Monday, August 25, 2008

AI Adds Fourth Judge To Panel

Songwriter Kara DioGuardi will be joining the American Idol judging panel. Unfortunately, she will not be replacing Randy Jackson but will be joining Randy, Simon and Paula. I suppose that means the chances of expanding the length of singing time to 2 minutes is out of the question now that there are four opinions to be heard. Sigh.

DioGuardi has previous judging experience, having been a judge/mentor on the short-lived singing competition The One (the same show Syesha did before Idol). I watched that show every once in a while when it was on, and I remember her to be a pretty decent judge. Let's just hope Randy's lack of vocabulary and Paula's crazy don't rub off on her.

Kara's songwriting credits include a bunch of Hilary Duff tunes, some Cheetah Girl songs, some Lindsay Lohan shit and the more universally accepted songs "Walk Away" by Kelly Clarkson, "Taking Chances" by Celine Dion and "Ain't No Other Man" by Christina Aguilera.

New DwtS Cast Revealed

Not only will we see 13 new celebrity contestants on next month's premiere of Dancing with the Stars, but we'll also see our first Dance crossover performer, as So You Think You Can Dance Season 3 finalist Lacey Schwimmer will join the DwtS cast as a professional.

Will this be the first season since season 2 that a non-athlete wins? The three athletes on the cast - two-time beach volleyball gold medalist Misty May-Treanor, 2000 track and field gold medalist Maurice Green and football player Warren Sapp - don't seem to be obvious front-runners, but you just never know.

Here's the full lineup, courtesty of People.com:

• Toni Braxton, singer, 40, and season one DWTS champ Alec Mazo
• Lance Bass, N'Sync singer, 29, and SYTYCD3 finalist Lacey Schwimmer
• Ted McGinley, actor ("Happy Days", "Married with Children"), 50, and Inna Brayer
• Cloris Leachman, actress ("Mary Tyler Moore", "Facts of Life", and many many more), 82, and Corky Ballas (aka Mark Ballas' father)
• Warren Sapp, former NFL star, 35, and Kym Johnson
• Rocco DiSpirito, chef, 41, and Karina Smirnoff
• Kim Kardashian, TV personality, 27, and reigning DWTS champ Mark Ballas
• Maurice Green, Olympic gold medalist track and field star, 34, and two-time DWTS champ Cheryl Burke
• Misty May-Treanor, Olympic gold medalist beach volleyball player, 31, and Maksim Chmerkovskiy
• Susan Lucci, Emmy-award losing winning soap opera actress, 61, and Tony Dovolani
• Jeffrey Ross, 42, comedian, and Edyta Sliwinska
• Cody Linley, 18, actor ("Hannah Montana"), and two-time DWTS champ Julianne Hough
• Brooke Burke, 36, TV personality ("Rock Star" host), and Derek Hough

You know that Susan Lucci will have a long run in this show because soap fans are very fanatic. And she's Susan Lucci. Julianne Hough has her fans and now the Hannah Montana tween fans, so they'll do really well. I expect Lance Bass to be one of the best celeb dancers. Not sure how people will react to Lacey, though. I think she's a great dancer, but she seemed to be a polarizing figure amongst SYTYCD fans. Kim Kardashian is probably even more polarizing than Lacey, though, so I don't think she'll last very long at all.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Memorable Olympic Moments So Far

I've been so engulfed in the Olympics the past week that I thought I'd compile a list of the Most Memorable Olympic Moments so far. Obviously Michael Phelps winning eight gold medals is the story of the Olympics, but since that's a series of moments I'll exclude it from here. But, like he does with everything, he kind of dominates this list as well.

Top 5 -

1. Comeback For The Ages
Trailing world-record holder Alain Bernard of France by nearly a body length heading into the last 50 meters of the 4x100 free relay, U.S. anchor Jason Lezak saved the day (and Michael Phelps' record hopes) by passing Bernard at the end and winning by 0.08 seconds. Lezak's relay split was 46.06, the fastest anchor leg ever. If Phelps does win his eight gold medals, he'll have Jason Lezak to thank.

