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S01.E08: The Semi-Finals

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The contestants, mentors, judges and hosts join for a dance number; the four remaining kid couples advance to the semi-finals, where they each perform two dances.

Airs December 2, 2018.

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I don't know who's going to win but I have a feeling it might be the kid from Blackish.  He's on a TV show and his partner is Lindsey's little sister.  Or....they all get Mirror balls.

Don't get me wrong, Sky is adorable but she needs to cut back on the speeches.

I feel for McKenzie because she lives in the shadow of her older sister when it comes to dancing and 'fame'.

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Sky and Ariana are so cute. Something told me they would be friends. I loved their duo dance.

I don't mind Sky's speeches - I think the whole world of dance is new to her and she see's how seriously Alan and JT take it - and she wants to do well for them. Her speeches are her way of saying she is thankful.

I wouldn't mind if Miles/Ariana/or Sky won. They are all so talented.

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Sky and JT are just the most adorable. Also, apparently according to Instagram, Alexis is visiting Sky in Tokyo. The bond between Sky/Alan/Alexis is just so adorable. In the video, Sky tackles Alexis with hugs. Like, literally knocks her over onto a couch and just hugs her to death. SO cute. 

Kenzie is great, but she really, really should have been on the adult version of the show. She's like the dance version of when you go home from college for the holidays, and you're STILL sitting at the kids' table. That's Kenzie. 

Edited by Italian Ice
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Good thing I DVR'ed last night and watched it later.  I was able to fast forward through Kenzie, the critique, only to find out NO ONE GOES HOME.

 

WTF!  What a waste of a night.

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I actually am in agreement with the judges for a change.  The Miles/Mackenzie duo/fusion dance is also my favorite of the entire series thus far.  Good choreo, good performance, high energy, just plain fun to watch.  I actually watched it three times.  I simply enjoyed it.  Which is very much what was missing from the entire season 27 of the adult series.  It was just never fun.  I never really enjoyed anything about it.  Sure there were some impressive and memorable performances (the Cheryl-Juan Pablo AT comes to mind), but I wouldn't call it fun.  And if nothing else, a silly show like DWTS should at least be fun.  A hiatus of DWTS from my TV screen really is in order.

Brief note to Skye:

Dear Skye, you are an adorable, precocious, and impressive young woman.  Now, enough with the speeches.  Please.

That's about as sensitive as I can do it.

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I don’t mind Sky’s speeches, plus I usually don’t watch the show live, so if it gets excessive, I FF through it. I did prefer Mackenzie’s and Miles’ duo slightly more than Sky’s and Arianna’s. Sky’s team is still my favorite, but all 4 are deserving. I like how they had some of the things that have been missing from season 27 and some previous seasons of DWTS. I agree Mackenzie should have been on the adult version of the show.

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Just sitting and watching the show yesterday, you really have to wonder why Mackenzie wasn’t on the adult show. She’s clearly WAY beyond anyone else in this competition technically and just seems so out of place. This is nothing against her, just the producers who put her on the show.

 

That aside, I think my clear favorite to win at this point is Sky just because of how much she’s improved for coming in with zero experience. She handled that extremely difficult choreography on the tango like a champ. I honestly don’t mind the speeches too much. Like someone said earlier, she really is just thanking her mentors for all their hard work. All that being said, I wouldn’t be upset at all if Ariana or Miles won. They all deserve it just as much.

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I do know who wins so spoilers aside, every time the DWTS Jrs. social media accounts or somebody associated with the show posts a thing asking who fans/viewers are rooting for, the overwhelming response I see is Sky/JT with a good dose of Miles/Rylee.  I also don't think it's necessarily about their pros either, especially in Alan's case since while he does have fans he hasn't been a pro long enough to have a mega fanbase.  I'm not surprised that Sky/JT have really struck a note with fans, but it did surprise me some that I don't see quite as much support for Ariana considering both she and Sky are the same age and little and cute.  Miles I can also understand because as a celeb he's probably also more known to the non kid watchers of this show. I know at Thanksgiving my 70 something aunt volunteered that she was rooting for "the kid from Blackish" and he's the only kid my 40 something sister recognizes on sight.  Also said aunt was very, very pissed about Bobby winning and thought Milo was robbed but wrong thread for that.  I guess I just thought Ariana and Sky would be duking it out for fan love.  Mack has a lot of fans but she also has a LOT of detractors for all the reasons mentioned here.  Her age, her background...etc.  I don't think a lot of people watching Miles realize how old he is based on his size, so I think that is working to his advantage.

