The contestants have been picked and have moved into those four ugly, hideous terrace houses for the next 8 weeks. Tonight, they finally begin to deuglify them! What does this show have in store for us this week?
We start with a recap of the previous week’s events which decided that Jenna & Josh, Polly & Waz, Katrina & Amie and Tania & Rod would move on.
For some reason, the ‘key and door’ challenge was made up to be some sort of game changer. All the challenge determined was who got first dibs on the house of their choice which would have happened in some form or another anyway.
So the show starts with Scott explaining that the contestants should have been careful what they wished for as we get a dramatic look at the contestants moving into their luxurious abodes. The image of Jenna & Josh standing out in the backyard (which looks like a Romanian slum) just sums up the job perfectly.
In big letters that come onto the screen, Scott reveals that ‘the game has changed’. Seriously, is this just a promo, or the actual show?
Finally we get a preview of Shelley Craft’s role in the show as we take a look at her challenges that will take place on Tuesday nights.
There’s a brand new judging system as well, getting a score out of ten on a few aspects of their house. And to cap this all off, there’s a twist that will blow the game apart! Be careful Nine; better deliver this said ‘twist’.
To be honest, the first part of this episode is just a massive preview that looks more like one of those dodgy sneak peaks and it doesn’t really help with the smoothness of the episode but it does give us an insight of some of the attitude’s these contestants will show when they are put in stressful situations.
It amazes me that the opening titles don’t roll until 4 minutes into the show; definitely showing signs of time filling.
We return to the events of last week’s Friday episode where the contestants enter the house (I actually thought they had done this before the opening credits). In house three, Katrina & Amie have entered to find a construction site, not a house.
These ocker girls begin the tour with Katrina uttering a Kath & Kim line to describe the house- ‘noice, unusual, different’- definitely loving the humour.
They look around quite shocked at their surroundings and make funny sarcastic comments that crack me up;
KATRINA: ‘Nice floorboards (trips over a floorboard)’
AMIE: (in dilapidated kitchen) ’This is the kitchen no doubt!’
What is most surprising is the fireplace in the supposed kitchen!
Meanwhile in number one, Jenna & Josh move into their house which is no better. Their reactions are glummer than those of Amie & Katrina.
Josh comments that the couple would love to own a double frontage house like number one, however they have a job to do before getting this one up to living standard.
They find that the back wall of the house is in fact the outside wall. They push it in to reveal the backyard; the Romanian slum as I call it. It has holes everywhere from where the house was before. Half a wall has been left undemolished and it just looks helpless.
Meanwhile, Tania & Rod move into house four. As Rod explains, it has a very unique frontage and seems interesting. But when they go inside, they realise this house actually looks like it is about to collapse; half the bloody house is missing! The back door is nearly off its hinges and their backyard; well they can’t go outside safely that’s for sure. This looks like the only house where NO room is recognisable.
The good news is their floor isn’t too bad and they can start on it straight away. Also, they have a mattress for a bed to work with.
Now for the least experienced renovators, Polly & Waz, they get house two. As they lost Friday’s challenge, they didn’t get to pick this house, they had to settle for it but it might not be the worst of the bunch.
They go inside to see a wet brick wall held together by glue that is dripping off the side of the wall. Like Tania & Rod, they see a stamp saying ‘week one’. They head into the other rooms and comment on the stench of the house. They are expecting to see something dead it is that bad. On the constructive side of things, the house is in tact at least; just the individual elements suck in their own right.
After a break, we get the back story of Polly & Waz which, coupled with Lazy Song by Bruno Mars, was quite sweet. It didn’t run for long before we move back into the events of day 1. In house three, Katrina & Amie are still gawking over some of the half finished rooms and the smells of the house. They still laugh as they look at asphalt that looks like ‘poo’. It’s quite funny to see, but these kindred souls look like they can break pretty easily.
In house four, Tania & Rod are having conflicting predictions of the house. Tania is happy that it is a big space and has a lot of things to work with but Rod is a bit thrown by it all. He is happy that the under construction rooms have new building elements to it.
At Polly & Waz’s house, the feeling is uniform, it will be a HUGE and horrible job.
To the youngest couple, Jenna & Josh, they seem to like some of the wardrobes and the little features of the rooms.
Katrina & Amie have been through all their rooms and realise there is no bathroom or toilet (Amie seemed to go on about the loss of a bathroom more than the loss of the toilet) however going around the corner, they find a shed with a muddy, foul and disgusting toilet & bathroom.
The teams has two sheds however, one for the amenities and one for tools.
Back at their houses, they also find things like beanies, jumpers (courtesy of Mitre 10 by the look of it), phone’s, drills and on top of everything else, laptops, vouchers and fridges!
The teams go through their vouchers before they begin the cleanup. Each team must now get rid of the rubbish, cabinets, fireplaces, rugs, carpet etc that they don’t want.
In itself, this is quite a job however Jenna & Josh are using the carpet to make a rug and the paper for the wall painting.
Now for a weird scene, Polly & Waz going through ‘The Block’ website to see the profiles of the other couples. Coupled with a few back stories, it is just a huge promotion of the website however it’s funny to see the couple gawk over the experience of some of the other teams.
