Monday, June 18, 2012

Byeynyn's Review - America's Best Dance Crew Season 7 Finale

Both crews perform to Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake,” a song about a break up. The girls of 8 Flavahz are wearing the rainbow spectrum of jacket colors, while Elektrolytes are wearing matching shiny black and white jackets. The routine itself covers quite a few different styles, including partnering with major height differentials. Both crews pull an expected amount of flips and have moments to showcase their personal styles, and it’s a decent performance. It’s not spectacular, but they mesh fairly well.
Elektrolytes are up to perform first, and they are surprised Katy Perry is there. I guess Joey thought it was a Katy Perry impersonator for a moment? Elektrolytes were revealed to have auditioned four times, and Katy relates that to when she was constantly getting dropped by record labels as a struggling artist. Poreotix joins Elektrolytes for the next routine. If it was a stretch to call Elektrolytes underdogs, calling Poreotix underdogs would pull a muscle. Poreotix was the exact opposite of an underdog crew. They probably could have gotten the most audience votes for Best Foreign Crew that season as well. This pairing of crews makes sense, as both are all-male crews, repeat auditioners, HHI US Champions, and fans of giving routines an electric flair.

They’re performing “Part of Me” together, all of them wearing sparkly black vests, green sleeves, and sunglasses. The popping is expected, but they’ve spliced in some waacking and voguish dips as well.

It’s a good opportunity to see a more playful side of Elektrolytes, even though Poreotix is clearly at the helm for this section of the routine. The ripple effect they create with the arm waves is incredibly eye-catching, like two green snakes dancing at each other. The Elektrolytes get their moment to act really athletic, and Marcus gets the most of the screen time of this performance in general. Both crews complement each other well. There is a random shoe kiss, which I initially thought was Poreotix showing a foot fetish, but it’s really a joke to the classic stunt setup. Both crews finish using each other’s poses. Ack! So many arm angles! It’s like geometry homework all over again!

D-Trix says, “Elektreotix in the house tonight!” and gives a shout-out to Jason, the mini-“Dumbo” performing. That makes another champion crew that decided to adopt a child. I couldn’t even tell he was an imitation. All Asians look the same to me, apparently, so tell us more about what you thought of the performance, Jackie Chan. He liked how it began with control (Poreotix) and went into big stunts (Elektrolytes). He wishes Elektrolytes good luck.
Now 8 Flavahz gets to perform. They are clearly more excited to see Katy Perry. Katy points out that all the members of the crew look very unique. The focus of this all-girl meeting is about clothes and wardrobes, because sometimes people end up taking fashion advice from people who wear bras that shoot fireworks. They’re working with We Are Heroes, the only female crew to win thus far. Hiro states she wants them to win, but it’s not like the performances tonight have any stakes. Other than both crews being all female, their overall styles are quite different. The AV Club stated Quest Crew, with their ridiculously impressive stunts, would be a better matchup for the moment-centric 8 Flavahz, while WAH’s intricacies would have been more suited to MWC (or even RNG or Fanny Pak, IMO). Everyone having lady-parts is not enough to make a cohesive routine.

They’re dancing to “TGIF,” which is a fun song but seems like an iffy choice for 8 Flavahz. It’s a song about drinking and sexing, and that tends to limit the lyrical connectivity when your average member is about eight years too young to legally drink and about three years too young for “16 and Pregnant.” The members of 8 Flavahz are wearing grey studded outfits, while WAH’s wearing mostly black. 8 Flavahz starts with some choreo, and then pulls out a giant purple cloth for everyone to go under. What is this, a Gymboree? WAH comes out from underneath with some popping. The routine has a lot of tutting, waacking, voguing, and feminine energy in general. They form a 4-5-4 diagonal section for some isolations, and Tamara flips Charlize around like a wrestling victim. Summer uses a cotton-candy colored grass skirt to shake her tail-feather, and I do think 8 Flavahz should have used more island influences in their earlier routines. Three of the performers do backflips into shablams, but one person messes up the landing. Hiro passes a shiny purple cape to Kaelynn, either a metaphor for “passing the torch” or more overemphasis on outfits. Because women and clothing! AMIRITE, FELLAS?!

