Mary is appropriately tongue-twisted and refers to the "Nommy-Eminated" Stacey Tookey and says this is her year. She also marvels at the difficulty levels of what Chehon is doing. Sometimes Chehon struggles with his emotions, but not here. Okay, not to harp but: so what is Cyrus doing better than Chehon right now, besides striving? And striving is great! But let's be real here: Chehon is miles past what Cyrus can do, is just as dominant in his own style (ballet), and has been weak in certain ballroom routines but hasn't been bailed out by choreography nearly as much.
Eliana and Tiffany: Broadway (Ray Leeper)
When the girls enter the rehearsal studio, Eliana squeals as she sees it: a pole! Never before has someone seemed more wholesomely enthused to dance on a stripper pole. Leeper says this routine is bringing "burlesque to Broadway," though I am saddened that this promise doesn't end in dancing to music from the Burlesque soundtrack. Instead, it's "When You're Good to Mama" from the 1996 cast of Chicago. God, the lesbian subtext in this song is somehow even stronger when it's not being sung by Queen Latifah. You figure that out. So obviously Eliana outshines Tiffany here, as she wraps her leg around the top of the pole at the end and supports her entire body weight with it.
Clearly, that's going to earn a standing O from Nigel, who's got the vapors so much he can't even judge right away. Rob (who directed Chicago the movie, of course) says he's trying to imagine Queen Latifah doing that, which: hey! Low blow. Mary thought it was fun and sassy, while Nigel is all, "It's so hard to think of anything to say that won't get me in trouble." Of course, he follows that up by saying the last time he saw something like that, he was with Randy Jackson, so there's that. Oh God, Nigel and Randy Jackson at a strip club. Throwing $20s at girls and getting lap dances. Are you puking yet?
Cyrus's recap montage tells us he only auditioned to showcase his animation style for America, and it all just snowballed from there. His highest point in Vegas were his solos, duh, while his lowest point was Sonya's round, where he felt like he was letting down her choreography. On stage now, he delivers another animatronic solo that the judges seem to think was above and beyond what he's done before. Afterwards, Cat sends us to commercial with, "After the break, Tiffany's off the pole and back for a solo." Deeley, you rascal.