SYTYCD: Paula’s Sour Note Spoils A Fun Opening Night

So You Think You Can Dance

So You Think You Can Dance returned for its 12th season sporting a three-judge panel which included Jason Derulo, Paula Abdul, and Nigel Lythgoe. I’ve always liked the very pretty, popular and personable little Paula with the big heart, though she can sometimes be annoying with the “silly” antics. I knew nothing about Jason Derulo, but in the course of the show he stole my heart with his genuinely open smile and graciously endearing rapport with people, not to mention he’s handsome, too. And Nigel is the beating heart of this award-winning arts and entertainment phenomenon that I’ve watched faithfully for all twelve seasons — which I can’t say of any other TV program, including American Idol.

Last night, viewers from my neck of the woods included sister Kate and her husband Randy who live down the hill, and my Mike and me. Katie and I hit the cell phones during every commercial to share our play by play commentaries. We have a ball doing that. The fact that the husbands hung around for the entire show was a high endorsement of this year’s arts and entertainment offering. That usually doesn’t happen. And is WAS a fantastic show. On up until near the end.

I’ve spent an hour or more looking for the name of the little fellow who auditioned in a three-piece suit, which he wore because of the style he was dancing. He called the routine a cross between ballroom and hip hop. But I could never find anything about him on the internet, not even his name. Paula was already giggling before the young man even got to the microphone. Nigel called the style of ballroom and hip hop “ball hop”, which sent Paula and Jason into paroxysms of laughter. The young man was polite and eager to show his dance style.

But a long, protracted, and uncomfortable length of time was spent with the viewers having to watch Paula and Jason laugh at him. Even though Paula tried to assure the boy they weren’t laughing at him, they were doing just that by going into giggling conniptions the whole time. The boy wasn’t stupid. He knew he was being laughed at. He was humiliated, and at one point looked like he might walk off the stage. And this was even before he performed.

The performance was not bad. Though it wasn’t quite a ticket to Vegas routine, the young man was not a bad dancer. It just would have been better if he had not combined the two styles. He probably would not have made it through even then, but he did not look like one of the idiots that invariably pass through each year — which the show has toned down to some degree, thank goodness.

The young man’s style of dress matched the old-fashioned Fred Astaire type performances and was completely appropriate for what he was doing. Then Paula rubbed salt in the wounds she had opened by trying insincerely to compliment the vest and suit and battling the giggles the whole time. Even though Jason had joined her in the mocking ridicule, Paula was certainly the instigator.

During the following commercial when sister Katie answered the phone we were in total agreement. We were both incensed and terribly disappointed. We had all enjoyed the show up to this point. It was like listening to a good orchestra and just before the end the musicians hit a sour note. It left us with a bad taste in our mouths toward the whole opening show.

Now I know that some auditions are allowed just for the comedic effect, and they are funny. But this episode with the performer in the nice suit was not one of those. This was a whole different scenario.

The young man in question deserves a public apology from SYTYCD and judges Nigel, Paula, and Jason. Sincere apologies. I want the judges to see their actions from the boy’s point of view. Here are three people who have “made it” as far as fame and fortune are concerned. They have all the advantages he doesn’t have. And they have just ridiculed and laughed at him on national television. It was unconscionable. I view it as a form of bullying.

Shame on you, Paula, Jason, and Nigel. You three have a long way to go in your grasp of how to treat people who do not have your advantages. I suggest a long and sober introspection. (I mean “sober” as in being serious, rather than “sober” as in not being inebriated.)


24 thoughts on “SYTYCD: Paula’s Sour Note Spoils A Fun Opening Night

  1. I’m back and I’ve now watched the show. I’ll get the unpleasant part over first. I just reread what you said about Paula and her laughing fit at the end. I don’t think she or the other two were laughing AT Jaden Ziara. What Paula found so hilarious was Jaden referring to his style as “ball-hop”….a combination of ballroom and hip-hop. Get your mind out of the gutter, Paula. It wasn’t even that funny a play on words. However, I don’t think Jaden knew WHAT the laughter was about and surely must have felt very uncomfortable during it all. As you said, a terrible way to end the night.

