Holiday Wars review: Did Santa leave this team a lump of coal?


Only two teams can make the Holiday Wars finale. Which team received a lump of coal from Santa and which two teams received the ultimate holiday present?

Is there a gift waiting for these Holiday Wars teams? While each team has found ways to impress the judges, each team is only as good as their last display. Could one single design decision cause a team to miss out on the finale?

This season of Holiday Wars has been quite impressive. From perfect sugar work to creative interpretation of themes, these teams have stepped up their game. While only two teams can make the finale, it will be a hard decision to send on team home.

To kick off this second to last episode of the season, the Snowball Fight challenge had an idea that any parent understands. How can you keep kids away from peaking at those holiday presents?

The three teams’ visions of a Christmas gift security system are totally different. In a way, the judges were looking for something very dynamic in this challenge. Only one team created that particular idea.

Candy Stripers had an interesting idea, but the overall look was too industrial. While the locked box and gears made sense, the execution was slightly off. It just didn’t really appear holiday-like.

Team Ginger Snappers work to create a Nutcracker Guard during the “Ultimate Christmas Gift Security System” challenge during the Snowball Fight, as seen on Holiday Wars, Season 1. photo provided by Food Network

Ginger Snappers had a great toy soldier guard, but the placement of the nutcracker was wrong. Nutcracker are always standing. Even the super detailed face and expression couldn’t make up for incorrect placement.

Winning the Snowball Fight was Bah Hum Bakers. Their honey badger looked fierce with the curled nails and expression. Although it wasn’t necessarily perfection, it was creative and the best executed display.

While Bah Hum Bakers had a little bit of a slow start, they have been on a roll. From smart design choices to good execution, they have really found their way. Going into the Winter Blizzard, they seemed to have a strong chance to go to the finale.

For the Winter Blizzard, the teams had to create a display that showed Santa’s side hustle. Have you ever wondered what Santa does the other 11 months of the year? While he might get 11 months of vacation, it could be more likely that he has another secret job.

Probably one of the silliest, but creative ideas, came from Bah Hum Bakers. The idea that Santa runs a reindeer yoga studio could be a new fitness trend. Everyone knows that Santa eats lots of cookies on Christmas Eve. It makes sense that he needs to workout after the holidays.

Looking at the display, this team really nailed the execution. From the dynamic movement to the varied poses, it really was quite impressive. While reindeer yoga might not ever happen, it was a great visual.

Additionally, their tasting element was amazing. The chocolate chip cookie with toasted marshmallow filling was probably one of the best bites of the season. The cookie was crisp and the filling was luscious. This team set themselves up for a spot in the finale.

The Candy Stripers had the best sugar work. Pouring crystal clear pieces of sugar is incredibly difficult. While the sugar work was amazing, one element of the display did not work, the perspective.

The backboard was too large for the display. In a way, the ice cream shop made Santa look like an elf. Add to the off perspective, the splatters on the floor and the hidden mice made the display out of sorts.

In contrast, their tasting element was delicious. Although a brownie/cookie combination has been done, the idea of dropping cookie dough whole into the brownie batter was smart. It created different textures and kept each component unique.

The Ginger Snappers had some amazing elements in their display and a few elements that were confusing. The idea that Santa has a side job as a children’s performer makes sense. The story was very engaging.

The characters all had their own personality and were vibrant. But, there were a few missteps. Santa was a little rough around the edges. Still, the layers and the dimension made the display work.

Unfortunately, Ginger Snappers had the worst tasting element. Although the concept of a bananas foster egg roll could have been amazing, the egg roll wrapper was too thick. Additionally, the dessert needed more sweetness.

In the end, it was clear that Bah Hum Bakers won and secured their spot in the finale. This season, this team has risen from bottom to top. It will be interesting to see if they can continue the winning ways in the finale.

The remaining Holiday Wars finale spot was a toss-up. The judges chose to send Ginger Snappers to the finale. Since their display was overall better, they earned the spot (even with a bad tasting element).

Who will win the Holiday Wars title? It will depend on which team executes better. All those little details will really matter in the finale.

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Do you think that the judges made the right decision? Which team do you think will win Holiday Wars?