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Halloween Wars

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This recap just reminds me of why I got hooked on this show in the first place. I still like the show very much, but the quality of designs and detail in recent years is zilch compared to past years.

I love this show but I agree that the quality of the work has decreased.  I was reminded why when I saw the clips of people like Ray Villafane, Karen Portaleo, Richard Ruskell and Vinny Garcia.  It's like they "used up" the best people in the early seasons.  

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This was a pretty good episode. In the small scare, I did not agree with the choice of the winner which was the Food Phantoms whose Medusa had the chopped off snakes on the sides of the head.  The paint job on the head looked clunky, the chopped off snakes were confusing and the snakes on the top were not well done. But in the end they were booted anyway. I thought the team who should have won the small scare did the victim's head that looked like it was melting as it was near the sack and had the eyeballs on Medusa's hair. In the final challenge, that was tougher. The bubble bath scenario was good...loved the scary curtain and towels, but agree that the spook carved out of pumpkin should have been painted white and then shaded. But those bubbles and other details were very good. The housekeeper from hell scenario was great with the sugar cart (amazing!), bloody soap and the folded towels on the cart. The housekeeper herself was clunky and seemed out of proportion to the cart. Loved the winner, Sugar Psychos, who did the front desk with the clerk, the dog, its collar, chain, bowl, etc. I would love to see that one in person. And their tasting element sounded delish (I think it was the one with the praline cream filled donuts). I am not familiar with Sid Haig but liked him as a judge. Jonathan was his usual goofy, irritating self. Come on teams...keep ramping it up!

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Yeah, I think the competition this year seems pretty good. I, too, liked the small scare sculpture with the sack and was surprised it didn't win.  Loved the  winning presentation, esp. the dog and the clerk.  I wasn't surprised at the losing team but felt really bad for the multiple loser who went home again.  I like him and hoped his team would go longer in the competition.  A question about that though - who decides the teams?  Are they put  together at random? 

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 I didn't get the judging at all in this episode.  I thought the small scare winner looked liked crap.  I didn't get why they were raving over it.  At all.   In the main challenge, I thought the team that did the housekeeper was robbed.   I liked the bathroom too, but some of the fondant work was a little sloppy.    

 As for the teams, I get the impression that the show assembles them.  I think they find whoever they can of each type of contestant and just put them together.  I doubt it's at random, though, as I'm sure they try to put people together who'll cause friction.  

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I thought the scariest thing on this episode was Sid.  In the end, he seemed nice enough but he looked really creepy when he first walked out.

I agree with everyone above about the Small Scare.  I also think they picked the correct winner.  That whole hotel scene was terrific and the dog was just fantastic.  

Jewel is obnoxious.  She kept talking about teamwork while being a b**** to her teammates at the same time.  I was hoping her team would be eliminated just to get rid of her.

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Sid Haig is a horror movie actor, for those that were wondering. He's pretty funny, but seemed kind of serious here.

I think the Underbakers have overstayed their welcome. They're obviously not nearly as good as the others and they don't seem to get along at all. The rest are pretty impressive this year.

Also I really think the surreal melting face should have won the small scare. I also LOVED the cyborg, didn't see what the judges didn't see in it.

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I really don't like the winning team, still, but they do really good designs.  I loved the painted hallway next to the ckerk's desk. 

Jewel's chocolate pudding eyeball was alarming in its simplicity.  It must have tasted like heaven for Shin Min to be raving so much because I didn't see any creativity.

While I did not want the losing team to be the one to lose, I'm ok with it because the peanut butter hamburger also seemed to be a poor concept.  As long as The Underbakers go next, I hope.

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Yeah, I have to say that I laughed with glee when the pumpkin carver man on The Underbakers was the only one of that team that got praise for their small scare and the cake work / sugar work were both panned. Hee! Karma's a bitch.

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I liked the Evil baker the best and thought the details were great. The grandmother story was Ok and the grandmother looked scary, but the other details, especially the sugar, didn't look that good. I think the right team went home. The two faced witch probably fit the challenge the best, but the faces didn't look good. They just don't have a great pumpkin carver on their team. 

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6 hours ago, joanne3482 said:

I wanted the Underbakers to go just because I loathe their sugar artist. I feel like she's the issue with the team. 

God yes.  Also their cake artist's accent hurts my teeth.

And they didn't even fit the theme!  Although that other team did have wonky runny faces, at least it matched what the judges wanted.  And I want that gingerbread cookie.

The Underbakers are not going to be top two so she can forget that.

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I can see why the losing team went home. Although I liked the idea they had, the faces on their sculpture were really bad.  In fact, I thought the "good" side looked more evil than the bad side.  The boy was just creepy.  

