Fall TV 2014: What I’ll Be Watching

Posted: September 12, 2014 in TV
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Fall Season is here. Time for new shows, and time for returning favorites. Here’s what I’ll be watching this fall season. What will you be watching?

(*) = NEW SERIES

 

MONDAY

Big Bang Theory
Premieres Sept 22 on CBS
What It’s about: Three nerds, their significant others, and how they deal with their neurotic friend named Sheldon.
Why I’m Watching It: It’s hilarious. And the more Sheldon grows the funnier it seems to get. Plus I love the friendship between the characters. (Tangent: I don’t know how I feel about Kaley Cuoco’s new haircut. I think it may have a Keri Russell ala Felicity impact on the show.)

 

Gotham *
Premieres Sept 22 on Fox
What It’s About: Gotham before Batman. James Gordon Before Batman.
Why I’m Watching: I think it’s interesting creating an origin story about a man that may not be a superhero, but is a hero in his own right. Plus it’ll be interesting to see Comic Book characters we all grew up with before they became the villains we’ve all come to know.

 

 

The Voice
Premieres Sept 22 on NBC
What It’s About: Singing competition. Famous musicians making fun of each other. Red Chairs.
Why I’m Watching: Really, it’s for the auditions. I usually stop watching after that unless there’s some I really love. Also, I love the addition of Gwen Stefani and Pharrell. It’ll be good for some fresh blood.

 

Scorpion *
Premieres Sept 22 on CBS
What It’s About: Really smart people who try and solve crimes and save the world in really smart ways and with shiny expensive toys.
Why I’m Watching: They say it’s like the Big Bang Theory, but with crime. However it’s directed by Justin Lin which is exciting. It also has a great cast and hopefully over time it’ll shatter stereotypes. Also, Katherine McPhee.

 

Jane The Virgin *
Premieres Oct 13 on CW
What It’s About: A virgin girl is accidentally inseminated with a baby.
Why I’m Watching: Yes, I know the premise sounds TERRIBLE. But I’ll check out every CW show at least once. It’s a sickness.

 

 

 

The Blacklist
Premieres Sept 22 on NBC
What’s It About: Catching Serial Killers/Terrorists, I think…
Why I’m Watching: It’s just good. Though the middle of the season was rocky, the show has its moments. The highs out weight the lows, for now.

 

 

State of Affairs *
Premieres Nov 17 on NBC
What It’s About: Katherine Heigl tries to be a less interesting, more neurotic Claire Danes in Homeland. CIA, spies, terrorists, advise the president…you know, that stuff.
Why I’m Watching: As much as I hate KH as a person, I kind of like her as an actor. Seems political, seems exciting, I’ll at least watch the pilot.

 

 

Are You The One?
Premieres Oct 6 on MTV
What It’s About: MTV matches up 24 people into “perfect couples” sticks them in a house, and makes them try and find each other. Cue the drama.
Why I’m Watching: It was actually hilarious and interesting the first time around. The gimmick is a good one. Though I’m sure it will be less satisfying as the first as once the show has been going for a while MTV can only seem to find trashier and trashier people who would be willing to subject themselves to the torture.

 

 

TUESDAY

Selfie *
Premieres Sept 30 on ABC
What It’s About: A girl becomes the subject of an embarrassing video so in order to fix her image she recruits a marketing expert to help her.
Why I’m Watching: While not the most exciting premise. I LOVE John Cho. And I gotta support my fellow Asians, that being said, if I’m not hooked after the pilot or two, it’s the first to go bye bye.

 

 

The Flash *
Premieres Oct 7 on CW
What It’s About: It’s about The Flash. Google it. See Arrow for future reference.
Why I’m Watching: I love Arrow. I like Danielle Panabaker, and while I’m still not completely SOLD on Grant Gustin as Barry Allen, CW has so far done it’s superheroes well. Hopefully this one will be a little lighter and funnier than Arrow. We all love a good nerd story.

 

Manhattan Love Story *
Premieres Sept 30 on ABC
What It’s About: This show follows the beginnings of a couple just starting to date all while being privy to their inner thoughts.
Why I’m Watching: This wasn’t originally on my list. Until I saw the adorable trailer…oh plus Analeigh Tipton is in it. It’ll be nice to see her playing an age appropriate character

 

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Premieres Sept 23 on ABC
What It’s About: As the so called head of S.H.I.E.L.D., Nick Fury assembled the Avengers, but as his protégé, Phil Coulson assembled a small team of rag tag “heroes” to help protect the community and the world against Supernatural and alien events. Now that Hydra has infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D. Coulson and his team must find a new way to pick up the pieces.
Why I’m Watching: This show consistently upped its game until it became so good I couldn’t wait for the next week. It’s smart, funny, dark, clever, and overall a great addition to the Marvel family. It’s a keeper.

 

Chicago Fire
Premieres Sept 23 on NBC
What It’s About: Chicago Firefighters. Duh.
Why I’m Watching: It’s good. It’s exciting. It reminds me of ER actually, it doesn’t get too caught up in the drama of…well the drama of it all (*ahem* Grey’s Anatomy), and it has exciting scenarios week to week. This is one of those shows that keeps getting better.

 

 

Forever *
Premieres Sept 23 on ABC
What It’s About: An immortal man works in a morgue and tries to find out why he can’t die.
Why I’m Watching: I’m just going to check out the pilot. Just to see. I have a feeling this will probably be one of the first shows to go…Plus the CW show iZombie that seems eerily similar will probably be a better fit for my tastes.

 

 

Awkward
Premieres Sept 23 on MTV
What It’s About: The awkward trials and tribulations of a high school girl.
Why I’m Watching: Okay, so I didn’t really like where the show was going last season, but it’s just good brainless fun. Plus Beau Mirchoff isn’t bad to look at on a weekly basis.

 

 

Faking It
Premieres Sept 23 on MTV
What It’s About: Two best friends pretend to be lesbians in order to gain popularity, one of the friends falls for the other.
Why I’m Watching: It’s just good TV. It’s heartfelt, it’s smart, it’s funny. Okay, sure there are TONS of cliché’s everywhere, but it knows it, and it makes fun of its own cliché.

 

 

WEDNESDAY

Arrow
Premieres October 8 on the CW
What It’s About: The livestyle of the Rich, Famous, Heroic…Green Arrow.
Why I’m Watching It: Last season really upped it’s game. Especially with the Black Canary, and now that the torch has been passed, I’m looking forward to more women on the show kicking ass.

 

 

Mysteries of Laura *
Premieres Sept 17 on NBC
What It’s About: An NYPD Homicide Officer balances work and kids. Another Procedural.
Why I’m Watching It:  It looks funny. Like really funny. Hopefully it stays that way.

 

 

Law & Order SVU
Premieres Sept 24 on NBC
What It’s About: I deals with crimes and matters of law and order in the Special Victims Unit.
Why I’m Watching: Can’t stop. And apparently, won’t stop. L&O:SVU is always a background staple when I writing, cooking, or frankly just bored on a Saturday afternoon (my life is very thrilling if you can’t tell) despite my lack of liking the newest cast members…I can’t seem to let this one go just yet.

 

 

Red Band Society *
Premieres Sept 17 on FOX
What It’s About: A group of teenagers living in a hospital.
Why I’m Watching: Octavia Spencer. Hospital Teen Drama. Let’s do this people. Hopefully it’ll funny and bittersweet. Comedy needs tragedy.

 

 

Chicago PD
Premieres Sept 24 on NBC
What It’s About: The happenings of the Chicago Police Department.
Why I’m Watching: Though it’s a lot darker than Chicago Fire I love how the stories between the two shows link together. Overall it’s a just a great show, and I’m really digging Sophia Bush.

 

 

Stalker *
Premieres Oct 1 on CBS
What It’s About: Stalkers and the people that hunt them down.
Why I’m Watching: Maggie Q. Interesting Premise. Could be really creepy. Fingers crossed people.

 

 

American Horror Story: Freak Show
Premieres Oct 8 on FX
What It’s About: A disturbing, really disturbing, probably grotesquely disturbing, circus.
Why I’m Watching: I couldn’t make it past the 3 episodes of Season 1. Never watched Season Two. Hated Coven, even though I couldn’t stop watching it. So…why not watch Freak Show? Plus, I hear Matt Bomer will be in a few episodes…Love him.

 

 

Top Chef Boston
Premieres Oct 8 on BRAVO
What It’s About: Food Reality TV. But the good kind. In Boston.
Why I’m Watching: I’m a foodie.

 

 

 

THURSDAY

Grey’s Anatomy
Premieres Sept 25 on ABC
What It’s About: Doctors in a hospital. And their lives. And drama in the hospital as doctors.
Why I’m Watching: When Grey’s is good. It’s really good. But last year it focused more on personal drama rather than POW (that’s nerd for “patients of the week”).

 

 

Bones
Premieres Sept 25 on FOX
What It’s About: A woman (forensic anthropologist) who looks at bones, a FBI man who helps solve crimes. Gross bone scenarios. Intense sniper action sequences. Married with a baby.
Why I’m Watching: Bones ended on a BIG game changing, fantastically directed finale cliffhanger. I can’t wait to see what happens.

 

 

Scandal
Premieres Sept 25 on ABC
What It’s About: Scandal in the White House. A fixer to the rich, and politically famous finds that she has become the scandal.
Why I Watch: It’s intense. Good soapy drama. It’s a lot darker than the first FANTASTIC season. Hopefully it can bring back some of the humor and of course huge glasses of wine. Less twists for the sake of twists, more juicy dialogue.

 

Gracepoint *
Premieres Oct 2 on FOX
What It’s About: A young boy is found dead in a small sleepy beach town sparking a media frenzy as homicide detectives try and figure out whodunit.
Why I’m Watching: It has a “The Killing” tone about it, and I liked the first season of the killing, until it left us on a stupid, unsatisfactory, frustrating cliffhanger that made me stop watching. I didn’t watch the BBCA series, so I’m looking forward to this one. A serial procedural with some great performances.

 

Reign
Premieres Oct 2 on CW
What It’s About: Mary Queen of Scotland and Francis King of France.
Why I Watch: I didn’t want to watch this first season, but I did, and was immediately hooked. It draws you in with attractive actors, beautiful clothes, and soapy drama. It’s good. I hope it can keep up its soapy twists without getting too outrageous.

 

A to Z *
Premieres Oct 2 on NBC
What It’s About: Boy Sees Girl, Boy Meets Girl, Boy Persues Girl, Boy Dates Girl…and so on…
Why I’m Watching: Cristin Milioti and Ben Feldman have great chemistry already in the trailers and I love these actors. It looks bitter sweet ala How I Met Your Mother.

 

 

How to Get Away With Murder *
Premieres Sept 25 on ABC
What It’s About: Shonda Rhimes and Viola Davis teach kids How To Get Away With Murder. Rather a group of criminal law students and their mysteriously brilliant professor get caught up in a murder mystery. Dun Dun Dun.
What I’m Watching: Viola Davis, Viola Davis, Viola Davis.

