Hello PMC fans- this is Heather AKA @HeatherRecently on Twitter (remember me?) welcoming you all back to the recap marathon that is SYTYCD! Can you believe it’s been a year since our TVs have bestowed upon us the joy of Lady Gaga’s flying footwear, Lil C’s lexicon, and Cat Deeley’s cavalcade of costumes? With the auditions and Vegas’ hell week behind us (so long, exorcist man; thanks for coming, alien spaceship girl; back to the studio, dancers whose 15 minutes of fame were reduced to a half-second clip in a brief montage), it’s time to meet this season’s competitors.
Cat, who is herself stunning, struts out in a dress that appears to be inspired by the vomit & glitter-covered floor of a gay bar. Resident judges Mary “I Hope The Hot Tamale Train Is Hauling A Shipment Of Vicodin” Murphy and Nigel “Britain’s Age Of Consent is 16” Lythgoe are joined by actress Zooey Deschanel, but only barely. Zooey is disappointingly bland throughout the show and brings none of the quirk and adorkability she is known for.
We are introduced to the first 4 contemporary dancers via Tyce’s lovely but forgettable choreography. The judges decide not to choose between their two standout female ballroom dancers, so a flirty fun salsa three-way comes out next. Similarly, all three ballet dancers (including a pointe dancer, something we rarely see on the show) were put through to the top 20 and showcased in a powerful piece. Resident twisted bizartist (a word I just made up) Sonya Tayeh is the perfect choreographer for the pair of jazz girls, minus a temporarily ill belly dancer/bacon aficionado who also made the cut. A contemporary hodgepodge of four (including “silent movie” girl and the Ryan Gosling lookalike) perform, and the variety pack of a kung fu artist, a stepper, & a hip hopper/”animator” round out the top 20 in a brilliantly creative baseball themed dance by Christopher Scott.
The show isn’t over yet. The top 10 (well, 9) girls are breathlessly stunning in a Travis Wall dance that will easily join his already impressive list of career highlights. It’s as if Degas, Lars von Trier, and Maya Angelou combined forces, à la the Care Bear Stare, and birthed a pulsating mass of kinetic beauty. Cat summed it up perfectly: ethereal. The boys respond wearing… oversized maternity pants? in a “fierce” performance choreographed by Sonya. She compares the dancers to wolves, but the whole thing has more bark than bite. Then everyone takes the stage for a Mia Michaels routine that is evocative of both Michael Jackson and Men In Black III- in theaters now! There are some interesting moments, but it isn’t her greatest work. The camera cuts to a shot of Mia in the audience where she is almost unrecognizable, looking more like a Diane Keaton stand-in than her usual effervescent and slightly androgynous self. What’s going on with you, girl?
That wraps up this season’s first live show! Who do you think will go all the way, and who will get steamrolled by the Viennese Waltz or dropped like it’s hot in a hip hop routine? Share your thoughts in the comments below, and stay tuned for the announcement of an exciting SYTYCD contest from Pop My Culture!