Dance Moms Recap: “99 Problems But a Mom Ain’t One” [Episode 1]

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“Dance Moms” is back! It’s Season 5, and LOTS has changed...Abby Lee Miller claims she has only changed for the better. She’s a little lighter, so I guess that’s a start! Kendall, Nia, Maddie and MacKenzie have reported back, along with moms Jill, Holly, and Melissa. Nationals ended on a nasty note, and left the audience wondering what would happen this season with Abby’s favorite scapegoat in tights, Chloe. We learn from the girls that all communication extended to Chloe has been ignored, and she evidently is not coming back. Holly believes that it all feels odd, but knows that the girls are strong and need to COURAGEOUSLY face their next…dance class?

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We relive the nasty spat between Chloe’s mom, Christi and Abby when we last saw them, and learn that Abby left the ball in Chloe’s court and that she is welcome to return. However, Abby is committed to that business we call SHOW, and needs to move on, minus the sweetest dancer and most challenging mom. Abby wants the girls branching out into singing and dancing, with performing in LA as the goal…onward and upward for the ALDC, LA style!

We recap nationals and it is announced that the team is headed to Niagra Falls with Nia and Kendall scoring the solos. The group routine is entitled Freak Show. You can’t have a competition team with just four girls, and Melissa thinks that getting drunk to deal with the change is the wisest strategy.  The moms wonder what’s going on with Christi and Chloe, and can’t believe that this could be permanent.  Abby surveys the group number, declares it a mess, jumps on her phone and voila!

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A new dancer, well a sort of repeat dancer, jumps on a plane and rushes right over. Kalani is back, with the assumption that her mother, Kira has gotten over her daughter being second fiddle to Maddie, a role that every member must submit to.  Nia’s solo is called ‘Street Star’, and Holly seems to be morphing from conservative teacher, to rabid stage mother right before our eyes. Kalani shows up and looks about 2 years older than the last time we saw her, and Kira swears that they are there for the long haul this time.  Holly is miffed that Kalani has scored a solo, and whines to Kira about it instead of blaming the one who summoned her from afar.  We get a taste of Kendall’s solo, and Jill and Abby classically yell at each other over Kendall’s level of fabulousness.

The moms obsess over social media banter put out by Christi, aghast at a post calling Abby’s trampling of Chloe week after week, ‘ugly’. GASP!! To make matters worse, Kelly is retweeting it! The conclusion is made that Christi, and previously crapped on mom, Kelly have joined forces to DESTROY Abby. Holly feels betrayed because the destruction of the teacher who she declares as a ‘horrible woman” every week, means hurting Nia’s chances for stardom.  Battle lines have been drawn, and a bloody war is declared…and all before ballet class!  The next morning as the team is packing up to go, we hear the news that former dancer, Paige, daughter of Kelly, is suing AbbyJill declares that the remaining team needs to rally around Abby, and they set out.

On the bus we see several of the girls without makeup and they look fabulous and NORMAL. Thanks for the harlot break, Lifetime!  They arrive to screaming fans holding We Heart Chloe signs…whoopsie! Jill is relieved that everyone still loves them minus the team sweetheart. Kendall rocks her Zena Warrior Princess solo, ‘Warrior’, and other than jumping around half naked, the dance is cool.  You all should know from the get go that I HATE the skimpy costumes that these girls are shoved into week after week, and fully believe that the art of dance can be creatively expressed without pre-pubescent girls being paraded on stage barely dressed. Nia follows and aside from the cryptic costuming, I found it forgettable.

Dance Moms

Kalani is up next, and this girl appears far more mature, and is a stunning dancer, but the theme of the number was a bit adult…but what else is new? The excited mood is broken when Abby gets a phone call from a neighbor, tipping her off that the local news is at her home, wanting the scoop on Paige’s lawsuit. OK, where isKendall’s spear? IT IS ON! Abby thinks that the time is appropriate to dump the shrieking threats for just a brief moment to deliver an inspirational speech, sure to soften her screaming, abusive banshee image. The group dance is cool as usual, wins first place, Nia gets second, and Kendall wins first, with Kalani winning second in the older division. Then a TRULY odd moment occurs when the announcer publicly proclaims a friendship with Abby, and declares that despite the negative social media uproar, the world of fake dance competitions supports Abby Lee Miller 100%.  We end with Abby addressing the audience with a mini “believe in yourself, even when you’re routinely trampled into the dirt” speech.  It was beyond bizarre, and obviously had Lifetime’s fingerprints all over it.

How will this war play out?? The battle rages on next week!


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