The Block on Channel 9 – All that bubbling tension between Houses 2 and 3 is about to boil over.
Grab your firmest safety gear Block lovers, this is going to get wild.
But let’s start as we intend to go on, with a spot of renovating.
The final cladding is being installed on all the houses and things are really starting to take shape.
Architect Julian Brenchley pops by and lets Leah and Ash know they’re going to be getting a fancy, wavy 3D printed fence. It’s very schmick and it’s never been done in Australia before. Fancy!
Steph and Gian are so cashed up that they’ve decided to not only tweak their master ensuite, but also update all their existing bathrooms so they’re more consistent. As you do when you’ve just landed yourself an extra $90k.
While they’re busy renovating, Brett is sticking to his plan of stirring the pot and checking out a fresh new arrival at The Block. It’s a stack of magazines, featuring none other than our Blockheads.
As it turns out, the teams were visited on-site a few weeks earlier and the journalists gleaned some insights about the varied relationship dramas on Charming Street.
“It became very apparent, very quick, House 2 had been chatting some crap,” Brett shrewdly observes, as he casts an eye over the headlines. Spotting one that says, “We wish we never met them!” he grits his teeth.
“Gloves are off, cool.”
He scoops up the mag and shows his wife. “Are you joking?” she says incredulously.
“They ruined our first win” is the next headline, and this time, it focuses on the drama between Kristy and Brett and Eliza and Liberty – the same people currently catching up on the latest goss together.
Oh my dramatic god. How awkward.
Last year’s Block contestant Tom merrily decides to pour some fuel on the fire. He delivers a stack of mags to Leah and Ash, pointing out that there are claims the pair simply want fame.
Leah does not want a bar of it and says she isn’t even reading it.
However, somehow she can’t escape the drama because before long, Eliza, Liberty and frenemy Kristy have gathered in her living room to debrief.
“Everything’s soooo out of context,” muses Eliza.
But Kristy later admits she and Eliza knew the quotes they gave were accurate… which hints that what Leah was quoted as saying is also likely accurate.
Oblivious of this realisation, Leah and Ash head off to the shops, waving goodbye to Kristy as they go.
She once again totally ices them out.
“So weird!” breathes Ash.
Brett however, isn’t avoiding anything. When Leah and Ash return to site, he quickly raises the elephant in the room. “How good’s the magazines?” he says. “It was hilarious.”
Leah and Ash claim they don’t want to read the mags, but they do want to discuss why Kristy is completely ignoring them.
“We’re just sad,” Leah says. “I don’t want to end it like this.”
Brett explains that Kristy has her guard up.
And Kristy agrees. To the cameras, she admits she finds Leah’s timing for feeling sad highly suspicious. She can’t believe Leah genuinely wants to rectify anything, and thinks the attempt has been motivated by the headlines.
“She does it all for a reason,” Brett agrees.
Brett tries to explain to Kristy what Leah and Ash were hoping for.
“How about not try and push all your bad behaviour onto us?” Kristy muses instead, arms folded.
She doesn’t think she has anything beneficial to discuss with the pair, so explains she has chosen to completely remove herself from the conversation.
Next door, House 4 have received some very tragic news from home. Steph’s grandfather had recently had a fall and she’s just received the devastating news that he has passed away.
She feels disconnected from her family, and despite being enveloped in supportive hugs from her Block friends, Steph is shattered.
“Anything you need, always,” Liberty reassures her.
Steph explains that she actually had a secret significance to her winning kids’ bedrooms – they were designed for twin boys, and her grandfather was a twin himself.
“His name was Gabriel, he was a twin and actually … that was for him and his brother,” she shares.
It’s a beautiful tribute to her beloved grandfather, who Steph shares was also a big Block fan.
We can only imagine how proud he must be. He was 90 years old and as Steph and Gian explain, lived an exceptional life.
…There’s no easy way to start talking about pools after that very sad news, so we’re just going to have to start talking about pools.
Next week, the landscaping of the teams’ front and back yards kicks off, and Plungie pools are starting to be delivered. House 3 have opted for an enormous pool, or as Brett puts it, one that is “a lot better than the bird baths at the other houses.”
