Wednesday, August 10, 2011

SYTYCD Season 8: Top 4 Perform

Kenny Ortega and Katie Holmes join our judges tonight and it's the LAST performance episode of the season. I thought America got it right this season and am so happy with the Top 4. I'd be happy with any of them winning tomorrow night.

Melanie and Marko
Doriann Sanchez Disco
I Feel Love (12" Version) by Donna Summer
Well, the lighting and Melanie's faces were the best part of that painful routine. There's a reason this is one of the "dances of death." Katie loved their facial expressions and really that was the best part of the routine. Mary pointed out how their lifts, coming in and out, were rough and not smooth transitions. Nigel thought it was a bit of a struggle and they were uncomfortable in the style.

Sasha and All-Star Mark
Sonya Tayeh Jazz
Raise Your Weapon by DeadMau5
LOVED it! This is Sonya at her best, with that dark twisted storyline and these two quirky dancers fit perfectly within her style. Katie thought she was so strong and so powerful, with that walk and pose at the end being so victorious. Mary gave out her signature shriek and called her a star.

Tadd and All-Star Joshua
Lil C Krumping/Hip Hop
Hustle Hard by Ace Hood
They were so in sync the whole time, that was pretty impressive. Mary thought his sweetie pie factor could have been a problem, but he was able to be "hard" and keep up with Joshua. Nigel thought he did the hard work on his knees was outstanding. I thought the dancing was fantastic, but the choreography left me wanting more. Nearly every previous routine from Tadd took advantage of his strength and b-boy skills, and I just expected there to be a moment like that in the routine and then there just wasn't. Katie and Kenny loved those red shoes, partly because they highlighted how fast he is and how great that footwork was.

Melanie and All-Star Robert
Stacy Tooky Contemporary
Sacrifice by Sinaed O'Conner
Beautiful! Nigel loved the assisted lift as she did the jete, and it captured his heart. Kenny pointed out how strong the partners are on the show, and had one of the best praises saying basically that he would love to work with her in the DIRTY DANCING remake. Nigel had my favorite quote of the night with:
"Sasha just threw down the gauntlet and you just picked up and slapped her in the face with it!"

Marko and Sasha
Spencer Liff Broadway
Whatever Lola Wants by Ella Fitzgerald
That was a fantastic broadway routine! It took me a second to recognize Marko in the geeky, meek waiter role, but Sasha was definitely the star of the routine. Kenny loved the transformations of them both, while Katie loved how strong and beautiful Sasha is and is reminded of Sid Charise. I loved the flips and lifts, and these were definitely pulled off better than Marko's first routine, the Disco. Nigel didn't love it, and I totally disagree with him yet again. He thought Sasha makes a better warrior princess than a vampy women on the prowl. I feel like his dismissal might be a ploy to keep Melanie at the top, since she did get knocked down a peg or two thanks to that disco.

Melanie Solo
Song for Viola
While this was strong, her solo last week still stands heads and shoulders above.

Marko Solo
The Fear You Won't Fall by Joshua Radin
Another great solo, but the highlight of this was the emotions from his mom and dad being in the audience. So cute!

Sasha and Tadd
Mark Ballas Cha Cha
Raindrops by Basement Jaxx
I loved that little spank move in the very beginning! There was a missed hand grab, and Sasha was just too stiff and rigid throughout. Mary didn't think it worked - missed hand connections, chemistry, leg action, etc. There were a lot of big problems, and she thought Sasha fared better than Tadd. I disagree on that last point, I thought Sasha was the weaker link here. Nigel thought it was uncomfortable to watch and not good for either of them.

Marko and All-Star Lauren
Tessandra Chavez Contemporary
Shrik by Me'Shell Ndegeocello
Other than the song, I thought the dancing was fabulous. Mary pointed out that Marko is living greatness in every moment. She thought it was beautiful, with honest communication in the dance. Nigel felt tonight's dances have been a big disappointing (which I wholeheartedly agree with) and this dance finally brought him in to the finale competition. Kenny thought it was gorgeous choreography and just a gift to the show.

Tadd Solo
Mamma Knows Best by Jessie J

Tadd and Melanie
Ray Leaper Jazz (?)
Show me what you're working with by Sista Monica
Nigel loved that Melanie was in character for the entire routine, even before she started dancing. I'm sure all the girls in the audience loved Tadd's portion of the routine since he slowly lost his clothes. Kenny and Katie love that Melanie brings a theatricality to every number she's in. Mary thought that Melanie may have had the best strut done on the show.

Sasha Solo
Be Be Your Love by Rachael Yamagata

Melanie and Sasha
Stacy Tookey Contemporary
Heart Asks Pleaseure First by Ahn Trio
Kenny loved Stacy's work with these "two actresses who happen to dance." These two dancers are so strong and frankly I expected something explosive and while this was great, the whole storyline of the dance was how they are repressed, suppressed housewives. Yes it was beautiful, but ultimately disappointing, much like the rest of this finale.

Marko and Tadd
Chuck Maldinado Gumboot Stepping
B.O.B. by Outkast
Aw, poor poor Marko. Seriously, why did they bring in all these different choreographers and styles for the FINALE that they hadn't done at all before? While I'm sure they both did their best, it just doesn't seem fair to them to do this in the finale. Mary was the only one who loved it, Nigel even pointed out that he still thinks a girl will win tonight. Ouch. This was probably the worst finale performance I've seen on the show yet.

The finale's big mistake was bringing in choreographers and dance styles that hadn't appeared on this season yet. Poor Marko got stuck with Disco and Gumboot Stepping - how could he compare to Melanie when she got contemporary, jazz, and another contemporary routine to help offset the damage of that one Disco number. This season has been so unbelievably strong before this, that it makes the finale even more of a failure.

Oh well, the show must go on and tonight the winner of So You Think You Can Dance will be crowned! Here's my prediction:

4th: Marko - two dances of death puts him lower in my rankings than I thought after last week. He's a strong dancer but just had the worst luck tonight.
3rd: Tadd - he had a great night even with the poor routine picks. I stand by my opinion that Sasha was the weaker link in that Cha Cha, but I still think America will vote for Sasha more because of her strong dancing, unique style, and great personality.
2nd: Sasha - while she didn't have the Disco, I feel like this was Melanie's season to win and nothing short of an extreme performance either way was going to change that.
1st: Melanie - she's been the fan favorite from the first dance and has rarely faltered in choreography and never faltered in performance. Even during the Disco, she grinned her way through it so at least it looked like she was having fun in that style even though it wasn't that great technically.

Who do you think will win tomorrow?

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