Emmys 2012

Erica: Check this out! It’s an Erica/Kate conversation about Emmys fashions! And yes, btw, I’m going with Emmys and not Emmies. I don’t know. The latter looks wrong to me.

Kate: Emmys is correct; even iPhone autocorrect recognizes it. Same with Tonys. (Right?)

Erica: Right. Except iPhone autocorrect didn’t recognize “kale” and thought I wanted some “black male panzanella.” So I don’t always trust iPhone autocorrect. Anyway, let’s go!

Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Erica: I think she looks great!

Kate: I LOVE! Such a great color and I’m so pleased she won for Veep for two reasons: 1) It’s a grown-up comedy about politics that I actually know and like and understand, and 2) HBO never wins for comedies. But when they zoomed in on her during the acceptance speech I noted that her earrings didn’t match and her makeup looked not quite finished.

Erica: Her hair and make up could be a little more oomphy. But she looks fantastic! I’m so proud of her!

Connie Britton

Erica: On the other hand . . .

Kate: I know, this really upset me, but it’s no SO bad from the waist down.

Erica: I mean, let’s discuss. Connie Britton has the greatest head of hair in recorded history. I checked. So why is it up?

Kate: I really am not sure.

Erica: And the shape is so blah! Connie Britton, you are a hottie! Dress like it!

Kate: But the color actually works because of her hair color, no?

Erica: I guess.

Kate: PS So excited for her new show Nashville October 10!!!!

Erica: Yeah, me too. On to the women of “Mad Men”! Starting with, naturally . . .

Christina Hendricks

Erica: Hair? Perfect. Make-up? Great. Dress?

Kate: PERFECT MINUS THE BELT! What is with everyone and belts on the red carpet?

Erica: Yeah, that’s my problem. I mean, my real problem is that it looks like an actual belt. I hate that on a formal gown.

Kate: And I love her hair all grown out like that, and the earrings, and that facial expression. She knew she won this one.

Erica: She wins at life, man.

Elizabeth Moss

Kate: Gah!

Erica: Why is she blonde?

Kate: Gaaaaaaaahhh!!!

Erica: No, I mean, why is she blonde?

Kate: Why did the seamstress not finish the bottom half of this dress?

Erica: Yeah, but why is she blonde?

January Jones

Erica: First, I love whatever this gesture is. This is a caption-worthy photo right here.

Kate: Do I even need to say anything here?

Erica: Here’s the thing about January Jones. She seems to always dress like she’s trying to convince everyone that she is NOT Betty Draper and a lot of the time she looks ridiculous. And miserable. But here, I don’t know, maybe it’s the smile, but I think I really love this dress.

Kate: Here’s the thing about January Jones, she looks terrible here and should try dress shapes other than tight as hell on top and stupidly poofy on the bottom.

Erica: I don’t know; she’s very experimental and I sort of like this one.

Kate: If experimental means continuously wearing the same stupid thing.

Kiernan Shipka

Erica: OMG she looks adorable.

Kate: Yes, perfect!!

Erica: Now what about the girls of “Girls”? Jemima Kirke (the wacky Jenna) was mysteriously absent (or mysteriously if you haven’t, you know, Googled her or anything) but how did the rest of them do?

Lena Dunham

Erica: You know what? I’m grading her on a curve. A curve made up of all of her other fashion choices ever, including what she dresses her character in for “Girls”. And on that curve? Solid B+.

Kate: I was actually expecting a lot more from Lena because she uglies herself up so much for the show and she is actually a good-looking human being, but I think she truly just doesn’t give a hoot.

Erica: See, the thing is, she’s a perfectly fine-looking person . . . for a person. Not so much for a Hollywood actress. And she appears determined at all times to demonstrate that she’s not even TRYING to be pretty like everyone else. She’s doing like, the opposite of what January Jones does.

Kate: Ergo, I adore her.

Zosia Mamet

Erica: I mean, I love her. She’s adorable on the show and I really want to see more from her character and more from her as an actress. She’s a person who, if I know she’s in a movie, I’ll see it, just for her.

Kate: I can’t decide who’s funnier, her or Marni, but this was a total fail for her red carpet debut. And she has the wrong shape/size head/ears for her hair so severely slicked back like that, as do most people.

Erica: Seriously, ladies of the entertainment industry. Hair is pretty. Especially your hair. Show it off.

Allison Williams

Erica: She is way skinnier than I thought she was. Or she lost weight. She should not do that.

Kate: She does look like she lost weight, but I absolutely love this dress, except for that stupid peplum thing that is literally haunting me everywhere I go.

Erica: Literally? Really?

Kate: They are everywhere!!!

Erica: The thing about the peplum is that it’s supposed to create hips on bodies that don’t have them. And some bodies really don’t. But some bodies have just dieted theirs into oblivion. Allison.

Kate: They are an eye sore.

Erica: So who else do we want to talk about?

Kate: How about . . .

Kerry Washington

Erica: Really? I feel like this is not very exciting from her.

Kate: No but I like it/would wear it, but I do agree with what my fashion-conscious boyfriend said during a football game commercial when I was permitted to see all the dresses: She’s too skinny.

Erica: Yeah, she’s lost a little weight, too, and not in a good way. But honestly, she’s hardly the worst offender there. Allison. Also, Kate, I don’t like that dress for you.

Kate: Fine, I’ll text her back and tell her to cancel sending it to me.

Kaley Cuoco

Erica: So I feel like I frequently enjoy her outfits at awards shows, and this is no exception. But what is up with her face? It’s not like I normally know what she looks like, because I don’t watch the show she’s on (or, actually, know what it is), but I feel like that’s not normally what her face looks like.

Kate: This is one of the three very blonde ladies who woe bright-ass yellow, and this is the worst one. I mean, ew!

Erica: Really? I like it. And I think Julianne Moore’s is the worst one. (I know she’s not blonde but she also chose bright yellow.) Why does such a beautiful woman dress like that?

Kate: Yes, Julianne Moore looked terrible as well. That was way too much for the Emmys.

Erica: Hey, what about the lovely ladies of “Modern Family”?

Sophia Vergara

Kate: She is a mermaid, and not in a good way.

Erica: She’s wearing a cool color this time instead of a warm one. That’s change, right?

