The Block: Biggest scandals over the years

·Contributor
·5-min read

The Block is about to kick off again and while you might think the teams would be too focused on the hard work of getting their build done to a high standard, that is far from the case.

The new season was barely three days into filming when one couple quit the show unexpectedly. Former AFL footballer Joel Patfull and his fiancé, influencer Elle Ferguson, pulled out in controversial circumstances.

The couple claims they left to care for Joel's mum, who had a nasty fall, but The Block's executive producer and host Scott Cam have since refuted their claims, saying that the pair simply decided the show wasn't for them.

But this isn't the first time that contestants have created chaos for the show.

Last year had only just started when there were accusations of cheating.

Country singer Kirsty dobbed on NSW twins Josh and Luke for getting their builders to help with the painting, contravening the rules of the game.

That's just one of many times teams have been accused of cheating and much worse.

Here we count down the top scandals ever to have happened on The Block.

Teams copied shoot schedule to gain the advantage

The Block contestants Tanya and Josh and Luke
A photo of the show's production schedule came back to haunt two teams in the 2021 season of The Block. Photo: Channel 9

Luke and Josh were embroiled in an even bigger scandal than having their builders help to paint last year after it was revealed that the twins had a photograph of the show's production schedule. This meant that they knew exactly what order rooms would be completed in, and the dates of challenges.

Luke and Josh were quick to reveal that fellow contestant Tanya was the one that gave them the picture, meaning she and hubby Vito also had an advantage over other contestants.

Tanya denied taking the photo, saying that a crew member had sent it to her, but she eventually came clean, breaking down in tears as she admitted to her major role in the scandal.

"I want to apologise and take ownership of my part in this tumultuous road that I took, it was a long and painful bendy path, one I paved for myself and only have myself to blame," she said at the time.

"It was a fear-based decision and when you're fearful you're irrational and when you're irrational you make stupid choices and then you dig a whole so deep that it's hard to crawl back out," she went on to say.

"I have regrets and so much that I could say about this season but all I really want to say is 'Sorry', we let so many people down."

Scotty Cam punished both teams with a two point deduction and changed the filming and building schedule to remove the advantage the teams had gained.

Bianca and Carla cheat not once but twice

Carla and Bianca on The Block
Former netballers Carla and Bianca renovated a penthouse in the 2018 season of The Block and were known for bending the rules sometimes. Photo: Channel 9

Netball champions Bianca and Carla were very popular in the 2018 season of The Block - but not with fellow contestants Sara and Hayden. The girls first broke the rules when they bribed a tradie to use a crane to winch up some timber with a case of beer. All the contestants had specifically been told they could not make use of the crane.

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They then went on to get busted for severely underpaying for lighting for their apartment to stay on budget, with Scottie Cam explaining that contestants must pay at least 50% of the retail value of an item.

"We're happy to pay what we need to pay," Bianca said on the show. "We're not trying to get away with anything, we're more than happy to pay extra for the lights that we have in here." With Carla adding that they just trusted the amount the sales assistant gave them and didn't double-check numbers.

"They're dirty! You'd think as professionals in the sports industry they'd follow the rules, but they keep breaking them and getting caught," Sara told TV Week. "I couldn't trust them as far as I could throw them!"

Copying room designs off other designers

The Block 2020 Luke and Jasmin's kid's room
The Block 2020 Luke and Jasmin's kid's room and their 'inspiration' Barefoot Bay Villa Byron Bay by design firm The Designory. Photo: Instagram/@theblock & The Designory

Jasmin and Luke got into hot water last year when they were accused of copying the design for their winning kid's room.

While the couple defended the similarities saying they took inspiration from another designer, Shaynna Blaze was less than impressed.

“You’re calling it inspiration. Inspiration is one thing. Completely taking someone’s idea and making it your own is another,” Shaynna said. “We’re in a competition, and you won a room where you make money. You haven’t changed it up enough.”

Winning bidder never paid up

The Block's Jimmy and Tam and the winning bidder Emese Fajk.
The Block 2020 winners Jimmy and Tam and the winning bidder for their property Emese Fajk. Photo: Instagram/@theblock & Channel 9

It's usually the contestants that cause the problems but in 2020, it was the winning buyer that created the controversy. At the nail-biting auction, Jimmy and Tam's house made a record-breaking $966,000 profit taking their overall winnings to $1.06million.

However, they allegedly never got a payment from cybersecurity specialist Emese Fajk whose winning bid was $4,256,000. Emese, who has since left Australia for Europe claims she was naive when it came to purchasing the property.

"My fault in all this was that I did not know the purchase process and therefore was unable to spot mistakes or know what information was missing," she said in a video she made while in Portugal.

"I'm a 29-year-old girl building my own life and I will not continue to suffer in silence and let this hang above my head as some sort of dark cloud," she added.

Only time will tell if this year's contestants will bring more drama during the show or create it after the show is over!

The Block: Fans v Faves Sundays at 7pm and Monday - Wednesday 7.30pm on Channel 9

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