Big news for So You Think You Can Dance fans from Monday's session at the TCA press tour. Jessica King, who slipped into the top 10 last week, is out with an injury, and Comfort's taken her spot in the competition.
Nigel Lythgoe wouldn't be specific about the nature of her injury or the time that it happened — though he said he hopes Jessica herself will be available to do that on the show this week. Comfort hadn't left LA yet when Jessica had to drop out, and she was back in rehearsal as of Monday morning.
In fact, all of the top 10 dancers were in rehearsal, which was a bit of a bummer, since I'd really been hoping to check out Twitchington in the flesh. Instead, we got a foxtrot from Kourtni and Matt (who really are that tall) and a solo from Thayne (who really is that smiley) before Nigel, Mary Murphy, Cat Deely, and Mia Michaels took the stage for some Q&A. Some highlights:
- Mary explained that she'd been using her "hot tamale train" expression for years to describe dancers — typically fiery ballroom dancers. The hot tamale train typically doesn't pull into the station during more emotional performances, no matter how much Mary likes them; she's usually too close to crying for that. Also, if some couple gets two tickets on the hot tamale train, that means Mary thinks they're headed for the finale. Now we know.
- Mia doesn't think she's a mean judge. "I'm just being very honest," she said. She insisted that in rehearsals she's "Mama Mia" and the dancers look to her for tough love.
- When the choreographers work with the dancers, they have an hour and a half on Friday and three hours on Saturday — and that's just about it.
For a little more — including a new pairing Nigel accidentally revealed — just
- Courtney and Joshua will be dancing together! Woohoo!
- Nigel was still obviously upset when asked about Robert quitting earlier this season. "No dancer should quit," he said. "At any point. Ever." He said he'd be curious to see if Robert backed down from his potential dance battle with Phillip Chbeeb next. Ouch.
- Nigel's philosophy on SYTYCD, American Idol, and other shows where the audience votes: "The public often get it wrong. But at the end of the day, they sort of put it right — it's along the way they get things wrong." He used as an example Tamyra Gray getting kicked off Idol but Kelly Clarkson rightfully winning.
- Nigel noted that that the past two years, the finale has pitted a brilliant dancer (Travis, Danny) against a brilliant performer (Benji, Sabra) and the performer has come out on top.
Photo courtesy of Fox