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‘So You Think You Can Dance:’ Top 20 revealed!

June
5

It’s ON, people!

We’ve now got our Top 20 dancers – whoo hoo! – so we can start rooting for our favorites.

Unfortunately, I don’t know who my favorites are yet, do you?

Seriously, I couldn’t pick half of the finalists out of a lineup right now.

Kayla? Ashley? Jonathan? Totally clueless.

Melissa only stands out for me because she seems oddly obsessed with wearing a tutu.

Vitolio? I don’t remember him at all from the auditions. (Although NOW I know who he is, thanks to last night’s disgusting “diarrhea moment” comment.)

There are one or two who rub me the wrong way at the moment – and I’ll admit that it’s for completely random and unfair reasons. For example, I’ve despised Asuka from the moment she stepped onstage, even going back to her auditions in past seasons, simply because she has a tendency to wink a lot. I don’t like winkers.

So who are the standouts for me at the moment? My love is growing for fellow New Yorker Tony Bellissimo, who knows he’s not the most talented contestant – but he’s a fighter. It seems like he’s gonna bust his butt trying to win this competition.

I like Kupono for having the guts to shave his head, after the judges commented about his quirky, feminine look. Plus, I kept comparing him to last season’s Mark – so this helps distinguish him.

As for the girls, Paris catches my eye for a reason I can’t quite put my finger on.

Otherwise, the field is wide open for me! Want to know a bit more about the Top 20 to make your own preliminary selections?

Click through to read a short bio on each of them, which includes their hometowns and dance experience.

But before I do that, I’ve got to comment on the Alex Wong situation. That guy was a complete lock – for both the fans and the judges – for the Top 20. And he TOTALLY deserved it, too.

So why, why, WHY did the producers let him get so far when they knew FULL WELL that he was under contract with the Miami Ballet Co.?

Because it’s good TV, that’s why. (Of course.) Still, keeping him on was incredibly unfair to Alex, who seemed to sincerely think he had a shot.

Even more, it was unfair to the viewing audience, who had no clue about Alex’s potential conflict and some of whom had already started rooting for him. A cheap move to bump up the episode’s drama, when it wasn’t really needed. For shame, Nigel. For shame.

Anyway, let’s find out some more about our current Top 20, shall we? Let’s start with the girls…

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, June 5th, 2009 at 8:35 am |
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‘So You Think You Can Dance:’ Vegas Week, baby, yeah!!!

June
4

It was the annual Vegas bloodbath on “So You Think You Can Dance,” the week when Nigel, Mary and the show’s increasingly long list of guest judges/choreographers (Adam Shankman, delightful; Lil C, useless) ruthlessly slash 170-plus dancers down to the contest’s Top 20.

And when I say “slash,” I almost mean it literally. Did this season’s Vegas Week seem unusually brutal to you?

In particular, Mia Michaels seemed crankier than usual: She was practically salivating as she threatened dancers with her new catchphrase, “I’m a cutter.” By the end of her contemporary boot camp, I was half-expecting her to shank somebody right up there on the stage.

So, yes, the judges were harsh, especially on those dancers who they’d built up based on their city-by-city auditions.

But how to explain their super-quick rejection of poor Natalie Reid (who deserved a better explanation than being merely “disappointing”), yet giving second and even third chances to folks like Gabi Rojas (who couldn’t even master basic steps in several choreography rounds) or Tony Bellissimo (who was allowed a do-over of Mia’s routine instead of dancing for his life)?

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, June 4th, 2009 at 8:14 am |
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‘So You Think You Can Dance’ starts Season 5 auditions

October
27

OK, wasn’t it just yesterday that we crowned Joshua Allen the lord of “So You Think You Can Dance”?

win_u1h0013.jpgWell, I guess August wasn’t exactly yesterday. But it seems way too soon to be hearing about upcoming auditions for next summer’s season!

Either way, the show kicks off its latest search on Thursday, Nov. 13 in New York City—WHEE!

I’m particularly excited because “Dance” ignored NYC during the last go-round, preferring to focus on cities like Salt Lake City and Milwaukee. And while I’ve got nothing but love for middle staters, let’s be honest: Those auditions didn’t exactly yield super-talent.

