7/8/09

So You Think You Can Dance

I recently took the time to rant and rave about why you should be watching this show. Rant is located HERE.

I am actually mid-episode as I type this. It's such a treat, every week I look forward to both episodes, even though I'm typically yelling at the television on Thursday nights. My sister in South Bend watches, "America's Got Talent" religiously. So I figure we can be like the Landers Sisters of reality television.

Evan is still my favorite dancer, but I admit that his Gene Kelly style origins have made me forever biased. But this season is so packed with incredible dancers. There's one or two I don't love, but it's just because they don't stand out personality-wise, at this point, they're all wonderfully talented. So I certainly can't complain.

However, I am noticing that the choreography this year is...spotty. Some good routines, a few great ones, and a whole lotta weirdness. There's a lot of stunt choreography happening, and more often than not, the dancers pay the price for that because I am assuming that most of America doesn't know who's really to blame. (I.E. Kristin's "alien" routine last week...it was dreadful, but that had nothing to do with her. She hasn't had a chance to shine since the Bollywood routine the first week of the show. It's a lot of the luck of the draw this season.)

I felt the same way about Phillip and Jeanine's Russian Folk Dance tonight. It was silly looking, but that's just the style of dance, it's so culturally different, that it will probably always look silly to us. But they did a great job with what they were given, but because the voting base for this show is so strongly teen...they'll probably be in the bottom three because the tweens of the world didn't like their costumes. It's infuriating sometimes.

Anyway, I've been thinking a lot lately how much this show is a true revival of the dance contest shows of the 70's and 80's. They were everywhere back then, heck, "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" used to practically play on loop on WTTV 4 when I was a kid.

Then there was, "Soul Train" and I learned about Danny Terrio from a single joke in Frank Oz, Steve Martin and Michael Caine's brilliant, "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels". Needless to say, I'm really glad for the revival. As far as I'm concerned...American Idol can slink away into the annals of karaoke history and we can bring on more dance shows. But, "So You Think You Can Dance" will probably always be the best of them all.

That's not to mention that one of the best things about the show is the smart judges. They give useful critiques, they're not mean-spirited and they're not pandering. They don't avoid giving critiques that the audience might not understand, which...gasp...forces the audience to learn!

This week's Friday Night Videos will definitely feature dance. Stay tuned...

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