How is it that sometimes listening to the doctor can be bad for you? They often make suggestions that are just downright foolish when viewed in the context of a person’s life. One doctor once advised, “Perhaps you should quit your job if it is stressing you?” The obvious response…”And who pays your bill?”
This week, a doctor severely damaged the chances of a contestant because of an injury that just would not have impeded most of her performance. And those parts that were impacted (one move in the second dance), could have been skipped letting the audience know her shoulder was injured and allowing her to show how great a competitor she really is.
But no, Ashleigh, a huge favorite both on our website and in our hearts, was told not to dance this week, despite the fact she was willing and raring to go. She popped out her shoulder but it was back in place by show time. Football players play with this injury and they take hits from three hundred pound linemen!! You don’t take a person out of the chance at making the finals because of this kind of injury. We believe she could have worked around just one move in the second dance and been fine.
And what if she did come up lame? This is a once in a lifetime chance for anyone that makes it this far. The finals are something that turn the performers into true stars. It is the superbowl of dancing. Doctors always have to be overprotective, but this is one time, the show should not have endorsed it. A doctor can advise, but that is all. If a ball player gets an injury before going into the World Series, he bandages it and sucks it up. Ashleigh was ready to do it, and we commend her. This doctor was over the top.
Ashleigh’s husband stood up after a spectacular solo, and said to vote for number 1, Ashleigh, his wife. It was touching and brought the crowd to their feet. It may save Ashleigh, but not by her abilities, which leaves us even more disappointed, because we wanted her to win with her talent..
Now, to the actual dancing.
Kathryn and Ryan – Disco – “Last Dance” (Donna Summer- Samantha Ronson remix) – choreography by Doreana Sanchez. This was an incredibly energetic dance with moves and lifts that wowed us. Both dancers were nearly perfect in every way. The only judge that disagreed thought Ryan a bit stiff, but most of the dance he was performing a major athletic feat, so that was off base. The only problem for the couple is that this dance came first, making it less memorable than the latter dances. Oh and possibly that it wasn’t as challenging as some of the performances that followed. (9/10)
Mollee and Jakob – Viennese Waltz – “Ordinary day” (Vanessa Carlson) – choreographer was Jason Gilkyson – This dance has been the kiss of death for dancers in past seasons, so it is appropriate it be thrown at Jakob. He is by far the best male dancer this season and if this doesn’t kill his chances, nothing will. It didn’t. The moves were spectacular by both dancers. Mollee was so incredibly beautiful in the dance. This waltz added a clever storyline, and it involved considerable acting ability. Mollee has that in spades. In this dance, she actually outperformed Jakob. The synchronization and moves including a forward flip by both dancers, had us in awe and we knew, they had just made the Viennese Waltz look not only easy, but phenomenal. (10/10)
Ellenore & Legacy – Contemporary – “Machine Gun” (Portishead) – choreographer: Travis Wall – Travis showed us that he always pushes himself to the limit in his choreographies. This was no different. This was a violent theme with each dancer supposed to be attempting to assassinate the other. The movements and acrobatics demonstrated superhuman capabilities on the part of Legacy. And Ellenore was no slouch. This was a truly edgy dance with some of the most dangerous and circus-like moves we have ever seen in a performance on this show. It left us in awe. The acting was great by both dancers and the sexiness of Ellenore in this dance was beyond captivating. The use of props was also incredibly well played. This was the most violent and physically challenging dance we have ever seen on this show and both dancers were incredible. (10/10)
Ashleigh and Russell – Hip Hop – “Too Much Booty 2” (Bobby J Remix) – choreographer: Shane Sparks – Because of Ashleigh’s injury, this became a solo for Russell. He had a partner, but she was not it it to win, just to fill in the best she could. But in a way, this may have helped Russell. It allowed one to completely focus on him. We often hear the judges talk about hitting hard, but Russell defines it. Every move is potent and explosive. Trick moves are slick and fun to watch. If this were purely a hip hop contest, we would give him a 10 out of 10, especially dancing a bit out of his element. But it isn’t. (9/10)
Kathryn and Ryan – Cha Cha – “Put Your Hands On Me” (Joss Stone) – Jason Gilkyson – This dance was spectacular from beginning to end. Kathryn was outrageously sexy and fluid in her movements. Ryan was sharp, strong and masculine. Our only hesitation in giving this dance 10 out of 10 is that it didn’t seem much like a Cha Cha. Much of it seemed contemporary. But the moves were so smooth, the lifts so strong and the finale so memorable that it raised the audience to their feet. (you just have to see that final move to believe it), So, we will overlook the divergence from a standard Cha Cha and gift this couple with. (10/10)
Mollee and Jakob – Broadway – “Easy Street,” From Annie (Samantha Ronson Remix) – choreographer: Joey Dowling – No doubt this couple made the finals with this dance. Mollie brought her character to life, and once again, it was easy to forget it was truly her. The theme was a con artist, experienced at his craft, drawing in an innocent and somewhat naïve girl. Mollie proved she can not only dance, she can act. Even the judges said she should go straight to Broadway. The piece also demonstrated that Jakob has a hand in the choreography of all his dances. He solves problems and enhances the dance to ensure it captivates. The moves in this piece, as usual, were outrageous, somewhat comical and fun. But the most stunning thing is we forgot we were watching Mollee and Jakob, which is the sign of a truly successful act. (10/10)
