So we’re already to the episodes where the couples perform two dances. With that in mind, I’ll get straight to the point.
- Melissa and Ade
- Dance #1 – Disco (Doriana Sanchez) – “Move On Up” by Destination – I was bummed when I heard the show was opening with disco, and that this was the style my favorite couple had been stuck with. Can’t complain much, though, since up until this point they have had great luck with their dance selections. Then again, there is more than luck to their success so far. They have great chemistry and talent! Although Melissa started off this performance looking a little uncomfortable, and ended by falling down, everything else about the routine was fantastic! They were workin’ it, and they had me smiling the whole time. They were crazy strong with two particular moves: Melissa’s upside down splits while Ade held her up in the air, and Melissa’s horizontal spinning while Ade held on to her. This was probably my favorite disco routine ever on the show. On a side note, everyone has talked about how stunning Kayla is, but I think that Melissa is beautiful, with her curly locks, her long legs, and her genuine smile. I love both her and Ade. Tyce summed up the judges thoughts with this phrase: “That was friggin’ great.”
- Dance #2: Waltz (Ron Montez) – “You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman” by Mary J. Blige – Oh no! It’s already time for the couples to be split up and given new partners?! Well, I enjoyed my favorite couple’s last dance together – this beautiful, flowing, romantic waltz. I couldn’t believe how high Ade lifted Melissa up toward the end! And he made all the lifts and turns look easy. This wasn’t one of their most memorable performances, but like all the rest, it was still impressive. Mary compared Melissa to “a fine wine… peaking at the right time.”
- Kayla and Kupono
- Dance #1 – Contemporary (Mia Michaels) – “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles – Well, it looks like all the Kupono non-fans will have to put up with him for another week. He and Kayla snagged the coveted Mia for their first dance this week, which will most likely translate to lots of votes. I’m not always an automatic fan of Mia’s work. (I especially didn’t like Neil and Lacey’s famous flowers in heaven routine.) In this dance, Kupono is the addiction that Kayla is trying to get rid of. And in Kupono’s defense, I’d imagine it was difficult for him to portray addiction in this performance, when his family experienced the hardship and destruction that it leads to. Their performance did, indeed, convey a lot of emotion, and they danced it very well. Mia did a nice job of creating a powerful interpretation of the grip of addiction. Nigel finally had a critical word for Kayla, stating that he’d like to see more of her face and less of her hair. She does sling her hair around a lot. Tyce said, “The best dancers are the best actors” and that he felt like he “had an experience.” I agree with that. They did a nice job of creating a moment for the audience.
- Dance #2: Broadway (Joey Dowling) – “The Dance at the Gym” from West Side Story – Something about two kids running into each other on a rooftop and falling in love? I couldn’t understand what they were saying in the intro. I was kind of bored. Remember a few weeks ago when Max and Kayla danced that pop jazz routine, and I said that the choreography made Max seem very feminine (and he was supposed to be playing a devious prince type!)? Well, I had a similar reaction here to Kupono. His dancing was very soft, rather than the tough, charismatic character I think he was supposed to play. And Kayla didn’t do much better. She kind of pranced around the stage. The judges were critical of the couple’s lack of the emotional element.
- Jason and Caitlin
- Dance #1: Foxtrot (Tony Meredith) – “Minnie the Moocher” by Big Bad Voodoo Daddie – This is an American gangster style foxtrot. It was okay. Actually, it was my favorite Caitlin performance of the season, and it was nice to see her looking like herself for once. Unfortunately, there was a missing link between her and Jason that led to some awkwardness. I agree with Nigel that this was Caitlin’s style, but I don’t think that the foxtrot will be memorable enough to keep them out of the bottom couples this week.
- Dance #2: Lyrical Jazz (Mandy Moore) – “Show Me Heaven ” by Maria McKee – Mandy plans to bring out their contemporary strengths. I hope so! The verdict: that was really nice! I’ve never been more impressed by Jason and Caitlin. Nice song, nice wardrobe (when in doubt, it never hurts to leave the guy shirtless, right?), and interesting movement. I wish they had given us some hints about what the story was, but even without that, I felt drawn to their performance. Nigel doesn’t see much chemistry between the two, and Mary didn’t see any magic. I disagree with them. I thought Jason and Caitlin were very in tune with each other.
