Wednesday, January 23, 2013

'Face Off' recap: 'Heroic Proportions'

"Dick Gritty," Courtesy Syfy
BY LARISSA MRYKALO


After returning for Season Four last week, Syfy’s Face Off had the 13 remaining artists vying for the chance to have the original superhero they create in the Spotlight Challenge immortalized in a DC Comics book.

The lucky 13 woke to a note saying they were going to Geek Heaven, a.k.a., San Diego’s Comic-Con. Only this one independent challenge was on tap for tonight.

While at the Con, they met with not only the co-publishers of DC Entertainment, Dan DiDio and Jim Lee, but they were also paired up with other top DC artists for a collaboration on their creation. DiDio encouraged them to keep in mind the power and silhouettes of their characters, and Lee said they should keep in mind the area from which the hero comes and the use of bright, primary colors.

The excited contestants paired with artists such as Mark Buckingham, and Tony Daniel. Autumn’s little girl is a huge fan on comic book and she teared up thinking of how amazing it would be to have her characters featured in DC Comics book.


Day One
The models were chosen and sculpting began. Meagan was especially nervous and stressed for this challenge because she’s not a big fan of comics. Her "Freedom Fighter" creation is a defender of NYC and has the Twin Towers on his hands. Will the judges like this one? Hmmm...

Last week’s two-time champ, Anthony (with the killer sideburns), didn’t seem like he’d do so well this week. He struggled with the massive torso that he was striving to make for his lava-themed hero. Alam’s glass man was also an issue for her and the back-piece she made just turned out to me too heavy to stay on. Michael’s plague-doctor mask (like the one Zak Bagans wore in the Poveglia Island GA episode) gave him tons of trouble and just never looked right.

Day Two
The molding phase of the competition continued to be a difficult time for many of the artists. This challenge just wasn’t an easy one and even though some attained satisfaction with their work, time constraints were a big stressor. Eric Fox and House seemed the most confident. Eric F.’s 1940’s inspired cop with the pudgy belly and exposed organs showed just how "out of the box" he thinks. House’s anime-style Robot Girl had horror elements that may confuse the judges.

Day Three
Application and Last Looks Day is always tense and hectic and this challenge was no different. Did you feel a little more tense with this one too? Pieces just were not fitting. Anthony had to abandon his torso piece and go with another plan. Alam’s back piece was abandoned too. Alex had ton of catch-up work to do. At least Autumn was thrilled with her Phoenix-looking creation and Eric F. had time to make a prop gun.

Reveal
There was no guest judge tonight which was odd because you would think a DC rep would have been logical. The finished work stood in front of a mock-up of what their comic book would look like. Here are each of their names: “Elijah: Bringer of Plagues” (Michael); “Orion X” (Kris); “Solarian” (Wayne); “The Infernal Core” (Anthony); “Freedom Fighter” (Meagan); “Robot Girl” (House); “Mercury Ray” (Autumn); “Dark Shard” (Alam); “H2Ophelia” (Alex); “SilverSight” (Jenna); “ReVolt” (Katie); “Contagion” (Eric Z.); and, “Dick Gritty” (Eric F.).

After the judges took a closer look, they deemed Katie, Eric F., House, Meagan, Anthony, and Michael, the best and worst looks. The rest were safe.

The judges loved Eric F.’s entertaining “Dick Gritty” because of its style and how it compels the audience to ask about what actually happened to him. House’s “Robot Girl” was risky and unconventional but the horror-look ultimately came together and worked. They liked Anthony’s paint job and amazing head sculpt and chose last week’s champ as this week’s winner as well. Three for three Anthony! Nice job. Do you agree?

According to what I read on social media, there could have been more bottom looks for this challenge. The work wasn’t really as good as usual and fans seemed hard-pressed to pick a favorite. The losing artist tonight turned out to be Austin, Texas native, Michael (or as fans have taken to calling him, “Disco Wolverine”) for his poor attempt at the Plague Eater and that sadly crafted mask.

So what did you think of tonight’s superheroes? Are you ready for demons next week? The third episode, "When Hell Freezes Over," airs next Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on Syfy.

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