    Comments on a few of the dancersw:
    Peyton Albrecht, first dancer up, was good, but I didn’t care for his routine.

    Jordan Hilenberg was exquisite. She had incredible extensions. She could win.

    The “jookin” woman was great and I loved when her students and Jason all came up on stage.

    I liked the 19-year-old valet parking attendant. He was VERY good. I doubt that he’ll be parking cars for much longer.

    Jaclin Hamric – Gorgeous routine, very fluid. She’s an absolutely beautiful dancer and a very pretty girl.

    Edson Juarez was the last dancer of the night and I thought he was terrific.

    I watched all the street dancers, but I DO NOT care for them, with rare exceptions. I think the producers have to include them to keep the show popular though.

    Kiosh – Great street dancer and I loved that he brought so many people up on stage. I liked the suggestion that he do a workout video with Richard Simmons. I wonder why they didn’t put him through.

    • Thanks for the in-depth reply. I enjoyed reading it all.

      My impression was that Paula and Jason were laughing at him even before the unfortunate ball-hop tag, and I also thought that it was Nigel who came up with the moniker. But as I was having to watch it live and distracted, I will take your word on how it went down since you have it taped.

      But I agree that the laughing was out of place and humiliated the young man.

      I enjoyed reading your reviews of the other candidates and agreed with them all, though how you can keep up with all these names is more than I can say. My head starts swimming. They really had some fantastic dancers. I think it just gets better every year. I hope they keep the standards up. I know some of the street dancers may not be able to do choreography, but some have surprised us in the past. I like those kinds of surprises.

      Have a great day, friend.

      • Hmm, you may be right about Nigel being the one who coined the term “ball-hop.” It certainly sounds like a Nigelism.

        “…though how you can keep up with all these names is more than I can say. My head starts swimming.”

        Well, I cheat. 😉 Since I always tape the show to avoid the ads, I can pause it to read the dancers’ names when they’re shown on the screen. I have a pad and pencil at the ready while watching, too. I find it amazing that you always seem to know their names when you post videos of the performances you especially liked. I don’t know how YOU can do that without the benefit of Pause or Replay.

        As for the street dancers doing choreography, I wonder if they will have to. Since they have their own category this season, maybe that won’t be expected of them.

      • I sometimes take notes, but have gotten lazy. Katie and I discussed how the season might go this year with so much change, but, gosh, we’ve seen some really really gifted dancers. Did you see the one from Israel this week? Gorgeous and talented.

  2. ” I knew nothing about Jason Derulo, but in the course of the show he stole my heart with his genuinely open smile and graciously endearing rapport with people, not to mention he’s handsome, too.”

    His real name is Jason Joel Desrouleaux. He’s been a singer/songwriter since a very young age and has sold over 45 million singles. He dated Idol winner Jordan Sparks for three years, breaking up in late 2014.

    “On March 28, 2012, Derulo appeared on American Idol to announce he would allow fans to help him finish the lyrics for a new song entitled “Undefeated”, as part of a partnership with American Idol and Coca Cola. Fans were given the opportunity to submit their own lyrics to complete the song, and fans were then given the chance to vote on which lyrics they liked the most.”

    I like most of his music and he’s very personable. I think he’ll be a good judge.

    • Jo Ann, Thanks for the info on Jason. Katie and I thought he might have been the one on American Idol. Actually, it was Katie who remembered him. And we liked him very much, now that you two have jogged my fading memory. I also think he will be a good judge, though there have been some blogging naysayers. But . . . hey. Whatta they know? Right?

      • “I also think he will be a good judge, though there have been some blogging naysayers. But . . . hey. Whatta they know? Right?”

        You’re welcome. I guess all of us have had to eat our words at one time or another. I recall how against Misty Copland as a judge I was, but I ended up doing a full 360. First impressions aren’t always the best nor are snap judgments.