(Here’s where all you Gev and Thayne lovers point out that two of last season’s Top 10 boys hailed from Utah. To which I say: Yeah, yeah, yeah…)

Anyway, here’s the deets on the Big Apple date:

WHEN: Registration begins at 8:00 AM on Thursday, Nov. 13

WHERE: Mark Morris Dance Center,  3 Lafayette Ave,  Brooklyn, NY. http://markmorrisdancegroup.org/the_dance_center

Additional dates and venues for Denver, Los Angeles, Memphis, Miami and Seattle will be announced shortly.

Keep watching www.fox.com/dance for more info.

(Photo courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Monday, October 27th, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
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‘So You Think You Can Dance’ finalist to strut with the ‘Stars’

August
25

I normally don’t blog about ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” Nothing against the show—I know people love it – but I’m just not into D-listers hauling their carcasses (and dying careers) across a stage.

As Remote Access readers know, if I’m going to watch a dance show, I’ll watch my summertime favorite, “So You Think You Can Dance,” where, you know, actual DANCERS compete.

But I may have to break my DWTS rule, and start watching the upcoming season, which kicks off Sept. 22.

Why? Well, ABC just announced its lineup of contestants—keep reading to see the complete list—which includes such personalities as reality diva Kim Kardashian, Olympian Misty May-Traynor and singer Toni Braxton.

I’m not so interested in the main contestants, but I am looking forward to seeing one particular professional dance partner who’s joined the show.

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Lacey Schwimmer—a finalist on SYTYCD’s Season 3 and the sister of the show’s Season 2 winner, Benji Schwimmer—will make her series debut teamed up with former ‘N SYNCer Lance Bass.

Of course, there’s no mention of Lacey’s connection to that OTHER dance show in her ABC bio. She’s simply referred to as the 2006 U.S. Youth Latin Champ and 2007 World Swing Dance Champ.

But I’m guessing more than a few SYTYCD fans will be tuning in to see how our Season 3 sexpot does in this contest.

You want more? Okay, okay!

Click through to read the full run-down of the 13 pseudo-celebrities who’ll be waltzing across your screen next month—and their partners:

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Monday, August 25th, 2008 at 1:41 pm |
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And the winner of ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ is…

August
7

JOSHUA!!!

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For the first time, America chose a street dancer as their favorite—and the Texas boy with the strength of a stallion couldn’t have been more humble about it.

“Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something,” he said tearfully after winning the title, $250,000 and a featured role in guest judge Adam Shankman’s next film, “Step Up 3D.”

WHEE!

Was Joshua the best technical dancer in the Top 10?

Nope, those honors went to Will and Katee (who I was surprised to see come in third, but she got a Top Girl consolation prize of $50,000).

But as many of the judges kept saying, Joshua showed the most heart—and that’s what inspired America to vote.

Really, even if he wasn’t your first choice, how could you not be happy for the guy? Talent aside, he appears to be a genuine sweetheart—someone you could really root for.

Speaking of genuine, how about that runner-up Twitch? What a gentleman!

winner_u1h9889.jpgHe seemed honestly happy for his pal, even hoisting Josh’s arm with a victory whoop. (Before being unceremoniously shoved offstage, that is.)

And poor Courtney. Even she knew she didn’t have a chance in hell of winning—yet she was still quite gracious about placing fourth.

That said, the rest of the finale was a big improvement over last year: The obligatory musical group (the Jonas Brothers) aside, the guests were all focused on dance.

From the season’s most memorable numbers to Cirque du Soleil’s weirdly wonderful “Homage to the Rabbits” to the Top 20 performance with a bunch of our favorite SYTYCD old-timers (Neil, Travis, Lauren, yay!), the show was truly a lot of fun without feeling forced.

And I’ll admit it, I even kind of got into the numbers by judges Mary Murphy (a Latin hip-shaker with Season 2’s Dmitry) and Nigel Lythgoe (tapping away with the Debbie Allen Dance Academy). You’ve got to hand it to them for being brave: They put their money where their (often hyper-critical) mouth is.

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One minor quibble, however. Anyone else think that Will got a bit too much air time considering he wasn’t in the Top 4?

I’m the first to admit that the boy was totally robbed when he was kicked off after being slated to win the whole she-bang, but hey, that’s the way America voted.