 

 

FRIDAY

Z Nation *
Premieres Sept 12 on SYFY
What It’s About: Zombies? Pretty sure it’s SYFY’s version of The Walking Dead, only maybe with Sci-Fi-y elements.
Why I’m Watching: See above.

 

 

SUNDAY

Once Upon A Time
Premieres Sept 28 on ABC
What It’s About: Fairy tales come to life and all twisted like.
Why I’m Watching: Every time I think it’s going wrong, it does something to drag me back in. The Frozen stuff has gotten out of hand, but hopefully it’ll surprise me.

 

 

 

Madam Secretary *
Premieres Sept 21 on CBS
What It’s About: Tea Leoni as the Secretary of State.
Why I’m Watching: I’ll probably only watch the pilot, but I’m mainly watching for Tea Leoni. Plus political dramas…they’re so hot right now. This reminds me, I really should be watching House of Cards.

 

 

Resurrection
Premieres Sept 28 on ABC
What It’s About: People who were once dead have returned alive.
Why I’m Watching: Though the first season as sketchy, it ended on a fabulous cliffhanger that leaves me wanting to at least know what happens.

 

Homeland
Premieres Oct 5 on SHO
What It’s About: A manic bipolar CIA Agent with a great ugly cry face. She loves a possible terrorist. He is and isn’t a terrorist. She gets fired and then unfired, blown up and not blown up.
Why I’m Watching: The last season ended with a game changer and I’m interested in seeing the show get back to its roots.

 

 

Revenge
Premieres Sept 28 on ABC
What It’s About: A girl avenges her Father’s Death by inserting herself into the lives of the people responsible and slowly but surely, brick by brick, taking them apart one by one.
Why I’m Watching: This is another show with another game changer. Plus Emily Van Camp and Madeline Stowe are just a pleasure to watch. Their chemistry is amazing.

 

 

The Newsroom
Premieres Nov 9 on HBO
What It’s About: People in…a newsroom. Their lives, the news, fast-paced hilarious dialogue.
Why I’m Watching: John Gallagher, Jeff Daniels, Emily Mortimer, Alison Pill plus many many more. This show is funny, so smart, and it’s the final 6 episodes!!

 

 

 

 

 

While Life After Beth had a cool premise, a spectacular cast and some great moments in it, the movie was ultimately a letdown. I really wanted to like this movie, but when you’re left pointing out all the ways the movie could have been better you know there’s a problem.

 

 

Life After Beth
Directed By: Jeff Baena

What I liked:
1) The Premise - A guys girlfriend comes back from the dead only she doesn’t know what happened to her. And slowly but surely she turns into a zombie. This premise is unique. It’s a nice juxtaposition from all the other vampire movies out there. First she metaphorically breaks his heart, and then she literally tries to eat his brains. And how her family deals with it is particularly interesting. They are all just so happy to have her back, they are unwilling to accept what he’s turning into. The plot twists, the reveals, how big things happen were all really clever. Plus the other great thing was…
2) The Cast - Dane DeHaan, Aubrey Plaza, John C. Reilly, Molly Shannon, Cheryl Hines, Paul Reiser, the cast is a phenomenal list of actors/comedians. I just wish…

 

 

What I Didn’t Like

1) I wish the characters were funnier – And more likeable. Dane Dehaan as the boyfriend, Zach, was frankly…annoying! No wonder why Beth was going to break up with him. He was clingy, needy, whiny and well just a lot of work. And he was stupid, like classic horror movie, “damsel-in-distress” kind of stupid. In fact, the smartest character was Beth (Aubrey Plaza) and she was turning into a zombie! The rest of the characters especially the “grown-ups” seemed to be equally as frustratingly idiotic. A movie can be funny without making all of the characters stupid. Which brings me to…
2) The Tone – I felt like Life After Beth didn’t know what kind of movie it wanted to be. Did it want to be a drama? A comedy? A dark comedy? A dramedy? A horror movie? A simple focus or shift in tone would have done wonders for this movie.

 

This movie had a lot of issues and there are a lot of things I wish could have been different about it. That being said, support indie movies! And the zombies were killer…get it? Killer?

 

Rating:  2 out of 5 Stars

 

 

 

The time has come. It’s the moment the world has been waiting for. Okay…maybe not the world. Maybe just a few million people, but it’s the moment I’ve been waiting for and, come on, it’s all about me. Tonight the winner of So You Think You Can Dance Season 11 will be revealed.

So lets sit back, relax, and watch some dancing shall we?

 

 

SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE
Season 11
And The Winner Is…

 

Cat comes out wearing an adorable purple dress…no…no…I take it back. It’s terrible. It looks like it doesn’t fit her. And that it’s made of a sick snake or something. It’s just terrible. You know what’s not terrible? The judges panel: Tara Lipinski, Adam Shankman, Channing Tatum’s Wife, Debbie Allen, and of course Nigel and Mary. Can I just tell you how excited I am right now about Adam “where the hell have you been all season because I miss the contagious passion you exude when there is a routine you love” Shankman and Ms. Debbie “you could be reading the phone book and I’d feel like you were soothing me after a long and terrible day” Allen? I’m excited. Let’s do this, people.

 

First up?

 

Top 20 Perform, ya’ll
Choreographer: Warren Carlyle
Song: “Doctor Jazz”/Jelly’s Last Jam (1992 Original Broadway Cast)
The routine is so full of energy. A ton of people are on stage so there is a lot to see, unfortunately, I feel like the camerawork is sloppy. They try and go in for close-ups and end up missing a lot of the action. I love Valerie’s little tap solo in the middle of the piece there, but did I miss Zack and Jessica getting their moment? (Ricky had his time to shine in the beginning even though he didn’t really dance.) That being said, I think if I had really been able to see the whole performance, I would have loved it.

 

Mary’s Pick to See Again
Jessica and Casey’s Contemporary Piece by Travis Wall
Song: “Like Real People Do”/Hozier
My Thoughts: It was a bit sloppy this time around. Maybe it suffers from the fact that I wore my DVR out watching that piece over and over and OVER again, but I felt like it was a bit messy and even rushed in certain places. That being said, it was still gorgeous and I love seeing Casey back. Hopefully he’ll make another appearance.

 

Debbie Allen’s Pick to See Again
Ricky and Valerie’s Hip Hop Routine by Pharside and Phoenix
Song: “Turn Down For What”/DJ Snake & Lil’ Jon
My Thoughts: I forgot about this Scarecrow vs. Raggity-Ann performance and I think I enjoyed it a lot more the 2nd time around then I did the first time. It’s a lot of fun and Valerie seemed to be less tense than she was previously. Also, that leg wave is still a winner.

 

Zack’s Favorite Performance of the Season
Zack and All-Star Amy’s Contemoprary Routine by Sonya Tayeh
Song: “Europe, After the Rain”/Max Richter
My Thoughts: I love it when the dancers’ dancing is louder than the music. And I mean that in a good way. I don’t mean that I can hear them move or their feet hit the ground, I just mean you can feel the piece and it vibrates in your bones. That’s what this routine does. I also think it’s a smart choice by Sonya to start and end the piece without music. It’s much more affecting that way.

 

Nigel’s Pick to See Again
Rudy and All-Star Allison’s Jazz Routine by Ray Leeper
Song: “Dirty Diana”/Michael Jackson
My Thoughts: I don’t mean to sound creepy, but I am obsessed with Allison Holker. I just am…okay, that was very creepy. Hopefully guys in suits won’t come a knocking at my door with a big butterfly net, but Allison just kills it every single time. I’ve never seen one episode of Dancing With The Stars, but now that I know Alison is on it, I just might watch.  That being said, I think Rudy brought it harder this time. He was more noticeable this time. His jumps were higher, snaps louder, and he was holding his own against Allison. She didn’t eat him alive like she did last time. She may have just bitten off an arm, or a leg.

 

Next, Paula Abdul comes out…randomly…and starts giving this awkward speech. So awkward, I can’t even watch it and start to fast-forward, but then I see this shirtless kid take the stage, someone I don’t recognize and have to rewind to see just what the crazy lady is talking about. She’s introducing the winner of SYTYCD Australia.

So the kid, Michael Domeski, comes out with his black leather pants, and he just burns down the house. The music “Unstoppable” by E.S. Posthumus is as dramatic has Domeski’s dancing was intense. He flips, turns, rolls, jumps, around that stage until he burns a hole in it leaving the rest of us in the dust. It was definitely a stand ovation performance. No wonder he won. Damn kid. Just Damn.

 

 

Valerie’s Favorite Routine of the Season
Valerie and Zack’s Tap Routine by Anthony Morigerato
Song: “Sing”/Ed Sheeran
My Thoughts: God, I can’t tell you how happy this routine makes me. And damn, it’s such a work out. The routine is just so frickin’ amazing because it combines the three things I can’t do, dance, tap, and walk down (or up) a flight of stairs. So glad to see this one again. It just makes me happy.

 

Les Twins perform and it’s somehow adorable and not adorable at the same time. I don’t really know what else to say about it. I’ll just leave it ambiguous.

 

Ricky’s Favorite Performance of the Season
Ricky and Jessica’s Contemporary Routine by Sonya Tayeh
Song: “Vow”/Meredith Monk
My Thoughts: It rarely happens, but I think this performance was better than the first time they performed it. It just felt stronger this time. You can see how much they’ve grown. And I still held my breath throughout, even though I knew what was going to happen. It’s so haunting, so beautiful, and so breathtaking.

 

America’s Pick Between Three Hip Hop Routines
Carly and Serge’s Hip Hop Routine by Luther Brown
Song: “Senile”/Young Money feat. Tyga, Nicki Minaj, & Lil Wayne
My Thoughts: If I had to see a hip hop routine again, it would be the Zack and Ricky routine from last week. However, between the three choices we were given this skeleton one would have definitely been my pick. It was a little less boney this time around….and that’s all I’ll say about that…

 

Jenna’s Pick to See Again
Tanisha and Rudy’s Jazz Routine by Sonya Tayeh
Song: “You Need”/Bengsons
My Thoughts: Wow, Rudy gets to do a lot of routines today. Is it weird that I don’t remember this performance? Because I’m pretty sure I would have remember the song. It’s KILLER. It has an Imogen Heap kinda thing going on. Tanisha does this cool move on Rudy’s leg and I think the performance is coming back to me a little. It’s a cool routine. But definitely not a memorable one.

 

Adam Shankman’s Pick to See Again
Zack and Ricky’s Hip Hop Performance by Pharside and Phoenix
Song: “The Antidote”/District 78
My Thoughts: First, let me just say, I see Adam all the time at the Starbucks I go to, and there are many times I want to approach him like we’re best friends, but then I remember, he’s a celebrity and would probably serve me a restraining order right there. That being said, I love his pick! And I’m glad we get to see this routine again. I just love the look on Zack’s face when he’s doing that “I’m going to go and get myself some ice cream only in slow motion” move while Ricky is doing Channing Tatum’s worm move on the floor. It’s ADORABLE.