Anyway, this entire show is way more feel good than anything I've seen on DWTS in a long time.  I didn't even mind the fake out on nobody leaving because all four of them are really good and are worthy of being in the finals and the reaction from the kids, IMO, was genuine.  It may seem like a cop out to us, but it's a big deal to them.

I did love the Party in the USA dance and while it was more seamless than the Sky/Ariana one, again we are comparing two 14 year olds with dance experience to 10 year olds (though I think Ariana has SOME experience).  Also I think Sky/Ariana got the harder dance assignment.  It was still very good though.  All the partner routines were very good.

Also because I can't say it enough, I'm really getting a lot of Alan love out of this show.  Showmance on the regular show aside, he's an excellent mentor for Sky.  Tough and pushing her into doing hard choreography, but incredibly nurturing and motivating for her as well.  Brandon is doing really well too, though I think his biggest thing in rehearsals is reigning in Ariana and Aryton's extreme energy and keeping them focused.  Also JT who I didn't LOVE when he was little and on SYTYCD is also a wonderful partner for Sky.  Rylee is great, but I always feel physically she and Miles are a bit of a mismatch.  I know it's largely the height thing and to be expected at this age and especially for someone like Miles who is tiny, but it always throws off my visual of those two.

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2 hours ago, spanana said:

I do know who wins so spoilers aside, every time the DWTS Jrs. social media accounts or somebody associated with the show posts a thing asking who fans/viewers are rooting for, the overwhelming response I see is Sky/JT with a good dose of Miles/Rylee.  I also don't think it's necessarily about their pros either, especially in Alan's case since while he does have fans he hasn't been a pro long enough to have a mega fanbase.  I'm not surprised that Sky/JT have really struck a note with fans, but it did surprise me some that I don't see quite as much support for Ariana considering both she and Sky are the same age and little and cute.  Miles I can also understand because as a celeb he's probably also more known to the non kid watchers of this show. I know at Thanksgiving my 70 something aunt volunteered that she was rooting for "the kid from Blackish" and he's the only kid my 40 something sister recognizes on sight.  Also said aunt was very, very pissed about Bobby winning and thought Milo was robbed but wrong thread for that.  I guess I just thought Ariana and Sky would be duking it out for fan love.  Mack has a lot of fans but she also has a LOT of detractors for all the reasons mentioned here.  Her age, her background...etc.  I don't think a lot of people watching Miles realize how old he is based on his size, so I think that is working to his advantage.

Anyway, this entire show is way more feel good than anything I've seen on DWTS in a long time.  I didn't even mind the fake out on nobody leaving because all four of them are really good and are worthy of being in the finals and the reaction from the kids, IMO, was genuine.  It may seem like a cop out to us, but it's a big deal to them.

I did love the Party in the USA dance and while it was more seamless than the Sky/Ariana one, again we are comparing two 14 year olds with dance experience to 10 year olds (though I think Ariana has SOME experience).  Also I think Sky/Ariana got the harder dance assignment.  It was still very good though.  All the partner routines were very good.

Also because I can't say it enough, I'm really getting a lot of Alan love out of this show.  Showmance on the regular show aside, he's an excellent mentor for Sky.  Tough and pushing her into doing hard choreography, but incredibly nurturing and motivating for her as well.  Brandon is doing really well too, though I think his biggest thing in rehearsals is reigning in Ariana and Aryton's extreme energy and keeping them focused.  Also JT who I didn't LOVE when he was little and on SYTYCD is also a wonderful partner for Sky.  Rylee is great, but I always feel physically she and Miles are a bit of a mismatch.  I know it's largely the height thing and to be expected at this age and especially for someone like Miles who is tiny, but it always throws off my visual of those two.

Will you please invite me to Thanksgiving next year so I can high five your aunt? Or, please high five her on my behalf- whatever works best! 😉

I would have never guessed that Miles had to learn the dance via video because of work restrictions and only having one day of rehearsal (dress rehearsal!). His impressive professionalism and overall demeanor never cease to amaze me (take a note, BB!). 

I was floored that Mackenzie got a 30 with the Paso Doble. She made mistakes and they were noticeable. I know they’re Juniors, and call me crazy, but I expect zero mistakes for a perfect score. 

