peers (i.e. the eliminated contestants) had a chance to vote on one of the artists to advance. Meanwhile, the second decision was coming via the judges. Basically, it means that one of the final three isn’t really going to be in contention with their back piece — even though they all had a chance to at least show them off.

The tag-team tattoos – All of them were very good, but beyond all of that we saw from Teej Poole was one of the best dragon tattoos ever on this show. All of them were strong, but we did think that Teej and Tiffer’s tattoos were the best of the two, and this is the showdown we’ve been wanting for most of the season.

After we saw all three of the tattoos, the decision went over to the jury of peers. In the end, the person who made it to the top two was … Teej! We agree that he did have the best of the three, especially since dragons are so hard to pull off.

The second artist to advance was … Tony! This meant that Tiffer was eliminated in third place. Shocking. For most of the season, we thought that he would win!

The back tattoos – We’ll admit that of the three, Tiffer’s was the hardest one to read. Yet, he also had one of the more interesting designs with the bear. Yet, his really doesn’t matter since he wasn’t in the top two anyway. Both Tony and Teej did a fantastic job here, though personally we’re fond of the fact that Teej did something so unique with the tiger / samurai hybrid.

So … who won? Tony Medellin was the winner! He did have really solid work during the finale, and this makes him the first Ink Master: Angels contestant to officially win the show. We do feel for Teej, but Tony can celebrate the fact that he worked hard and won even when nobody really thought that he was going to be able to do it.

The Grudge Match of Christian vs. Cleen – This is in some ways secondary to the actual competition, but we certainly do think that there was all sorts of hype around it. Ultimately, we did expect Cleen to win here, mostly due to the fact that he had a larger amount of space in order to work with. Both were great, though Cleen’s was perhaps a little bit more expected. We did really like that Christian did a new-school vampire-girl tattoo that went against what we expected.

So who won this final grudge-match of the season? We were off with our read most of this season and with that, we had a hard time figuring out the winner here. Oliver Peck voted for Christian, Dave Navarro voted for Cleen, and then Chris decided to go with … Cleen! Cleen is the winner of the Grudge Match in a close finish.

Related – Check out some early speculation on season 12, which hopefully will happen!

CarterMatt Verdict

This certainly proved to be a surprising finale.

What did you think about the finale for Ink Master season 11 overall? Be sure to share right now in the attached comments! (Photo: Paramount Network.)

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