Dance Moms begins with a rarely seen phenomenon on this show. Nia communicates concern over her dying grandfather to Abby, and Abby actually puts on a caring supportive face…maybe she is thinking that this is her big chance to leave Nia in the Pittsburgh dust? Holly speaks of Nia’s “so fast” growing up as if she has been living on the gritty streets of Pittsburgh, not as someone whose mother CHOSE to have her grow up in the dance studio of a shrew. Abby’s giant mats of eyelashes almost dislodge in her empathetic distress for Nia.
The girls assemble for pyramid, and we learn that JoJo and her giant bows have returned to share their sass for another week. Abby looks at them in disgust for winning a lousy second place last week, as she reveals that Nia is on the bottom of the pyramid for being a lame leader, Mackenzie is on the top, with Maddie landing in the middle for being away, working with a plethora of celebs in LA. Abby scolds JoJo for being mouthy and rude, and her mom is puzzled because mouthy and rude is JoJo’s brand. Kira complains about the pushy bow pusher, and imitates her speech impediment, which annoys her mom because she has worked long and hard develop her daughter’s big mouth. Kendall, Maddie and JoJo are given solos and the group routine is called ‘Frozen Together’. The group rehearsal begins, and the women launch into their weekly snipe-fest. Jess is touching up JoJo’s roots, and we hear about their plans to win over Abby’s cold, dark heart. Solo nuggets revealed, as Melissa brags about all of the opportunities that have opened up for her girls. The other women roll their eyes and worry that their girls will never see the same chances, the concern that never dies, as long as Maddie is around. JoJo struggles in the group rehearsal, whips out her brand of sass, and mouths off to Abby, which gets her kicked out of the group dance. Abby reminds the women that she is their girls’ manager, and to back off from seeking jobs on their own when they land in LA.
Kendall has a good rehearsal, and apparently this is a crazy occurrence and warrants a high five phone call to Jill from Melissa. We sit in on a mildly uncomfortable scene with Nia and her ailing grandfather, and it is weird and awkward, maybe designed to make us feel the hard sacrifice of living in the gritty streets of the ALDC. The team arrives in Woodbridge, Virginia to screaming hoards of fans, and Nia’s grandfather gives her an encouraging phone call, cheering her on. Abby is overjoyed at the camera picking up her made for TV, joyous support. Abby gets word that the age divisions have shifted, and lashes out at JoJo for asking a simple question at the wrong moment. The women cluck about what the problem could be, as Abby stammers out the horror of the bumped up age division. Maddie takes the stage, and dances beautifully, as usual.
Kendall performs and it’s cute, but a little low energy. JoJo sasses it up, and looks great, especially because she’s not talking. The pressure is on the team because of the higher age division, and Jess believes that yanking Nia and plunking in JoJo to lower the age division is the right thing to do for the team. Holly is incensed and Abby actually does the right thing and says no, because JoJo’s loud yapper doesn’t blend in anyway. The group performs and it’s lovely, but I wish that the team of behind the scenes makeup artists would show themselves, and explain the Hollywood level makeup that these girls parade around in each week. Awards are doled out to a shockingly small group of dancers. JoJo wins third in her division, and Kendall wins the same in the teen division. Maddie wins first and the group gets second. Two second place finishes constitutes a losing streak, which makes everyone nervous. Abby announces that Maddie has booked a TV show, and the women drone on about the favoritism for Maddie that has been obvious from day one. Abby reminds the girls that second place doesn’t win auditions, and JoJo is officially booted from the team. Abby agrees to represent her bratty behind in LA and Jess thinks that she is lucky to be able to represent her daughter’s sassy butt. They shriek at each other in closing, withAbby advising that she call ex-cast member Christi, for advice on executing a solid bleach job.
Oh, snap! Abby is heading for a “breakdown” next week…see you then!