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SYTYCD Results Show. Was It A Woman Thing?

Joshua knew.

When Sutton Coldfield Cat announced that Katee was not going to win, Twitch draped his arm around Joshua as they walked off the stage.

Joshua didn’t drape his arm around Twitch.

Instead, he looked back around towards Katee and, I suggest, thought: “She was the best. I know she was the best. This ain’t quite right.”

Thankfully, making Josh the winner wasn’t quite wrong either.

But the baleful tossing of fifty grand in Katee’s direction suggested the producers knew they couldn’t unskew the demographics and that Katee, had, indeed, been the best.

One must offer the hearty suspicion that a large majority of the voters might well have been of the female gender and somehow they found it easier to vote for entertaining chaps.

I can’t think of any other reason that Twitch was still standing there at the end.

Why they couldn’t vote for a girl, the best girl, the best dancers all being girls, I could not possibly say. Someone suggested to me it was a weird kind of self-hate. (This was a shrink. A female shrink.)

Someone else thought it was sheer envy at the talents of other women. Who can really say? I have a gut feeling that the majority of the voters are girls between the ages of 8 and 17. And they only think about lurve, don’t they?

The producers’ throwing fifty grand into Katee’s upturned hat perhaps also reflected a touch of self-hate on their part because having a street dancer win rather helps the show’s cred on the, um, street.

Hell, let me say it, Joshua winning was better PR for a show that is now reaching for truly global pretensions.

Still, there was so much more genuine art, talent and humanity in two hours of So You Thigh You Can Dance than in a million hours of American Idol.

These people didn’t merely want to be famous. They wanted to be famous for doing what they do very, very well. And if that doesn’t at least allow your little heart to skip a beat, then please do get a job teaching tap at Gitmo.

Talking of rushes to judgment, I could not help but watch Maria twirling in her red lampshade and think far too vividly of Marie Osmond in Dancing With The Stars.

And it was utterly impossible to look at Hell’s Teeth dancing the lugubrious fandango with a bunch of kids and not be tempted to call Child Services.

Why these people feel the need to mug so incessantly for camera time when their shrieks, slithering lilts and embarrassing tilts at humor have already been the price we have paid, in advance, for watching something that actually pleases for the right reasons, is entirely beyond my cogitations.

Yes, I made that last sentence deliberately convoluted in order to describe just how much these preeners test our patience.

So what of the future for Joshua and Katee?

Dancing behind Rhianna? Even less visibly behind Beyonce?

Ah, that $250,000 should be a lot more when you think of what The Blessed Archuleta and The Sous Chef Cook might earn.

The Pond thanks Dominic’s pics for giving us a sense of finality.


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SYTYCD Final. It Has To Be Katee. Or Not.

And so we reach the end of a very pleasant skip through the long, fragrant grass of dancing.

However, last night, a couple of the poor souls looked like they were being asked to dance through the long grass wearing diving suits, masks and flippers.

I wonder whether that will have earned them more votes of sympathy than others will get votes for, um, dancing.

Hell’s Teeth, his humor tragically reminding me of Saturday afternoon British television of the 1970s, should be applauded for his absolute honesty in panning The Courtney and Joshua Slow-Mo’ Jive.

I have not seen tanks as empty as that since the Russians beat a retreat from Afghanistan. They looked like they had been asked to sleepwalk in quicksand.

One can, for once, believe reports that two of the dancers had been hospitalized to have some water shoved back into them. Courtney, who looked paler than an Albino in shock, was lucky to get through that final performance without collapsing in a weeping heap.

The only other truly sub-standard performance of the night was Twitch’s foxtrot, which bore all the resemblance of dancing by numbers.

Yet the only numbers he seemed to have been given were one and two.

On the other hand, the Dance Of The Two Black Russians was a stunning highlight. Joshua’s athleticism and Twitch’s ability to make you believe that, in his day job, he is a Mafia Bodyguard, made the whole thing a truly uplifting Ural Plural.

I haven’t mentioned Katee only because the producers did a splendid thing by showing again the moment when she was almost voted off before the Top 20 were chosen.

So thin is the line between confidence and surrender that it has been easy to forget just what state she was in before the Final 20 took the stage.

If talent is the sole criterion by which America’s Ephemeral Voting Kingdom decides on the winner, there surely cannot be any doubt that Katee didn’t merely steal last night’s show. She bought it with some spare change she found lying around in her pocket.

Grace, athleticism, character performance, they were all there. And her real talent is to combine precision with inspiration.

No mean feet, as they say in dancing. (Well, they will now.)

So all y’all voted for Twitch, right?

Ah, well. I still have my memories and you can’t take them away from me.

The Pond thanks South Tyrolean for letting is know exactly where we are.


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SYTYCD. So Farewell Then, Mark And Chelsie.

Hello there, Courtney, and er, Twitch. Life’s absurd, isn’t it?

As are the fickle feelings of the general public.

Was justice done? Not exactly.

But at the very least what we got from So You Thigh You Can Dance this week was dignity.

And we should be so, so grateful for that.

Chelsie, bless her dear boyish soul, was undone only by her gender.

