SYTYCD Season 9: Top 14 Power Rankings

With two dancers eliminated, the below Power Rankings will just include the dance that have dancers that were not eliminated first (focusing more on the partner that was not eliminated) and any dances where both dancers were eliminated I would put in my thoughts after the Power Rankings. I have already posted my instant thoughts as well as polls for you guys to peruse.

At the end of post I will include the usual table ranking the individual dancers as well:
1. Witney Carson & Chehon Wespi-Tschopp – Contemporary
Between the two contemporary routines (oddly enough with both couples including a ballroom female partner), this I felt was the stronger of the two. I really loved the chemistry between these two despite Witney being so young and she has so much trust in Chehon when she falls onto his foot and during the lifts throughout this routine. There were moments that I felt there could have been better timing for emphasis but at the same time that is only by tenths or hundredths of a second. During the moment where there is total silence I felt that there could have been a better build up but that might be a little of the choreography and a little of the dancers. All in all this routine took my breath away regardless.

1. Eliana Girard & Cyrus Spencer – Hip Hop
As I mentioned in my “Instant Thoughts” post prior, I believed that NappyTabs did a smart thing here in building a routine closer to Cyrus’ animator / robotics skill set and added Eliana into it for emphasis. Eliana was able to adapted well to this routine and Cyrus was able to grow and pick up the choreography for the most part. These two have something that most of the other couples have been sorely lacking that is connection and chemistry… even when they are struggling in a routine in any capacity they still manage to keep the fun and joy on their faces no matter what. Considering everything, I think this is a very good and well balanced pairing and I really hope that Cyrus starts picking up steam in the coming weeks because I don’t really know if anyone could match Eliana in performance value at this point in time.

3. Lindsay Arnold & Cole Horibe – Contemporary
The lighting, the routine, the dancers… this really came together rather well and I was glad. Last week they weren’t as strong together in the hip hop routine, to the point that Cole outshone Lindsay. In this routine I still felt that Cole outshone Lindsay as well, however I was able to appreciate Lindsay’s style in other dance styles a lot more this time around because of her hair being in her way. How sad is that? In any case, Lindsay has a bit of maturity to do while Cole just needs to keep doing what he’s doing because quite honestly as long as he keeps this up he’ll be fine.

4. Tiffany Maher & George Lawrence Jr – Hip Hop
To be honest, I didn’t want to love the routine, I really didn’t, but dammit it was fun and cute if not perfect or anywhere near it. Granted both George and Tiffany were forced out of their comfort zones with this dance number and they played their characters well. However there were a lot of moments where I felt that they disconnected in the steps and they just weren’t in sync… so they faltered a bit, but the characterization was still there for the most part.

5. Amelia Lowe & Will Thomas – Jazz
Once again Amelia and Will (both contemporary dancers) pulled a dance style that isn’t a far stretch from their own (they previously pulled a Pop-Jazz and Contemporary) and once again they did well… Well duh. What makes this routine different from the previous two was that I simply didn’t remember the routine in the slightest. I had to think about it and rewatch it in order to gain a sense of what I was thinking, and quite honestly there is nothing to latch on to in my opinion. This was a quirky routine for two quirky characters but really… I don’t remember much… do you?

6. Janelle Issis & Dareian Kujawa – ChaCha
I’ll admit that this couple has been struggling a bit the past few weeks but considering the styles they have pulled in the past three weeks (Afro-Jazz, Lyrical Hip Hop, ChaCha) all of which are out of their individual styles (Belly Dancing and Contemporary) I have to say of all the couples I am most impressed by this pairings tenacity. I do have to agree with the judges their chemistry and connection was definitely lacking and they really need to work on their feet and technique but I hope that they clear things up soon because personally I want to see them continue on. This routine is suppose to be fun and flirty and I thought there were elements of fun and they pulled off the tricks rather seamlessly. Janelle I felt flirted a bit but she was more to the audience than to her partner which I kind of blame on her dance style. However, in my opinion, they did a far better job than the other ballroom related routine of the evening in my opinion, but they still have a lot of work ahead of them.

7. Audrey Case & Matthew Kazmierczak – Salsa
I don’t even know where to begin. I can’t even say that it wasn’t a “bad” routine because it was. Salsa is suppose to be fun and flirty with a simmer of a fire in there for good measure and it was just cool and slow and they weren’t connected, there were times when they weren’t in sync and there were a missed steps here and there by both parties involved, the tricks didn’t work either. Individually they are really strong dancers and with the previous two routines (Jazz and Contemporary) they did exceptionally well. However, that’s the catch: Matthew is a Contemporary dancer while Audrey is a Jazz dancer so it would make sense that they would excel in a Contemporary and Jazz routine. So when they are given a routine that is out of both of their comfort zones, struggling comes pre-installed, however to struggle to the extent that they did… I think the first two routines would give them the votes to move on, but honestly I know I am in the minority when I say that I am just not impressed by this couple at all.

Amber Jackson & Brandon Mitchell – Jazz
As I mentioned in my “Instant Thoughts” post, this is a pairing that should have been together from the start. I mean come on! Brandon brought out more of Amber’s personality than Nick did and they really connected together far better than they did with their previous partners. I was looking at my previous “Power Rankings” post where I included my thoughts of the new pairing:

A contemporary dancer and a stepper, this is going to be an interesting pairing. Brandon is a very strong personality who has been characterizing and emoting well in his routines thus far while Amber hasn’t nor has she been able to connect with her partner. Depending on the dance style they will have next week will help gauge how this couple will do.

Well they connected and they had chemistry and this was a jazz routine which meant this was something that Amber could really have sunk her teeth into and Brandon did an amazing job considering he is a stepper… he didn’t seem to struggle at all and he was right there for her in this routine. I would agree with the judges that if they hadn’t been placed in the Bottom Six, then they would have had the votes to continue through.

Going back to my Power Rankings last week:

[…] I don’t think Amber is going to last much longer than a week, perhaps two. She didn’t really connect well with Nick and as thus the audience is left feeling cold and the chance of them picking up the phone for her is not very high… still.. we’ll see how it will work out come next week.

Now I know there were quite a few people that disagreed with my perceptions of Amber, but honestly looking at who landed in the Bottom Six dancers I really wasn’t surprised in the least. As for the week before, I placed Brandon in the bottom three back then… but that was more due to his initial partner as opposed to his new partner. In fact I was going back to my thoughts from the Meet the Top 20 episode and realized that I was raving about Brandon back then but didn’t say a word about Amber. So for Amber I can’t say that this was a surprise, but honestly I would loved to have seen Brandon continue on, but looking at the Bottom Three guys I think the judges didn’t really have much of a choice when you looked at the solos performed.

At the same time when the judges mentioned who they wanted to perform solos I instinctively figured that they were planning to keep Lindsay and George… and honestly I think that was rather unfair of the judges to do that where the audience could kind of figured out who would be saved right off the bat like that, but I digress.

Below, just like the previous weeks is my ranking of the dancers, in no real particular order:

Witney Carson
Eliana Girard
Cole Horibe
Chehon Wespi-Tschopp
Amelia Lowe
Tiffany Maher
Will Thomas
George Lawrence II
Lindsay Arnold
Janelle Issis
Audrey Case
Matthew Kazmierczak
Dareian Kujawa
Cyrus Spencer