Sunday, February 13, 2011

Teldon's ABDC Rewatch - Season 3, Episode 1 - Sudden Death Challenge

This is Teldon's Rewatch Review of America's Best Dance Crew Season 3's Sudden Death Challenge. Thanks, Teldon!
Note from Teldon: I am switching to a new format that allows me to judges crews on their individual merits and not just to my tastes.  Scoring this write up will be a bit high and forgiving as I get my bearings.


Strikers All-Stars dancing to "Swing Ya Rag" by T.I. featuring Swizz Beatz
First Impressions- Oh goodie: ANOTHER college team and after the last one did so well.....Also they come off as a tad cocky.
Was it clean? Extremely clean.  I would not expect anything less from a step crew.  Even if someone was just a hair off in formation they were still doing the moves in perfect time with the other members of the crew. (10)pts
Was it well thought out? For the most part.  The opening was nice and high energy but they could have used the stage more.  Plus it kinda felt like they were doing the same basic motions over and over again with out really changing anything up. (8)pts
How well did they do the challenge? They gave off an OK first impression, it really was not that memorable. (5)pts
What were the highlights? Their transitions were the best part.  They flowed nicely into what they were setting up.
What, if anything, took away from the performance? Lack of variety and when you see a step routine you expect to hear the beats which did not happen.
Total points- 23 pts

Beat Freaks dancing to "Din Daa Daa" by George Kranz
First Impressions- Oh how cute feminists.  Ok just kidding it is nice to see another group of strong women dancers.
Was it clean?  Very much so and where it counted most.   Normally crews mess up on their timing while doing floor work but only Teresa was just a hair slow on the part where they went to the floor.  However, it was not significant enough for me to really notice it until I rewatched that little section four times.   The other major area they shined in this was the formation when they all got together and did the hard and fast moves.   (10)pts
Was it well thought out? Yes it was because they started out strong and kept it at a consistent level throughout the performance.  Transitions made sense and flowed well into each other by building a good foundation that the other members took and made better.  Nothing in the routine felt out of place at all.  (10)pts
How well did they do the challenge? They wanted to show what a crew of strong women dancers could do and they did that by showcasing well thought moves. (10)pts
What were the highlights?  The handstand section really stood out to me as the best part of the performance. They held it for at least ten seconds while the other members of the crew framed them well and added to the performance.
What, if anything, took away from the performance?  Nothing really took away from this set.  One of the best first impression routines on the show to date.
Total points-30 pts

G.O.P. Dance dancing to "Rompe" by Daddy Yankee
First Impressions- Street kids on a mission.
Was it clean? For the most part.  Only time it got sloppy was when they tried to sync their stunts up (8)pts
Was it well thought out? No it was not.  A confusing opening took away from the impact they could have had.  In addition, while I like how they tried to show off their different styles they could do there was nothing there to help transition into a new style and it was too jerky.  With that said they did do those styles very well. (5)pts
How well did they do the challenge? Basically all they showed us is they had Latin influences in their dance.  Besides that there was nothing new we had not seen before and done better. (3)pts
What were the highlights? None really.
What, if anything, took away from the performance? The opening, lack of transitions, no originality.
Total points-16 pts

Did the judges get it right?  Out of these three they made the right choice.  GOP needs to show they can handle this show.

Quest Crew dancing to "Hero" by Nas featuring Keri Hilson
First Impressions- The SYTYCD legends are on the stage
Was it clean? I want to say yes but it felt off to me.  Maybe it was the framing or something else but this just didn't feel clean to me even though I could not see any major errors. (10)pts
Was it well thought out? For the most part.  When they danced together it was on fire but then they added in tricks for tricks sake at one point.  What I mean is they did really good tricks and really good performance pieces and they fit them in.  But, at times it felt like they could have linked those different parts together better. (8)pts
How well did they do the challenge? They did give a decent first impression, I could tell they were really holding back  on what they could do. (10)pts
What were the highlights? The first handstand and over under flip and twist stunt at the beginning both were well done and well framed.
What, if anything, took away from the performance? The middle just felt completely out of place.
Total points-28 pts

Fly Khicks dancing to "Milkshake" by Kelis
First Impressions- Oh goodie, the "pretty girl" crew.
Was it clean? Not so much.  While there were no major screw ups there were a few timing errors in the middle part and quite a few formation errors throughout the entire performance. (6)pts
Was it well thought out? To a degree it was.  They played up the sex angle and they played up the hard elements with a nice transition from to the other. (7)pts
How well did they do the challenge? Overall it was OK.  Nothing really stood out for me that much.  Except for Shane's comments that instantly landed them in whoredom for the rest of the season.  Folks less then a second total of butt shaking does make your crew nothing but booty shakers.  Hell, Live in Color usually spent on average 10 seconds shaking their butts and Fanny pack did at least 6 seconds of it during their touch my body routine. (8)pts
What were the highlights? The transition from sexy to hard.  The fact they danced to Milkshake and made it danceable.
What, if anything, took away from the performance? You could tell they were either holding back or that was all they could do.
Total points- 21 pts

Ringmasters dancing to "Welcome Back" by Young Jeezy
First Impressions- The token street kids.
Was it clean? God no.  When they FINALLY got to parts where they were working as a crew (and the camera was not focused on the bare chested young men), what moves they did were all over the place and not together at all. (3)pts
Was it well thought out? It was a hot mess.  They spent way too much time setting everything up.  There was too much crap going on and little to no dancing whatsoever in the routine. (3)pts
How well did they do the challenge? Again bad first impression.  They wanted to show flexing to everyone and as a first impression of seeing it for the first time it was just bad.  All they showed is they could dance poorly and do contortion.  Not a good combo. (3)pts
What were the highlights? none
What, if anything, took away from the performance? The entire routine.
Total points- 9 pts.

