SYTYCD Season 4 Finale: America’s Favorite Dancer is Joshua Allen!

This show can often shock us with its results. In each episode, the audience has made us eat crow, and this week was no different, except our pollsters were asked to dine with us. We barely had enough to go around.

In a different approach to earlier weeks, we will cover the results first, because that is what was the focus of this show. The results were already in, the envelopes sealed and the cards dealt. But we will review the show in its entirety after this discussion, and if you didn’t see it, there were numerous surprises you will find entertaining and some important hints at what will be on the tour, so please read the entire review and vote in our polls. We put a ton of effort into it for you and would love your input. Thank you.

We could totally understand Joshua winning. After trailing in our polls by as much as 3-1, he made a major surge as the show was nearing its start. It was close enough that the telephone vote could have gone either way, but seeing Twitch there on the stage with Joshua made it surreal, like when you watch a movie and you say, “That could never happen in real life”.

Katee was offered a runner up prize of $50,000.00. We get the impression the show added this surprise when they realized how unexpected the result was. Katee took it well and followed with an excellent performance; ironically, it was with Twitch.

This has been a year where the best have often been eliminated in favor of the underdog, but in this case, whoever was dialing those phones were punching in the wrong keys. Our Polls had Twitch as dead last, out-voted 5-1!! Statistically, it all seems rather odd that the telephone dialers felt so differently.

After 35 hours of show, 167 performances and 60 million votes, for Twitch to be in the final two was farcical. We believe this demonstrates that there is something wrong with the system of voting on the show? Twitch placed in front of Katee?? Twitch is a great street dancer, but he shouldn’t have placed in front of Mark, Chelsie, Courtney or Will, let alone Katee!

But in a way, there was some justice. Katee, by being selected as the top woman performer got a $50,000.00 prize. For coming in second, Twitch got diddly.

And Now For the Show.

This was a wonderful show, well choreographed and presented. Let’s start by introducing our “jidges.” Mia Michaels, Adam Shankman, Debbie Allen, Mia Michaels, Nigel Lythgoe and Little C.

The show started with a move through a number of flashbacks from the season. It was quick, but brought back some fond memories.

They then brought back the entire top 20 to dance to a set choreographed by Shane Sparks and danced to “BOOM”, by SIN feat. T-Pain. This was basic hip-hop. The choreography was fun, bringing out some of the best talent on the show. One move where Gev slides under the line of women as they each jump over him. As Little C says, it was “buck”. They then clustered into a group and everyone gradually drops to the floor leaving only the final four standing. Cute metaphor yes?

So the show moved to letting the six “jidges” choose their favorite set from the season. These are likely the sets that will be performed on the tour, so make sure you don’t miss them. Nigel Lythgoe had first pick and selected one of our favorites, and one we already said would be on the tour, “Bollywood”, which may be more appropriately spelled “Bali-Wood”.

Katee and Joshua were at the ready and began their routine. You could tell how much these two love to perform with each other. There is no point in presenting an encore of our prior review of this piece, other than to say these guys gave us goose bumps once again, and you can watch it here.

Mary selected Courtney and Gev, performing to “Wishing on a Star” by Rose Royce.  This piece has a richer feel than any performed to songs by Ford Taurus.  The set had some of the sexiest moves in the show this year with Courtney showing how provocative she can be. Had this been a dance in her repertoire last night, the results of this competition may have been different.

Surprise 1

Now, for a break, there was a popping championship, incorporating two of the poppers that the judges voted through to Vegas. The first, Philip Chbeeb, had to resign before going to Vegas because he contracted pneumonia. And Robert Muraine resigned after getting to Vegas when he realized that there was much more to the show than just popping. Neither could have won the competition, but their popping skills defy everything we know about physics, so they are clearly worth watching compete.

This was the first time Robert and Philip met and they went head to head. Robert went first, and did some basic moves. Philip looked unfazed and moved into a set of his own that was quite challenging. But then Robert stole the rest of the show with moves that could not be duplicated by any other human on the planet. This kid is a major freak show with the way he can move his body. Robert finished by mimicking Philip’s signature move easily. Adam Shankman concurred with what we had said to each other half way through the performance, “Robert, you are a freak of nature!”. The judges voted Robert the winner 5-1. We have no idea what he won, but it was fun.

Adam Shankman called Twitch and Comfort back to the stage, for their set performed to “Forever” by Chris Brown. This hip-hop piece has been reviewed on our site before and will be on the tour. It is freakish how good it gets when these two fantastic hip hop dancers hook up. The finale Russian walk and heart pump are classic and only created and performed this well by artists in the top of their field.

Little C called out Chelsie and Mark to perform to “Bleeding Love” by Leona Lewis. This was a classic, and they took it another step as they continued to prove why they are champions. Had things played out differently, these two could have easily been in the finals instead of Twitch and Courtney. And we believe that this dance shows that America may have erred on calling for their elimination.

Surprise 2

Mary Murphy then surprised even Nigel by taking the stage in a hot short red dress dancing with D’mitri from last season, with his shirt fully open. Mary demonstrated she still has the legs to move on the floor. She wore the outfit that Courtney should have worn last night in the Jive. Had Courtney worn that red, frilly dress, instead of a one-piece bathing suit, we know that dance would have been much better received.

