A B.C. brother-sister team has built its way to the final rounds of the “LEGO Masters” show on American television, with all eyes on the $100,000 grand prize.
LEGO-loving siblings David Guedes, a Surrey resident, and his sister Emily, who lives in Maple Ridge, have excelled with their tiny-brick builds in this fall’s third season of FOX-TV’s reality-competition series, also seen on CTV.
David Guedes is a “LEGO lifer” who successfully auditioned for the Will Arnett-hosted show, then chose his sister as team partner. The show finished shooting in Atlanta last spring, but the siblings are watching it now for the first time. They won’t (and contractually can’t) say how it all ends Dec. 14 in a double-episode season finale.
“Doing reality TV was completely new for me,” David said. “I’ve spent a lot of time building LEGO over the years, but never on camera.”
In this week’s episode, to air Wednesday (Dec. 7), the Guedes are among four teams left in the competition. The pairs split into teams to build a race car. In a 10-lap race, the winning team will be safe from elimination and guaranteed a spot in the semi-finals.
In the “final four,” the Guedes team is up against Calgary firefighters Stephen Joo and Stephen Cassley, an “influencers” duo of Nick Della Mora (Toronto) and Stacey Roy (Kelowna), and the American Tull brothers.
So far, the challenges have included creating a LEGO bull-riding character to mount an actual mechanical bull, a “Guardians of the Galaxy” build, a LEGO tree house with real trees, and more.
Both in their mid-30s, the Guedes siblings had a lot of fun filming “LEGO Masters” and also watching the episodes on TV over the past couple of months.
“Filming the show was so much fun,” David said, “but I’m really enjoying watching it now. Despite knowing what happened when we were there on set, you don’t know how it’s going to be portrayed on television and what happened with the other teams. When we were there we were so focused on what we were building, we didn’t see what everyone else was building.
David, known as Lettuce in the LEGO world, has been building with the bricks all his life, “though he had a ‘dim age’ in his teens, and didn’t buy any new sets for six years,” according to a bio on brothers-brick.com.
In recent years he’s displayed LEGO creations at conventions, and lives in the Clayton area with his wife, two sons, a dog and a couple million little plastic bricks. He’s “Dave, the one with the beard” on social media, via linktr.ee/bricklettuce.
David recalls a childhood in Maple Ridge with lots of LEGO around, starting with a big bucket of hand-me-down bricks when Emily was a baby. Now she works as a hospital unit clerk, and he’s a Learning Centre supervisor at Douglas College.
“She’s a great teammate,” David said. “We get along better than anyone else.”
This season of LEGO Masters started Sept. 21 with 24 contestants competing in pairs, with a “Holiday Bricktacular” special to air Dec. 19-21, days after the Dec. 14 season finale.
First, the semi-finalists have 10 hours to build a fountain that uses water. Then the three remaining teams have 24 hours to build their best creation possible. In a final twist, they’re given gift bags with the first sets they built as kids, to celebrate 90 years of LEGO. Watch episodes on fox.com/lego-masters.
Next up for the Guedes siblings is a BrickCan LEGO convention at Richmond’s River Rock Casino from April 20-23.
“I’ll display there as well as Emily and some others from the show,” David reported. “We get together any chance we get, at conventions all over the place.”
- with files from Neil Corbett, Black Press Media