- Jeanine and Phillip
- Dance #1: Russian Folk – “Kalinka” by Barynya – This dance represents a playful competition between a man and a woman. I’m not sure what to say about this one. They looked kind of silly in their traditional Russian garb, and the choreography didn’t look as technically difficult as most of the other styles on the show. It came across as cartoonish to me, until their leg work and spinning at the end. Nigel said it needed “an awful lot of vodka to go along with it.” I tend to agree.
- Dance #2: The Jive (Tony and Melanie) – “Stuff Like That There” by Bette Midler – Phillip is a sailor who just returned home, and Jeanine is teasing him. I don’t like Phillip’s exaggerated facial expressions, but I love Jeanine’s saucy personality and fun energy on stage. This is one of the more fun Jives I’ve seen on the show. Nigel thought this was the best Phillip has performed out of his style. And he called Jeanine “one of our best top ten dancers.” All in all, the judges were much crazier about this performance than I was.
- Evan and Randi
- Dance #1: Hip Hop (Tabitha and Napoleon) – “Halo” by Beyonce – So this routine is about a couple who has just found out that they are going to have a baby. Randi and Evan had to work off of imagination, since they don’t have any first hand experience in this area. They were sweet together playing these characters. This dance is demonstrative of Tabitha and Napoleon’s ability to fill a hip hop routine with emotion. Nigel said that Tabitha and Napoleon didn’t ask them to be urban, they just let them be them, with a hip hop feel. I liked it, but I didn’t love it. Tyce told Evan he needs to “find more” but praised Randi for doing great.
- Dance #2: Samba (Pasha and Anya!) – “Ritmo Da Bom Bom” by Jubaba – Oh my goodness! I am so excited to see Pasha and Anya on the show, and working together to choreograph this routine!!! I absolutely love Pasha. He is one of my all-time favorite contestants on the show! I guess I should get back to this season’s contestants, though, so I’ll stop my gushing. Yikes! Not sure how I feel about all that leopard print. Anya must have picked out their costumes (I never really cared for her taste in wardrobe). And why do all of their dances have Evan staring at Randi’s butt? I’m seeing a pattern here. Nigel: “Evan, do I look on you as a hot samba king? No I don’t.” I agree. I thought Randi was much more suited for the style than he was. Um, so now can Pasha and Anya get on stage and do their routine real justice? (Yeah, I’m not going to be able to move past the Pasha cameo. Too excited about it!)
- Brandon and Janette
- Dance #1: Argentine Tango (Leonardo and Miriam) – “Libertango” from Forever Tango – I wouldn’t say that there was a lot of heat between them, but Janette did a fantastic job with all the leg work and looked great, and Brandon was a great partner. Nigel and the other judges gave them a standing ovation! And Nigel said it was as close to ballroom perfection as has ever been on the show. I had to go back and watch again after all the praise the judges gave. I liked it better the second time, and noticed Brandon’s complete focus on Janette, reminiscent of his intense stage presence in his first audition solo. I still think that I’ve seen couples dance the tango with more chemistry, but they were definitely technically excellent.
- Dance #2: Jazz (Wade Robson) – “Ruby Blue” by Roisin Murphy – It’s nice to see Wade back on the show. This routine is about two thieves, one calculated and one crazy. I loved it! In fact, I love this couple more and more every week. This performance gave Janette a chance to be her crazy self, and Brandon a chance to show that he does have a fun, quirky personality. Nigel said that there’s nothing they can throw at them that they can’t do brilliantly. I agree. I think they had the best night, considering that both of their performances were outstanding. Thanks is due to Wade Robson for creating a unique routine for them to close out the night.
My Favorite Performances of the Night:
- Brandon and Janette’s jazz
- Caitlin and Jason’s lyrical jazz
- Kayla and Kupono’s contemporary
Most Disappointing Performances:
- Kayla and Kupono’s Broadway
- Jeanine and Phillip’s Russian folk
- Evan and Randi’s Samba
Predicting the Bottom Three Couples: (Will there still be three couples in danger? I can’t remember when they stop doing the results show that way)
- Randi and Evan
- Phillip and Jeanine
- Kayla and Kupono
If I had my pick, I’d send Kupono and Kayla (or Caitlin if she is in the bottom three) home this week, but it’s hard to know who the judges will pick.