Mia Michaels then called on Katee and Will for the classic danced to “Imagine” by David Archuleta. If you remember, earlier in the season, this dance was performed to near perfection in the competition, but Katee bumped her head moving under Will’s arm. This time, it was flawless and brought the entire crowd to its feet as well as the judges. This demonstrated that these two were the best dancers in this competition. America does not like to be told whom to vote for, but sometimes the experts really do know best. These two were perfect.

Adam Shackman called on Mark and Courtney dancing to the Garden by Mirah. This is the sexy Burlesque piece where Courtney wears a single net stocking half torn and Mark distinguishes his performance with the look of Alex Delarge, played by Malcolm McDowell, from “A Clockwork Orange”. Great set and we look forward to it on the tour.

First Elimination

They then brought out the four finalists to cut Courtney. She knew she wouldn’t beat Katee. She got a nice bouquet of flowers. She took the loss well, as she should, because she is a star now and will be cheered again and again on the tour and after that in every performance of which she is a part.

They then had the final five men perform Nigel’s piece choreographed to “Five Guys Named Moe” by Joe Jackson. This piece is so much fun that if you haven’t seen it, watch it; if you have, watch it again (we did, twice), and expect it live on tour.

They then presented a dance from the performers of “Cirque du Soleil” done to “Homage to the Rabbits” by Eric Serra. It is an incredibly dark piece danced with everyone in rabbit costumes and choreographed by, you guessed it, the dark man himself, Wade Robson, of “Thriller” fame.

Second Elimination

They then leaped to the biggest mistake on the show we have ever seen, eliminating Katee and leaving Twitch. She was awarded a prize of $50,000.00 to compensate her for America’s inept analysis of dance. The judges last night tried to subdue their praise of Katee, we think to keep this from being a blow out, but they instead got America to forget how wonderful she is. They played back her prior dances from the season, and we remembered, she not only made herself the winner, she brought the male dancers to the show. Twitch’s most memorable dances were with Katee, and if not for those, he likely would not have been voted through.  Will’s best performance was with Katee, and we all know how the pairing of Joshua and Katee worked out.

Sour grapes are worth eating after you saw Katee lose. It was sad, and it was wrong. We have to believe that this was an error on the part of the show; perhaps what they were inferring with the new prize for Katee is that there will be a winner on both the men and women’s side from now on, and it will not be clear if the leader in the runner-up gender finished second or third. We are thinking that Katee could have actually finished second here and we were misled by the show because they wanted to play up the final draw between the men. No clue, but if America did vote for Twitch over Katee, we know they were in the “dead zone” with their cell phones.

Surprise 3

After the break, we found Cat Deely sitting in Nigel’s place in the judges panel.  Could this be a  signal something was up?  Cat chatted with Debbie Allen for a little while who quipped that she stepped down (as SYTYCD judge) so Will could compete and that she was proud of Will’s performances. With that note, Cat introduced the next performers from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy bringing in Debbie’s youngest and ‘oldest’ students- 19 kids tap dancing to “Boogie Wonderland” by the Earth, Wind and Fire. Oh, the oldest performer was- was that really Nigel Lythgoe taking the center stage? Yes it was! He was tap dancing his heart out along with the kids. It was a fun number.

Mary called for Mia Michael’s piece next starring Katee and Twitch and danced to “Mercy” by Duffy. This performance was not as sharp as when it was first performed, but it was still superb and should win Mia an Emmy. It was also, ironically, performed right after Katee’s elimination, the piece that brought Twitch to the forefront and gave him his chance to beat Will in the voting. Had this piece not been so wonderfully performed by Katee, we think Will would have lived on and Twitch would have gone home.

After some comic relief, Debbie Allen selected Twitch and Kherington‘s dance to “A New Day Had Come” by Celine Dion. This is a beautiful piece and it does show Twitch can dance, but it also clearly demonstrates his lack of ability in formal dance relative to the other performers in the competition. The lifts are strong, but strength is not dance. It helps, but it is not dance.

Nigel then called for the pair of the season, Joshua and Katee, dancing to “No Air” by Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown. This was Joshua’s and Katee’s first dance together on the show and it is one of the most memorable. It was the start of what would be the best year of these two dancers’ lives, and resulted in another standing ovation from the crowd and judges.

There was a segment on “where they are now” that was fun. It showed a number of past season dancers and was primarily a promotion for the show, but it was presented professionally.

Surprise 4

They brought performers from past seasons to refresh the audience’s memory of these great dancers. Dominic, Lauren, Travis, Ryan, Neil, Dmitri, Anya, Hok, Jaime and Benji among others came to the stage to remind us this show’s foundation is built on amazing talent. They wowed us in this set and at the end, the cast from this year joined in. This was great and had the audience going wild.

THE FINAL TWO

They then returned and crowned Joshua in the final 2 minutes of the show. Joshua and Twitch both reacted by leaping into the air, and Twitch raised Joshua’s hand in victory. Joshua’s Dad was in tears and Joshua was hugging Cat. He thanked everyone graciously, and showed he is a deserving champion.

Now, we wait for the tour and next year on SYTYCD. It was a great season with so many stunning and entertaining sets that no matter who wins, the audience always does.

Our congratulations to Joshua Allen, SYTYCD America’s Favorite Dancer!

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