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Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

Too Much Filler


Dmitry now has his third partner in Ashlee, he’s beginning to be thought of as toxic, and she’s worried they will get ballet, contemporary or lyrical. Sure enough, they get contemporary, choreographed by Brian. They know it will be difficult, as neither of them can even get on their toes. Brian creates a story out of the dance. Ashlee will be a doll in a toy shop, and Dmitry as a runaway ringleader from the circus, will use a magic wand to cast a spell and bring her to life. He wants it to be strong, powerful, and a little psychotic. Dmitry says that Brian “keeks your butt.”

Ashlee and Dmitry do their doll story contemporary dance to Dance, Dance by Fall Out Boy.
Her legs don’t seem to be straight enough as she dances, but that could be the style of this dance. Then again, it’s probably great choreography of Brian knowing they would struggle with it. Nigel says they already knew Dmitry was a magician as he made two of his partners disappear. Cue the rim shot. He continues, saying what’s great about this is that Brian realized he was working with two dancers that had never done contemporary before. He believes the story was so entertaining he never looked at the choreography. Mary says Brian did take us out to fantasy land, and what girl wouldn’t want to be taken there by Dmitry. Amen, Sister. She asks him to please not wear that outfit anymore. She’s a little out of control tonight. Dan believes Nigel and Mary are hyping them up, and doesn’t understand why, as he doesn’t believe they played their characters right. Nigel feels the critique is unfair, as it was Brian’s choreography and not their own. Dan keeps his stance, saying hitting things just right is one of Ashlee’s strengths, and she lost that here.

Musa and Natalie pull disco, choreographed by Doriana Sanchez out of a hat. She asks them several times if they have warmed up properly, and they say they even did finger warmups. Doriana says when you have someone as strong as Musa, you can push the envelope as far as the tricks. Yet, then again, they also show that strength and grace don’t always go hand in hand, as he can lift and hold her, but it’s not very graceful. Natalie says they have problems with their arms sweating, and once that starts, it’s hard to maintain that hold. Either way, Musa’s digging this as Natalie is such a daredevil with the tricks.

The classic disco song Hot Stuff by Donna Summer is the backdrop for Natalie and Musa’s disco. I just have to ask if these two could be any more sexy together. They don’t do some of the tricks they were practicing, yet the ones they do are still phenomenal. Nigel gives them credit for bravery on the lifts, and tells Musa everything he lacks in technique is made up with his partner. He also notes how Musa doesn’t count, but “feels” everything, so occasionally he’ll go off, but Natalie is always there to pull him in. Nigel specifically liked the airplane spin, as Natalie managed to go up even higher. Mary says they were looking for some hot stuff, and she thinks they found it. She feels the quickstep they did last week was crap, but they have managed to go from crap to caviar. Dan points out that if sex sells, then Natalie and Musa just made about a million dollars. What is most sexy about it, he believes, is that they don’t even realize it, or even try to be that way. It just is. A-M-E-N.

Donyelle and Benji are just always great personalities, no matter what. It’s like they make us believe they are just like us, and that we could do these dances as well. They pull Viennese Waltz from the hat, but keep calling it the Viet Namese Waltz. The choreographers are Michael Mead and Toni Redpath, and they feel that since Donyelle and Benji can’t even get the name of the dance straight, it’s a little alarming. They even crack that at some point they are looking like Viet Namese Karate dancers. One correction they try to make is for Benji to be more masculine. He says he’s going to be more passionate like Don Juan Marco, and tells Donyelle to just close her eyes and pretend he’s Dmitry.

With Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman by Bryan Adams, Donyelle and Benji bring their great personalities into it. He does a great lift with her, and brings that masculine feel into it that they wanted. Nigel wants to point out that Donyelle is working with a broken toe, but she says she doesn’t want to make excuses. Nigel also says he doesn’t care if they do this dance in Viet Nam or Vienna, as it was beautiful and bloody marvelous. Mary echoes this, saying they may not be able to say Viennese Waltz, but they can definitely say after tonight they can dance it. She saw that they had an amazing flow of movement across the stage. Mary starts leaning in to Dan waiting for his critique, and again she’s getting a little scary. He says he thinks dancing is about entertaining people, and it doesn’t matter if Benji and Donyelle are dancing, speaking to the camera, or just acting stupid, as they are the most entertaining couple.

