August 6th, 2009
08:05 AM ET

Jeanine steals the show on 'Dance'

Wednesday night's episode of "So You Think You Can Dance" offered up plenty of surprises as the final four dancers performed for an audience of 3,000 in Hollywood's Kodak Theatre, the biggest of which was the emergence of a dark horse as a real contender.

dance wednesday

Here's a look at each of the remaining dancers and their chances of taking the big prize of "America's Favorite Dancer" Thursday night:

Brandon Bryant: He immediately became the front-runner after Janette was voted off two weeks ago, and hasn't missed a beat since. Last week's solo was probably his biggest moment so far, he did another exemplary solo this week and he was in two of the most memorable couples dances of the night: the extraordinary Broadway routine with Kayla and the smoking paso doble with Jeanine. Looking back on the season as a whole, there are just too many high points for him to count. Judge Mary Murphy warned him about his lack of confidence, and that may be the only thing standing between him and victory. Well, maybe not the only thing (see below)... Odds of winning: 3-to-2

Jeanine Mason: Not only did Jeanine seem to be a long shot to win this competition, she seemed unlikely to make the final four just two weeks ago. She has peaked at exactly the right time, delivering a pirouette-filled solo (in which she "tangoed" with herself) which had the judges and the audience on their feet. Solos always seemed to be her weakness but she really delivered this week. She held her own in the contemporary routine with Kayla, and continued to get high praise after dancing with Evan and Brandon. Of all of the dancers, she seems to "want it" the most this week. Odds of winning: 3-to-1

Evan Kasprzak: Well, this is the search for "America's Favorite Dancer," is it not? The judges acknowledged time and time again how popular and gosh-darn-likable the show's first Broadway dancer has been in his time on the show. But they made it very clear that he was far from their favorite to win. They were pretty harsh with Evan, and even his solo, which always wows them, was met with respectable comments at best. At one point, the thousands in the theater almost turned on the judges, chanting "Evan! Evan!" This certainly wasn't Evan's best night by any means, but don't count him out. Odds of winning: 2-to-1

Kayla Radomski: She finally came out of her shell tonight and gave us some personality, said executive producer Nigel Lythgoe. Of course, the dancers with a personality deficit have a history of coming in second, or worse, on this show ("Twitch" notwithstanding). There's no doubt that she gave it her all dancing to "Bye Bye Love" with Brandon, and just plain out-dancing Evan in the jive. But her solo didn't show off who she really is, according to Shankman, and that may have sealed "White Lightning's" fate. Odds of winning: 4-to-1

A few more observations:

– Kudos to Lythgoe for actually naming names when asked by host Cat Deeley who might win (Jeanine or Brandon), as opposed to his fellow judges.

– I'm not exactly sure what Wade Robson, creator of some of the most ingenious, yet twisted dances in the show's history, was thinking with that group routine, sorry. Are we sure that was actually a Robson routine? Just checking.

– Someone decided to overuse the spotlight in the Kodak Theatre and it was distracting. A little less of that during the live finale, okay?

– Does this mean we'll never get to see Mia Michaels choreographing Brandon (the group routine doesn't really count)? What a bummer.

Who are you pulling for in the finale?

soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. Abril

    shes truly talented, amazing and beautiful!!
    she has my vote 🙂

    August 6, 2009 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mark

    We have had to stop watching due to the loud mouth Mary. We just can't take her mouth. She strips away all professionalism from this program.

    August 6, 2009 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  3. anthony

    if anyone has a little bit of dance would be apparent that brandon is the far superior dancer....america get it right !!

    August 6, 2009 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mzst8ks

    Evan is my favorite. He may not be the best, but I do believe he does more to promote dance than the others. Kayla second. There is something so heartwarming about the support she receives from her grandparents. Jeanine third. There is something unsettling to me about Brandon . I know he is talented but of the whole top 20, I liked him the least.

    August 6, 2009 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Bigo

    I'm still hoping Janette will pull it off... Maybe when she dances again tonight in the finale, they will change their minds, bring her back, and give her the title she rightfully deserves.

    I think Brandon will take it. He is well deserving. I won't be mad if Jeanine wins either. She's awesome.

