The drama on Mina Starsiak Hawk’s new HGTV spinoff series, “Good Bones: Risky Business,” is so over-the-top that fans have been complaining on social media that it has to be fake. The star has now addressed their skepticism, particularly about the ways her initial crew treated her, and insists the unexpected twists and turns were all real. Here’s the latest…
Fans Blast Contractor’s Behavior Toward Starsiak Hawk
In “Good Bones: Risky Business,” the real estate agent and renovation expert took on her largest remodeling project yet, transforming a run-down Indianapolis mansion in the Fountain Square neighborhood.
On a typical episode of her primary show, “Good Bones,” the renovation budget is around $300,000 for a home that’s 1,200 to 1,400 square feet. But the “Risky Business” series follows her remodeling a 6,700 square feet property with a budget that ballooned to over $1.2 million.
And rather than use her typical crews, who were already swamped with projects for “Good Bones” and the Two Chicks and a Hammer company she runs with her mom, Karen E. Laine, the star said she had to hire other contractors, including a site superintendent named Thomas, which did not go well.
From the start, the project Starsiak Hawk thought would take eight weeks was delayed due to permits, then a miscommunication resulted in potential city fines, and many viewers couldn’t believe how condescending Thomas was in their often-tense discussions. Thomas walked off the job site at one point, and eventually left the project altogether, leaving Starsiak Hawk in a lurch.
Fans flooded a post on HGTV’s Instagram feed, stunned by and skeptical of the ensuing drama. Many viewers were appalled by the ways Thomas and other men on the crew treated Starsiak Hawk.
“I can’t get over the mansplainig Mina is getting. She is paying them,” one person wrote.
Another wrote, “Mina, if you were a man, Thomas would never have gotten away with the way he treated you. There is definitely something wrong with him.”
One woman commented, “I loved watching this episode with my husband! He finally gets ‘mansplaining’ and saw first hand what women in business have to deal with on the daily! He was so frustrated and angry that he was still talking about it at breakfast!”
On a Reddit thread about the spinoff, a viewer wrote, “As a woman who has renovated a house, it feels so much more like what my experience was (guys actively talking down to me, aggression when I caught sketchy issues, attempts to deny parts of written scope etc). As a whole, it always kills me that the shows have to manufacture drama when there’s plenty of natural situations.”
“Having done over 70 projects as an investor I can sympathize with Mina. It’s HER money on the line and they should be doing the project that she wants,” another person wrote. “It seems like because Mina is a woman they totally disrespected her. Also, for a contractor to just walk off the job, ON CAMERA, is not a good look for him when he want to do business in that city. I’ve seen contractors almost come to blows and it’s usually not one thing, but like the case with Mina and her contractor, it’s start to build up.”
Starsiak Hawk Addresses Comments & Shares New Details
On the evening of September 20, 2022, Starsiak Hawk took to Instagram Live to address questions about her spinoff series.
She said she’d noticed lots of people on her “Good Bones” Facebook group raising questions about whether all that drama was real. Similar comments popped up on Instagram, too.
One person wrote, “This is painful to watch! The unprofessional communication is making me cringe. hopefully this is just drama they created for the show”
Another wrote, “Thomas is serving it right back to her…. this is probably scripted and edited for her, but his role is awesome…”
Starsiak Hawk said none of the drama was scripted.
“Everyone thinks it’s fake because it’s so bad,” she said in her Instagram Live. “Like, it’s so bad. The level of misogyny and, just like…what was happening!?”
She continued, “Y’all, I wish with every ounce in my body that that 14-month project was all, you know, made dramatic for filming purposes, but that was not the case. Thomas was really that guy.”
The mom of two, whose two-year-old daughter Charlotte and four-year-old son Jack were loudly playing while she spoke, revealed that Thomas reached out via text after the first episode aired.
“He actually texted me the first week after that first episode aired, and was like ‘hey, some friends saw me on the show. Hope the house turned out great, you know, sorry it was such a crapshoot.’ And I was like, ‘yeah, bro, thanks.'”
As for another male contractor, Martin, who was brought onto the project, Starsiak Hawk said, “I actually felt really bad for him because he got dumped in the middle of this sh** show. And every time I asked him a question, he’s like ‘I don’t know, I’ll figure it out, I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know.’ Because he didn’t know! He had been, like, drafted in the middle with really no control from the general contractor. Just kind of put there to, you know, babysit. So, he really didn’t have a fair fight to probably put his best foot forward, unfortunately.”
Starsiak Hawk said that not only was all the drama real, but they couldn’t even show all of it on-camera.
“Obviously, you see that the project goes south,” she said. “There’s a lot of liability on the production teams and the network to, you know, product a product that’s real without being, you know, slanderous or anything like that. So, so much had to be cut out. So, so much.”
“Good Bones: Risky Business” airs Tuesdays at 9pm Eastern and Pacific. Fans who want to see the end result before the finale airs can rent the finished mansion and carriage house via Airbnb for $1400 a night or rent the completed carriage house alone for $960 a night.