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Discussion in 'TV Show Talk' started by Stuart Sweet, Aug 5, 2009.
Well, America, it's down to your top four... who will it be?
As so often happens with these overhyped finales, this one fell flat for me. Very flat.
Too much judging, and (yes HDG) too much manipulation of opinion and results. I'll bet if I go back and time it out, there will be twice as much time devoted (and I use the word on purpose) to the judges and their by now stale, predictable comments, then there was to actual dancing. How about more dancing and fewer judges blathering on? What a concept!
Too much sensory bombardment and not enough simple (and I use the word purposely) substance. Flashing lights and pounding music may impress teenagers but it gets old for more mature viewers. The show could use more simplicity which is probably the most underrated virtue. Back to basics, maybe even a bit more (dare I say) beauty.
But no, in producer/judge/choreographer minds BIG SHOW dancing needs to be IN YOUR FACE!! Thus a preponderance of frantic and/or furious dance routines. For viewers like me, and yes I may be a minority, it's just fatiguing. Especially those unrelentingly war-like routines by Laurie Anne Gibson who made the dance of Brandon and Evan into a dog fight that even Michael Vick would be ashamed of.
Am I the only one getting tired of all the warrior, violent, themes where the dancers have to act angry all the time? Apparently anger is poignant and profound while joyfulness is shallow and boring. So all too often we get a celebration of what's base and ugly in the human experience, and a dismissal of what's beautiful.
Obviously I'm talking beyond just the finale now into a broader critique of the judges and choreographers on SYTYCD. And Nigel is surely one of the root causes. I remember back a few shows how he spit out his contempt for a slow waltz (was it with Brandon and Jeanine?) with ethereal music that he found utterly boring and worthless. He even bordered on criticizing the choreographer(s), which on SYTYCD is an extreme rarity. His criticism was so venomous that he probably scared off other choreographers from creating anything of simplicity and beauty in that way that might meet a similar scathing review. So we get battle after battle, and tonight's finale that was the apotheosis of blood sport. Will Brandon kill off Evan or will Evan turn nasty enough to win the money? Stay tuned if you can stomach it one more night.
So long as I'm complaining... Hated that inane football player cheerleader drivel that opened the show too. Maybe that put me in a bad mood for the rest of the show. There, now I feel better.
I agree in general with peak_reception, except I think he means Nigel not Simon.
There was too much talking and there were too many lighting cues. The whole show could have been a tight 90 minutes quite easily. But apparently America won't revolt against overly talky showpieces, so they keep coming.
I liked Evan and Kayla's number the best of all, and Brandon and Jeanine's number would be second. Still, despite what the judges said, I didn't see a huge amount of desperate effort as I did last year. The judges did their best to discourage people from voting for Evan, and I wonder if there will be a backlash.
I think Jeanine was probably the best last night, although I think all the dancers peaked too early, her included. The best performances this year were in the early part of the season.
Yes I meant Nigel (now corrected). The reason I typed Simon is because his reminds me of Simon from American Idol in many ways. Maybe not that bad but still too much ego and not enough subtlety.
I also thought Jeanine had the best dance of the night in her solo. That pirouette she executed, devolving into controlled slow motion at the end was simply amazing.
Brandon is hands down the best.
The most consistent, the most versatile, the most dynamic, and the only one who makes any partner look better.
At one time or another, all the judges concurred those points.
But now that this is a popularity phase...Jeanine will likely win...especially with the obvious (and somewhat shameless) promotion to that end by 2 of the judges.
It will come down to who people that take the time to call in vote to win, not who is the best dancer.
Sadly, that's the way alot of these "lack of reality" shows work out.
Jeanine got my one vote both here and via the phone line .. Normally I don't vote via phones at all, but WTH. No speed-dial routines, though.
I did think all of the dancers looked good .. even Evan. My wife kept harping on about his face and how it makes him look "bad" .. The Judges often had it out for him and did so last night as well, but were a bit more respectful in their comments (I thought) than in some past shows. Adam looked like he was going to pass out at the end talking about how each of the 4 could win (and why).
I think Kayla will be the first to leave of the four .. assuming they knock them off in order. For the season, I think Brandon should win of the four, but it may come down to "Evan's posse of voters" and how well Jeanine pulled it off last night. Should be an interesting results show and hopefully we'll get to see Phillip perform once more .. in his style.
That's why they call it "America's favorite dancer" not "the best dancer this season." I picked Brandon out early and of the final four he deserves to win the most. But, I think Jeanine is peaking in popularity right now and if anyone can beat the inexplicable Evan, it is she.
I wouldn't worry too much .. Like Nigel said. All 20 of the "Top-20" now have SYTYCD on their resume. If they want work, they can get work and they will all continue to get better.
I haven't watched the show yet - and probably won't get to until Sunday, so I won't peek back into this thread until after I've seen it, since the results will be out before I get to watch the dancing.
However, this comment stood out to me, especially in light of the fact that the last couple of weeks they've had "reruns" of all the emmy nominated dances.
I can't remember all of them off the top of my head, but thinking back to them, you have the bench routine (Heidi/Travis), the hummingbird/flower (Hok/Jamie), the businessman leaving his wife (Mark/Chelsie), and the door routine with Twitch/Katie.
They all tell a story, and they didn't have alot of special effects to doll up the dance. It was all about the dance, with a prop here or there, but it was all letting the dance tell the story.
I agree with you that too often the chorographers/producers/judges get too caught up in making it "bigger and better" and forget that the most successful dances on the show have been, for the most part, the simplest, most sincere.
Don't forget the Breast Cancer dance from this year ..
