Joho the Blog » Predicting SYTYCD: Reading the judges

Predicting SYTYCD: Reading the judges

I have a prediction about who is going home tonight on So You Think You Can Dance.

I am more certain about the boy who’s leaving: Jess. I believe the judges are setting us up for this. It seemed to me that he danced fantastically last night. His second dance in particular elicited “mehs” instead of what seemed to me to be the more obvious and more fair course: His movement is so precise. His rhythm is amazing. He stayed in character and exhibited joy. He excelled in a style not his own. But not a word about his “growth,” much less having “taken us on a journey.” Instead the judges praised the slightly less strong performance by Clarice. (Note that I know I am not a dance expert.) And Nigel gave away the game when he said that Jess is unsteady in his lifts. I.e., Jess is short. Very short.

So, I think the judges (= the producers) have decided that Jess can’t make it into the Top Ten because they will not be able to keep him from getting paired with a tall girl. So, he has to go. Thus, they’re setting it up so that tonight when he dances for his life, sending him home won’t be out of the blue. (The fact that a couple of weeks ago the judges told Ryan that her dance for her life wasn’t up to their standards but they kept her anyway pretty much confirmed that the decisions about who to cut are made before and regardless of the “dance for your life” segments.)

I’m pretty sure they’re also setting us up to send Ryan home. I personally think she’s the weakest of the girls, so I’m not as bothered. They even gave her a dance last night that featured what are supposed to be her “Hollywood” good looks and didn’t use that to boost her to us viewers. I believe her goose is finally cooked. The story will be that they gave her a chance when they rescued her a couple of weeks ago and she just hasn’t come through, although they’ll put it in more new agey language about being true to herself and being in the moment.

Overall, I think this season’s Top Twenty has been amazingly strong and even. But I’m not finding the same peaks as in many other years. (For me, Brandon and Will were two mighty peaks.) If I had to pick a favorite, it’d be Sasha Mallory.

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5 Responses to “Predicting SYTYCD: Reading the judges”

  1. I’ve noticed that much of the setup has to do with which couple gets which choreographer. The favoured couples tend to get the better choreo – Tice, NappyTabs, Tony&Mel – the non-favoured tend to get the 2nd tier.

    The Canadian show (running simultaneously, but offset by a few weeks seems to have better dancers overall, more consistently strong choreographers, and more diverse experimentation with styles (e.g., first Afro-Jazz, first tapper, first crunk & dancehall, far better Latin choreo, and probably the best contemporary choreographer among all the shows, Stacey Tookey).

    Last night, there was a lot of damning with faint praise with some pretty directive voting instructions. I was disappointed with what they said about Jess – he nailed it, and he’s a strong performer (and I’m a short dancer, too, but I don’t tend to do lifts of tall women – dips yes, lifts no).

  2. I honestly don’t think the choreography this season has been nearly up to par to previous seasons. It’s possible that the choreographers are saving their best stuff for the top ten but there really hasn’t been anything all that edgy or interesting for me so far… and certainly nothing that pushes the dancers to really excel. For instance, I’m tired of seeing Jordyn do all those damn leg lifts… yeah, her control and form is amazing, and yeah she does them damn well, but it’s like hearing someone sing the same great song over and over and over again. I want to see what else she can do and the choreographers need to step it up and start really challenging the dancers.

  3. Big Sasha fan. Won’t be able to watch for a couple of weeks, but Sasha has been my favorite since the tryouts. No NY bias. :)

  4. So I’m not caught up, David (dvr awaits me) but I am just delighted to see that you’re hooked on this show too. I even like Cat – overflowing with personality and charm.

  5. Isn’t it wonderful that a dancing show gets the most comments on your blog?

    I too am a Sasha fan; now that she’s free of the ol’ partner we’re in for something amazing.

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