Mackenzie also made mistakes in the duo dance, but I still watched it 5 times because it was THAT good. I never watched Dance Moms, but there is something about her that I don’t like; can’t put my finger on it though. I noticed she danced in heels; maybe that caused her mistakes? 

I liked the duo dances a lot, especially as it allowed the audience to see the competitors dance with others to see how they stack up. Everyone is good when they dance with their partner, but I really liked the duos option because it provided a context to compare how good the celebs are compared to each other. 

Training and experience aside, I enjoyed watching Rylee dance next to Mackenzie & Miles dance next to Sage. Even with the little kids, I liked that I could “compare” Ariana to Sky and JT to Artyon. 

The one thing that I’m not wild about (other than Adam and Frankie) is all of the gymnastics that pop up on the ballroom floor. I get it: the kids want to do and see backflips because it looks cool (and it does), but there aren’t any handless cartwheels in a salsa. Would it really be that hard to add a basic step during 4 bars instead of a back handspring?

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12 hours ago, JerseyGirl said:

Good thing I DVR'ed last night and watched it later.  I was able to fast forward through Kenzie, the critique, only to find out NO ONE GOES HOME.

 

WTF!  What a waste of a night.

This show feels sooooo long. It started at the same time as DWTS and is the same length (presuming the finals are next week?) and yet, it's still going on. I get that they've skipped a week or so for whatever reason but geez, this feels like it is the longest 9 week limited series ever.

Edited by McManda · Reason: It's a week series, not a well one
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It's only taken me until the semifinals, to come to the obvious conclusion that Rylee Arnold is a little force of nature. Miles is amazing (and has picked up more proper technique than anyone on this show this side of Skye)...but my eyes are constantly drawn to Rylee.

I don't know what projects it would involve, but we've not seen the last of her on TV (pre-her DWTS adult debut in Season 43)...I would bet money on that.

Edited by PhD-Purgatory15
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4 hours ago, Bridget said:

Training and experience aside, I enjoyed watching Rylee dance next to Mackenzie & Miles dance next to Sage. Even with the little kids, I liked that I could “compare” Ariana to Sky and JT to Artyon. 

 

Sooooo, how did all these match ups stack up for you?

 For me......JT outdances Artyon. Sage is older and larger all around so it's difficult to judge him because he looks like an adult next to these smaller kids.

Makenzie also looks like a adult and is matched very well with Sage but looks out of place on this "Juniors" show. She also dances like a trained dancer.

The Sky and Ariana match up, for me, was sort of a draw. They both cancel each other out. I honestly didn't see any difference in their dancing or their stature. They are both deserving of the trophy but I want Sky to win because I want JT to win too.

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And, everybody goes through to next week...

I am very impressed at how Miles has done the past couple of weeks, considering his schedule. I've been thinking that either Sky or Ariana will win, but now I think he might edge them out.

I thought all of the dances were pretty good tonight. 

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6 hours ago, Bridget said:

The one thing that I’m not wild about (other than Adam and Frankie) is all of the gymnastics that pop up on the ballroom floor.

This annoys me as well.

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19 hours ago, spanana said:

I do know who wins so spoilers aside, every time the DWTS Jrs. social media accounts or somebody associated with the show posts a thing asking who fans/viewers are rooting for, the overwhelming response I see is Sky/JT with a good dose of Miles/Rylee.  I also don't think it's necessarily about their pros either, especially in Alan's case since while he does have fans he hasn't been a pro long enough to have a mega fanbase.  I'm not surprised that Sky/JT have really struck a note with fans, but it did surprise me some that I don't see quite as much support for Ariana considering both she and Sky are the same age and little and cute.  Miles I can also understand because as a celeb he's probably also more known to the non kid watchers of this show. I know at Thanksgiving my 70 something aunt volunteered that she was rooting for "the kid from Blackish" and he's the only kid my 40 something sister recognizes on sight.  Also said aunt was very, very pissed about Bobby winning and thought Milo was robbed but wrong thread for that.  I guess I just thought Ariana and Sky would be duking it out for fan love.  Mack has a lot of fans but she also has a LOT of detractors for all the reasons mentioned here.  Her age, her background...etc.  I don't think a lot of people watching Miles realize how old he is based on his size, so I think that is working to his advantage.