We pause here to remind everyone that it’s become quite apparent over the course of the season that along with massive pools, Brett really likes cars. He did everything he could to try and snag a recent prize that consisted of a trip to Phillip Island (even offering to buy it). He’s now doing everything he can to try and win the coveted Mach-E Mustang that is up for grabs for the winner of Front Landscaping Week.
Even if that means changing the “Front” reveal completely.
Stay with us here.
House 3’s original front yard was on the corner of Charming Street. However, the floor plan was changed so the back and front yards were swapped around.
Brett has smelled an opportunity.
He wants to propose that he presents his “front yard” as the one with the fancy pool in it. So when everyone else is presenting – in his words – “smaller areas and nice little shrubbery and paths”, he will be able to present an “elite” space consisting of a pool, outdoor kitchen and more.
House 3’s original drawings and renders have the rooms labelled as per the very first plan and even though Brett and Kristy are aware things have changed, Brett has his eye on the ultimate prize.
“We know what we’re doin’,” Brett says, suppressing a grin, and admitting he may need to clarify things at a body corporate meeting. “We don’t want to mention Mustangs,” he clarifies.
“I want to propose this with as little time as possible for everyone to think,” Brett says.
The meeting is finally sprung on the Blockheads, who assemble in House 3.
The last body corp wasn’t exactly all sunshine and rainbows and given the lingering tension from the magazines, no doubt everyone’s hackles are raised.
“I’m just there for the ride,” Kristy says, explaining she’ll back Brett, who is keenly aware he needs to present this idea as calmly and coolly as possible.
No one is an idiot so they quickly understand that Brett and Kristy are essentially trying to clarify they’re presenting their pool in a week where no one else is presenting their pool.
Leah and Ash immediately smell a rat. They push Brett to clarify exactly where his front door is, noting that would surely indicate where their front yard is.
Leah then suggests they simply call the weeks “pool week” and “other”.
This is not what Brett is after.
“I knew what they were trying to do,” Leah says sagely to the cameras. Letterboxes vs a huge Plungie pool? No sir.
She’s got a wingman in Steph, who shrewdly points out the original schedule didn’t simply say ‘Backyard week’, it also said ‘Backyard and pools’.
Brett’s plan is even further thwarted when Simmo, Nine in Six’s builder, pops in to the meeting.
Simmo flatly tells Brett where his backyard and front yards are and let’s just say it’s not where Brett would have liked him to say.
“We’ve wasted a lot of people’s time,” Brett says, playing the role right down to the wire.
“Simmo, can we not do that?” he asks, in one final push.
“No, not with all the scaffold in the way,” Simmo says, instantly deleting himself from Kristy and Brett’s Christmas card list.
“Does the negotiation just stop there, does it?” Brett asks, as everyone gets up to leave. Scrambling, he asks what would happen if everyone voted they could do it his way.
“No. Everyone does pools together,” says Leah firmly.
Absolute daggers are shot from eyeballs.
But Brett is not giving up and he’s about to take his scheming to a whole new level.
He approaches Simmo after the failed meeting and manages to convince him it’s a possibility.
The next step? He needs three more votes from his fellow Blockheads that he can indeed flip the weeks. Majority rules, after all.
“We really want to dumb it down like we’re not desperate for it,” Brett strategises with Kristy. He plans to hit up the Houses in a strategic order. House 5, 1 and 4 are first… with their rivals in House 2 the very last vote.
He manages to get an easy win from House 5. “I don’t care,” says Eliza. “I’m not really concerned about anyone else’s journey except our own.”
Brett gets an OK from Leslie, who also doesn’t care. He just needs Gian’s vote and he’s got his plan across the line. Considering Gian is a hard worker and busy, Brett decides to put the squeeze on while he’s potentially focused elsewhere.
“I don’t know how it gets judged fairly,” ponders Gian, referencing the fact there’s also a car up for grabs in the week Brett is proposing.
To his credit, Brett does not even flinch.
