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

So You Think You Can Dance 5, Aug. 5 – Peaking At the Right Time


This is one of the best nights of the season … always. It’s the four top dancers of this season, all dancing with each other. There usually isn’t much disappointment. And with the selection of dancers we have this season, it ought to be amazing. And this year, just like on American Idol, the finale is coming from the Kodak Theater.

Tonight on the judging panel we have Adam Shankman, Mary Murphy, and Nigel Lythgoe. Of the final four, Adam thought some of them would be herein the final four all the way back in Las Vegas, and others he had absolutely no idea would be here. They are unbelievably tenacious, aggressive, work really hard, and have amazing talent. He notes there are 3,000 people in the theater, and millions tuning in to see dancers, and asks how awesome is that?

Mary says that dancers feed off energy, and tonight is going to be a feast, as we are at the Kodak with 3000 fans. And she has a challenge for them. Are they going to bring it, because she knows the dancers will. They cheer loud enough to let Mary know yes, they will bring it. Nigel wants the dancers to leave all the excuses at the side of the stage, comparing it to the Old West stepping out with guns on their hips. They have to come out and do it. No one is going to give them this title. They have to earn it, and they should be privileged to be in this theater.

Wade Robson instructs the final four in a group routine which is about two football jocks hitting on two cheerleaders. The cheerleaders turn out to be way more than the jocks can handle. Jeanine Mason doesn’t think anyone was expecting to see cheerleading on this show, but she urges them to think big. This movement is “way fast” for Brandon Bryant, and Evan Kasprzak says this is just a big deal to do this as final four. Kayla Radomski thinks they’ll entertain everybody.

The final four come out and dance to Boy Boys Boys by Lady Gaga. It’s honestly so entertaining that my fingers aren’t even hovering over the keys here waiting to comment, as I’m just having a good time watching it. They’re kind of naughty cheerleaders, as they have red undies on underneath their blue and white cheerleader outfits. I’d call Kayla and Jeanine pretty equal, but there is one moment where Evan didn’t quite keep up with Brandon. But overall, it’s just a really fun routine.

Jeanine and Evan are paired up first tonight, working with Sonya Tayeh on a routine about a man wanting to keep a girl, yet she doesn’t care too much anymore. Jeanine think Evan is doing great being a punching bag, and he wants it known that this girl does have a violent side. In fact, for awhile, Jeanine and Sonya both throw Evan around a little.

Heartbreaker by MSTRKRFT ft. John Legend is the music behind Evan and Jeanine, and they’re both really good on this. Evan is better than I would have given him credit for before this. We all knew Jeanine was amazing. But because it has a great story to it, he can give it the Broadway edge. I just don’t see many missteps, and I can’t see where the judges have any room to tell him again he’s not putting enough into it.

Adam tells Jeanine and Evan that it was great, and while he knows it sounds weird, as it’s a bunch of nevers, he never saw Jeanine coming, yet she’s been dominating week after week. He so underestimated her, and he’ll never forgive himself. He definitely never saw Evan coming, and never imagined him in the top four, yet this season would never have been the same without him. Adam thinks he’s like the molehil that became a mountain. He also calls out Sonya for doing a good job, because at this stage it’s not only important to entertain us, but also to get the kids through. He thinks she choreographed to their strengths.

Mary thought the two of them would be a good partnership, and she was right. Jeanine stood out a little bit more, just like every week. Evan was certainly no punching bag out there and did hold his own. Nigel wants to be honest and says it’s an enormous stage, so they have to bring their performances up to this level. Jeanine is feisty and strong and tomboyish, so she has the strength to do this. This is the last time he wants to see Evan thrown around the stage tonight. He has to be in charge of his own destiny. If he brings a big enough personality, he can do this. He’s well-loved by the public, and he has to step up to do it. Nigel loved when Evan jumped on Jeanine’s back, as it showed how strong she’s become in technique and strength.

Cat has an interview with each of the finalists, and first up is Brandon. He thinks he’s learned so much from everyone. His entire body is in pain, but he’s so excited to be here. He misses Janaette Manrara the most, as he wouldn’t be who he is today without her. His favorite routine was their tango, as they could forget about the audience and just do what they love to do. In regards to Mia Michaels, he says to know someone that you respect so much and doesn’t feel the same … he thinks she was giving him tough love. Once he finally impressed her, he knew he finally did it and that dancing was what he loved, and that he wasn’t going anywhere. He didn’t think he would make the show, as he doesn’t see the talent that we see. Yet now, if he stays focused and just worries about himself, he thinks he could win.

Brandon dances his solo to Karl Jenkins’ Dies Irae. As usual, it’s amazing. There’s just no other words to describe it, especially as he ends it down in the splits. Adam call this competing, as he threw that down on the floor. It was very take no prisons kind of thing. He’s not so such he understands the board shorts, but he’s like an extreme dancer, a super athlete, and it’s awe-inspiring to watch him do his thing. It felt a bit frantic, but Brandon is competing now.

Brandon gave Mary goosebumps. He is athletic. He is dynamic, and he defies gravity. His arms slice through the air, and he’s born to dance. She really does feel that, and it’s a privilege and honor to her, as she starts to break down in tears again. Nigel agrees with Mia about Brandon … he is amazing. Last week he showed everyone where he was coming from. His solo was totally outstanding. Whether they were board shorts or not, he just wiped out the opposition.

Kayla and Brandon are the next couple up, working with Tyce Diorio. It’s called Bye Bye Life and is from All That Jazz. He took it to a much more showy place, because he wants to put his own spin on it. Kayla says Tyce came at them full force, because it’s his last number of the season, and he’s not going to hold back. Brandon thinks it’s really fun and theatrical, but it was kind of hard, with Tyce asking him to do things he’s never even heard of.

Brandon is covered up by a sheet at the beginning of the routine, and she takes it off as they both get up and start dancing. Wow is all I can say watching Kayla with those legs and spinning like a propeller in front of Brandon. This is just another number that I’m just sitting there staring at, totally entertained and forgetting to write about. It’s just really good. Period.


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