SYTYCD Season 6 Cheers and Jeers

Here’s Season 6 in review. Y’all brought up a lot of this stuff in recent comments (Mrs. D’s comment in particular), which gave me the idea to do a review of the season, what we liked and didn’t like. If you disagree with me (or agree), feel free to put your two cents in, as it’s all subjective and I’d love to know what you think!

Jeer:

This season felt more rushed that any other that I can think of. Between baseball, the Presidential address, so many audition episodes and an early end to the season because of Christmas coming up, I feel like this year’s Top 20 got shafted on actual dancing time. But not just the dancers – the choreographers got fewer chances to wow us. And the audience lost out, as well.

Cheer:

I loved that I didn’t have to wait till the summer for a new season. While America’s Favorite Dancer gets a shorter reign if they continue on the two seasons a year model, we had a shorter wait, which was really nice. After Season 5, I just don’t know how I would have contained my SYTYCD longing. Are the producers hoping to follow a Survivor/Dancing with the Stars model with the two seasons a year thing? If so, they should be just as smart about scheduling and not hesitate to move the finale to a separate night (like Survivor’s Sunday finale yesterday).

Jeer:

The new stage, or at least the screen behind it. It seems like we’ve transitioned from utter hatred toward the new stage, which always threatens to swallow up the dancers, to an acceptance that we’ll probably never get our intimate little stage back. Many readers have begun to say that the screen and imprudent use of it, is actually the bigger issue.

Cheer:

The group numbers were able to utilize this enormous space in really pleasing ways. It’s nice to think that SYTYCD can now command (and fill) a larger audience space. Maybe it’ll end up being a wonderful challenge to the choreographers (as well as the production crew, especially camera folk) to recapture that intimate feeling.

Jeer:

It was awful having three static judges (Nigel, Mary and Adam). No new blood! Adam seemed to be the only one who had something to say, most reliably at least. And when the three additional judges (Debbie, Lil C and Tyce) came in for the finale, it felt like an eternity since I’d seen them and that they were given favorites to pick rather than choosing from their hearts. Maybe that’s not true, and I’m sure they still kept up with the season, but their involvement didn’t have the same feeling because they never rotated in and out during the season.

Cheer:

Adam Shankman is a wonderful addition to the judging panel. I didn’t mind him being a constant, I only minded that there was no new blood. You almost always knew what Nigel and Mary were going to say, so he was a breath of fresh air (especially at the beginning of the season). Adam is funny and honest (he called out choreographers for bad routines!) and you get the impression that he’ll actually hire the dancers he likes (i.e. when Noelle got cut, I was okay because I felt Adam wanted to work with her), so he’s a valuable part of the panel.

Jeer:

Shane Sparks and Alex DaSilva‘s arrests (both for sexual crimes related to their dance students) are not only damaging to the choreographer’s careers, but also haunt the dance community at large and threaten to harm SYTYCD’s image.

Cheer:

The Dizzy Feet Foundation and gala do wonderful things for the dance community, SYTYCD and for us, as it unites our favorite shows, dancers, choreographers, crews in a really positive mission. It raises awareness and gives our favorites work! We can help, too!

Jeer:

How many injuries did we have this season? Mia Michaels was rushed to the hospital at the beginning of the season. Then, Billy Bell had to drop out due to illness. Noelle was injured in the first competition show while Ellenore and Ashleigh were both hurt during the Top 8 week and Russell was injured in the finale. Did I forget anyone??

Cheer:

Despite the overly-produced and rushed feel of the season, despite all the injuries, we had a wonderful Top 20 this season. As John pointed out, they had a great mix of styles and backgrounds. We saw some consistent excellence (Jakob and Ellenore, namely) and some great growth arcs (arguably, everybody, but notably Kathryn and Russell, in my opinion). We had some “characters” to get behind this season, in Legacy and the DiLellos in particular.

Jeer:

America’s SYTYCD lost Mia Michaels this season and her absence was certainly felt. Our loss was apparently SYTYCD Canada’s gain, so while it’s good that she’s working within the SYTYCD family, there’s a great big gaping hole where she was in our shows.

Cheer:

Mia’s absence gave way to a ton of “new” choreographers this season. New to us, at least. Like Sean Cheesman, Jason Gilkison, Spencer Liff and a routine from Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden. We had more Wade Robson, more Stacey Tookey, more Mandy Moore and more Travis Wall routines, which seriously rocked. More Sonya routines, many of which blew our minds, like the “Tore My Heart” Oona - Tore My Heart - Single - Tore My Heart routine with Ellenore and Jakob.Ā  Hopefully, we’ll get to see special Mia routines, maybe one or two a season, in the future. I don’t want SYTYCD America to be completely devoid of Mia Michaels, but I’m glad we had so many standout choreographers, new and recurring, this season.

Jeer:

This season had some really awful costumes…

Cheer:

And some really amazing music. But these two things are pretty typical of all seasons, I suppose. šŸ™‚

Jeer:

No mention of a Season 6 tour! Not even on the finale show! What are they thinking? There had better be a tour, or I will seriously cry foul. I’m keeping my feelers out, y’all, and using my contacts, to see if/when the tour will be.

Cheer:

I’m glad they mentioned auditions for Season 7 because it sounds like it’ll be another summer season. So that means that we’ll either have two seasons a year, or we’ll go back to our beloved summer format (probably the former). SYTYCD keeps motoring on, which is good news. And again, we don’t have to wait several months till fall, sounds like.

Jeer:

Hell no to the Top 6! I hope Fox and SYTYCD realize they can never do this to us again. This was the worst idea ever and I suspect the results might have been significantly different, if we’d had a normal Top 4 finale. Not cool.

Cheer:

The Meet the Top 20 episode was the biggest stroke of genius and the best of all the new ideas and concepts we dealt with this season. I hope they *always* do this from now on. It was sublime to see all of the Top 20 dancing within their styles without fear of elimination. Some of the best dancing of the entire season happened in this very first episode, as evidenced by how many of the judges’ favorites in the finale show were from this very episode.

I think that’s all I’ve got. I’ve run out of steam. But I’m sure I’ve forgotten something you hated or loved, so let me know what you think.