Category Archives: So You Think You Can Dance

Why I Think SYTYCD Has Jumped the Shark

The Shark Has Been Jumped

I halfheartedly watched So You Think You Can Dance tonight and am feeling decidedly meh about the whole thing.

Why? Well, I hate to admit it, but I think my fave reality show has officially jumped the shark.

For those of you unfamiliar with the origin of this term (ahem, Chad), take a look at this clip from Happy Days circa 1977.

Yes, that’s Arthur Fonzarelli, and yes, he’s literally jumping over a shark while waterskiing. And wearing a leather jacket. This single episode turned a corner for the series–from good to lame. It’s a TV phenomenon, and it’s a rare series that can avoid jumping the shark at some point or another.

So, how does SYTYCD fit into this? Wikipedia has a good list of “Jumping the Shark” categories. Based on these, here’s my take:

  • Exit…Stage Left. When Mia Michaels resigned as a guest choreographer and judge, fans were concerned with good reason. Mia’s “I’m not here to make friends” criticism stood head and shoulders above her co-judges, and her choreography always evoked the most emotion in both the dancers and the viewers. It’s a shame she’s gone.
  • Moving the main characters from their familiar surroundings to a new setting, such as a new home or even a new town. Fancy new stage with weird back projection images behind the dancers (Look! It’s the Taj Mahal and they’re doing a Bollywood dance!), and a new boot-off regimen.
  • Special guest star. Yes, this was last season, but I have yet to shake the memory of Katie Holmes hoofing it on a soundstage while warbling “Get Happy”.
  • A very special…This season started with a very special “it doesn’t count” episode where every dancer showed off his or her own specialty. Meh.
  • New kid in town. Adam Shankman isn’t officially a “new” kid, but he’s now a permanent judge, turning the rotating panel into a static Mary/Nigel/Adam combo.

Now, I’m not totally giving up on the show yet, but if Napoleon and Tabitha have a baby or if Ted McGinley makes a guest appearance, I’m out.

kp

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Let’s Dance

Addicted to SYTYCD

Addicted to SYTYCD

Tomorrow night I’m going to join thousands of squealing girls (and a few dozen guys) at the touring show of So You Think You Can Dance at the Air Canada Centre. This tour features the top 10 (technically the top 12 because Nigel threw Phillip Chbeeb a bone) from season five–you know, the one that ran right before So You Think You Can Dance Canada, which is running concurrently with season six of the American version.

I hate to admit that I feel a bit confused when I strain my memory to remember the standout dances from…July. What happened again?

I definitely remember the “breast cancer dance“, the “locket dance“, and the “addiction dance“, but what were the other standouts?

Guess I’ll be pleasantly reminded tomorrow night. Any predictions before then?

kp

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Good thing I’m on vacation this week

Top 16 Bust a Move

Top 16 Bust a Move

It’s been an action-packed 24 hours, so this post is a bit of a hodgepodge.

In no particular order, here are the highlights.

1) We are the proud owners of the newly released Beatles anthology (Stereo). Since The Beatles: Rockband landed on our doorstep several weeks ago for Chad to review, we’ve been living in a modern-day Beatlemania. The kiddo is offically obsessed with The Beatles, and insists on singing as “John” all the time. Funny, I seem to remember calling dibs on that when the game was first announced, but my four year old somehow muscled her way in. She has about 10 songs down pat, and basically wants us to play them over and over again. Lots of “Yellow Submarine”, “Octopus’ Garden”, “Hello, Goodbye”, “And My Bird Can Sing”, and her all time fave “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band.” The game is fantastic–I highly recommend it. Oh, and the 45th song is “Let it Be” “All You Need is Love” (oops).

So, to add to our Beatledom, Chad picked up the completely remastered box set of all of The Beatles’ albums. I’m fully expecting her teacher to report that she is leading the class in singalongs of “Altogether Now”.

Which leads me to point number two:

2) The kid started Junior Kindergarten today. I painstakingly picked out an outfit, did her hair, and packed her backpack. I took photos, shot video of her getting out of the car, and walked her into her class with my heart in my mouth. She then ran to the rug for circle time and barely waved as I walked out of the room. It was probably the least dramatic JK initiation in the history of JK. Tomorrow she starts her second JK class. I’m guessing it will be about as traumatic as today’s. All good news.

Finally…

3) Last night I got to go to a taping of So You Think You Can Dance Canada. It was the boot-off episode (it’s called “elimination episode” in polite circles), so much shorter than the dance taping. It was a great experience, and makes me eat some of my “it’s a boring season” words. Seeing something live is always more exciting and dramatic than on TV. It’s also a real wakeup call in regards to how incredibly young these dancers are. I was surrounded by students at the dance school where Jenna Lynn (the girl who was eliminated last night). They were devistated when she got kicked off and it was a bit heart wrenching to see her cry onstage. She’s 18. I don’t even want to think about what I was like when I was 18.