    August 6, 2009 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  6. cmoney

    Well my $.02 are as follows:
    – Kayla – ABSOLUTELY a beautiful dancer but doesn't have much personality to connect to in her dancing
    – Evan – Love his animation when he dances but he is limited in the different genres, very likeable though
    – Brandon – Amazing dancer, lacks confidence or is it a reverse psych type of thing? But Brilliant dancer!!!
    – Janeane – Just jumped on the radar for me recently but love her!!!

    I think the bottom two will be between Brandon and Janeane (If Janette were still here it would be Brandon and Janette)

    But who knows what will happen, it is based on who the majority likes not based on talent so much at this point. So we'll see...

    August 6, 2009 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  7. sally

    Jeanine or Brandon..either would be fine.

    Mary Murphy is disgusting...I have a hard time watching the show
    because of her stupidity and screeching...UGH.

    August 6, 2009 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Connie

    We are supposed to be looking at their whole "So You Think You Can Dance" history. NOT just last nights performances. Brandon and Kayla are by far the best two dancers on the show, since Jeanette got booted. So what if Janene did her best last night. I am sorry but once is just not good enough to be voted America's favorite dancer...

    August 6, 2009 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. cindy

    Evan, I hated the way the judges were picking on him last night, he is a wonderful dancer and is my favorite

    August 6, 2009 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Michelle


    August 6, 2009 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Matt

    Brandon is by far the most athletic, Kayla looks the most trained, Jeanine is the Hottest.. Evan is terrible and is annoying.

    If Evan wins, they lose educated viewers

    August 6, 2009 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Lynn

    Resp to Tab " I think they missed it when they said Kayla and Jeanine were matched in their dance. Kayla always out-dances Jeanine and last night was no exception. "

    I greatly disagree with your analysis. Jeanine is a better dancer than Kayla. Technical prowess is not a hallmark of a great dancer. You have deliver on many levels. Last night, Jeanine showed why she is in the final four and why she deserves to win. I actually feel that Jeanine out danced Kayla last night. As usual, Kayla's dancing lacks personality. Her solo was stale and looked the same. She isn't comfortable taking risks or stepping out of her comfort zone. Jeanine's strength and control in her dance with Kayla was overpowering. It was great to watch them side by side because to me it revealed Jeanine's power and control which dominated the "perceived" cleaner lines of Kayla."

    To respond to the columnist – Jeanine's solo's except for 1 or 2 have been excellent.

    I can say that none of the dancer's solos pushed the envelope were Brandon's and Ade's. That's why I have a big issue with Evan being where he is. He's not good enough to be there and he even knows it. It's on his face. The hunger to win isn't there. Out of the four the two that deserve most to win are Brandon and Jeanine. Why?
    – Power, Control , Versatility, Personality, Style, Daring, Hunger, Passion

    Had Janette been in the finale 4 with Jeanine? I would have picked Janette.

    August 6, 2009 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
  13. workingmom

    Asking the judges who they think will win? That had to be the most unprofessional thing I have ever seen on TV. Who's brilliant idea was that? Outrageous. Loved this whole season, many extraordinarily talented dancers. The one thing I will miss the least is listening to Cat Deeley speak. I have to hold the remote and hit the mute button every time she opens her mouth. Like nails on a chalkboard. And if the voters actually think they make a difference, think again. The outcomes are all predetermined on these shows, wake up people.

    August 6, 2009 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  14. mm

    Great job Jeanine. I think you had the best attitude throughout the whole show. Evan, why are you stuck in the 30s? Brandon, now maybe you don't have to work so hard to prove to yourself that you are a good dancer. Kaylie, what are you hiding?

    August 6, 2009 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Bernadette Wheeler

    She was smokin hot and has been my favorite. I can't verbalize why but Brandon just bugs me even though I recognize he is a strong and terrific dancer. I enjoyed his solo from last week way more than this week's. It was controlled and strong.

    August 6, 2009 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Pat

    My vote " dancing Brandon".

    August 6, 2009 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  17. kmom

    Kayla has my vote. She has had my vote since the beginning. It doesn't matter who she is dancing with, my eyes always gravitate to her because she has such a quality about her that you just know that it is art in the making.

