Anyhoo, here are my thoughts on the routines tonight.
- Sabra (solo) - Eh, not bad, but didn't do anything special for me. I mean, it was good, but didn't grab me.
- Lacey/Pasha (hip-hop) - Good. Okay, really good. I thought it was an interesting routine and that they danced it well. My one criticism is that they weren't together very well when dancing together. (Last week, Neil and Lacey were much better in sync.)
- Lauren/Danny (contemporary) - First off, I'm sorry Danny for (a) having to dance with her and (b) ewwww, she kissed you. EEEWWWWWWWWW! Uhm, why the FUCK was she wearing that cheesy-ass, craptastic grin through the whole damn routine?!?! WHY!?!?!? Gawd, she bugs so much. I didnt really like it. It was just them throwing themselves around and I felt absolutely NO connection. None, like zero, at all ... and as a proud Celine Dion fan, that is one of my favorite songs EVER by her and I can't believe it was wasted on Lauren. Yet again, Danny, I'm sorry.
- Pasha (solo) - Uhm, eh. It was okay. Not bad, but didn't do anything for me. Like at all.
- NEIL!/Sabra (jazz) - As far as I'm concerned Mandy Moore and Diana Torres are the choreographers of this season and this routine is why the former is so. I LOVED it. It was a brilliant concept that was brilliantly executed by Moore and brilliantly danced by these two. I thought they had a great connection, hit it hard and beautifully. The whole shebang of stuff over/under the table was AWESOME!! Just awesome. Neil's gymnastic skills were put to good use in conjunction with his dance and but for a section after the double pirouette (Neil's was a tad tighter and a half rotation longer than Sabra's, I think) they were nicely in sync and got back in sync fairly quickly. Just outstanding. I LOVED. It was the first routine I watched twice.
- Lauren (solo) - Dude, she was totally dancing too fast for the music. Dipshit. And wearing her cheesy-ass, craptastic grin. Blechhhh! (Okay, there was that one sorta sideways spin move that was really pretty, but that's the ONLY positive you're gonna drag out of me.)
- Lacey/Pasha (smooth waltz) - Beautifully executed; they looked and danced beautifully. My one tiny criticism is that I didn't think they had any chemistry, but the flow was absolutely gorgeous and in a waltz is essential and the movements were just wonderfully done. Brava!
- NEIL! (solo) - Okay, if I had never been for Neil before now, this solo would have done it for me for one reason and one alone. I don't know if I've ever actually written this down in any write-up of the show over the last two seasons or if I've only thought it EVERY. SINGLE. TIME I watch a solo. They all HAVE to know by now that the SYTYCD theme is thrown at the end of EVERY SINGLE music piece they select. They have to know and I always ask myself as they fumble through those last few seconds because of that additional music why the hell NO ONE ever actually choreographs something that flows from THEIR routine to cover that part of the music, as if you know it's part of the music they'll be dancing to ... since it IS part of the music that they will be dancing to. *
* I could be wrong and others have done this before and I just totally missed it due to their crappy choreography not making it obvious.
AND NEIL DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He choreographed a bit CLEARLY that was intended to flow from his musical choice into that SYTYCD theme fitting the beats perfectly. I actually sat up in shock and literally shouted, "OH MY GOD! HE DID IT!!!" and then I rewound it again and again to see ... and yup, HE ACTUALLY DID IT!!!!!!!!! And it looked a million times better than every other solo routine ending on this show ever because the music was expected and choreographed to accordingly. Thank you, Neil.
Ahem, as for the rest of it. I liked. Didn't love, but I liked it better than the others thus far. Of course, I'm a Neil-girl, so that could be my bias talking. I admit that freely. But that end, those last few seconds? You rock, Neil!!!!
- Danny/Lauren (disco) - That? Was HORRIBLE!! Possibly THE worst dance I've ever seen on this show. Seriously. Remember Lacey and Pasha's smooth waltz where every move flowed into every other move with grace and beauty, without thought, just naturally? Imagine the exact opposite. Or just watch this routine. Seriously. You could see them thinking through every single move before they started on another. Again, there was no connection. The lifts looked tentative, Dipshit wore that cheesy-ass, craptastic grin. And the death drop? Tentative and oh, Dipshit, used her HAND to push herself up from the floor. That's not how you rise from a death drop!!! No, no, no, no, nooooooooooooooo. My mother frickin' taught Disco. Ugh!!! That was horrible. And sadly, most of the above commentary reflects on Danny too. The boy tried I'm sure, but stuck with the partner from hell who is clearly unable to establish a connection with any dancer, and a style he's obviously not comfortable in? Yeah, this was not a good dance. At all.
Wrote the above before listening to the judges' comments. Clearly they are all on crack. Heavy, heavy, HEAVY doses of crack.
- Lacey (solo) - GO LACEY!!! She did it too!!!! TWO IN ONE NIGHT!!!!!!!!!! She and Neil actually flippin' choreographed for the SYTYCD theme. Good job. Okay, much, much, much better than last week (obviously). It was better than the others (except for Neil, sorry, I'm a Neil-girl), but I didn't like the sticking-butt out part and sections of it felt like one-half of a swing routine without a partner. Still it was very good, and had more style and pizzazz than anyone else's. (I just liked Neil's better.)
- NEIL!/Sabra (paso doble) - I'm going to honest. Until the ending, I thought it was very good, but nothing stand-out. I mean, they both sold their parts well (Neil actually oversold it a bit here and there), they did have great eye contact, nice crisp movement, but again, you could see them thinking through a few moves. But that ending? KICKED ASS!!!!! I actually thought it ended at first when the lights dimmed and that part I loved, so I rewound to watch it. Rewatched it and it continued with her falling down his body in that hold and then I frickin' LOVED it!!! And then, and then ... how they carried the performance all the way through over to Cat with Neil dragging her across, then pulling her up and the whole thing. Just awesome. That kick-ass ending elevated it from a very good to a KICK-ASS AWESOME!!! Loved that ending. I don't care if the final drop wasn't perfect, I still loved it.
Commenting on comments -- I did love Neil's, "this is the first time I've been on the train." Heeheehee!! Loved that. One other thing, it was really, really, really nice seeing Neil with a partner he really connected with. For the first time standing up there while listening to commentary, it came across as if Neil was listening to the comments WITH someone as opposed to just listening to them while standing next to someone.
- Danny (solo) - It was good, but I was already power-voting for Neil (and getting through every time, sniff, sniff) that I can't honestly give an opinion. I'm sure it was wonderful. It was Danny. He's just not Neil for me.
Arrrgghh, I can't believe I have to wait until Monday to hear that my beloved Neil is cut. Waaaahhh!!!
So who do I think is going home? Obviously, Neil (waaaaahhhh!!!) and Lauren (YAY!!!!!!!!!!!). Aside from my bias, really based on tonight's dancing, I don't know who should go home: Danny or Pasha, but I'd lean more towards Danny. Neil -- again based solely on tonight -- should really, really be the only one definitely who's staying. And, of course, he'll go home. But it was lovely even hearing Nigel say that Neil could win. Sigh.