Kate: Why doesn’t she try wearing her hair up for once?

Erica: Geez, we are difficult to please.

Kate: Well this is exactly why they attend these things!

Julie Bowen

Erica: I really like Julie Bowen. I think she’s one of the prettiest people, in a very quiet way, like you could almost mistake her for a regular person until you look at her again, but I am frequently critical of her fashion choices. I take it all back. This is by far the worst thing she’s ever worn.

Kate: Second blondie wearing yellow (or is this neon green?), and I hate this one as well.

Erica: No, wait, I’m sorry, it’s not the dress. It’s the hair. What’s up with your hair, Julie Bowen?

Kate: It looks 10 times worse than mine when I don’t do it/put anything into it, and that’s pretty bad.

Kate: Okay, who else?

Mindy Kaling

Erica: I’m sure there’s a dress that could be slightly more flattering on her and I wish she’d ease up on make-up just a touch – like, back when Jane was a) in existence, and b) good, they used to do a monthly Make-under, and I’d kind of like to see that done to Mindy here, but, you know, I think she’s just terrific and overall she looks lovely.

Kate: I LOOOOVEEE! The goddessy shape is my favorite and the color is super swell, I just could do without the gold belt and that gothic lipstick color. Jeez Mindy. (Er you need to give me her book still!)

Erica: Kate, I took it out of the library, so I don’t know what to tell you.

Kate: Ugh, damn the man.

Ginnifer Goodwin

Erica: I really love her. I don’t know why she’s making that face. But I love her. And I sort of love this dress. It’s not that it looks amazing on her, and I’m always hesitant about belted things, and in this case, the color on the belt is a mismatch, but the dress is really interesting and unusual and the color is great and I think I like it.

Kate: Yes that is quite a face, and I sort of love it too, which is surprising to me.

Erica: Those shoes, though. Those shoes freak me out.

Kate: See, I like the shoes and how they peak out from the dress but still sort of blend into it. (What is wrong with me?)

Erica: No, look closer! They are the orange version of the ones Rihanna wore that don’t actually cover the toes!

Kate: I know, I still like it, so I will check myself into a mental institution shortly after this post.

Melissa McCarthy

Erica: She looks pretty good.

Kate: I don’t love the hair but it is a nice change from the same 3 dresses she wore all spring award show season.

Erica: I kind of hate that her purse and ring clash, and there are a whole lot of textures going on in the dress, but the shape is good and I’d say it’s a win for her.

Kate: Oh I didn’t even notice, but her ring matches her nails no?

Erica: Yeah. I like the ring. Just not with the purse.

Kate: And I’M tough to please?
Hayden Panettiere
Photo Gallery: Emmys 2012: Red Carpet Hits and Misses
Kate: I actually sort of love this dress, it’s very different, but I hate that she keeps doing that horrible thing with her hair. Down and mussy would have been perfect-o.

Erica: I absolutely adore this dress, and agree with you about the hair. She’s another one with simply fabulous locks that should always be visible. Although in this dress you could also do some pretty braids and twists and things.

Kate: No, braids are bad.

Claire Danes
Photo Gallery: Emmys 2012: Red Carpet Hits and Misses

Kate: Third blondie wearing yellow and this is my favorite one, although it looked much better live during the show than it does in this photo. You’re going to say you don’t like the bagginess of it, aren’t you?

Erica: Yeah, I am. Although to be fair, I didn’t watch the telecast, so maybe you’re right. Also her make-up is washing her out.

Kate: No then it’s definitely the photo because she looked great during the show.

Tina Fey

Photo Gallery: Emmys 2012: Red Carpet Hits and Misses

Kate: Um excuse me I love this!!<

Erica: This is sexy! I like that Tina Fey is finally embracing that she’s a good-looking person.

Kate: Totes!

Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi

Erica: Ellen looks . . . I mean, I don’t like her hair like that but otherwise she looks fine. She likes to do the suity thing and it’s fine.

Kate: Yea, you can’t say anything bad about Ellen.

Erica: But Portia appears to be wearing a beige macrame jumpsuit. I just do not know what the hell anymore because seriously.

Kate: Blends in with her skintone and hair, which you know I love (no). Also, those are pants? . . .

Erica: Yes! It’s just . . . Quick, let’s look at something else.

Zooey Deschanel

Erica: Ah, that’s better. Like a lovely sorbet for the eyes.

Kate: Her face and hair are adorable as usual but the top of that dress does very strange things to her chest.

Erica: Yeah . . . but it’s so dreamy! It’s not her usual style. It’s not obviously retro or quirky or costume-y. But it still suits her.

Kate: And I actually like the lack of jewelry with hair up and a strapless dress, very natural.

Erica: Jewelry would make that dress look weirdly trashy, I think. Ethereal air sprites don’t wear jewelry.

Kate: And on that note, we bid you adieu.

SYTYCD – The Finale!

Erica: Here’s what’s going on – for some reason Fox was not broadcasting to NYC Tuesday night. Or possibly just to Kate’s apartment.

Kate: Definitely just my apartment, literally the only channel. HD and regular.

Erica: So I’m going to do a little bit of recapping for her, and also, since they’re mostly just repeating dances they did before, we’ll be able to comment on their choices.

Kate:I already know which ones they’re picking.

Erica: BUT the other thing is I’m having a kind of crazy week so that’s why this is so late. And my recaps might be filled with, “And then I fast-forwarded.” Fun, yes?

Kate: Well, we’ve all already seen these dances and all we care about is the last 5 minutes so we can find out if you are remaining in this country.

Erica: Okay, great! So Cat’s in a little silver glittery cocktail dress. Not interesting or unusual in any way, but God knows, “interesting” and “unusual” have NOT been working for her this season. So this dress looks great and her shoes are appropriately stilt-like and her hair is pin-straight and lovely.

Kate: I love her hair pin-straight. Mine, not so much.

Erica: Nigel and Mary are joined at judges table by Tasty Oreo, the lamentably little-seen Debbie Allen, Adam Shankman, and, for reasons not immediately apparent to me, Li’l C.

Kate: OH NO! HE CAME BACK?! I guess Time Warner knows how much I can’t stand him and that’s why Fox was the only channel not working on my stupid @ss TV.

