Sunday, May 8, 2011

Zekeish's review of the Rihanna Challenge

Now for my grading scale, I’m not a big numbers fan, so I have decided to do this review with words serving as my ratings. My scale is as follows
OH MY TITS= A perfect performance. Their transitions were on point, their choreography was squeaky clean, and they had wow moments that made you want to disrespect the nearest replay button. Basically the performance that makes a season
FANTABULOUS= Close to a perfect performance. There was just one thing that kept them from being perfection incarnated.
FREAK A LEAK= A great performance. Definitely an eye catcher, but had some problems with some aspects of their performance
GOODISH= A good performance. Had some noticeable problems but still had an overall solid performance that has rewatchablitly
MEH= An okay performance, nothing outside the ordinary. Had some glaring problems or provided no real wow factor.
INCREDIBLY MEDIOCRE= A very average performance. Worse than okay, but good enough to where I could sit through the performance, Barely.
WELL, THAT SUCKED= A less than average performance, nothing really went right here. Had some concepts that could have been executed better, but nothing really made you like the performance. You wanted to find the nearest dark place and hide there until the performance is over. And maybe binge eat your feelings. Whatever floats your suck fest boat.
A horrible performance. You’d rather be subjected to Bieber and thousands of 11 year old girls screaming in your ear… Like seriously, the crew might as well incorporate taking a dump on the stage into their choreo.
So let’s get right into it…
Week after week Instant Noodles have had okay performances and have been flying a little under the radar. This week, I was really looking for them to wreck the stage. To be honest, if the Noodles could have kept their routine clean, they would have had a much better performance. Don’t get me wrong, it was still a good performance (much better than that performance Swagger Crew gave to that same song), but the sloppiness of the routine took away from the overall value of the performance. Instant Noodles always gives some sort of comedy, and I think they had to rein it in a bit this week with the song title being “Hard” and them being an all-male crew, but when one of the members hit another member in the abs and then pulled his hand back like it hurt his hand, I laughed a bit. I definitely love to see well placed comedy in any routine.

The beginning of the routine was definitely cool, where they had what I like to call a “3x3” set up, where they had three members on the left hand side of the stage, and the other three on the opposite side. What they did out of this formation was a collection of rolls and freezes which gave the beginning of their performance a very nice visual. They then followed that up with another nice moving visual that featured on of their members moving across the stage in a sitting position, doing some sort of a slide kick move with the rest of the crew moving at an equal pace behind him. They finished that off with a very nice “pose to spin” freeze. Unfortunately, the level of the performance dropped from here. The rest of the performance was highlighted by a solo done by one of the members. It wasn’t the best bboy solo done on the show, but it was a good one. Then they got into their dancehall challenge appropriately dubbed the “head top” where they had to go into a headstand and while in this headstand, do some booty shakin (if ya know what I mean). The actual challenge was cool to see, but the way they got into the headstand was sloppy and since the challenge was in their wheelhouse (standing on your head) they could have done a lot more with it.

I would have liked to have them do a formation with the head top, then go into simultaneous freezes, or even do a flip out of it. I feel like they could have done more with the challenge and for a longer period of time. BUT, these Noodles tasted better than last week, much more seasoned, and I liked the overall routine. Thusly MY NOODLES ARE… GOODISH
Week after week this crew has been giving less than average performances. This week, they stepped their game up. They gave us way better choreography this week than in past weeks. Overall, the performance was a decent one. There was no real wow moment, but it had some solid moments. The beginning wasn’t bad when they did the helper backflip to start off the routine. But I didn’t like that whole microphone gag they did. The one crew member was like, here’s my hand, sing into it. After seeing past crews microphone formations, theirs was not up to par. 

Their challenge was the move called “give it a run”, which was the easiest challenge of the week. I liked the way they did their challenge. They did a hop-step transition into a (sort of) diagonal line on the left hand side of the stage, and did the “give it a run” across the stage. At moments in there, some of the boyz broke from the line and started doing a swag vibe move. You can tell they thought about their challenge more this week, and even though it wasn’t executed the greatest, it still gave them a good visual.