 

Cat Announces the First Person Who did Not Win aka 4th Place
And, it’s Zack. He gets a loving standing-o. I think if I had to pick a 4th Place contestant, it would have been Valerie…but I also would not have chosen Zack to win.

 

Tara’s Pick to See Again
Emilio and Jasmine’s Performance by Nappy Tabs
Song: “Get Low”/Dillon Francis & DJ Snake
My Thoughts: Not that the routine isn’t great, but is it weird that the best part of this routine is when Emilio jumps into the snake barrel? I just love it. It’s a fun routine. Nice to see again. Jasmine is so shiny. That’s all I got.

 

Jesse Tyler Ferguson comes out and is adorable. He pitches himself as a contestant for Season 12, but not before using the word “jidges” (Why doesn’t Cat say it like that anymore?) and calling Travis Wall his spirit animal. (Isn’t Travis Wall all of ours Spirit Animal?) So yeah, it’s cheesy and whatever, but I still think is adorbs. The fact that he said “jidges” he could have just stared in awkward silence at the camera for 2 minutes and I would have still loved it.

 

Top 10 and All-Stars Perform
Choreographers: Sonya Tayeh and Christopher Scott
Song: Sweet Disposition”/The Temper Trap
My Thoughts: Man Oh Man, I gotta say I LOVED this routine. It was so perfect. It played out like a movie. The position of the dancers, the movement of the camera, the timing was SO SO perfect! There was so much to love. DOMINIC! (Everytime I see that kid, I think of this.) I loved when Robert picked up Ricky. I loved the flash mob sequence. I loved Will and Marko just killing it. I loved seeing the expression on Zack’s face when he was doing the tutting there. I loved the kissing shadow in the clock. I loved Dominic’s B-Boy move. There was just so much joy in all the dancers’ face. It looked like so much fun. As for this All-Stars, here’s who I spotted: Fik-Shun, Robert, Kathryn, Will , Jasmine, Marko, Dominic, Jenna, and Amy…Did I miss anyone? I also LOVE LOVE LOVE the little clap Robert does at the very very end then how he envelopes Kathryn. We he also the one kissing her in the background? This routine makes me wish I were a dancer. And I think it’s on par with some of the best group routines of the series like “Ramalama Bang Bang” and “Puttin’ On The Ritz.”

 

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Jessica’s Favorite Routine
Jessica and Robert’s Contemporary Routine by Travis Wall
Song: “When I Go”/Over the Rhine
My Thoughts: I don’t think I realized how abusive this routine was the first time around. If possible I think the routine had even MORE passion and physicality to it than it did the first time around. I mean Robert nearly ripped the hair off of Jessica’s head. Just frickin’ gorgeous. (Those two statements don’t really go together…haha) I love the look on Travis’ face too. He was like whoa. Damn.  Exactly.

 

Cat Announces Third Place
And it’s JESSICA!? What the damn hell? I thought for sure it would come down to Ricky and Jessica. For sure. That’s a shocker to me. Is it bad that now my thought is Ricky is definitely…and should rightly so, take this competition? Love Valerie, but Ricky is the better all-around dancer. That being said, Jessica…I hope you come back as an All-Star.

 

Cat’s Favorite Routine
Valerie and Ricky’s Contemporary Routine by Travis Wall
Song: “Oh Darling”/Gossling
My Thoughts: First of all, I LOVE the fact that Cat was like, do you think you two could dance this routine for me because we’ve never had 2 finalists dance before I announce the winner before. And in the background Nigel yells, SAY NO. Adorable and hilarious at the same time.  Secondly…OH MY GOD this routine was miles and miles and MILES better than it was the first time around. I even teared-up at the climax when Valerie leaned back all the way to the floor. I’m pretty sure she was sobbing too. It was just so moving. I could really feel the desperation, the abandon, the passion the need the want. I felt it all. Just so gorgeous! Tears people. Tears. What are the judges yelling?

 

Cat Announces The Winner
Cat shows us the video of Valerie and Ricky’s time on the show and the last thing that’s said on the video is from Valerie, “I don’t know what I’m going to do without my partner.” Cut to, the two of them hugging and crying. I mean. You can’t write this stuff people. Tears!

 

America’s…Favorite…Dancer…Is…RICKY!

 

I LOVE all the other dancers bum-rushing the stage as Ricky screams. This is when So You Think You Can Dance is at its best. Feeling the comradery from the other contestants, the heartfelt moments, the bond. No other show has this. It’s not about the fame, it’s not about the money, it’s just about the dancing. And that is why I will always love So You Think You Can Dance.

 

Congratulations Ricky. You deserve it.


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We hope this day wouldn’t come, but it has. The finale of So You Think You Can Dance is tomorrow (Wednesday). Tomorrow we will be getting a recap of some of the judges favorite performances of the season. I’ve complied a list of my 12 favorites and I hope I get to see some (if not all) of them tomorrow.

 

My Top 12 Performances of Season 11 – So You Think You Can Dance 
(Because I couldn’t narrow it down to just 10)

 

#12 -  Jessica and Casey (Top 6 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Doriana Sanchez/Disco
Song“Dim All The Lights”/Donna Summer
My Original Review: “I gotta say, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Disco routine that’s been this good. Usually it’s a lot of glitz and glamor and flips and spins and lifts and frantic chaos. And while this routine had the first 5 things, there was this cool sense of ease about it. Like they didn’t have a care in the world. It was so much fun. It started out with Casey spinning Jessica around super-fast – I mean seriously faster than normal and it was just uphill from there. I loved seeing the cool disco moves with them dancing side by side. The lifts felt easy and simple (even though they were not) and it looked like they were having a lot of fun out there. I also loved the seemingly abrupt ending. It was just a super fun routine.

 

#11 -  Casey and All-Star Kathryn (From the Top 10 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song“Maybe This Time”/Liza Minnelli
My Original Review: “The thing I love about Casey is that I feel like he’s just here to dance. It seems like whenever he talks to the camera or is too much in the spotlight he feels a bit uncomfortable, but when he dances that’s when his personality comes out. And man on man, his personality came out in this routine. The routine started out sweet and simple-like, and Casey was pulling out some great moves. Then there was this breakout moment, where Casey just seemed to shed all the restraint he usually shows and he just let it all out. It was sassy and really just spectacular. Seeing a dancer have that breakout moment always makes me excited. I thought Casey was outstanding and he’s quickly moving up to be one of my favorites.”

 

#10 -  Jessica and All-Star Twitch (From the Top 10 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Nappy Tabs/Hip Hop
Song: “U Got Me Up (Underground Goodie Mix ’93)”/Cajmere feat. Dajae
Performance: This routine was so much fun and I have to say Jessica tore it up. I saw a whole different side to her usually sweet personality. She had sass and an attitude and sex appeal. As Nigel would say she danced like a woman. It was a really cute routine and Twitch as always is a great performer. I could watch him dance all day long.

 

 

#9- Valerie and Zack (From the Top 20 Introduction Performance Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Anthony Morigerato/Tapping
Song: “Sing”/Ed Sheeran
My Original Review: “I’ll be honest guys, I can barely walk up (or down) a set of stairs without falling. Maybe it’s an inner ear thing, but I digress. What these kids did is so awe-inspiring. Nothing only were they tapping up and down, backwards and forwards, one leg and two legs, but they were keeping an intricate delicate rhythm. And they were in sync. It was quite thrilling. Plus they’re ADORABLE. Valerie has this Ashley Williams kind of thing about her and I‘m pretty sure I could fit Zack in my pocket (even if he is as tall as Cat). The routine was extremely difficult, but they made it look easy and fun.”

 

#8 – Emily and Teddy (Top 18 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Tyce DiOreo/Contemporary
Song:  “Ne Me Quitte Pas”/Nina Simone
My Original Review: “Can I just say, I was totally into this piece, until I HEAR Tyce yell “YES” in a quiet moment and I suddenly become distracted. COME ON TYCE. Let the dancers just dance. Okay, moving on. The piece was actually really powerful. It wasn’t conventional. It was dirty and frustrating, and took me to another place. Everything was right about this piece. The song was perfect because it took me to another place. Like a French couple fighting in the streets trying to figure if they should stay together or not. Teddy was killing it. He just gets it and his movement is so beautiful. As for Emily, there were moments I didn’t think she was very strong, but then she pulled out some brilliant move or emotion that made me think twice. That ending was brutally gorgeous. I really liked this piece.”

 

#7 – Ricky and Zack (From the Top 4 Performance Episode
Choreographer/Style: Phoenix and Pharside/Hip Hop
Song: “The Antidote”/District 78
My Original Review: “There’s nothing I like better, then watching two-whiter-than-white white guys doing hip hop. (See Benji and Travis’ hip hop Season 2). This routine was KILLER! I probably haven’t been this excited about a hip hop routine since Twitch and Alex Wong’s routine (though Comfort and Jasmine’s routine came close.) There were so many cool tricks I can’t even name them all. When Zack picked up Ricky by his arms and lifted him as Ricky still had his feet out. When Ricky jumped up, and Zack caught him up by his shoulders and bent back so Ricky could catch him by the head, when Zack pulled Ricky and he jumped up on his stomach, Ricky’s sexy Channing Tatum worm move on the ground, Zack swinging Ricky around by the ankles…SO MANY GOOD THINGS TO WATCH! It was just so well-choreographed, so well danced (they were hitting it HARD), and if a routine can make me write in ALL CAPS, then you know it’s greater than good!”

#6 -  Rudy and All-Star Allison (From The Top 8 Performance Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song“Dirty Diana”/Michael Jackson
My Original Review: “Rudy, I love ya kid, but put you next to Allison and she will eat you ALIVE and she does. Allison just had a completely different energy than Rudy did. She left it all on the floor. Her being my favorite dancer it’s impossible for me not to look at her. I couldn’t keep my eyes off her. And while Rudy danced great and showed a lot of strength, I feel like he could have done more. He didn’t grab me or fight for my attention. And with such a dramatic song and routine like this he really needed to do that. Instead he let Allison overshadow him. He had an outstanding partner, a bad ass choreographer, and a great routine, he just didn’t live up to its demands. I wonder what the judges think since I know they love him.” (My current thoughts – I like this performance so much more upon repeat viewings, and thats thanks to Allison)

 

 

#5 - Jessica and Ricky (From the Top 20 Introduction Performance Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Sonya Tayeh/Contemporary
Song“Vow”/Meredith Monk
My Original Review: “Ricky and Jessica connected in more ways than one during rehearsal. Their heads, literally connected. Could they connect in this piece? The answer is yes. This performance was the definition of breathtaking. The music was so quiet, just a woman, singing acapella, a song that sounds similar to the Star Trek Theme, but it was so mesmerizing. It captivated you. It made the piece less noise, serene, subtle. Your focus was soley on the dancers and it was so captivating you couldn’t help but hold your breath. I frankly couldn’t take my eyes off of these two, they’re probably the shortest in the competition but Ricky with his beard had such strength and control, and Jessica’s legs are just crazy special. I do wish this couple was an actual pair because I agree with Nigel, they would have fun away with the competition.”

