Nigel Lythgoe Shares His Feelings About Will’s Departure

Today I was sent a TV Guide article that has some quotes from Nigel Lythgoe talking about the departure of Will Wingfield from So You Think You Can Dance. The part in quotes is from the article with my commentary in between.

Did the brilliant Will Wingfield exit Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance too soon? Head judge/executive producer Nigel Lythgoe certainly thinks so.

Who cares what Nigel thinks? It’s not his choice anymore it’s America’s.

When the moment of truth arrived during last week’s results show, here’s what the audience didn’t see: Lythgoe putting his head down on the judges’ table as if he couldn’t bear to watch what was going to happen next. Would it be Will or another audience favorite, Twitch, getting the boot?

How funny is this? Nigel acts as if Will getting booted off is wrong. This of course would assume that there’s a right and wrong answer. The fact is that there isn’t. There’s no such thing as right or wrong when we’re talking about a favorite dancer. Especially since Fox has said repeatedly that So You Think You Can Dance is “America’s Favorite Dancer.” Considering Nigel Lythgoe isn’t even an American, then does his opinion really matter in a contest for “America’s Favorite Dancer?” America voted and America decided. It’s great that way and that’s the beauty of America.

When Cat Deeley announced that Will would be going home, the crowd gasped. Widely acknowledged to be the finest all-around dancer this season — and coming off of a sensational pas de deux with Katee Shean and a rousing James Brown imitation in his Wednesday solo routine — nobody saw it coming. After the initial shock, the audience gave a standing ovation. “To me, it’s very much like losing Chris Daughtry or Tamyra Gray from American Idol,” Lythgoe said after the show. “Either one of them leaving — Will or Twitch — was a big disappointment. I really thought Will, Twitch and Joshua would be fighting it out until the end.”

So I must admit. I really actually enjoyed Will’s James Brown imitation. The pas de deux was incredible because of Katee I thought, so no surprises there for me when Will got booted. I can agree that Will is a great dancer, but dancing isn’t just about technique. Will didn’t have that it quality that I think the final three men had and that’s why he’s gone.

Twitch had fallen to his knees, with his back to the audience, when he landed in the bottom two, and had to be comforted by Deeley. “I had words with him,” shares Lythgoe. “I said, ‘Look, you’re in the Top 10. After this, there’s only going to be one winner, so please use the next few weeks just to enjoy yourself.'”

Cat Deeley comforting Twitch was one of the nicest parts of the show. As if we needed another reason to like Cat even more. I also love how Nigel “had words with him.” What a commanding father figure.

Lythgoe says Twitch will probably get the same kind of sympathy vote this week that hip-hopper Comfort got the week prior — before she was sent packing for a second time. Who will be standing at the end? “A boy is gonna be the winner this year,” says Lythgoe. “That’s my gut.”

It’s not about sympathy, but Nigel is right. Twitch fans will not provide sympathy votes, but they will get out and vote more than they ever have before. That spells trouble for Mark Kanemura.

I would normally say I don’t know at this point if a guy or a girl is going to win this year, but Nigel has more than his gut to determine if a guy is going to win. I imagine as producer of the show he’s seen the numbers of votes so I’ll go with him and say a guy will win. Joshua Allen winning So You Think You Can Dance would be a great ending and well deserved.