Lil Mama says the girls gave the twenty year olds a run for their money and says, “Just kidding!” Another backhanded compliment! I’m surprised Lil Mama’s hands aren’t sore. She compliments both crews on their unique styles and says they’re both sassy and athletic, and also powerful and sexy. She also calls the exchanging of the cape “passing the throne,” which, as a mixed metaphor, is hilarious to visualize.

Both crews, in light of Angel’s mother passing, head to a charity event, Relay for Life, to help raise awareness for cancer. It’s a good bonding experience and a great way for both crews to almost forget they’re battling each other for a title and $100,000.
IaMmE is next, having won the previous season with their brain-banging formations. Both current crews pay their compliments to the former champions, and Philip is highlighted for his crazy bone-breaking stuff. I always felt Philip Chbeeb was the best part of that crew. As far as champions go, IaMmE are still the best at illusions. They are performing to “E.T.”

They’ve got grey vests over black outfits, and Moon has a funky new haircut. They begin with a crazy spacewalking visual. Emilio and Jaja look like they’re on elliptical exercise machines. They go into a bunch of formation changes before making slow-motion waves as the lasers come on. They line up and do waving, Philip using his feet to complete the snaking effect. I’m slightly distracted by the two astronauts in the back doing mundane things. There’s another crazy brain-banging moment where it appears that Philip uses bone-breaking to be the centerpiece of an alien creature. They go into tight, precise choreo, and Brandon gets to do footwork AND act like a pony creature. Ooh, another brain-bang! Take a shot! They do a cool illusion where three members in the front are lifted (it looks almost like levitating) and carried into the back. Emilio does a side flip off someone’s back. They slow down for more lyrical choreo and then finish with their hand signals. It’s a great performance, but it didn’t need the background distractions or what was basically a class of toddlers firing green laser pointers the whole time.

JC is wowed. He calls it creative and so visually stunning and fantastic. IaMmE wins! JC wants to go back to the beginning for the replay. I think he wants to replay the whole routine. He says the illusions never stop coming. He thanks IaMmE for coming back and showing off how talented they are. I wouldn’t mind if they kept on doing routines to Katy Perry songs, because they’re currently batting two for two.
The show shifts back to Elektrolytes (remember those guys?) and their journey. Their long, arduous journey from Arizona. They had to deal with a major injury by Chris, and state that their Drake performance was when they broke out (I think it was their J. Lo subway performance that actually started turning heads). While in the bottom, they took down two powerful competitors in Fanny Pak and Mos Wanted Crew. They call themselves the hardest working crew there, which is impossible to confirm but I’ll buy it.

Now 8 Flavahz gets their highlight reel. They had to deal with being coming together physically for the first time, and then a traumatic loss when Angel’s mother died. Their “Vogue” performance shot them to the front of the pack in votes early on, and it wasn’t until LMFAO Week when they had to battle RNG to stay in the competition. They’ve put on a variety of different performances since then, and are the youngest female crew to take a dump on Iconic Boyz. (They don’t say that part, but it’s true.)

The judges compliment both crews. After a long, agonizing wait, the winner is… Elektrolytes! Well done, gentlemen. They peaked at the right time and despite the competition being a constantly weary battle of attrition, their later performances had much more energy than their earlier ones. 8 Flavahz, although they’ve come in second, seem like they will still be hugely successful from this experience. I would not be surprised to see some of those girls in music videos in the future. Both crews hug and there is an annoying mess of confetti from the ceiling. It’s like autumn came early. Elektrolytes finish with their victory routine to “Starships” by Nicki Minaj. Their long journey is finally over.
I’d like to thank Blogging Best Dance Crew, and especially NancyT, for being supportive and letting me post my recaps and general ramblings on the site. I’d also like to thank the other reviewers for raising the bar. Finally, I’d like to give a big thanks to all the readers, who are the reason I continuously do this sort of silly thing. I wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t love the show and all the dancing it exposes. I’d love to do this again next season if it continues, and hopefully it will. Thanks for tuning in, everybody! In the meantime, enjoy some So You Think You Can Dance!
Click here to leave comments and return to the first page. Thanks again Byeynyn! It's been great following ABDC with you!