Syfy Reality Show is Best When It Sticks to Make-Up
Face Off (9pm) is a Project Runway-type show where the contestants compete for $100,000 for slathering on the most incredible special effects make-up. Like, in tonight's premiere, when they create a character that would seamlessly fit into Star Wars' cantina scene.
And like Project Runway, Face Off is best when it's showing off its contestants' incredible talents.
Where it stumbles - and in tonight's 90-minute episode, it stumbles particularly hard - is in the only-on-reality-TV realm.
For reasons that have nothing to do with the show's premise, and everything to do with filling up time, Face Off contestants live with each other and, tonight, are paired up into teams. Why? To create drama, such as a combative contestant storming off the show - in humiliation. It's not nice.
Face Off's, um, best face is when the contestants show off their stuff.
Tonight's winners create an incredible character - sort of a human-machine hybrid - that would easily slip into Star Wars' scenes. The fact that the team creates it in only a few days is amazing. Another team nails it, but doesn't win, with an exotic female alien that should be in some movie, somewhere, now.
Still, despite its bumps - and most episodes aren't 90 minutes - Face Off is one of Syfy's biggest hits for a reason. It's fun to plunge into Hollywood's behind-the-scenes magic. Often, it's incredible to watch what Face Off contestants pull off. With make-up, anyway.