Anyway, this entire show is way more feel good than anything I've seen on DWTS in a long time.  I didn't even mind the fake out on nobody leaving because all four of them are really good and are worthy of being in the finals and the reaction from the kids, IMO, was genuine.  It may seem like a cop out to us, but it's a big deal to them.

I did love the Party in the USA dance and while it was more seamless than the Sky/Ariana one, again we are comparing two 14 year olds with dance experience to 10 year olds (though I think Ariana has SOME experience).  Also I think Sky/Ariana got the harder dance assignment.  It was still very good though.  All the partner routines were very good.

Also because I can't say it enough, I'm really getting a lot of Alan love out of this show.  Showmance on the regular show aside, he's an excellent mentor for Sky.  Tough and pushing her into doing hard choreography, but incredibly nurturing and motivating for her as well.  Brandon is doing really well too, though I think his biggest thing in rehearsals is reigning in Ariana and Aryton's extreme energy and keeping them focused.  Also JT who I didn't LOVE when he was little and on SYTYCD is also a wonderful partner for Sky.  Rylee is great, but I always feel physically she and Miles are a bit of a mismatch.  I know it's largely the height thing and to be expected at this age and especially for someone like Miles who is tiny, but it always throws off my visual of those two.

You have some very good opinions on here and I agree with most of them,

12 hours ago, PhD-Purgatory15 said:

It's only taken me until the semifinals, to come to the obvious conclusion that Rylee Arnold is a little force of nature. Miles is amazing (and has picked up more proper technique than anyone on this show this side of Skye)...but my eyes are constantly drawn to Rylee.

I don't know what projects it would involve, but we've not seen the last of her on TV (pre-her DWTS adult debut in Season 43)...I would bet money on that.

I am super impressed with Miles too, especially considering he learned a lot of it on video. All of those Arnold sisters are spunky and good dancers.

I find Sky slightly more likable than Arianna. I really like Miles though.

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12 hours ago, luvthepros said:

Sooooo, how did all these match ups stack up for you?

 For me......JT outdances Artyon. Sage is older and larger all around so it's difficult to judge him because he looks like an adult next to these smaller kids.

Makenzie also looks like a adult and is matched very well with Sage but looks out of place on this "Juniors" show. She also dances like a trained dancer.

The Sky and Ariana match up, for me, was sort of a draw. They both cancel each other out. I honestly didn't see any difference in their dancing or their stature. They are both deserving of the trophy but I want Sky to win because I want JT to win too.

Yeah, now that all of the other older (or larger, since apparently Miles is older than he looks) contestants are gone, Mackenzie and Sage really look out of place. If Milo could compete on the adult show at 17, that must mean there's no 18 and over rule, so the only reason I can think of for them not wanting her on that version is that she'd be a 14-year-old girl dancing with an adult man? They are dancing very well, but it's just so jarring to see them emerge after a stream of little kids.

The matchup between Sky and Arianna showed me that Sky is technically a little better (or was in that dance anyway). Arianna's got the attitude that sells the dance beyond the technical (Sky does too, but Arianna's acting background is working for her here). Between the two, I'm rooting for Sky mainly because of JT. I thought I would hate all of these child pros for being little stage monsters, but he is adorable. Their hugs don't look like the forced "look at our teamwork" hugs that some of the others did (especially with people like Scottie Pippen's daughter who clearly didn't want to be touched so much), they look like genuine little kid hugs. Very sweet. Plus, I like JT's concentration during their rehearsals, he really seems to be trying and isn't constantly hamming it up.

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Also because I can't say it enough, I'm really getting a lot of Alan love out of this show.  Showmance on the regular show aside, he's an excellent mentor for Sky.  Tough and pushing her into doing hard choreography, but incredibly nurturing and motivating for her as well.  Brandon is doing really well too, though I think his biggest thing in rehearsals is reigning in Ariana and Aryton's extreme energy and keeping them focused.  Also JT who I didn't LOVE when he was little and on SYTYCD is also a wonderful partner for Sky.  Rylee is great, but I always feel physically she and Miles are a bit of a mismatch.  I know it's largely the height thing and to be expected at this age and especially for someone like Miles who is tiny, but it always throws off my visual of those two.

It's really too bad that this show didn't air before the adult version because I think Brandon would have had a stronger following in his pro debut if people could have seen him here. I love his approach to the insane energy of Arianna and Artyon and that he's able to wrangle them long enough to put together some great performances. 

