Kelsey McNeal/Fox
Kate Ward
September 11, 2009 AT 03:32 AM EDT

Hello SYTYCD fans! Remember me? Well, like everyone’s favorite televised dance competition, I’m back! But something’s not quite right here, huh? What is it? Well, my name isn’t Adam B. Vary. And let’s face it: SYTYCD without Adam is kind of like Cat without her foppish wardrobe. Mary without her hot tamale scream. Nigel without his patented ”Benny-Hill’s-got-nothing-on-me!” perviness. But hopefully my 13 years of ballet training will serve me well, and make up for our former recapper’s absence this season.

Speaking of changes: Though it was relatively quiet, last night’s premiere — set in Los Angeles — proved that even after five seasons, SYTYCD has yet to become predictable fare. Though we’re accustomed to watching contemporary dancers flail their way to the finals, hip-hoppers strut to the win, and ballroom experts shimmy for the crown, season 6 just might just yield a different victor: a tapper. Can I get an ”Amen!”? For the love of Gene Kelly, why hasn’t the show ever included a tap dancer in the top 20? After watching last night’s three stellar, unbelievably fun auditions, I’d say the underdogs could very well indeed turn season 6 into ”the year of the tapper.” And it’s about time.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves here, eh? Let’s evaluate some of last night’s auditions, some of which were good, few of which were bad, many of which were ”meh.” So let’s get to it!

The Bad:

Cole Clemens: Okay, I have a bone to pick with the Fox program. Not only was the premiere a disappointingly short 60 minutes long, but the show also made us wait 10 minutes to see an actual audition. And the first one they aired was…Cole’s. I’ve seen a lampshade create better performance art than this bizarre auditioner. I’m not sure exactly what exactly the rooster-coiffed ”dancer” was going for with his piece — in which he clumsily glided around the stage while chanting, ”Allure. Seduce. Shatter. Shatter. Shatter. Shatter. Shatter” — but if he’s looking to nab a Fornarina deal, I’m sorry to inform him that Lindsay Lohan already got the gig. Sadly for Cole, right after he blew out his imaginary candles, the judges blew him off, and the poor guy was left to chicken run off the stage and onto the set of Waiting for Guffman.

Christopher Aguilar: True, it was fun to watch this wannabe movie producer. But it’s also fun to watch a skateboarder nail his nuts on a railing. Epic fails are, let’s face it, entertaining. And Christopher’s was a whopper: Not only did he fall while attempting a back somersault, but the guy also obviously spent time enrolled in the Backstreet Boys School of Literal Dancing. But now that we’ve agreed that he’s bad in that Elaine Benes kind of way, I have to respectfully disagree with guest judge Adam Shankman, who thought it was off-putting to watch a male dancer perform a number usually reserved for a woman. Uh, ex-squeeze me, Adam? First of all, I thought we were past this after last year’s same-sex dancing fiasco. Secondly, Christopher was dancing Fosse, a fairly unisex style. And last I checked, both male and female dancers were featured in Chicago‘s ”All That Jazz” number — performing the same steps — even if Velma Kelly was the star. Lastly, this critique is coming courtesy of Adam Shankman, the same person who directed Hairspray, a movie that stars — you’ve got it — a male (John Travolta) rocking some feminine dance moves. If he was unsettled watching Christopher, one hopes he packed enough Alka-Seltzer to last him through the 2007 musical’s shooting schedule. If a number is danced well, it’s danced well, and that’s all that should matter, thankyouverymuch. Moving on…

NEXT: Do the clothes make the man or does the dance?

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