Evaluation: ‘Blown Away’ Is a Soothing Watch for Glass Enthusiasts

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Reality competitors shows all operate below the very same hyper-precise unreality, 1 exactly where the point of life is compressed into a singular objective: It is about winning. It is about becoming the finest. Practically nothing else matters. These higher stakes catch on… when they’re rooted in reality. 

There is (or in some instances, was) genuine cultural cache in taking residence the title of American Idol, Iron Chef, America’s Subsequent Major Model or the Sole Survivor. The rewards of winning Netflix’s glass-blowing competitors “Blown Away” and becoming Most effective In Blow ­— yes, that is actually the title they chose — are significantly less sweeping. But that does not make this 10-episode series any significantly less enjoyable to watch. If something, it could possibly essentially heighten your viewing knowledge. 

“Blown Away” is a Canadian series and, as a outcome, lacks some of the edited-in rancor present in American reality Television. This operates in the show’s favor. Drama in the “hot shop” (the spot exactly where you blow glass, apparently) is minimal and mainly glass-associated, which makes it possible for viewers to concentrate on the show’s most significant asset: the truth that glassmaking and glass art are sick to appear at. It is just cool! There’s no way about it! 

Every single episode is a small far more than 20 minutes extended and consists of a single challenge. The competing glass artists are provided a prompt, an assistant or 3, and then set loose in the hot shop for hours. As soon as the clock stops, the artists show their operate and are judged by host Nick Uhas, a former Major Brother contestant and present “science influencer,” Katherine Gray, an art professor and glass artist who gives super harsh feedback, and a third guest judge.

Uhas is the excellent host for “Blown Away,” mainly because as opposed to all of the other seasoned experts or committed enthusiasts who populate the show’s landscape, he admittedly does not know something about glassblowing. He’s quippy, bland and incredulous, and he appears to judge entries totally primarily based on irrespective of whether or not he personally thinks they are cool — which is specifically what fairly considerably everyone prepared to dedicate their time to watching a reality Television glassblowing competitors would do in his stead. 

The show’s tone is severe to a degree that is, at instances, comical, provided that the stakes are not so higher. But it is also authentically moving to see the passion the competing artists really feel for their operate, and for the operate of glassmaking as a complete. The most realistic point about “Blown Away,” and about reality Television competitions in basic, is that for the contestants, this matters. The constraints are not genuine, but the contestants are — and they’re all fairly talented to boot. 

Like all fantastic reality Television, “Blown Away” does the operate to clarify the glassblowing approach so as to imbue its viewers with a (short-term, artificial) sense of authority on the subject. Even devoid of individual glass-blowing knowledge, we as an audience can cast a stern eye on a subpar vase in the very same way that frequent “Shark Tank” viewers are capable to get in touch with out an unreasonable sales pitch, even if they had to cheat their way via a college economics course.

General, “Blown Away” is a pleasant, visually arresting watch. The appeal stems from the truth that, once again, it is dope to appear at glass art. It is even far more dope to watch skilled artists go via the approach of creating a piece of glass art. 

Also, mainly because it has to be stated: No, they do not make bongs. Yes, that would be sweet. Sorry.

But this series is best viewed when 1 is 75% of the way to uncomfortably higher. Clear out a 4-ish hour window in your schedule (you can likely binge this point in a sitting or two), throw it on and get prepared for a pleasantly mild ride. 

Who knows — you could possibly even really feel like you discovered one thing.

 Inform US, have you observed “Blown Away”?

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