To my untutored eyes, she participated in the two most memorable pieces of the whole series: the one in which Mark was more interested in reading the Wall Street Journal and making money than in her desperate and despairing allure, and the one in which her hair resembled the aftermath of Armageddon while she fought Twitch over a bright green baton.

And how symbolic that was. No one can persuade me, and please, please do try, that Twitch was more versatile, more polished, more inspirational or more uplifting, or even a better dancer than the pugnacious Ms. Hightower.

Chelsie showed a delightful combination of brass, class and ass. And I mean that in the most elegant of paradigms.

As the tears reluctantly streamed down her face like folks who had just learned their favorite band would not be playing an encore, one could only admire the disarming charm with which she swallowed her injustice whole.

Mark handled his departure with more grace than any airline in the 21st century.

Not merely by uttering required words of how much he had learned, grown and suffered, but with a serenity on his face which communicated quite clearly that there were bigger things in life than losing on some TV dance show.

One can only hope that these two will somehow find a way to be noticed in the future and do not disappear to the rear of some pre-packed troupe somewhere west of Cleveland.

That leaves us with three who can win and lovely ‘ole Twitch. Although one must begin to seriously consider where his fan base has come from. Is there something sneaky in his use of oversized glasses? Perhaps some devious agents have, on his behalf, enlisted blind and short-sighted groups to continuously vote him through.

If you take this week’s vote as communicating anything, you might choose to wonder whether there has been a tsunami of support for the humongously cuddly Courtney.

Are we in the presence of some Courtney Love?

I know that those veterans who understand these things believe that this is a fight between Joshua and Katee.

But personality is looming larger as the competition reaches its dying act.

Of course, given that there are Idolish people involved here, I will ask this question but once.

Who do the producers want to win?

Please answer with your appropriate reasoning.

Thank you.

The Pond thanks Jurek D (Away) for cremaking us all cry.

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SYTYCD. So farewell then, Twitch and Courtney.

Oh, it’s just a headline. Well, perhaps not.

The truth is, I did find myself quite moved by last night’s So You Thigh You Can Dance dancing kings and queens.

So much effort, so little pretense, and, this morning, no memory at all of what any of the judges said.

This feels healthy.

For me, Twitch was the weakest. Yet, who knows, perhaps he has a huge fan club out there of people who wear large glasses.

Yet one has a sense that his fan club is not quite as big as Mark’s. Which means that Twitch seems the most likely to walk the dancing plank. As Joshua actually danced. Really danced. Danced impressively. With verve, nerve and swerve.

Oh, please let me be honest for a moment. I don’t really care all that much about the boys. They’re all really quite nice. They’re all triers who have squeezed the very most out of what they have.

The girls, though, well, that’s a little different.

I really feel that justice would be served by allowing Katee to  play the male parts next week. Or perhaps the three remaining girls could take it in turns.

Because if we really are choosing the top four dancers, they would be Joshua and the Three Degrees of Heat.

Unfortunately there will be One Degree of Separation tonight.

My fear is that it will be Courtney. Perhaps because, oh, I don’t know, she seems slightly less technically polished than the other two.

But I don’t want her to go. Couldn’t we elevate Mark to the judging panel, replacing Teethy? I mean, Mark has an intimate knowledge of all of the dancers, so his critique would surely be suitably pointed.

I know I am clutching at long gone hay here, but there’s a certain sadness at the thought of any of the girls leaving.

So, please forgive the headline. It was written in sadness, not knowledge.

Still, you don’t really think any of the men should win, do you?

The Pond thanks Peter Kaminski for expressing things so perfectly.


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SYTYCD Final Eight Shock. Don’t Blame Calista Flockhart’s Mother.

And so we live through the pain again.

The pain of allowing real people out there to break hearts as they break wind. With no thought as to who might laugh, who might cry and who might die of asphyxiation.

On this week’s So You Thigh You Can Dance, justice and injustice held hands and stroked each other like a policeman and a drug dealer in an especially tense French thriller.

Comfort is lovely. But Comfort was done. Just as she was done before. Would Kherington have done any better? Who can say? Yet few could argue that the viewers’ eyes did not take a vacation in Bermuda.

However, with the chaps, it would be reasonable to say (and we’re not necessarily here to be reasonable) that the viewers may have listened to the Pond a little too literally.

Yes, I asked all y’all to vote with your hearts. This did not mean that you were supposed to shut your eyelids while your eyes rolled down your bodies, along the floor, out to the patio to roll around on your hammock.

As I believe I mentioned when I first wafted helplessly into the pheromones of this show, Will was trying so hard to be perfect that he was failing to connect with the audience.

What was striking is that he really didn’t connect with either of his partners over the last two weeks.

Somehow, half way through each performance, he moved his eyes away in order, seemingly, to focus on the perfect arc his right arm was describing, almost as if that arm held such descriptive awe that it really was the ghost of Tim Russert, or the reincarnation of Lenny Bruce.

Yet here was the injustice.

Will’s James Brown solo showed all the wit, verve and abandon that his other dances simply didn’t.

If the solos are there to be judged, and if the ultimate aim is to find the best single dancer, then Will did not deserve to be extradited.

