The Block is Back | Girls vs Boys

It's ba-aack! The Block 2016 is set to hit our screens this Sunday 29th May at 7pm on TV3, and we will be bringing you a room round-up and our thoughts each week. Things are a little different this year with four sets of friends, no couples, and it's girls vs boys. I'm really interested to see how that pans out as the dynamics will be quite different - will romances bloom, will the girls embrace the power tools, and the boys the shops? We shall see, right now let's meet the teams...

Niki (29) and Tiff (35) are friends who met as fellow bridesmaids at a friend's wedding. Niki is a forensic research scientist with a Phd based in Christchurch. Although her serious job requires her to be calm and rational, Niki is charismatic and the life of the party. Currently living in Melbourne, but originally from Wanaka, Tiff is a set dresser and buyer for film and TV. She is the creative half of the duo and is used to fulfilling a client's creative brief, which will hopefully make up for the lack of renovation skills and experience in this team.

The other female team is made up of Emma (27) and Courtney (25), both from Dunedin. Inseparable since they met four years ago, Emma lives in the spare room of the house that Courtney shares with her fiancé. Emma has a background in admin and, having worked for the Otago Rugby Union, she's used to being in a male dominated environment. Courtney works for a homeware and interior design business, so she should have a great handle of what pieces work together and I'm predicting some interior flair from her. Both girls come from rural backgrounds so they're not afraid to muck in.

From beauty to braun, Dyls (27) and Dylz (25) will have no problem when it comes to demo and building. Dyls is a qualified builder from Mount Maunganui with an enormous amount of renovation experience. Dylz was formerly a personal trainer, but now works as Dyls' apprentice. He has less renovating experience, but there's no doubt these guys will be able to save a lot of money on trades. But how will they go with the design side? Dylz has put his hand up for cushion buying, and has been swotting up. I'm sure these guys will provide a few laughs this series, as they love a bit of banter and may be the practical jokers of the season.

Last, but certainly not least, Sam (29) and Emmett (29) have been friends since school in Palmerston North. They now flat together in Aro Valley in Wellington (my first flat was at the bottom of Aro Street - what an experience that was for a wide-eyed 18 year old!). Sam is a business development manager, a sport lover, and, in his own words, "polite to a fault". Emmett is a farm boy, used to hard work, who now works as an HR advisor. Also mad on sport, Emmett has slightly more reno experience than Sam, often helping his builder brother with his own home renovation. These two also like a laugh, and don't mind if it's at their own expense, so I think this season will definitely keep us entertained.

Also new this season are the judges, Paul Izzard and Fiona McLeod. Paul is the founder of leading New Zealand architecture and design firm IZZARD with over 20 years experience in the business. Fiona is a freelance interior designer who has been in the business since 2002. These two will judge the teams' journey as they tackle what are arguably the ugliest Block houses yet - four 1980's town houses in the bustling residential suburb of Meadowbank, Auckland. So, come on Block-aholics, get ready to choose your favourite team and get behind them. Then join us each week for our thoughts and tips.