Last week before the Top 10 and this whole crazy ride shakes itself up again! Cat's looking gorgeous and Nigel and Mary are joined by Sonya Tayeh and special celebrity judge Jesse Tyler Ferguson, who qualifies because he's gay, I guess. (Hey, I'm not hating. If I ever hope to be a special celebrity judge on this show, that'll be my only qualification too.)
Sasha and Alexander: Paso Doble (Tony Meredith and Melanie LaPatin)
Melanie LaPatin, you guys! First time this season! I feel like this is the year she's finally eclipsed Tony as the dominant choreographer in this pair. Also, have you been reading her weekly critiques of the show on EW? Smart stuff with no punches pulled. Ger her on the panel already! So you know the deal with the paso doble. It's the bullfight-y battle dance, but in Sasha and Alexander's hands, it's a little slow and not as powerful as it needs to be. Kinda sloppy, kinda off-balance. She's not blowing him off the floor the way she usually does, but that's more to her detriment than his benefit this week. It's all a bit watery, to be honest, making two subpar weeks in a row for Sasha now. Of course, the judges all say they loved it, with Mary even saying that Alexander had a "breakthrough." To his credit, Alexander waits to mention that Tony and Melanie's routine was dedicated to their cancer-stricken friend until AFTER the critique.
Jordan and Tadd: Contemporary (Travis Wall)
Travis says the routine is about "women who take advantage of weak men," which translated to Jordan playing a vulture, with Tadd as a man dying in the desert. Jordan is a dead ringer for Sonya in this feathers-n-leather getup, while Tadd gets to use his acrobatics as he writes around on the ground, them leaps through the air. Jordan stalks him like a bird of prey, and it's all very animalistic and unhinged. I love it. They fight, Tadd wins (he snaps her neck), it's great. Holy shit, Jordan's legs, you guys. Holy shit, Tadd's chest and shoulders. Jesse makes a crack about the "classic boy-meets-vulture" story, and Sonya says fucked up stories like this makes her cry. Tadd walks away with the bulk of the praise as all the judges loved it.
Ryan and Ricky: Broadway (The Dreamy Spencer Liff)
The idea is that Ryan is a movie star (oh brother), in the Audrey Hepburn style, and she so entrances smooth-guy Ricky that she leaps off the movie poster as he walks on by. The result is nice, but a little dull. A routine like this this requires gallons of personality, and I'm not sure these two have it. Ricky is certainly smooth, though. Jesse likens the routine to something danced "underwater" and says it was "muted." Mary says they could've done so much more. Nigel laments that, if they were bottom 3 last week, when they were pretty great, what will happen to them this week, when they've at last started out not so great.