I'm not a fan of the Undertakers, but their work has improved.  The ice cream man was pretty good.  Plus, they seemed to work better this week.

The person I don't care for is the blond lady. She just rubs me the wrong way.

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 I thought the losing team deserved to go too.  The faces were bad and I agree with the judges, they weren't going to get any better in this competition.   Plus, I thought their theme was a bit too literal.   OTOH, I thought the other two non-winning teams weren't very successful in the theme.  They were both someone who's supposed to be good (famous chef / ice cream man) who's really a creeper but it was a bit of a stretch to the theme.  Still, I would have given thhe win to the Chef piece.  I thought everything on it was done well.

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Count me in as someone who thought the wrong team went home. The losing team at least had some great details on their work and it fit the theme. And the way the poor girl made umpteen bicycles? That's perseverance. The ice cream/brain guy was way too simple and not nearly as detailed.

I hate the drama of the Underbakers, they don't do well at all - should be gone by now.

Edited by CherZ
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Underbakers' sugar artist seems to be the real problem.  She riles up the insecure pumpkin-carver and the anxiety-ridden cake artist too much.  Those two would perform better without her attitude. The best part of the Underbakers' small scare design was that carved pumpkin/victim face, but the way they positioned it and colored it, it just about disappeared into the floor. 

"Not So Dandy" does not equal "Scary."  That lion was just silly and I agree with the judge who said it looked like a dog.

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I love that they are showing prior seasons on Friday nights.

I had forgotten just how amazing the Vampires vs. Zombies tableau was that the Bling Bats did.  The shading, the painting, the hair.  All amazing.  Now I see why it's said that no season will probably live up to this one. 

Also Justin.  Love.

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I've been watching the reruns of past seasons too.  Karen Portaleo has amazing talent.  I loved watching her on Challenge.  And Ray Villafane is a master of his craft also.  Both of their teams had outstanding final displays but I thought Karen and the Bling Bats deserved the win.  I also enjoyed season 2 because it had Richard Ruskell and Vinny Garcia, two of my favorites from Challenge.  Since then, the talent pool has been a lot weaker IMO.  

I miss Justin too.  I like Jonathan but I wish he'd tone it down a bit.  A lot.

 

OMG!  I just Googled Vinny Garcia to see what he's doing now and learned that he died suddenly of leukemia in December of 2013.  I always liked him and I feel terrible about it.  

http://chicago.eater.com/2013/12/3/6320643/former-bleeding-heart-owner-vinny-garcia-passes-away

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Total B.S.

Why do they think watching juvenile sniping is the least bit entertaining?  Or think I can't wait to tune in to more of it?  Sorry, I'm out.  I don't care one whit who wins and won't be watching. 

The Underbakers dragged this season down. 

Edited by backgroundnoise
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The Underbakers should have been eliminated three weeks ago.  And last week.  And this week.  I haven't been impressed with anything they've done.  The two women are unpleasant and Jewel is a hypocrite.  In her THs, she talks about teamwork but she spends all her time bitching and complaining to her teammates.  Her sugar work isn't that great either.  I couldn't believe she removed part of the guy's work and destroyed it on purpose.  She should have been penalized for doing something like that.  Even if she was correct in her assessment, she had no business doing that.

The only thing I liked on their display was the head on the male figure.  Overall, I thought the smaller scene with the skeletons was better.

If the Sugar Psychos don't win after being the best all season, I'm going to be mad.

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6 minutes ago, mlp said:

Even if she was correct in her assessment, she had no business doing that.

She wasn't really correct though because the judges commented that the mausoleum needed something on top. It was left with an empty space. If she didn't waste all of the guy's time arguing with him and let him do his work, he probably would have been able to finish it the way he wanted. 

I really, truly cannot believe the Underbakers are still in this (well, I can: it's for the drama). The sugar artist has zero skills but a big mouth.

Edited by TimetoShine
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It's the horrifying finale of Halloween Wars! After taking down the competition one by one, the final two teams made up of a pumpkin carving expert, cake artist and sugar artist go to battle one last time.

The team that can best capture the scariest and most demonic wedding ever imagined will be crowned Halloween Wars champion and win $50,000.

Bitsie Tulloch, actress from the hit series Grimm, joins as special guest judge.

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I can't stand the two women on the Underbakers.  The white lady always looks like she's about to cry or just finished crying.  The black lady complains about the other two but her work is sub-par.  I also didn't like the blond woman on Crypt Cookers.  She was such a bitch about losing to the Sugar Psychos.