 

#4 -  Bridget and Emilio (From the Top 16 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song“The Leaving Song”/Chris Garneau
My Original Review: “I’m pretty sure I could have watched a full 2 hours of this routine. In fact, I felt as if the story was just getting started, and I wanted to learn more. There were SO MANY wonderful things about this routine. And if Bridget goes home after this performance it will be a TRAVIS-TEY (see what I did there? Couldn’t resist). Her movements were so stunning, and visually striking. She fully got into character and her sweet demeanor just disappeared. I almost forgot Emilio was a hip hop dancing until Travis incorporated some of his movement into the choreography. The only thing I wish was that there was more light so I could see what was going on. Love the pose when Emilio lifted her up and she spread her arms and legs. Love her dipping down, chest out leg up as he caught her. That took a lot of trust. Love her grabbing onto his leg with her legs and holding onto the bars for support. Really I wish this routine would have continued for 2 more minutes, I felt like it was 30 seconds long. Emilio’s face is so full of emotion when the routine is over.

#3 – Jessica and All-Star Robert (From the Top 4 Perform Episode)
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “When I Go”/Over The Rine
Performance: Travis, you son of a b*tch. You’ve done it again. I don’t even know how a guy like Travis exists. He’s just too creative for his own good. And he knows how to punch you in your heart. This routine is one of the greats. This one will go down in SYTYCD history as being one to remember. I love everything about this it. I love how one movement blended into the next and into the next so there was no stopping no disjoint. Then end of one breath was the beginning of another it was fantastic. I love how they were ripping and pulling and pushing each other. I love when they were climbing on each other. It was raw, and beautiful, and disturbing, and heartbreaking, and breathtaking. I could not take my eyes off of Jessica. I love when she grabbed his face, I love when Robert lifted her feet with his. I love when she fell to the ground, he picked her up by the head to rest it on his leg, and she did a back somersault off his leg over his back. I love when he kicked her leg down and she fell to the ground and he twisted over her and she in turn used her legs to twist over his head. It was all connected. Just outstanding, Travis. (Current thoughts: I like this piece mostly because of the choreography, if you couldn’t tell. Travis is a genius.)

 

#2 -  Brooklyn, Casey, Emily, Emilio, Tanisha, Serge, Valerie, Zack  (Group Routine from the Top 16 Perform Episode)
Choreographer: Sonya Tayeh
Song“So Broken (Live)”/ Bjork
My Original Review: “I really really REALLY liked this piece. It was so brutal, and ugly, yet beautifully haunting at the same time. I felt like they were dancing as the group, they weren’t trying to be showy. I loved the move where they all fell over at the same time. It was really a WOW moment. This piece was subtle and not subtle at the same time. And I LOVE the closing shot on their faces just breathing and being in the moment. This piece left me tense, staring at it through clenched eyes. Cat said it right, it was gorgeous.”

 

 

AND MY FAVORITE PERFORMANCE OF THE SEASON GOES TO….

 

 

# 1 - Jessica and Casey’s Routine (From the Top 14 Perform Episode)
Choreography/Style: Travis Wall/Choreography
Song“Like Real People Do”/Hozier
My Original Review: “Travis Wall has done it again people. He took me to another place. I felt like I was watching a romantic indie movie montage where the couple is running through a field of daisies all happy and in love. There were so many great moments in this piece that sent shots of warm fuzzies to my heart when they happened. The jolt Jessica felt all throughout her body when they first kissed. When she went spread eagle into the air as the music crescendo. When Casey swung her around from side to side like. This Jessica was the Jessica that we saw at the beginning of the show. She had this light inside of her that we saw during the Top 20 performance. And that light was also in Casey. He was definitely swoon worthy with this performance. He was so careful, and gentle, but masculine at the same time in the way that he took care of her during this piece. Plus there was one moment in the piece where he had a genuine loving smile on his face. I loved it. It was SO SO gorgeous. Now excuse me while I download this song and rewind the performance to watch it again, with the same goofy little, smitten smile on my face.” (Current thoughts: I rate this as the highest performance due to my emotional response and the way it made me feel. Other routines may have been technically better with bigger WOW moments, but this one hit me like a shot to the heart.)

Turns out a lot of the performances I liked were from Jessica…go figure. What were some of your favorite performances of this season? Are you ready for the finale tomorrow?

 

Snowpiercer is dark and it’s hilarious, it’s subtle and it’s over the top, it’s violent and it’s gentle. It’s all these things without being too much. It’s movie making at its best: creative, smart, thrilling, original, and a movie that makes you excited. Everything about this movie is just right.

Snowpiercer
Directed By: Boon Joon-ho
Starring: Chris Evans, Kang-ho Song, Jamie Bell, Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, John Hurt, Ed Harris, Alison Pill, Ah-sung Ko

Premise: A failed global experiment dispenses a frozen tundra across Earth killing off most of the planet. The remaining survivors are collected onto a massive train called the Snowpiercer that has been circling the Earth in a perpetual state of motion for the past 17 years. The lower class passengers are relegated to the back of the train forced to eat disgusting food (if they even get to eat at all) while the upper class passengers sit at the front of the train living in luxury. Hoping to change their circumstances, Curtis reluctantly finds himself leader of a strange band of renegades who strive to fight for better living conditions by killing Wilfred, the pusedo-god all the upper citizens worship for being responsible for the train and their survival.

 

 

4 Things I Liked About Snowpiercer

 

1)  Tilda Swinton Wins The Movie: Snowpiercer is filled with eccentric and diverse performances from its quirky characters.   Kang-ho Song and Ah-sung Ko are funny as the drug addicted father-daughter duo with special skills to help Curtis (Chris Evans) on his mission. Alison Pill is brilliant as the overly perky, obviously brainwashed, definitely disturbed pregnant grade school teacher. But it’s Tilda Swinton’s performance as Mason, the person enforcing all the rules, keeping everyone in line, that definitely wins the movie. She completely immerses herself in this delusional character and is able to bring strange and creepy quirks to the role without going overboard with her performance. She really is just a marvel to watch, buck teeth and all.

2)  The Production Design and Set Dressing was Visually Striking:  Each room of the train was different, but still dynamic. It was set up in the perfect way for a fresh and new adventure to happen within a small, contained space.  While watching this movie my friend actually said, the production designer must have had so much fun making the movie.

3)  The Movie was a Fresh Take on an Old Story: Snowpiercer was a blend of many different genres. It was Tarantino-esque, with Asian movie themes, all taking place in a dystopian world. But somehow, even with these blending of genres, the movie managed to feel fresh and original. The fight things were creative (especially fighting in the dark), and yes, there was brutal violence, but it wasn’t overtly bloody. It wasn’t gratuitous. You know no limbs falling off or blood squirting out. Just the normal amount of gore, you know, when you’re shooting and slicing your way through a passenger train.

4)  Chris Evans was a Great Leading Man: As important as the story, the production design, the directing, and the other actors were, Chris Evans as the lead was just as important. He had this spark in him throughout the entire movie. You could tell he really loved what he was doing. He showed his “superhero” strength in the intense action sequences, and he also showed his vulnerable side in the more emotional scenes. He was believable and he was more than just a pretty face.

Snowpiercer is one of those movies you always remember. There is something in this movie for everyone. It is a movie that brings a sledgehammer to your imagination bubble and cracks it wide open letting all its contents spill out and into your soul. And if you’re a creator after watching this movie, you’re going to want to create. Snowpiercer is a movie for movie lovers. So go watch it already.

Rating: 4 ½ stars (out of 5)

 

 

 

It’s the last episode for the finale. The final four. And I think this is the perfect final four. They are all well-rounded, extremely passionate about what they do and different styles. Final four shows are always spectacular and I can’t wait to see what happens (I write my reviews on the episode as I watch them…) Let’s do this people.

 

 SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE: SEASON 11

Top 4 Perform

Top 4 Group Routine
Choreographer: Travis Wall
Song: “Wind Beneath My Wings”/Ryan Dan
Performance: While I loved the fact that the girls danced with the girls and guys danced with the guys, and the piece was beautiful and flowly, I felt like it was too somber for an opening number. I was waiting for that WOW, take my breath away moment and it never came. Travis can do better. It wasn’t terrible, it just wasn’t what I wanted at that moment.

 

The guest judge for this week is Jesse Tyler Ferguson. Though he doesn’t give critical critique he always gives such great quotes. He’s just so alive and excited to be there and that’s what you want from a judge rather than just platitudes.

Today everyone will be dancing with everyone else and an All-Star and a solo. So let’s get to it!

 

Routine #1: Valerie and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Sean Cheesman/African
Song: “Voices of Savannah”/DJ Chus
Performance: Their faces were so intense. I have to say Valerie really pulled out all the stops with her facial expressions today. While there were some other pieces I felt like she was holding back with emotion, or that all she could play was happy bubbly characters, she really kept her face intense this entire routine. And I appreciated it. As for the dancing, I thought it was high energy, bouncy, and in sync. They danced together, Ricky didn’t outshine Valerie and Valerie didn’t outshine Ricky. They danced as one.
Judges: Nigel says they proved they have stamina. Mary says they got down and had a lot of animal instincts. Jesse says they were amazing. Grade: B

 

Routine #2: Jessica and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “Hernando’s Hideaway”/Ella Fitzgerald
Performance: Despite the fact that I’m pretty sure Jessica is the shortest girl in the competition, somehow her legs looked so long and elegant this routine. This routine was definitely one of Spencer’s best. It was sexy, it was sneaky, it was fun, and I loved how he incorporated the stairs and table. Those set pieces gave the routine a WOW factor adding so much more to the movements. I also love the lift that happened on the stairs, if I had done it, me and my partner wouldn’t have made it out of that lift alive. Is it weird to say I also LOVE what Zack is wearing? That suit jacket is so debonair. Like a pea coat suit.
Judges: Mary said Jessica was slinky, and Zack has some great legs. Jesse said they were both spectacular and could be on Broadway right now. Nigel says the choreography was strong and Zack is one of the most gifted dancers of the season. And for him Jessica stands out. Grade: B+/A-

 

Routine #3: Valerie and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Tyce DiOrio/Contemporary
Song: “Pearls”/Sade
Performance: First of all, I feel so bad for Zack having to perform back to back. Secondly, I just don’t like Tyce anymore. Third, was the whole blind concept distracting to you? I don’t know if it was Valerie’s performance, or the extra emphasis on being blind in Tyce’s choreographer, but every time she searched for Zack’s face or had that goofy, far away-gaze, smile on her face I just cringed it felt SO weird. That being said a lot of the movement was really pretty. I just wish the concept had been different. I also felt like the piece was building up toward something but then never got there. It was totally anticlimactic and just not satisfying. I loved the move where Zack picked Valerie up mid leap. I love assisted lifts.
Judges: Jesse said Valerie sold the performance and loved that the routine was light despite a heavy concept. Nigel said the routine touched him and that they danced it beautifully. Mary loved the honesty in Zack’s face and loved the moment Valerie touched his face. (Am I missing something here? Am I just a hard ass? Am I the only one that found it goofy? Is my dislike for Tyce overshadowing my ability to judge this routine?) Grade: B

