Last night on Spike’s tattooing competition show Ink Master, the artists had to tattoo DC Comics villains for their main challenge in front of special guest judge and Batman artist Greg Capullo. It was a rather clever tie-in to Villains Month, and not coincidentally all of the villains tattooed last night also have their own Villains Month issue (or, in the case of Catwoman, their own regular series).
Oddly, the show seemed poorly advertised for such a cool tie-in. DC had a press release on their website, but that’s about it; I didn’t find out about the show until Bleeding Cool did a post about it a few hours before it aired. And here’s the thing: I’m nothing if not inundated with comics news ALL day, AND I actually watch Ink Master, and I STILL had no idea this was happening. Maybe I missed the coverage elsewhere, but from my perspective it feels like a missed promotional opportunity across the board.
Regardless, it was a good show. There was the usual fighting and yelling that takes up far too much time on Ink Master; they always pick such volatile contestants. But the tattoos turned out really nice for the most part. And they’re all online, so we can take a look.
This one actually sucked. Jime Litwalk did Poison Ivy in his own style instead of making the tattoo look like comic art, plus he went way too heavy on the green. Each week the group of people who get tattooed vote on the worst tattoo, and he got the nod this week:
Tatu Baby (yes, she actually wants people to call her that) did the Joker, and it was pretty good apart from her running low on time and having to truncate the torso oddly:
Joshua Hibbard recreated a Secret Six cover with his Bane tattoo, which went over very well with the judges and nearly won him best tattoo of the night:
However, Joey Hamilton took top honours with this fantastic Catwoman tattoo that Greg Capullo absolutely loved:
Jason Clay Dunn’s Deathstroke tattoo was decent, though he ended up in the bottom three due to a lack of colour saturation:
Jackie Jennings’ tattoo was SPOILER ALERT the worst of the night and she was sent home, partly due to some shaky lines but also because she flipped the tattoo and had Two-Face burned on the wrong side:
Finally, Kyle Dunbar’s Darkseid turned out really well, and the judges loved the detail in the face though they were less pleased with the background (he also had a time issue):
All in all, it was a strong group of tattoos from what has been a sketchy group of artists this season. There’s been a lot of rough work, and I’d say that this episode was the best they’ve done yet as a group. Plus it was a cool Villains Month tie-in, and I was far more interested in the tattooing adventures than I am for any of the Villains Month comics. It wasn’t quite as fun as when the contestants on Syfy’s Face Off got to create a new DC villain, but it was still a good time. I’m curious to see what creative reality show DC ends up working with next. Maybe they’ll design some alternate costumes for Wonder Woman on Project Runway. I’d definitely watch that.