    August 6, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Fanny

    Well, cannot vote since i don't live in the US, but ir really want Brandon to win. But then again, if we look at previous seasons, it's never been the best dancer who won, always has been the most liked dancer (ie Benji and Travis). I guess we'll find out soon enough and it's not like the "losers" won't get to have an amazing carrer anyway. Again, look at Travis, back on the show and doing amazing as a choreographer.

    August 6, 2009 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  19. ml

    I would love to see Jeanine or Brandon win as both are wonderful talents with personality busting out of them. Evan is a wonderful talent with personality to spare but, as many have said, he is just not quite as versatile. On to Kayla, her solo last night was so sub par it was a joke. Other times she is just too frantic. She just gets her leg up in the air (I am not knocking that because her control is great) and then is just frantic again. To me it is not enjoyable to watch while her personality is a big fat zero. She just always seems to be looking down her nose at the other dancers because she has it in her mind she is so far above anyone else. The judges have pretty much told America each week that she should be the winner no matter what. It also seemed like the choreographers were told to feature Kayla in every routine over any partner or partners she was paired with. The show is not a showcase for one dancer and what ever crumbs are left over for the others trying so hard every week to overcome the supporting roll to Queen Kayla they have been given. I feel bad that I feel this way but ever since I first saw Kayla she has come off to me as thinking she is so much better than anyone else and stay out of my spotlight. There could be nothing further from the truth.

    August 6, 2009 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Lachelle

    Come on, Alexa... "If Jeanine wins it’s for her looks, not her dancing."

    This isn't a competition based on looks. If it was, then Jason would have been in the finale. Anyway, I'm pulling for Jeanine!! If not her, then hopefully Brandon.

    August 6, 2009 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Bill - Los Angeles CA

    Kayla is the best dancer on the show and has been my favorite dancer all season! She rocks every routine! I have to say, though, Jeanine was really amazing last night!! I would be happy with either one winning. Has anyone else noticed that all the guys solos this season have felt 'frantic'?? There is too much going on... like they are trying to put every trick they have into that little amount of time. It doesn't make them better; it just makes them sloppy. Anybody else hate it when they 'pulse' their bodies at the end of their solo to the words "dance, dance, dance..." THAT DRIVES ME NUTS! It worked for Twitch, but noone else should be doing that...

    August 6, 2009 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Jen - Knoxville, TN

    I think it is a shame that they don't have us pick the best girl and best guy. Men and women move totally different in dance and I feel that we should get to pick one of each. Since we can only pick one, I chose Jeanine. Girl you rock!!

    August 6, 2009 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Judy

    I was discusted with the judges last night. So much that I'm not sure I want to watch anymore. They picked apart Evan. I am going to tell you that he makes me happy watching him dance – it reminds me of watching all those old movies. Dancing now is so powerhouse – skill – but no heart – he connects with me. I have never seen the judges pick apart someone so much – especially that made it to the top 4. I hate when someone tells me who to like or tries to influence my decision. Like Simon did with David Archleta and Adam Lambert. How did that work out. This show is to find America's favorite dancer...Evan is my pick. If he doesn't win then I will hope for Jeanine as I'm so over Mary telling us Brandon is the best and crying – sure he is great – but she turned me off to him. Sorry. If they want to pick they should change the show concept.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Chris

    1. Kayla 2. Jeanine 3. Brandon 4. Evan

    August 6, 2009 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  25. anita

    Regardless of who wins, did anyone take note of how awesome ALL the dancers were last many routines, so many different partners and they handled it like the professionals they are, Thank you for such a perfect night of pure entertainment.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Alexa

    If Jeanine wins it's for her looks, not her dancing.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:31 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Robert - Hollywood CA

    Technique wise Brandon, Janine or Kayla are superior. But this show is for America's favorite dancer. Most people can't help but like Evan. He may pull off an upset because he IS the favorite.

    Brandon would be my choice but Evan may suprise everyone. Jenine and Kayla are all superb, so no matter who wins congrats to all top 4 and a great season ...