Yet he got a momentary spotlight solo during the intro, where the rest of the Top 20 danced with others, and Cat allowed him to jabber on about his wonderful experience on the show while dismissing the rest of the performers. Anyone else think the show was trying to tell us something?

So that’s it until next summer, folks! Unless you’re planning to check out the dancers on tour.

Here you go, FOX, I’ll give you a free plug: Go to www.fox.com/dance to find a show near you.

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, August 7th, 2008 at 10:31 pm |
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Who will win on ‘Dance’ tonight?

August
7

It was the last “So You Think You Can Dance” performance show last night, and the Final Four showed everyone exactly why they’ve made it to the finale.

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Especially Twitch and Joshua, because if you believe the rumor mill, the boys were the two dancers rushed to the hospital over the weekend for dehydration.

The only references the show made to the incident were vague, like Nigel’s comment after the quartet’s last Braveheart-inspired Mia Michaels routine. He told the group that he knows everyone’s exhausted, but tough noogies, no one in an audience cares about that when they’re watching a show.

Whatever. If Twitch and Joshua were indeed the ones who collapsed, I’d say they deserve a little sympathy after watching their insanely taxing Russian typytych, which was without question the best routine of the night.

A dance battle played out to the Nutcracker Suite?!? Total genius. And like guest judge Mandy Moore pointed out, those dudes needed the stamina of stallions to pull that off.

That said, the number also served to highlight every single one of Joshua’s strengths. Those leaps! Those flips! That now brace-free smile!

If this dance battle was supposed to parallel the larger competition, I’d say Josh—not Twitch—will be the winner tonight. The judges seemed to be steering voters that way, too, with Nigel calling Joshua and Katee “two of the most brilliant dancers ever on this show.”

So why don’t I think Katee will win?

Don’t get me wrong, she’s got a shot—and if she’s crowned America’s Favorite Dancer, I wouldn’t be surprised. Her technique is spectacular, and she’s never gotten a bad review from the judges.

But I suspect that Katee may fall prey to the same syndrome that afflicted Chelsie Hightower last week: She’s just too consistently good, so the fact that she’s made it this far hasn’t surprised anyone.

It’ll be a close call, but I’ll wager that the audience, much like Nigel & Co., are loving Joshua’s “untrained” status just a tiny bit more. That gives him a strange but powerful advantage: He can be an underdog at the same time he’s a fan favorite.

Plus, who wouldn’t love that a hip-hopper would take the title for the first time?

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, August 7th, 2008 at 9:21 am |
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‘Dance’ dehydration drama!

August
6

The four “So You Think You Can Dance” finalists got an unexpected day off on Sunday, after two of the contestants were sent to the hospital for dehydration.

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Judge Mary Murphy told People magazine that the two unnamed dancers collapsed during rehearsals on Saturday, and they were rushed by ambulance to nearby Cedars Sinai Hospital.

Murphy said that the other two (presumably healthy) dancers weren’t allowed to practice on Sunday, so the playing field would hopefully be level for tonight’s final performance show.

But will it?

FOX refused to give the identities of the ill dancers, so it’ll be interesting to see if the show acknowledges the situation tonight.

Previously, we’d been told about Comfort’s dislocated shoulder—but that was way back in the first week of the competition. The stakes are much higher now.

My guess is that lips will be sealed this time, because the producers won’t want to be accused of messing with the winning results: Viewers might give the sick dancers sympathy votes.

We’ll see what happens when the big event kicks off tonight at 8—and the winner is crowned on Thursday. Stay tuned!

(Photo courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Wednesday, August 6th, 2008 at 1:15 pm |
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Do you STILL think you can dance? Try out next season!

August
5

“So You Think You Can Dance” is not in danger of cancellation, with FOX having sent the show to safety by renewing it for a fifth season.

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The show will shake its money maker again next summer, which is no real surprise since “Dance” ranks among the Top 5 with adults 18 to 49.

execprod_nigellythgoe0064abrfs.jpg In fact, the reality series has become such a big deal, head “jidge” Nigel Lythgoe announced he’s stepping down as executive producer of his other hit: a little something called “American Idol.”

He’ll be devoting his time to nurturing versions of “Dance” in other countries, as well as to a new venture with fellow co- creator, Simon Fuller.