I'm also surprised at how much I like Alan here since I can't stand him on the regular show. I think the difference is that he's not competing so he's not constantly mugging for the camera and being annoying. He's so great with the kids and so much more likable than I ever thought.

Totally agree on the mismatch in size between Rylee and Miles (never more evident than in the group dance where he looked like a mascot among adults). He's an amazing dancer and they pull it off, but it might have been nice if they'd given him a pro anywhere near his own size. 

Going into this, I assumed a Miles win since he was one of the most famous (and on an ABC show), but I think the emergence of Sky/JT and Arianna/Artyon might put him out of the running. Also, I think with his schedule, his energy OFF the dance floor is lower than the others who are there full time and the chemistry with Rylee isn't quite there either for the same reason. 

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Brief note to Skye:

Dear Skye, you are an adorable, precocious, and impressive young woman.  Now, enough with the speeches.  Please.

That's about as sensitive as I can do it.

 

The speeches are driving me bananas, mainly because they sound like pageant speeches being fed to her by a stage mom. I have a hard time believing that a 10-year-old is coming up with these. It was semi-cute the first time, but her tendency to grab the mike and ramble on has gotten really old, it even seems like the judges and hosts are over it. The thing I liked her about her initially was how genuine she seemed, but the speeches are making me rethink that.

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Regular DWTS has had a 14 year old contestant before so there is no known age limit for regular DWTS.  Maybe the producers have a behind the scenes rule that changes based on the producers at any given moment, but Willow Shields competed with the adults at only 14.  She's still the youngest ever to do that show.  Then I believe we had 15 year old in Hayes Grier and maybe more that I don't remember and we've had a bunch of 16 year olds.  Laurie Hernandez, Zendaya, other people who I probably can't remember.  I always wonder how Mack feels competing against the little kids, but I guess that is true for Miles too.

As for the gymnastics, I think it's happening because most of these kids are coming in with gymnastics skills so it's easy "wow" things to give the kids that they already know how to do.  I'm not talking about the lifts, like the lifts in Sky's AT were lifts appropriate to the AT, but more all of the flips the kids do.  I think much of the upcoming generation of dancers, for which cross training across all genres is being pushed, so is having a basic gymnastics trick repertoire.   Most of our adult pros can't do the tricks the kids are doing.  But anyway, I think it goes back to every generation of dancers becomes more and more crosstrained.

Also when comparing kid pros keep in mind that several of them aren't really ballroom dancers or have varying levels of training.  It seems like the show was looking for kid dancers who had some ballroom experience but they didn't need to be extensively experienced as long as they were cross trained and telegenic.  Aryton, as far as I know, is not a ballroom dancer.  Or likely a fairly newbie ballroom dancer.  Whereas kids like Rylee and Jenna's neice Hayley, actively compete on the ballroom circuit. JT I don't think is a ballroom dancer, or didn't start as one, but I think he has more ballroom experience than Aryton so I would expect JT to be better at ballroom.  Also a lot of the younger female pros also compete in contemporary and most of their accolades are in those genres.  Like Emma's little pro Eliana just competed in her first ballroom competition the other day (and Emma was there!) and she's taking ballroom lessons/training now but that wasn't her first style of dance.

Comparing Sky and Ariana is interesting.  On first watch, I thought Ariana was the better technician.  I also agree with what Mandy mentioned last week that Sky can at times get either ahead of or behind the beat.  However I find that Sky has that intangible way of connecting to the audience on the floor.  I also think she and JT partner better than Ariana does with Aryton and come off as more of a unit, but as per above, that might also be Aryton's lack of ballroom training coming through.  I feel like the pros with more ballroom training are naturally better at partnering.  See Jake Monreal with Sophia. 

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In terms of Sky’s speeches, again it’s mainly due to the very positive audience reaction. Kids her age don’t know any better so when they receive that much of an applause for what they’re doing, they’re more likely to continue it. I think if she was older, she would definitely tone them down. IIRC, I think she’s the youngest contestant left on the show.

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I agree that this show is really going to help Brandon and Alan on the regular show.  Lindsay is already popular and Gleb is Gleb.  I still don't like him. 