Erica: Fear not, I will not be listening to any of them. Also – the boys’ tuxes look kind of . . . I mean, Nigel’s is all shiny and black-on-black paisley, so that’s weird, and then the other boys, especially Tyce, just look . . . How shall I say this? I think both my prom dates had sharper-looking tuxes. That’s what I’m saying.

Kate: Um.

Erica: Also, Mary has decided to cede the cleavage battle to Debbie Allen. Mary’s covered up to her chin and Debbie is like, whoa, girl. And Mary’s hair is back again. I feel like for seasons and seasons now we’ve only ever seen Mary’s hair down and for two weeks in a row it’s been up. What’s up, Mary? Bad extensions? Feeling insecure about the cut? Go back to being a brunette; it suited you better.

Kate: Um.

Erica: First up we have a group dance to “Torn” by Nathan Lanier, a sort of desperately mournful instrumental choreographed by the combined minds of Sonya Tayeh and Christopher Scott. There is major wind and also I don’t know if something’s up with my TV or what but I guess this is supposed to be very dimly lit? But I kept thinking that throughout the show so maybe it’s my TV? Anyway, wind. Boys in oversized suits with gray tee-shirts and athletic socks like they are coming from a Bar Mitzvah. Girls in very modest royal blue ballgowns, like maybe it was an Orthodox Bar Mitzvah. But the dance is hella cool. (Using “hella,” Kate. Don’t care.) First the boys push and pull the girls through the leaps and then there are some stunningly gorgeous leaps from the guys and cool, like, shapes with the bodies and it’s just all very melodramatic and awesome and windy, except they are still using choreography to cover for Cyrus. And then at the end Cyrus and Chehon stand next to each other in the middle and the rest of the group tosses Eliana and Tiffany to them. Like, pretty far. It’s cool. Everyone’s wildly enthusiastic.

Kate: Cyrus was doing stunningly gorgeous leaps?

Erica: No one is more wildly enthusiastic than Sonya, who is quite pleased with herself.

Kate: Duh. Duh, squared.

Erica: Then we start with favorites. Nigel gets to go first and he chooses Travis Wall’s routine with the chaise longue that was supposed to be based on Titanic and was set to one of my very favorite songs ever, “Unchained Melody” by The Righteous Brothers, danced by Audrey (The Other Contemporary Brunette) and Matthew (Gosling). Solid choice, certainly. Good dance. I had forgotten until I looked for the link that this was in the first episode. Nigel appreciates the use of the chaise as a real part of the dance rather than just a jumping off point. So to speak.

Kate: I wish they’d chosen the Tiffany and Audrey dance from the first first episode instead, that was baller. (But, since Fox wasn’t working, and my DVR only recorded a black screen, I suppose I wouldn’t have seen it anyway.)

Erica: Next up, Li’l C, after much verbose explanation, chooses Witney and Twitch’s “ratchet” hip-hop, choreographed by new-to-the-show (and let’s bring him back, please) Luther Brown, to “My Homies Still” by Li’l Wayne feat. Big Sean. Also a solid choice. Not a solid choice? Keeping Witney in those ridiculous pants.

Kate: Wait. Li’l (shouldn’t the apostrophe be AFTER the second “l”?!) chose ratchet?!  What!

Erica: Here is what’s unfortunate. Jason was watching some of this with me. He did not see anything wrong with the pants.

Kate: Everything is wrong with the pants. Was she as sassy as/more “hood” than last time?

Erica: Here is what’s fortunate. Zoe set up her little chair at the front of the room to practice the moves from the chaise dance. Then while watching this dance, she practiced her hairography.

Kate: I can’t wait to start going to her recitals.

Erica: Debbie, who, you may or may not remember from auditions, was a huge George fan, chooses the Sonya piece featuring Tiffany and George and set to “Turning Page” by Sleeping at Last.

Kate: I didn’t like George and I don’t remember this one?

Erica: I will be honest. I didn’t remember this from its original iteration and I didn’t watch it this time. Sorry.

Kate: So we’re on the same page. (Literally, ha!)

Erica: Then apparently they’re going to be giving us their Top 5 Audition Moments. First up – the big dude who’s the only male member of his family never to have been incarcerated and who wants to have dance after-school programs for inner-city youth. I want to not be manipulated by SYTYCD’s pretentious self-righteousness, but the truth is, this guy seems very sincere in his aims and, despite his size, dances with real grace and joy and talent. So, you know. I’ve got nothing cynical to say here.

Kate: Gotta fill those two hours, eh? Why wasn’t he in the top 20 then?

Erica: Adam chooses Lindsey and Cole’s paso doble by Jason Gilkison, set to “Unstoppable” by ES Posthumus.

Kate: Hate. Paso. Do. Blay.

Erica: I did vaguely remember that this was really good and that Cole gave a very good uber-masculine paso doble performance . . . but I didn’t care enough to watch this time around.

Kate: Because you were frightened he might jump out of the TV screen and kidnap Zoe, and perhaps you too?

Erica: Tyce mentions the fabulous personalities on this season, like Will and Amelia, and then chooses their NappyTabs routine to “Lovecats” by The Cure. Which is . . . fine. I mean, that was a good one. Right?

Kate: Wrong. Cute, not great.

Erica: I didn’t re-watch this one, either. I was going to say it wasn’t my favorite NappyTabs of the season, then I realized I liked NappyTabs a lot better last season. Even though I still made fun of them.

Kate: I ❤ them and their new baby.

Erica: The #4 audition they remind us of was that Dallas mom who performed awesomely and then her little boy came up to give her the ticket and she kind of lost it and then her little two-year-old girl performed for everyone – and also did really well! Only they don’t show the baby performing which was the best part! But anyway that was very sweet and I hope she’s finding work in the dance world right now. The mom, I mean. Or the girl.

Kate: Tat audition made me cry, and I hate them all for not putting her in the top 20 based on that baby alone. She reminded me of Melissa from Jeanine and Ade’s season.

