Liz Gray

Featured Blogger for HGTVersus

All Posts by Liz Gray

Jul 12

The Final Four: Relive Their Journeys With JD

Only one more day before the season two finale of Brother Vs. Brother! It seems like just yesterday that 10 contestants met to battle it out for a chance to win $50,000 (and a slice of cake.) Now, only four remain: Three on Team Drew and one on Team Jonathan.

Brother Vs. Brother Finalists - HGTV Instagram

Instagram Photo by ericeremita

JD takes you through the highs and lows that brought Melissa, Eric, Rick and Adi to the finale.

See Their Journeys

Jul 11

Team Jonathan Vs. Team Drew: Fans Get Creative!

You’ve all been showing support for your favorite Brother Vs. Brother teams all season long with the hashtags #TeamJonathan and #TeamDrew. (Currently, Jonathan is in the lead with 53 percent to Drew’s 47 percent.) But some fans (and the brothers) went above and beyond! See some of our favorite shows of support below, then check out more favorites on our Brother Vs. Brother Pinterest board.

Here, Jonathan poses in front of a fabulous Las Vegas…I mean Team Jonathan…sign:

Team Jonathan on Brother Vs. Brother

Meanwhile, Drew isn’t above recruiting Jonathan’s dogs, Gracie and Stewie, to his team! Here, they pose on a Team Drew welcome mat.

Brother Vs Brother - Team Drew

Some houses are dividing their support (and wardrobe inspiration) like Twitter fan @ReviewsSheROTE:

Brother Vs. Brother - A House Divided

Others brought out their crafting skills to show support, like Twitter fan @chrstinemkerns:

Brother Vs. Brother - Team Jonathan
Team Jonathan’s supporters are an artistic group! Twitter fan @DSWalk1 says, “Come on, who wouldn’t want to cruise around in the #TeamJonathan Machine?!?”

Brother VS. Brother - Team Jonathan
Some of you came up with predictions, like fans @sil_voto and @votoalice.  They’re rooting for Team Drew’s Eric and Team Jonathan’s Rick.

Brother VS. Brother - Who Will Win?
Here’s another Eric supporter…his wife, Joanne. She got her nails painted, ahem, Drew blue in support of the team.

Brother VS. Brother - Team Drew
Twitter fan @DarleneAlvarez prefers her morning coffee with a side of #TeamJonathan:

Brother VS. Brother - Team Jonathan
And last season’s winner, David Font, took his #TeamDrew support all the way to Key West.

Season 1 Brother Vs. Brother Winner David Font

 Who do you think will win it all this year? And which brother will be the fan favorite? Keep voting for #TeamJonathan and #TeamDrew.

Jul 8

Ask the Producer: Brother Vs. Brother Episode 5

Each week all season long, I’ll chat with Brother Vs. Brother producer Loren Ruch about his favorite on-set moments and what you didn’t see on TV. This week: How many cameras are there on set? And does an injury give one team an unfair advantage?

HGTV Online Host JD Scott With All the Brother Vs. Brother Contestants

Online Host JD Scott With All the Contestants

Blog reader DBCoop asks, “If one of the contestants becomes ill or injured, are the other team members allowed to be given extra help either from Jonathan or Drew, or provided with a temporary fill-in worker?”
Great question!  The Brothers can work as much as they possibly want to, so Jonathan and Drew can certainly jump on in, but we don’t offset the injured/ill contestant with any additional labor other than that. Since it’s a competition, we want to keep things as fair as possible, and we think that the best way to do that is to leave the renovations in the hands of the contestants and the Brothers.

Blog reader Virginia King says, “I like the Brothers, however, I would enjoy seeing them mix it up with the Cousins!” Have you ever thought about adding additional HGTV personalities to the show?
What a fun idea… Brothers vs. Cousins!  I’ll discuss this with the HGTV Programming team and see what everyone thinks!  I like the way you think, Virginia.

How many cameras do you have shooting the action at any given moment for Brother Vs. Brother?
We have six cameras on set on the day of the Challenge Assignment that you see at the top of the show.  And then those same six cameras come back for the evaluation at the end of the show.  In the middle of the show when you are seeing most of the heavy lifting going on, we have six cameras as well, but they are divided with three in one house and three in the other.

Many Cameras on the Set of Brother Vs. Brother

What was the funniest or most memorable experience from the filming of this episode?
By far, the most memorable moment was when the glass block came shattering through the kitchen window when Rick and Eric were working on that project together.  It was quite scary, and an absolute miracle that no one was seriously injured. Go behind the scenes with JD to learn more about this season’s streak of injuries >>

Have a question for Loren? Ask him in the comments below — he may just answer you next week!

