'Face Off' recap: 'Subterranean Terror'

Westmore with Schell

After the devilish episode last week, This week’s episode of “Face Off” took the remaining 12 artists to new levels. They gathered at the desolate Glendale Utility Substation to learn about their Spotlight Challenge for week four. Their clues for the challenge lie beneath in the substation’s dark tunnels. Let’s dig a little deeper ...

Spotlight Challenge
The task for this week’s first individual challenge was for the artist’s to create a subterranean creature of their own by gaining inspiration from one of the special rooms they discover in the tunnels.

Special guest judge was concept artist, Jordu Schell (“Avatar,” “Hellboy”) and he suggested considering a pale or eyeless creature due to the darkness in which they live. Also, the believability of the creature should be very important.

As they descend into darkness, six rooms are discovered and the artists choose their inspiration: Room One-”Kelp and Sea Life” (Alana and Tate); Room Two-”Tentacles and Ink” (Scott and Roy); Room Three-”Toxic Waste and Bones” (Eddie and Lyma); Room Four-”Chains and Electrical Panel” (Adolfo and Frank); Room Five-”Broken Door and Hair” (Laney and Miranda); and, Room Six-”Scratches and Chains” (R.J. and Laura).

After they use the Design Phase to sketch their concepts, they head to the lab for Day One of the challenge.

Day One
Five and a half hours allowed the artists to choose their models and begin sculpting. A few even started and finished their molds. Adolfo is making a prisoner who was made stronger through his electrocution; Laney uses Alana’s back as a model; Roy created a gigundo (not a real word but it’s my recap) octopus; and R.J. planned on making a creature with the ears of a bat with the essence of a mole and armadillo.

Speaking of moles, it seems to be a popular creature inspiration and Miranda ain’t too thrilled about this fact. Laura and R.J. also dreamt up mole creatures and she considered re-starting her design. It’s a subterranean creature...moles are gonna pop up! So is the word “mole” to this week, like “whimsical” was to last week?

Michael Westmore arrived for his advice walk through and he spread his wealth of knowledge. He suggested Roy use a two-by-four to help with his massive octopus design and for Scott to beef up his octopus’s neck. Did you notice that Roy got a “that’s what she said” joke in there related to the largeness of his creation. I noticed. Poor Roy bit off more than he could chew though.

Day Two
So yeah, Roy’s octopus. No bueno. During the molding process, he choose rigid poly-foam instead of the squishy stuff (not the technical term). It’s a disaster and it ends up near the dumpster. The rest of the competition is spent trying to salvage his design despite losing 90% of it.

Laura goes more for a rat look versus mole because of Miranda and R.J.’s similar creatures. Best part? She shaved down a pool noodle to make the tail! Rad awesome.

Adolfo showed confidence in this challenge until his paint job came out too orange for his liking. Roy described his new squid design as a “crap sandwich”...does it come with chips and a pickle? You're hungry now, aren't you?

Day Three
It’s Application Day and Last Looks and the lab bustled with frantic fabulousity.

Roy got lucky with how well his squid tail looked, Scott mended his torn cowl, and Laney utters the gem “I need to add the cockroaches to my creature’s wounds.” I love this show.

After Last Looks flies by, the artists send their subterranean monsters to meet the judges.

Joining the usual judges (Glenn, Ve, and Neville) is Jordu Schell. They take their close looks and I heard the words “Fruity Pebbles” used to describe Scott’s speckle-headed human-octopus hybrid. Jordu thought Frank’s toothy dude was “bitchin” and Adolfo’s electrocution guy was too “masky.” But can we talk about Alana’s straightened hair for a sec here? Looking good, girl, but I hardly recognized you!

The safe ones for this challenge included: Eddie; Alana and her cool hair; Tate; Lyma; and R.J. and his artichoke-headed bat/mole/armadillo. The bottom looks were: Roy; Adolfo; and Scott. Top looks were: Frank; Laura; and Miranda.

Frank made a "ton of intelligent design choices" and it was one of Jordu’s favorites. Laura’s rat design was "unique and cool" and Jordu loved the big hands. But it was Miranda’s mole creature that blew the judges away with its great design, sculpt and professional paint job. She won ... again. That’s three out of the four challenges. She and Anthony from last season need to hook up!

Roy was spared, despite his disaster. I think despite having to judge him on the work he put in front of them, the judges know just how damn talented he is. Unfortunately, Adolfo was eliminated for his orange mask-y creation. He's a sweetie and I liked his hat. He’ll keep on keepin’ on until his dream is achieved though!

Next week, the eleven will be challenged with creating a Mother Nature goddess. Watch “Mother Earth Goddess” on Syfy, next Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET.