Well, it’s here. The final performance show. It’s a good thing this isn’t a video blog, because you would have to witness me blubbering on to my computer. So, with that in mind, let’s get to the show….
Judges: Nigel Lythgoe, Mary Murphy, Katie Holmes aka Mrs. Tom Cruise aka Joey Potter, (If only Pacey was here too…..) and Kenny “I want to remake Dirty Dancing” Ortega. Since I won’t use this as a platform on my thoughts on that, lets instead focus on the fact that Kenny Ortega also directed multiple episodes of Gilmore Girls. Including one of my all-time favorites, Friday Night’s Alright for Fighting which has what I consider to be hands down the best directed scene in any episode.
(Did you notice how Cat’s hair changed between the “tonight on So You Think You Can Dance” and when she walked out after she introduced the top 4? Yeah… that’s because they pre-taped tomorrow’s Top 20 routine. Fun tidbit for you.)
Everyone dances with everyone else tonight, plus an all-star. And a solo. So let’s get to it.
Melanie & Marko
Choreographer: Doriana Sanchez
My brother who is visiting immediately pointed out that the version of this song was the “12 inch version.” Dirty jokes followed for several minutes. But we were also so happy to see these two back together again. That being said, they did seem a little uncomfortable with this routine, but think they handled it pretty well. How they managed not to have a seizure with the lights is beyond me. To be honest, they really haven’t veered very far away from contemporary/jazz/lyrical hip-hop/ballroom this season. Even the ballroom has been more lyrical than standard ballroom. I’m glad that this was the first routine because they have the rest of the two hours to make up for it. To be fair, it wasn’t the worst disco ever on the show, it was just unfortunate it fell on the finale. I’m disappointed though
Sasha & Mark
Choreographer: Sonya Tayeh
MARK! Shirtless! Thank you Lady Gaga for giving Mark a chance to come back in order for him to do this routine. He was the only guy that could do it. This routine was so Sonya with the intensity and the, for lack of a better words, strangeness. The awkwardness. I want to say grotesqueness. I hope you realize I mean that in the best way. I really loved it. Sasha matched Mark step for step. She was strength. Sasha came to win tonight and you have to appreciate that. Good on ya, girl.
Tadd & Joshua
Choreographer: Lil’ C
Can I take a minute to say how excited I am to see Joshua back on he show. He was one of my favorite winners because he just came out of nowhere and did every routine from contemporary to bollywood to perfection. Take some time and check out his routines with Katee on YouTube. But on to tonight. I think it was a good hip-hop routine. Both of the guys hit it hard and were in sync with each other. I especially liked the floor work towards the end of the dance. That was sick. But I found myself veering over to Joshua a lot more than Tadd, which isn’t the greatest when this is the finale. (Of course, as Cat pointed out, Joshua is delicious) However I think Tadd did do a pretty good.
Melanie and Robert
Choreographer: Stacey Tookey
So excited these two are dancing together! Melanie has to be in love with Robert for this dance. Wow. Tough gig there, Mel. I think the best thing I can say about this routine is that up until this point I had been typing furiously while watching and this piece made me stop and watch without typing away simultaneously. I was completely drawn in. And not just by Robert’s abs. During judging, Kenny says he is desperate to work with Mel. And there in lies the one scenario in which I will be interested in Dirty Dancing. And now Cat is Mel’s agent trying to get that to happen. Adorable. I think I’ve said it all about Melanie, and there isn’t anything to add. The routine was great, and as they took a time out from judging to discuss- Melanie is just plain great too.
Sasha & Marko
Choreographer: Spencer Liff
You know, Broadway has been underwhelming a lot this season which is unfortunate because I think it is an incredibly dynamic style. In fact my favorite Broadway this season may actually be the Tyce number from Vegas. This was probably one of the better ones, but I have to agree with Nigel a bit – it wasn’t my favorite. However, I think Marko was really great at taking on the character. And good for him, because I think it will help getting more offers when this is done. Overall, I just wasn’t in awe of this one. It was good, just not great.
Her interview with Cat was effortlessly charming. She giggled. She cried. She talked of kissing Marko and crushing on Neil (who doesn’t?). She talked about her father who passed away. It was adorable. And then she danced and I was in awe. I’m always so sad when the music cues the end of the solo for Melanie. I just wanted it to keep going forever. Mel’s been my girl since day one and nothing will change that. How’s that for unbiased journalism??