The contestants now get ready for bed and they record a video diary for us before going to bed for day 2.
When we return, we get the back story of Tania & Rod about their renovating dreams. We also look at Tania & Rod’s lives on a construction site and their hobbies.
The sun rises for Day 2, the contestants are woken with a knock. Katrina & Amie are less than impressed to wake up as they talk about the ‘Hilton’ or something.
In their week one room, Tania & Rod are sipping coffee as Rod nearly falls through the floor! They plan their job as Katrina & Amie have a shower. When Amie comes back from the shower, she is unhappy to see the other teams looking at her in just a towel.
At 9PM, council noise restrictions are lifted and it’s time for work. The on site construction workers come around to put in some windows.
Amie & Katrina are still removing things from their week one room and they are a little bothered by how heavy some of the things they have to remove including the stove which Josh helps them with.
Polly is on the phone trying to find a builder but she nearly breaks down when she can’t find anything. Waz tells her it will be ok, they can try it themselves!
The construction workers arrive at Tania & Rod’s house with their windows while Polly & Waz finally find a builder and are over the moon when they find out the builder can come today!
We get a back story (a funny one at that) of Katrina & Amie before we return to the events of day 2. Back on the block, the sisters are trying to remove a cabinet (how much stuff do they need to move) and yet again yell the words ‘we need a man’. Luckily, their builder comes and helps them move their cabinet before another builder shows up! How many builders do they need but Katrina didn’t want someone coming in telling them they’re up ‘sh*t creek’. With two builders, there are two opinions but they offer some advice to the confused Katrina & Amie.
In the end, they convince the sisters to remove a fireplace, something they did want. At Polly & Waz’s house, they have a fireplace that actually looks really nice.
Polly & Waz’s builder arrives and answers some of their most important questions; and there were many questions. They begin by knocking down the wall paper to start over, a job that is easy for the inexperienced pair.
Back at the sister’s house, three MORE builders have turned up and they are all deliberating on what to do with the week one room. It’s quite funny to see the sisters in this predicament.
Tania & Rod haven’t got a builder right now, however Rod, an experienced builder, begins on the room by removing the floor however with council restrictions quickly approaching (3pm), they have to hurry.
When 3pm Friday hits, tools are done for the weekend as council restrictions come into place. Scott comes in to the sister’s house which is now void of the builders and brings some flowers for Amie with a message from her husband Josh. It is their anniversary.
With the work finished for the week, the room has been stripped back and it looks clean at least, but no where near finished!
We get a cheeky look at Jenna & Josh’s back story which looks like quite an interesting one. We are back for day 3 at house three; Amie & Katrina remake their design plan as Jenna & Josh show for lights at the shops.
The day doesn’t start well as Josh dings the brand new car and Tania & Rod are conveniently on scene to give him a bit of flack for it.
Katrina & Amie are in the car driving around and the funny comments from the two girls just keep on flowing. Back at the accident site, Rod is still giving Josh a bit of a hard time for the crash.
At the end of the day, Scott is cooking a barbecue complete with beers as the happy family toast in a very lovely scene of togetherness with Birds of Tokyo playing in the background. Scott tells them that they are a happy family (even joking around about Josh’s Corolla)… until tomorrow! The music stops dead as we head for an ad break. Ooo the announcement looks juicy!
As Day 4 arises, it’s Monday and the council noice constructions go out the window. Katrina has the builders working like crazy as they have a bit of breakfast. So how much of the room do the contestants HAVE to renovate; or do the builders do it for them while they all sit back and relax? I’m guessing they just do the painting and the furnishings.
At house four, revisit Rod’s near fall through the floor as the plasterers and painters arrive. At Josh & Jenna’s house, they are measuring up stuff before Scott tells all the contestants to go to Carpenters Lane in Collins Street.
They all stop work and go over to see what is there and they meet the wonderful Shelley Craft. She tells them that she will be hosting the challenges. The contestants will play for money and this week, they are playing ‘run for your money’.
There’s a board game sitting on the table. Shelley moves a piece around the board telling them as they move their piece around, they must go to the destination picked and find a big red house statue. Each red house is worth $5,000 in cash. But there’s a twist, the first couple with 5 houses will not only win $20,000, but the master key to ALL four houses!
The winners can move into ANY house on the block! WHAT, that IS ridiculous! These contestants have just started and there might already be a game change.
Well, very impressive episode first up as we move into the usual format and that HUGE twist at the end a very big enticer to return!
I wasn’t too impressed however, with the beginning of the episode. It was very choppy and at times I was confused as to whether it was a promo, or a sneak peak or the actual real time events. I was shocked when the title sequence finally came on!
It was also a bit repetitive at times; showing the contestants ‘move in’ about three times in one episode; it definitely wasn’t a good look.
Content wise, this show is great thanks to those sisters. Their quotes are brilliant and one of them may just become a staple in culture hereafter (maybe). All in all, I just cannot wait for the contestants to begin to crack (although Polly is well on her way) and much closer to now, I can’t wait for tomorrow’s challenge.
Courtney’s Verdict: 8.8/10