The main problem I had with this whole performance was the sloppiness of it. They did their challenge sloppy and some key parts of their choreography were off. Even in the challenge, they didn’t have Thomas doing the run at all, he just stood there. Also, at some parts, the crew would get just a touch out of sync.   The one-handed handstand done by two of their members was off, and the ending was weak. They spun into a superhero pose for the end. I was like “well, that was anti-climactic”. Also, the T-money (THOMAS SWAGG) “oh my swing” does not count as a highlight for their performance. They threw that in as filler until they could get to their challenge. But we love Thomas Swag, because he is so GULLY…

BTW, a message to GEO! If you are reading this, these kids do not “suck” at all, however they are not to the level of the other crews on the show. I will not judge them as kids dancing; I will judge them like I do every other crew on the show. I love ICONic, and what you do, and these kids are good dancers, but as a crew they do not compete to the others on the show. Insulting BBDC and bloggers as a whole doesn’t change that. No hate, just honesty. Anyway, with the performance… I DUB THEE… INCREDIBLY MEDIOCRE
IaMmE has been giving the ABDC stage great performances week after week, and luckily, they have a fan base to back them up. This week was absolutely amazing. There are no other words to describe it. AMAZING. I doubted how good they could make Rihanna’s "S&M" look. That song wouldn’t be the first choice of song for any of the crews on the show (except maybe for JAG6ED), but the way they started was incredible, another mind blowing visual from them. They had Chachi basically skiing on the backs of the 4 guys in the crew, while Jaja, was off to the side going “look, we are amazing and such” in her New Zealand mind accent. Then they got into a little transition to Chachi climbing on top off Pacman’s back and the whole crew does a simultaneous lean to the left. That also gave a very distinct visual. They then got into the heart of the routine, which featured their self-proclaimed “brain banging” (I like the term connecting much better). This section was absolutely fantastic as well. Chachi was in the front doing random cross moves while the rest of the crew was behind her making some sort of web with their arms. I got to be honest, the first time I saw this section I was all like “well that failed”, but the more I watched it, the more I saw the spider web they were going for, and the more it amazed me. Right after the web effect, they flipped Chachi over and went straight into this amazing abstract airplane formation. They then started waving their arms up and down giving the visual more depth and movement. This provided viewers at home with a classic OH MY TITS moment. It was amazing that they could come up with something like that in only a week’s time. The synchronization of it was impeccable, and the execution was perfect as well. 

After that section, IaMmE went right into their challenge, which was dubbed “the Spiderman”. This dancehall move features moving your body in opposing directions, adding a swing effect to it. Not only did IaMmE do this challenge, but they actually took it to the next level. If you re-watch this section, you will see that in the package the move was done without jumping. When IaMmE was doing the Spiderman, they were jumping while doing it, which gave the move an added dimension. After a short swag section (perfectly made for Chachi to show off her talent) the finished the routine with a well done fighting section, and finished the fighting section with an arm whip take down straight off of a WWE telecast. All in all, a very well done performance, the blocking was great, it was so clean that if you would have put Oxy Clean on the performance, it would have gotten dirtier, and they had plenty of WOW moments to go around. This definitely one of the top 2 performances of the season so far, and I'm looking forward to see what they can come up with next week. You know what the scary part is; they still have not unleashed Moon OR JaJa. You already know what it is…I DUB THEE… OH MY TITS
Last week’s performance was amazing on so many different levels, I was expecting them to come out and tear the stage up once again. Unfortunately, that did not happen. They went with a more choreography-centered approach this week, and it didn’t work out that well for me. The story they were telling was clear, I appreciated that aspect of it, but it developed really slowly and the energy level wasn’t there for me. I didn’t feel the same passion from them as I did in Week 1 and Week 4. They started their routine off slowly, trying to set up the story for Melissa as the hot girl every guy was trying to win over. Tight eyez and Melissa stood center stage as the rest of the crew did synchronized “hype” moves behind them (When I say hype moves I mean moves that try to get the audience pumped up). Everyone stood in the same place for this whole time, making it look awkward. After this long set up section, they finally got into the groove part of the song. This is where the camera’s lost it for me. They did their annoying zoom again and highlighted only center stage. This made Street Kingdom look really disorganized. They had members in the back doing transitional krumping while Melissa was center stage. The fact that the cameras kept zooming on Melissa really took away from the visual as a whole. I feel if I would have seen this performance from the judge’s perspective, it would have looked much better than what was coming through the T.V screen. But I can only judge what I saw, and what I saw looked disorganized. The whole “story” part of the performance got a little old for me about halfway through. They did a whole lot of duet formations. I felt like every couple of seconds Tight Eyez and Melissa were right with each other doing something together. However, I liked the part with Tight Eyez and Melissa got sexy together. During the “take it, take it take it” part. That was nice.  I enjoyed how they did their challenge as well.