Jul 7

Peek Inside the Contestants’ Notebooks – Episode 205

Another week, another look into the contestants’ thoughts and sketches from their on-set notebooks. In this season’s fifth episode, Drew and Jonathan’s squads were challenged to revamp tired ranch-style homes. Team Jonathan started off this challenge with one fewer teammate, but Adi and Peggy were determined not to the let the 2-on-3 race get the best of them.

Brother Vs. Brother - Contestants' Notebooks on HGTV.com

Over on Team Jonathan, Adi reflects on the coming challenge and the loss of teammate Stayce:

Adi’s Team Jonathan Notebook – Brother Vs. Brother

With a positive mental attitude, Adi and Peggy share the responsibility of renovating their home’s kitchen and living area. Over on Team Drew, an extra hand have Eric, Melissa and Rick a leg up to remodel the same two areas. An early win in the episode’s mini challenge also gave them their pick of home and a day’s work from a subcontractor.  In the kitchen, the team created a rustic wine rack. Here’s an early sketch of the project:

Team Jonathan Wine Rack - Brother Vs. Brother

Rick worked on the home’s fireplace, adding value with herringbone tile and built-in storage units. Here’s a rough sketch of the living room’s fireplace wall:

Rick - Brother Vs. Brother on HGTV

See the finished designs, plus revisit both home’s before pictures, in this week’s stunning photo gallery.

Jul 1

Ask the Producer: Brother Vs. Brother Episode 4

Each week all season long, I’ll chat with Brother Vs. Brother producer Loren Ruch about his favorite on-set moments and what you didn’t see on TV. This week: Was Adi really that calm? And, what was behind the team switcheroo decision? Read on to find out.

Blog reader Deb asks, “Are there safety rules the contestants are required to follow while working in the homes? I see a lot of jewelry (on both genders) that would not have been allowed on construction projects I managed years ago. That got me wondering more about safety in general.”
You better believe it! We are fanatical about safety on our set. Goggles and masks must be warn when appropriate, and we have a general contractor on site making sure that no one is operating any equipment in a way that seem obviously dangerous. It’s always my personal goal to have an injury-free season.

Jonathan and Peggy on Brother Vs. Brother Episode 4 Set

Peggy and Jonathan Demo Their Colonial Home

Moving Rick to Team Drew was quite the twist! What was behind the decision to even out the teams? How did the teams adjust to the change?
This decision came purely from Drew and Jonathan. They didn’t want ‘gameplay’ to take the place of a good fair competition. So instead of having terribly unbalanced teams, they wanted all of the contestants to have an equal chance of proving themselves. I have to say that I agreed wholeheartedly with their decision to do this.

Team Drew Scott on Brother Vs. Brother Season 2

The New Team Drew: Melissa, Eric, Rick

Did the two homes have an identical layout? The upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms had many of the same features.
They were basically the same home.  There were some differences in finishes, etc., but for all intents and purposes they were extremely similar to each other.

Adi’s leg wound looked pretty serious, but he appeared to handle it amazingly well. Was he that calm and cool on the set?
Ironically, no. There’s one shot in the show where he looks strangely calm, but in reality I think he was about to faint! He did recover quickly, but it was tense there for a moment!

What was the most memorable or funniest moment from the set of episode four?
It’s a very little thing but my favorite moment was shooting our web tosses with JD and the Brothers. There were outtakes galore, and often we needed to reshoot perfectly good takes because the crew was laughing so hard.

JD Scott Interview Brothers Jonathan and Drew

JD Scott Interview Brothers Jonathan and Drew

Have a question for Loren? Ask him in the comments below — he may just answer you next week!

Jun 30

Peek Inside the Contestants’ Notebooks – Episode 204

Another week, another set of revealing behind-the-scenes looks into the contestants’ private notebooks. This week, Team Jonathan was delivered a curve ball when the hosts agreed to send a even out the teams by sending someone to Drew’s squad. Team Drew chose Rick, leaving it an even three on three.
Brother Vs. Brother Notebooks Episode 204

Eager to find a place on Team Drew, Rick took on the budget for this challenge, as well as the colonial home’s guest bedroom. You can see his initial spending breakdowns, below:

Team Drew Budget - Brother Vs. Brother on HGTV

Having conquered a kitchen, living room and master suite, Melissa took on the home’s horribly dated master bathroom. Here, she sketches out her design plan:

Bath Drawing - Brother Vs. Brother - Team Drew

Perennial bathroom fixer Eric decided to transform the home’s master bedroom into a glamorous, Old Hollywood-style space. Here’s the sketch that started it all:

Master Bedroom Floor Plan - Team Drew - Brother Vs. Brother

Over on Team Jonathan, the unexpected loss of a teammate left them all reeling. Another (literal) blow? Adi was injured while removing the (ugly green) carpet in the home’s master bathroom.

