By Victor Farinelli
Hello friends and neighbors! It’s me again, here to give you the scoop on this shitstorm called Best Ink. First off, during the show, these little pop-up windows come up giving “industry slang.” One was “Skin- Tattoo Client.” What the fuck. The only time I have heard a customer called skin is never. Great. Now all these white trash wannabe scratchers are going to be calling their customers and clients “skins.” (Screen fades into dream sequence like a ‘70's sitcom...)
Dirty, biohazard filled hovel. Wall is covered with tons of flash ordered from Official Tattoo Brand™. Floor has not been mopped in over a year. Customer is outside smoking a cigarette with his buddy and taking another swig off a half empty pint of liquor. Scratcher is smoking a cigarette at his station with his bloody gloves still on and talking to his apprentice:
Scratcher: “Hey, Mikey... Can you call my 3 p.m. skin and tell him I am running a little late on these letters I have been working on for four hours? (Mumbling to himself) I think I am spelling “homunculus” right?”
Scratchers apprentice: (With surprise on his face) “What was that? You don’t check before you start?”
Scratcher: “Listen kid, real tatters who ink pro tats don’t need to check that shit. We don’t even draw shit out. We just turn on our guns and get to tattin’”
Skin... what a joke. Well, I better get this over with before I start growing out a mullet and discussing the virtues of mudflaps, Wal-Mart, and Metallica’s St. Anger.
At the beginning of Episode 1, contestants gave a brief introduction of themselves - what style of tattooing they like to do. When it came time for Kelly, she said that she preferred doing “organica.” What kind of bullshit is that? This is why we have a gazillion sub-genres of fucking music, movies, books and everything else that the Western world has a fascination with. STOP MAKING UP GOOFY NAMES FOR TATTOO STYLES, PEOPLE! Like D.J., he said he specializes in “exaggerealistic.” Oh, for fuck’s sake. I was starting to like you. Then you go and say that...
The contestants first had to compete in a flash challenge. Wait, flash challenge. That sounds familiar. Where have I heard that from... let me see... hmm... Oh Yeah! Ink Master! Way to keep it real Best Ink. With each flash challenge, the contestants actually get a prize. This week it was $1,000 cash. Each week it is going to keep going up. Whoever wins the flash challenge gets the first pick of the clients or “skins” for the ink challenge, which actually involves tattooing. For this episode, they had to spray paint a self-portrait on a Best Ink billboard, that was on the side of a parking garage sign, hanging off the side of the building. Whatever. The winner was Melvin.
(Melvin’s flash challenge self-portrait)
Now, supposedly each tattoo is supposed to have a compelling story behind it. Each week is a different theme for the ink challenge. This week it was some shit like struggle, or overcoming adversity. Why do tattoos have to have a story? Why do you have a plate of food tattooed on your head? Why not? Simple as that.
The drama this week was that Kelly and her client started arguing about how the tattoo was coming along. Kelly kept telling her she just needs to let her finish, and it will look fine. It is a turd-and-a-half. The boombox speakers look like fucking tires. The lines are fucked. It is a mess all around. I would be freaking the fuck out too! Her client eventually told her to take a hike and left.
(Kelly’s “What the fuck is going on with those speakers” tattoo)
The top three were D.J., Teresa and Derek. But there can be only one... as the Highlander says. That was D.J. I really did not like any of them. Hey, I do not have to have the tattoo.
(Teresa’s bearded lady)
(Derek’s hyena that is supposed to be fierce, but looks more like it is yawning)
(D.J.’s winning tattoo... or something)
The top three went to the lounge and got to choose who is going to be in the bottom three. They picked Kelly, Carolyn and Melvin. Kelly should have gone home. Her tattoo was horrid. Melvin’s was pretty trashy too, but at least it was semi-proportional. The head on Kelly’s pin-up was fucking huge! Carolyn’s was better than the other two, but the judges ultimately decided to send her home. I think that is because they could tell she was not going to be a drama queen.
(Carolyn’s zombie girl. Not the worse in the bunch. But them’s the breaks)
Thus ends this Episode 1. As I sit here, I think, “What have I gotten myself into?” It took me at least five weeks before I said that with Ink Master. Damn...
Best Ink Season 2 airs Wednesdays at 10pm (EST)/9pm (CST) on the Oxygen Network.
Victor is a blogger for Tattoo Artist Magazine and can be found at: http://www.facebook.com/victhortheviking.
Read more from Victor here: http://tattooartistmagazineblog.com/?s=Victor+Farinelli
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