Marko is a silly kid. He is just a goof, but talking about that dance with Allison when he told his mom he loved her – there were some tears. You just have to love him. And man, that solo. It was strong and full of interesting musicality. Again – sad when the music stopped because I was enjoying it so much.
Sasha & Tadd
Choreographer: Mark Ballas (take that DWTS!)
Listen, about 20 seconds in there is an ass smack. So I’m paying attention, but that’s unfortunate because I thought it was, well, just alright. The choreo was sassy and you could see Mark had a good time choreographing for a couple that did not involve a so-called star. Unfortunately, the execution was just not great. It fell flat. And now all four dancers are on an even playing field, because if you ask me this was just as bad, if not worse, than M&M’s disco. And, OMG!! Sorry, Nigel just said AGAIN about Tadd being out of his style (this is the second time tonight it’s been brought up). As soon as he said it my brother started hysterical laughing because I think he felt the steam rising from me. After that there is a lot talk about how they had a lot of routines and this was tough. I don’t like that excuse, but let’s just move on.
Marko & Lauren
Choreographer: Tessandra Chavez
Loved it. You could feel and see the tension in both of them. They were so together in each movement and breath. You could see when it was done it took a lot out of them emotionally. I really think it was Marko’s moment of the night. The “difficult relationship” storyline has been done numerous times on this show. Heck, it’s been done numerous times tonight. But this specific routine was, as Kenny said, a gift. It showed that it isn’t just the story but the way it is portrayed by the choreographers and the dancers. This was an example of how it is done right. Love love love.
Tadd says he has gotten here because of his solos, and frankly, I think he is right. His routines have been hit or miss – Travis’s vulture routine being the best, as he points out – but his solos are always amazing. And once again he proves that he is a personality with a lot of talent with his solo tonight. Although I don’t think he compared to Mel or Marko’s solos. Or, frankly, any of his previous solos. Which pretty much sums up tonight – slightly lackluster compared to the rest of the season.
Melanie & Tadd
Choreographer: Ray Leeper
Melanie (wearing Sandy’s pants from the end of Grease) danced the first third of this rotuine with only one shoe (on purpose) which I found impressive on it’s own. I thought this was a really dynamic piece. It was sexy and not just because Tadd got down to his boxers. I think they both got in to the characters, especially Mel. From the poses to the faces, she was on. And everyone was talking about it. Tadd did wonderfully too. It was one of his best of the season. We seem to be on the way to redeeming this evening. Right as it is getting close to the end. I hope we get more Ray Leeper next season. His routines have been fantastic!
I’m glad that a good portion of her chat with Cat was talking about Natalia, her sister. And then the two best routines from her – Breakfast with Twitch and the wall with Kent. I could watch those over and over. So good. As was her solo. It was very Sasha. I don’t know if I have the words to describe her style, but that 30 second solo is it.
Melanie & Sasha
Choreographer: Stacey Tookey
Cat points out the last time these two danced together Lady Gaga threw a shoe at them. I’m hoping Katie Holmes throws Suri on stage (she is there in the audience). In the past, the two girl routines haven’t been as moving, but the Mia Michael’s routine a few season back with Jeanine and Kayla seemed to change it. And this year these two ladies have shown just how strong two women can be dancing together. I thought the choreography was moving and challenging. It managed to portray the fierceness and the frailty of the housewives of the 50s. So well done. (Sadly – no Suri toss though. Boooo)
Marko & Tadd
Choreographer: Chuck Maldonado
Style: Gumboot Stepping
Huh. We decide to close the finale on a new style? Okay then. I mean it is interesting to learn the roots of stepping. But it would have been more interesting if Tadd and Marko hadn’t been a beat and half off from each other almost the entire routine. I keep thinking to myself, “Oh man… if this had been during the Joshua/Twitch finale…” It wasn’t great for me. Mary liked it. Nigel agreed with me. Sad to say it was an off way to end the night.
So…. that was… ummm. I don’t know. I’m sad. I have enjoyed the season. I think there have been really strong dancers. But this night was lackluster over all. Also lackluster, Katie’s judging. I’ve avoided discussing it because I think there really isn’t much to say. What we do know – she loves them all and what they are wearing. And that’s just wonderful. Kenny was better, but really, only slightly.
It will come down to Melanie or Sasha, I think. Just like Nigel, it has always been about the girls this season. I will be voting for Melanie. What did you all think? Were you also disappointed tonight or were my expectations just too high?
Check back in tomorrow night for the results! I’ve heard some of the dances they are doing – be excited!!
Written by Melissa Miller. Find her on Twitter: @serrae
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