Brother Vs. Brother - Team Jonathan - Adi

On the mend, he realized that Team Drew regards him as a tough competitor:

Team Jonathan - Adi - Brother Vs. Brother

To see the finished renovations from both houses, check out our recap photo gallery.

Jun 25

Scott McGillivray & Nicole Curtis Bring Expert Advice to Flipping the Block

You’ve met Flipping the Block host Josh Temple and online host David Bromstad. But wait — there’s even more HGTV star power in this summer’s all-new renovation showdown! Each week, Income Property host Scott McGillivray or Rehab Addict host Nicole Curtis will offer their remodeling expertise to all four teams, then ultimately decide the winner of each week’s challenge.

Flipping the Block Host Josh Temple, Online Host David Bromstad and Judge/Expert Scott McGillivray

Host Josh Temple, Online Host David Bromstad and Judge/Expert Scott McGillivray

Scott brings more than a decade of smart, value-adding renovations to investment properties, while Nicole brings a passion for giving historic properties new life.

Flipping the Block Stars Josh Temple, Nicole Curtis and David Bromstad

Josh Temple, Judge/Expert Nicole Curtis, David Bromstad

Time and budget restrictions mean the four teams will have to work even harder to impress Scott and Nicole. “These teams do not have the luxury of time or an endless budget — they must rely on the experience that helped them get here and deliver results that real home buyers will want,” said Nicole in a recent press release for the show.

What will Scott be looking for in the renovations? “As a judge, I’m most concerned with the room’s finished look, the quality of the work and the overall value each team adds to the condo,” said Scott in the same release.

What do you hope Scott and Nicole bring to Flipping the Block? What questions do you have for these huge HGTV stars? Let us know in the comments below.

Jun 25

Ask the Producer: Brother Vs. Brother Episode 3

Each week all season long, I’ll chat with Brother Vs. Brother producer Loren Ruch about his favorite on-set moments and what you didn’t see on TV. This week: Why Craftsman homes? And, did Drew send the right contestants home? Read on to find out.

Brother Vs. Brother Producer With Property Brothers and Love it Or List It Hosts

Old houses have tons of character, but tend to have more underlying problems than newer properties, like the knob and tube wiring in Team Jonathan’s house. What made you choose these properties for the episode?
I always try to listen to our viewers, and last year I received a bunch of emails asking us to shake up the types of properties featured in Brother vs Brother for this season, so we decided a great way to do that would be to show Craftsman homes, ranchers, tract homes, bungalows, etc.  We had no idea that this particular home would have so many issues below the surface, so it was as much of a surprise to me as it was to Team Jonathan.

Sadly, Drew had to eliminate Six and Thomas! Why do you think he chose Eric and Melissa as the two team members going forward?
Drew thought that Eric and Melissa worked really well together, so they made a natural fit going forward. Six is incredibly talented, but was becoming more of a lone wolf, and Thomas was starting to seem exhausted from the competition, so ultimately, I think he made the right choice. Do you?

What was your favorite behind-the-scenes or funny moment from the set of episode three?
This was probably our most intense episode of the whole season. Hilary and David took forever to crunch their numbers because they were so incredibly close.  One house had more aesthetic qualities, the other was more impressive behind-the-walls. We’ve never had that dichotomy before, so it was a long and tiresome conversation to determine the values of these properties. In the end, Jonathan eeked out the win, but all of us behind the scenes were on the ends of our seats! I have to say, I was surprised that Jonathan won this one.  Based on purely visual spaces, I liked Drew’s house more, but that’s what makes this competition so exciting to watch!  On a lighter note, we had a lot of inappropriate ‘rooster’ jokes behind-the-scenes.  I will leave those to your imagination.

Have a question for Loren? Ask him in the comments below — he may just answer you next week!

Jun 22

Peek Inside the Contestants’ Notebooks – Episode 203

Last week, we gave you the first look inside the contestants’ personal notebooks. Ready for another look? This week, see early sketches of rival kitchens. Plus: Contestants react to the challenge and the daunting double elimination.

Brother Vs. Brother - Inside the Contestants' Notebooks

Go Inside Episode 203 (Spoiler Alert!)

Jun 18

Sneak Peek: Get Ready for Episode 3 of Brother Vs. Brother

It’s 4 on 4 as the competition gets tougher on Brother vs. Brother. It’s an even one win to one between Team Jonathan…

Team Jonathan

…and Team Drew.

Team Drew on Brother Vs. Brother

Team Drew

But, a twist in episode three will give this episode’s winning team a HUGE advantage. Read on to find out more and get a sneak peek of this weeks’ remodels.

Watch a Sneak Peek of Episode 3

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