2. Nastia Liukin Wins All-Around
U.S. gymnast Nastia Liukin's all-around victory was not only a win for herself and the U.S., but it was also a win for artistry and grace in the sport. With this code of points and scoring system rewarding difficulty above all else, it is encouraging to see that pretty gymnastics can still win. It was also great to see such a competitive meet where you had to hit to medal. You shouldn't be able to fall and still win a gold medal (coughPaulHammcough).

3.World's Fastest
Jamaica's Usain Bolt, who just recently began running the 100m, captured the gold medal in a world record time of 9.69 seconds. And what's even crazier is that he eased up towards the end and started celebrating with about a quarter of the race to go. He could have gone 9.5-something if he hadn't done that. INSANE.

4. Short Stroke Keeps Phelps' Record Hopes Alive
Michael Phelps won his seventh gold medal with a come-from-behind victory in the 100m fly. Serbia's Milorad Cavic blew the lead at the very end, gliding to the wall and coming up short while Phelps took an extra stroke and beat Cavic to the wall in a time of 50.58 to 50.59.

5. Alternates Lead U.S. To Gymnastics Bronze
Considered by many to be down and out after the Hamm brothers pulled out of the Olympics due to injuries, the U.S. men's gymnastics team, using two alternates, won the bronze medal. The U.S. had a chance to win silver, but its first two pommel horse performers had error-filled routines, putting the bronze in doubt. But Sasha Artemev, one of the two alternates, came through with a stunning, high-risk routine to secure the bronze.

And the Bottom 5 -

1. Senseless Murder
Right off the bat, tragedy struck when Todd and Barbara Bachman, whose son-in-law Hugh McCutcheon is the U.S. men's volleyball head coach, were stabbed by a Chinese man at the Drum Tower. Todd was killed and Barbara seriously wounded. McCutcheon's wife, 2004 Olympic volleyball player Elisabeth Bachman was at the scene but unharmed. The assailant later jumped from the tower to his death.

2. Medal Protest
After losing in the semifinals, Swedish Greco-Roman wrestler Ara Abrahamian staged a protest against the refereeing at the medal ceremony. Abrahamian took the medal off his neck, stepped off the podium and dropped his medal in the middle of the wrestling mat and walked away. He was later disqualified, stripped of his medal and tossed out of the Olympics.

3. Protecting A Lead When Behind
American boxer Rau'Shee Warren spent the last 35 seconds of his first match trying to protect a lead that he actually never had. Dancing around and not throwing any punches, Warren did not realize until the final seconds that he was trailing and not leading, but by then it was too late, and he ended up losing, 9-8.

4. It's Not Supposed To Bend That Way
Hungarian weighlifter Janos Baranyai turned his elbow inside out while trying to snatch 148kg. You only see that stuff from contortionists. Or poppers.

5. Under The Wall
With just seconds remaining in extra time, the Netherlands scored on a free kick under the jumping wall to salvage a 2-2 tie. A U.S. win would have put the team in the quarterfinals, but instead they lost their next game after left back Michael Orozco got a red card just three minutes into the game.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Please Don't Stop The Mavid!

Apparently, TPTB have shut down the Michael Johns/David Cook dance show during the Idol tour's finale of "Don't Stop The Music". Why? Because TPTB are humorless bastards is my guess.

Several fans have reported that Michael said he and Cook were sent a letter telling them to cut out the antics because it was disrespectful to the fans. Oh yeah, it's so disrespectful to give the fans a show and to show them a good time. What a crock of shit.

R.I.P. Mavid dance.

Here's a collection of the fun dancing by Michael Johns and Cook, compiled by Kristen8108 on YouTube:

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Joshua Is America's Favorite Dancer

Popper Joshua Allen was crowned "Ameriker's" (tm Cat Deeley) Favorite Dancer, beating out runner-up Twitch, third-place finisher Katee Shean and fourth-place finisher Courtney Galiano. Joshua wins $250,000 and a featured dance role in Step Up 3-D.

