SYTYCD s.7: broken

Lauren 'n' the dudes - rose among thorns

There is a cloud hanging over SYTYCD this season.  In three weeks, 3 dancers have been injured to the point of not dancing.  We’ll see if Billy Bell will leave tomorrow and be the 3rd dancer to leave the show due to injury this season.

I was never into Billy, but I did see him do something with Lauren that was quite good.  I don’t remember much about it, other than the fact that Lauren makes her partners better – incredibly better.  She did it with Jose, too, I think.  Since Alex is gone, I can’t really get into anyone but Lauren.  I think I want her to win just cuz she’s the only girl left.  But also because she’s really awesome.

Having all-stars on this season has served the show well, but I think it’s obvious that dancing with fellow contestants can sometimes make better art, simply because the shared experience develops a camaraderie that shows up in a connection on the stage.  Lauren’s done well with the all-stars she’s worked with, but many of the guys have floundered, in my opinion.

I think I’m figuring out the issues with Tabitha and Napoleon.  They do well choreographing lyrical hip-hop.  So when they take that road, it usually serves everyone well.  But when they try just straight up hip-hop it comes off forced – faked – a poor substitution for the real thing.  It’s really obvious when it’s held up next to decent Dave Scott pieces [SO glad he’s back, but still missing Shane Sparks].  That was completely clear in the Twitch/Lauren number tonight.  The judges don’t know hip-hop from a hole in the ground, so their critiques are meaningless for me when it comes to hip hop.  [Besides, T&N could get up there and pee on the stage and Nigel would just sit and talk about how they have such a knack from bringing the streets to the mainstream in a way people can understand and relate to.]

note – I guess Robert isn’t getting the kick up from Lauren, that he could’ve gotten.  The judges seemed to like it, except for Mia who apparently wants to shoot “ssss!” from her boobs at Lauren.  To me, tho, Robert was too stiff and looked fake through his shimmy.

Adechike and Jose could’ve totally been better if Jose was replaced with some other guy – I SO wanted Jose to leave last week.  I thought Adechike was light years ahead of Jose.  And I’ve never been a fan of Adechike.  He did ok in his piece with Comfort tonight, tho.

::moment of silence please::

First stepping routine on the show is given to Billy Bell and Kent Boyd – the whitest boys on this show since Benji and Neil.  Does this make anyone else nervous?  Since Billy was out of the running due to a funky knee injury, Twitch stepped in. Kent was 100% better than I thought he would be.  I have to give him respect for that.  And Twitch (my man) was completely great.  Tonight’s dancing overall had hits and misses, but it was enjoyable, nonetheless.

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In other news, time is flying by and I have been feeling completely overwhelmed at work  – doing 2 other people’s jobs + my own is stressful enough – my last compadre is out for the rest of the week this week as well.  AACK!  Family sitch’s seems completely up in the air right now, I’m losing two more single friends to engagement and marriage this week, and I’m kind of in a funk.  I was a complete spendthrift last month and paying for it now – literally.  It’s difficult.  I dug a pretty big hole for myself.

Not to mention the world is fastly spinning into the proverbial handbasket, which apparently is signaled by great big racial faux pas in rapid succession [from Hollywood (Mel G) to the White House/Dept. of Ag. – effectively “from sea to shining sea”].  Panicky white folks are calling the NAACP racist because they have the word ‘colored’ in their name, the NAACP is calling black people racist because they saw an edited video some racist white person put together – it’s ridonkulous!

Oh and I’ve been having the CRAZiest dreams.  One night, an old friend decided to take things in a completely different direction – which I was totally into in the dream, but is kinda unsettling when I’m awake.  One night my boss and I were trying to train our new person – something weird was going on – something like – I dunno – the Apocalypse, I think.  One night the old friend who’d been randy the night or two before decided to study the Bible with me instead… And I haven’t even been eating anything weird before bed!

So – maybe the heat is getting to me.  Who knows?

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SYTYCD s.7: the year of the boy

just. beautiful.

Um.  Billy Bell is great in his solo, but actually, I can’t stand him.  Any other genre – there’s this cockiness that comes through.  But I think tonight the dancing has been pretty awesome:

Adechike and Lauren: hip-hop that threw us a nerdy curve and finally got Adechike’s personality on the floor.