 

Routine #4: Jessica and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song: “F For You”/Disclosure feat. Mary J. Blige
Performance: These two have such amazing chemistry. They would give each other looks throughout the piece that seemed to fire each other up. And it was like this spark of light and electricity would jolt through you. They played off each other well and it’s a shame we haven’t seen them dance together more. I loved their energy and their athleticism. I loved how hard they were hitting it, and I loved that look in their eyes when they were dancing. They were having a lot of fun.
Judges: Nigel says as a couple they complement each other.  Mary said they had a lot of power and the routine was funky and fun. Jesse calls them “adorable sprockets.” Grade: A-

 

Routine #5: Jessica and Valerie
Choreographer/Style: Nakul Dev Mahajan/Bollywood
Song: “Ghagra”/Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (Soundtrack)
Performance: A happy Bollywood number is the perfect routine for these two bubbly girls. Unfortunately it left me a little unsatisfied. I feel like a lot of these routines leave me hanging and end before the story is complete. Despite that, I thought the performance was light and fun and bouncy. Valerie seemed to be losing a bit of steam near the end of the routine. Jessica’s leaps looked higher and stronger. Overall the routine was a lot of fun, but nothing amazing. I wanted more.
Judges: Mary calls them stunning, Jesse says he felt like he lost 10 pounds just watching the routine. Grade: B+

 

Routine #6: Ricky and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Phoenix and Pharside/Hip Hop
Song: “The Antidote”/District 78
Performance: There’s nothing I like better, then watching two-whiter-than-white white guys doing hip hop. (See Benji and Travis’ hip hop Season 2). This routine was KILLER! I probably haven’t been this excited about a hard-hitting, hip hop routine since Twitch and Alex Wong’s routine (though Comfort and Jasmine’s routine came close.) There were so many cool tricks I can’t even name them all. When Zack picked up Ricky by his arms and lifted him as Ricky still had his feet out. When Ricky jumped up, and Zack caught him up by his shoulders and bent back so Ricky could catch him by the head, when Zack pulled Ricky and he jumped up on his stomach, Ricky’s sexy Channing Tatum worm move on the ground, Zack swinging Ricky around by the ankles…SO MANY GOOD THINGS TO WATCH! It was just so well-choreographed, so well danced (they were hitting it HARD), and if a routine can make me write in ALL CAPS, then you know it’s greater than good!
Judges: Cat calls it brilliant. Hardcore, tattooed Phoenix is making a heart with his hands towards Ricky and Zack, so that’s gotta say something, right? The judges are blown away, loved the routine, and loved how hardcore they were. Grade: A+

 

Routine #7: Valerie and All-Star Aaron
Choreographer/Style: Anthony Morigerato/Tap
Song: “Love Me or Leave Me”/Sammy Davis Jr.
Performance: Ok, see, that’s how you end a routine! It doesn’t have to be fancy or dramatic, but it has a clear ending. That’s how I like my dances. This tap routine was a lot of fun. I love the intricate beats they were creating with their feet. Can I also say I LOVE what Valerie is wearing, especially those adorable red tap shoes? I saw Valerie looking at Aaron a lot and I wish he looked back at her so they could connect more. But if this was about Valerie, I thought she was adorable and a lot of fun to work. And the footwork was pretty spectacular too. I love seeing Aaron back. He was one of my favorites on his season.
Judges: They loved the tapping routine and that Aaron is back to dance with the tappers. Mary thought Valerie was tremendous. Jesse calls Valerie the Michael Jordan of tapping, even though he doesn’t know sports. Grade: B+

 

Routine #8: Ricky and All-Star Kathryn
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “Not About Angels”/Birdy
Performance: I love love LOVE the incorporation of pieces of Kathryn’s dress into the routine, I thought it was really creative and made for some beautiful moments, especially at the end when they made Angels wings. I also loved how for once it was the woman supporting the man. Stacey really gave Ricky a lot to do in this piece and showcased his talents while Kathryn took more of a backseat. I love that about the routine because sometimes you feel like the All-Star is carrying it. I also love how from the opening frame of the dance Ricky was already in the moment, tears in his eyes. It was really a beautiful piece with just great music and costume choices all around.
Judges: Mary loves Ricky’s feet and says he takes her breath away. Jesse says Ricky truly moves people when he dances. Grade: A-

 

Routine #9: Zack and All-Star Aaron
Choreographer/Style: Anthony Morigerato/Tap
Song: “Piano Man”/Billy Joel
Performance: Words can’t even describe how special this piece was. It was just these two guys having a conversation…with their FEET and I could understand everything they were saying. It was BEYOND dancing. And just the performances performance was amazing and their connection genuine. You could see the passion behind their eyes and I felt like they were telling me this grand old story. I really loved it and want to watch it again. It had so much feeling and grace and passion…I feel like I’m saying the same things over and over again, but that’s because what they did goes beyond words. It was just pure bliss.
Judges: Cat calls it divine, I love it. Jesse says he’s grown so much throughout this show and he’s a brilliant dancer. Nigel says he has such good rhythm. Mary thinks he shows passion in everything he does, not just tap. Grade: A+

 

Routine #10: Jessica and All-Star Robert
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “When I Go”/Over The Rine
Performance: Travis, you son of a b*tch. You’ve done it again. I don’t even know how a guy like Travis exists. He’s just too creative for his own good. And he knows how to punch you in your heart. This routine is one of the greats. This one will go down in SYTYCD history as being one to remember. I love everything about this it. I love how one movement blended into the next and into the next so there was no stopping no disjoint. Then end of one breath was the beginning of another it was fantastic. I love how they were ripping and pulling and pushing each other. I love when they were climbing on each other. It was raw, and beautiful, and disturbing, and heartbreaking, and breathtaking. I could not take my eyes off of Jessica. I love when she grabbed his face, I love when Robert lifted her feet with his. I love when she fell to the ground, he picked her up by the head to rest it on his leg, and she did a back somersault off his leg over his back. I love when he kicked her leg down and she fell to the ground and he twisted over her and she in turn used her legs to twist over his head. It was all connected. Just outstanding, Travis.
Judges: Nigel thinks she’s become a great actress as well as a dancer. Mary says every single thing she did was electric. Jesse says this routine was his favorite. Grade: A+

 

 

SOLOS

Who: Ricky
Song: “Skin and Bones”/David J. Roch
Performance: Seriously, how does Ricky kick his leg up SO fast and so straight. It’s unbelievable. I love his solo, even if it’s a lot of the same things he always does. It’s more than just the dancing. It’s the presence. It’s the love. It’s the feeling he projects when he dances. I love it all.
Rating: 8/10

 

Who: Valerie
Song: “Valerie”/Mark Ronson feat. Amy Winehouse
Performance: God, I cannot say enough good things about this girl. First of all, not even talking about her tapping everything about her during this solo is perfect. Perfect song choice, perfect outfit (white pants, red top, red shoes), perfect smile. I love her so much.
Rating: 7/10

 

Who: Jessica
Song: “It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World”/Juliet Simms
Performance: I think what I love so much about Jessica’s solo is not the actual dancing, but the fact that her solo’s start in the middle of the crescendo of the music. It gets you excited. She comes out like a firecracker as if someone just plugged her in, but she was always on.
Rating: 9/10

 

Who: Zack
Song: “Supersititon”/Adam Rafferty
Performance: Calm cool collected sleek and suave. Love this guy, and his style seems to be getting better and better!
Rating: 8/10

 

My Prediction
As MUCH, as MUCH as I love Ricky (and Valerie and Zack), I think the winner should be Jessica. There’s just something about that girl. She’s been killing it the last few weeks and her talent and stage presence is undeniable.

 

Random Thoughts/JTF Quotes:

  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson, always the life of the party.
  • Jason Mraz is the first performance I’ve watched on this show. I’ve pretty much fast forward through the other routines.
  • Love Cat trying to put the stage hands who moved the cards on the stage into the spot light. ADORBS.
  • Love the way Jesse teased Mary and Nigel after the hip hop routine.
  • I love how excited Emilio is for the guys after the routine ends.
  • Jesse: “When I was judging last year I confessed to Aaron that I had a crush on him and I thought that after a year it would have gone away but WOW it didn’t.” Probably the most adorable moment.
  • Jesse: “Hey Ricky you were great, if you were older we could date.” LOVE. IT.
  • Could the final four be any cuter? Jumping up and down in a circle and then running around holding hands in a circle. So freakin’ adorable.

 

Top 5 Performances of the Episode:

  1. Ricky and Zack – Hip Hop
  2. Jessica and Robert – Contemporary
  3. Zack and Aaron – Tap
  4. Jessica and Zack – Broadway
  5. Ricky and Kathryn – Contemporary

 

top 4

 

Final Thoughts
I don’t know how the dancers did it. Doing so many physically demanding routines in a row with barely a break. But they all performed SO well and I have to say that if Jessica, Ricky or Zack win I’ll be completely satisfied. I’ll be totally fine with any of them winning, but my vote goes for Jessica taking home the gold. How am I voting? 10 votes for Jessica, 8 votes for Ricky, 2 votes for Zack. Next week is the finale and it’s too soon! Too soon! Until then my fellow dance lovers…

 

 

 

Fall movies are a time when some franchise YA movies release their next movie, when darker indie films emerge, and Oscar hopefuls reign supreme. The following is a compilation of the movies I’m most excited about through the end of the year.

 

13 MOVIES I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO THIS FALL/WINTER 
(in no particular order)

 

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby
Release Date: Sept 12
Premise: The story revolves around a crumbling marriage between Eleanor (Jessica Chastain) and Conor (James McAvoy). But they each lived a different version to their own story.
My Thoughts: The hook is exciting, the trailer is exciting, and I am intrigued by seeing two sides to the same story.  I would love to see the both versions of the story in its entirety, but I don’t know if I can sit through a 200 minute movie (that version is released in October). The version released this September should suffice.

Maze Runner
Release Date: September 19
Premise: They make their own food, set their own rules, and live each day not knowing what’s going to happen next. Sounds great right? Unfortunately their make-shift world is surrounded by a Maze that doesn’t seem to have a way out during the day, and traps them in at night. If are trapped inside the Maze after dark they die. Thomas presence seems to change the game, especially when the next person dropped into the Maze is a girl.
My Thoughts: I loved the James Dashner book and I am excited to see this movie come to life. Though adaptations of young adult movies can be sketchy, I love the casting of Dylan O’Brien as Thomas and I hope that director Wes Ball can bring the rest of the movie to life. On the plus side, the trailer makes the movie look gritty, which is how these post-apocalyptic movies should be. Less pretty, more gritty.