Erica: Mary picks the Holocaust dance – and calls it the Holocaust dance! Which you might remember, it pissed me off that they didn’t when they did it the first time! Only Mary calls it the “Hollycaust” and also gets wrong what the dance was about – she seems to think it was about that moment when the SS bangs on your door and says you’ve got two minutes, pack one suitcase and let’s go. When actually it’s about being a post-Holocaust survivor, putting together the pieces after the tragedy and horror. Because the Mary interpretation would have been way darker and scarier – you’d be watching someone who was on his way to a concentration camp to die, and you’d know that even if the character the dancer was portraying didn’t. You’d be looking at someone who was frightened of what the future might hold, rather than anguished about what the past held to the point where he can’t even see the future. Anyway, I have always loved “Eli, Eli” since my Hebrew School days, and this version by Sophie Milman is lovely, and yeah, even though it’s by Tasty Oreo, I liked it. And I really liked that someone finally acknowledged what it was about.

Kate: . . . Hollycaust?!

Erica: Then, this year, each of the Top 4 gets to pick a song to re-dance. It should be no surprise to anyone that Eliana chooses the Stacey Tookey routine she performed with Alex Wong to “Bang, Bang” by Nancy Sinatra. Which was an awesome routine and my second-favorite of the season.


Erica: After Eliana dances, Nigel talks to her for a few minutes, and tells her that Desmond Richardson wants her for his company. Eliana is for some reason surprised by this. I am not.

Kate: 1) Who? 2) Yay! 3) Wasn’t she already part of another company?

Erica: The third audition they honor were the Ninja twins. Again, I want to be cynical, because these guys were so very “We’re gay and bitchy and multiethnic! Love us!” Except I kind of did. They were pretty funny and not bad dancers. So fine.

Kate: Do not remember.

Erica: Cat chooses the Doriana Sanchez disco (it has eleven lifts!) that Tiffany and Brandon danced to (and did eleven lifts!) to “You Make Me Feel” by Cobra Starship feat. Sabi (Disco Fries Remix) (with the eleven lifts!). Boo, Cat. Just boo.

Kate: Has Cat always gotten a choice?

Erica: Chehon chooses his tango with Anya. It was choreographed by people whose names I didn’t catch the first time around, and danced to “Breathing Below the Surface” by Jesse Cook. I think he’s the only one who found this routine memorable.

Kate: Hah, agreed; this might have been my least favorite from his delicious self.

Erica: Cat does a thing about how could they choose between all the fabulous hip-hop numbers this season for their favorite hip-hop routine? Then they show a video montage of all the hip-hop numbers. Two of which they’ve already done. So I don’t know what the point is here. I did forget that Cat accused Nigel of trying to act street and told him it was like watching your dad at a wedding, which, good one, Cat. Good one. I also enjoyed re-seeing her pretend to do a “ratchet” hip-hop move with Witney and Twitch. But then they announce that instead of picking (another) one of the routines for the (other) hip-hop number (and I was surprised by this reaction in myself, but I would have watched Will and Lauren’s, or Eliana and Cyrus’s, or Cyrus and Twitch’s, or even Tiffany and George’s babysitting number again), they’re going to do a NEW hip-hop number ! With Twitch and Comfort and Cyrus AND choreographer Chris Scott! It’s set to “Holy Ghost” by Messinian (Helicopter Showdown & Sluggo Remix) and it’s pretty cool and very animator-y. They’re all playing poker and then they decide Cyrus was cheating so they go after him but also animate and pull on each other’s suspenders and whatnot. And then he was totally cheating, just so y’all know. Anyway, it was a pretty good routine.

Kate: Well I obviously had to look up this routine and twas quite awesome, I especially like that Crhis Scott joined because I was wondering if this white hip-hop choreographer had any rhythm/swag, and, in fact, he does.

Erica: Tiffany chooses her dance with Ade, by Mandy Moore, to “Power of Love” by Celine Dion. I am once again totally distracted by Ade’s arms.

Kate: ‘Cause I’m your laaaaaaaaaaaaddddddddaaaaaaayyyyyyyy!

Erica: When Tiffany comes up for the judges to praise her, I notice that she appears to have a bruise on her forehead or something. I hope she’s okay.

Kate: Probably from dancing with her hair down.

Erica: The number 2 audition is that dude from Dallas who called himself an “exorcist” and was all, “My style is that I can steal people’s souls,” and I thought, “Oh, for fuck’s sake,” but then he kind of did. And it wasn’t just me, they showed video of basically everyone in the room sobbing when he finished. Anyway. These damn auditioners robbed me of my cynicism this year.

Kate: No, I HATED him. Thought he was a total freak creep and couldn’t believe my eyes and ears when the judges actually LIKED him.

Erica: And then they announce that the final, number 1 audition was the Dragonhouse Crew, who are Cyrus’s buds, and then they show them dance, and the dance features another former auditioner, the dude with, like, the bone disease who sort of introduced “animation” to this show and was awesome so many years ago? Anyway. It was cool. If you like that sort of thing. Jason did. He made me watch twice.

Kate: I didn’t know Cyrus auditioned in a group? Did he dance with them again?

Erica: They didn’t audition together but they came together and they live together in a house with like 23 people and they dance together. And then Nigel seems especially pleased with himself to have these fellows on his stage. His face looks sort of Mr. Burns-esque. Nigel, I’m sorry I’m so mean to you. I can’t help it sometimes. In all seriousness, I love this show and thanks for producing it.

Kate: Creepy old wacko.

Erica: Then Carly Rae Jepsen sings a song that is not “Call Me Maybe.” I would say it’s not nearly as brain-worm-inducing, but Zoe makes us watch twice, and I think four-year-olds are sort of Pop Whisperers. So count on that one climbing the charts, I guess.

Kate: HAH!

Erica: Then they do a video montage of everything that happened this season and they do show a tiny clip of the little girl who “auditioned” after her mommy! Why didn’t they feature her in her mommy’s package?

Kate: She and Zoe should be friends, no?

Erica: Cyrus chooses his Christopher Scott-choreographed dance to “Like a Criminal” by District 78 with Twitch because duh. Good job, guys.

Kate: Still think Twitch is infinitely better in all aspects.

Erica:  So then when we’re back from the break they announce a NappyTabs group routine which for some reason we have to sit through a trailer for even though we’re about to watch the actual dance. But the trailer tells us that it’s this season’s Top Ten with this season’s ten All-Stars and it’s jungle-rific. And then the dance starts and there are rocks and foliage and the kids are all in jungle gear and the song is “Circle of Life” from The Lion King, but of course a District 78 remix. Who are District 78, anyway?