Like season 2 winner Benji Schwimmer, Joshua was never in the bottom 2 or 3 during his run on the show. And Joshua was challenged in ways no other dancers seemed to be, dancing in so many different styles outside of his specialty. He did two Hip-Hops, two Contemporaries, Broadway, Samba, West Coast Swing, Viennese Waltz, Bollywood, Rumba, Argentine Tango, Disco, Paso Doble, Lyrical Jazz, Russian Trepak and Jive. Wow. I'm exhausted just thinking about it. One of the judges called him an "everything dancer" on Wednesday's show. IV REAL. I've loved Joshua since his first audition, so I was so happy to see him win. After hearing how hard he had it growing up and how he worked in the studio to pay for his classes, I'm so pleased that he's winning half a mil.

Twitch was a CLASS ACT during the winner's announcement, as I knew he would be. Both of the guys looked so nervous while awaiting the announcement, but Twitch celebrated Joshua's win as if he himself had. I also noticed Twitch bowing down to Katee after she was eliminated. He's good people. I don't think he will be hurting for jobs after this show. He's a tremendous entertainer. And I do hope he comes back to choreograph for the show because Tabitha & Napoleon have obviously run out of good ideas, and Shane Sparks is no longer available.

(Speaking of Shane, that Top 20 hip-hop group dance was HOT! Gev rolling through the line of girls! And who knew Jamie was that good?! Too bad he got stuck w/ that crappy drop-trou routine in week one. It would have been good to have a partner dancer for the first few weeks!)

Katee did not go away empty-handed. In a surprise development, as the top female finisher, she was awarded $50,000. That's awesome. I always thought it was weird that you vote out one guy and one girl every week but that only one person could win. Katee was amazing in her routines tonight, especially the pas de deux with Will, where they nailed that one move that they missed the first time around. I thought it was telling that she danced so many of the favorite dances tonight (Bollywood, pas de deux, door dance with Twitch, No Air with Josh), although I suspect that one of them was probably subbed in (door dance) because Jessica couldn't dance tonight.

Courtney got to do two favorite dances - the rumba with Gev and the Sonya dance with Mark - before being eliminated first. Joshua also did two dances - the two with Katee. Twitch did three (hip-hop with Comfort, door dance, Viennese Waltz with Kherington). Also amongst the favorites was the Chelsie/Mark Bleeding Love hip-hop.

The judges also got into the act, with Mary Murphy dancing a Samba with Dmitry Chaplin and Nigel Lythgoe doing a tap routine with kids from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy. Past dancers came back to do a routine to "Don't Stop The Music" (my god, does 19E get a shitload of money every time they use this song on this show or Idol?!). Anya & Dmitry were the highlight of that routine. Wow, are those two smokin' hot, or what?! Amongst those also spotted in the dance were Melody and Ryan (S1); Benji, Travis, Ivan and an unrecognizable Allison (S2); Hok, Lauren, Dominic, Neil, Jamie (S3). This year's Top 20 also were in the routine, but they didn't do much but strut in at the end. Oh, and watching Anya & Dmitry dance really drives home the fact that this year's Latin dancers were really mediocre. And if Anya, Heidi or Lacey couldn't win this show, then Chelsie Hightower most certainly could not because those three really blow her away.

Some other highlights for me included the Top 5 guys doing the Five Guys Named Moe dance again, and in better costumes, no less!; Debbie Allen crackin' on Lil' C for his vocabulary; and some of the cool moves in the uber-creepy Wade Robson/Criss Angel bunny dance.

Tonight's music:
Season recap - "Wow" by Kylie Minogue, "The Time Of My Life" by David Cook
Top 20 hip-hop, choreographed by Shane Sparks - "Boom" by Sin feat. T-Pain
Katee/Joshua Bollywood - Dhoom Taana from the Om Shanti Om soundtrack
Courtney/Gev Rumba - Wishing On A Star by Rose Royce
Phillip Chbeeb/Robert Muraine popping battle - "Stronger" by Kanye West
Comfort/Twitch hip-hop - "Forever" by Chris Brown
Chelsie/Mark Hip-Hop - "Bleeding Love" by Leona Lewis
Mary/Dmitry Samba - "Baila, Baila" by Angela Via
Katee/Will Pas De Deux - "Imagine" by David Archuleta
Courtney/Mark Jazz - "The Garden" by Mirah
Courtney elimination - "It's Only Life" by Kate Voegele
Top 5 Guys - "Five Guys Named Moe" by Joe Jackson
Criss Angel Believe - "Homage To The Rabbits" by Eric Serra
Katee elimination - "From Where You Are" by Lifehouse
Nigel and Debbie Allen Dance Academy Tap - "Boogie Wonderland" by Earth, Wind & Fire
Katee/Twitch Contemporary - "Mercy" by Duffy
Jonas Brothers performance - "Burnin' Up"
Kherington/Twitch Viennese Waltz - "A New Day Has Come" by Celine Dion
Katee/Joshua Hip-Hop - "No Air" by Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown
SYTYCD Where Are They Now - "Hollywood Swinging" by Kool & The Gang
SYTYCD alumni - "Don't Stop The Music" by Rihanna