For now, however, he’s counting down to tomorrow’s two-hour performance finale. It’s the dance battle to end all dance battles, with Twitch Boss, Katee Shean, Courtney Galiano and Joshua Allen (pictured above) fighting for the title of America’s Favorite Dancer.

The winner will be announced Thursday night.

Go Twitch, go Twitch, go Katee, go Katee, go Courtney, go Courtney, go Joshua, go Joshua, go, go, go…

(So sue me, I haven’t picked a favorite yet.)

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Tuesday, August 5th, 2008 at 9:39 am |
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Final four move to ‘Dance’ finale

August
1

And then there were four.So did America get it right?

As you probably know by now—and if you don’t, stop reading now!—Katee, Joshua, Courtney and Twitch are all headed for next week’s showdown to win the “favorite dancer” title.

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Chelsie and Mark—sniffle—are headed home. (And for the national tour, of course! Go to www.fox.com/dance to buy tickets this weekend for a show at a town near you.)

Were the results a surprise? Well, yes and no. This contest has been so topsy-turvy in the last few weeks that any of the Top 6 could have moved on.

But wisely, Katee and Joshua were whisked right to safety—and even though Cat emphasized that didn’t necessarily mean they got the most votes, we all know she’s lying. These partners are by far the most popular dancers right now, and they’re very likely to be the ones battling it out at the very end of the finale.

Yet, could dark horse Courtney be a threat? I don’t think even she believed she would make it this far, since she’d been in danger a few times. She improved by leaps and bounds as the competition progressed, however, and the fans noticed and rallied big time.

elimination_d2y8455.jpg How else could she have bested the teachers’ pet, Chelsie, who could do no wrong?

Seriously, when you think about it, how did Courtney beat out Chelsie, who, along with Katee, rarely received a negative comment from the judges? Now that I’m thinking about it, had Chelsie ever had to dance for her life?

Well, my guess is that Chelsie simply didn’t grow as much as Courtney did. Weird as it may sound, Chelsie being great ALL THE TIME may have been her undoing. Then again, Katee has been consistently great, too, and that certainly didn’t hurt her any. So what do I know? Maybe Katee’s hometown of San Jose was just majorly blasting the phone lines.

As for Mark and Twitch? Charisma seemed to trump quirky in this case, with a gracious Mark seeming genuinely happy for Twitch’s victory.

Nigel said that each one of the finalists polled over a million votes, but if I had to make a wager, it would be that Twitch and Mark were THISCLOSE.

And not to jump on the Mark bandwagon at this late date, but I was really charmed by his farewell speech. He hinted that he’d always felt out of place and unusual, so he was grateful that the audience liked his odd moves and kept him in the competition this long. Hooray, nonconformity!

Anyway, other than a few random tidbits—Joshua got his braces off! Six-year-old Lil’ Demon can break like the big boys!—that’s all the news from the dance floor. Because I’m not even going to get into the Lady Gaga performance, except to say, “What the hell was that?!?”

So tune in to the very last performance show next Wednesday, and find out Thursday who’ll be crowned the champion and walk away with the $250,000 prize—and a role in guest judge Adam Shankman’s new movie!

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, August 1st, 2008 at 8:51 am |
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A ‘Dance’ free-for-all

July
31

Two weeks ago, if you’d asked me if Mark and Courtney had any shot of making the Final Four, I’d have said your dance shoes were laced too tight.

top6_d2y8324.jpg But now, between last week’s shocking elimination of the amazing Will Wingfield and last night’s incredible performances, I’m surprised to say that anything could happen in this competition.

Right now, I can’t even begin to handicap this bloody thing. America, you’ve thrown me for a loop!

Twitch could be the guy going home tonight, since he was in the Bottom 2 last week and seems to be relying on his personality as much as his technique. Then again, voters upset by his recent close call could rally behind him.

And once upon a time, I’d have thought Courtney would be outta here (and she still might be, given her presence in the danger zone last week).

But she’s got a dark horse thing going on right now, and the fact that she and Mark delivered what I thought was one of the best routines of the season—that wild French burlesque number by my new favorite choreographer Sonya—could work in her favor.

courtnymarkjazz_u1h2144.jpg Don’t get me wrong, Chelsie and Katee have a strong cult behind them and they’ve been more consistently spectacular than Courtney throughout the season.

