And so begins another season of SYTYCD. It is by far my favorite of the "talent" shows. With Top Chef right behind. And when it is good, Project Runway in a close third. I love this show because, despite my general lack of talent in the area, I LOVE dance. I think it is one of the most fascinating mediums in the art world and I think seeing this fresh talent learn and master different genres of dance is exciting to watch. And the dancing (unlike that other dance competition) is of an actual professional level each week.
This week we were introduced to the Top 11 (kinda) as they performed routines alongside the Allstars that have returned for the new format. Here's a brief rundown, in case you hadn't heard. There are 11 dancers. Instead of being paired up with each other as in previous seasons, they are paired with a different all star each week. Instead of a genre, they pick an allstar's name out of the hat and then dance with them. Boys still dance with girls, and vice versa. The judges only judge the contestant, not the allstar. Then on the second episode of the week ONE dancer will be voted off. Negative: less contestants. That's my big negative. Positive: Good dancers won't be brought down by bad partners. And I get to see some of my old favorites again!
So let's get to the show.....
Fame- Choreo: Wade and Amanda Robson. Dancers: Everyone. As to be expected, Wade delivered a fantastic number that, as far as I'm concerned, could have gone on the entire hour. The Allstars and the contestants blended well. And I really enjoyed the look of the garden party. But let's get to the small groups to get a better idea of our dancers.
Paris is Burning- Choreo: Travis Wall (woo!!) Style: Jazz. Season 7: Kent and Lauren. Allstars: Mark and Katherine. First thing I noticed: Mark. Kent is amazing, but it's unfortunate that in his first dance he had to compete with Mark for the male spotlight. Mark is intense and I think eyes always go to him. But Kent did a great job, and Travis is a good choreo for him. He's one of my favorites. Lauren all did well. I think she equaled Katherine. The costumes made it hard to tell them apart.
There's Gotta Be Something Better Than This- Choreo: Tyce DiOrio. Style: Broadway. Season 7: Alexie and Melinda. Allstars: Allison and Lauren. Lauren is my favorite girl Allstar, so I am always happy to see her. I think the best thing I can say about this dance is exactly what Nigel said - it was hard to pick out the Allstars from Season 7 girls. Alexis and Melinda are both kinda odd and very strong. It will be interesting to see how Melinda does in partner work.
Din Daa Daa- Choreo: Nappytabs. Style: Hip Hop. Season 7: Jose. Allstars: Dom, Twitch and Comfort. Ok.... the dance was good and Jose held his own ok. Epecially like the trick with the sweatshirt coming off of Jose symbolizing his joining that group of dancers. But Jose is not there yet. He seems hesitant a lot. If he wants to be Legacy (though I think he should aim to be more like Twitch, Joshua or Russell) he needs to step it up. But the best/weirdest part is the continuation of Dom's love for Cat. It's both annoying and hysterical. Can't wait to see how far he takes it!!
Work- Choreo: Jason Gilkison. Style: Salsa. Season 7: Christina. Allstars: Pasha and Anya. I think to best discuss this routine I should just put my train of thought while watching it. "A three person salsa?? That may be weird....... Oh I was right. It is weird..... It hardly seems fair to poor Christina to literally and figuratively have to compete with Anya!....... She's good but it's ANYA..... PASHA TOOK HIS SHIRT OFF!!! I have no idea who Christina is and I don't care. Pasha....................." And that pretty much summed it up. It was completely unfair to Christina. I know you wanted to include all the Allstars, for whatever reason, but that wasn't going to do anything but highlight how she is not at Anya's level yet. And then she was the only one who was actually critiqued. Poor girl.
The Bitter Earth- Choreo: Mia Michaels. Style: Contemporary. Season 7: Alex and Billy. Allstar: Ade. Is there anyone as brilliant as Mia Michaels in the dance world? Anyone at all??? Because I can't think of one. And the producers obviously favor these two guys - they got to do more solo than anyone! And with MIA!! I don't know what to say about it really. We all know that Alex and Billy are the favorites going in.....
Freak- Choreo: Sonya Tayeh. Style: Jazz. Season 7: Adechike, Robert and Ashley (who?? haha.) Allstars: Neil and Courtney. Well, someone out there does not like Ashley. This routine was fantastic, but poor Ashley was lost in it just as she has been up until now. When they went to her house I kept thinking, WHO??? Poor girl. Plus she looked just like Courtney. At least pair her with a blonde! And the guys... well, they were both very good, but they were competing with Neil. NEIL!! The boy can leap and pirouette like almost no one else, except Danny. (I miss Danny..... Travis, get on bringing him back, will ya??)
Overall it was a very good hour of dance. Although I don't know if I really know the 11 dancers any better than I did on Wednesday.
What did you all think? Who are your favorites?