 

Gone Girl
Release Date: October 3
Premise: On the outside, Nick and Amy seem like a loving couple, but when Amy disappears and Nick’s life is thrown into the spotlight. Under the scrutiny of the media and the community, Nicks involvement in his wife’s disappearance may not be completely innocent.
My Thoughts: I’m in the process of reading the book right now and with the duel narratives, I hope director David Fincher manages to bring this movie together in a cohesive way. The trailers look perfectly creepy and while I don’t really like Ben Affleck as an actor (love him as a director) this role seems perfect for him. I also love Rosamund Pike.

 

Whiplash
Release Date: October 10
Premise: Miles Teller stars as Andrew Neiman as a drumming prodigy who has been accepted into the country’s most elite music conservatory. Haunted by the failures of his father Andrew is taken under the wing of a passionate teacher at the school. Slowly Andrew’s drive to excel and succeed turns into an obsession as his mentor morphs into a domineering tyrant who will push him to his limits no matter what the cost.
My Thoughts: I’ve already hear great things about this film and I’m a big fan of J.K. Simmons and Miles Teller. Plus it’s just indie enough to be absolutely fantastic.

 

Birdman
Release Date: October 17
Premise: A washed up, former A-list actor who used to play the famous super hero Birdman, decides to write a play in order to reclaim some of his former glory. In the process, he suffers a complete mental breakdown.
My Thoughts: The trailer looks dark and hilarious and it has a great cast.

 

St. Vincent
Release Date: October 24
Premise: A cranky, washed up, alcholoic man unexpectedly bonds with his new neighbors, single mother Maggie and her 12 year old son, Oliver.
My Thoughts: Is it weird that my main reason for wanting to see this is not Bill Murry, the bittersweet and funny trailer, but the fact that for the first time since Gilmore Girls, Melissa McCarthy is playing a role that’s not just a bunch of fat jokes, or her acting crazy, or people laughing at her? (Ok, maybe she did that in Mike and Molly as well, but I didn’t watch that.)

 

Interstellar
Release Date: November 7
Premise: If you’re a movie fanatic, lover, watcher, then most likely you’re going to be watching Christopher Nolan’s new movie. Earth is becoming uninhabitable. Cooper, a widowed father and engineer is tasked with being sent into space, along with a group of scientists, to search for an alternate, habitable planet in order for mankind to survive.
My Thoughts: The trailers for this movie are very existential, in fact, it reminds me a lot of Terrence Malick’s, TheTree of Life. That being said, it’s a great cast, the premise is fantastic, and Christopher Nolan always delivers. I’m excited for this movie, I really am. I just hope it explores the actual plot and isn’t just a lot of existential bullcrap.

 

Hero Big 6
Release Date: November 7
Premise: When a masked villain attacks the city of San Fransokyo, Hiro, a robotics prodigy,  tries to find a way to turn his robot, which is designed to heal into a warrior that can save the city.
My Thoughts: Just watch this trailer, and then tell me you don’t want to see it.

 

Dumb and Dumber To
Release Date: November 14
Premise: To best friends Lloyd and Harry are reunited and set out on a search to find Harry’s long lost daughter. Oh, and someone needs a kidney.
My Thoughts: The first Dumb and Dumber can definitely go on the list as one of the greatest comedies of all time, yeah, I said it. And after waiting so long to do a sequel, a REAL sequel, I am excited to see Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniel’s back together again. I look forward to turning off my brain and having a laugh.

 

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
Release Date: November 21
Premise: With Peeta captured by the capitol, and Katniss now relegated to District 13. Haymitch and Plutarch devise a plan to use Katniss status as a beacon of hope and turn her into “The Mockingjay” in hopes the other districts will rebel against the capitol and overthrow Snow and his vicious reign of terror.
My Thoughts: Catching Fire was a big step up from the first installment of The Hunger Games. Keeping true to the book while adapting the movie in ways that made it even better, I have high high hopes for Mockingjay. Quite possibly the darkest and most violent of all the books, I hope that the movie can stick to being dark and gritty, while hopefully changing the depressing ending to the original book.

 

Wild
Release Date: December 5
Premise: After the death of her mother, rebellious, drug addicted, sexually promiscuous, Cheryl Strayed sets out on a solo trek across the America Northwest.
My Thoughts: Reese Witherspoon. The Wild. One ticket please, thanks.

 

Night At The Museum: The Secret Of The Tomb
Release Date: December 19
Premise: Museum security guard, Larry, takes his son with him to London in order to repair the broken stone tablet in London’s British Museum that’s been bring the exhibits to life.
My Thoughts: I was a fan of the first Night At The Museum and now with the death of Robin Williams I somehow want to see this movie even more. It’s just a good holiday movie with a fun premise

 

Into The Woods
Release Date: December 25
Premise: Into the Woods weaves the darker sides of the fairy tale stories such as Cinderella, Rapunzel, Jack and the Bean Stalk, and Little Red Riding Hood.
My Thoughts: When I first saw the original Broadway production of Into the Woods (on video, not live unfortunately) I thought it was the best thing ever. Bernadette Peters was deliciously evil and sympathetic as an evil witch and the stories of the classic fairytales I loved were twisted, dark, gory, and just plain bizarre. The music was incredible; “Giants in the Sky” is probably my favorite Broadway Musical song ever. Despite the fantastic cast, I’m still skeptical that Disney will…well Disney it up, make it more family friendly. We’ve seen family friendly versions of fairytales, we know them well. Into the Woods offers a different take, but the studio can’t really market a gory, gritty, fairytale movie as a family holiday flick. (Note: If anyone could bring justice to the amazing performance Bernadette Peters gave in her role of the witch, it’s Meryl Streep.)

 

What movies are you looking forward to for the end of this year?

 

 

 

 

So You Think You Can Dance
Season 11
Top 4 Revealed

 

Top 6 Perform
Choreographer: Nick Demoura
Song: “Hide”/NASA feat Aynzil Jones
The Top 6 perform a cool and funky hip hop routine with crazy horror movie-like masks on their faces. It’s actually a pretty cool routine. It uses the music well, and I can spot Casey out of the group. He has such a distinct vibe about him I could spot his dancing anywhere.

 

Sparkly disco ball Cat comes out to introduce the guest judge, three-peat Christina and she tells us each dancer will be performing 3 times. Once with each other, once with an All-Star, and once to solo. And also Rixton is performing…So my major question is…who the hell is Rixton?

 

Routine #1: Ricky and Valerie
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “I’ve Got The World On A Strong”/Frank Sinatra
Performance: The happy-go-lucky pair is back together again and the routine is frickin’ adorable. It’s “twin-girls-holding-cotton-candy-running-down-a-hill-chasing-puppies” frickin’ adorable. That’s how adorable it is. They both really get into character. The swing is a super cute idea and there were some cool moments in it. I love the first time Ricky jumps over the moving swing through the ropes. I love when Valerie throws herself into Ricky’s arms. It’s just a feel-good, happy routine. And Ricky’s shoes are insanely distracting. He’s SO matchy matchy.
Judges: Nigel thought they captured the romantic mood. Christina thought she was pure elegance and grace and Ricky is an enigma. Mary found it light and breezy with honesty chemistry.  Grade: A-

 

Routine #2: Jessica and Casey
Choreographer/Style: Doriana Sanchez/Disco
Song: “Dim All The Lights”/Donna Summer
Performance: I gotta say, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Disco routine that’s been this good. Usually it’s a lot of glitz and glamor and flips and spins and lifts and frantic chaos. And while this routine had the first 5 things, there was this cool sense of ease about it. Like they didn’t have a care in the world. It was so much fun. It started out with Casey spinning Jessica around super-fast – I mean seriously faster than normal and it was just uphill from there. I loved seeing the cool disco moves with them dancing side by side. The lifts felt easy and simple (even though they were not) and it looked like they were having a lot of fun out there. I also loved the seemingly abrupt ending. It was just a super fun routine.
Judges: Cat got chills for disco. Mary thought Jessica’s legs were amazing and she loved how classic disco Casey was. Nigel thought it was a lot of fun and he knew how difficult the routine was. Grade: A

 

Routine #3: Jacque and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Fox Trot
Song: “Anything Goes”/Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga
Performance: I’m not really that big of a fan of Jacque, so my eyes were drawn to Zack. I thought they performed really well but the dancing overall was just okay. That being said I thought Zack’s actions were bigger and better than Jacque’s but overall I wasn’t impressed with the routine.
Judges: Mary didn’t think it was smooth enough and Nigel wasn’t thrilled with the performance. Christina didn’t feel like their faces came from a genuine place. Grade: C

 

 

Routine #4: Valerie and All-Star Twitch
Choreographer/Style: Wildabeast/Hip Hop
Song: “Yeah”/Usher feat Lil’ Jon & Ludacris
Performance: This song always makes me think of Hitch, but aside from that and Valerie’s distracting costume. I thought this routine was really cute. I love the mixture of classic wedding dances (did she do a little moon walk there on the table?) and I love that she kept her bubbly personality while still getting down and having fun. It looked like they were having a blast out there. I love when the routine was over you could see Valerie checking with Twitch to make sure she did a good job. I thought she did great and I actually watched her a bit more than I did Twitch. That’s a tall order!
Judges: Nigel thought the routine was a lot of fun. He thinks Valerie is a great performer. Christina thought she was amazing. Mary thought Wildabeast brought the beast out in Valerie. Grade: B+

 

 

Routine #5: Jacque and All-Star Will
Choreographer/Style: Sean Cheeseman/Contemporary
Song: “99 Red Balloons”/Sleeping At Last
Performance: It’s a really pretty routine. I love the use of the red yoga ball in the beginning. It really created some beautiful images. It looked so simple yet difficult at the same time. I thought it was really pretty and they both looked good together.  I didn’t 100% buy their love story, but the dancing was spectacular.
Judging: Mary loved the beginning and she thought the routine was gorgeous. Nigel thought she was brilliant. Grade: B

 

 

Routine #6: Jessica and All-Star Ade
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song: “Boneless”/Steve Aoki, Chris Lake & Tujamo
Performance: The routine looked like it was a lot of fun. It was crazy and it felt almost japanime-like in some instances. Unfortunately I think costume and styling did Jessica a real hindrance. What were those hideous neon green Sasquatch leg warmers on her legs about? I wish she could have just taken those things OFF. And her hair in her faces was definitely distracting. It looked like they were having a lot of fun though and they were into what they were doing. I just wish she was wearing…something else!
Judges: Mary thought the routine was fun, she steals my thing about Sasquatch…Nigel thought the routine was just okay, he didn’t really connect with the routine and Jessica. He also knocks her solo…I know it wasn’t strong but WHAT? Why call her out like that Nigel, seriously. Grade: B-

 

Routine #7: Ricky and All-Star Anya
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Cha-Cha
Song: “Dare (La La La)”/Shakira
Performance: Seriously, Anya cannot and will not be denied. Girl is gorgeous…and just brilliant to watch. She oozes sexy, and like Ricky says she’s a lot of woman. While she definitely steals the show, I think Ricky held his own. If Mary were to say anything about him, I feel like he needed to get down a little more. Overall the routine was sexy and sultry and eye catching.
Judging: Nigel thought Ricky looked like he had been dancing that style for years. Christina thought Ricky was sensational. Mary thought he was a good lead and took some good control. Grade: A-

