The show opens with a very weird, very plaid, very 80’s dance routine. It’s got a great vibe to it and it is high energy. It reminds me a lot of Sonya Tayeh’s choreography. The costuming and make up is totally on point, even with the creepy mannequin in the back. (Song: “Love Is Free” by Robyn & La Bagstelle Magiqur feat. Maluca. Choreographed by: Nick Florez and RJ Durrell).
SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE: SEASON 12
Top 16: Perform and Someone Is FINALLY Eliminated
Cat emerges to introduce the dancer and tell us that Team Stage won but only by the smallest of margins. 50.5% Team Stage, 49.5% Team Street.
I also notice after the intros that Neptune was all by himself. That means someone is missing. Who is it? Did someone get hurt? It’s Derek! He injured himself for the week, poor guy! If he isn’t in the bottom 6 this week he will automatically be in the bottom next week.
Who: Hailee (Team Stage) and JaJa (Team Street)
Choreographer: Ray Leeper
Song: “Endangered Species” by Dianne Reeves
Performance: It’s definitely an anthem song. It’s a hard hitting piece and JaJa is the stand out. There’s just something that makes that girl stick out. The piece uses the dancers well, forcing them to rely on each other and stay in sync. There’s no crazy flips it’s just pure, raw, dirty fun. Grade: B
Judges: Nigel calls the girls powerhouses. Paula says JaJa keeps growing and Hailer radiates. Jason tells JaJa to work on her leg extensions which is surprisingly helpful.
Who: Alexia (Team Stage) and Neptune (Team Street)
Style: Hip Hop
Choreographer: Dave Scott
Song: “Flex (Ooh Ooh Ooh)” by Rich Homie Quan
Performance: There were definitely some cool things that happened in this routine. Alexia’s back flip off the wall, or this weird spin flip she did that ended on his back. But as much as I like Alexia I felt like she was trying TOO hard. All her face pulling was totally distracting. You’re already in a leather jacket dancing hip hop, no need for the “stank face”. While Alexia’s dancing was labored Neptune danced with ease. He had this carefree, smooth, slick way about him that was totally appealing. Great choreography, great music, great concept, great dancing, poor facial expressions. Grade: B-
Judges: Paula loved it. Nigel said Alexia is getting better and Neptune is the dark horse.
Who: JJ and Derek
Style: Argentine Tango
Choreographers: Miriam and Leonardo
Song: “Duo De Amor” by Astor Piazzolla
Performance: As bad as I feel for Derek hurting his back and being unable to compete, I don’t know if this routine would have been nearly as enjoyable as it was without him. JJ hit the jackpot being able to dance with her choreographer, Leonard. She really needed this moment to shine. And boy did she. The routine was intimate and sexy and captivating. JJ was alluring and totally connected to her partner. Her legs did crazy bends and lifts and twists. She didn’t look like a street dancer at all, she looked like she had been doing the tango all her life. It was a stunning routine and performance. Grade: A-
Judges: Jason calls it unbelievable and knows how hard she worked. Nigel brings back the hot tamale train and says the word “sensual” in a way that creeps me out. Paula calls her lovely and sensational.
Who: Ariana (Team Street) and Jim (Team Stage)
Choreographer: Sean Cheeseman
Song: “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” by Lorde
Performance: I loved Jim rolling underneath Ariana as she rolled over him, I loved Jim’s flying leaps, I loved the use of those slanting tables. I loved the way Ariana wrapped herself around Jim, and I loved that ending final kick to Ariana aka depression Jim gave. This piece was really good, but at the same time it was missing something. I really wanted Ariana to attack Jim, wrap herself around him. I wanted more grit. See Mia Michaels Gravity. It was a great piece set to great music but there could have been more! Grade B-
Judges: Nigel acknowledges that Ariana hasn’t been able to connect with the audience (true) but calls her brilliant. Paula loves that the routine showcased their dancing ability. She is blown away. Jason calls her dancing unreal and calls Jim out on his excellent technique.