Kate: Also had to look this one up, because it’s NappyTabs, and oh my GOD LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!! So raunchy!!!

Erica: Anyway, it’s a cool routine. Actually? I think it is my favorite NappyTabs of the season. It’s fun and it’s hard and the dancers obviously loved doing it. At one point the girls wave their butts in the audience’s face for, like, 30 whole seconds, and at another point, Marko, I believe, bounces across two other boys’ backs and goes flipping far for, um, a human, and it was great.

Kate: Maybe my favorite NappyTabs routine EVER! HOLY COW!

Erica: So by this point Jason had gone to bed and Zoe was driving me f-ing nuts – it has been a rough day – so I didn’t watch the rest but I know who won because Kate saw tweets from Alex Wong this morning and America, surprisingly enough, chose right and selected Eliana and Chehon! Go you guys! Hooray!

Kate: So you are staying in the country, swell!

Erica: See you next week for Kate’s and my fashion review of the Emmys!

Kate: Crap, that’s this Sunday?

SYTYCD Season 9 – Top 4!

Kate: CORRECTION GUYS — tonight is only PERFORMANCE finale. The real finale, with votes, is next TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 18.


Kate: What. Is. That. Dress.

Erica: Yes.

Kate: GREAT hair and makeup, though. Why can I never get my makeup to look remotely like anything like that?

Erica: I loved the hair. Jason commented that the make-up was too much. Because of course he did.

Kate: Holy sparkle and holy messy side bun Mary Murphy! You know, I really hate messy side buns.

Erica: I was wondering if she was just trying to go back to her ballroom dance days with the side bun. Myself, I like a messy side bun in general but not so much that one.

Eliana & Cyrus: Paso Doble, “The Game Has Changed” by Daft Punk, choreographed by Jason Gilkinson

Kate: I hate this style.

Erica: I do not hate this style but I didn’t love this iteration of it. If she’s the matador and not the cape this time, why is she dressed like that?

Kate: He bored me and looked like he was struggling a lot like it was still practice.

Erica: See, I thought that he didn’t look quite as much like Eliana had to lead him around the stage as he used to and that he’s grown as a dancer. But yeah. He’s not up to her level. No one is. I did love his, as Cat Deeley described, “Blue Steel Face.”

Kate: There you go again Nigel patronizing.

Erica: Seriously. “Aren’t you so incredibly lucky that we took you from your brown-skinned pit of ignorance and hopelessness and raised you to these lofty heights, young man?” Shut it, Nigel. But as for Mary’s critique, I think I am going to start using “skinny dipping with snapping turtles” as my constant metaphor for difficult things.

Tiffany & Season 4’s Will: contemporary, “Time is Now” by Moloko, choreographed by Sonya Tayeh

Erica: I did not recognize him at first, because he had significantly less hair when he was on the show, and I didn’t understand Cat’s announcement before break, but when they came back, I was like, “Oh my God, WILL!” And I may have squealed a little.

Kate: I did not agree with the judges and thought this was a pretty awkward pairing, possibly because I don’t think I’ve ever seen him on this show before, but she was pretty good as usual.

Erica: I thought they were both very good but not really good together. I wish I had seen Will dance with Eliana. Also, Mary? You fake out no one.

Eliana & Chehon: ballet, “The Nutcracker Grand Pas de Duex” by Bruton APM Studios, choreographed by the Russian dude who is possibly called Marat Dokia?

Erica: Sorry. They never gave that choreographer a chyron so I’m only guessing based on Nigel’s slightly over-emphasized pronunciation when he was patting himself on the back for having the dude from the Russian ballet come choreograph on his little show.

Kate: So not only do I finally get these 2 together, I get them in a classical ballet number!? My heart almost stopped.

Erica: I know. So exciting. So beautiful. So ridiculously oh my God. You know? Eliana can do anything. Chehon can do . . . a lot of other things. But Tiffany and Cyrus? They can’t do that.

Kate: How many times and in how many ways can I say that this girl is absolutely perfect. What I loved about season 6 winner Jeanine was her amazing control over her own body and movement, and Eliana has that times 1000000000.

Erica: It’s not just her control; it’s her joy. It’s the way dancing looks natural on her the way walking looks natural on other people. Or, like, slumping on the couch looks natural on other people.

Kate: It did kind of look like Chehon wasn’t doing much, but I understand he probably did. The pas de duex is for the girl anyway.

Erica: And what he did, he did really well. He’s stunning. I’m not as over-the-moon for him as I am for her, because I don’t think he’s as adaptable, and he’s not as natural or joyous or accessible as he is, but he is still a wonderful dancer as long as the style is somewhere within his range. Also he is kinda hot.

Tiffany & Cyrus: “Best Thing I Never Had” by Beyonce, lyrical hip-hop choreographed by Tessandra Chavez

Kate: Well I love lyrical hip-hop. This had some really cool lifts and tosses, but I suppose it’s easy to toss her around, and I think they have good chemistry.

Erica: I do not love lyrical hip-hop. And I thought they looked excessively floppy. I would blame the dancing in Tiffany’s case, but Cyrus was floppy, too, and Lord knows, Cyrus’s main thing is his ability to use sharp movements, so it must have been the choreography.

Group Dance: “Ein Kleine Nachtmusik (District 78 remix)” by KPM Studio Artists, contemporary?, choreographedy by Tasty Oreo

Kate: Neato!

Erica: I really liked it! Don’t tell Tyce.

Kate: Great song, great combination of styles. I wish we had seen much more of this throughout the season.

Erica: Seriously; it was so much fun. Well, it was fun the first two or three times I watched it. Zoe kept demanding rewatches, so by the sixth time, I was heartily sick of it.

Eliana Solo

Erica: I liked her video. She was saying, in her nicest Eliana-ish way, “Yeah, I really hated having to drag Cyrus’s ass across the stage every week, and then I had to watch him get all the votes while I ended up in the bottom at least once. It was such a relief to finally dance with a real dancer, Alex Wong. BTW, we’re doing it. Maybe.”

