Hmm. Is it just me, or was tonight's finale kind of lackluster? Lacking some definite luster. I think maybe three routines stood out to me out of the ten partner dances. 30% is not the best percentage. And, also? Tonight was a prime example of ridiculously overpraising guest judges. Not to get all rude up in here, but Katie Holmes basically said the exact same thing for every routine. At least Kenny Ortega mixed things up, but neither of them once said anything bad, and there was some bad stuff to be seen, I think we can all agree.
Observation: all of the dances they did with the all-stars were in their own style while the ones with each other seemed to try to make them step more outside the box. This drawing things out of a hat business is clearly bunk.
I'm going to go through by dancer, in their solo dancing order. Up first...
Melanie - Though I'm not sure her solo quite lived up to the one she did last week, I still feel she has the most heartfelt and quietly powerful solos this season. She can do so much with just the smallest movement, and that's what everyone has come to love about her. Were all of her partner dances tonight as powerful? Ehhh... I think, by far, her best routine of the night was with Tadd in their Ray Leeper piece. She had great attitude and dancing to match. Her worst routine of the night, however, opened the show, and was especially sad since it was a reunion with her longtime partner Marko. But their Doriana Sanchez disco just could not be called great by any means. The lifts were labored, and honestly I found the camerawork really distracting. Not to mention the slow song choice. I termed it "weird." And not in a good way. Rounding out the middle were her two contemporary pieces - the first with all-star Robert in a Stacey Tookey contemporary number that just felt like most other contemporary numbers I've already seen, there really wasn't anything extra magical about it for me. The other was, oh me oh my, also choreographed by Stacey Tookey and danced with Sasha. It was fine. Honestly they had so much dancing to do tonight, you can't expect them all to be amazing.
Marko - I think Marko's solo tonight was the best solo he's demonstrated in the competition ever. He really seemed to put his heart and soul into it, and it showed. Marko's best routine of the night was easily the contemporary piece he had with all-star Lauren, choreographed by Tessandra Chavez. They had such a great connection; everything about it was incredibly heartfelt and powerful, but not in an overpowering way, if that makes sense. Honestly my favorite routine of the night, period. I've already mentioned the dismal disco debacle (alliteration!) earlier. Bluck. His second best routine of the night was the Broadway number danced with Sasha and choreographed by Spencer Liff. It had a certain lightness and playful nature to it that was nice to see, as sometimes things can get too dark and sad. Nigel was negative about his performance but, whatever Nigel. The final routine of the evening was the gumboot stepping piece he had with Tadd, choreographed by Chuck Maldonado. I'm... not so sure about this one. I know that the gumboot thing is in the name of the style of dance, but those boots were seriously distracting, and looked incredibly hard to dance in. I can barely walk well in those non-bendy boots. I didn't get it, to be honest.
Tadd - Tadd has had to do a lot of solos over the course of this season, but you know what? I never get tired of seeing them. I love that he brings the sense of humor and uses the stage in unexpected ways. Not to mention his always surprising music choices. Tadd's best piece of the evening was the previously mentioned Ray Leeper routine with Melanie. Though, I must admit that my favorite part of the whole thing was afterward when Cat said, "When all else fails, bring out a pair of comedy boxers." Comedy boxers! Can we please make this a phrase? Tadd's worst piece of the evening was undoubtedly his Mark Ballas choreographed cha cha with Sasha. Egads was that bad. They had absolutely no sexual chemistry, seemed to miss a lot of the moves just slightly. All in all, a serious struggle. And seriously, Sasha looked like a giant next to him! I already talked about that gumboot routine he had with Marko, which I also termed "weird." Two weirds in one night! Not a great sign. But I will say that I thought Tadd was doing the stepping slightly better than Marko. Finally, Tadd's all-star piece was with season four winner Joshua in a Lil C hip hop. Now don't get me wrong, I love Lil C, but I'm rarely a fan of his hard-hitting style of choreography. I think Joshua was out-doing Tadd in it, which is not really a surprise since it's his bread and butter.
Sasha - You know, all of the dancers had good solos tonight, which is not always the case. Sasha was no exception, though I'm having a hard time recalling anything specific about it other than this thing she does with her legs. I don't know what to call it, so we'll just leave it at that. Sasha's best dance of the evening was her all-star dance with Mark (Mark!) in a Sonya Tayeh jazz number. I mean, come on. Mark and Sonya, you can't go wrong. Plus, a shirtless Mark? mmmmmmMark. Oh, sorry. I'll stop the drooling now. Ahem. Okay! They both demonstrated such strength in this piece! It was my second favorite routine of the night. I dig the quirky dark style Sonya always brings, which is obvious to probably everyone by now. Sasha's worst number of the night was, obviously, the cha cha with Tadd. I thought it was weird that the judges were saying she danced it slightly better than him, because honestly I thought he was doing a bit better than her, but then what do I know about ballroom dancing? The answer is only what I've seen on this show, so I am clearly not a reliable source. I think tonight was also the most we've seen Sasha in dresses! Right? I loved her gorgeous purple gown in her Spencer Liff dance with Marko, which I think was her second best dance of the night. Some of you may disagree on that, but I was left not feeling much in that '50s housewives number with Melanie. Maybe I was just tired of seeing so much standard contemporary by that point? Bring on the funky jazz! Oh well.
Phew! Okay, well, that was the last performance show of this season! Who do you think will be taking home the prize tomorrow? Do you agree with Nigel that it's going to be between the girls, or does Marko have a chance of making the top two? Should Tadd just know right now that he's going to be the first eliminated? Can I ask more questions?
If past records are any indication, it should be Melanie to take home the top prize, but if we're just going based on tonight's show, I really don't know. They all had highs and lows, so it's hard to say.
That's all for tonight! Get pumped to see the best routines of the season in the finale tomorrow! I'm sure we'll be seeing at least the Melanie/Marko statues, the tWitch/Sasha breakfast hip hop and the Jordan/Tadd vulture routines, right? Plus that contemporary one from Allison and Marko. Oh and maybe that jazz one with the kiss from Melanie and Marko! Wow that's a lot of Marko. What routines do you hope to see?
I'm done asking questions, I swear.
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