And now pushed out of their comfort zone are Ivan and Allison, as they choose West Coast Swing, which just happens to be Benji’s strength. Ivan and Allison aren’t real happy about this, as they’ve already done the salsa and the tango. Ron Montez tells them the swing is a real American dance that people love to watch. Allison has no experience with this style, but Ivan says he did do it a long time ago with his mom, because she wanted to. Ron has to keep telling them to stop being so smiley and happy, as they should be “up”, but not that much. Maybe they are trying to duplicate a Benji type of thing. Ron even puts some body moves into this that imitate Ivan’s strength in hip hop and break dancing.

Doing their West Coast Swing to Don’t Happen No More by Pat Benatar, Allison and Benji are in all black and white, imitating my closet, and Allison has on these really funky pants. I can only think as I watch this how much he has improved. Nigel thinks Allison was fantastic and also notices Ivan’s confidence growing, and wonders if it has to do with his father’s phone call from last week. Mary agrees he’s definitely getting better every week. As for Allison, Mary thinks she’s simply perfection, and thinks if the competition would be decided tonight, the winner would be Allison. She wants to hop on the love boat with them, and Dan points out the dancers are probably too young to know what the love boat is, prompting Mary to slap him. As for his own critique, Dan thinks what Ron did for Ivan and Allison was make it look like they weren’t doing a routine, but that they were more or less freestyling around the floor, making everyone else have as much fun as they were having.

Jessica and Jaymz pull hip hop, and they’re a little worried, being that she’s a ballet dancer, and he a jazz dancer. Shane is once again choreographing, and says he likes Jaymz, but thinks he’s in over his head when it comes to hip hop. Jaymz has taken a few classes in it, but it’s Jessica who has never done it at all. Shane feels she overcompensates on the popping, with doing it more as a jerk. Apparently they were all ready for quite the battle, as Shane, Jaymz, and Jessica are all dressed in camouflage. Sargeant Sparks has them doing this dance with scarves, which adds an extra element, as they have to throw it perfectly so that they can pick it up again in their teeth.

Dancing to I Can Make You Dance by Zapp, Jessica and Jaymz are trying real hard, but it’s just time for her to go. She’s come close every week, but it’s just time now. Nigel sees this as tough to critique, because he thinks they danced it well, but sees it like a paint by numbers. It was hip hop by numbers, as it wasn’t as though they felt anything that added to it, and it couldn’t be called hip hop. Mary disagrees, and thinks it was a great performance, and that Jessica has come so far considering she is a ballet dancer. Both of them are used to being up on their toes, but to get down like this, she thinks they did a great job.

Dan says a teacher once told him, “fake it till you make it.” He feels Jaymz and Jessica were faking it, but didn’t ever make it. They were clean and perfectly together, but that’s it. Jaymz tries to defend them, saying this isn’t their normal style, and he’d like to see a popper or locker try to do the ballet dancing that Jessica does. Nigel steps in and says that’s what the show is all about. Everyone is going outside their comfort zone, and everyone does their best. Everyone is a fish out of water here, and some of them have been outstanding.

Of course we all know who was outstanding. It was two of the top three that are outstanding every week – Benji/Donyelle and Musa/Natalie. Travis and Martha were pretty good as well, and Ivan/Allison and Heidi/Ryan certainly were as well. That would leave two of the bottom three couples as being Jaymz/Jessica and Dmitry/Ashlee. It’s up for grabs who the third couple would be, but I’m pretty sure it definitely won’t be Benji and Donyelle or Musa and Natalie. Going home will probably be Jaymz and Jessica. It’s just time for Jessica to go home; she’s overstayed her welcome. And Jaymz’ mouth kind of got away from him tonight. I think that will kill him with Nigel.

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For more So You Think You Can Dance information, see SirLinksalot: So You Think You Can Dance


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