Still—and it seems weird to say this—their steady display of talent may not be enough to win. It’s unbelievable that I’m now kind of bored by yet another hot, swivel-hipped Latin number by Chelsie.

At the moment, I’m more wowed by someone like Joshua.

Like Courtney, he’s had a great arc on the show, improving every week, never losing his charm and nailing pretty much everything they throw his way.

Which is pretty spectacular, since—as the judges kept reminding themselves and the rest of us—Joshua’s had no classical training. (Which I suspect isn’t 100% accurate, but whatever.)

Take a look at his solo.

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, July 31st, 2008 at 9:11 am |
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Shocker ‘Dance’ elimination!

July
25

OK, I was going to be all calm and professional about this, but …

America, have you gone stark raving MAD?!?

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WILL eliminated? TWITCH in danger? MARK safe?

Are you INSANE?!?

Fine, you got one right: Comfort—the dancer who’s completely overstayed her welcome—got the hook. And Courtney’s fabulous, but she’s been in danger a few times now, so it wasn’t a surprise to see her dancing a solo.

But WILL?!? Uh, the guy who the judges—and TVGuide.com readers—pegged as the one to possibly win the whole gosh-darn competition?

This is beyond wrong. I mean, I’m all for a shake-up, believe me, but not at the expense of cutting one of the show’s biggest talents. Mia called him “genius,” for cripe’s sake!

Even MARK couldn’t believe he wasn’t going home, dizzily repeating “What? What?” as Cat sent him offstage to safety.

Not that Joshua and Mark are bad dancers, mind you. Not at all. But at this stage in the contest, someone’s got to go, and it’s just the person who isn’t quite as good as the others.

And sorry, boys, neither of you are Will Wingfield—or even Twitch Boss for that matter.

So what the heck happened?

Nigel tried to explain how Will and Twitch, who he called the show’s best male dancers, wound up in the Bottom 2. His theory: Maybe they were too good, and fans figured they didn’t need to call and vote.

Whatever the reason, it’s a sad, sad day for Season 4. You can debate the overall winners of previous “Dance” seasons—Benji vs. Travis, Sabra vs. Danny—but I honestly can’t remember another season where I didn’t think voters got the final few contestants right.

Sure, as Cat Deeley keeps reminding us, the show’s searching for America’s FAVORITE dancer.

But surely, that should mean that the best one should at least make it to the finale, right?

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, July 25th, 2008 at 9:19 am |
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Top 8 perform on ‘Dance’

July
24

Last night, Mary Murphy kept Joshua and Chelsie on board the Hot Tamale Train.

But I’m guessing those two need to jump off now, if only because the show’s little locomotive needs to chug into the “Dance” station to bring two more contestants home.

And unless America has jumped on the Crazy Train, those two will be Mark and Comfort.

In my view, last night’s show pretty much confirmed three of the Final Four dancers: Will, Katee and Twitch. The last slot will probably go Chelsie. (Unless I’m mistaken, and the show lifts its weekly “one guy, one girl” elimination rule next week. If so, she’ll fight it out with Joshua.)

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Will and Katee are, inarguably, the most technical dancers on the show. But can they match Twitch in charisma? Hard to say. But one thing is definite: Those three brought the best performances of the night.

First off, Nigel nailed it when he said Twitch and Katee delivered one of the most entertaining routines EVER on the show with their Mia Michaels contemporary number.

Just earlier this week, I was noting that this season hasn’t brought too many memorable moments so far, especially when compared with the Emmy nominated ones from last season. I stand corrected.

Because that kick-butt number totally rocked, from Katee’s Amy Winehouse-inspired beehive and eyeliner to Twitch’s laid-back sneer! I’d have liked Katee to get a bit more psycho ex-girlfriend, but other than that, these two were fan-freakin’-tastic.

How could you not love that one move, where Katee was hanging onto the door when Twitch slammed it? Brilliant. And that hot smooch at the beginning? Yeah, baby, yeah!

(And yes, Nigel, I would like to know what goes through Mia Michaels’ head. In fact, I’d like to take Mia and Mary Murphy out for a martini or five one night and see what flies out of their mouths. I’m guessing it would be the best night ever.)