Kate: OMG. Her toes.

Erica: Um, yes. She is amazing. But also in the video when they showed her and Alex Wong dancing to “Bang Bang”, Zoe got really upset. “Her baby should NOT shot her. That’s bad.” Then she curled up in my arms and fell asleep.

Chehon & Season 2’s Allison: “Leave” by Once (original Broadway cast), contemporary choreographed by Stacey Tookey

Kate: In the words of Mary Murphy: WWWAAAAEEOOOOWWEEEE!!!!

Erica: Yeah, seriously. Good job, guys.

Kate: First of all, I am DYING to see this musical and/or movie, preferrably both, in that order.

Erica: Yeah, what is this? Is it new? I’ve never heard of it.

Kate: This was the definition of fantastic partnering. And Twitch is gonna kick his ass for kissing his lady (if she still is his lady?)!!! And, Er, Stacey really does have very cute hair.

Erica: Seriously, Kate, I think Twitch and Allison are seasoned performers who can handle this shit. Also, maybe Chehon IS straight?

Kate: Don’t you think while the judges were talking to him his smile said “Thank you, if I don’t win, I’ll kill you all”?

Erica: Yeah. Which he kind of should.

Eliana & Tiffany: “Mama Knows Best” by Chicago (1996 revival Broadway cast), Broadway/burlesque choreographed by Ray Leeper

Kate: How excited were you about this, Er?

Erica: Every once in a while, this show goes, “Erica Wovsaniker of Buffalo Grove, IL, what would you like to see happen?” And then they do this! Thanks, show!

Kate: I thought it was a cool concept but they actually didn’t look great together because of their totally different styles — Tiffany used hairography way too much and Eliana was almost TOO graceful and not raunchy enough, you know? But if this was the first time they used a pole on the show so it was still overall very cool.

Erica: Well, you know that show. Too raunchy is unacceptable. But it’s worth keeping in mind that this is actually what Eliana did for a living before she was on this show – she was a pole dancer with Cirque du Soleil.

Kate: And EW WHAT A MEAN Queen Latifah comment!!

Erica: I know, right?! As much as I loved this number, Queen Latifah’s rendition of the same in ROB MARSHALL THE MAKER OF THE MEAN COMMENT’S MOVIE was hotttt and he should STFU.

Cyrus Solo

Kate: This. Is. Not. Dancing.

Erica: I disagree. But I still have nothing interesting to say about solos.

Tiffany Solo

Kate: My my she is quite self-centered eh? Did you notice where she stumbled in her turns where Eliana never has/would?

Erica: I have to say, I feel her, because when we started, to me, she was just another tiny brunette contemporary dancer who I was going to mix up with the other one the whole time. And I understand that, if you’re on a show like this, you’re going to worry about stuff like that. And she wasn’t as gracious about discussing these issues as Eliana was, but she’s very very young. Jason was like, “Is she twelve?” when he saw her in the beginning, and honestly? She’s not far from it.

Cyrus & Chehon: “Fangs (District 78 remix)” by Little Red Lungs, choreographed by Sonya Tayeh

Kate: They sure do love their District 78 around here don’t they?

Erica: I am dorky enough that I only know District 78 through this show, and I almost started to wonder if they’re some sort of house band? Or, uh, house DJs or whatever?

Kate: This wasn’t as bad or awkward as I thought it would be, they acutally went better together than the girls, but Cyrus just doesn’t remember to extend and lengthen his movements the way it is just ingrained in Chehon to do.

Erica: Yeah, but they looked pretty good doing it.

Kate: Also, the judges didn’t critique this dance at all.

Erica: It’s the last show. They don’t want to say much.

Kate: Oh my god, they just had to try and outdo the wheel chair dance from last week didn’t they? What that cute little boy was doing was so dangerous, I can’t even.

Erica: I . . . didn’t watch. I had to get to sleep at some point.

Chehon Solo: “How It Ends” by Devotchka

Kate: I love this song!! I only know it from this show!

Erica: Okay. He is lovely. As per usual.

Eliana & Season Never’s Alex: “Without You” by Harry Nilsson, contemporary choreographed by Travis Wall

Kate: They are really great together, two ballerinas doing another style.

Erica: Yeah, I was remembering while I watched that Alex Wong more or less had the same story as Eliana and Chehon – trained, working, professional ballet dancers who wanted to, you know, bust out of their genre and have a little fun.

Kate: But why is he so tan?

Erica: Was it me or was the singer on this song kind of terrible? I feel like I’ve heard this song sung much better. But then Nigel was like, “I love this song by this guy” and I wondered if I was hearing things.

Tiffany & Chehon: “Love Me Tender” by Norah Jones and Adam Levy, rumba choreographed by Season 2’s Dmitry

Kate: Heinous cover. This is a cover of Elvis right?

Erica: Yes. I thought it was sweet but sort of boring.

Kate: I agreed with the judges, no chemistry at all, but beautiful movement. Why do they keep doing weird slow dances to the Latin ballroom stuff, though?

Erica: Well, rumbas are slow. Which is why I sort of don’t like them.

Cyrus & TWITCH!: “Like a Criminal” by District 78, animation, choreographed by Chris Scott

Kate: Holy moly.

Erica: Yeah.

Kate: But see it looked like it was teacher and protege dancing together; when Twitch does animation stuff he does it with so much style and it looks like he is still DANCING.

Erica: Totally disagree with you. I thought Cyrus looked better doing this than Twitch did because Cyrus had the sharper, pop-er movements. I mean, they both looked f-ing awesome and it was a great, great, great piece from all the participants, but Cyrus had a slight edge. Don’t yell; I already know you disagree.

Kate: Um, why would Nigel say that?

Erica: No, seriously, Nigel, why would you say that? You are a judge and an executive producer on this show. As a judge, it’s totes inapprops to say outright who you’re voting for on this show, and as an executive producer, it’s TOTES INAPPROPS for you to be voting AT ALL. God.

Anyway, see y’all next week for the actual finale. Eliana and Chehon should win. Eliana and Cyrus will win. And America, if Eliana loses? I’m leaving.

