Recap: 'SYTYCD' is just one week away from the finale as the top six compete
Okay, I'm recapping from the TCAs and watching this on a teensy computer screen, so if I describe a performance as "blurry," well, that just means I've forgotten myself. But let's get started! Times are EST, not PST, even though I'm PST. Well, you get it.
8:02 Christina Applegate is our guest judge. She's been dancing since she was 3. And then gave it up when she got pregnant. Quitter. Just kidding. I think she'll have some insights. But I always want to believe in the guest judges and I'm so often disappointed.
8:04 Lots of nattering on about National Dance Day or whatever it is. It's all very inspiring. But I want to see the top six perform instead of watch fuzzy home video of random people attempting to be coordinated. Call me crazy.
8:06 It's a NappyTabs routine with Twitch and Melanie It's a Little Red Riding Hood theme. My God, is there nothing Melanie can't do? She's on point. But I'm going to be nitpicky. I liked, but didn't love it.
8:10 I'd love to tell you what the judges said, but the WiFi blew out. This is what happens when you try to work in a hotel.
8:18 Sasha dances with Kent. I'll admit it, I love watching Sasha. She brings such emotion to everything she does, and you see it in every muscle. Even when she isn't technically perfect, she makes up for it with personality and plain commitment. I liked this a lot. Beautiful work, and so raw, But then, I have a hard time judging Sasha.
8:20 Christina gets her words in order. She says there are great technicians on the show, but Sasha touches a wall and breaks her heart. And then she thanks Sasha for showing the hurt she's felt. Mary doesn't know what hurt Sasha, either. Mary gets weepy. Nigel declares Sasha his favorite dancer, which I guess she wasn't for a while. Nigel is so fickle! Lil' C tries not to cry, but it's 20 ticks past amazing. So, he liked it. Sasha is winning this thing, I swear.
8:30 Marko is going to be a matador with Janette. He needs to get in touch with his Latin roots. Again, this is good, but he seems to lose steam as the dance goes on. This isn't his wheelhouse, though. But the beginning was sharp.
8:33 Mary wants to dance with Marko. Mary thinks his first 10 to 15 seconds were spot on. Good job. Nigel felt it left him cold. He wanted more passion. Lil' C thought he established his dominance through the crotch. If you're wondering, he liked it. Christina admits she doesn't know the genre so she doesn't want to critique it. She thinks he could have gone deeper into the crotch.
8:37 Ricky does his solo. As usual, he has beautiful lines, incredible extension. I think technically he might be the strongest guy left this season.
8:42 Sonya Tayeh does a period piece for Tadd and Ellenore that explodes into crazy sexiness. Oh, this sounds good! Okay, I love the chandelier, I love the idea. But I'm not sure this gave Tadd the platform he needs. Ellenore grabs my attention here, which is fine, but Tadd almost feels like a prop.
8:46 Nigel wanted to see more dancing. Me, too. He was left hanging. Lil' C said Tadd needed to make each move last a lifetime, and he didn't live in the moment. Christina says "get a room." But she loved it. Mary thinks he's still growing. But she loved it and thinks it's amazing that Sonya took such a risk on him.
8:49 Caitlynn's mom loves her. And she misses her.
8:50 Caitlynn does her solo. So graceful. And she cries. Because her mom kind of made her cry, I think, though obviously not on purpose. I mean, the timing of airing that little recording of Mom was not exactly kind, producer people -- I mean, the fact Caitlynn was able to dance at all is pretty remarkable. I know, they're showing these all night, but maybe they could show them AFTER the solos. Just a thought.
8:55 Ricky pairs up with Jaime for a Dee Caspary number. They'll be dancing with sticks. Hmmm. I don't always love what Dee does, honestly, and this might be him trying too hard. But it's a good routine. Ricky is really a dark horse in this competition, and he's beautiful to watch. I could do without the sticks, though.
