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The Block

The Block explodes as Mitch and Mark accuse Jesse and Mel of copying another apartment

Inside the fight that will tear The Block apart!

By Zara Zubeidi
The battle lines are well and truly drawn on The Block this week when Mitch and Mark accuse Jesse and Mel of copying another apartment.
In a radio chat with former Blockhead Jess Eva, the stylish grandads reveal Jesse and Mel's home shares an uncanny amount of similarities to a Saint Moritz display unit in St Kilda, where real estate agent Jesse has sold properties in the past.
"It's not a case of a likeness," Mitch exclaims. "It just looks totally copied!"
When later confronted over the copying and "cheating" allegations, Jesse angrily alleges that the whole scandal is a set up, which leads to a heated on-camera conversation with the show's executive producer.
Things escalate even further when Jesse and Mel confront Mitch over the allegations.
"I saw a side to [Mitch and Mark] I haven't seen. I think they've done pretty well to disguise their true colours this far into the competition," Jesse explains.
Mitch says the "ambush" came out of nowhere and left him feeling "absolutely shattered".
"I was distraught," he explains to TV WEEK. "They painted me as a total villain."
Mitch and Mark note the similarities between the St Moritz display unit and Jesse and Mel's home.
According to Mitch and Mark, Jesse and Mel just wanted to stir up drama to deflect from the fact they'd copied another property's interior design.
"They chose to trash me and make themselves look like victims," Mitch explains.
Meanwhile, Mel, who considered Mitch and Mark to be great friends, was particularly upset by what she considered to be a betrayal.
"It broke me," she reveals. "I was really upset and really hurt. The trust was gone after that."
Mitch and Mark stand by their view that Jesse and Mel have copied the design of another house, but insist they never accused the pair of "cheating".
They point out that Jesse and Mel have the same chevron flooring, marble covered exhaust, double doors and light fitting as the display unit at Saint Moritz.
"We never said anything about cheating or that it wasn't in the rules," Mark explains. "We're always happy to say you can be 'inspired' by something. But this [Jesse and Mel's apartment] was an exact copy."
Jesse and Mel confront Mitch.
Former Block star Jess, who is caught up in the centre of the drama, is of a similar mindset.
"As far as I know, you can take a little inspiration but not a direct copy," she explains. "I really like Jesse but bloody hell mate, change the paint colour or something! You've got to use a bit of creativity."
Jesse and Mel continue to insist they haven't cheated.
"How is it any different to walking into an art gallery and buying a piece of artwork for your house?" Jesse says. "Every single interior designer takes inspiration from around the world."
For Jesse and Mel, the fall-out serves as proof that Mitch and Mark are there to "play the game".
"I felt sick to my stomach," Jesse explains. "They tore El'ise to shreds in the last Body Corporate meeting, took the moral high ground and brought her integrity into question.
Then to find out they're the ones who have no morals or ethics… I thought it was appalling. They contradict themselves with the way they behave."
Jesse has a heated conversation with a producer.
The Block airs Monday to Wednesday, 7.30pm, and Sunday, 7pm, on Nine Network.

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