SYTYCD Season 9 – Top Six

Group Routine: “Scream” by Kelis, contemporary choreographed by Sonya Tayeh

Kate: This was pretty good I thought, good partnerning and separate dancing. And masks.

Erica: Yeah. I’m really into Sonya Tayeh this year.

Kate: But you can tell that Eliana really stands out from the other 2 chicks.

Erica: Well, all the group choreographers have been featuring her heavily. Because she’s the best. Duh.

Kate: I am supremely freaked out by Sonya having a full head of hair.


Kate: FINALLY! This is the Cat we know and love! Does the dress have a super-weird, almost-ugly pattern? Sure! Does the silhoutte still look absolutely great on her? Most definitely!

Erica: Yeah, despite the weirdness of the dress, she looked pretty good.

Kate: And her hair and makeup are appropriately sultry. Glad it’s the second-to-last episode and she’s finally looking normal.

Erica: Maybe next season they’ll go back to her usual elegance.

Kate: Weeeeee I love when Christina Applegate judges!


Tiffany & Season 2 Champion Benji: “What I Like About You” by Lilix, jive choreographed by Jean-Marc Genereux

Kate: Pretty sure I did a cheer routine to this song — particularly this version of this song — and it was even cornier than this, if you can imagine.

Erica: I loved this. I don’t care that it’s corny. I love a jive. It makes me happy. And this was a really good one.

Kate: I thought they were pretty great together and very in sync when dancing separate, and she did that super cool leg lift thing over his head.

Erica: Yeah. She did great. They did great together.

Kate: But, this was jive/swing? It felt a bit more jazzy/Broadway to me no?

Erica: It was a straight-up jive. I don’t understand what’s confusing to you about this. But let’s talk about the real issue here. Benji, dear, you have grown into a man.

Witney’s Solo: “Malaguerna” by Brian Setzer ’68 Comeback Special

Kate: Horrible. Actually horrible. Instead of shimmying her shoulders all around this time she shimmied her stupid half-dress thing all around. This was the first time I genuinely didn’t like anything about her performance.

Erica: The solos were short this time, right?

Kate: The solos are pointless every. Single. Time. Right?

Cole & Season 8’s Melanie: “Too Close” by Alex Clare, jazz choreographed by Sonya Tayeh

Kate: Oh I love this song. And Alex Clare. Er you might like him.

Erica: I liked this song.

Kate: But this seemed to actually be the wrong song choice if Sonya wanted me to believe Cole was representing “love”? The routine was good but not too memorable.

Erica: Well, he wasn’t “love” so much as he was “freedom”. From the one he loved. So, uh, that. But yeah, I agree. Good but not great. I have to say, they really try to sell Cole as this “does his own style” maverick-y untrained guy but he’s so clearly trained in a lot of things and just also has added his martial arts stuff to create something new out of a whole lot of learning.

Chehon’s Solo: “Way Back Home” by District 78

Kate: Wow he busted out some weird stuff this week huh? The music sounded like it came from Cyrus’s collection.

Erica: He’s so very good-looking.

Kate: His leaps and turns and legs in general are just sickeningly good.

Eliana & Season 4’s Twitch: “Please Mr. Postman” (District 78 Remix) by The Marvelettes, hip-hop choreographed by Chris Scott

Kate: Holy sh!t.

Erica: See, I was not super-thrilled.

Kate: I love this concept, I love this song, I love this remix of this song, I love this pair together; damn right Chris, Eliana IS funky! Bah!

Erica: I did love the song and the concept.

Kate: I NEED to be wearing her outfit. But not with a black bra.

Erica: Really? Underwhelmed by her outfit.

Kate: You know, I almost didn’t watch Twitch at all in this, she was that good. Her feet weren’t as quick as his but she was very…What’s the word? Magnetic.

Erica:  They are both magnetic but I felt like this could have been better. There were moves that seemed unfinished and I really think she could have handled a little more . . . something. I don’t know. I thought they looked better in the rehearsal footage than they did on stage.

Kate: Well then that’s the fault of Chris Scott, not them. And um can I do that dance convention thing in Vegas please? When is it?

Tiffany’s Solo: “Just the Way You Are by Carmen Reece

Kate: Basically the same as last week’s.

Erica: I liked a girl singing this song.

Kate: Well, you know how I feel about the other person who sings this song.

Chehon & Season 6’s Kathryn – “Eli, Eli (A Walk to Caesarea)” by Sophie Milman, contemporary choreographed by Tasty Oreo 

Kate: So the judges loved this, and I didn’t. I still love Chehon, duh, but maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for such an emotional routine because I really didn’t get it…What is so dramatic about living out of a suitcase?

Erica: You didn’t get it because for reasons I really don’t understand, they refused to say what it was about.

Kate: And there was that weird stumble when she climbed onto his back. Also, since when does he have an accent?

Erica: I think his accent is just a result of him being from everywhere. But let’s go back to this. Tyce said in the rehearsal footage, “In history, there’s been so many tragic events” and that this piece was about how you deal with the anguish of having gone through one of these generic “tragic events” and then have nothing left to you but a suitcase. The song was “Eli, Eli,” which, for those of you who don’t know, is a very popular Jewish song, the lyrics of which come from a poem by Hannah Szenes, a Jewish woman who tried to rescue Holocaust victims and was executed for her efforts. It was even used in Schindler’s List; it is a song very recognizably tied to the Holocaust. (The lyrics are quite lovely, actually. Here’s a link.) They dressed Kathryn in a very 1940s-refugee-ish dress. Then Nigel mentioned specifically all of the immigrants “in the ’40s” who came here with nothing but a suitcase, which, you know, there have been countless immigrants over countless decades who’ve come to these shores with nothing but a suitcase. He said specifically the ’40s, when a huge number of those immigrants were Holocaust survivors. And yet no one said the word “Holocaust.” Why? Why did that happen? I don’t get it. I want to call anti-Semitism, but I know my anti-Semitism trigger is a little jumpy sometimes. So let’s just call it weird?

Kate: Um, yea, if it was about the Holocaust, why didn’t they just say so? They have no problem over-talking about all other types of tragedies and deaths. I really was very confused.

Cole’s Solo: “Night of the Wolf” by Nox Arcana

Kate: Typical. He is wearing a skirt. I love his mom.