8:58 Lil' C gives Ricky props for the props. And then says he's really good in a very complicated way. Christina thinks he's a beautiful dancer. But she feels he doesn't dance with the clearest intention, that she needs to see it's harder for him to be away from her than close to her. Whoa, a really, really good comment. Go, Christina! Mary thinks he's saved himself again. Nigel thought it was well danced but he needs some more guts in it.
9:01 I think this is Tadd's dad, but the Slingbox cut out. Anyway, Tadd dances his solo. He's always fun to watch, have to say. It's fine. It doesn't rock my world, but hey, he can do a one-handed hand stand and bounce. That's something.
9:07 Sasha is, according to her dad, a bubbly Peter Pan. As far as he's concerned, she's already won in his heart. I think she's already won period. Whoa, some solo! This is what so many performances have lacked tonight -- fire.
9:08 Caitlynn joins Pasha for the final All-Star performance. It's a samba. She's gonna have to be sexy. You can do it, Caitlynn! And yes, she delivers. This dance is sexy and Caitlynn is, as Nigel says of all the girls, a beast.
9:11 Christina thinks she did really well. Mary thinks she was better and thought her reverse samba rolls were great, lock steps fabulous. Her only criticism is she pulled her face around too much, but her body was dancing. Nigel thought the samba rolls were great. And he felt her face was trying too hard to be sexy. But good enough for him. Lil' C says she needed to swan dive into sexy instead of cannonball into it.
9:19 Marko's mom is a big, drippy mess. Marko does an okay solo. I dunno, I miss him with Melanie, what can I say?
9:20 Melanie's mom tells us she's always been a performer. Melanie does her solo. Man, I feel like these guys are just getting started before they get cut off. We couldn't have longer solos and less plugging of National Dance Day?
9:26 Do you ever miss Ade after watching the show intro? Just a thought.
9:27 Sasha and Ricky will be whacking. Not being familiar with whacking, I can't say whether this was good whacking, but I'm not feeling it. Ricky is a little too graceful in this. And I don't feel a connection between him and Sasha, but Sasha was a little more on target.
9:29 Mary references Princess Lockaroo! She thought Sasha and Ricky did a great job, but they're outside their style. She thinks Sasha was the better whacker. Nigel thought it was fun and told Ricky he can relax more. But he thought Sasha was fabulous. Lil' C wanted them to enjoy it more. Christina liked it but thought they could have whacked it harder. Someone had to make the joke.
9:38 Melanie and Tadd are trying Broadway with Spencer Liff choreographing. Great routine, great dancing. But Tadd seems a little... absent. I'd like this to be the last week someone says he's great "despite being a B-boy," though. He is more than solid out of his style. Melanie is heartbreaking, though. You can just feel her falling in love.
9:41 Nigel loved Melanie's solo. He thinks Melanie is his favorite dancer. And Tadd didn't suck. And thought he was outstanding in what he does. Aack, another "despite being a B-boy" comment. Lil' C thought Melanie was buck and her solo was beefy. And Tadd is doing his thing. Christina loved Melanie's solo. And she took dance to another level. And she doesn't know why Tadd has a better port de bras than most ballet dancers. Mary thought they were fabulous.
Last dance will be a Caitlynn and Marko jazz routine by Sonya Tayeh.
9:50 Caitlynn is trying to escape an overbearing man (in this case, Marko). So, they're both out of character. Oh, I kind of love this. Caitlynn is bringing the tortured and Marko is fierce. Love! Really remarkable. Caitlynn brings it -- much more so than her sexy (which I didn't feel was that bad). And Marko is just as good.
9:53 Lil' C says it was double hash tag buck. Christina declares Marko a beast. And it was Caitlynn's moment. I absolutely agree. Mary felt it was one of Caitlynn's best numbers ever. Nigel thinks Caitlynn came of age tonight. And Marko was sensational.
So, good dancing tonight! But I can't really decide who should go home. No one sucked, that's for sure. But, as Cat says, Thursdays are the worst days of each week. So get out there and vote, people!
Who do you think is going home? Are you ready for tomorrow night (even if you dread it)? Do you agree with Christina that this is the strongest season ever?