Season seven of the SyFy reality series Face Off began on Tuesday and it did not take long to get at least one viewer hooked on prosthetics. Makeup accessories aside, the 16 contestants were also an addictive bunch, talented and a little shook up at the news that they were not really on the show yet.
They were all told that this, episode one, was the last audition.
This last minute bit of news surprised some, panicked others and one, Keaghlan Ashley, seemed to take it in her stride – when she heard about the last minute changes, she said, “Oh dear.” Apart from saying this, quite calmly, she never stopped working on her model and concept.
Speaking of concepts, this week’s was “Life or Death.” There were two rows of models with tables, makeup and a box with a surprise element for the artists to use. White, equalled life and black equalled death. The contestants had to make their choice and then get stuck in.
At least two hopefuls were rattled by this change from the start. However once the shock wore off, most stayed quite focussed despite another last minute “deviation.”
Once the artists decided on their character and concept, and actually started applying the makeup and costumes, McKenzie Westmore stopped everyone as a table with more accessories was wheeled onstage.
There were 16 items, each with a contestant’s name on it. These were to be used on their models. This was yet another “Oh dear,” moment for Keaghlan and cause for almost major panic from others. The Face Off hopefuls were getting stressed at yet another game changing addition and this was after they had used their prosthetics and they were hooked into a particular concept/design.
The boxes by the models contained the prosthetic pieces which each makeup artist was required to use on the creation. Some were extremely useful and others a tad confusing for a few of the contestants.
The surprise guest on Tuesday’s show was horror icon Robert Englund who, apart from being famous for playing Freddy Kruger, has been in more horror films than Carter’s got little pills.
Englund gave the hopefuls some tips from the performer’s point of view. Stating that the more the makeup artist’s used the actor’s face in their design, the easier it was for them to “act” with the prosthetics on their face.
He also mentioned that it helped the actor to get into character. After what seemed like too short a time for anyone to create a design, let alone manufacture one, the artists were told that time was up and their creations were ready to be judged.
A quick word here about McKenzie Westmore. This lady appears to be the perfect presenter/host of this type of show. This is over and above her obvious family connection to a makeup legacy and legend. Ms. Westmore treats the artists who are voted off with compassion and a degree of kindness that is missing from other reality contest shows.
By the end of the show, two of the hopefuls in Face Off were voted out and a few were praised for their work. All of the creations were fantastic and viewers should have been hooked on prosthetics after the episode finished. Hopefuls to watch for? Keaghlan Ashley and that cake decorator Dina, who “thought outside the box” for her creation. Face Off airs Tuesdays on the SyFy network.
By Michael Smith