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

SYTYCD Top 4 Recap & Music

Everyone danced with each other, lots of tears, lots of sweat, and after the smoked cleared, I still can't decide who I want to win. I love all four of them - Courtney, Joshua, Katee and Twitch.

But based on tonight's show, I am leaning towards a Twitch win. He was the standout for me tonight on many levels, and while his dancing in the foxtrot was a little bit stiff at times, he made up for it with his personality and with his embodiment of the characters in each dance. He's an entertainer, and I think when it's all said and done, I'd rather be entertained than see perfect technique. Here's the thing; only one person can win. The winner isn't going to be doing foxtrots and waltzes after this show. The winner is going to dance in his/her specialty. The best dancer in his/her specialty this season, IMO, is Twitch. He has done some of the best solos I've seen on this show.

Joshua was a close second for me, but he did not end the show on a high note, struggling with that ridiculously demanding jive and then not pulling off the lift in the group dance. His solo, though? Great. And his personality, even better. He's darling. I would be thrilled if he won also. His body of work throughout the course of the season has been stellar; he's had to show the most versatility, doing pretty much every kind of dance there is. And with his background, I think this would be so great for him to win this.

Katee deserves to win as well. She is technically the best dancer on the show and hasn't mis-stepped once, except for that plodding West Coast Swing. She has been terrific in every dance. The only thing is that she also hasn't been challenged much outside of her genre. And her solos are just okay. Her partner dances tonight, though, were so pretty. She was definitely a standout in all three dances.

Courtney has fought and clawed her way to the finale, and I'd be okay with her winning too, but at the same time I'd be more than a little "WTF?!" if she did win. She was the weakest of the four tonight, although her solos all season have been the best amongst the girls. She has a great personality and seems like a great girl, though. Her tears after her solo got to me. And I'm a cynical wench! But whose puppies did she kick in costuming to get stuck with those three atrocious outfits?!

As far as the actual dances go, I loved everything about the Russian Trepak, from the pre-dance video, to the tricks (holy straddle jumps and pirouettes, Joshua!) to the posturing during the judges' comments. That was probably the most entertaining bit I've ever seen on this show. The Wade lyrical was beautiful. Katee and Joshua are just brilliant together. And was it just me, or was Joshua mimicing the foxes dance when he and Katee met with Wade? If so, hee! The foxtrot was pretty, and that lift was great. I also loved the Bond-ing of Twitch. He nailed that accent.

I won't say much about the Broadway other than HATED IT. The hip-hop? Napoleon and Tabitha are so hit-and-miss. Sometimes they create incredible routines (No Air, Mark/Comfort detention), sometimes their routines are incredibly lame (Rayven/Jamie number in week one, Twitch/Chelsie conductor routine). Twitch and Courtney's hip-hop tonight was just ok. It was disappointing because you've got two really good hip-hop dancers, but they weren't given that good of a showcase. The jive was too demanding, especially for two non-ballroom dancers. I did like the round-the-world, though.