I thought Sky was better than Ariana in the duos on first watch.  I don't know if my opinion would change after multiple watches because I don't watch any of these Jr. dances more than once.  Mackenzie's and Mile's duo dance was better but they also had an easier combination.  It's easier to combine a samba with jazz than it is to combine jive with a foxtrot.

Also agree that gymnastics is put in because it's a wow factor.  Also, I don't believe the judges take points off for stuff like that.  There's also no lift police like CAI because I think Ariana's feet was off the floor for a little bit during her foxtrot.

I'm also a little tired of Sky's speeches but she's so cute.  I still like her and JT together.

Glad there wasn't an elimination because I think all four of them are good.  This was the right four for the finals so that worked out better than the regular show.  For the most part, the eliminations were correct for this season.  We didn't have a Joe or Bobby hanging around far too long.  It's still sad to see the kids cry even when they're happy like Sky was last night.

I do think Val didn't want to give constructive criticism because these are kids.  He could do better with that.  I think Jordan would have made a better judge than Adam but I like him as a host too.  Next year if there is one, they could use Miles to replace either Adam or Frankie.  To be honest, I actually like Adam over Frankie.  He's not a good ballroom judge but he does know something about performance.  That's what he seems to be critiquing.  At least, he's staying in his lane.  I don't think Frankie meshes well with the kids when he's hosting.  He looks young but he's a lot older than somebody like Jordan or Miles.

Edited by realdancemom
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26 minutes ago, realdancemom said:

I do think Val didn't want to give constructive criticism because these are kids.  He could do better with that.  I think Jordan would have made a better judge than Adam but I like him as a host too.  Next year if there is one, they could use Miles to replace either Adam or Frankie.  To be honest, I actually like Adam over Frankie.  He's not a good ballroom judge but he does know something about performance.  That's what he seems to be critiquing.  At least, he's staying in his lane.  I don't think Frankie meshes well with the kids when he's hosting.  He looks young but he's a lot older than somebody like Jordan or Miles.

I think the difference is Adam is annoying in his inane-ness re: judging and I don't love when he just endlessly tells the kids how cute they are in his over the top way, but Adam himself isn't awkward.  I think the issue with Frankie is he comes off awkward.  He doesn't really know how to interact with the kids off the cuff and he doesn't have the warm and fuzzies with them the way Jordan does.  The way Jordan interacts with the kids comes natural.  It looks like he loves kids and the kids adore him, which is evident from their social media feeds too.  Frankie doesn't need to be besties with the kids to do his job, but you can see the disconnect and uncomfortability at times, which is why having Frankie interview the kids doesn't work.   Like one cute thing Jordan did this week was when Mandy was asking Sky if she remembered what her biscuits were and she clearly didn't and Jordan casually moved his feet to nudge hers to give her the answer.  I also don't think Frankie does well with working on the fly.

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50 minutes ago, spanana said:

I think the difference is Adam is annoying in his inane-ness re: judging and I don't love when he just endlessly tells the kids how cute they are in his over the top way, but Adam himself isn't awkward.  I think the issue with Frankie is he comes off awkward.  He doesn't really know how to interact with the kids off the cuff and he doesn't have the warm and fuzzies with them the way Jordan does.  The way Jordan interacts with the kids comes natural.  It looks like he loves kids and the kids adore him, which is evident from their social media feeds too.  Frankie doesn't need to be besties with the kids to do his job, but you can see the disconnect and uncomfortability at times, which is why having Frankie interview the kids doesn't work.   Like one cute thing Jordan did this week was when Mandy was asking Sky if she remembered what her biscuits were and she clearly didn't and Jordan casually moved his feet to nudge hers to give her the answer.  I also don't think Frankie does well with working on the fly.

Yeah, I feel bad saying it because I like Frankie a lot, but he's definitely awkward. Then again, he's in the role previously inhabited by the likes of Samantha Harris (oh, the monitor in my ear is telling me to wrap it up, so let me just YANK the microphone out of your hand mid-sentence...) and the block of wood that was Brooke Burke, so at least there's a precedent for not being good at that job. Erin Andrews was an improvement, IMO, but the role of DWTS interviewer has historically never been great. Especially compared to Tom Bergeron.

Jordan is already socially smooth and he clearly gets along great with the kids. I find his "hosting persona" a little grating at times, but the interaction with the kids is genuine. I also noticed the foot nudge, I remember rewinding to see if it was Alan or Jordan who did it. Very cute. I also remember Arianna nearly knocking him into the audience with a flying hug in one of the early weeks, lol.