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If Jersey does not win this it will be a travesty.

And I know how hyperbolic that is but for cod's sack The Underbakers are TERRIBLE and do not deserve to win, I don't even care what they make next week.  Jewel is the WORST.

Also even if Jersey has already made a robot and the judges were right to call them out on their sameness.

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Wow, that is so sad about Vinny! I am rewatching season 2 now and he was SO talented. So sorry for his family and friends. That POS disease leukemia claimed him quickly. 

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The man cave team was freaking robbed.  The detail and execution was amazing and I liked the scale of it. Yeah, maybe they should have arched the mausoleum entry so that it would be easier to view the man cave, but how clever of an idea. I knew they'd choose Underbakers for all the stupid drama. I will be so pissed if they win. 

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I guess I am in the extreme minority, but, judging just by the end product, I understand why the Undertakers are still there.  The eliminated team had some nice details, but it just didn't work.  The Under bakers did do some good work, but that's just my opinion.

That being said, I don't care for the team and my fear is that they will win the whole thing.  I do kind of understand why the two were so frustrated with the pumpkin artist.  He just wouldn't listen.  Maybe they could have come up with a plan to fill the space if they worked better together.

I do think the winning team has done some of the best work I have seen in a while.

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20 hours ago, backgroundnoise said:

Why do they think watching juvenile sniping is the least bit entertaining?  Or think I can't wait to tune in to more of it?  Sorry, I'm out.  I don't care one whit who wins and won't be watching. 

 

My first thought when the Under Bakers weren't eliminated was that the Food Network just wanted to keep them for the potential drama. Like you, that is not why I watch these baking/creating competitions. They should have been eliminated on the basis of their unsportsmanlike conduct.

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I really liked Vinny, too.  In fact, I think season two is my favorite ( I am also watching it right now).  It seemed the most consistent of any season with each team having some great pieces.  Plus,  the final zombie wedding was the best!

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The woman from Underbakers named Erin is from my neck of the woods.  She has a bakery near by and quite the following for her cake art and cupcakes. She can definitely do amazing fondant and painting work.   My sister ordered a "Fenway Park" cake for her Red Sox fan husband's 40th bday.  It was a perfect 3D depiction & really detailed and very impressive (and crazy expensive).  However, like many cakes that are so stunning on the outside, the cake itself tasted like nothing.  It was dry and flavorless.  Even though it was one layer of strawberry and one layer of lemon, if it hadn't been for the pink and yellow colored cake, no one would have guessed they were supposed to taste like something.  My sister called the day after the party to say how great everything looked, but was a little disappointed that the flavors were not detectable.  Erin got huffy and said something to the effect of she was an award winning baker and has been on TV several times.  She wouldn't have the phone ringing off the hook if people didn't like her cake. That was 5 years ago and no one in my family has ever gone back. Another person I know went in her shop more recently to order a less extravagant, simpler cake and said Erin was very rude and dismissive.  She walked out without ordering. Her attitude on this show isn't surprising to me. 

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My ten year old was almost in tears when Jewel snapped the roof in half so he had to make it flat. She said that was the meanest thing she'd ever seen on a cooking show. 

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Do the people on these teams know each other and select each other as teammates prior to the competition or does FN choose the teams?  The Underbakers just seem like three strangers who hate each other.

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10 hours ago, Drogo said:

My ten year old was almost in tears when Jewel snapped the roof in half so he had to make it flat. She said that was the meanest thing she'd ever seen on a cooking show. 

I agree. I was so shocked! And then HE apologized to HER!!

This team better not win. 

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13 hours ago, BusyOctober said:

The woman from Underbakers named Erin is from my neck of the woods.  She has a bakery near by and quite the following for her cake art and cupcakes. 

I was actually beginning to wonder if The Underbakers were really actors out of Central Casting.  I'm continually amazed at how so-called professionals act on shows like this.  Why on earth do they think that will draw customers?  Anyone who is remembered is remembered for all the wrong reasons. 

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Underbakers are the anti-Bling Bats to me. Once BB replaced that one lady they became one of the most cohesive teams I've ever seen. They just clicked and it showed in their work. It was beautiful. Underbakers, OTOH, seem about ten seconds from killing each other with whatever tool they have in their hand. It is not enjoyable to watch and taints all their work. I have to believe they were kept for the drama because it isn't for their remarkable skills.

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2 hours ago, TaraS1 said:

Do the people on these teams know each other and select each other as teammates prior to the competition or does FN choose the teams?

I have always wondered the same thing.  