A few other notes: Jean Marc is really wee. So small. Tre Armstrong is drop dead gorgeous. Leah Miller looks better in real life than on TV and was wearing a stunning dress last night. Nicolas shouldn’t have been booted off–his solo was even better in person than on TV. And finally, TV really is magic. The stage is actually tiny, and the crowd wasn’t huge, but watching it on TV later, I marvelled at the clever camera work used to make the studio look gigantic and the crowd massive.

Overall, a great show. Thanks to Rene S. for helping me get tickets.

I’ve got to run. The kid is now performing “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” using a Light Sabre as a microphone, and needs me to back her up with a tambourine. Good thing I’m on vacation this week.

kp

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Quinoa is Keen

Mmmmm....Quinoa-y

Mmmmm....Quinoa-y

Since Chad’s surgery (read http://gutless.posterous.com if you’re not up to speed), he’s had a hard time eating protein. It’s been five months since he’s had his stomach removed, and we’re still figuring out how to eat as a family–between a stomachless husband and a picky 4 year old, I’m either eating leftovers for days or throwing food out.

Last week we had dinner with friends, and Chad was able to eat a quinoa salad without any difficulty, so I made one for him tonight. It gives him the protein he needs and seems to go down smoothly. It was also delicious. Here’s the recipe I used, if you’re interested–I got it from www.savvyvegetarian.com.

Easy Vegan Quinoa Salad

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup snow peas, shell peas, celery, or green beans (I used shell peas)
  • 1 – 2 small carrots, peeled and sliced thin
  • 1/2 green or red pepper, sliced thin (I used a red pepper)
  • 1 medium ripe tomato
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, cilantro, or basil (I used basil)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted sunflower seeds or toasted cashews (I skipped this)
  • Options: Chopped scallions, dried unsweetened cranberries, raisins or apricots, Greek olives, minced jalapeno pepper, fresh mint (I also skipped this)

Dressing:

  • 2 Tblsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Options: Pinch of cayenne, garlic powder or fresh minced garlic, minced fresh or dried ginger

Quinoa Salad Directions

  1. The quinoa can be made ahead of time and refrigerated if you like
  2. Soak the quinoa 15 minutes in cold water
  3. Rinse thoroughly, pour off most of the water and drain through a large fine mesh strainer
  4. Place in 2 qt pot with the water, salt and oil
  5. Bring to a boil
  6. Turn the heat down to very low, cover and cook for 15 minutes
  7. Remove from heat and allow to sit five minutes with lid on
  8. Fluff gently with a fork and set aside to cool. Setting the pan in a sink full of cold water cools quickly.
  9. Steam the carrots and green veg for 5 minutes, rinse in cold water
  10. Chop the tomatoes, herb and cucumber
  11. Blend dressing ingredients with a whisk or shake in a jar
  12. Gently combine veggies, walnuts, quinoa and dressing in a large bowl
  13. Cover and chill

Delish.

Oh, and if you’re wondering, I have no opinion on the kick-off episode of So You Think You Can Dance Canada, as I missed it. I don’t know about you, but I rarely consider tuning into anything at 7:30pm. Terrible time for a show. Terrible.

kp

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So You Think You Can Snore

Season Two Starts With a Whimper

Season Two Starts With a Whimper

As I mentioned a few weeks back, I’m kind of obsessed with the SYTYCD franchise, so I was pretty excited tonight for the first episode of the Canadian competition. Unfortunately, it disappointed. Apart from Blake, who gave some tough love, the whole judging panel seemed to be there to simply justify putting the top 20 on the stage. They praised the sucky and rewarded the boring. Blech.

One more sticking point: enough with the cheap costumes, Canadian producers. The bunchy, pantyhose-inlaid samba costume worn by the girl who couldn’t pull off the lift in the second dance was the most budget thing I’ve ever seen. Costumes at my 4 year old’s ballet recital were more professional looking than that.

Pull up your socks, SYTYCD Canada. I’m fickle and I will turn on you.

Am I alone in this?

kp

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Dance Fever


SYTYCD Canada is back

SYTYCD Canada is back

In my long, sordid and fickle love affair with reality TV, my relationship with the So You Think You Can Dance franchise has blossomed into something meaningful. And kind of obsessive.

I watch a lot of TV, but almost nothing as it airs. My husband and I are into watching full seasons at a time on DVD, so everything we watch is a season behind, but the one exception is SYTYCD. I truly love this show, and am ecstatic that only a week after the end of Season Five of the American version, the Canadian version is on the air.

So if you know who I’m talking about when I throw down names like Twitch, Ade, Nico, Benji, Janeane, Sabra, and NappyTabs, or if you practically start crying when you hear songs like “Bleeding Love” “This Woman’s Work” or “No Air”, then check in here on Tuesdays and Wednesdays over the next few months.

I don’t know anything about dance, but I know everything about SYTYCD.

Let the Canadian competition begin.

kp

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