Erica: She’s the most enthusiastic mom in the world. She’s so cute.

Witney & Season 8’s Marko: “No Nothing” by Curtis & Reinhard feat. Blaire, lyrical jazz choreographed by Ray Leeper

Kate: Maybe she’s having second thoughts because that cotton-candy thing is her wedding dress. Cool stained glass lighting effect though.

Erica: Zoe designed that dress, too.

Kate: Wow, I had forgotten how great Marko is. This was a cool routine but I don’t think she proved she is as good as, let alone better than, Eliana (as IF) or Tiffany. Some of the running and jumping was very anticlimactic.

Erica: I didn’t love the choreography. I was kind of bored.

Eliana’s Solo: “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” by Death Cab

Kate: Beautiful.

Erica: I love this song!

Kate: Me too. But…I would put money on the fact that if directly competing with Chehon, her leaps turns and legs and general aren’t quite as good as his. She is obviously more likeable, though

Erica: She is also way more adaptable.

Cyrus & Season 4’s Comfort: “Cinema” (Skrillex Remix) by Benny Benassi feat. Gary Go, dub step choreographed by Chris Scott

Kate: As soon as they said “Cyrus”, “Comfort” and “dub step” in the same sentence I though, “Oh jeez what are we in for now?”

Erica: I was so excited for Comfort. I love her.

Kate: Why was she practicing with all that jewelry on?! Dance Rules 101 people!

Erica: 🙂

Kate: I thought the beginning was horrible and slow and the song was stupid, but then it picked up when they did all the synchronized hand things. They seemed very effortlessly together and fluid, but I cannot for the life of me separate this from regular old hip-hop.

Erica: Yeah, I don’t know. But I did like it.

Kate: But please God do not let this guy win.

Erica: He is going to win for the boys. America apparently loves him.

Witney & Chehon: “Where Have You Been” by Rihanna, cha-cha choreographed by Jean-Marc Genereux

Kate: Hey she danced to that last week!

Erica: Here’s a thing I am noticing. Not so much with that song, but Rihanna has more than one song in which she’s saying, “I am not capable of making emotionally healthy decisions in my relationships. Please help.” Including one song that is literally called “S.O.S.”

Kate: Well, I’m pretty sure she is a certified crazy person. Anyway, you could definitely tell he was quite uncomfortable up there, but he was still very precise in his movements. That lift messup made me cringe, and then I think they messed up a few other things so she then became almost as uncomfortable as he was, and by the end I think she wanted to scratch his eyes out because she was mad he made her look bad.

Erica: There were a lot of moments where they definitely looked like they had to think about the next step.

Kate: When can I see him dance with Eliana dammit?!

Cyrus’s Solo: “Harem” by Sarah Brightman

Erica: These solos were too short to really show anything this week. They should have just cut them.

Kate: Meh.

Eliana & Cole: “Adagio for Strings” by Brno Philharmonic Orchestra, contemporary choreographed by Mia Michaels

Kate: Oh, Cole is doing “hatred” again, how unique MIA. This was actually quite beautiful and dramatic, I had chills at the end when they did that silent scream thing.

Erica: I thought it was awesome EXCEPT for the silent scream thing. Well, not that it was bad, but that was, like, three dances tonight with screams. Choreographers? You all okay?

Kate: But…Um…Rams, Mia?

Erica: She’s so weird. But in a totally awesome way. I thought this was great.

Tiffany & Cyrus: “Treat Me Rough (Girl Crazy)” by Debbie Gravitte, Broadway choreographed by Spencer Liff

Kate: She was great in this, very passionate. He was O-kay, not as good as she was but still fun to watch. Good use of prop (for once) with the tie.

Erica: Yeah, it was. I thought they were super-cute and I liked her more than I usually do.

Kate: Is it just me or did Cat look royally pissed off about something all night? Maybe it was the sultry makeup?<

Erica: Really? I thought she was even more cheerful than normal. But I wasn’t paying that close attention.

Kate: Oh my goodness that wheelchair dance made me so very nervous. He was really dancing in a wheelchair though, so that’s impressive. And dangerous.

Erica: I . . . didn’t watch. Because I’m a bad person. And I had to get this out before leaving to pick up my daughter from preschool.

Kate: Not at all surprised by the results, but does that mean Tiffany had MORE votes than Eliana?! Unacceptable, America.

Erica: It doesn’t necessarily mean that. I think they knew that there was more suspense in the Witney/Eliana question than a Tiffany/Witney question. I hope, anyway, that that’s the reason. If Tiffany wins the girls over Eliana, even though she’s very good, America, we are through. Through.


Anecdote Time!

I used to go to the New York(e) Renaissance Faire with my parents every summer when I was a kid. I loved the belly dancers, the puppet show (which is no more), and just the entire ambience. And every year I would get all dressed up. Not in Renaissance gear – my parents were not the Renaissance nut jobs that buy $300 get-ups for their children – who are going to grow, for goodness’ sake! No, I’d just pick my favorite or most Renaissance-y dress and then when we got there, I’d get to pick out a flower garland for my hair and it was super-exciting.

But one year I got really upset. Because one year my stepdad insisted that we go see the Mud Men or some such, guys who much about in mud pits, and I did not want to go. There seemed to be limited opportunity for girls in pretty dresses in that setting. But we went, anyway. And my prettiest dress got splashed with mud. And I was very upset. And from then on, my stepdad went to see the Mud Men himself while my mom took me to some other show. If I recall correctly, which, very possibly, I do not.

We stopped going when I was in my early teens or so, and then when I had a car, I decided to start going again. The puppet guys were gone, which was sad, but it was still a lot of fun, and suddenly there were new delights, like that totally cute guy who was doing the face painting.

But I still wouldn’t go see the Mud Men.

And now I live in Illinois and I go to the same company’s Bristol Renaissance Faire (in Kenosha, Wisconsin. There is no Bristol, Wisconsin. Guess how confused I was by this the first time I went?) and I’m a grown up with a child of my own and everything.

And I still won’t go see the Mud Men. Even though they’re not even the same Mud Men.

But. My brother just went to the New York one, and he reported back to me that the Mud Men are no longer there. And even though I don’t ever want to go to see the Mud Men show, this news is making me a little sad.