I have no excuse for why this is so late. So I will just say I am sorry, dear readers! I had most of this recap written in my head, but I have yet to figure out how to plug my computer directly into my brain to get all my thoughts onto the screen. Someone get on that PLEASE. BUT last week’s recap IS up before tonight’s show, so that is something!
Last week the top 18 danced for our votes and a few favorites began to separate themselves from the pack, a romance bloomed, and Cat Deeley made us all want to wear jumpsuits so we could be as fabulous as she is. Let’s dive right in, shall we?
The Bottom Six
Jourdan, Emily, Bridget, Stanley, Teddy, Emilio
Now we are starting to see couples being punished for bland or unmemorable routines. I have to admit that I feel better when a complete couple is sent to the bottom in these early weeks. Sage accurately predicted Bridget and Emilio for bottom six-dom in her recap and I can’t for the life of me remember what Emily and Teddy danced last week, so there you go. Jourdan returns to the bottom six proving that America just doesn’t like her (will Nigel start pushing her through like he did with permanent bottom dweller Jenna last season?). Stanley is paying the price for both the boring Telephone Cord number AND losing his partner, who America hated from the beginning.
The Cat Deeley Scale of Awesomeness
Queen Cat was in excellent form tonight both sartorially and personally. Let’s talk about the outfit first: Cat looked RESPLENDENT in a black silk jumpsuit, sparkly green necklaces, perfect smoky eyes, and Veronica Lake waves. Seriously this woman is a goddess. It also made me ponder if *I* could ever pull off a jumpsuit (a thought that usually crosses my mind once a summer) and then I remembered I carry all my weight my middle, so no. Jumpsuits are really made for one type of woman, and that woman is Cat Deeley. And Mindy Kaling (who needs to teach me her ways).
Cat was also on fire as a host tonight from her bashful deflection of earning yet another Emmy nomination (CAN THIS BE HER YEAR PLEASE?) to her flailing over the fantastic group routine to her astute questions to the judges that forced them to clarify some of their critiques (specifically the Marquet critique about the balls of his feet). We’ve said it before, but Cat’s emotional investment in the contestants is what makes her so wonderful. Her teasing and delight over the Jacque and Rudy showmance was completely genuine.
This Week’s “Jidges” Score of Awesomeness: 10/10. I know Sage said we were going to wait for a really wacky outfit or tears before we gave the next 10, but I think Cat’s flailing over all her little ducklings being in love = tears over a soul crushing Travis routine.
Performances of the Night
Tanisha and Rudy, Broadway
Tanisha and Rudy’s joyous Broadway routine, choreographed by 2014 Tony Winner Warren Carlyle was the highlight of the evening (note to Nigel…please bring on more LEGIT Broadway choreographers). On a night where many of the dancers were accused of pulling faces, Tanisha and Rudy sold this dance with a pure ebullience that never crossed into cheesiness. They looked amazing (she looked ready to walk in to the role of Roxie Hart) and they gave the show a much-needed jolt of energy in the pimp spot of the night. Tanisha is clearly the more skilled of the two (THAT BACK BEND) but what Rudy lacks in technique, he makes up for it in spirit and personality. I allow that in the first few weeks of competition, as long as he continues to grow dance wise. Plus, his reactions are adorable.
Ricky and Valerie, Viennese Waltz
My second favorite routine of the night and not just because I am predisposed to like any routine that features a Jason Mraz song. Lacey Schwimmer showed up her brother this week, choreography wise, by creating a dance that played to the contestant strength but was still fully in the style of the Viennese Waltz. Ricky and Valerie have a LOVELY chemistry together and this waltz was sweetly romantic and sweeping. Like Tanisha and Rudy, one is clearly more trained than the other (that would be Ricky) but I have yet to feel like Valerie is holding him down. If anything, it’s forcing her to rise to his level and she has met the challenge two weeks in a row. She acted this routine PERFECTLY (she has an AMAZING face)…it’s always a good sign when I contentedly sigh after a routine like that. And like the judges said, props to the costume department, because I had some serious envy over her sparkly dance shoes.
I AM ready to see Ricky to get DIRTY choreography wise cause he’s been lobbed softballs so far…never being pushed to NOT be graceful and show off those ridiculous lines. It’s time for something along the lines of Alex Fucking Wong and Twitch’s hip-hop.
Bridget and Emilio, Jive
A) Of course there would be a jive to “Happy”. Fitting song is fitting.
B) Hai Pasha and Anya!
C) I automatically liked this one because Polka Dots.
In all seriousness, this routine was super cute. Was it the best jive in SYTYCD history? No. But Bridget and Emilio sold it (and were challenged by it but not TOO MUCH, so well done Pasha and Anya) and it left a giant smile on my face.