Mark, Joshua and Twitch were all fortunate.

And Calista Flockhart’s mom, who joined a Tia-less Maria and a tirelessly witless Teethy on the judging panel, was sharply honest in trying to point that out.

Twitch really didn’t have to do a whole lot of dancing in Tia’s quite fabulous dramatization of the Bobbit relationship. He performed it well. He danced very little.

But he emoted far too much, perhaps, when he discovered he might be in the bottom two. Turning away from the camera and squatting like an unhappy rabbit seemed just a little unnecessary. It was, however, pleasantly honest.

Mark was perhaps even more fortunate to get away with his misfortune. Not only was he asked to partner Comfort, but he then frantically tried to keep up with Napoleon and Josephine’s schoolboy routine and then dance something that may have been a foxtrot. Or a deertrot. Or a squirreltrot.

Mark, I am suspecting, has endeared himself sufficiently to those out there to have the largest remaining fan base. Perhaps he will suddenly have the blind fortune to draw Katee next week. That might make for a very interesting and, perhaps, expository evening.

And what of Joshua? Perhaps it is my naivete, but, again, his strength seemed to be his strength. And his slight weakness appeared to be his dancing. He seemed at times to be finding it hard to match Chelsie’s precision and verve. It was almost as if he was putting in so much effort that his body was trying too hard.

If that is not a tautologous tautology.

Whatever one might think of this show, and I am clinging to my joy at its essential honesty, there is still so much genuine talent remaining that one can only hope the performers have sufficient energy remaining to deliver something truly inspiring in the two weeks that remain.

Personally, I would very much like to see, at the very minimum, the return of Lil’C and Calista Flockhart’s mom.

Both could guide the viewers just enough to prevent further injustices being rained down on our fragile emotions.

Life is hard and the world is rough.

But if you want to boogie, children, you have to get tough.

I just made that up.

The Pond thanks Guylaine2007 for capturing a dog named Boogie.


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SYTYCD Top Ten Results Show. The Moe-ment An Ego Spun Out Of Control.

Have these words ever come out of your mouth: “Did he have to? Did he really have to?”

Sometimes people do things that you know they are going to do, even though, simultaneously, you know they are going to show that part of themselves that everyone suspected was there and no one wanted to see.

So it was last night, that Hell’s Teeth, a man who has singularly redeemed himself by bringing So You Thigh You Can Dance to television, a show that is everything its ugly sister, American Idol, is not, inspired the words: “Did he have to?”

For those of you who flip through your TIVO as fast as Sienna Miller flips through ineligible chaps, Nigel Lythgoe, producer and, er, producer, of two successful Fox shows, decided to surprise everyone by choreographing a routine for the five remaining eligible chaps.

Can I possibly sound fair when I suggest that the routine was as wooden as Pinocchio’s nose?

Possibly not. But can I sound accurate? I can only hope so.

At least Idol’s Randy Jackson limits himself to declaring that he played bass or fourteenth fiddle on the seminal works of Whitney Houston and Journey.

He doesn’t write the contestants a song and let them hope that it’s better than Simon and Garfunkel.

Nigel Lythgoe, on the other hand, not only choreographed (allegedly) a routine based on Five Guys named Moe, but he then ordered his, um hostess, Cat Deeley, to withhold this fact from the audience, lest the facts swayed their enthusiasm.

One assumes he was afraid that, should the information have come out in advance, the audience would have not been able to control their positive emotions throughout the dance.

Better to let them know afterwards, when, as it happened, the faces of Joshua and Will muttered the thought: “Jeez, I’m glad that’s over with.”

However, it was the face of Mr. Lythmoe that really clipped my duodenum with gherkin acid.

The pride of the insecure has not been more clearly seen since Julia Roberts gushed a fountain of self-vindication on receiving an Oscar.

Mr. Lythmoe was Julia Roberts and Sally Field put together. In mime.

The firmness that his lips adopted in order not to slide down his teeth and mouth and say: “I am. Really I am. I am as good as this lot. See,” was a feat in human engineering.

It seemed as if sitting next to renowned choreographers every week has preyed upon Mr. Lythmoe’s sense of self.

Yet if he really felt the need to dangle his credentials alongside his comments of dubious taste, then he should have decided to be a regular choreographic contributor (oh, God, no, that’s not his Plan, is it?).

Then everyone would have happily judged his abilities next to those of Tia, Maria, Napoleon, Josephine and the rest.

As it is, Mr. Lythmoe resembled nothing more than a man in a bar who grabs the karaoke mike near the end of the evening when all the customers are drunk beyond veracity.

The drunk’s reasoning is that it doesn’t matter whether his singing is comprised of deleterious atoms thrust into the torpid air because everyone will applaud at the end.

Most people would be satisfied with bringing one of the most honest, uplifting, artistic and joyous shows to television.

But no. Mr. Lythmoe had to find a way to say: “See, I can do this too.”

The saddest thing is that, despite his shoulders hunching up to support his head just in case it began to swell, all he proved was that perhaps it isn’t a wise idea to add moe strings to his boe.

The Pond thanks jnterwin for capturing a betoothed one being reined in.

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