Can you believe school is almost out for the summer? The Academy just opened its doors last week, and already it’s time to send everyone out into the world. For 10 finalists, this could be the Best Summer Ever — but we can’t meet our top 10 until we say goodbye to 30 more dancers, and all of them are kids with hopes and dreams. After this week’s tear-stained episode, I have two suggestions. First: that the top 10’s stage debut (in two weeks!) features HAPPY CHOREOGRAPHY ONLY. Travis Wall, you magnificent heartbreaker, I’m looking at you. Second: that we maybe just put the kids on a bus to Disneyland, give them a nice allowance, and stop filming them. They don’t need the pressure. The All-Stars are the most exciting part of this season, and I would gladly watch a Real World-style series about 10 of them living and dancing together, offering kids life advice and finishing each other’s cereal.
No? We’re sticking with crying kids? To the tears, then.
Team Kathryn: After Warren Carlyle’s Broadway routine and Tabitha and Napoleon’s hip-hop number, Team Kathryn is down to three: Avery, Quinn, and Tate. Who better to test them than Travis? The other choreographers had the kids partner up across team lines, but the only partner in this Travis Wall routine is your emotions, so Team Kathryn takes the stage as a unit. Contemporary is their element; they all bring it. But one of them brings it just a little bit less, and can we all just admit that it’s Avery? She’s very good at the dance that she’s doing, but that dance is about a half-count off from the one Quinn and Tate are doing. Just a half-count. Juuuuust a little.
But Kathryn “goes with her gut” and sends Quinn home — and just as we were getting to know her! Too little too late with that intro package, SYTYCD. Quinn’s mom comforts her by telling her that she’s going to work harder than ever, which seems like a terrible pep talk to give anyone at a time like this. Now is the time for ice cream and tears, Quinn’s mom. Avery, whose montage is impressive, lives to dance another day, but it was always going to end here: In the final eliminations, Tate goes to the top 10.
Team Sasha: Team Sasha really doesn’t get a lot of screen time today, but Team Sasha doesn’t need screen time. Team Sasha is playing a long con and waiting in the shadows until it’s time to pounce. We the viewers are in the palm of Team Sasha’s hand. When you’ve forgotten about her, she’s already won. Team Sasha is Jordan, by the way. Thank goodness.
Team Fik-Shun: Fik-Shun goes with mini-me Kida, who also gets minimal camera time — and this time, that’s not enough. Show me this child’s contemporary routine! If I’m going to cry, I want to cry about Kida!
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Team Jenna: Like the kids (and, honestly, every single one of her fellow All-Stars), Jenna is a bundle of emotions this week. After letting go of Lev in the hip-hop round and Dougie in contemporary, she’s down to Jake and Joshua, who are both making some interesting hair choices that I think should earn them some lucrative pomade deals down the line. Joshua brings Jenna to tears with his interpretation of Travis’ routine, but if the cumulative 10 seconds we see of each performance are any indication, Jake is the cleaner technical dancer. Jake is on to the top 10, and he’s keeping in touch with Joshua whether Joshua likes it or not. I just hope Joshua isn’t haunted by that time he told Jenna that he could partner her because he’s danced with “larger girls” before. Walk it off, Joshua.
NEXT: What is Robert thinking?