- Most importantly, it seems -- with perhaps one or two exceptions -- a pretty strong group. The one thing I was really rooting for was for Eliana Girard to make the Top 20. Her audition, a combination of ballet and contemporary (if I remember correctly), was my favorite. The first thing I always notice about dancers is how high they jump; the second is how much effort it seems to take to reach full extension when throwing legs around and what-not; the third is how light they seem on their feet. For Eliana's audition, the answers seemed to be very, none, and very. She seemed to float less in the group ballet on the selection episode, but she's still my favorite. And yet there seems to be an endless supply of pretty good dancers, or at least pretty good auditioners this year.
- Though, and I say this every year, I think the women are stronger than the men. That's true of dance in general, isn't it?
- There was a woman Spacewoman knew in law school who was perfectly nice, but who for the longest time Spacewoman thought was mean because she suffered from bitchface. You know, bitchface. Think Eli Manning. When the judges say that Alexa Anderson -- a talented, determined, and pretty dancer -- is not connecting with the audience, or lacks performance, what they are saying is "you have bitchface." Alexa Anderson's dance face is Kristen Stewart's acting face. Not her fault, but the voters don't care about fault.
- State-of-the-art in dancewear this year are the high-waisted short shorts. Take an ordinary pair of shorts and force the bottom third of the fabric to relocate north of the beltline. The effect is akin to a diaper, or Betty Draper's granny panties, or a pair of overfilled water balloons suspended in a makeshift sling. Just as a general rule, there is not a single person in the world -- even skinny dancers with the bodies of world-class athletes -- on whom these are flattering. And they are even worse for dancing, because they visually bifurcate the torso and mess up the lines people are trying to make with their bodies. Must I wait a whole season or two for these to go out of style?
- State-of-the-art in dancer this year is curly-haired brunette. I approve. Though I will have a hard time telling them apart for the first four weeks.
- Shorthand for "you dance well, but weird" is now "Sonya Tayeh will love working with you." I wonder if she watches the auditions and goes, "eh." Usually when the judges say that, what they mean is that the dancer is ungainly-looking, didn't jump very high, jerked around a bunch, and didn't do any extension. But people who can do regular dance? They can do that stuff too. Tayeh's best work on this show was "The Garden," danced by Courtney, an NBA cheerleader who was about as mainstream as contemporary gets. You don't think Tayeh is excited to work with Eliana?
- I thought they cut the martial-arts contemporary guy, who I find embarrassing. Why is he here? He is like The Miz before The Miz was an actual wrestler.
- How embarrassing would it be to be Mia Michaels, to make a huge emotional deal about leaving SYTYCD to pursue other things, and then to be right back after a single season off? If you commit to the dramatic farewell, I feel like you should be stuck with it. Or, like I said with Roger Clemens, once they give you the parade and the Hummer, you have to stay retired.
- Three ballet dancers? They're setting a high barre. [groan]
- Where did these steppers come from? And the ballroom guy? And the blonde African-American girl? Serious pimpage deficiency.
- Also, Will Thomas? Nine of the guys on this show have abs like teen-movie werewolves, and Will Thomas looks like when nobody is watching he eats the Funyons he finds under the couch.
- Worst all-around dancer since Season 2 has to be Cyrus Spencer. He is so likeable, and I enjoy his Ragnarok-flavored popping, but clearly they just didn't have any good all-around hip-hoppers this season. He can't use his legs at all, and the judges are going to kill him week after week, and maybe they just should have had the whole Dragonhouse Crew just come do stuff while the judges deliberated. Nobody wants to see Cyrus try to quick-step.
Thursday, June 28, 2012
NEVER PRACTICE YOUR BACK FLIP IN SOCKS ON A HOTEL LOBBY CARPET: I've been remiss -- a whole season of auditions for So You Think You Can Dance has gone by with scarcely a comment from me, or from the even-more-absent K. Cos. But I rectify! Herewith, my thoughts on the Top 20 and various related topics, while last night is still fresh in my mind. I promise my thoughts will be long and disconnected. Dance specialists (Janet), please chime in:
Posted by Isaac Spaceman at 11:56 PM