Wednesday, February 27, 2013

'Face Off' recap: 'Howl At The Moon'

Kris & Wayne's Neptune Wolf
Courtesy Syfy

After last week's episode, the eight remaining contestants had two monstrous challenges in this episode of Syfy’s Face Off . The gang laments the departure of Alam and gaze upon Eric Fox’s magnificent Mohawk, then they ventured out to a farm for their Foundation Challenge.

Zombie Challenge
The artists faced their most difficult immunity challenge in Face Off history. They were greeted by hostess, McKenzie Westmore and Executive Producer of The Walking Dead, Gale Anne Hurd who informed them that they would be doing a zombie make-up. Easy enough, right? When the models, all 80 of them, burst through a barn door, things got really scary. Was Sophia in there this time, too?

Teams of two were chosen and they had two and a half hours to complete 20 make-ups: Eric F./Wayne; Meagan/Anthony; Kris/Autumn; and Eric Z./House. Hurd explained that when working on a show like TWD, quick but thorough make-ups need to be completed on several extras.

Autumn was excited to work on zombies because she’s from Pittsburgh, the birthplace of zombies (obviously referring to Romero’s Night of the Living Dead). House explained that he has done hundreds of zombie make-ups so he was feeling confident. Overall, the challenge looked like an assembly line of folks getting splattered with gore.

At the end of the challenge, the top teams were House and Eric Z. for their great attention to detail; and Anthony and Meagan for making their zombies look like they were all in the same show and paying attention not only their fronts, but also their backs (unlike Autumn and Kris).

Immunity was given to Meagan and Hurd expressed, "You can start work on The Walking Dead tomorrow!" This was huge for Meagan since she’s been struggling in the Spotlight Challenges the past couple of weeks.

Spotlight Challenge
Since the Foundation Challenge was so big, the 19 hours over three days in the lab seemed to fly by in this episode. The details of their task was revealed during a full moon in the woods. The full moon is known for its power and associated with violence and ... werewolves. The twist is, since all of the planets in our solar system have moons, the challenge involved creating an original werewolf that might live on a moon of the planet the team chooses.

(Side note: This kind of reminds us nerds of Marvel Comics' Man-Wolf aka John Jameson, who went to the moon, found a mystical ruby and became a sci-fi werewolf. Just sayin')

ANYhow, four teams of two were pre-chosen and they selected their planets: House/Meagan (Mars); Eric Z./Autumn (Jupiter); Eric F./Anthony (Saturn); and, Wayne/Kris (Neptune).

They were given some time to get inspired and do their sketching before heading into the lab for sculpting and application. Anthony was excited about his and Eric. F.’s Saturn design and planned on having it walk backwards. Putting these two huge visionaries together may have seemed like a cool idea, but will their grandiose ideas be a success or just cause trouble?

The biggest issue in this episode came from the contention between seemingly meek Eric Z. and bossy Autumn. He originally didn’t like the pig-like sculpt that Autumn created, and modified her work. Autumn was not pleased. At one point, Eric Z. even had to step-out and take some deep breaths to recover from the tension. Overall, Autumn stayed pissy throughout this challenge.

House was paired with immune Meagan and was pretty stressed out about the fact that if things go wrong, it all falls on him. He was overwhelmed with all the tasks he took on but when the head did not fit the model, he recovered nicely.

Wayne and Kris worked really well together and showed a lot of confidence. Anthony and Eric F., no surprise, bit off more than they could chew and time wasn’t really on their side. Anthony even expressed that it didn’t look very good with everything on but then went on to say that he was proud of the work he and "Foxy" completed.

Four very different werewolves appeared before the judges. House and Meagan’s "red-toned astronaut that got attacked on Mars and is mid-transformation" werewolf was a hit with the judges who could tell there was a back-story as soon as they saw it. Fox and Anthony’s massive winged creature was no doubt a massive undertaking, but the head looked like a big Halloween mask and the concept didn’t work.

Wayne and Kris’s blue-toned, long-snouted wolf from -218 degrees celsius Neptune wowed the judges and Glenn praised the amount of professional-looking work they did in such a short amount of time. And then there was Eric. Z. and Autumn’s stone-faced Jupiter wolf than was designed to withstand the strong gravitational pull of the planet. Basically, the judges hated it and Glenn called it a travesty.

The top teams tonight were House and Meagan, and Kris and Wayne. In the end, the judges chose Kris for the amazing work he did on the Neptune werewolf.

Bottom teams were therefore, Anthony and Eric Fox, and Autumn and Eric. Z. The judges were clearly disgusted at the dysfunctional dynamic that went on between Autumn and Eric, and Glenn even said he would have fired them both if they were working for him. Autumn’s behavior and poor work on the design that was ultimately hers, led to her elimination this week. She did not go out graciously either.

Did they make the right decisions tonight? Only seven are left and next week’s episode will result in a dreaded double elimination. The episode, "It’s Better in the Dark," will air on Syfy, Tuesday, March 5 at 9 p.m. ET.