Part of the thrill with watching The Hustle lies in the extreme unpredictability of the show.

One moment a hustler is being touted as an early favourite to possibly make it all the way through, next thing they are sent packing.

Although unexpected eliminations sometimes send temperatures through the roof both in the mansion and for many viewers watching and interacting with the content on our social platforms, it’s nothing personal.

On the season premiere episode, the judges made it very clear that they will be taking no shabbinnes this time. Hustlers are expected to deliver their finest work consistently through the challenges, or face losing out on an incredible opportunity to have their careers launched at the highest possible level.

Three episodes in, we have watched the hustlers ducking all kinds of daggers. A handful has already gone, while a few continue facing the lurking threat of imminent elimination. Watching the show as we all do Mondays at 19:30 on VUZU AMP, DStv channel 103, we’ve spotted a few mistakes some of the hustlers make.

PANIC 

Every single hustler that has made it to the mansion did so solely based on their distinguishable talent. Yet, writing songs at home and having to nail different hectic challenges are not exactly the same thing. How sad is it to watch talented individuals drown in their own hysteria? Too many have hit the floor simply because they could not overcome stage fright. In this business, no one has time to entertain blank moments, as would Eminem attest on the track Lose Yourself.

OVERTHINKING

And as the judges keep warning, let creative flow. Overthinking is quite rife in this competition, as the rappers must produce their best work to stand out or find themselves on the chopping block. We’ve all seen how this sometimes results in overthinking and doing too much. In the end, failure to refine one’s ideas tends to result in mediocre deliveries. Except in the few cases when lack of preparation can open the door for good things to happen in the world of art. On The Hustle, the stakes are high. Risking it like that has undermined too many people’s hustle.

TRYING TOO HARD 

Also related to overthinking, trying too hard normally comes across as trying too hard. It’s quite interesting sometimes watching hustlers who’ve ‘got this’ start trying to do too much to impress the judges. Often, this ends badly. You first draft of the verse was award winning, but the final product became an insult. Why, why why!?

MISSING THE BRIEF

Each challenge comes with different specs. Those who do not pay careful attention to what has been required have all left, already.

PLAYING IT SAFE

While overthinking is not ideal for the creative process, doing things by the book is the easiest way to bore everyone to death. A hustler may stay safe for a few episodes doing things by the book, but the question of ‘who are you really as artist’ tends to come so unexpectedly. We’ve also seen how the lack of having a strong, unique point of view normally ends in the most shocking eliminations.

The Hustle airs on Mondays at 19:30 on VUZU AMP, DStv channel 103.

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