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‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Eliminations: What The Frig?

Lyndsey Parker
Reality Rocks

What a bizarre So You Think You Can Dance elimination episode it was this evening. Where do I begin?

First of all, after somehow escaping being in the bottom three couples over the past few weeks when awkwardly dancing in unfamiliar genres like the tango and Broadway, breakdancer Phillip finally got to do a hip-hop routine last night--and I'm talking an AMAZING hip-hop routine, complete with Tabitha & Napoleon choreography and a very cleverly used S&M chain prop. And yet, THIS was the week when Phillip and his partner Jeanine inexplicably ended up on the chopping block. What the frig? If there was any night when Phillip deserved to be safe, tonight was the night.

Second, Kupono, my favorite male dancer this season, and Kayla, the judges' clear favorite female, performed what I considered to be last night's hands-down best routine (Sonya Tayeh's sexy/scary vampire-themed contemporary masterpiece). Yet they too landed in the bottom three couples this evening.

And finally, last night newly paired-off couple Vitolio and Karla took on the most difficult style in all of So You Think You Can Dance, the quickstep, and they completely pulled it off and were roundly praised by the judges. And yet, they also didn't get enough votes to be safe tonight.

While the judges were unanimous in their two elimination verdicts this evening, I have no idea how they were able to come to any sort of decision, unless they just flipped a coin or pulled unlucky dancers' names out of a hat. This was especially true of the three at-risk males. Phillip, Vitolio, or Kupono--what a Sophie's choice!

I felt all three males delivered great dance-for-your-life solos, although judge Nigel Lythgoe complained that Phillip's seemed "desperate," Kupono's was weak ("It's a good thing this show isn't called So You Think You Can Choreograph," Nigel griped), and Vitolio's solo was an overall disappointment that as usual didn't live up to his full potential.

Of the three, I would have (reluctantly) elected for Phillip to go home--despite his growth on the show so far, he's always struggled in the non-hip-hop genres, and the fact that he didn't earn enough votes when dancing in his specialty style was troubling to me this week. But the judges must have been aware of Phillip's popularity--this show is subtitled "America's FAVORITE Dancer," after all, and Phillip is definitely well-liked. So instead, the judges sent Vitolio home.

I was saddened by this outcome...but hey, it could have been worse. At least it was not Kupono.

As for the girls, the judges all were wowed by the lovely solo by Phillip's talented partner, Jeanine. Nigel in fact declared it the best solo of the night. So Jeanine was safe. Nigel criticized golden girl Kayla's solo, saying it was all flash and no heart, but it still seemed unlikely that he and his fellow panelists would elect to cut Kayla so soon.

So it was no big shocker when Vitolio's partner, Karla (who'd already been up for elimination two other times this season), was cast off instead. This decision bummed me out less than the Vitolio one, although--as I've stated many times in my SYTYCD blogs--the level of talent this season is so high, it's hard to see anyone go home at this point.

Yep, Thursdays suck. And they're just going to get suckier as the season continues....

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