Just as hip hop was inevitable, so was this week’s focus on modern. Luckily for the Step It Up & Dance kids, they have the perfect guide. Too bad my cable connection was all wonky and I kept missing chunks of the episode. I shake my fist angrily at my receiver.


This week’s guest judge/choreographer is Jacques Heim who is the founder of Diavolo, a famous modern dance company, and the choreographer of Cirque de Solieil’s "KA." Which means we’re in for some wacky yet fantastic stuff.

The Audition is avant garde bed jumping with spoken improv at a mattress store – the theme being a couple who’s just fell in love and is going to buy a mattress. Mochi and Miguel are the first pair. They frolic and both end up partially in their underwear. Janelle and Michael are the second pair. Their approach was one of childlike glee. This leaves Nick and Cody as partners, meaning a gay couple, and they were hilarious. Mochi, Nick and Cody are in the first group while Jenelle, Michael and Miguel are in the other but they won’t know which is the chopping block team until the next day. Miguel figures he’s in the Elimination Group since he’s with Michael. Again.

The challenge is to choreograph and perform a two-minute modern routine using the apparatuses that Jacques created. Mochi, Nick and Cody practice first. Mochi takes the lead of creating the story – Nick and Cody as brothers playing and she as the sister who wants to join in. They have the most problems with "The Atom," which is a big circle with circles in it. It’s pretty crazy. Their theme is strong but the two hour rehearsal is over before they had time to finalize the piece.

The second group is next and the have a similar theme of "hide and seek." Michael, again is having technique issues which once again ticks off Miguel. At the end of rehearsal, Miguel addresses Michael lack of training and him not "pushing boundaries" as much him and Janelle in front of Jacques (who expresses his concerns to his troupe about how they don’t have two whole minutes choreographed).

Michael and Miguel get in another fight at the apartments but that all must be put aside the next morning as Miguel gets up early to plot out the rest of their dance.

On performance day, Project Runway winner Jeffrey Sebelia pops up to dress the dancers. The twist tonight is that everyone is up for elimination and everyone is up for the win. During her team’s run-through, Mochi cracks her knee on The Atom and injures herself three hours before the performance. To be safe, they’re taking her to get an x-ray.

It’s 10 minutes to showtime and Mochi has just returned. Fortunately, she only has a contusion on her knee as opposed to it being a kneecap crack so she’s mostly okay to perform. She wants to do the dance full out but Cody expresses concern about her physical wellbeing so they change some of the choreography.

Both teams perform to "The Sweet Escape" by Gwen Stefani. I’d give you my opinions about both dances but my cable sputtered out quite a few times and I don’t think it’d be fair to critique something I haven’t seen in its entirety.

Cody has immunity so he’s safe. Addressing Michael, Miguel and Janelle’s group, Elizabeth asked if there was as much of a problem working together this time. Michael and Miguel addressed their issues but said they put their problems aside. Miguel got major brownie points for coming up with the choreography while Janelle and Michael both got mostly negative comments (again with Michael’s lack of technique).

Jacques really laid into Mochi for not performing through her injury and changing the choreography. Cody steps up and takes responsibility for wanting to protect Mochi. Nick got upgraded from being called straight vanilla to having "added some chocolate chips" this week.

The winners conversation was unsurprisingly between Michael and Cody. The elimination conversation is between Michael and Janelle. Cody won this time but didn’t win immunity. Mochi, Nick and Miguel are all safe.

So what it really comes down to is Michael’s lack of training versus Janelle’s inconstancy. And faulty technique is always the bigger sin. It’s Michael’s time to go. But at least he and Miguel made some peace before the end.

Does anyone think Janelle should’ve gone home instead? Anyone? I don’t but she’ll be next if she doesn’t pull it together. I figure Cody is the frontrunner now, though I think Mochi could be big competition.

Posted by:Tamara Brooks