As for Will, I was less in love with his routines with Courtney than the judges were. Their samba was fine, but that’s all, and frankly, I was expecting the judges to slam their slow hip-hop as being emotionless.

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Maybe it just didn’t translate for the at-home audience, but I got nothing out of what was supposed to be an emotional number.

Looking at those pictures of her dead lover, Courtney could have been reminiscing about a fun night at the sorority house for all I knew: “You guys! Remember when Tiffany got so wasted, she barfed in Lauren’s hair and we couldn’t get it out? Good times…” She certainly wasn’t making me tear up over someone who’s passed away.

No, it was his solo where Will really stood out. Yes, some might have called it a schlocky James Brown impersonation, but it was still damn fun!

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, July 24th, 2008 at 10:29 am |
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Are you happy to see Comfort back on ‘Dance?’

July
21

Man, I take one lousy week off and it has to be the one with the most action so far this season on “So You Think You Can Dance.” Darn you, Nigel Lithgoe, darn you!!!

To summarize (with enthusiasm):

Jessica suffers an injury and is out of the race!

comfortfedoke_1_4269_lyf.jpg She’s replaced by Comfort!

Comfort actually makes it through to next week, and—SHOCKER!—Kherington gets sent home instead. (Guess America just liked the Twitch part of Twitchington.)

Nigel choreographs a routine all by himself! (And two assistants.)

The show nabs FOUR Emmy nods! (Keep reading for more details on that one.)

Oh yeah, and Gev was eliminated, too. Nothing against the guy, but everyone on the planet knew it was either him or Mark saying sayonara. And Mark is likely packing his dance shoes as we speak.

But here’s the big question: Is anyone actually pleased to see Comfort back on the stage? I guess the rest of America is, but I have to admit that I’m not.

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Monday, July 21st, 2008 at 11:45 am |
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Top 10 named on ‘Dance’

July
11

So last night’s Bottom 3 couples ended up as: Comfort and Thayne; Will and Jessica; and Twitch and Kherington.

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But we didn’t really need an official announcement to know who was outta there, right? Bye-bye, Comfort and Thayne.

Maybe it was his constant grin or horrible sideburns that annoyed me, but Thayne never struck me as anything special—despite getting major love from the judges. Mia Michaels, in particular.

But once it came down to Thayne, Will and Twitch? Honey, please.

That was probably the easiest decision Nigel & Co. have made all season, despite all that pretend agony.

Personally, I thought Comfort was the real disappointment of last night’s two dismissed dancers. There’s a star in her just trying to break out, but it never got loose. Not during the competitive routines anyway: The only times she’s ripped up the joint lately is during Thursday’s opening numbers. At this stage in the game, though, we couldn’t wait for magic to happen anymore.

But you know who I REALLY felt sorry for last night? Jessica.

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I don’t even like her much, but man, girlfriend just can’t catch a break from those mean ol’ judges. When Nigel was dismissing Thayne, he said that the judges were unanimous in their decision. Then he added that they would rather have cut two girls than him.

In other words, if the rules had allowed it, Comfort and Jessica would have been eliminated.

Jeez, couldn’t they have given the poor girl 3o seconds to enjoy the fact that she made the Top 10? And they keep complaining that one of Jessica’s problems is confidence. Well, telling her that she stinks every five minutes probably isn’t a boost to her self-esteem.

It’ll be interesting to see what happens to her next week, when all the partners are split up. Maybe she’ll shine without suffering that constant comparison to Wonder Boy Will. Or she could fall flat on her face without him to prop her up.

Either way, now’s when the game starts getting really, really good. There hasn’t been much suspense in the eliminations yet, but as Nigel pointed out last night: No one is safe now.

I’m on vacation next week—YAY!—so I won’t be around to ruminate on the performances. But I’ll be back and ready to rhumba the week after that.

Dance on, team!!

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, July 11th, 2008 at 8:27 am |
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Top 12 battle it out to make the ‘Dance’ tour

July
10

Last night’s performance show was a pivotal episode of “Dance” this season.

After tonight’s contestants are booted, we’ll have our Top 10, the dancers who get to go on the national tour, which kicks off this fall.