Their Challenge was to do “the dutty wine” which is a very sexual move, almost opposite of Street Kingdom’s style. They handled their task pretty well, more so than some of the other crews. When the song got to its dancehall part, they started doing the dutty wine as a whole. They did this move for a good amount of time, and it honestly looked good. It had a nice vibe to it. Even though I thought they could have gotten a little more sexual with it, I understand how awkward it must have been for Melissa to get sexy in front of people she considers family. Right after this part Tight Eyez and Melissa got together again (yes, again) and Tight Eyez took off his scarf and did a rubber band effect to Melissa’s booty shaking. Street Kingdom then got into another formation with Melissa at the front of the stage, Tight Eyez came over and paired up with Melissa once again, and with a little more booty popping and making fun of short people, the routine was over. The ending was okay for me, nothing really special, the story was told (albeit too much) and Melissa got sexy again at the end, but it wasn’t anything great. The whole performance for me was just okay. I appreciated the story, but it wasn’t nearly as good as last week, although it wasn’t as bad as their Black Eyed Peas performance. Therefore I DUB THIS KINGDOM… MEH
I'm done being surprised at the bottom two. This season’s voters are easily the worst in ABDC history. When you have a crew that’s been giving less than average performances all season long make it over crews much more talented and experienced because of a factor other than their dance, it’s sickening. You have one crew that shouldn’t have seen the bottom for another few weeks (Phunk Phenomenon), and on the other side, you have a crew that should have been in the Bottom Two a couple weeks ago. 787 Crew did improve over this journey though, and they left with a ton of class. You can tell they are nice people, and they love their Puerto Rico. I wasn’t sad to see them go, but I definitely respect 787 crew.

-Phunk Phenomenon-
Phunk’s BlackEyed Peas performance was absolutely amazing, and I keep waiting for them to top it. This week was a fantastic performance, but it wasn’t their best, and now that the show is getting closer to the finale, and because Phunk doesn’t have the biggest fan base, they need to top themselves each and every week. Now with that said, let us get to their performance. Their beginning was EXPLOSIVE! They came out with Bebo and two other members doing simultaneous handstand hops, and then topped that off with a round off back handspring to backflip. Again, all three of them did this together. This was a great way to start this routine off. They then went directly into a SICK popping section which featured some very nice visuals, especially the “shoulders revolve around the head” visual that they did at the end of the section. They then went into a truffle shuffle?? They lifted up their shirts and popped their booty around to the beat of the music. That was a good comedic part in the routine, I dug it. After this Phunk went right into a little hype section that gave even more versatility to the routine. This led up to a whole dancehall section that featured every member doing some dancehall moves. The vibe I got from this whole section was good; it got me moving around a little bit in my seat as they were doing this. BUT, they didn’t do their challenge during this section; they saved that for right afterwards.

Their challenge was called “the Chaplin”, which is a move that features a little bit of footwork with a dancehall vibe. They executed this challenge pretty well, it wasn’t the greatest, but they had people doing it on the floor as well as members doing it the more traditional way standing up in the back. This challenge led up to one of the best moments I have ever seen on an ABDC stage. Bebo rolled backwards into a headhollow and as he was doing this, he jumped over a crew member lying on the ground. He did a rollback headhollow jump into a headhollow freeze. This was absolutely incredible, and I’ve never seen anything quite like it in my life, and I doubt I will ever again. It was a phenomenal moment in the routine, and really gave the performance the WOW moment it needed. After this they went into a bit of footworking (which was cut off badly by the camera) and did a Michael Jackson crotch grab jump toward the front of the stage, they then ended with a Michael Jackson head hold point to Bebo, who finished this routine off with a stomach grab freeze. This routine was a great one, but I didn’t feel like it lived up to the level of their B.E.P routine. I felt they lost a little during the whole dancehall section, and you could easily tell that they were about to do a huge trick right before the headhollow jump. It was like they were like, okay; let’s just keep doing the Chaplin until Bebo does the trick of the century. For me, it just wasn’t an OH MY TITS level performance, it was damn close though, so I tell them (and yes I did vote for them a bunch because they don’t deserve Bottom 2)… I DUB YOU… FANTABULOUS
-787 CREW-
I'm sure they weren’t expecting to be in the bottom two this week, especially after last week’s emotional (Perry finally got to perform on stage) performance. But they were, and they went against one of the best crews of this season. They knew they really had to give it everything they got in order to win. I feel like they did give it everything, but it wasn’t good enough to beat Phunk. This performance started out okay. They started with what they are best at, and that is tricks. After a handstand flip out of a weird formation, they went into another formation where three members where doing handstands. It looked like they tried to do a tutting sequence with this formation but it was sloppy and didn’t really give that good of a visual. Three of the members then did a back roll exploding out from each other while another crew member went into a front handspring 540 flip. That was executed well. Not the best 540 flip I’ve ever seen, but definitely a good addition to this section. They then went into some basic choreography that wasn’t very clean and didn’t really do anything besides fill up time. They then went into a 3x3 moving transition to the center of the stage and did some mediocre dancehall moves. During this section they gave us some levels while waving which gave a nice visual. 

