Normally I try to keep my summaries to one page, but the prank the crew pulls in this episode is just too good to leave out the details. If you missed the show, I tried to describe the events as well as I could, so make sure you read both pages of this article!
Alex Finds Herself
Alex wants a pinup tattoo of herself in a sexy pose with high heels and revealing clothes. It may sound vain until you understand her story of a controlling boyfriend who wouldn’t allow her to wear what she wanted and caused her to lose herself. Now she is celebrating her new-found freedom and taking back control with a tattoo from the ultimate pinup tattoo artist, Kat Von D.
Vegas’ Vow to be a Better Father
Vegas laments that his father was never there for him and now he has a son of his own; he never wants to be guilty of allowing a rift to develop between them. He’s not sure how to represent it in a tattoo, so he leaves it in Ami’s hands. Ami comes up with the idea of the “Thinking Man” statue, because Vegas’ father was a mystery to him and he never knew what he was thinking. Vegas loves the idea and loves the tattoo even more.
Joel – Shop Manager Applicant and Prank Victim
Joel is the next shop manager applicant to enter the lion’s den. He just graduated from college and Ami warns him that “shop manager” means unending torment. Joel says he thinks he can handle that, so they ask him to come back the next day. In the meantime, the crew decides to pull a prank on Joel by leaving him alone in the shop and sending in a “thug” to threaten him. Their friend Joey is the perfect guy for the job – a very big, muscular black guy with a shaved head and intimidating walk. They rig the shop with hidden cameras and the plan is in motion.
Jennette was very close to her grandfather and he was very involved in her life. He taught her to speak Spanish and how to braid the hair on her dolls. She is grateful that he had the chance to watch her grow from little girl to lady – or bud to flower. So she wants a flower on her foot to remind her of him. Nunez tattoos a large orchid on her ankle and Jennette says maybe she will have the strength to visit his grave one day and will put flowers on it – maybe orchids.
Yoji Loses his Temper
Juan comes in wanting a tribal dragon. If this guy wasn’t a total plant just for TV drama, I’d be shocked. Yoji traces a tribal dragon and the guy says it looks flat like roadkill. The guy is obviously trying to bait Yoji to stir up trouble. Yoji starts to argue with him and loses his temper. Ami chews him out and threatens to take any future lost business out of Yoji’s paycheck. Then Ami takes Yoji to the gym to let him release his frustration on a few punching bags and Yoji says he feels much better.
Richard Celebrates Sobriety
Richard has literally been to hell and back. He was a drug (meth) addict for 7 years and has been sober since 1998. He talks to Ami about a sleeve of skulls with a bible scripture. Garver taunts Ami, saying he can’t draw skulls. Ami accepts the challenge and they both draw up skulls and let Richard decide. Whose skulls does he like better? Ami’s. Garver’s was clearly more detailed but he didn’t like that he had drawn eyeballs inside the sockets. But when Ami starts the tattoo, it is clearly Garver’s design although they never mention that. Either way, Richard is very pleased with his tattoo.
Joel’s back and they spend the morning showing him around the shop, just biding their time until they can leave for “lunch” and leave Joel alone to manage the shop. The crew has their friend Joey ready to come in as the “thug” to stir up trouble. Joey comes in wanting to know where Nunez is. Joel tells him that he’s out to lunch and Joey says that Nunez owes him a lot of money and he says he’s going to take Nunez paintings as payment. Joel gets right up in this guy’s face and doesn’t back down and calmly but firmly tries to take control of the situation. Joey finally “wins” and walks out with the painting and a tattoo machine. Joey’s freaking out and is pacing the shop alone mumbling to himself about “the gorilla that just walked in” and says “that guy was big!” The crew is watching all of this on the monitors they’re all doubled over in laughter. Then they return to the shop, acting like they’ve just been to lunch, and Joel tells them what happened. Ami starts yelling at Nunez for gambling again and they all start freaking out about how dangerous this guy is. Nunez says he’s leaving! Ami tells Joel to go take a walk for a minute and they’ll call him back soon so he leaves the shop and everyone starts busting up and high-fiving each other.