Posted by: Lauren on Jul 9, 2011
Last week, Miranda and Robert (he of the woo!) were eliminated. This wasn’t really a shocker, though I do think there are some girls left that weren’t as talented as Miranda (Ashley and Caitlynn among them). Still, I don’t think Miranda was destined for the top 4 or anything, so it isn’t a big deal.
Guest judges tonight are Carmen Electra and Travis Wall (a former competitor on SYTYCD). Carmen is a bit of a let down after the great K. Chenoweth, but who could top that singing wonder? No one.
Guys’ Group Routine: Choreographed by Justin Giles (who is new to the show).
This group number is inspired by the “7 stages of grief”. I think that is usually the 5 stages, but whatever. It is super boring to start. Just a bunch of dudes standing around doing angsty movements. It finally picks up with some synchronized stuff, which is mildly better.
Melanie and Marko: Jazz routine by Ray Leeper (hilarious dance name)
They really love to put Melanie in bushy skirts. The dance is a little bit strange, and not my favourite of the ones they have done so far, but it is still very good. Melanie dances with such emotion in her face, that I can’t help but watch her. Travis tells Melanie that she is his favourite dancer in the competition, and I agree. I always look forward to these routines. Mary commends the pair’s passion. Nigel tells us that their technique matches the performance, which is also true. The choreographer, Ray, is sweating more than the spent dancers.
Sasha and Alexander: Hip Hop by Shaun Evariso
Alex struggles to have the correct amount of “swag” in the rehearsals. In the dance, I see what they were talking about. Alex has a lot of control and grace in his body, but it comes off much too fluid and smooth for a hip hop routine. Not being comfortable in a player role, his side of the routine comes off a little Howdy Doody. Sasha is great, as usual. Mary didn’t love the routine…no connection between the dancers. Nigel agrees and says that it seemed like hip hop 101. Travis thinks they need to work on their musicality, but that Sasha did better than Alex. I am pretending Carmen isn’t here.
Jordan and Tadd: Waltz by Toni Redpath
You know it is a waltz because they have brought out the fog machine. I don’t know what I think about the dance. It is pretty boring, but waltzes tend toward the boring. Mary tells us hilarious things about the history of the waltz—when it was invented in the 1800s it was a scandalous (read, whore-y) dance where people were shocked that you would almost touch knees with a member of the opposite sex. Mary says that they did the waltz well, in that they had rise and fall and romance. Nigel praises Tadd for his work out of his genre. Travis tells them they could have been smoother here and there, but on the whole he was impressed. Carmen is as useful as a foam bat.
Clarice and Jess: Contemporary by Justin Giles
This routine is made up of very precise and hard movements (similar to those in the guys’ group number), but I like it better than I liked that one. It works with just the two people, and the intensity between them really makes it strong. Travis really liked the routine, but still gives Clarice some good feedback for improvement. Nigel liked the honest emotion of the routine. Carmen just says what the other judges said. Mary likes where this partnership is going, and how they are growing.
Ashley and Chris: Salsa by Liz Lira
Is it just me or does Chris look like Marc Anthony and John Leguizamo’s (Mr. Lesqueezamo, if you watched the Tony’s) love child? He has that skeletal thing going in the face. This salsa is supposed to be pretty difficult, so we will see how they do. How they do is rather poor. The energy of the dance wanes at times, and they just look like amateurs, not pros. Chris in particular seems to struggle to keep up with the music and the steps. Ashley does slightly better, but it isn’t great. Travis thought it started strong, but when they weren’t in hold, the dance suffered. Carmen is useless. Mary is reluctant to put them on the hot tamale train, because they weren’t intense enough. My viewing partner and I decided that Ashley looked like Baby Houseman doing the Mambo at The Sheldrake hotel…she just wasn’t sure of herself.
Ryan and Ricky: Jazz by Chucky Klapow (Chucky? Really?)
Ok, this week I see a glimmer of what the judges were going on and on about last week. This is an odd zombie jazz routine, but I find it interesting and have respect for their dancing this week. They sold the weird stuff in a way that Ashley and Chris failed to do last week. Ryan is wearing a gigantic blonde 80s wig and it is distracting—like a character unto itself. Mary loved how they got into the characters and sold the odd side of it. Nigel liked how they were synchronized on many levels. Travis says it held his attention and praises their strength in some of the movements.
Caitlynn and Mitchell: Contemporary by Mandy Moore
Yeesh…contemporary routine to Celine Dion. That is a big strike against right out of the gate. The routine is sometimes shot with a camera that is circling around the dancers and it is distracting (and makes it hard to see how they are using their space). It was well-danced and had a lot of emotion to it, and the audience goes bonkers for it. The judges give it a full-out standing O, which is a bit crazy. Mary says it was her favorite of the night. She loses her shit crying, which isn’t uncommon. Nigel loved the emotion of the dance and the amazing lifts. Travis was blown away by the choreography and the lifts as well.
Girls’ Group Routine: Jazz by Ray Leeper
The girls are dancing in lingerie and the routine is very slow and sultry. It is always cool to watch when this many talented dancers get to do something fun like this. It is also a nice opportunity to compare them side by side. Melanie and Ryan stand out to me, but they both have unique looks in the group, so that is part of it.
- Four judges is too many. We don’t need four critiques—they end up saying the same thing again and again (and Carmen really didn’t contribute anything tonight).
- Travis Wall was my favourite guest judge so far…his specific critiques were interesting and helpful, and he really knows this world.
- This was a very entertaining show. There were a bunch of people who surprised me tonight, and that is always fun.
- The boys vs. girls rhetoric is getting a bit old on this show. Time to find a new arc, producers!
- Favourite routines of the night are Clarice and Jess’s contemporary (surprisingly) and Caitlynn and Mitchell’s lifty contemporary.
- Least Favourites are hip hop by Sasha and Alexander and that dull samba by Chris and Ashley. I would say that Sasha is pretty safe, but the other three should think about packing their suitcases.
They are the fuel that powers her! I'm waiting for the use of "it's all coming back to me now" becaue you know that s**t will put Mary into hysterics.
Also, have you noticed how they keep sending couples home? They have not split up a couple yet.