Ashley and Ade: contemporary that tugged at my heart.  The connection between these two, made me watch this routine again. [shout-out DVR!]

Robert and Courteney: Sonia Tayeh jazz that totally fits those two – great quirks, great work.

Here’s where things got weird.  The girl I can’t stand – the one I think shouldn’t have even been on this season?  Melinda.  but I thought she actually did pretty well on the salsa.  She and Pasha shook their cares away, and she even extricated herself from her own dress.  And the judges crapped all over her, saying they made a mistake keeping her last week.

Well, duh.  Too late now, though.

And…um..just gotta say…Alex is the only fellow who consistently makes me say wow.  Out loud.  His ending for his solo was the best I’ve ever seen on SYTYCD.  Ever.

Lauren and Neal:  Lauren is a Broadway baby.  She pushed through a wardrobe malfunction and I thought she did well.

And now – I gotta say something about Meanie Michaels.  She’s talking about Melinda’s pigeon toes?  Then she says that Lauren’s gotta work on being more feminine because she’s “so athletic”?  Where do you even get off, Mia?

Billy [Blech] and Kathryn: Stacey Tookey’s concept and choreo were unbelievable.  Billy was obviously the technician in the beginning of the piece, but he got better.  Not great.  But um – what are the judges doing calling him the “most exciting things that’s happened to dance in a long time”?  His ego doesn’t need anymore inflating.

Jose and Anya: OMG.  That’s all I have to say.  The judges really wanna keep him, but wow, this was so ugly to watch.  I couldn’t.  Meanie went ahead and just told him that he wasn’t a good dancer.  This, I disagree with – he’s a good dancer, just not great at ballroom.  WTF?  He was somehow helped by coming from Miami???  I can tell you that living in Miami wouldn’t help me at all…

Kent and Allison:  Jazz by Mandy Moore.  I think Kent did all the moves, but I can’t be sure since I can never take my eyes off of Allison.  The only part that was really believable between the two of them was the very end.  It almost seemed like the choreo was just a joke.  I like Kent, but I think he’s just too green.

my two lovahs - being awesome together

Here I’d just like to take a moment and talk about how homophobic this show is.  Benji and Travis did a 2-dude routine  years ago (Season2) – what is the freakin’ big deal?  Why does every same-sex dance partnership have to be a big miration?  Because Nigel and Mia and Mary [these 3 in particular] have some serious issues with gender roles.  SERIOUS.  Give the dancers [and America] a break!  We’re not all as close-minded as you.

Alex and Twitch: Alex was a little stiff  at the beginning, but man when they got into it, he was straight up awesome.  And then it got even better, to the point where I was actually screaming.  Obviously, he was immensely helped by the hand-holding routine from Napoleon and Tabitha.  They tailored that piece to him, and while it wasn’t anything near ballet, it incorporated his strengths and his story to put him in the best light possible.  He was no slouch though.  He did those moves.  I still love Alex like crazy.  And I see no reason to stop.  I would marry him if it weren’t for that persistent idea that he might be gay.  And of course Twitch might get jealous, since he was my former betrothed.

2 hip-hoppers in the finale? what!

Twitch and Courtney open the show by taking us to ‘Church’ [T-Pain].  Tabitha and Napoleon choreographed this and it was ok.  The story of it was pretty good, considering Courtney plays a genius ‘deranged girlfriend’.  Best move?  When Twitch is on his hands [like, backwards], and Courtney climbs/walks across his body.  Awesome.

Courtney’s interview reminded me that she’s from Long Island.  Best part?  Her father saying ‘thereaftah’ in a video clip.  Her solo wasn’t her best, though.  She’s had better.  But how old is she?  20?  Wow – I thought she was younger [from her video].

Courtney’s not my fave girl.  If a girl wins, I want Katee.  I really don’t find Courtney “inspirational”.   I find Twitch and Joshua’s stories much more inspirational.

Katee and Joshua!!!  Wade Robson gives them a ‘love is hard work’ piece.  “Josh is my boo.” (Katee)  My heart is ripped from my chest with this piece.  John Mayer’s ‘Slow Dancing in a Burning Room’ is a great song.  I’ve loved it since I got the cd.  So I was connected to this.  And I loved this work.  Katee and Joshua are meant to be.  They should go on tour together – just them.  I can’t even pick out everything I loved about this.  AAAAHHHH!!!  [a la Mary]

Next up? Tyce, Broadway, and Katee and Courtney.  Clang.  Clang.  Clunk.  Clang #1 – cute outfits/cute story.  Clang #2 – great choreographer.  Clunk – the juxtaposition of Katee and Courtney starkly demonstrates the difference in talent.  Nigel thinks that no one else noticed – I’m no expert, but I noticed.