As for "flash" .. the new stage certainly had some odd lighting that I'm sure the camera operators have not gotten used to. It's more controlled in the Studio I think .. and likely there was more opportunity to practice there (not to mention having done it a number of times as well)
I felt the judges carried it to a whole new level of "persuasion" this season. They haven't said anything nice about Evan in weeks, yet people must be enjoying his dances to keep voting for him. And the other three are simply amazing all the time. I found it interesting that none of the judges said anything about the lack of synchronicity to Brandon's and Kayla's routine near the end. Nigel did, however, comment on their beautiful turns which were together. They used to be better at pointing out the good and bad in the dances, while this season they have seemed much more biased to me.
I liked Evan and Kayla's routine and Mia's choreography for Kayla and Jeanine. All of Brandon's dances were so dramatic, not showing a "softer" side once last night. He excels at that type of routine, and I think he is the most accomplished dancer, especially at only 19 years of age, but thinking through the season, his best dances were either extremely fast or highly dramatic. He didn't do as well with the slower numbers (that I can recall) which need more control.
I prefer Kayla's style to Jeanine's. Jeanine is more "fierce" in her motions and expression while I see Kayla as more graceful in general but capable of portraying passion on stage.
I enjoyed all the solos, but as I was watching Brandon's I was thinking it's a bit too much--too frantic for me--which Adam Shankman then said in his critique. Jeanine's pirouette was superb! I enjoyed Evan's all over again, and I thought Kayla showed why she was in the top four.
All in all, I found it to be a good night of high level dancing, but not the choreography that we'll probably remember in seasons to come.
I totally agree with most of this Peak. The set that they used up until last night was perfect for the show. Small and engaging. Having this at the Kodak was just a bad move; the stage layout just didn't lend itself to good camera angles. Musically, the only piece I didn't like was the paso routine set to something from The Matrix. The dancing portion of that was amazing, but the song didn't fit the dance at all. I always complain about this because it happens on DWTS as well.
Evan: First eliminated tonight. He is an amazing Broadway dancer in his own right and that was clearly evident in his solo. In all the numbers, both Sonya's group number and his two pairs routines, Evan was the weakest of all.
Kayla: She is an amazing dancer. It doesn't matter what style she draws or is given, she shines.
Jeanine: Who was that girl last night and where did the Jeanine from the weekly shows go? She peaked at the right time.
Brandon: He is the male version of Kayla. No matter what style, he flat out shines.
Cheer Routine: We liked it. Sonya is a choreographer that can get the dancers to give her the best that they can regardless.
Broadway: Tyce has always been one of my wife and I's favorites. Last night was no exception. Brandon and Kayla were great but at one point it looked as is Brandon got a little lost.
Pop-Jazz: Whoever that choreographer was, we neither one liked this routine. Brandon just flat out danced Evan.
Contemporary: Mia always manages to find something and make it memorable. Not Emmy worth memorable, but great none the less. Both Jeanine and Kayla shined. Hard to say one out danced the other.
Jive: Good but not great. Evan looked like he ran out of gas.
Paso Double: Great routine, horrible song. Louis is amazing as he has shown both here and on DWTS.
My uneducated guess as to final two: Brandon and Jeanine; but who knows Evan might just win the whole thing despite all the negatives from everyone last night.
I do think that the dancers are wonderful and crazy talented. It's all the junk they're surrounded by and put through in the BIG SHOW which bothers me.
And what does the one, single winner get? Did I hear $250.000 correctly in a previous show? While the runners-up get nothing?? That seems so unfair it's not even funny. :nono2:
Wouldn't this be more fair:
4th Place gets $ 25,000.00
3rd Place gets $ 50,000.00
2nd Place gets $ 75,000.00
1st Place gets $ 100,000.00
The Winner-Take-All formula is outdated and cruel except to one lucky recipient. Why shouldn't SYTYCD spread the wealth around to more than just one dancer. They ALL helped make Millions for the show, not just the one lucky winner.
All the other Top Ten should get something too. Just my humble opinion. Fairest of all might be something like this:
1st Place gets 100,000.00
2nd Place gets 90,000.00
3rd Place gets 80,000.00
And so on down to 10th place who gets $10,000.00
Spread the wealth! The dancers deserve it. Still a pittance compared to what the judges and everyone else associated with the show makes.
-- jody g.
That was Laurie Anne Gibson, the choreographer obsessed with fighting. Ugh!
Thank you peak, for putting into words what many of us are feeling.
If it were up to the judges, the finals would be:
If it were strictly up to the unmanipulated voters, it would be:
But since none of the above is the case, what we see will be unpredictable.
I think it would be very difficult to have watched this show all season and feel "unmanipulated."
Was it just me or was there not as much growth from the dancers this year like in seasons past? Did that have to do with the fact that of the top 20, 12 were contemporary dancers who are used to choreography?
I am really hoping season 6 shows us more than just contemporary dancers who at times perform more gymnastics than dancing.
Agreed, Mr. Guercio. I hope that Evan's brother Ryan makes it into the top 20, and I hope he is joined by ballroom dancers, jazz dancers, and perhaps another ballet dancer.
I didn't see lots of growth in any of the dancers either, Jody, certainly not what we've seen in the past. If anyone, Jeanine showed the most right after (and because) Phillip left. As more accomplished dancers are auditioning and making the top 20, it seems like the choreographers are able to create more difficult dances right from the beginning. There's not much of an arc to the dancers' growth. And Evan may have run out of gas--several of his dances were very close together.
It looked like a lot bigger audience at the Kodak, which I'm guessing is why the finale was held there.
Wow! I always skip through most of Cat talking, so I really didn't know the prize had jumped to $250,000! I checked the web site and saw that Joshua also won that amount. Wasn't it $100,000 before that, or had it been going up and I didn't notice? No wonder they have so many people auditioning!!
I noticed an absence of your favorite style in there Mr Sweet ( for those that don't know, Stuart is a hip-hop machine :lol: )