Dancers actually get eliminated this time, and the judges make a questionable decision

By Darren Franich
June 24, 2011 at 07:56 AM EDT
James Dimmock/FOX
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Has any guest judge ever had so much fun on So You Think You Can Dance as Debbie Reynolds? Your regular performance night recapper Adam B. Vary already rhapsodized over Justice Reynolds’ time in the hot seat, but even with just a couple minutes of screen time on last night’s elimination episode, darling Debbie strolled away with the whole show. When Cat asked her if she was enjoying herself, Reynolds couldn’t stop talking about how much she loved the show: “It’s all about dance, which I’ve done my whole life.” What a classy dame. (Fun fact: In the same week that she guest-judged SYTYCD, Reynolds sold Marilyn Monroe’s subway dress. That’s called multitasking.)

After last week’s non-elimination episode, four dancers had to go home last night. That meant six heads went on the chopping block. Missy and Wadi’s disappointing cha cha won over viewers even less than it won over the judges; Iveta and Nick’s Bollywood number Bolly-could-not earn them any votes; and even though the judges gushed over Ryan and Ricky’s performance, they also wound up in the bottom three. Hmm, so two of the judges’ favorites were in danger, and the judges could only save two people? Truly, it would have taken a genius to figure this one out. But I am not a genius, so I was pretty sure Ryan was going home.

(While the dancers prepared their life-saving routines, our friends at Gatorade punished us for even thinking about Powerade by sending an emissary into the dancers’ kitchens to chastise them about keeping tasty snacks in the refrigerator. Yeesh, who knew a company that makes drinks colored like Gummi Bears could be so snippy?)

I thought Wadi rocked the house with his Major Lazer performance, especially since he was pretty much the only dancer to actually end his routine perfectly in time with the countdown, in a praying pose. Missy just seemed manic, and Nick tapped his way into obscurity, but give Iveta credit for a spirited routine. I know Iveta might not have technically been the best dancer, but since I technically don’t know anything about dancing, I can say scientifically that she brought the most personality to her routine. At least, she brought more than Ryan, who danced a meh routine to “Moving Mountains” by Usher, which put me to sleep until I woke up and then fell back to sleep when I realized she was still dancing. That left Ricky, who nailed a performance set to “Riot Rhythm” by Sleigh Bells.

NEXT: Saving private Ryan

I was secretly hoping that Debbie Reynolds would get to hand out the judges’ decision, just because hearing her say anything negative about anyone would sort of be like watching Frosty the Snowman descend into the world of underground kickboxing. But no, Nigel told Missy, “I don’t believe there is anything you’re doing we can fault,” which was code for, “You’re going home.” He told Iveta that he would always remember “the routine with Pasha,” which was code for, “You peaked too early.” And then he told Ryan, “You didn’t pick the best routine tonight,” which for some reason was code for “You’re great!” Yes, Ryan was saved — unjustly, in most of your opinions. We’ll see if she can earn the judges’ confidence next week.

The guys’ elimination was a little bit more spot-on I think. Nigel forthrightly told Wadi that he had had bad luck with the dance selection: “You haven’t been given time yet to show what you can do.” If Nigel had an American accent, this might have sounded hopeful, but in Britishese, that was a fatalistic statement. He told Nick that he had a twinkle in his eye, which is the kind of thing Ray Winstone says in movies right before he shot someone in the face. That left Ricky, who Nigel praised for actually dancing like his life was on the line. Unsurprisingly, the judges voted to save Ricky.

Also, LMFAO.

So I guess it’s so long, Missy! Farewell, Iveta! Auf Wiedersehen, Wadi! Goodbye, Ricky! I’d say that Iveta was robbed just a little bit, but that might be because she specifically decided to dress up like a Roger Moore James Bond villainess for her last routine. Dance fans, what did you think about the quadruple elimination night? Do you think Ryan and Ricky deserved the save? When did Gatorade become so lame? And, in the immortal words of Cat Deeley, “You can buy an awful lot of shoes with that!”

Follow Darren on Twitter: @EWDarrenFranich

Nigel Lythgoe, Mary Murphy, and the viewers at home crown America’s Favorite Dancer.
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