Who: Virgil (Team Street) and Gaby (Team Stage)
Choreographer: Al Blackstone
Song: “Where or When” by Sammy Davis Jr
Performance: Words cannot express how happy Virgil and Gaby’s package made me. It was totally hilarious! Their joyous and playful personalities really came out in their performance and it was just a lot of fun. Gaby looked stunning and a little bit like that one girl from Top Model, Analeigh Tipton. Virgil will always put a smile on my face. I loved the move where he picked himself up from the splits, I loved their high kicks, and I loved her dipping him. An overall fun, joyful routine. Grade: A
Judges: Paula calls Gaby impeccable, Virgil brings out so much joy. Jason says Virgl breathes life into everything and they were amazing. Nigel calls them brilliant.
Who: Asaf (Team Street) and Kate (Team Stage)
Choreographer: Sean Cheeseman
Song: “Braveheart” by Neon Jungle
Performance: Ok, seriously, it’s time for Asaf to go home. That fear and concern in Kate’s face was absolutely heartbreaking. She doesn’t trust Asaf. And then to see that all the lifts in the routine were taken out was really disheartening, that means he couldn’t get it together enough to pull it off. No Cinderella story for him. As for the routine and dancing in general, it was just okay, but maybe that’s because I was too distracted by trying to see if there were going to be any lifts or not. Grade: C
Judges: Compliments all around but I don’t understand it. Maybe I need to watch the routine again.
Who: Marissa (Team Stage) and Yorelis (Team Street)
Style: Hip Hpp
Choreographer: Christopher scott
Song: “Let Go” by Kezwik feat Mimi Page
Performance: Marissa didn’t quite fit the part. Yorelis just has this presence about her that makes it look so easy. It wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t a memorable performance. Grade: C
Judges: More compliments and adjectives. YAWN. Jason says it falls short of other performances he’s seen. Wow. I actually agree with Jason.
Who: Megz (Team Street) and Edson (Team Stage)
Choreographer: Talia Favoa
Song: “You There” by Aquilo
Performance: I’m a fan. A total fan of this piece. There is something alluring about this piece. Megz is amazing. I couldn’t take my eyes off of it. She and Edson were like one. It was so beautiful so emotional and it was like they were in their own little world. I loved the way they connected and they just shut everything else out. I LOVE that Megz wasn’t in a baby doll flowy dress. Love love love this piece. Grade: A
Judges: I agree with Cat. It was fresh! Jason calls it the best performance of the night.
Song: “Commas” by Future
Performance: I miss seeing the dances dance in their own style. This routine really allowed their attitudes, their personalities, their swag to shine through. It was clean, it was wildly controlled, they all danced as one. Loved it. Grade: A-
Choreographer: Travis Wall
Song: “Beautiful Friends” by Helen Money
Performance: So much to love about this piece. Camera work, lighting, music, dancing, make up, costuming and use of props. It was so creative! I love how the dancers worked with the camera and the tricky camera work and lighting allowed the dancers to really look like they were ghosts. So frickin cool! I loved how the music crescendoed as they all danced as one. Goosebumps people goosebumps. Grade: A
Team Routine Winner (In My opinion): Team Stage
JJ – Team Street
Derek – Team Stage
Ariana – Team Street
Kate – Team Stage
Asaf – Team Street
Marissa – Team Stage
Asaf better be going home. JJ and Kate better be safe.
Twitter saves: JJ and Derek
Judges Save: Kate and Ariana
Eliminated: Marissa and Asaf
While a less controversial elimination, I’m glad Asaf is gone. Also, I kinda wish Marissa was staying over Derek.
Top Five Routines
- Virgil and Gaby – Broadway
- Megz and Edson – Contemporary
- Team Stage Group Routine
- JJ – Argentine Tango
- Hailee and Ja Ja – Jazz
- Love Cat laughing during the intro of Asaf, “He didn’t do that during rehearsal!”
- Cat about Virgil, “Small but perfectly formed.”
- JJ is adorable
- This quote by Megz: “This piece is letting me be my true self.”
- Nigel: “Finally a shirt came off for a good reason.”
Cat: “So you say.”
In danger next week? Derek of course, but I don’t know who else! It only gets harder from here people. My vote is still for Ja Ja take the whole shebang! Should it be noted all the dancers are rallied against Marissa? And Asaf is all alone? Good riddance I say.