    August 6, 2009 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  28. DIANE

    I, personally, would like to see Evan win. Granted he wasn't the most powerful dancer, but he brings me back to people like Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly and Donald O'Connor when dancing was more than gymnastics to music. Don't get me wrong, I thought Brandon, Janine and Kayla were wonderful, but they mostly dance through acrobatic movement. I'm old school – give me grace and fluid movement over gymnastics anyday. If Evan is not the winner, then I would like to see Brandon take the title. I'm not to stubborn to say that Brandon was the best dancer on the show and he should win if that was the title, but it is America's Favorite Dancer and that for me is Evan.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Leslie

    I am pulling for Janine. Although I think Brandon is a better dancer. They aren't looking for the "Best" dancer, they are looking for America's "Favorite" dancer. I think Janine has a good chance of winning tonight.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  30. TIm

    More than likely Jeanine will win, even though she isn't in the same league with Kayla and Brandon. This show has a tendency to not vote the best dancers as the winners. For example, and the most prevalent one in my mind, was Benji over Travis. However, I think that Brandon and Kayla have the brightest future while Evan will most likely have a great career in Broadway.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Carol W.

    I think that Brandon has been the most consistent of the 4 finalists, and he is technically the best of them. He has had the most memorable dances of the season for me. I thought his compliment to Janette was really classy as she did make him better in their dances together. I have preferred Jeanine’s solos over Kayla’s. Some of Kayla’s movements have been too jerky for my taste. Kayla may be a little more polished than Jeanine, but she has not had as much of a connection with the audience. Evan did not have his best night last night, and he does not have the versatility of the other dancers. I do think that he is extremely talented and has added a lot to the competion.

    August 6, 2009 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Cathy

    I tend to agree with this article. I really wanted little Janette from Miami to win. She was amazing but so are the remaining 4. I really feel if the public is honestly voting for the best of the best, it will be between Brandon and Jeanine. They truly deserve it based on performance, growth and personality.

    Whatever the outcome it should be a good show. I have my seat booked on the couch already!

    August 6, 2009 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Noreli

    If this is a dance competition then Kayla should indeed win!

    August 6, 2009 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  34. cindy


    August 6, 2009 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Lauren

    Based on the season's performances, I say Brandon all the way. However, I'm worried that people were not voting. I voted about 20 times and each time the line was free.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  36. MommaM

    My vote would be for Kayla – she has danced beautifully this whole season – they are all very talented but she has impress me the most.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  37. MamaG

    Brandon is the most amazing dancer, he has moves that have never been seen on the show before.... My vote goes to him.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Patty

    If they chose to, they can all have a career in dancing, whatever genre they embrace! For me, I like Evan.....always seem to pull for the underdog and I would love to see him win. I would buy a ticket to a Broadway Show any day of the week to see him perform, and can't really say that I am emotionally attached enough to any of the other three enough to spend $$ to watch them. Kayla may be technically great, but she is not someone I could warm up to while she danced. Brandon and Janine are both talented and fun to watch. Whoever wins the show, the American public has won and been well served with weeks of wonderful entertainment.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Stuart

    I still like Randi!!! But I think it's between Brandon and Janine. I want Janine out of the 2, but I think Brandon will win it.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Shell

    I love Brandon & Kayla but my favorite dancer is Janine!!!! She rocks! She has the total package 🙂 I would love to see her win but you never know how America will vote. All in all it has been a great season with many awesome dancers.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Teresa

    Wish I could have voted, but I kept getting a busy signal & "phone company problem" message on my phone. Would love to see Jeanine win. In a competition, people should bust their tushes to get better and I have seen more growth in her than anyone else. Evan is sweet and as mentioned by Nigel has an incredible work ethic. Brandon & Kayla are the "beautiful people" and undoubtibly gifted dancers, but my untallied vote is for Jeanine. She's lovely and has a lot more to give. Best of luck to all. I could only dream of dancing that well.

    August 6, 2009 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Andrea

    Brandon has been my favorite since the auditions and I would love to see him win (I can't vote since I don't live in the US) but I think Evan will pull off the upset. He's never been in the bottom two-three and he had the crowd cheering for him last night...I'd say he's pretty much a lock, unfortunately.

    Of course, this is the search for America's favorite dancer and not the best, so maybe Evan deserves it. All I know is that Brandon is the only dancer from this season who I would pay money to see dance live. Go Brandon!

