REVIEW: Presenter Mark Richardson says he still considers the first two weeks on The Block a kind of ‘honeymoon period’ – there’s nothing too strenuous about finishing a guest room and a bedroom of children.
Which may explain why this season on The Nice Block has been pretty much devoid of angst and cheating — until now.
But that doesn’t mean judgment is going to be planned for everyone. Favorites Stacy and Adam get a crash course in disappointment when tough judge Jason Bonham awards them a measly 5 out of 10 for a ‘confused’ nursery.
And it’s last week’s “ones to watch” who take home the prize this week – $7,000 from TSB that they can use for next week’s family bathroom. Yes, it’s Chloe and Ben who delight the judges with their blue children’s room. They took Bonham’s call to heart for everyone to be “a little bolder” with their interiors.
* First Block NZ coin revealed – will winners steal a house?
* The Block NZ is back, like Heartbreak Island without the bikinis
* Cute-like cottage with surprising interior following renovation
Chloe and Ben
These two have done a good job this week. But seriously, we could have done without boring masks and minor tiffs that weren’t tiffs this week. It seems that this year’s hand-picked Block contestants are so easy-going that the producers are trying to create scenes from scratch. Sure, it’s always happened on the block, but this year it’s not working to hold our interest – despite the reduced hours, the show is screened.
But back to the blue bedroom, which looks a bit dull. It’s not exactly uplifting, but the judges are seriously impressed and say it’s “simply breathtaking”.
They love the built-in furniture – there are lockers and hidden storage. “They thought about it in a sophisticated way,” says Ferguson. “The one thing about teenagers, well boys in general, is that they can’t organize themselves. So what I love about this room is that the storage cubes are there to do the best they can.
We love the LED lighting in the shelves and along the kick plate, the pop of olive green with the blue, and the TV that doubles as artwork.
This is a room that will still suit a young adult. The only missed note other than being a bit dull? They have different door hardware than the rest of the house. It’s always a no-no with the judges. And one of the hardest things to do right.
Tide and James
With Bonham’s call for boldness in mind, Maree says, “There will be no blank walls this week. I will redeem myself.
And she and James are redeeming themselves, with a lovely terracotta and dusty pink bedroom. Judges love the two-tone effect (how easy it is to get that straight line with that laser light tool).
Bonham describes it as “quite nutritious”. But co-host Shelley Ferguson revisits something we noted last week — there are too many little bits and pieces in the room that make it hard to focus on just one thing. Less and more is the answer. But Bonham doesn’t care and he thinks it’s finished beautifully.
Night lighting on the wall is fun. Bonham raves but only gives them a 7 out of 10. Really?
Stacy and Adam
This couple had the right to choose any apartment on the block, after winning the first reveal, but they chose to stay in house number 4. And that’s probably because it will have the lowest reserve, and they can augment it with good design.
Confidence is in abundance with Stacy, but not so much Adam, who thinks flamingo wallpaper creates a feature wall. And, as everyone knows, the tough judge hates accent walls.
Stacy wins as usual, and she has no doubt that they make the best plays: “If that’s not the cutest room ever, I don’t know what is,” she boasts. But Bonham gives them a very low 5 this week, their lowest score ever. Ferguson thinks it’s worth a 7.5.
At first glance, the room looks lovely, with an understated pink, much like Maree and James’ bedroom – they even have the same wall lights. But Bonham is confused, because the work is very “mature”. He also thinks the dark wooden floor needs softening – maybe a big fluffy rug would have done the trick.
“The bench seat is great, but there’s no storage, and I think that’s a big miss,” Bonham says. He also pans the soft baby blue, which he thinks is out of place.
They both love the powder pink tongue-and-groove wall, but they agree that the proportions of the furniture look “a bit off” – small low bed, large high bench seat. It doesn’t quite work. “Get me out of this room,” Bonham shouts. But there’s nothing that can’t be improved with a more substantial bed.
Quinn and Ben
Again we see blush and pale terracotta tones put to good use. Ben paints a mountain mural on the wall and it’s kind of fun, but it’s a feature wall…and Bonham loves it. Phew. Oh, but a few minutes later he says “enough of the feature walls”.
Both judges think they could have taken a pale version of one of those colors and wrapped it around the room.
The couple changed their choice of rug and opted for a much lighter tone, which works perfectly in the room. And their bench seat is upholstered in a fantastic 30s-style floral fabric with a matching bolster cushion.
There is a large mid-century style light fixture with multiple lights (15) which we think looks completely out of place in a small bedroom – it’s the sort of thing you would put in a living room. But the judges love it. Please disagree on that one. (Ferguson is “obsessed” with statement lighting.)
Chloe and Ben pass with an 18 out of 20; Quinn and Ben come in second (huge jump) with 15.5; Maree and James score 15; and Stacy and Adam languish until 12.5.
Interestingly, everyone finished on time, and no one was criticized for sloppy work – this must be a first, but that could all change next week as it’s family toilet week .
- This is not a one horse race
- Judge Bonham is back somewhat inconsistently
- The rearranged theme melody is better, but is that why the whole show seems less lively?
- Or is it because these candidates are all too good for the job?