Our resident Blockaholic Jane Yee recaps the highs and lows from week nine of The Block NZ, including Dylz’ romantic prospects.
It was chock-a-Block NZ in Meadowbank this week as the teams scrambled to complete their garages and laundries. They also had to wedge in some goodwill community service, a whole lot of odd jobs in the neighbourhood and a temper tantrum (Big Dyls). On top of this, they were ordered to finish up all other interior elements because next week they take to the great outdoors, and then? Then, it’s over. I’m already chilling the champagne and penning a note to the Justice Minister to seek compensation for the ten weeks of my life I will have spent imprisoned down this shared driveway of doom.
1) ROOM REVEAL
What’s more boring than a Hallway/Stairs/Entrance reveal? A Hallway/Stairs/Entrance reveal in which not a single team has finished the space. Production attempted to spice things up with The Dylzs having to remove a team from the running and Courtney and Emma playing a minus-one point, but there was no hiding from the fact that we’d spent a week watching strangers not get around to painting. Niki and Tiff produced the best area and won over the judges, but the Double D’s taking them out of the competition meant Courtney and Emma picked up their first ever room win with these top notch stairs.
2) STAIRWAY TO HELL
The Dylsz were so damn proud of their floating staircase concept. Not since Jesus has a carpenter talked such a big game. This could’ve been a winning week for House Two had Big Dyls not completely fucked up his calculations for the placement of each step. At the end of the week The Dylsz were left with an unfinished bespoke staircase, no practical solution for their problem and a couple of seriously bruised egos.
3) LADDER GOLF CHALLENGE
I can’t really be bothered explaining the rules of this challenge beyond teams having to throw some nuts at piece of scaffold for points. The male challengers both jumped at the opportunity to reference physiological nuts, while the female challengers did not. Courtney won for Team Blue, cracked a safe and got immunity from being minus-one’d and I fell asleep because it all got a bit boring.
4) PRISON BREAK
This week two competitors tried to escape The Block. Sam saw his chance during the ladder golf challenge where he threw his nuts directly at Mark Richardson in a bid to knock him out so he could make a run for it. Unfortunately Mark is a skilled former-cricketer with some experience in dodging objects hurtling towards him at speed – he was spared and Sam was stuck.
Another attempt at freedom involved Niki crouching on the grass verge next to a ‘free to a good home’ sign in the hope that a kind passerby might rescue her. Then her builder-crush Ryan negged her saying “it might take a while”, which worked I guess, because she was back on the tools before long.
5) EYE OF THE DYLS
First there was the heart attack/indigestion, then a nasty bout of food poisoning and this week a pesky little piece of steel found its way into Big Dyls’ eye. Surely this run of bad luck can’t be a coincidence? I’m gonna go ahead and blame Tiff, because she clearly has it in for Big D, what with her excellent eye for design and her knack for winning etc.
6) DESIGN CHALLENGE
For this week’s design challenge the teams headed to the Dingwall Trust residential facility, which houses kids as they enter and leave foster situations. Each team was charged with transforming a rundown bedroom to create a more homely environment for the kids. There was no prize, apart from all the nice feelings that come with doing a good deed, but Sam and Emmet were announced winners nonetheless. Also, Niki and Tiff used colour on the wall, so there’s that.
I’m not sure the ‘gate’ suffix works that brilliantly when attached to the root word that sparked the morpheme in the first place, but whatevs, this week we had our very own Watergate. Courtney and Emma were happily making some toast in soon-to-be-someone-else’s toaster when they discovered water all over their floor. A closer look in the roofspace revealed rather a lot of water and although Emma and Courtney may not be the most savvy builders on The Block, even they know water dripping from the ceiling is a very bad thing.
The next morning Wolfie made it clear that, despite everything we’ve ever been taught about building in NZ, All That Water was nothing to worry about because something and stuff and dodged a bullet. In other words, potential buyers are watching this show – move along folks, nothing to see here!
8) CALL ME LOYAL
This week Little Dylz confided in the nation that he’s presently single but would like to meet Ms Right soon. He has a checklist, which is super handy if you’re thinking of applying to be the future Missus Little Dylz.
As he rattled off his prerequisites, I couldn’t help but do a mental tick next to every attribute I shared with Dylz’ dream lady. Don’t pretend you didn’t do the same. Anyway, here’s how I fared:
Nice eyes? They’re not not nice, so yeah okay, sure.
Nice lips? They’re pretty good I suppose.
Not taller than him? I’m not taller than anyone.
Can make him laugh? Without a doubt.
Funny? See above.
Nice feet? How the hell did he know?!
Loyal? I’m still watching this godforsaken show, aren’t I?
You guys, I could be Mrs Little D! If he’s cool with a (heaps) older woman and a mess of preschool stepchildren then I guess I can deal with his aggro mate popping over for an Old Fashioned. This is gonna be so great.
9) TRADIE TOURNEY
What was this please? Screw being a tradie on The Block. Not only are you hassled into working for reduced rates under ridiculous time constraints, but you’re not paid on time, you get badmouthed on the telly (where is Harris?), and then you get pressured into competing in an inter-house arm wrestling tournament. All the Pita Pit in the world couldn’t make this contract worth it.
10) ODD JOB CHALLENGE
I’m actually wincing trying to think about a way to explain this challenge that was generously spread over two episodes. Twenty-four hours, text messages, odd jobs, Block money, strategies, waterblasting, dog washing and The Dylsz macking on old ladies. Again.
This challenge was expertly designed by the MediaWorks intern to ensure that The Dylsz would get to open their safe by the end of the season. A big paying job required the skill of actual builders, of which Dyls and Dylz are the only ones. The Double D’s accepted the job resulting in the win and with it the opportunity to crack open their safe. Slow clap – well played intern, well played.
PS: The most interesting thing about this challenge was discovering that if you buy one of the Block houses this year, you’ll basically be moving into a retirement village full of lovely folks who don’t clean their driveways or conservatories on the regs.
11) MORE NO MORE MR NICE DYLS
The overreacting Big Dyls narrative made a return this week. The Double Ds were on probation for a couple of noise misdemeanours earlier in the season and this week a bit of powertool action after hours was enough to send them off the field five grand down. Guess what? Big Dyls was not happy about this. He shoved some stuff, yanked down some stuff, did some swears, called The Wolf “fucking scum” and was just generally on a pretty bad buzz. On a positive note he didn’t say anyone was dead to him, so every cloud and all that.
The end is so close now. The auctioneers are warming up their gavels, the teams are preparing to meet their public at open homes and I’m trying to remember what I used to do Sunday through Wednesday nights before The Block. I’m not gonna lie, it’s been hard going, but like a courier driver trying to turn around in a neighbour’s boggy back yard, I’m stuck in this till the end.