“I’m indifferent, I don’t care,” Gian says eventually. Brett secures what he describes as a “very forced” handshake and Gian is left reeling. He’s unsure what he’s shook on – as he thought he was shaking as an acknowledgment of the time Brett has just taken up.
Honestly, we don’t know whether to be impressed or terrified at the way Brett has pulled this off.
But just as he is about to leave, Steph arrives and she has much more to say about this proposal. Brett admits he immediately tries to disengage from the conversation.
Instead, he continues to direct his pleas at Gian, who is a much more accommodating audience.
“We’re not really a threat, bro,” Brett attempts, as Steph continues to point out the very obvious concerns with his plan.
“I think you technically put yourself at an advantage for front yard [week],” states Gian.
THERE IS NOTHING TECHNICAL ABOUT THIS GIAN. But continue, please.
“You’re not being malicious about it,” Gian says, “…Or are you?”
Laughs all around. We’ve officially melted.
Brett makes a hasty exit, believing he has his three votes… just.
But Leah is about to decimate his plan. She visits Leslie and accidentally learns about the plan and the secret vote mission as she overhears a phone chat Leslie is having with Liberty.
“You guys would be very silly if you agree to that,” Leah says firmly.
Leah clarifies exactly what Brett’s scheme is about. “I know Kristy and Brett,” she says wisely, adding the pair are “100%” being calculating.
Liberty and Leslie quickly realise they’ve accidentally agreed to a con.
And so, Leslie calls a body corp… and brace yourselves, because all hell is about to break loose.
This recap has been used with permission from Channel 9
Special thanks to Lulu Wilkinson at Nine.
Link to 9Now HERE
Link to Lulu’s full recap including with extra video content and info HERE
The Block on Channel 9
About The Block
Get ready, Australia. The Block, the number one renovation reality program, returns for an incredible 19th season on Sunday, August 6, at 7.00pm on Channel 9 and 9Now.
Set in the family-friendly Melbourne suburb of Hampton East, the new series features five houses designed and built in the 1950s and located on the aptly named Charming Street. These grand old dames are now aged in their 70s and way overdue for a contemporary update.
For the first time in Block history, host Scott Cam will be providing contestants with the full renovation schedule ahead of time this season. So get your cameras out, Blockheads, it’s photo time.
Adding to the year of Block firsts and amping up the stakes at play during the 48-hour House Decider Challenge, contestants will be seeing all finished designs of the houses on Day 1. Who will prevail and get the house of their choice?
Not only will they get the schedule and designs up front, but in another first, they’ll receive their entire budgets as well.
However, the Blockheads will soon find out that it’s not all smooth sailing when renovating an original 1950s home – structural issues, extreme weather events, and a mountain of demolition will test our five keen couples every step of the way.
Plus, The Block’s state-versus-state rivalry will be amplified by the sheer closeness of the houses this year. Who knew being able to peak into your neighbours builds would cause such tension?
The couples in contention are: sisters Eliza and Liberty Paschke (personal assistant, 37, and integration producer, 34, VIC); parents Kyle and Leslie Cottone (firefighter, 36, and teaching aide, 34, WA); parents Leah and Ash Milton (first aid officer, 31, and builder, 36, QLD); married couple Kristy and Brett Beames (project manager, 34, and safety officer, 34, SA); and newlyweds Steph and Gian Ottavio (architect, 27, and start up worker, 27, NSW).
Real estate expert Marty Fox isn’t the only new addition to the lineup this season. The formidable foremen Keith Schleiger and Dan Reilly will be joined on site with the fan favourite from last year, Tom Calleja.
The nation fell in love with Tom and his wife Sarah-Jane because of their work ethic and relatable marital bickering, and he jumped at the chance to work with Scotty and come back as this year’s official Block plumber.
The designs of the amazing homes in this series again come from The Block’s resident architect, Julian Brenchley.
At stake is $100,000 for the overall winner of The Block, on top of any profit the five couples can all make on the critical auction day. Plus bragging rights for the winners’ state.
Since premiering on Channel 9 in 2003, Australia’s richest reality program has awarded a total of $32,592,807.65 in prizemoney.
The Block – on Channel 9 and 9Now
Media Release – Nine
TV Central Nine content HERE