Did the judges get it right?  No they did not.  Yes I agree Ringmasters needed a chance to show what they could do but coddling them like that will not help.

Boxcuttuhz dancing to "Bonafied Lovin'" by Chromeo
First Impressions- Great another themed crew and shocker its nerds.
Was it clean? YES!  Up till now most of the crews were clean but they were not clean in an exciting way.  This group's energy carried over into well thought out moves that popped out at you.  The only thing that hurt it was the screw up at the end. (9)pts
Was it well thought out? So far this has been the only crew that told a story.  The routine as a whole was wholesome and flirty with nicely framed elements through out (10)pts
How well did they do the challenge? They did well.  The nerd theme took away from what should be a great crew.  If you are gonna do costumes please do something we have not seen before. The screw up also took away from it.(6)pts
What were the highlights? Lydia's solo and Lydia and Lando's duo definitely showcased a lot of skill.
What, if anything, took away from the performance?
The ending killed them.  A major screw up Week One will always make us wonder.
Total points- 25 pts

Dynamic Edition dancing to "My Humps" by Black Eyed Peas
First Impressions-  FINALLY!!!! We got some cloggers!
Was it clean? Like Strikers All Stars,  I would be shocked if it was not.  They did what Boxcuttuhz did and made their moves exciting and energetic while also making them look fresh. (10)pts
Was it well thought out? Very much so.  They had some of the best transitions and formations ever seen on the show.  Like Beat Freaks they built good foundations and made what they did next better. (10)pts
How well did they do the challenge? It was a good first impression but I got the feeling it was bit limited.  They could have showcased a little more upper body movements. (6)pts
What were the highlights? The ending was very well thought out and cute.  The fact they made My humps danceable.
Total points- 26 pts

Team Millennia dancing to "Beating Heart Baby" by Head Automatica
First Impressions-  Again why did they change their image?
Was it clean? Not so much.  While there were no glaring screw ups there were some formation errors when they went into rock star mode. (8)pts
Was it well thought out? To a degree.  It started slow then picked up when they went back to their signature hard and raw style, but went to train wreck territory when they played to their new theme again. (6)pts
How well did they do the challenge? Again tonight is about making first impressions and this impression was they were gonna play their new personas all the time.  They spent way to much time in character and not enough time focused on the dancing. (5)pts
What, if anything, took away from the performance? Like I said, way to much time spent playing their new personas.
Total points- 19 pts

Did the judges get it right? Again, no they did not.  I think the only reason Boxcuttuhz was sent into the bottom was because of their screw up and because they did not want a chance that TM would go home first.

G.O.P. Dance, Fly Khicks, Boxcuttahs dancing to "Live Your Life" by T.I. featuring Rihanna

G.O.P. Dance- OK I could see where these guys were going with this.  However, at the beginning one guy was not in place and was late going into the floor work. Add in timing errors with the middle and the final stunt where the one guy flips early make for another poor routine.

Fly Khicks- I liked the fact that they moved and glided into formation during the battle break before they were set up.  Then immediately going into hard hitting choreo helped to make up for their OK routine earlier. If that was not enough, Mama Khicks goes and literally rapes the stage.  There was fun and flirty moves afterwords that was done OK but the end statement made for one of the best sudden death performances for quite a while (until season 5 week 1).

Boxcuttahs- Again they brought a little bit of storytelling to their routine and out of the three they were the cleanest.  Nothing really stood out good or bad though, but it made you forget about their screw up earlier.

Who should win this showdown and why- I always say these sudden death rounds are about redemption and Fly Khicks certainly did that for themselves.  They showed they are not afraid to
go hard and dirty while being girlie and sexy.  I would have given it Boxcuttahs but the Khicks just had a better thought out routine and it made more of a statement.

Who should be kicked off and why-
G.O.P Dance should be the one to go home.  Honestly their sudden death was worse then their original performance and they really did not show us anything we had not seen before in season two.

Did the Judges get it right? Yes they did.  The right crews were given a second chance and the worst one in the sudden death got sent home.
Overall thoughts about the episode- So far this is one of the better week ones we had.  With the exception of two crews all proved they belonged to on the stage.  Thankfully one of the two underwhelming crews got sent home.
Rankings based on points earned tonight-
1. Beat Freaks (30pts)
2. Quest (28pts)
3. Dynamic Edtion (26pts)
4. Boxcuttahs (25pts)
5. Strikers All-Stars (23pts)
6. Fly Khicks (21pts)
7. Team Millennia (19pts)
8. G.O.P. Dance (16pts) Eliminated
9. Ringamasters (9pts)

Click here to return to the first page and to leave comments. Thanks again, Teldon -- we're looking forward to rewatching Season 3 with you!