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Time Stamps for “Vegas Week”
0:00 – Introduction
1:18 – The cuts during Vegas Week
13:36 – The major narratives of Vegas Week – Alexa Anderson and Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer
19:14 – Standouts during Vegas Week
22:34 – MIA dancers during Vegas Week
25:30 – Wrap-up
Episode Length of “Vegas Week”: 28:38
Time Stamps for “Meet the Top 20”
0:00 – Introduction
1:33 – First contemporary routine by Tyce DiOrio: Alexa Anderson, George Lawrence II, Will Thomas, and Amber Jackson
3:57 – Ballroom routine by Jason Gilkinson: Nick Bloxsom-Carter, Witney Carson, and Lindsay Arnold
6:15 – Ballet routine by Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden: Eliana Girard, Daniel Baker, and Chehon Wespi-Tschopp
8:36 – Jazz routine by Sonya Tayeh: Tiffany Maher, Audrey Case, and Janelle Issis (not in routine)
10:18 – Second contemporary routine by Stacey Tookey: Matthew Kamierczak, Dareian Kujawa, Janaya French, and Amelia Lowe
12:19 – “Mixed” routine by Chris Scott: Cole Horibe, Brandon Mitchell, Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer
14:14 – Top 10 girls routine by Travis Wall
15:35 – Top 10 guys routine by Sonya Tayeh
16:59 – Top 20 routine by Mia Michaels
18:36 – Wrap-up
Episode Length of “Meet the Top 20”: 20:07
Wedding planning has consumed a lot of our time, but we’re finally here with our “Vegas Week” and “Meet the Top 20” podcasts! We apologize for the erratic and delayed release schedule, and ask for your patience as we find time to record and edit these.
The “Vegas Week” and “Meet the Top 20” episodes have transitioned us from the audition portion of the show into the live competition. We found ourselves unsatisfied with Vegas Week, as many of our early favorites were cut, most notably Mariah Spears. The insistence of the producers to make a narrative out of the Vegas Week process for Alexa Anderson and Cyrus “Glitch” Spencer also did not sit well with us, as this not only smacked of favoritism, but it also consumed so much television time that we barely saw the full routines for the different genre rounds.
We enjoyed the “Meet the Top 20” episode much more, as the remaining contestants that made it through the Green Mile are the ones we would have selected. The actual routines were quite good, with the routine by Chris Scott being a standout. Already we have some people we are excited for, including Cole Horibe and Witney Carson, and we also worry about the longevity of some contestants, such as Tiffany Maher, Audrey Case, and Janaya French. Finally, we urge the producers and choreographers to take care with how they place and feature Alexa Anderson. Between the Vegas Week episode and the choices in the Travis and Mia Michaels routines, we’re concerned that she will experience a huge backlash from the fanbase, very similar to Ryan from last season. Overall, we’re excited for the final cast of contestants and cannot wait to see the first live show tonight!
Let us know what you think after listening to the podcast! We’ve partnered with Pure So You Think You Can Dance to deliver this series of podcasts, so check them out and interact with fellow SYTYCD fans! You can leave us a comment on Pure SYTYCD, on this blog, or tweet us. You can also visit our Facebook page and leave a comment there! We love feedback and will respond either with a comment or in our next published show.
For the finale of So You Think You Can Dance season 8 we give you a super-sized podcast with 15 more minutes of content. We were happy with Melanie’s win and were pleasantly surprised that the top two dancers this season were both women, which has not happened before on this program. The performance episode was not up to the high standards of past seasons which was disappointing for us, but there were some highlights such as Marko and Lauren F.’s wonderful contemporary piece by Tessandra Chavez and the captivating performance by Melanie and Sasha in the second Stacey Tookey routine of the night.
The results show reminded us of many of the great routines from the season, although we were surprised by how the judges picks seemed to place less emphasis on everyone except for Melanie, Marko and Sasha (even Tadd only had one non-group routine repeated). This portion of the show has historically served as a warm-up for the forthcoming tour and features many of the routines that are expected to show up. But here we had many routines that involved all-stars, none of which will likely be on the tour. It was unexpected for the judges picks to lack variety.
