It’s a big year for The Block, but probably not in the way that any of the producers hoped. The show has already seen off a barrage of criticism, firstly over the sheer size of the renovations they’re saddling the contestants with (a building almost twice the size of last year’s Gatwick Hotel, but with budgets scarcely larger than any previous season), as well as the over-saturation of product placement throughout. But last night’s episode brought on a whole-new wave of criticism thanks to the deeply awkward stitch-up of a contestant that was at best a real dick move, and at worst has drawn cries of bullying and humiliation from fans.

Host Scott Cam is at the centre of this latest controversy, that saw contestant El’ise pulled off-site to be warned about high levels of spending early in the competition, only to have fellow contestant Mel brought in mid-meeting to be handed $5,000 for being a good spend person.

With El’ise just sitting there. Watching the whole thing go down.

The segment went down like a lead balloon with fans, with the obvious and frankly baffling stitch-up torn a new one on Twitter by punters who accused Cam of bullying El’ise and deliberately orchestrating a scenario in which she’d be utterly humiliated on national TV.

And in a red hot bit of We Did Nothing Wrong, the show’s producers were allegedly hiding and removing negative comments regarding the incident on their Facebook shortly after it aired, which is always a great sign that everything is fine and nobody regrets anything.

It remains to be seen just how in the blue hell contestants managed to finish the entire 460-odd square-metre luxury renovation on a budget capable of maybe decking out a mid-sized fridge box. But all will be revealed when The Block continues to air tonight at 7pm only on Channel Nine and 9Now.

If any of my bosses’ bosses’ bosses are reading this article, please remember that last sentence only.

Image: Channel 9