One floating brick

LEGO® Masters USA – Season 2, Episode 5: One Floating Brick

After a one week break, LEGO® Masters USA is back with the 5th episode of the season titled “One Floating Brick.” This week the competition is hanging by a thread. Literally. Our teams were challenged to make something that had to be suspended in mid-air. To achieve this complete disregard for gravity, their creations needed to be built around a single hanging technic brick. The ultimate design was totally left to them and their imagination – it just had to float. Our nine remaining teams had their work cut out for them so let’s see how they did this week.

Photos used with permission. ©2021 FOX MEDIA LLC. CR: Tom Griscom/FOX

Catching Up on E-Mails

It’s time for some more family-friendly banter and corporate synergy. Will Arnett has let his emails pile up and dang it, an important one was from his boss, who needed to video chat in mere moments! And here he is now . . . Oh, it’s just Will Arnett in a mustache. Ken Jeong is along for the call as well because reasons. I’ll admit him saying Fox never lets him stop and that he has to be on all their shows, did get a chuckle out of me. Senor Chang is the hardest working man in Hollywood! We also see the return of the golden brick, which will be given to the winner of this challenge. With all that done, the challenge details are delivered, 10 hours is put on the clock and it’s time to start brain-storming.

Go Big or Go Home

Let’s talk about the elephant, um whale in the room. Zack and Wayne went BIG on this challenge and created a dramatic sperm whale fighting a giant squid. It was definitely a show-stopper and easily landed the brothers in the top 2 for the week. The build process was interesting to see as we got glimpses of it at several stages of construction. After each visit with them we got to see more and more details. From simple square frames to a fully suspended creature, it really gave you a sense of the skill level that went into the design. The stark contrast of the red squid with its dynamic enveloping tentacles was incredible. And to have it all hanging like that? *Claps*. Great work once more from some clear front runners.

Fantasy Elements

This week several teams went with fantasy and/or fairytale elements for their builds. The majority of the results were great and incorporated fun themes and colours. Lauren & Bryan’s “Palace of the Sky Painters” was a really lovely visual with colour and the fluffiest LEGO® clouds. Their characters did lack some finer details however, as per the judge’s feedback. Maria & Philip’s “Sea Turtle Lighthouse” was absolutely wild with great detail and gorgeously made coral elements. I think the turtle itself was realized fairly, well, except for the head – that gave me crocodile vibes if I had to nitpick.

One of my favourite teams, Dave & Richard struggled a bit this week with their “Jack and the Beanstalk” inspired build. They suffered some early breaking but recovered with plenty of time left. The end result was another great socially-themed message (in this case, wealth redistribution) but the clouds were lacking in detail and it didn’t have enough impact for a 360° viewing – a key part of the challenge brief. This was the second rough week in a row for the duo after being in the bottom 2 last week. Hopefully they’ll rebound for the last few episodes.

We Need More Reality TV Drama!

Will Arnett needs more TV drama! Or so he’s scripted to say. Twins Caleb & Jacob and brothers Steven and Mark are building very similar looking creations. So Will decides to poke the bear a little bit and get Caleb to call out the other team. This was probably new territory for sweet friendly Caleb, but this is television people! His “performance” was alright. I give him a B- for effort. The twins did however manage to make a very impressive build called “Floating Fields” that really impressed the judges. The waterfall elements were excellent and so was the imaginative story and characters. Now we just have to teach Caleb how to trash talk and he’s all set 😄

Mark and Steven were the big winners this week with their “Floating Gnome Forest” build. Put in the top 2 with Zack & Wayne, we got a rematch of sorts from the first episode albeit with a different outcome. The friends grabbed the win this time around by creating a vibrant, colourful build that looked great from all angles. Those leaves were a real standout, I absolutely loved the colour and size. They also managed to make a well balanced creation that stayed level! The judges had specifically tasked them with ‘letting loose’ this time around and they delivered for the top spot AND the coveted golden brick.

Nerves and Second Guessing

The bottom 2 teams for this week both dealt with some design and confidence issues. Last week’s winners Michelle and Natalie had a reversal of fortune sadly with their “Whisper’s Planter” build. As the friends looked around the room, they began to have doubts about the caliber of their build, and specifically how small it was compared to the others. In a competition like this, with all the builds coming together around you, it’s understandable that nerves and doubts would creep in. I did agree with the judges that the finer details were all superb – but they were just too fine for what was being asked of them. And let’s praise them for making LEGO® bricks look like knitted macramé! A genius use of pieces.

The 2nd team in the bottom was Randall & Syreeta for their “Hot Air Balloon” build. A favourite team of mine, the friends really struggled with timing and the final assembly of their balloon. Kudos to them for essentially building two halves that then had to come together though. The judges were impressed by the larger scale, but sadly that was all. The details were lacking, the colours were basic and it really didn’t have a wow factor. There also wasn’t much of a story. A real shame given their creative approaches in past challenges. Unfortunately, all this led to them being the latest team eliminated from the competition.

Current Standings

We’re probably at the halfway mark for the season and our clear front-runners remain Zack & Wayne, followed closely by Mark & Steven. I’m still not counting out Dave & Richard or Michelle & Natalie as they each have a win and some great critiques. I think Caleb & Jacob definitely have the stuff to move to the top 3 if there’s a pretty big upset or elimination. Should be interesting to see what happens next!

Final Thoughts

This week’s episode was pretty standard fare. The jokes were hit or miss but the builds were overall pretty great. This week had some clear stand-outs though so it was pretty easy to predict the top 2. I did expect Jen & Susan to be in the bottom 2 with Randall & Syreeta, but their “Birthday Party Treehouse” managed to make it through safely. I think the moms are definitely sticking a little too close to family-inspired fare and not thinking outside the box enough for concepts. Hopefully next week is a nice turn around for them.

  • Seriously, when did Ken Jeong become the guy on ALL the television shows?
  • Will Arnett’s make-up this episode was better….less ‘orange’
  • I’m gonna miss Syreeta’s amazing hairstyles – they were on point!
  • Still on the topic, Syreeta’s 80’s sweater was also amazing
  • Caleb & Jacob using capes to make wings for their bug creatures is really creative
  • The golden brick needs to be in play more, like every episode it should change hands – shake it up!
  • I thought ‘Moby Brick’ was clever. Then Tom pointed out it’s on the cover of the book in the Modular Bookshop set. So I’m less impressed now and I recant my statement

OVERALL SCORE: 6.5 / 10

What did you think about this week’s episode? Did you agree with the tops and bottoms of the week? Who are you rooting for? Comment below and as always, keep on brickin’.

-Frank

LEGO® Masters USA airs Tuesdays at 8:00 PM ET/PT on FOX in the US, and on CTV, CTV.CA and the CTV app in Canada.

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