I can see that this is going to be a really interesting third season of the Fox show "So You Think You Can Dance." Through the wonders of TIVO, I got caught up on the last 12-hours of show last night in about three hours. I cried 2-3 times already, and applauded at the TV like an idiot.
The highlight for me so far was watching Lacey Schwimmer and Kameron Bink just kill it dancing this intense and difficult contemporary piece by choreographer Mia Michaels. Lacey is definitely going to be a force to contend with for all the other competitors, given her background as a "swing and latin champ and a professional crumper." Ha!
I enjoyed the Broadway and the slow waltz pieces, which were dead gorgeous. The salsa, hip-hop, disco, and tangos were kind of all just mediocre. But given that this is the first time that most of these dancers have done partner work, largely outside of their own disciplines, with only a brief amount of time to learn the routines, it’s amazing that they pull anything off that’s decent at all. I can’t imagine the pressure they must be under to perform.
I love how the goal of the show is not to embarass or ridicule the dancers but more to encourage and critique in largely constructive ways. For me, the best critique is, "I’ve seen you dance, and I know you can do better. So show me next time." Nigel Lythgoe, one of the judges and co-producer of the show, is particularly good about that, and seems to be somewhat softened this season compared to past ones.