 

Routine #8: Casey and All-Star Mackenzie
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “Over You”/Ingrid Michaelson feat. A Great Big World
Performance: I actually thought it was quite beautiful. I loved that it was so passionate. Each movement the dancers made had intention and had purpose. I thought the story Casey and Mackenzie told was incredible and I wanted to know more. I really loved Stacey’s choreography in this. There were just some simple subtle dance movements that really caught my eye, Casey running his hand across her outstretched arm, Casey’s turns almost kicking Mackenzie away, the way Casey pushed Mackenzie away. It was very striking and very emotional.
Judges:  Mary thought the movement melted and blended into each other and he had a performance of a lifetime. Nigel loved the story and thought the whole thing made sense. Grade: A

 

Routine #9: Zack and All-Star Fik-Shun
Choreographer/Style: Phillip Chebeeb/Hip Hop
Song: “Sail (Unlimited Gravity Remix)”/AWOLnation
Performance: This routine was like unlike anything I’d every seen on the show. It was really really cool. The movement was so intricate and it was all about the shapes they were making. It was funny, it was exciting, and it was mesmerizing just how cool everything was. Fik-Shun definitely has a happy go lucky vibe about him, and while Zack was more on the serious side (I think he was really thinking about nailing it), I really loved the routine. It made me excited.
Judges: Mary loved it and calls Zack a surprise of the season. (You can see the relief on Zack’s face). Nigel subconsciously insults Zack then realizes what he’s done and takes it back. Christina thinks Zack is a great performer. Cat loves that Zack did his own thing and didn’t try to emulate Fik-Shun. Grade: A-

 

SOLOS

Solo #1: Ricky
Song: “My Tears Are Becoming A Sea”/M83
Performance: Lemme start of by saying, I love it when SYTYCD makes me cry. And seeing Ricky’s Grandma cry over him definitely made the room seem extra dusty at the moment.  Ricky’s solo made me say DAMN. To say it was EPIC would be a severe understatement. Those back kick leaps are freakin’ incredible. I loved his solo and will watch it again. In fact, I’m rewinding my DVR as I write this. Rating: 10/10

Solo #2: Jessica
Song: “I Was Here”/ Beyonce
Jessica’s solo’s are always so full of passion. This solo was a little tamer than others, but she also looked like she was on the verge of tears after her family’s tearful intro package. Though she’s definitely solo’d better, I’m still a fan. Rating: 7/10

Solo #3: Casey
Song: “Lay Me Down”/Sam Smith.
Okay, so first I’m distracted by the fact that Casey’s mother looks Asian. Which means he’s part Asian and it all makes sense now. No wonder I like him. Haha. I just love Casey’s solos. They show so much passion and you can tell he really loves to dance. There’s a lot to see and his song choice is excellent.  Rating: 9/10

Solo #4: Valerie
Song: “What I Like About You”/The Romantics
The blue dress with the black tights, absolutely killer combo. Valerie dazzles in her solo. It’s just so much fun, and goofy, and mesmerizing. I could watch her tap all day. Rating: 8/10

Solo #5: Zack
Song: “Butterfly”/Jason Mraz
I love Zack’s slides. I notice he does them a lot and in a lot of his routines. They’re so fun and cute and they add variety to his performances. The spin at the end of his solo was fantastic. Rating: 7/10

Solo #6: Jacque
Song: “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”/The Andrews Sisters
Her solo was kind of…well…not very special. It was just strange. It didn’t show any personality…and I’m not impressed. If Nigel didn’t like Jessica’s…then he sure as hell didn’t like this. Rating: 4/10

 

My Prediction:
My prediction is that it will be Zack and Jacque going home. No contest the final four should be Ricky, Casey, Jessica and Valerie.

 

Elimination Time:
Casey and Jacque are going home. And WOW that is a shocker I have to say. I mean Casey-wise. I thought for sure he had secured his way into the finals as each performance he has been showing more personality and more skill and dancing his way into my heart.

My Thoughts:
Honestly I think the battle for the winner will be between Jessica and Ricky with Ricky taking it home. He’s been solid all season.

 

Top 5 Performances

  1. Jessica and Casey – Disco
  2. Casey and Mackenzie – Contemporary
  3. Zack and Fik-Shun
  4. Ricky and Anya – Samba
  5. Ricky and Valerie – Broadway

 

Random Thoughts

  • I LOVE the fact that Cat showed a rehearsal clip of Ricky and Valerie’s Broadway routine where her dress gets caught in the swing. It’s adorable and also hilarious.
  • Jessica’s hair in the disco routine is INSANE.
  • Rixton performs. No clue who they are until they start singing. Oh, that song. I actually like it. I guess I won’t fast forward like I usually do during these sorts of performances.
  • I thought the red balloons falling down during Jacque and Will’s routine was a little too cheesy…does that make me dead inside?
  • Anyone else think Christina Applegate is off her judging game this week? She’s not saying much at all.

Final Thoughts
I put in 15 votes for Ricky and 5 for Jessica, though I have to say if Casey were in I would have split it evenly between Casey and Ricky. Next week is going to be so exciting and I can’t wait to see some of my favorite routines. Especially the Jessica/Casey/Travis Wall routine from a few weeks ago. How do you feel about the final four? Do you think it should be Casey instead of Zack? I think the guys were really strong this season but the right two girls are going to the final. Most definitely. As for who will take home the gold? Ricky…I mean come on, it’s Ricky.

 

 

 

 

So You Think You Can Dance

Season 11
Top 8 Perform, 2 Eliminated

 

Being toted as a “A Very Special SYTYCD”, today, the dancers will be paying tribute to Michael Jackson. Now is it just me or does the phrase “Very Special SYTYCD” scare you. I mean we saw what happened with the Very Special Mia Michaels Tribute episode right? I’m also skeptical about the choreographers being boxed into creating performances around only Michael Jackson songs. Sometimes when you have certain restraints the dancing can feel restrained. But I guess we shall see. Maybe I’ll eat my words. Sometimes my words can be fun to eat.

 

Group Performance: Top 8
Choreographer: Travis Payne (MJ’s choreographer)
Song: “Place With No Name”
Performance: Random thought,  Jacque looks like Selena Gomez during this dance, is that a weird thing to say? The dance is cool, and funky, and for the most part they all do the same sharp moves, which is super cool, but also points out all the flaws. Ricky starts out in the forfront as is usual for these group dances, but each person gets their own moment to shine which is nice. Well except for Zack, he doesn’t really get a moment.

 

Cat comes out looking fabulous. I mean seriously fabulous. She looks so chic in that white dress with the cape in the back and the white belt. That dress is adorable! Per Instagram, Cat says that dress is an Alexander McQueen, which means it’s breathtaking as well as expensive…as most things are. The guest judge is none other than Channing Tatum wife. Oh, what she has an actual name? It’s Jenna Dewan-Tatum, former dancer/actress/wife to Channing Tatum.

 

The Performances

 

Solo #1: Tanisha
Song: “Warrior”/Havana Brown
Performance: I appreciate that it’s not the typical ballroom routine. It has some flips and tricks that makes it exciting, and her skirt is amazing. Matte black on the outside, shiny/sparkly black on the inside. It really makes her stand out. Grade: B+

 

Couple Performance #1: Ricky and All-Star Jaimie
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “Smile”
Performance: The routine was really pretty. It was almost as if they were doing a Viennese Waltz but in the air. There were so many lifts it was crazy. But it definitely showed off Ricky’s flexibility and technique. The thing I love about Travis’ choreography is that he always finds ways to push the envelope. When coming down from their lifts, the dancers never just landed straight down on their feet, they always landed creatively, whether it be to the side, into a leap, into a turn. And that movie where Ricky picks Jaimie up and spins her around by her shoulders is really fantastic. I’ve never really been that big of a fan of Jaimie. I’ve never been able to connect with her, but she was great in this piece, even if I focused more on Ricky (as I rightfully should). Nothing was really WOW in this piece, but collectively it was a pretty spectacular routine.
Judging: Jenna thinks this piece really highlighted his extension and it blew her away. Mary says it was perfection. Nigel feels like there were some really difficult moves in the piece but that Ricky doesn’t just dance and excel at it, he transcends it. Grade: A-
Ricky’s Status: Safe, was there any doubt?

 

Solo#2: Zack
Song: “Gotta Get Through This (Acoustic Version)”/Daniel Beddingfield
Performance: I’ve missed seeing Zack tap dance. Though he had a little slip in his solo, I loved how he used the entire stage. He looked calm, cool, and in control and looked adorable in his hat. Honestly, I could watch tap dancing forever. Grade: A-

 

Couple Performance #2: Valerie and All-Star Ryan
Choreographer/Style: Jean-Marc Genereux/Samba
Song: “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’
Performance:  First of all YOWZA! Valerie looks HOT. They gave her extensions, and then a dress with no underwear. Haha, I would be SO scared to dance in something like that. The beginning was definitely a bit awkward, even though she was smiling you could see her dancing the moves in her head. You could see her thinking about it. But halfway through, once they got into the rolls she really let herself go and she became more relaxed. That made the performance much more enjoyable. I don’t know technicality-wise how she did, but I thought she looked great and wore the style well, even if it wasn’t perfect. And I love that she doesn’t pull those cheesy ballroom faces (mouth open, dramatic gasping, looking like someone stepped on her toe), she just dances as herself.
Judges: Mary said she attacked it and if Mary is happy, you know the girl did well. Nigel said Valerie showed us how to dance today. Jenna says Valerie has amazing spirit, but she was also super sexy today. Grade: B
Valerie’s Status: Safe! Yes! I think it was my 6 votes.

 

Solo #3: Casey
Song: “Outro”/ M83
Performance: Casey is definitely a different dancer than from the beginning of the show. He just lets it all go. His solo is so mesmerizing. I love that he’s FINALLY broken out of his shell. Grade: A

 

Solo #4: Rudy
Song: “Warrior”/ Drehz
Performance: Rudy gives a strong, powerful, shirtless performance. The kind that Nigel loves. He shows off his musicality and I can’t help thinking he needs a red cape in his hands. Grade: B

 

Couple Performance #3: Casey and All-Star Comfort
Choreographer: Pharside and Phoenix/Hip Hop
Song: “Xscape”
Performance: I don’t know how I feel about this routine. I think it almost became too much about the concept. Especially in the beginning. It was more posturing, less dancing. But that’s not the dancers fault. That’s the choreographers fault. I have to say Casey was really sexy in this piece. It was a whole different side then we’ve seen from him. The best parts were the parts when they danced side by side. Their chemistry seemed a bit off, but it’s also because they are polar opposites. Casey is more quiet and reserved and Comfort is wild and crazy and out of control so their different styles didn’t really seem to fuse. I’m not sure if I liked it or not. I think if you break it down to pieces and individual performances, I liked it. But as a whole it was lacking something.
Judging: Nigel says Casey is growing so much on the show. Jenna says his presence takes over the stage and she loved his performance. Mary says he was strong and committed and it got better as it went on Grade: B
Casey is: IN THE BOTTOM? What?  (please, please don’t tell me the bottom 2 are Casey and Zack! I won’t be able to pick!)