After, they went into their challenge, which was the “Gallis step”. But the twist is they had to do this while going to the floor. They did the Gallis step, but didn’t go to the floor with it. The standing version was okay, but it lacked some energy. They then went into some more basic choreography with some basic transitions that didn’t really add anything to the performance. It actually got boring until they partnered up. Their duet section was entertaining, and provided the viewers with some much needed pizazz. During this partner section they sorta kinda did their challenge. They went to the ground, landed on their partner’s calf, and then did the Gallis step. Their challenge was to “do the Gallis step AS you are going to the ground”. So for the second week in a row, they didn’t really address their challenge. If they would have done the Gallis step as they were going to the ground it would not have been a problem, but they did it after they were already low… After this, they went into some more basic “filler” choreography that led up to some synchronized full twists by two of the members while the others were just sort of standing there. This trick was an awesome move to see, especially because of the fact that they did it in perfect synchronization, which is very hard to do, but I thought they could have done more with the rest of the crew besides doing basically nothing. After this trick, they did a walking transition (YAY more walking) into their spots on the end of the stage. While they were doing this, one of the members did a handstand to elbow stand sequence in the center of the stage. This was interesting because it was perfectly on beat, and decently executed. While it wasn’t a WOW moment, it was a memorable one. After that solo sequence, four of the members did backflips off of the stage. That was cool to see, mainly because it gave them something to end the routine off with.

My main problem with this whole routine for me was that everything seemed to be leading up to their next trick. It didn’t flow very well at all. It was like, Trick, bad choreo, challenge trick, bad choreo, trick. Their choreography didn’t do anything for them and actually took away from the performance more than added to it. Against Phunk Phenomenon, you have to be near perfection, and they were not even close. It was necessary for them leave, as Phunk had a better performance that night and had better performances thru ought the season. Although I really appreciated how respectful they were, and how nice they seemed. It really showed their true colors, and I respect them for that. I hope they do well in the future, but their time on the ABDC stage is done.  I DUB THEE… MEH
1.    Instant Noodles Beginning
2.    IaMmE’s Whole Performance
3.    Phunk Phenomenon’s Rollback Headhollow Jump to Headhollow Freeze
4.    787 Sync Full Twist’s 

1) IaMmE: Fantabulous & ¼
2) Phunk Phenomenon: Fantabulous
3) Instant Noodles & Street Kingdom: Goodish
4) ICONic Boyz:Well That S
ucked & ¼
This episode was a good one, and it gets me nervous/excited for next week. It makes me nervous because unless ICONic Boyz hits the bottom two next week, they will be in the top 3. I'm excited because these crews are starting to gear up for the final, and we are probably going to see some multiple OH MY TITS performances in the weeks to come. There are two definite crews that deserve to be in the finale, and there are three crews that need to seriously step their game up in the coming weeks. I want to see an all-out battle. MAKE US BELIEVE YOU WANT THIS!

It’s going to be interesting where these eliminated crews votes go, and what impact these votes going to make on the season? Also, Lil Mama seriously needs to get off the drugs or whatever she is on. She’s all concerned about the Youth, and being some sort of voice for the youth or some bullshit like that. Just remove your bias, and judge the crews as DANCE CREWS. Come on now, same with D-trix, remove your bias from Tight Eyez and give him criticism! He’s a grown man, he can take it.
*Well this marks the end of the fifth review. Tell me what you thought about the review, any respectful disagreements will be answered with a respectful response. If you throw hate out, you are going to get hate back. If you like to see crews just starting out visit and tell us what you think of our crew. A new video will be up soon. Thanks for READING!

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