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Paris, Tony exit ‘So You Think You Can Dance’

Not much in the way of surprises for this first results show, but at least the right people went home.
/ Source: Entertainment Weekly

This is going to be short, dear readers, since last night’s “So You Think You Can Dance” results show was a night of practically zero surprises and entirely minor revelations. The best thing about it was the Shane Sparks group number that opened the show, which, after multiple viewings, I’ve decided was about mystical urban dance fairies led by an unconvincingly crazy-eyed Queen Caitlin, who has directed her hard-edged hip-hopping fairy underlings to blow their magic dancing dust upon the city’s downtrodden and homeless and turn them into more hard-edged hip-hopping fairy underlings, one of whom danced so hard-edged, he apparently danced himself to death and had to be covered with a black sheet that caused him to kinda levitate off the ground. Or something.

All I really know is that kicked-off dancers Tony and Paris did far better in this massive hip hop number than they did in their partnered hip hop number Wednesday night. And that for yet another season, thanks to his defection to MTV’s “America’s Best Dance Crew,” we can talk about Shane Sparks, but we’re still not allowed to see him in the audience. (Which is still marginally better treatment than “Dancing With the Stars” alum Louis Van Amstel, who’s been MIA from the audience and never once mentioned by Cat or the judges on the show even though he choreographed the two best couples’ routines this week. But I, as I do so often, digress.)

Of the two kicked-off dancers, I feel worse for Paris, who you could tell was working hard not to be crushed by Nigel’s brutally frank admission that the judges’ decision to cut her over Asuka had as much to do with the fact that they had a bajillion contemporary dancers and only two ballroom dancers as it did with Paris’ performance itself on the show.

Again, while I was definitely cheesed by how baldly unfair that concession to “good TV” was to Paris, I have to respect Nigel’s uncommon honesty about it, a rarity among realty TV producers and why this show is still so much classier than its older, more secretive sibling “American Idol.” And besides, Paris’ solo was the most lacking of the bottom three women, a boilerplate mishmash of standard movements that only came to life when she suddenly collapsed to the ground from standing (almost) en pointe.

Karla, meanwhile, brought some charming musicality, deftly matching her movement to “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and turning in, for me, the most fully realized solo out of the bottom six dancers. Ballroom specialist Asuka may have leaned a bit heavily on check-out-my-sexy-rump sass towards the end of her solo, but at least she was able to imbue some real verve into her sans-partner dancing.

Her male ballroom counterpart in the bottom three, however, didn’t quite figure out the trick to bringing a style meant for two dancers into a solo performance. Indeed, Jonathan was smart to launch into those gymnastic flips given just how weak his solo otherwise was — I’m quickly beginning to wonder if he made it to the Top 20 mostly on the power of his winning smile and excellent skin.

Fortunately for Jon, Nigel appeared to have given up on finding his Ivan for this season and cut loose the undeniably out-his-league Tony, who could only manage to display some fancy pointing and splits as the reasons for why he should stay on the show. If Tony means what he said in his farewell interview — “I am dance and dance is me” — then the highly likable kid better get himself into some classes but quick and shore up his fundamentals if he ever wants to have a go at dance as a career.

As for Vitolio, I don’t quite get why Nigel keeps harping on his so-called lack of personality; his solo to me had a quiet fire that was volumes better than anything Tony or Jonathan brought to the table, especially that unreal first leap.

I was really happy, meanwhile, that Wade Robson’s interesting-if-highly-indulgent crash test dummies choreography didn’t doom Ashley and Kupono to the bottom three — for one thing, my mom texted me yesterday morning that “Dad Watched The Crash Dummie (Routine) And Actually Loved It,” so there’s that. (Yes, my mom texts in Title Caps, as should all moms everywhere.) Although, I must say, I was kinda disappointed that we didn’t get to see what purpose, if any, Kupono’s lime green half-muff, half-Muppet tumor was to serve in his solo. Oh well. At least this couple can live to cluck and monkey-call in their interview packages for another week.

Cat’s announcement that Kupono and Ashley were safe was the single real moment of suspense throughout the show. The Chbeeb and Jeanine may have been the only two people worried that they’d been bottom three’d, but I was still tickled by the way Cat tossed away her results cards after giving the duo their reprieve and then told the exultant Chbeeb, “Kiss me, it doesn’t matter!” There was never any doubt, either, which couple out of Asuka and Vitolio, Brandon and Janette, and Jonathan and Karla were safe, but I still appreciated that Brandon and Janette appeared genuinely worried about whether they’d make it or not.

Then there was the rest of the show, i.e. The Part Where A Gloomy Argentine Tango Couple Glumly Stalk And Kick At Each Other Until Suddenly Springing To Life With An Expertly Executed Final Spin, not to mention The Part Where Sean Kingston Also Glumly Stalked The Stage While His Dancers Did Their Best To Light A Fire On The Dance Floor But Only Ever Got As Far As The Match. Yeah, like most of you, I pretty much half-watched these parts while chatting up my friends too.

So that’s that, “SYTYCD”-ers. Paris and Tony are gone, and according to Adam Shankman’s Twitter account, “Looking into the eyes of the dancers u cut is so heartbreaking, it’s my least favorite part of the show. It all became very scary and real. Barf.” (Which only makes me like Adam Shankman even more, by the way.)

We learned that “Naughty Ballerina” Melissa can unleash some righteously “raunchy burps.” We learned that men apparently tend to sweat a lot when physically exerting themselves, and that’s totally gross.

We learned that Evan Kasprzak should really think twice about donning an amply tailored tux if he ever wants people to stop pointing out that he comes up to Cat’s armpit. Speaking of Cat and clothes, we learned that Cat is fond of dresses with giant bows and pockets.

And finally, we learned that yours truly is one for two in his predictions of who’s sent home, which places me at 268th out of the some 1900 people thus far playing’s “SYTYCD” Prediction Challenge. Think you can do better than me and my “SYTYCD” colleagues Annie Barrett and Alynda Wheat? Click on over and sign up, and see how well you stack up!

And be sure check back here today for a very special reality TV hosting, bow-and-pockets loving “SYTYCD” blogger’s PopWatch debut!