Twitch is my heart.  I don’t want him to win, but I love to see him tonight.  His favorite piece was the Viennese Waltz that was for Jean Marc’s daughter.  If Twitch was a politician he would win on that.  His solo is pretty cool, most of what we’re used to seeing from him – well-choreographed, etc.  But I felt like he got a little ahead of the music, right at the end.  Usually, though, Twitch’s solos are the best choreographed of anybody.

Twitch and Joshua have a chance to do a battle, and it’s a Russian dance by Youri Nelzine.  Huh?  Yeah.  I know.  And then I watched it.  At Joshua’s first jump up in the air, my mouth dropped open.  And stayed open.  These guys are ridic.  Pure life.  Unbelievable.  I don’t have words to really say what I want to say, here.  yabba dabba doo.  AACK!

Katee’s interview ~ y’all know they shouldn’t have given her all that grief about saying she wasn’t gonna come back.  Folks have to have careers or something to fall back on – right?  People have to live.  Yay, Katee!  Wow.  Contemporary dancers LOVE Imogen Heap, don’t they?  Her solo was kind of all over the place for me, but I love her when she’s choreographed.  Her earlier solos were much more powerful than those that have been more recent.

Twitch and Katee’s foxtrot was lovely, and I loved the lift.  Katee’s work was flawless [which goes without saying] and they were great together.  But uh…now I am screaming in my house.  Because he just said ‘The name’s Bond.  James Bond.’ and I am ready for a black James Bond, ok????  [We need to start a conversation about that, because why in the world do we not have a serial black spy hero?]

I’m going crazy.  This is SO my fave show.

I can see Josh doing well at whatever he puts his mind to.  Thank God he chose dance.  Luh dat boy.  And his behonkus really is something.  But I feel for all the untrained dancers coming on the show after him – cuz uh, who can live up to that?

Courtney and Joshua are doing the jive to close the show.  Er.  But I love Josh saying, “Can we practice it with people who know how to do it first?”  Out the gate, I HATE Courtney’s outfit.  But otherwise, this piece is pretty good.  It’s a very challenging routine, but it’s not my fave.  The choreographer seemed to have just kinda slammed a bunch of jive stuff together, but it was blech to me.  I have no idea about whether they could’ve done it better, but Nigel seems to think so.  Eh.  Whatev.

I am ready for the final four dancing together.  Mia Michaels choreographs [this is what she’s good at] – let’s see what’s up.  What kind of weird mess was that?  I don’t know, sometimes this contemporary stuff goes too deep for me.  I can’t get all that esoteric stuff.  It was just strange to me.  I think Twitch may have looked better in this piece because of his height.  And I think he had a little more time to recover than Joshua had.  I’m glad I wasn’t the only one to not get this piece.

Alright folks – vote Joshua! IV Real.

time of your life: final four chosen

I am actually really happy about the top 6 – even though I was sad to say goodbye to Will.  The opening number [The Rose ~ Mandy Moore, choreographer] was quite nice.

The solos are interesting in that the guys all seemed to really shine: Mark did some fancy work with suspenders (?!?), Joshua worked it out [with newly naked teeth] to an almost chopped and screwed Zapp’s ‘I Can Make You Dance’, and my hunnybunny [TWITCH!] made me smile once again with a lovely ‘Don’t Worry Be Happy’.  The girls?  Er.  Um.  Eh.

This lil 6 yr old they’ve got breakin to Planet Rock is adorable.  I couldn’t quite catch his name … Neal, maybe?

I’m kinda weirded out by this Lady GaGa person.  Are the 80s back?  I’ve never heard this song…and I don’t particularly like it.  And the hair is so obviously fake…is it supposed to be funny?

America just couldn’t choose a ballroom girl for the top two.  Not totally surprised.

Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it

I am not going to be good for anything else tonight.  [tho I’m a lil bit sad for Mark]

Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it Twitch made it

softening the blow

I was gonna be sad mad, no matter which guy left tonight, but it was a nice touch having LL performing on the show.  Is he getting younger?  …and finer?

not young, but same grin

not young, but same grin

Ok.  So, I’m alive, cuz Twitch is still on the show, but I cannot even believe that Will is gone and Mark is still there.  I totally thought Comfort and Mark were going home.

I’m actually pissed.

And I think I’ve nailed it: Twitch looks a lil like a young Common.  I love Common.  And I love his smile.

Twitch’s hat tonight had me all a-twitter.  And then when he broke down for a sec?  Just call me a sucker for a silly grin.

But honestly, I think Twitch is the best choreographer on the show.  His solos are always the best.

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Yay, Twitch is still here!

hey mickey – can you dance?

Toni Basil is guest judge this week, because -apparently- everyone else is on vacation.

Opening with Will and Courtney doing the samba was interesting.  I kinda felt like they weren’t really getting down into it, but it was fun to watch.  Some places, it was almost like they were posing.  But all-in-all, ok.

Comfort’s solo was quite lovely [though I hated her interview piece, beforehand].  I’ve heard rumors of folks saying that Sara [from last season] was better, and I have to pull out my Whitney on that: Hell-to-tha-naw!  Sara was cute, but she didn’t have it like Comfort.  Straight up.

Woo!  Katee and Twitch dancing together to a contemporary Mia Michaels piece.  Well, hush my mouth.  Wow.  Most definitely – as Nigel said – “One of the most entertaining pieces [they’ve] ever had on this show!”  I’m kinda sorry that Katee was sucking face [like – SO hard] with my man, but otherwise, I cannot imagine how any piece could rank higher on my fave list tonight.

Will got started in dance because of ‘Dirty Dancing’.  Seriously?  Seriously.  But the boy is cute.  And that is definitely the most imaginative solo in the history of me watching this show.  Wig and all.

Comfort and Mark are doing a Tabitha and Napoleon hip-hop piece.  Really good song choice with Party People. Choreography was o-kay.  Nigel’s comment about Comfort being better with choreography, I don’t agree.  In fact, I’m getting the impression that the judges don’t understand hip-hop.  As

Katee’s solo was well-executed but boring.  Cute that she started in dance due to a habit of tip-toeing everywhere.

Josh and Chelsie are doing Argentine Tango and Disco.  I am so sorry for them.  Dmitry’s choreographing.  I’m not quite comfortable with the continued references to Joshua’s behind.  But I thought he did an excellent job.  Joshua is translating through every genre with panache.  And the chemistry was there – I didn’t know if it would be.

Mark got into dance because of Phantom of the Opera.  Not surprised.  But his solo was awesome tonight!  Best since his audition, I think.

Courtney and Will.  “slow hip-hop”  by Tabitha and Napoleon.  I didn’t like this.  There were too many moments when they weren’t in sync.  The partnering that the judges are referencing was flat-out ugly to me.  I can’t believe that this is the first time that hip-hop is causing [white] people to “feel something”.  Aaack!  I can’t listen to Toni Basil keep saying ‘street’ anymore, either.

Chelsie’s been doing ballroom forever and she’s really good at it – kinda sux that it’s not one of those genres that translates well to solos.  But it’s cool that she chose ‘Damaged‘ as her song.

Twitch and Katee do Broadway with Tyce – ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’.  I don’t know why, but I love Katee’s idiot dance.  And I loved this routine.  It was fun, energetic, and spoke to the story of the song very well.  Once again – I love Twitch.  Katee’s good, too [but I don’t want to make babies with her].  Wonderful piece, from beginning to end.

—I just got a text from a work friend who asked: How many more times will Toni say organic and street?—

Seriously.

Joshua started by moonwalking down the hall in 3rd grade.  The solo was cute, but generally speaking, I just don’t think there’s enough time to communicate everything.

Courtney took dance since she was a kid and her solo didn’t do anything for me.

Twitch, from Montgomery, Alabama, has been in music videos in South Korea and just won my heart with his solo.  Best solo of the night, IMO.

And now for the requisite scream: BLARGH!  My dvr cut off the rest of the show.  I’m beside myself, and now I’ve gotta go back through to find which numbers to call for Twitch and Joshua.

Let me know what I missed.

yes, yes, y’all

Jessica’s out with broken ribs and Comfort’s back in her place. And all the couples have been busted up. And the judges no longer get to choose who’s out. And folks are being voted for individually. So it’s a week of change. But I’m ready.

