“So You Think You Can Dance”: I’d Tap It

Tap-tap-tap. This guy’s got it.


The second episode of season ten auditions took us to Detroit, where apparently everybody has a crew that kicks ass. Guest judge tWitch was both discerning and ebullient on the panel, and he added a boost of muscular fun to Nigel and Mary’s kooky medicine show.

The five best auditions were eeeeeeasy to rank. Dare you to disagree!

5. Darryl “Smilez” Hall and 4. Prince Charming are a coupla Jit-terbugs. 

These two vivacious members of a pulsing, pounding “jit” crew were the clear standouts in their klatch, and I hope they take it as a compliment that one of the most mesmerizing things about their segment was tWitch’s gobsmacked reaction. He couldn’t help but hoot and gawk at the spectacle at hand, and though Prince Charming’s primed, isolated motions were superior to Smilez’ whole routine, I really enjoyed the near-uncontrolled urgency Smilez dished out. Sometimes a little raucous, less-than-tempered energy is what this show needs. A bit of the feral, and not just in Mary’s octave-jumping giggles.

3. Amy Yakima proudly outdances her father.

I get antsy when contestants put us through impromptu theater starring their non-dancer parents, and when Amy Yakima’s father performed “dad jazz” for us, I called the estate of Miles Davis and requested a hit-man. Then of course, Amy turned out to be quite the mover, stunning us with a contemporary routine that featured one unforgettable set of rotations. Is she distinct enough for placement in the top 10? Maybe, but for right now I’m just a strong admirer of her pleasant, sometimes commanding stage presence.

2. Jade Zubieri shocks and locks.

I love performers (specifically animators) who weave moments devoted solely to charisma into their performance. With Jade Zubieri, we were treated to choreography that combined elements of undulation and convulsion in a single motion, but perhaps more importantly, his vaudevillian facial reactions to his own performance played a key role in his success. He was serving serious skill and a bit of cheeky comedy, and that level of audience perception and self-awareness is very reassuring. So far, he’s a total champ.

1. Tyrone Cobham Jr. is tappable!

There is no greater feat on So You Think You Can Dance than reigniting interest in a faded dance genre. Tyrone Cobham’s tap routine was both quaint (note the Savion Glover-style baggy jeans) and refreshing (note his hotness). Also: DID YOU JUST DIE when his grandmother said of watching him dance, “I”m mesmerized” before catching herself choking up and apologizing? R.I.P. me.

Oh, those balletic final spins! This guy is pure jubilance. Wonder if he’s into shirtless performance. Then he’d be my SAVIOR Glover. Sorry, sorry, not sorry, sorry.