June 11th, 2010
08:58 AM ET

'SYTYCD' top 11 showcase their skills

It's good to see that the pre-competition episode of "So You Think You Can Dance," where we get to see the dancers perform in their own styles, is becoming an annual tradition. (Well, not exactly their own styles... Alexie and Melinda aren't really Broadway dancers per se, but close enough.)

With Thursday night's early look at how this season's contenders measure up - not just against each other but against the "all-stars" - we can start to see who really stands out. For example, I loved Jason Gilkeson's smoking ballroom routine, but not for Cristina's performance. Anya and Pasha have such star quality that she just didn't measure up. A lot will depend on how she performs in the other styles.

Speaking of star quality, Jose certainly has it. Tabitha and Napoleon's quite literal take on the B-boy having to prove himself versus Twitch, Comfort and Dominic really gave him a chance to shine, and he took full advantage of it. Like other untrained dancers before him, he shouldn't be underestimated.

He may not know it, but Kent is the one to beat. He proved that in Travis Wall's gothic routine, holding his own against Kathryn, Mark (who would win the prize for "most-in-his-element" if there were such a thing), and the best girl so far, Lauren. It didn't hurt that he bantered so well with Cat Deeley, and the judges' praise for him picked up right where they left off in Las Vegas.

Alexie and Melinda's Broadway routine with all-stars Allison and Lauren was mostly forgettable, but there's no doubt that Melinda is more than just a tapper. Alexie has a great personality but I can't say that she stood out from the others.

We also got to see Mia Michaels' comeback routine, and it was... not that interesting actually. I liked the concept of Billy, Alex and all-star Ade portraying three ages of man, but it all added up to not a whole lot, as beautifully danced as it was by the trio.

Finally, Sonya Tayeh delivered a routine that was classic Sonya all around. Adechike, the virtually unknown Ashley and Robert, and all-stars Courtney and Neil had great chemistry and danced as if they had been part of the same troupe for years. If anyone stood out it was Adechike, especially towards the end. I think the voters will agree with Sonya that he is anything but an underdog. Meanwhile, Robert is far too chatty this early in the season, and Ashley needs to deliver a dynamite performance next week to stick around.

I'm certainly looking forward to the "real show" finally starting next week, and just as a side note, I have to say that it was beyond wonderful to see the all-stars back on the "SYTYCD" stage.

Do you like how the season is shaping up so far? Do you agree that it's Kent's to lose? Share your opinion on video, or in the comments below.

soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. praca

    ou did a a-ok chore creating a libretto also in behalf of photographers like me with no participation with stock. You explained so much that I needed to know. I read it with consuming interest. You are a singular writer. I’m tickled pink to have met you and honour that you are as plenteous and clubby as your creation indicates. Your service is appreciated.

    April 13, 2011 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  2. speak2angels

    I absolutely loved this episode. The talent and routines were insanely good from the start til the end.

    June 11, 2010 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Aerin

    I think Kent will surprise us all. That kid is good. He might be from a small town... He might not have the resume some of the other contestants have, and he may seem goofy, but he has some serious talent. As they say "You've ain't seen nothing yet!"

    June 11, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  4. MM

    I think it will be hard to not watch the all-stars this season and overlook the contenders. My eyes are instantly drawn to the people I know. It will definitely be harder for the contenders to make a name for themselves this season.

    June 11, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |

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