Teddy and Emily, Contemporary
Teddy and Emily’s desperation at being in the bottom 6 combined with a rather restrained (for once) routine from Tyce Diorio equaled an outstanding performance that will surely keep them from the bottom 6 this week. Teddy and Emily are both all arms and legs and their combined ganglyness was used to an incredible effect in this routine. They are also have a strong chemistry and connection that is lacking in several of the other pairs so far. Also I LOVED Misty’s comment about Emily’s body speaking French. Dead on accurate. These two could be dark horses, you guys. I’m excited to see what they do on this week’s show.
Carly and Serge, Hip-Hop
When Nigel started his critique saying he didn’t like this dance, I yelled “What are you smoking?” at my television. Thankfully Mary and most astute guest judge ever Misty Copeland agreed with me on this one. I DO think Carly was the star of this one. She completely nailed the skeleton conceit and truly danced like her head was removed from the rest of her body. Girl is FIERCE. It could also be that her skeleton costume FIT her better, with the bones lining up close to where they should be, as Serge’s pelvis design seemed to rest around his stomach and therefore just looked weird.
Who Went Home?
Nigel announced that this week the judges were sending home America’s pick: Jourdan and Stanley. Jourdan is really not a surprise, given she was in the bottom last week. I DO agree that while she was a phenomenal dancer, she never really connected emotionally in her face, so there was a big disconnect with her and the audience. Plus, the lack of screentime did not help her at all. Stanley being eliminated is a big surprise, as he had massive potential and just got saddled with routines that didn’t give him a full opportunity to shine (THIS WOULD HAVE BEEN A MOMENT FOR A SOLO PEOPLE). Clearly America just hated that Telephone Broadway Routine last week and Stanley paid the price.
Who’s in Danger Next Week?
After losing 2 partners now and being called out for pulling faces two weeks in a row, Jessica has got to be quaking in her dance shoes. The judges were rather hard on Marquet this week, calling out his lack of technique and the chilly partnership with Jourdan isn’t doing him any favors. And with pretty unmemorable routines, I would put Brooklyn, Casey, Jacque, and Zack in the bottom as well. Brooklyn and Casey have been in the bottom before, and despite the Rudy showmance that they were hard-selling all show, Zack and Jacque may suffer from the “going first” curse.
PS WHY ARE THEY NOT DANCING FOR THEIR LIVES THIS SEASON? SOMETIMES those solos really make a difference!
Inappropriate Nigel Comment of the Night
While Nigel refrained from overtly pervy remarks this week, we still had two gems from our favorite politically incorrect executive producer. The first came after Bridget and Emilio’s jive in his comments to Emilio regarding his technique…
INCON: “Fikshun never pointed his toes, and look how well HE did.”
First of all, that’s insulting to Fikshun who most definitely grew in his technique over the course of becoming America’s Favorite Dancer and secondly, here goes Nigel again with lumping every single hip-hop or street dancer into one category. Not cool. NONE FOR YOU SAYS FIKSHUN.
Runner-up INCON (to Mary after she spilled her drink): “Well there goes the alcohol.”
Making jokes about Mary drinking during the show because she is just so wacky? Be better than that, please Nigel.
The Mary Murphy Tamale Level of Screaming
Another relatively quiet night for our lady of the Hot Tamale Train. The dancers and the choreographers need to STEP IT UP. It was a delight to get to hear the origin story of the Hot Tamale Train with original tamale Anya sitting in the audience though.
Tamale Level: 3/10, bumping it up one level from last week because of the origin story. We clearly need a smoking hot cha-cha this week, and Tanisha is probably the one to bring the screams.
– The Routine may have been a bit dull, but let’s hear it for Casey’s SICK turns.
– Forever the fangirl with the long memory, I loved how Cat shouted out this classic after Jacque and Zack’s (completely inferior) routine
– “Say Something” done with a children’s choir? MAKE IT STOP.
– MAKS AND VAL CAMEO. Now can we get one of them to choreograph for the show?
– Where are NappyTabs, Stacey Tookey, and Mandy Moore so far in this season? I need them.
– Totally dug that group routine.
– I’m seeing a lot of hate for Ricky on some message boards, mainly for people thinking his “aw shucks” attitude is fake. Thoughts? We are both big fans here, and he’s still my frontrunner to win.
– Rudy on Jacque: “She’s perfect.” Yeah it may be a ploy for votes but I DID love that Rudy did not at ALL conceal the fact that he has a major crush on this girl. Love it.
That’s it for this week! Tune in tonight as the top 16 dance for your votes! Who’s going home? Who is your favorite