    August 6, 2009 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  43. Tina

    This is really a tough one to call. Kayla was my favorite throughout the competition. Then I watch Brandon and WOW. He is amazing and of course Jeanine – another WOW. Last evening Jeanine was on the top of her game big time. Brandon as well. Kayla – always incredible played it a little safe I thought. I would be really happy with any of these 3. Now on to Evan....he is of course talented to the max BUT he is not a versatile as the other 3. I felt Nigel could have said less about Evan's facial features and focused more on Evan's dancing. And, the mentioning of the lights at the Kodak – I do agree and hope tonight there is a little less of the strobes and therefore the dancers are better seen. All just my opinions.

    August 6, 2009 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
  44. Walt B/Newburyport/Mass

    I feel Nigel deserves a Kennedy Center Award for doing so much to bring Dance not just to television but back to the American Scene.eel
    i DO , however, feel the judges in the Finale ruined Evans chances of winning by vicious remarks on his cute face or being too sweet.
    Nobody believed he would be final four, but the man has more drive and personality than any of the judges. He gave us week after week efforts like no other competitor.
    Having said that Janine came so far yet I still feel Kayla has more ability and lights up a stage with remarkable talent.
    Janine or Kayla should be the winner but all should be honored to have made the Final Four on SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE.
    The judges were to harsh too late against Evan.

    August 6, 2009 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  45. PattiM

    As like able as Evan may be he was so out of his league last night. So much so, that I was embarrassed for him.

    Kayla is technically a tour de force...however, I had difficulty feeling any kind of emotional connection to her when she danced.

    Jeanine has peaked and I love her personality. However, I found her mistakes last night distracting. For example she kept forgetting to point her toes during the Mia Michaels dance with Kayla.

    Brandon gets my vote as the winner. Love, love, love watching him dance!!!!

    August 6, 2009 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  46. Mike Burns

    I honestly don't know who will win. All of the badmouthing from the judges aimed at Evan week after week that completely ignores his very real growth as a dancer may backfire and get him a strong sympathy vote. Mary's been pulling for Brandon since the auditions and that may sour people towards him, but never underestimate the appeal of a good-looking guy in tiny shorts. Jeanine had that totally awesome paso doble topping off a great surge, and Kayla's been great all season but American voters are a strange group of people.

    August 6, 2009 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |

    Jeanine's solos have been weak? Have you tried watching them with your eyes open? Evan is similar to previous winne Benji but he lacks the overall versatility. However, the judges piled so high on him all season long, he's going to get a lot of sympathy votes. i had little sympathy last night so I voted for Jeanine.

    August 6, 2009 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
  48. Tab

    I think they missed it when they said Kayla and Jeanine were matched in their dance. Kayla always out-dances Jeanine and last night was no exception. The Quality of Kayla's dance and movement (and Brandon's too) is far and away better than that of Evan and Jeanine. I believe they knew who they wanted to win and their comments were in line with that. Jeanine's dance has improved, but Kayla's only downfall is always being too good. You can't move up when you are already great.

    August 6, 2009 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  49. TheFan

    Jeanine! She really stepped it up last night and she has great personality. Brandon is a great dancer, no doubt about it, but i won't pick up the phone for him, I think there's false modesty there. Same goes for Kayla – brilliant dancer, but a little too low key in this competition. Evan is a a great guy, but as a dancer he is a step behind the other three.

    My vote goes to Jeanine!

    August 6, 2009 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  50. PHinGA

    I hope Nigel's prediction didn't influence voting, but it probably did.

    Jeanine had her best night last night; Brandon also shined in all of his routines. Evan really was not very good last night. He is really sweet but I'm not sure he's good enough to actually have a career in dance.

    August 6, 2009 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  51. BD

    i'm still rooting for kayla as i think she's an absolutely beautiful dancer and her technique is near flawless, but jeanine continues to impress me and it would be a great moment to see her win, as well. best of luck to the both of them!

    August 6, 2009 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  52. gloria

    I don't know who will prevail to win it all probably Jeanine but I certainly hope that Mary's screams turn down a couple of notches. I mean of course upon witnessing great performances everyone must want to scream to a degree but we certainly don't want to be in pain – if Mary is so pleased with a performance she could certainly find some kind of praise to heap upon the performers instead of such wanton screeching.

    August 6, 2009 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |

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