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In terms of Sky’s speeches, again it’s mainly due to the very positive audience reaction. Kids her age don’t know any better so when they receive that much of an applause for what they’re doing, they’re more likely to continue it. I think if she was older, she would definitely tone them down. IIRC, I think she’s the youngest contestant left on the show.

Oh definitely. She got a big response the first time, so she keeps doing it. But the content of what she's saying sounds very rehearsed and like she's fed lines by an adult. I'm always picturing a stage mom out in the audience mouthing along (not saying she has one, I know nothing about her, but it makes me think of Pageant Moms who do that). I believe Arianna is also 10, so she and Sky are the 2 youngest left. I'm loath to admit this since they are both only 10, but I'm slightly jealous of how stunning they both are. Lots of little kids are cute but grow up to be average looking adults, you can tell that these two are going to grow up to be gorgeous.

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Glad there wasn't an elimination because I think all four of them are good.  This was the right four for the finals so that worked out better than the regular show.  For the most part, the eliminations were correct for this season.  We didn't have a Joe or Bobby hanging around far too long.  It's still sad to see the kids cry even when they're happy like Sky was last night.

The eliminations are so much sadder on this show than on the regular one, it's hard to see little kids cry. Of this foursome, the one I'd be least sad to see go is Mackenzie, she's a little older and could probably handle it better. But I agree that the eliminations have been pretty spot on. There were a few contestants that maybe went one week out of order in terms of dance ability (like Honey Boo Boo should have been week 1 elimination based on dance alone), but this feels like the right final 4.

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It's only taken me until the semifinals, to come to the obvious conclusion that Rylee Arnold is a little force of nature. Miles is amazing (and has picked up more proper technique than anyone on this show this side of Skye)...but my eyes are constantly drawn to Rylee.

See, I'm the opposite, I never watch Rylee because I'm always drawn to Miles. I went back to the watch their duo dance to see Rylee and I have to say that while she's a great dancer, there's something slightly awkward there. It seems like she went through a growth spurt and hasn't quite adjusted her dancing to her new height yet. 

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22 minutes ago, ljenkins782 said:

Yeah, I feel bad saying it because I like Frankie a lot, but he's definitely awkward. Then again, he's in the role previously inhabited by the likes of Samantha Harris (oh, the monitor in my ear is telling me to wrap it up, so let me just YANK the microphone out of your hand mid-sentence...) and the block of wood that was Brooke Burke, so at least there's a precedent for not being good at that job. Erin Andrews was an improvement, IMO, but the role of DWTS interviewer has historically never been great. Especially compared to Tom Bergeron.

See, I'm the opposite, I never watch Rylee because I'm always drawn to Miles. I went back to the watch their duo dance to see Rylee and I have to say that while she's a great dancer, there's something slightly awkward there. It seems like she went through a growth spurt and hasn't quite adjusted her dancing to her new height yet. 

I don't think Riley is awkward, but I think she hasn't entirely grown into her new body and limbs yet, which happens at that age.  It says a lot about Miles though that for his size he doesn't get lost out on the dance floor with tall larger than life Rylee. 

One advantage Frankie has on this show is that it's taped though.  There might be a live audience but I bet they had them re-do things at times at tapings if needed.  Not the actual dancing, but the other stuff.  If Frankie or Jordan mess up a cue, they can reshoot it.  Also editing can edit out blunders.  But I think the number one thing you need in a co-host of this show is someone that has a natural ease with children.  Frankie always comes off to me like the weird dad who is trying to hard to be hip, but not remotely pulling it off.

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40 minutes ago, spanana said:

It says a lot about Miles though that for his size he doesn't get lost out on the dance floor with tall larger than life Rylee. 

I agree! I am astounded at how great he did in both those dances just by learning them from a video and only getting to practice with a partner on dress rehearsal! I even was drawn to watching him on the duo dance despite being the smallest out there; I thought he looked almost as good as Sage in the duo dance and he definitely has great stage presence to sell the dances. I think Arianna and Sky do too, but for me Miles seems more natural whereas the girls it feels like a put on performance (much like the speeches).

I started out rooting for Sky and Arianna, and I would be happy if either won, but right now I think Miles deserves it the most. I think the over all order everyone has gone is correct; maybe the original show should change to studio votes only too to fix the problem they had this season!

