Sunday August 21, 2005

Miami Ink review

The usually quiet comment board on Miami Beach 411 has a million girls fawning over the Miami Ink guys. Great: they’re cute. But there were signs of trouble from the very first episode: a girl who wants to remember her brother by getting a tattoo of Red Hot Chilli Peppers lyrics? Cringe . . . shouldn’t someone have told her that that song is about heroin?

But ok, we let that one go; anyone deserves a second chance. In the second episode, we have a really sweet guy getting his twin sons tattooed on his chest in memory of his wife, who died on 9/11. It’s touching, but it demonstrates what will come to be one of the show’s fatal flaws: repetition. There’s only so many reasons people get tattoos [video].

The tatoo dude working on his body suit. The mother/daughter team thing. Tattoos of dead sisters, brothers, moms, wives, husbands, and, yes, a cat. And narcissism by the truckload. Tattos are very personal and very profound, but apparently they are personal and profound in a very limited number of different ways.

The guys are actually alright. Chris Garver (who reminds us of James Spader) is the senstive one, Chris Nuñez is the cute one, Darren Brass the slacker, and Ami James, the ex-Israeli army tough guy, who’s meanness always seems contrived. Yosji, especially, is interesting, getting fake-picked-on at work, and his girlfirend Bridget threatening that their daughter won’t have his last name unless he maries her (he proposed at the end of the second episode). Darren offers his profound insight: “having a baby is like getting into a fight – you’re never really ready for it, but when it happens, you do what you gotta do.”

But it’s not enough to make an interesting show. Following the Real World formula wight down to interspacing the “reality” with interview clips, the show somehow forgot that you need interesting relationships between the permanent characters. Yelling at Yosji a little each episode doesn’t cut it. Darren getting a haircut and forgeting an appointment doesn’t cut it. The guys taking a day off to go fishing for sure doesn’t cut it.

Let’s be clear – the guys do good work. Several people have e-mailed asking about where the shop is. As far as we know, it’s open and you can get a tattoo there . . . getting on the show might be another matter:

Miami Ink
1344 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, FL 33139
Monday through Friday, 10 am to 6 pm; Saturday, noon to 6 pm

comments powered by Disqus
  1. Agnostic Abortion Baby    Mon Aug 22, 10:50 AM #  

    They’re running out of material, just like this blog

  2. Roxxy    Tue Aug 30, 01:13 AM #  

    hello it’s reality t.v. of course it’s going to get lame .. were you expecting anything but? I mean if they focused on how they do tattoo’s you’d have every crack monkey out there trying to tattoo people.. take it for what it is a tattoo soap opera.. at leat its better then passions!

  3. Sal & Sol    Tue Aug 30, 12:18 PM #  

    It didn’t get lame, it was born lame. What’s next—a show about the circumcisor? Knew one back in Brooklyn: guy had a storefront with a bunch of clocks in the front window. One day he’s asked why he has all those clocks in his front window. He says, “What should I put in the front window?”

  4. Miami Harold    Wed Aug 31, 04:24 PM #  

    Sal & Sol:
    Did you miss the memo?
    Vaudeville is dead! Has been for 75 years.
    Take that played-out joke back to the Borscht Belt
    where it belongs…
    maybe some senile corpses will get a kick out of it.
    And when you get there, stay there.
    Hey—didja hear about the Lindbergh baby?

  5. haley    Mon Nov 21, 09:52 PM #  

    i love this show!! its one of my faves! i am deeply into tattoos, in kinda runs in my family, i am old enough to get my first one yet,but when i am, (2 1/2 yrs) i am going to have ami james do it, i am so excited! i love this show, i think they are amazing artist and i respect them greatly

  6. LuckyBitch    Thu Nov 24, 02:01 AM #  

    Ami is an idiot… ‘nuff said.

  7. Leprosy    Sat Nov 26, 05:04 PM #  

    I love this show, too! Disfigured skin rules!

  8. ARIN    Tue Apr 25, 11:05 AM #  

    * i love your show i watch it all the time my fav guy is daron i love him and our names rime arin daron and my friends cousins girlfriend jessica went to florida 4 a trip and then she went to miami and she went to your shop to get a tatoo but she said it was to much haha i fell bad about that huracan you guys had. and it was funny when one of your guy’s had to move to the other side of the beach so he would stop going to the bars my mom said when i am 16 i am geting a tatoo but the problem is i live in hampton new brunswick and i want to go to miami to get the tatoo but i live to faraway but trust me i am going to get a tatoo done bye daron well i love ya all i am goign to be watching your show tonight*

  9. sary    Tue Apr 25, 11:23 AM #  

    hi nunez mi nombre es sary y espero que algun dia pueda ablar con tigo

  10. TJE    Tue Apr 25, 11:56 AM #  

    Wow, old post resurrected. But, do the last 2 comment contributors think that this is a message board for the guys on the show?

    Seems to me like the program’s just an excuse for them to charge exhorbitant prices for their work. They’re very good artists (most definitely better than the people at Tattoos by Lou – any location), but I can think of at least one other shop with better artists.

  11. alesh    Wed Apr 26, 01:02 AM #  

    Just for shits ‘n’ giggles, I’ve turned on comments for all the posts, regardless of age (previously, the ability to comment expired a few weeks after posting).

    Incidentally, to this day, this post brings in more outside traffic then any other.

  12. Nate    Thu Apr 27, 11:07 AM #  

    I dont know if i believe this article. Some points of view make sense but some things are completely wrong. There are alot of spelling mistakes

  13. alicia    Thu Apr 27, 06:39 PM #  

    ami wen r u gonna do my tatoo?

  14. francisco    Fri Apr 28, 02:39 PM #  

    I like very much your tattoos and your program

  15. Tere    Fri Apr 28, 10:22 PM #  

    Seriously. These comments are a joke, right?

  16. Christian Calzadillas    Sat Apr 29, 12:43 AM #  

    Yoji, I took your picture!

    please write back to me my mom wants to have your babies and you can knock my sister up too

  17. Another Tattoo Lover    Sat Apr 29, 09:57 AM #  

    We LOVE tattoos! We love the way they look and what they do for healthy, clear skin! Give us more! More more more!
    With all our love,
    Running Sores
    Scar Tissue
    Karposi Sarcoma

    (no mystery now why this post attracts so many hits!)

  18. ron de kleyn    Sat Apr 29, 05:07 PM #  

    I’m looking for the latest Darren Brass tattoo design he did for his dad on a recent show – father penguin holding his 2 young son’s


    Ron de Kleyn
    Calgary, Alberta