I'm really excited to see the finale tomorrow night. I'm looking forward to seeing all the favorite dances, plus the past dancers from this season and prior seasons. Oh, and that little matter of crowning a winner. As someone said on the show tonight, though, they're all winners. :)

Tonight's song list:
Courtney/Twitch - Hip-Hop choreographed by Tabitha & Napoleon ("Church" by T-Pain)
Courtney solo - "They Weren't There" by Missy Higgins
Katee/Joshua - Lyrical choreographed by Wade Robson ("Slow Dancing In A Burning Room" by John Mayer
Katee/Courtney - Broadway choreographed by Tyce Diorio ("The Trolley Song" by Rufus Wainwright)
Twitch solo - "It Was All In Your Mind" by Wade Robson
Joshua/Twitch - Russian Trepak by Youri Nelzine ("Trepak" from Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker Suite)
Katee solo - "Hide and Seek" by Imogen Heap
Katee/Twitch - Foxtrot choreographed by Tony Meredith and Melanie LaPatin ("Feeling Good" by Michael Buble)
Joshua solo - "(Not Just) Knee Deep" by Funkadelic
Courtney/Joshua - Jive choreographed by Jason Gilkison ("The Dirty Boogie" by The Brian Setzer Orchestra
Group dance - choreographed by Mia Michaels ("Hallelujah" by The Vitamin String Quartet)

Mark Has A Bad Day On CI

Either the phone lines were down in Newfoundland or the people finally came to their senses, sending Mark Day home during Tuesday's Canadian Idol Top 7 results show. The divalicious singer had been riding hometown support throughout the competition but was voted out this week after a karaoke-ish performance of "Bleeding Love" by Leona Lewis.

Joining Mark in the bottom 3 were two big surprises - first-time seal-dwellers and crowd/judges' favorites Earl Stevenson and Theo Tams. I'm pretty shocked at Theo being in the bottom because he's been outstanding throughout. I'm going to blame that one on voter complacency. Earl's been pretty much a mystery to me musically, save one or two really good performances, but I thought he had a bigger fanbase.

So the only ones left who have never been in the bottom are, miraculously, Mitch MacDonald and Drew Wright. I'm so dumbfounded by that because they certainly aren't the second-coming of David Cook and David Archuleta, neither of whom were ever in danger of going home. They've had some good performances, sure, but never at a consistent level like Theo or Kalan Porter. This season seems to be impossible to predict.

Next week Simple Plan mentors for Canadian Rock week.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

2008 Teen Choice Awards

The Teen Choice Awards will never be confused with any serious industry award, especially when you have, for example, Channing Tatum winning for Favorite Actor in a Drama, or the Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus winning just about every music category, Lauren Conrad winning for the third-straight year, or the movie Meet Dave being nominated for anything other than a Razzie.

The tweens definitely ruled this show, and their choices were Gossip Girl and the Jonas Brothers (6 awards each), Chris Brown (4 awards) and Miley Cyrus (3 awards). David Cook won another award, one much less cherished than the American Idol crown, I'm sure, as Choice TV Male Reality/Variety Star. David Archuleta "won" the award for Most Fanatic Fans. I'm not so sure that is such a good thing.

The show had a big production over a dance-off between YouTube sensations M&M Cru (Miley and her friend Mandy) and ACDC (Jon Chu and Adam Sevani). Yeah, I tend to avoid any Miley Cyrus news, so I had no clue. You can read more here. Anyway, ACDC had Jabbawockeez and Chris Brown in their routine. It should be Game Over right there. But, again, you put voting into the hands of screaming tweenies, and all hell breaks loose. Well, that and the fact that Miley Cyrus was hosting the show, so they wouldn't let her lose even if crickets were chirping when they asked for applause for her group. They would've just pumped in noise on the broadcast and no one would know better.

But really, Miley's group couldn't even outdance little Cruz Beckham, who went from shyly hiding behind Daddy Becks during his acceptance speech to busting out a full breakdancing routine on stage as they were leaving! He's darling. Oh yeah, and Cruz is too.