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I guess I am in the extreme minority, but, judging just by the end product, I understand why the Undertakers are still there.  The eliminated team had some nice details, but it just didn't work.  The Under bakers did do some good work, but that's just my opinion.

MY issue with the Underbakers' end product -- all valid complaints about their sniping aside -- was that it was the least representative of the theme. No one coming to that without prior knowledge would think "mausoleum," unlike the other two teams' work. It looked like lovers sitting in front of a distant brick wall. The staging was horrible, too.

But the judges on this show often fail to take the theme into account, hence a mutant creature winning in the first round for a theme of demented doctors.

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I agree with others about how ridiculous it is that the Underbakers are still in the competition.  I also agree that the sugar skills are not on the same level as some of the other sugar experts.  I kind of relate to the pumpkin carver and his 'lack' of listening skills.  The complaints, criticisms, etc. of the other team members are just too much and often nonsensical.

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I HATE YOU SO MUCH HALLOWEEN WARS!

Seriously this has to be the most rigged season. There is NO way that the Underbakers should still be in the competition. Apart from their terrible bickering, their designs are sooo sub-par compared to the other teams.

That Man Cave was detailed, had intricate little pieces like a Skull dartboard in the back etc. The Underbakers looked like two figures sitting in front of a wall...and that was it. Even the sugar work was lost. They've been so consistently bland and undetailed.

I think this show has lost me. Either someone on The Underbaker team has blackmail info on the judges, are sleeping with producers or some stupid producers decided drama is greater than actual talent.

Are you hearing me Halloween Wars? I'm DISGUSTED!

Edited by CherZ
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 It's been implied, but not outright stated, the teams are assembled by Food Network.   And it makes sense.  While a baker might know a sugar artist to bring a long, neither probably have a pumpkin carver on speed dial.   I always suspected FN puts at least one team together with the express purpose of having one of them meltdown or at each others throats.   

 I know everyone blames the two women on UnderBakers for their trouble but honestly I think they all suck.   The pumpkin carver is the least offensive, but he clearly doesn't listen, can't comprehend an artistic concept and can function as part of a team on a creative level.  I think the sugar artist is driven to win but is the type of person who reacts poorly to stress, which is being created by the carver lolling around and all the bickering.  None of that makes up for the fact her work is sub-par.  The cake artist is the worst of the bunch.  She seems to have a bad attitude no matter what.

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I think the Underbaker pumpkin carver is so sick of his team members that he just tunes them out. Yappy bitches, both of them. If this team wins, I am putting a hex on Food Network and sacrificing an eye of newt. 

Rewatching past seasons this week has reinforced how the competition has slowly declined. Even this year's best team, whose name I can't recall, cannot hold a candle to Bling Bats, Dead Men Walking (RIP Vinny), or some of the other past winners. 

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If they were going to eliminate a team based on using too small of a scale, shouldn't they have set size requirements for the finished products?

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What a horrible outcome. The Underbakers should have been sent home weeks ago for their poor attitudes, lack of being team players and overall poor sportsmanship.  Their small scare piece looked awful compared to the other two. (However, I agree that CC didn't follow the instructions. Teresa mentioned a "veterinarian" at the onset but that was it. ) I thought the Crypt Cookers' mausoleum scene was awesome with all of the intricate detail. Who cares if it was small? However, I think this has always been Sugar Psychos' to lose. GO SUGAR PSYCHOS!!! 

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Oooohhh lookie what I found! A reddit conversation with the Underbaker's pumpkin carver. He really doesn't seem to like his team (can't blame him) and he seems like a real cool guy to boot.

https://www.reddit.com/r/halloween/comments/53w9gg/my_team_on_halloween_wars_im_the_one_in_the_middle/?#bottom-comments

A highlight:

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On their end the editors made my teammates look like decent, caring human beings compared to the way they actually acted. They should get some kind of reward for that honestly.

The best part was when they tried tried tell me that the carving of the pumpkin medusa was the worst part of our piece and all I said was 'Okay let's see what the judges say'.

 

Edited by CherZ
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Wow, that was some interesting reading.  The pumpkin carver sounds like an intelligent guy and he writes well.  I give him high marks for maintaining his cool for four episodes.  He didn't stoop to the women's level.

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5 hours ago, OtherLevelJ said:

I appreciate you complimenting my writing, especially since there is a missing 'to' in the quote:)

Wow! A celebrity in our midst! Welcome, OtherLevelJ! (Is it really you?) I don't know how you managed to put up with those two chicks. I couldn't believe it when that one chick ripped the roof off your mausoleum. If I had been in your shoes, there would have been real-life mayhem and gore! ha! Can you share how Underbakers was assembled? Did Food Network put your team together?

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