Joe Viles/FOX
Eileen Clarke
June 22, 2007 AT 04:00 AM EDT

So You Think You Can Dance

TV Show
Reality TV
run date
Nigel Lythgoe, Cat Deeley, Mary Murphy
Current Status
In Season

”So You Think You Can Dance”: A bad bounce

Well, you could have knocked me over with a cockatoo feather. There I was watching last night’s elimination show, envisioning a teary-eyed wrap-up for Cedric the hip-hopper, the other dancers sadly giving him little comfort pats on the back while secretly and badly hiding their relief it wasn’t their own turn to go, when I was brought screeching back into reality-show reality. Cedric got a last-minute reprieve!

Thanks in large part, inexplicably, to judge Mia Michaels, who admitted she was still reeling from losing her favorite contemporary dancer, Ricky, last week. So why would she sacrifice another contemporary dancer to make room for a ”unique” one? Must be that love-juice hangover. It’s funny, when I saw Mia emphatically gesturing while making her point earlier on to Mary and Nigel in their very ”private” deliberation room, also known as the staircase (fancy!), I thought all the fuss surely had to be about which girl they were letting go. Surely. But no.

It’s not that Cedric’s solo wasn’t good. He’s got his own unique style, and as Nigel predicted way back when, whenever he has to dance for his life, he’s going to wow the judges because no one can do what he can. He just hops up on that board and rides the wave in, but it’s hard for me not to think about who else he’s going to take out in his wake (sorry for the surfing metaphors, but I just finished my first surf lesson last night): Last night it was Latin ballroom dancer Faina, who held up her part of their foxtrot the night before (though she could slip Kenny Ortega a few bucks, since she pretty much ripped off a slice of Dirty Dancing for her solo). Next, he’ll bring his partnering skills to Shauna, who has not exactly been a shining star thus far. So Cedric, you’d better be dang good next week, because you’ll be dancing for two lives before you even get to dance for your life, you know? Enough of that, I’m still mad. Okay, breathe, everybody.

As Nigel said, somebody’s got to be in the bottom three. Was Hok’s samba worse than Jimmy’s hip-hop? You betcha. But Hok is very likable, and this, I must keep reminding my annoyed self, is a competition for America’s favorite dancer, not America’s best dancer.

Which brings me to the other surprise of the night — seeing Jessi and Pasha in the bottom three. They didn’t deserve to be there. They were birds, they soared, enough said. But now that they’ve delivered some uninspired solos, they’ve succeeded in putting some dents in their dance armor. Especially Jessi, with her little girl lost in a baby-doll dress, don’t know what to do now so I’ll hoist it and show my undies moves.

I hate to end on cranky, so here’s the positivity: I loved Shane Sparks’ opening number, especially when the boys craftily converted their tees into Carmen Miranda tops; loved Cat’s canary-yellow dress, especially since it didn’t have pockets; loved the reggaetón singer, but just one thought — if he wants to keep it real, shouldn’t he consider changing his name to Papi Yankee? I’m just sayin.’

Oh, enough frivolity. Here’s the pertinent questions to keep you dance maniacs going for a while: Will Cedric redeem himself next week, or will he take out Shauna? Will Lacey ever lose her fake closed-eyed, suspended-breath look of relief that she’s not in the bottom three? And do the judges take their cups with them when they deliberate because they fear spikers, or love juicers? Tune in next week, dance fans, when your regular Dance Watcher, Adam Vary, will be back to chronicle the latest episode of As the Dancers Turn, and I can relax and watch this show like a normal person. Toodles.

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