Not to mention that all bets are off after this week, because the current partners will be split up and the dancers will be relying more on their own individual charisma and talent.

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Which is a good thing for dancers like Comfort, who’s been pretty lazy lately, but she’s also been saddled with the worst guys in the bunch week after week. It’s a bad thing for gals like Jessica, who—as Mia Michaels so bluntly pointed out last night—has been carried by her partner, Will, since the start.

Of course, that’s if Comfort and Jessica actually make it to next week—and I’ll bet one of them says bye-bye tonight. And unless one of the other boys kicks Nigel in the head during the solos, we all know Thayne is going home, too.

Which means, obviously, that my guess is that Comfort and Thayne, plus Jessica and Will, will be in the Bottom 3 couples tonight.

As for the other two in danger? Anything goes at this point, who—despite the harsh criticism—are pretty amazing. And much will depend on the popularity of the couple—or the hatred of any individual in a pair.

If you go by the judges’ comments, every couple except Chelsie and Mark and Courtney and Gev gave uneven performances. Then again, C & G have been in the Bottom 3 before—so does America just not love ‘em enough?

What do you think, fans? Let’s review the guys and girls to get our brains pumping…

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, July 10th, 2008 at 10:03 am |
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Down to Top 12 on ‘Dance’

July
3

Okay, I’ll admit it—it’s the holiday weekend and I’m feeling lazy.

So I’ll be brief: Kourtni and Matt were the ones sent packing tonight.

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Not shocking, right? Kourtni herself didn’t even seem surprised to go, even if she did show more oomph than ever in her solo.

Let’s face it: This couple’s been on thin ice for weeks now.

As for the other two girls in the Bottom 3, Comfort’s on borrowed time. She didn’t even get Nigel’s vote tonight, and he was once one of her big fans. Courtney’s sweet, lovely and talented—and was only in danger because someone else had to be. Still, it’s likely she doesn’t have more than another week or two left in her, either.

And the guys? It was down to Matt and Thayne, and I’ll bet Matt was dismissed more on the basis of his dismal pairing with Kourtni than tonight’s solo. (Which means that Thayne should consider his days numbered.)

Anyway, that’s the 30-second round-up, folks! Tune in next week when we’re down to the Dirty Dozen … WHOO HOO!

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, July 3rd, 2008 at 10:08 pm |
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It’s double the fun when ‘Dance’ couples perform twice!

July
3

At the risk of sounding as loopy as Mary Murphy, someone needs to turn up the air conditioning on that “Dance” stage because last night’s show was hot, hot, HOT!!!

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Will and Twitch, shirtless! (Man, who knew these two were so ripped?!?)

Kherington stomping around in thigh-high boots!

kheringtontwitchpasodoble_u1h6633.jpg Heck, Twitchington rolling around on a bed covered in rose petals!

Chelsie and Mark blowing kisses!

Man, the seven remaining couples brought it big time last night, proving that it’s getting harder and harder to say which ones are going all the way to the finals.

As for who’ll be in danger of going home tonight? It shows how great these dancers  are when I can only say one couple is a sure bet for solos: Kourtni and Matt.

As for the other two possibilities, I’d guess Comfort, Thayne, Courtney and Gev will be dancing for their lives. Anything goes at this point, though, and things will start getting really interesting when the show starts to break up partners—and dancers start to perform more on their own.

That said, let’s do the usual Wednesday night breakdown, shall we?

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, July 3rd, 2008 at 9:26 am |
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‘Dance’ says bye-bye to one more guy, one girl

June
27

Well, it went down exactly as we thought it would, didn’t it, America?

Chelsea Traille is the gal going home, and Chris Jarosz is saying see ya, too.

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After six solos that, quite frankly, reeked of desperation—the judges must have scared the bejeezus into them last week about the seriousness of “dancing for your life”—the judges quickly dumped Chelsea.

She probably wasn’t surprised. It was her time to go, since her performances haven’t improved much, no matter what the genre.

Last night also showed how quickly this contest is narrowing. Because unless some major upset or injury happens, I’m guessing the next girls to be booted will be in the order they were chosen for the Bottom 3 last night—Comfort, then Kourtni.

As for Chris, did anyone truly think he wasn’t leaving?

