While flipping channels one day, I came across the second season of 'L.A. Ink,' with Kat Von D. I don't know how I had been so, out-of-the-loop, to have missed it previously. Now mind you, I'm screeching past, middle-age, and I own NO tattoos, but I was immediately hooked by Kat and her crew, DVR'ing every show.
While researching back-story on Kat, I learned she had started out with the popular series, 'Miami Ink,' which I had not seen either. I wanted to watch Kat's growth, leading to her own spin-off series, a book, make-up, and even a fragrance. This young woman was on a roll! I purchased Season I of 'Miami Ink,' to witness her first exposure. I was pleased, that Kat was in a few of the episodes, because there is a very clear transition from her early appearances on MI, to the Kat of the here, and now. Her appearance has changed, her demeanor, and certainly, her confidence. It was fun to watch Kat's metamorphosis to such celebrity status and success, while defying traditional social norms---a good lesson for all. Yea, Kat!
Okay, so back to MI. First off, this set contains 5 discs, with 21 episodes. I'd call that a lot of, bang-for-the-buck, even if you are just remotely interested in this cast of characters. But, I can almost guarantee, that after you watch a couple of episodes, and become enamoured with the artists, you won't want to miss a single minute. Observing these talented and distinct personalities working long hours, in such confined space, leads to some very unusual circumstances. Sometimes the testosterone runs high ,and yes, boys, will be boys.
The customers can be heartwarming, particularly those seeking to memorialize a loved one. In contrast, some are demanding, and, not too likable. But pleasant, or not, they are treated with respect and some serious artwork. If you have harboured negative images of tattoo shops, in the past, I think these artists may convince you, that many shops operate quite thoughtfully and professionally. Be warned, you may even get the itch to have a tattoo.
Chris Garver is a pleasure to watch, since he is reputed to be one of the best in the business. Of course, Kat brings to life some wonderful portraits; her specialty. Ami, Chris, Darren and Yogi, complete the cast of characters, each with individual stories, worries and some personal baggage. As with all reality series, you will meet their mothers, friends, dates, dogs, and visit their abodes, etc. By the end of the first season, you will feel like you know them, making it clearly understandable why this series has gained such success.