2008 Teen Choice Awards Winners
Choice Movie Action Adventure: 'The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian'
Choice Movie Drama: 'Step Up 2: The Streets'
Choice Movie Chick Flick: '27 Dresses'
Choice Movie Romantic Comedy: 'What Happens in Vegas'
Choice Movie Comedy: 'Juno'
Choice Movie Horror/Thriller: 'I Am Legend'
Choice Summer Movie Action Adventure: 'Hancock'
Choice Summer Movie Comedy: 'Get Smart'
Choice Movie Actor Drama: Channing Tatum, 'Stop-Loss'
Choice Movie Actress Drama: Keira Knightley, 'Atonement'
Choice Movie Actress Action Adventure: Rachel Bilson, 'Jumper'
Choice Movie Actor Comedy: Ashton Kutcher, 'What Happens in Vegas'
Choice Movie Actress Comedy: Ellen Page, 'Juno'
Choice Movie Actor Horror/Thriller: Will Smith, 'I Am Legend'
Choice Movie Actress Horror/Thriller: Jessica Alba, 'The Eye'
Choice Movie Villain: Johnny Depp, 'Sweeney Todd'
Choice Movie Breakout Female: Ellen Page, 'Juno'
Choice Movie Breakout Male: Drake Bell, 'Superhero Movie'
Choice TV Show Drama: 'Gossip Girl'
Choice TV Show Action Adventure: 'Heroes'
Choice TV Show Comedy: 'Hannah Montana'
Choice TV Reality Dance: 'America's Best Dance Crew'
Choice TV Reality Music Competition: 'American Idol'
Choice TV Celebrity Reality: 'The Hills'
Choice Summer TV Show: 'The Secret Life of the American Teenager'
Choice TV Actor Drama: Chad Michael Murray, 'One Tree Hill'
Choice TV Actress Drama: Blake Lively, 'Gossip Girl'
Choice TV Actress Action Adventure: Hayden Panettiere, 'Heroes'
Choice TV Actor Comedy: Steve Carrell, 'The Office'
Choice TV Actress Comedy: Miley Cyrus, 'Hannah Montana'
Choice TV Breakout Show: 'Gossip Girl'
Choice TV Breakout Star Female: Blake Lively, 'Gossip Girl'
Choice TV Breakout Star Male: Chace Crawford, 'Gossip Girl'
Choice TV Male Reality/Variety Star: David Cook, 'American Idol'
Choice TV Female Reality/Variety Star: Lauren Conrad, 'The Hills'
Choice TV Villain: Ed Westwick, 'Gossip Girl'
Choice Music Single: Jonas Brothers, 'When You Look Me in the Eyes'
Choice Hook-Up: Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown, 'No Air'
Choice Music Male Artist: Chris Brown
Choice Music Female Artist: Miley Cyrus
Choice Music R'n'B Artist: Chris Brown
Choice Breakout Group: Jonas Brothers
Choice Music Love Song: Jonas Brothers, 'When You Look Me in the Eyes'
Choice Music R'n'B Track: Chris Brown, 'Forever'
Choice Music Rap/Hip-Hop Track: Lil Mama featuring T-Pain and Chris Brown, 'Shawty Get Loose'
Choice Summer Song: Jonas Brothers, 'Burnin' Up'
Choice Male Hottie: Jonas Brothers
Choice Female Hottie: Vanessa Hudgens
Choice Red Carpet Fashion Icon Female: Carrie Underwood
Choice Red Carpet Fashion Icon Male: Jonas Brothers
Choice Comedian: Adam Sandler
Choice Male Athlete: David Beckham
Choice Female Athlete: Shawn Johnson
Choice Action Sports Male: Ryan Sheckler
Do Something Award: Chad Bullock
Choice Most Fanatic Fans: David Archuleta
Choice MySpacer: Ryan Sheckler

Monday, August 04, 2008

Melissa Lawson Wins Nashville Star

Thirty-two year-old mother of five Melissa Lawson was crowned this year's Nashville Star, defeating Hispanic-American Gabe Garcia in the finale. And the only reason I am categorizing them as such is because the show beat us over the head with it and probably cast them for precisely those reasons. Just as they cast Coffey for being a rare African-American country singer, or whats-his-name for being a pretty boy model or whats-his-other-name for being a Navy guy. Almost everyone fit into this nice little demographic/category that made for what the NBC execs thought was good TV, whether or not they were actually good country singers or not. NBC latching onto this show probably ruined it for good.

Melissa, who leaned more Adult Contemporary than country on the show, wins a recording contract with Warner Brothers Nashville and a chance to perform at the Olympics. She performed the winner's single "What If It All Goes Right" at the show's closing.