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30 minutes ago, Ilovepie said:

I agree! I am astounded at how great he did in both those dances just by learning them from a video and only getting to practice with a partner on dress rehearsal! I even was drawn to watching him on the duo dance despite being the smallest out there; I thought he looked almost as good as Sage in the duo dance and he definitely has great stage presence to sell the dances. I think Arianna and Sky do too, but for me Miles seems more natural whereas the girls it feels like a put on performance (much like the speeches).

I did notice one or two tiny spots where you could tell that he wasn't used to practicing with an actual person. Like where they were dancing by themselves, but then had to get in hold, it looked like he remembered at the last second that he had to get with a real person, lol. Shows that he was definitely practicing on his own. It's amazing that with all the synchronicity in that routine, he was always in lockstep. 

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I started out rooting for Sky and Arianna, and I would be happy if either won, but right now I think Miles deserves it the most. I think the over all order everyone has gone is correct; maybe the original show should change to studio votes only too to fix the problem they had this season!

Seriously. Even if they just switched it to one vote only per person per medium, that might help. I don't vote anyway, so I wouldn't care if just the studio audience got to vote.

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6 hours ago, spanana said:

........ See Jake Monreal with Sophia. 

I would have loved to see Jake compete in the finals. Besides JT as my favorite male pro, Jake was second for me.

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I just want to say...WOW, what an episode! This was the type of show I was hoping for when the idea of DWTS Juniors was first introduced.

While there are always things that could be criticized, I was just genuinely impressed by all four pairs. The amount and difficulty of the dance content required of the kids was incredible and they were all so dedicated in performing them to the best of their abilities.

The fact that they taped two episodes a week, which means these kids had half the time as the adult show to prepare these dances, is even more incredible.

This show obviously draws comparisons with the adult DWTS show, but I want to hold it as a model for SYTYCD as well. There is no excuse for a show with experienced dance contestants to have ballroom routines with watered-down content and technique when these kids can show you how it's done!

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I like Miles, Sky and Ariana and have nothing against Mack, but I have a hard time with the who should win or who deserves it the most since it's not really fair to be comparing 10 year olds to 14 year olds.  That is a world of difference maturity wise and a million other things.  So I can rationally compare Miles and Mack to each other and Ariana and Sky to each other but can't really otherwise.  I know we do it all the time with the adults, but adults are adults.  To me there is just such a huge developmental difference between 10 and 14.

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2 hours ago, Madding crowd said:

I think little kids doing tango type dances looks so weird. These are romantic type dances and the outfits and moves are made for adults. 

I don't have a problem with it and nor did I think there was anything wrong with Sky's AT dress...if it anything it covered up far more than most of the regular costumes.  Not that I"m complaining about those either, as the costumes have IMO generally been appropriate for their various ages.  I haven't had much issue with the costumes, other than assuming the costume budget was low since the troupe basically wears the same blah black outfit in each episode.

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On 12/4/2018 at 9:42 PM, spanana said:

I like Miles, Sky and Ariana and have nothing against Mack, but I have a hard time with the who should win or who deserves it the most since it's not really fair to be comparing 10 year olds to 14 year olds.  That is a world of difference maturity wise and a million other things.  So I can rationally compare Miles and Mack to each other and Ariana and Sky to each other but can't really otherwise.  I know we do it all the time with the adults, but adults are adults.  To me there is just such a huge developmental difference between 10 and 14.

Miles and Mack are the same age. And they represent so perfectly why middle school is so awkward - some 14-year-olds look like little kids and some look like grown adults. 

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17 hours ago, Adrienne2729 said:

Miles and Mack are the same age. And they represent so perfectly why middle school is so awkward - some 14-year-olds look like little kids and some look like grown adults. 

Agreed.  For the record, I don't really think Mack looks like an adult.  She just looks like an adult compared to all of the other kids here who are either little or lanky.  If anything for this show I think its much to Miles advantage his size here because while I've seen lots of complaining about Mack, both for her background and her age, that hasn't happened for Miles.  I'd hazard to guess much of the at home audience doesn't even realize that Mack/Miles are the same age or that he is 14.  I know they did the year you were born week but I doubt people were paying that close attention to their birth years. I had no clue when the season started that Miles was 14.  I would have guessed about 12.

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