So You Think You Can Dance 2008

And so another season is in the books.  Sadly, I didn’t get to watch much of the last three weeks while I was busy setting up the new house, but something struck me:

Reality shows have a general arc they follow. In the first season, everything is ne and exciting.  Over the next couple of years, the format shifts subtly and everything gets ramped up a notch.  Everything becomes bigger and bolder and, theoretically, better.  Pretty soon, people catch on to the tricks.  The show moves so far away from its original mission statement that it’s practically a new show that merely catches shadows of the original. And the downhill slide begins.

“So You Think You Can Dance,” on the other hand, is maintaining an upward trajectory. The show hasn’t had a misstep yet.  There’s been no major shift in the formula.  Sure, they may shift partners earlier or add new dance styles or give the votes to the viewers sooner, but it’s basically the same show.  Same set.  Same judges.

And it works.  Every season has gotten better and better.  And this season was so packed full of talented dancers that when the best dancer in the series’ history got voted out by America a couple of weeks ago, it wasn’t that big a blow to the show.  There were still plenty of capable dancers left.  There were no slackers in there.

That said, the show may have to pull back a little next season.  They’re overworking the contestants. Two went to the hospital over the weekend.  There’s just too much stuff happening.  Perhaps they should back off the two hour episodes with two routines each week.  Let the show shrink to an hour and a half or even an hour.  Give the contestants’ bodies a chance to cope.

Still, it’s a great show.  I thought the second place finisher would be the big winner this season, but I was wrong.  Oh, well.

Mary Murphy couldn’t keep up at top speed with the dancers on the show, but Nigel was very cute with the kids from the Debbie Allen Dance Academy.  And the pop-and-lock competition was really cool, though my wife found it boring. Can’t wait for next season. . .

One thought on “So You Think You Can Dance 2008

  1. While I agree that they need to pull back a little next season, I doubt they will because the two hour episodes probably bring in too much advertising money for this part of the TV season. What they could do is tailor the final week(s) towards the dancer’s background. Having the jive and that Russian dance had to have been brutal for Joshua, not to mention Mia Micheal’s strenuous contemporary number. Imagine if Joshua and Twitch could have done a hip-hop routine together instead. It probably would have been one of the best of the season.

    Next season’s talent level is going to have to be amazingly high to avoid a bit of a letdown though. If I recall correctly, the season of AI after the Three Divas was good but couldn’t quite match the week-to-week pleasure of watching those three ladies sing. As a result, I eventually stopped watching the show (not that the rest of the country has, so it’s probably just me).

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