Get ready, reality TV fans. The Block is coming back for an incredible 19th season, which just might turn out to be the most innovative and electrifying yet.
State vs state
Strap in for plenty of state rivalry as Season 19 of The Block pits five couples against each other, battling it out to bring glory to their home states of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.
And, in a move that looks set to send this year's contestants on a journey through hell and back, all teams are to be given the arduous task of creating secondary accommodation on their properties. The additional roomage is sure to add value to each home, but could the extra work that comes with it push one couple over the edge?
Location, location, location
Set in Melbourne's family-friendly suburb of Hampton East, this year's season features another special treat for viewers: five houses designed and built in the 1950s. Located on the aptly named Charming Street, these "grand old dames" are now all in their 70s and well overdue for a makeover.
Will these fresh-faced contestants be up to the challenge? The five couples in contention for Block glory in 2023 are:
Personal assistant Eliza (37) and integration producer Liberty Paschke (34) – sisters from VIC
Firefighter Kyle (36) and teaching aide Leslie Cottone (34) – parents from WA
First aid officer Leah (32) and builder Ash Milton (38) – parents from QLD
Project manager Kristy (34) and safety officer Brett Beams (34) – married from SA
Architect Steph (27) and start-up worker Gian Ottavio (27) – married from NSW
Get to know more about the contestant here.
Scott Cam promises a 'blockbuster'
Gold Logie-winning host Scott Cam, excited to be back for his 19th series of The Block, is promising a season like no other. "This series is guaranteed to be a dead-set blockbuster," he said. "Our five new teams from across the country are all fired up to make their home states proud."
"But wait until you see their shock when they find out they're building not one, but two new abodes, as we throw in a granny flat for good measure," Scott added.
"And in a Block first, this year we give all teams their full building schedule ahead of time.
"Buckle up Australia. The Block 2023 offers more twists, turns and curve-balls than ever before."
Long-time co-host Shelley Craft is also super excited for Season 19, saying this year's time warp back to the 1950s creates the perfect setting for surprise. "This series' houses may seem charming on the surface," Shelley says, "But our contestants will be in for a shock as they uncover a host of pitfalls not evident upon first inspection."
However, while there will be plenty of laughs to be had, viewers can expect an equal number of tears, according to Shelley.
For the first time in over a decade, a new judge will be joining Shaynna Blaze, Darren Palmer and Neale Whitaker on the show. Real estate expert and double block-house seller, Marty Fox, will be tag-teaming judging on Sunday nights, as Whitaker takes a small step back this season.
This year also marks 20 years since the first series in Bondi went to air, changing the Australian television landscape forever. Executive Producer Julian Cress, who created the show way back then with fellow EP David Barbour, says The Block's 20-year birthday is a notable achievement.
"We thought we were pretty lucky to get the show on air in the first year we made it," Cress admits. "Just getting The Block commissioned was a huge achievement and there is no way we thought we would still be here making the show 20 years later.
"But the great thing about it is," Cress adds, "We all still love making the show, and no two series are ever the same."
Season 19 of The Block starts Sunday 6 August on Channel 9 and 9Now.
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