Thursday, August 20, 2015

'Steampunk'd' review: It's a lot like 'Skin Wars' with some changes

All ten Steampunk'd contestants
What else did you expect? Steampunk'd not to resemble Skin Wars at all?

To start out, I get it. I have been known to focus on GSN's traditional shows and not the reality or competition. Yes, I do favor GSN's traditional shows, such as The Chase, Idiotest and Chain Reaction more than Skin Wars and Steampunk'd. But, every GSN show deserves a review. Here is what I thought of Steampunk'd last night:

From the start, it's different from Skin Wars in the sense that one challenge on Steampunk'd is done over three days. There is only one challenge per episode on Steampunk'd, where Skin Wars has two.

In Skin Wars, the judges cannot say "well, that's not body painting" on an artist's model. In Steampunk'd, the judges can say (and did last night) "well, that does not look very Steampunk" in a team's room. That one thing I love is that the element of Steampunk needs to be created and sometimes the artists do not have a full Steampunk-like design.

The pacing of Steampunk'd was relatively solid. A team challenge started out right away, within five minutes of the episode start and was carried over multiple days of shooting. Cannot complain about too slow pacing for a reality series. The one thing I did not like about Steampunk'd was all the drama, arguing and crying. If that happens during the competition, multiple segments of the show should not have to focus on drama and should focus more on the Steampunk.

The elimination format is a bit creative. I like how there is a winning team and losing team and of course, someone on the losing team is eliminated. The top two makers are then selected, who are the team captains for the following week. The top maker is always on the winning team but the second place maker out of all contestants can be on either the winning or losing team. That's a good touch.

For a design-based competition series, the judges table was creative. It was not like all other competition shows, including Skin Wars, which had the show's logo on the front. It was a Steampunk judges table with Steampunk design. I guess you could have seen that coming.

Finally, for the judges, same old, same old from Skin Wars. Thomas Willeford, Kate Lambert and Matt King all know what they're talking about, not completely boring (but not completely enthusiastic either). Jeannie Mai carries Steampunk'd very well and adds plenty of energy to the show.

Overall for Steampunk'd itself, it's a fine show for people that are interested in that type of art. I do not like the contestant drama and that was the one negative aspect of the entire show. We will see how Steampunk'd continues to perform on (most of the time) traditionalist GSN.


  1. Love Steampunk. Hated this show. Too much drama and not enough steampunk competition. It seemed like every nice, skilled, low drama person on the show was eliminated one by one in favor of the contestants who were big drama. Starting in the first episode where the contestant was eliminated because he was given an assignment by his "team leader" that he had no background in and was brushed off when he explained this and asked for help. Total Garbage TV

  2. This show is completely unbalanced ad certain abilities and requirements for each challenge don't showcase a level playing field for each artists capabilities.