 

Solo #5: Jacque
Song: “Nocturne in C Sharp Minor, (Op. Posth.): Lento”/Dejan Lazic & Pieter Wispelwey
Performance: She does a ballet solo and I have to say I love it. I’m a sucker for ballet. It’s graceful and sweet. Grade: B+

 

 

Couple Performance #4: Tanisha and All-Star Nick
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “She’s Out Of My Life”
Performance: First, is it terrible to say whenever I hear this song I think of the N’SYNC version first? Second, as for the routine, it was quite lovely. I have to say though Nick definitely stole the show. The two didn’t really have much chemistry and with such a great song and tender routine they really needed to sell the chemistry. Nick, on the otherhand is amazing, his leaps, his jumps, and he was winner Season 1, 11 years ago. Think about that!
Judges: Jenna says she loved the dancing, but that she wanted more from her performance. Mary says that Tanisha can do anything. Nigel says she’s such a strong dancer with a great core, but that she needs to show her vulnerable side more.  Grade: B-
Tanisha’s status: In the bottom.

 

Solo #6: Jessica
Song: “Taking Chances”/Celine Dion
Performance: Jessica just explodes all over the stage with her performance. Part Celine’s vocals, part strong dancing, Jessica just has this energy and presence that cannot be denied. So far her solo is my favorite of the night, purely on energy alone. Grade: A

 

Couple Performance #5: Rudy and All-Star Allison
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song: “Dirty Diana”
Performance: Rudy, I love ya kid, but put you next to Allison and she will eat you ALIVE and she does. Allison just had a completely different energy than Rudy did. She left it all on the floor. Her being my favorite dancer it’s impossible for me not to look at her. I couldn’t keep my eyes off her. And while Rudy danced great and showed a lot of strength, I feel like he could have done more. He didn’t grab me or fight for my attention. And with such a dramatic song and routine like this he really needed to do that. Instead he let Allison overshadow him. He had an outstanding partner, a bad ass choreographer, and a great routine, he just didn’t live up to its demands. I wonder what the judges think since I know they love him.
Judges: Mary loved it. Nigel was invested in the story but felt sometimes Rudy fell out of character a bit. He thinks this routine elevated Rudy to another level. Jenny thinks Rudy held his own. (Upon second glance, I see what the judges are talking about, but Allison still stole the show.)
Rudy’s Grade: B // Routine and Allison Grade: A
Rudy’s Status: Bottom Two

 

Solo #7: Valerie
Song: “Dance With Me Tonight”/Olly Murs
Performance: Valerie makes me happy. That’s all I have to say. Grade: B+

 

 

Couple Performance #6: Zack and Mackenzie
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “The Way You Make Me Feel”
Performance: This song is probably one of my favorite Michael Jackson songs. And it always makes me think of Center Stage when I hear it. While I don’t think his character really exuded cool (maybe he needed a leather jacket or something) I thought he danced it really well. They had a lot of chemistry together and it was just a lot of fun. Though it was nothing WOW, they entertained me. I really want Zack to have a breakout moment.
Judges: Nigel is proud of Zack, Jenna thought Zack had a lot of control and personality. He put everything out there. Mary can feel Zack’s spirit and he’s a pro. Grade: B
Zack’s Status: Zack is SAFE! Yay!

 

Solo #8: Ricky
Song: “Haegt, Kemur Ljosio”/Olafur Arnalds
Performance: You can tell how much in love everyone is with Ricky and what he did in his solo is why. He shows technique, he shows musicality, he shows personality, and he just lights up the stage. He’s very similar to Jessica in the way he just enjoys the moment. There’s a reason why everyone loves him, and this is it. Grade: A-

 

Couple Performance #7: Jacque with All-Star Twitch
Choreographer/Style: Dave Scott/Hip Hop
Song: “Slave to the Rhythm”
Performance: Is it weird for me to say I am distracted by Jacque’s stomach? It’s so toned! Moving along I have to say this routine was pretty spectacular. Jacque was dirty, she got low, she was in the groove, she felt the music. I liked that it was more mature and intricate and it gave her a chance to actually dance and not just act like some of the routines we’ve seen.
Judges: They thought Jacque was having a party with it. Nigel noticed Jacque used different muscles and really challenged herself. She has swag. Grade: B+
Jacque’s Status: She’s in the bottom

 

Couple Performance #8: Jessica and All-Star Will
Choreographer/Style: Mandy Moore/Contemporary
Song: “Earth Song”
Performance: This routine had so many CRAZY tricks that showcased just how strong of a core Jessica has. I mean she was doing some crazy one handed moves that I don’t think anyone could pull off. I love the shapes they made and that danger element with each move. And I love how they’d make one formation, and then it would morph into another formation. It really was quite gorgeous. I loved the move where she fell down Will with one leg out then he picked her up and she switched legs.  And crazy thinking, but Jessica reminded me a lot of Allison Holker in that routine. Performance and acting wise. Does anyone else get that sense? Like she could be the next Allison?
Judges: Mary says what Jessica has been producing is extraordinary. She thought she looked terrific, and outside of the crazy tricks it’s the passion that sold it for her. Nigel calls her one of his favorite performer. She was magnificent. Jenna thinks Jessica is the dancer that pops and flourishes. And it was her favorite routine of the night.  Grade: A
Jessica’s Status: Hello, safe, have you been paying attention?

 

Bottom Four:
Casey, Rudy, Jacque, and Tanisha

My Prediction:
In a perfect world Casey gets to stay. As for the girls, I never really connected with either of these girls, but Jacque may have a slight edge because of the ballet, then again Tanisha has been having strong performances. I don’t know who I’d pick to stay, but I’d be find with either of them going home, is that a weird thing to say. As for Rudy, I love him, but I’ve enjoyed Casey’s body of work more. And I just love that kid as a dancer and performer, he’s really broken out.

 

Elimination
Rudy and Tanisha.

 

My Thoughts:
I think Rudy knew it. He was crying before anything happened. On the tears on his face just breaks my heart. I’m okay with this. I’m glad that Casey gets to stay, but ugh Rudy is breaking my heart right now!

 

Top 5 Favorite Routines

  1. Jessica and Will – Contemporary
  2. Rudy and Allison – Jazz
  3. Ricky and Jaimie – Contemporary
  4. Valerie and Ryan – Samba
  5. Zack and Mackenzie – Broadway

Next Week Who’s Dancing With Who

  • Ricky and All-Star Anya
  • Valerie and All-Star Twitch
  • Zack and All-Star Fik-Shun
  • Jessica and All-Star Ade
  • Casey and All-Star Mackenzie
  • Jacque and All-Star Will

 

 

Final Thoughts:
Zack holding Rudy? I can’t even take it. Is it weird to say I wanted to see more of the dancers comforting each other? Sometimes seeing them cry over each other leaving is what makes me like the dancers even more and I think reavealing the all-stars kind of ruins that moment. Is that a weird thing to say too? I mean I guess it ends the show on a happier note, but give me my drama. I like my drama. Anyway! I’m so glad my favorites are still in: Ricky, Valerie, Zack, Jessica and now Casey. My guess for the final 4? Ricky, Casey, Valerie and Jessica. I LOVE Zack to death, but I don’t think he’s going to make it with the performance he had this week. Can you believe we only have 2 shows left?! Unreal! Until next week my friends!

 

 

 

Michael Bay’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was even more terrible than I ever imagined it could be. I didn’t realize it was possible, but I feel like all the technological advances did this movie reboot more harm than good. I went into the movie expecting to hate-watch it, and I came out of it with longing to see the movie I grew up with. Give me foam, animatronic, Jim Henson puppeteered Turtles over dark, over stuffed, creepy CGI Turtles with Angelina Jolie lips any day!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Directed By: Jonathan Liebesman
Starring: Megan Fox, Will Arnett, Alan Ritchson, Johnny Knoxville, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Pete Polszek, Tony Shalhoub, William Fichtner, Danny Woodburn

 

 

My review for this movie will be in the form of a list. I’m pretty sure you can get the point:

 

Things I Thought While Hate-Watching Teenage Ninja Turtles
**WARNING **
**There are some SPOILERS ahead, but really, I’m doing you a favor**

 

  • Why do the Turtles have lips? (And they kinda look like Shrek…)
  • Splinter looks terrible. He has a nose like a dog and not enough fur.
  • Why is Shredder a Transformer?
  • She’s been in snow, rain, and sewage, how is Megan Fox’s hair so perfectly dry?
  • Why is the Donatello (the smart Turtle) so cliché nerdy? With the gadgets, glasses with tape on it, smart speak etc.
  • Why is there so much exposition? Like, the entire movie is exposition.
  • Why do the characters tell us what’s happening before it happens, while it’s happening, then what happened after it happens? (aka, man, this writing is terrible)
  • Why didn’t April show the pictures of the Turtles to her Editor to make her believe her?
  • Megan Fox cannot carry this entire movie by herself.
  • Megan Fox should have a stronger side-kick then Will Arnett who only provides comic relief lines.
  • Speaking of comedians, this movie had a lot of them, too bad none of them did or said anything funny: Taran Killam, Abby Elliott, Whoopi Goldberg  were all severely underused.
  • The actors did a lot of screaming each other’s names in this movie. Just in case we didn’t know who was who.
  • Contrary to popular believe, people don’t want to sit in movies hearing about how hot the lead character is every other sentence. Megan Fox is hot, we get it. You don’t need to beat us over the head with it. At least there wasn’t an obligatory bikini, wet shirt, or e-fan/windblown shot to emphasize it even more.
  • The Turtles were her pets? Seriously?
  • Thank GOD, there wasn’t a love story.
  • For a movie not being directed by Michael Bay (it was only produced by Bay) Jonathan Liebesman sure used a lot of Michael Bay staples (same shots, noises, actors…)
  • Liebesman missed the perfect moment for the Turtles to say “Cowabunga” and instead when they did say it, it was cut off and well anti-climactic because the Turtles told us it was coming.
  • More pizza!
  • The movie was at its strongest when the Turtles worked together. And by far the greatest sequence was the snow sequence. I have to say the dark looking Turtles look amazing against the white snow. It was a beautiful palette.
  • Why did the entire reporter plot disappear and not circle back at the end?

I watched this movie purely out of curiosity. I knew I wasn’t going to like it. I knew it was going to be terrible. But I’m a movie buff and I had to watch it. While this movie got the dynamics between the Turtle brothers right, it pretty much got everything else wrong. I know Hollywood likes to remake, reboot, reinterpret, and mess with things in the hopes of making them more modern. But modern doesn’t have to mean louder and flashier. Sometimes I think big action filmmakers forget that…

 

Rating: 1 1/2 Stars

 

“Cowabunga!”