Abby Lee Miller is known for pushing boundaries on Lifetime’s “Dance Moms,” previously having the girls at her studio dance with (toy) guns and perform a routine about suicide, but Tuesday’s (March 6) episode may have been the most egregious example yet: The dancers, ages 7-11, were tasked with performing a showgirls fan dance routine in costumes meant to make them appear nude.
Yes, nude. Yes, ages 7-11.
While the hosts of “The View” surely weren’t the only ones with a beef about the episode, they were certainly vocal about it during Wednesday morning’s chat, with Sherri Shepherd pointing out that the routine sexualizes children, and that Miller may not be at fault.
“It’s the mothers,” Shepherd says.
Guest co-host Raven-Symone, who says she regularly watches the show, adds, “I want to remember what not to do [as a mother].”
The dance itself — a burlesque-style routine with large pink feather fans covering where the girls were “naked” underneath — was provocative, but that wasn’t where Whoopi Goldberg saw a problem.
“I don’t mind the dancing, but that costume — because it makes them look naked,” she says.
“It’s to sexually arouse your audience,” Shepherd adds of the traditional showgirls’ costume (or lack thereof).
Miller had this to say about the costumes during the episode, “The idea of the fan dance is you give the illusion that you’re nude underneath the fans, which, c’mon, we all know you have tan bras and tan tights on. Everyone in the industry knows that the girls are completely covered and everything is harmless.”
“I guess all the girls and I feel kind of nervous because we feel kind of naked,” dancer Chloe said during the episode.
Did Miller push the envelope too far? Are the mothers more at fault? Or was the whole thing really as harmless as Miller makes it sound?