We conclude the podcast with a discussion of the show’s production and the effect it’s having on the pacing and the way we get to know the dancers. We pinpoint that the approach towards the show changed in season 6, when they moved to the live show format. At this point the packages became shorter and contained more schtick and the judges comments started having less substance due to the time constraints of a live program. We also discuss the choreographers and that some of them tailor their work to their selected dancers and that others do not and whether this is a fair way of doing things. Finally, we discuss the variety of dancers in the top 20 in later seasons versus the early seasons and the effect this seems to have on the type of choreography we see each week.
We want to thank everyone that has tuned into our podcasts during the course of the season! We’ve enjoyed doing this and its been a learning experience for us! We’re planning to do podcasts for season 9 of So You Think You Can Dance, so check back with us in May 2012. We’re going to continue doing our Big Brother podcasts and will be adding The X-Factor to our weekly discussions when it premieres on September 21st. We are also adding a Week in Review podcast in the fall for all the other shows we watch during that time. So if any of that sounds interesting to you, then keep coming back to Reflections on Pop Entertainment and check out our updates. If you’re only interested in our So You Think You Can Dance material, we’ll see you again next summer!
Please let us know your thoughts by dropping us a comment on Pure So You Think You Can Dance after listening.
Episode Length: 44:53
0:00 – Introduction: Congrats to Melanie! Guest judges: Katie Holmes and Kenny Ortega and the choice to have celebrity judges
2:37 – Melanie and Marko’s disco
4:15 – Sasha and Mark’s jazz
5:44 – Tadd and Joshua’s hip-hop
7:10 – Melanie and Robert’s contemporary
8:29 – Sasha and Marko’s broadway
10:46 – Sasha and Tadd’s chacha
12:57 – Marko and Lauren F.’s contemporary
14:36 – Tadd and Melanie’s jazz
16:01 – Melanie and Sasha’s contemporary
18:27 – Marko and Tadd’s gumboot stepping
20:28 – The order of the placing: 2 girls in the top
22:22 – Results show: The new top 20 routine and tap routine
24:28 – Results show: The judges picks were stacked towards Melanie, Sasha and Marko and didn’t seem to be a retrospective of the season
28:58 – Post-season discussion: The direction of production and how it affects the show – pacing in live shows vs recorded shows, an increasing focus on the judging panel, choreographers tailoring their work to the dancers, variety in the dancers in the Top 20 (stacked towards contemporary/jazz now), variety in routine genres (less ballroom now, more contemporary/jazz)
42:34 – Wrap-up: What are your thoughts on our post-season discussion? What we’re going to be doing in future podcasts (Big Brother, The X-Factor, Week in Review)
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Wrapping up the first half of the competition brought a satisfying conclusion to some partnerships while others seemed to run out of steam and were in need of a change. The bottom 3 was relatively uncontroversial as was the elimination of Ryan and Alexander. As we discuss in the podcast, we believe the judges inadvertently set Ryan up for failure by refusing to give her constructive criticism early on in the show, which generated a fan backlash that landed the Ryan/Ricky partnership in the bottom on three separate occasions. Alexander, while never being in the bottom before, hasn’t been consistent in his ability to emote compared to the other remaining guys and this is likely why the judges sent him home.
We enjoyed the Jordan/Tadd Travis Wall piece, both of Melanie/Marko’s routines and Jess’ performance in the Christopher Scott hip-hop was the surprise of the night. We’re looking forward to mixing up the couples and the were very happy with the returning all-stars! This should rejuvenate the competition and break some of the remaining dancers out of their comfort zones and further their growth.
Please let us know your thoughts by dropping us a comment on Pure So You Think You Can Dance after listening!
Episode Length: 32:48
0:00 – Introduction: Thoughts for Alex Wong, Emmy nominations and guest judges
4:11 – Bottom 3 couples overview
4:57 – Bottom 3: Caitlynn and Mitchell
7:36 – Bottom 3: Ryan and Ricky
11:45 – Bottom 3: Sasha and Alexander
14:27 – The elimination of Ryan and Alexander
16:38 – Performance night: Jordan and Tadd – Great Travis piece and strong opinions about using “Out Tonight” from RENT
21:32 – Performance night: Melanie and Marko – Wonderful conclusion to a great partnership
24:12 – Performance night: Jess and Clarice – Jess nailed that hip-hop piece!
27:35 – Next week’s all-stars! Melody, Allison, Comfort, Chelsie, Kathryn, Pasha, Twitch, Brandon, Robert
31:37 – Wrap-up: Leave us a comment, visit our blog to see what else we’re doing and we’re really excited to see Harry Potter this weekend!
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