Out the gate it’s Joshua and Courtney doing a hip hop routine from Dave Scott – whose vision greatly surpasses Tabitha & Napoleon, if this piece is any indication. The humor, the story, the vibe, the song – all perfectly chosen and conveyed. Joshua shines like gold in this piece. Courtney tried. She didn’t suck. But this is Joshua’s genre and obviously not hers. Her popping was not popping. She had great expressions, though, and moved with Josh really well. Unless something bad happens, or everyone else just slam dunks it, she’ll be safe this week. Joshua? He should stay for quite some time.

Chelsie’s up with the 1st solo of the evening. She does remarkably well considering that I find ballroom somewhat dull, and even more so when there’s only one person performing. So, good luck to her.

Next up, Twitchington is no more. Kherington pulled Mark out of the hat, and they’ve been tasked with a country two-step. Evidently this involves a lot of spinning. A lot. Wow. I’d have liked to see this done by folks more familiar with the genre. Cuz they seemed to try to focus on the technical but the technical level was really high and they weren’t up to it. This was rough. But brave face.

Gev is full of tricks in his routine. I wasn’t sure if he actually completed one or not, but it was interesting. I could see him being in danger.

Comfort and Twitch? 2 clowns? How can I watch them do a serious smooth waltz? I actually laughed out loud at one point. Their footwork is certainly not great. As this is not a comfort zone for either of them. But, eh. Them being paired together for a smooth waltz was basically a kiss of death. The lift was cool. And as Nigel said – at least it’s over.

Courtney’s solo was enough to save her. Definitely. Full of passion, awesome work.

I was just talking to my sister about who should be paired with Will now. Katee was the only person I really thought might be able to hang. So here we are, checking out Katee and Will in a Tyce number that thrills the soul. This was fantastic. Utterly. Katee totally lived up to Will, here. Both of them were awesome. Fave part? Those leg extensions on the sides of the boat ~ brilliant.

Mark chose a very strange section of Bohemian Rhapsody to do his solo. And he started really slow. I think this might be his week to go. And he’s such a cutie. Oh well.

love this guy

Chelsie and Gev are interestingly paired. Chelsie’s taller than Gev, but not by that much. Sonya Tayeh is doing a contemporary piece for them, and I think they may be able to pull this off. Chelsie was completely into the dance and the character. She was on top of it. Gev did a good job and did pull it off. Weaker than Chelsie, but still there.

Comfort is the best female hip hopper I’ve seen…certainly on the show.

And Twitch’s solo only reminded me how much I love him. Love him. His seems to have been the best planned/most practiced. Very well-timed.

Courtney and Joshua + Rumba (Jean Marc). I guess I’d always been under the impression was one of those ballroom dances where you dance around with your partner, like all those other ones – like tango, or something. These guys nailed the chemistry.

Katee’s solo was lovely, and I do love Maxwell’s ‘This Woman’s Work’ [although it always makes me think about what the song is really about.]

The jazz with Mark and Kherington wasn’t great. Wasn’t lousy. I think this is actually a really bad pairing, too. Sadly, I’m thinking, Mark is out.

Will’s “Dance With My Father” was lovely, and I’m totally voting for him and Twitch to make sure they stay.

Certainly the only thing that could’ve saved Twitch and Comfort was a hip hop routine, and Dave delivered. They were unbelievable! In that they didn’t seem phased by the critiques from the beginning. They snapped this sucker out, to Chris Brown’s ‘Forever’ [a perfect choice for some ‘buck’ choreography].

Kherington’s solo was weak. And she needed it to be strong, as she and Mark haven’t been doing so hot.

Pas de deux + Katee & Will + Imagine [by David Archuleta? really?] + Desmond Richardson. My favorite piece of the night.

We’re in the zone now, Josh’s solo – MJ’s JAM [remember Jordan in the vid?] – I LOVED it! Only other solo that really seemed planned.

Chelsie is really shining, dancing with Gev. Gev wasn’t quite there for her at some point – at one time you could actually see her reaching for his hand.

So I’m calling 06, 07, 08, 10. Think that’s too many?

Oooooh, group Bollywood routine tomorrow! But uh, I still miss Shane Sparks. Predictions? Mark and Kherington are going home. ::crossing fingers::