Ellenore & Legacy – Hip Hop – “People Are Strange” (The Doors) – choreographer: Tabitha & Napoleon Dumo – This started off amusing. The couple was facing backwards, but wearing masks on the back their heads that made it look like they were facing the audience. Only their feet gave them away. The first movements were so cool it got us excited this would be another great piece. From there, though, the choreography was weak. It did not challenge the couple at all, and it was a severe letdown from their first performance. It wasn’t their fault, and it demonstrates how the choreographers can lose points for the couple just as badly as they themselves. The shock power and fun of Legacy was not present, and Ellenore was not her quirky best. It wasn’t hard hitting, it was just, well, strange. (8/10)
Ashleigh and Russell– Bollywood – “Spirit of Rangeela” -from the Rangeela Soundtrack – choreographer: Nakul Dev Mahajan – This style brings back the memory of the truly amazing performance of Joshua and Katee two seasons ago. It is all synchronization. So, this was a rather awkward dance to judge. While we give Russell credit and believe the fact he can dance this style is a miracle, the substitute dancer once again was not Ashleigh. There was little synchronization in this piece, and the hand movements we love so much were not present either. This was weak. But Russell has major personality and faced a potentially disastrous event in the loss of his partner, and performed with a smile throughout, giving the dance a truly fun appeal, so we have to weigh that in the end. (9/10)
Jakob – One of the dangers for Jakob is that he could be taken for granted, because his solo is not all that different from show to show. They are all incredible. His other danger is that he comes across as too effeminate for America to embrace him. But once again, his solo was magic, except for one part that was much too feminine, and for that we give him a one point demerit. (9/10)
Mollee – We don’t believe that solos are that important. The couple dances are what we remember, and are what most strongly sways our votes. That is a good thing for Mollee, because she just wasn’t the greatest in this one. Some fantastic moves, but the overall performance may have been the weakest solo of the night. (8/10)
Legacy – There is absolutely no doubt we can only give Legacy a 10/10 in this solo. He is super human in his movements. He put on a bit of corny action with a telephone, but he was stellar. (10/10)
Ellenore – Ellenore brought the quirkiness to the stage as always and put on a great show. It wasn’t so much the moves as the performance in this instance. Even the ending was rather simplistic, but still showed off her allure and talent. (10/10)
Russell – The outfit was appropriate for the season. Russell came out as Santa Claus, and he krumped it to death. The only flaw was an accidental result of the costume. His shoes were loose and he kicked one off. Sorry Russell, it made a difference for us (9/10)
Kathryn – When Kathryn dances, it is already something wonderful to behold, but when she pushes herself to the limit of her talent (or possibly anyone’s) she is beyond imagination. She worked this solo with grace, elegance and beauty. Win win win. (10/10)
Ryan – Ryan showed his stuff in this performance. He went all out to show us how much he wants to reach the finals. He added a split and somersault, both of which are not characteristic moves for him, and demonstrated that he can pull off a few gimmick moves himself. This was his best solo of the season. It was enhanced by his look. There is no question about this man’s sexual preference. At the end he made a somewhat noble call to the audience to vote for his wife. It may save her, but we can’t honestly vote for her this week, because we did not see her perform. Leaving it to our imagination is too much to ask. Guilt and sympathy just don’t play at this house. (10/10)
This week is always difficult, but usually flaws appear in the dancers, and they kill off the performers that aren’t as diverse or perfect as the rest. We have to place Ashleigh last because she didn’t dance. If you are in a race, and you hurt your leg prior to the race and cannot run, you can’t ask them to place you in first place because you are hurt. This is a competition, if you cannot compete, whatever the circumstance, you lose.
However, the audience does not always follow our beliefs. They often play the spoiler by gifting the sympathy vote. With the work these women put in tonight, we believe they would be wrong to do so.
Finally, we don’t believe the solos mean anything in this competition, so we don’t weigh them as heavily.
Here is how we would call it.
We have Legacy and Ashleigh hitting the end of the trail. Legacy and Ellenore are surprises for us, because they had such a stellar first dance. But their second dance was mostly memorable for being so forgettable. It drew criticism not only from us, but from the judges as well. Russell and Ellenore are in danger too. They weren’t quite up to par this week. If any one else is chosen to get eliminated tomorrow, it would be a tragedy for those that performed such amazing feats this evening.
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Tonight’s show, December 8th is most crucial because it determines who will be in the FINALE next week. We’re taking the time to put in the numbers of all eight dancers for you to vote! PLEASE PICK UP THE PHONE AND VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE.
Ashleigh couldn’t dance tonight because of a shoulder injury, You may still vote for her to dance next week! – 1-888-836-7601
Jakob – “When You Say My Name by Mario Spinetti – 1-888-836-7602
Mollee – “Heartburn” by Alicia Keys – 1-888-836-7603
Legacy – “Fancy Footwork” by Chromeo – 1-888-836-7604
Ellenore – “I Got the Feelin’” by James Brown – 1-888-836-7605
Russell – “Holiday Bucness” – 1-888-836-7606
Kathryn – “Shadowfeet” by Brooke Frasier – 1-888-836-7607
Ryan – “Din Da Da” by Kevin Aviance – 1-888-836-7608