    • My gosh. I forgot you had sent it to me. Yes. I read it through and through and did a review of it. Maybe you read it and forgot it. Are our memories like the blind leading the blind? I’m so disgusted with myself. I’m going to check into a nursing home.

      • “Are our memories like the blind leading the blind? I’m so disgusted with myself. I’m going to check into a nursing home.”

        LOL Let me know if you find a good one and I may join you. The mother-in-law of my friend in Charleston, SC is moving to a gorgeous one. Fortunately, she has money because it cost $65,000 just to move in and almost $3500 a month after that. I could be VERY happy here.

      • I’ve visited friends in some very nice assisted living, but I’m going to live out my life in an RV on the road, God willing. If and when Mike and I get too old to take care of ourselves, maybe we’ll just drive off into the wilds and go naturally. No lines, tubes, machines. Just fade off into the sunset. A good medical plan if you can get it.

  3. “Did you see the one from Israel this week? Gorgeous and talented.”

    Yes, and I agree. I took notes last week so I could discuss the show with you, but didn’t realize you were away. I didn’t take notes this week. As I said, I record the show and watch it later, originally so I could skip the ads, but now so I can FF through the street dancers. They do nothing for me. I did like the girl in the black and white striped pants. And the two male ballet dancers totally blew me away. LOVED them, especially the Korean man. The girl with the horrendous leg injury was amazing. I noticed that she never landed on that leg, probably because there isn’t enough muscle left to support her, but the fact that she’s even able to walk astounds me. What determination!

    Other stuff: I saw your GOT comments, directed at Michael, I think. Did you see the finale? Wow! So many cliffhangers, loose ends, unanswered questions. I thought Cersei’s “Walk of Shane” lasted too long, but the rest of it I’ve learned to live with. I never got this far with the books so I don’t know if Benioff and Weiss have strayed from the original.

    I agree that Benedict Cumberbatch is one of our finest actors and I was delighted to learn about the birth of his son. Ben’s an only child so his parents must be thrilled to have a grandchild. Here they are with Ben as a baby. This new Cumberbaby is likely to be beautiful, too.

    Looking forward to your review of the latest movie you thought was terrible.

    • Sorry, I don’t watch GOT. Mike and I watched part of the first episode. It was not for us. And that’s a shame because the actors are awesome. We knew that right away.

      Cumberbatch favors his baby self and his parents are good looking. Love the name Cumberbaby for his new little tyke.

      • oops! I could have sworn you and Michael were discussing Game of Thrones at some point. Yes, the acting is fantastic, but the story is brutal and gruesome. I agree that it’s probably not for you.

        “Cumberbaby” is a name coined by members of his fan club who refer to themselves and the “Cumberbabes.” LOL His parents are both actors and in fact played Sherlock’s parents on an episode last season.

        And they accepted his Emmy for “Sherlock” for him because he was in England. Starts at 1:30 in the video.

        His mother is still a beauty.

        I don’t know if you watch “Downton Abbey but his father played a judge in that.

      • Yes, Michael and I were discussing Game of Thrones, with my point of view based on the books. I had seen enough of the series to know I would not watch it, but have heard various famous people who do. It’s a fascinating story, just with no core and no sense of humanity whatsoever. It does make for a good discussion, though. Michael’s views really expanded my thinking about its impact and purpose. Thanks for the updates on the Cumberclan and the links. We watched Downton Abbey a few times and enjoyed it, but it’s hard for us to invest in a continuing series.

      • “Yes, Michael and I were discussing Game of Thrones…”

        Glad to know I haven’t completely gone off the rails. 🙂

  4. I am the boy you speak so pleasantly of in this post. I appreciate your kind words and support! The whole scenario also did not help in the sense that I had some big family problems that had happened minutes before I was on. I’ve been acting, singing, and dancing since I was four and intend to actually choreograph and stick to a routine next year instead of half heartedly changing it a day before the performance! With that being said the humiliation was just as much deserved as it was given. Hope you see me next year and thank you for your kind words again!


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