Nigel said what we were all thinking: Matt, you’re brilliant—go sit down. We all know it’s down to Chris and Thayne.

Even I’ve got to admit Thayne gave it his all in his solo. Chris was fine, and that’s sort of the point. He’s just fine. Vanilla-bean Boy just couldn’t manage to distinguish himself; he didn’t even seem to know how to try. So he was sent packing.

His elimination also marked the first time any of the couples have been split up, which means that Comfort will partner with Thayne next week. Now, Comfort and Chris were a mismatch from the start, and I suspect that the judges have kept her around because they see a lot of potential in her with a different guy.

But Thayne? That’s not exactly the best connection, either, and when Nigel announced that pairing, I’ll bet Comfort sighed and said, “Oh well, it was nice while it lasted….”

final14_d2y2972.jpg Anyway, now that we’re down to the Top 14, do you think it’s becoming more apparent who’ll be the Final Four?

I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if this ended up being an all-guy, or, at least an almost all-guy, season finale.

Because the way this competition is going, it’ll take a train wreck—of the Hot Tamale Train, perhaps?—to stop the momentum of Will, Joshua and Twitch…

(Photos courtesy of FOX)

Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, June 27th, 2008 at 7:58 am |
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‘Dance’ finalists tighten the pack

June
26

Well, Mary Murphy, can you predict who’ll get kicked off the show now?

Our favorite overexcited, bedazzled judge—who, as guest judge Adam Shankman put it, looked like a “pretty disco ball”—told us at the top of last night’s show that this season’s dancers were all so good that it’s hard to say who’ll get the boot each week.

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But after watching those performances—which, for the most part, were pretty darn good—I’ll bet Mary now agrees with Nigel: Chelsea and Thayne need to prepare their solos for tonight.

And I think they should pack their suitcases, too.

What other couples should be in the Bottom 3 tonight? Comfort and Chris, for sure.

They spoiled what should have been a totally original, kick-butt number. The performance was memorable not because of their moves, but because of the unique choreography and song choice. (African jazz set to Marilyn Manson’s “Beautiful People?” Freakin’ brilliant, Tyce DiOrio!)

As for the last couple in danger?

My money’s on Kourtni and Matt. They actually did a really good job with their “comic book” characters, but were they good enough?

I’ll say that the last couple will be these two, or Jessica and Will—but the latter couple got the more popular disco genre. Not to mention Will’s forming enough of a fan base that he’ll likely pull them through another week.

Who were the best of the night? To me, the race was neck-and-neck between the final two couples: Chelsie and Mark and Katee and Joshua—but I’ll give the edge to Chelsie and Mark.

That said, let’s break it down as usual—couple by couple.

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Thursday, June 26th, 2008 at 10:29 am |
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‘Dance’ boots two more finalists

June
20

Just like last week, “So You Think You Can Dance” dumped another couple, even though they had to dance for their lives separately.

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But unlike last week, America got the Bottom Three couples right—and the judges sent home the wrong two.

I actually can’t believe I’m defending the elimination of Susie and Marquis, two finalists who I never thought were going to get very far in this contest anyway. There are just too many more personable, exciting dancers (Joshua, Will, Twitch, Kherington) whipping around on that stage.

Still, when you had to choose from the six who were in danger, combined with their individual performances last night, Susie and Marquis deserved to stick around for at least another week.

So let’s start with the three couples who got the fewest votes, all of whom I said were the ones who should be battling it out for survival:

• Chelsea and Thayne

• Marquis and Susie

• Chris and Comfort

All three couples definitely had lackluster performances, so it was great to see the shining stars from Wednesday move on easily to next week. (But what about that moment where we all thought Kourtni and Matt or Jessica and Will were in the Bottom 3? Except they were safe! For shame, you big meanie, Cat Deeley!)

One thing I thought was interesting about the show’s recap of the couples’ performances was how the judges’ comments about Chris and Comfort were carefully edited to focus only on Chris. Yes, they busted big-time on Chris—and rightly so—but if I recall correctly, they also gave Comfort a couple of well-deserved jabs for not hitting the number hard enough.

But do I think Comfort should have been the girl to go? Nope. That should have been Chelsea, hands down.

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Posted by Heather Salerno on Friday, June 20th, 2008 at 9:28 am |
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