Runner-up Gabe, meanwhile, got pretty much brushed aside after the announcement. No round of applause or recognition for him from host Billy Ray Cyrus, or from Melissa, for that matter. And these people do not know how to stage finales. Billy Ray was AWKWARD (as usual), they didn't even have real fireworks, just video fireworks, and the show ended with Billy Ray asking Melissa how she felt. Amateurs.

British Invasion On Canadian Idol

Tom Jones mentored British Hits night on Canadian Idol, and it's not unsual to say that a few singers gave some standout performances, while a few others gave some karaoke bar-worthy performances that may or may not put them in danger because this show is really all about whose hometown can vote the most.

The standouts:
Drew Wright - "Creep" by Radiohead
Tom Jones gave Drew some great advice about zoning in on what he's all about. That's been his problem all season for me - he's been all over the place musically. But if this is the real Drew, sign me up! I like the new look a lot, and his vocals were ridiculous tonight. Not only was that glory note insane, but it seemed effortless.

Theo Tams - "You Had Me" by Joss Stone
I've been making fun of Mark for singing diva songs all the time, but I shouldn't leave Theo out because that boy is always singing songs by female artists. But Theo just makes it work every time out, and you don't think about who originally sang it because he brings his own thing to each song. This week, he brought a show and sold the heck out of it (a few awkward stage movements aside). Loved that growl in his voice.

Mitch MacDonald - "Jealous Guy" by John Lennon
I think I was so glad that he didn't pick "Imagine" that I probably enjoyed this more than I normally would. But honestly, I actually did think Mitch did a nice job with this song. Ironically enough, while the judges didn't like this but liked most of everything else he's done all year, this was probably my favorite performance of his.

Mookie Moris - "Lola" by The Kinks
I really enjoyed this, but I think Mookie might be hitting the seal again despite (or maybe because of) the judges' slightly OTT praise. There were times where the backup singers were drowning him out, and I think I heard the faux-Brit accent again.

Karaoke Hell:
Mark Day - "Bleeding Love" by Leona Lewis
Oh my word. The diva songs are back! I think Mark made a big mistake in covering such a popular current song. It's too easy to make the comparisons, especially when you don't do much to change the arrangement. He didn't even sing it all that well; some of his notes were off. This was pretty much a karaoke performance. Nothing original or impressive whatsoever.

Amberly Thiessen - "Put Your Records On" by Corinne Bailey Rae
I would have thought this would have been another great choice for her voice, but she struggled a little bit with those high notes. She did add more of a performance quality this time, so I give her props for that, but it was total karaoke. She did absolutely nothing original to it, and I didn't think she deserved that tongue bath.

Do. Not. Get. It.:
Earl Stevenson - "Change The World" by Eric Clapton
That little sing-songy sing-along that Earl took us on with his arm waving and ridiculous howling at the end really just murdered the sentimentality of that song. Ugh. Naturally, the judges loved it.

Mark really needs to go, and hopefully last week's bottom 3 showing means that the time is coming soon (meaning tomorrow). Torontonian Mookie is probably going to have to worry each and every week because of his lack of hometown support. I think the other bottom 3'er will be either Mitch or Amberly.

Dancers Down!

People.com is reporting that two of the Top 4 finalists on So You Think You Can Dance collapsed during rehearsals on Saturday and were hospitalized and released. No names were released, but it was stated that both were severely dehydrated. Rehearsals were cancelled on Saturday and Sunday but were set to continue on Monday.

According to the article, the dancers have been working super long hours.
“Leading up to the finale, the dancers have been putting in 10 to 12 hour rehearsals a day, because “they want it so bad,” says Mary Murphy, adding “so, they keep pushing themselves and pushing themselves and not letting anybody know that, ‘Hey, I’m running on empty,’ and then it catches up on them and then they collapse.”
With all the dancing they've been doing this year (at least 2 dances each since, what, Top 14 week?), this shouldn't come as a big surprise. But you'd think they would have learned from past years' injuries with Donyelle and Lacey and, I think, Jamie.

While I'm really curious to know who went to the hospital, I'm glad they are not releasing the names. The conspiracy theorists would have a field day no matter who it was, and it could shed doubt as to whether or not the person who ends up winning really won on his/her own merit or if the hospitalization helped votes.

Best wishes to all four dancers - Joshua, Twitch, Katee and Courtney!