It’s the last week in Pittsburgh, before the ALDC heads west on this week’s Dance Moms. Maddie is in New York to do SNL with Sia, and Melissa is disappointed that she can’t be there to bask in her star power, instead of having to hang with her snoozy and less successful daughter. It’s pyramid time, and Abby reminds the team to feel blessed that she’s there with them instead of hanging with Maddie in New York. Maddie is probably feeling pretty blessed herself. She congratulates the girls for a clean sweep, as they line up Chorus Line style with their head shots. They beat those rotten apples good last week, and everyone is happy. Abby points out that Mackenzie dances like a baby, and Nia is progressing and doing well at hiding her countless flaws. They are headed to Ohio this week, and know that they are sure to face Cathy and her Apples.
Abby thinks that Cathy is out for blood, and that her reject dancers will probably gel better this week. JoJo and Mackenzie are chosen for solos, andMackenzie is challenged to figure out her separate identity. The group dance is a jazz funk number, where they will play the Spice Girls. We skip over to Ohio, where we relive Abby’s rejection ofCathy’s current dancers. Cathy thinks that Maddie’s absence cracks open the door for a long overdue win. Back at Abby’s, the moms banter about the group number, and believe that Abby is avoiding their strength in the lyrical genre because Maddie is gone. Melissa nails them for chronic complaining, and Jill quickly takes back her criticism. Abby reminds the group that Maddie won’t be there to distract from the rest of the group’s mistakes, and that they need to head to LA on a high note.
Cathy has finally figured out that clean lyrical numbers win, and decides that if she can’t beat ’em, she should just join ’em. She has a team full of Kalanis and thank goodness, no Nias, and things are looking bright for a win. JoJo’s number is called “Fancy” and as the girls watch her rehearse, Jess tells us that she wants her to show Abby that she deserves to be on the team. The moms remind her thatMackenzie is Abby’s second favorite, and that JoJo will have an uphill climb to compete with Abby’s adopted owl baby. Abby wants to challenge Mackenzie to carve out her own star identity apart from her sister, and believes that performing as a dancing owl could be her breakout performance.
Melissa sees no problem with Mackenzie being identified with Maddie, because she has carved out a niche as a successful child singer who plays on a hit TV show. The moms want Melissa to tell Abby to can the comparisons, and Melissa responds by shrugging it off. Mackenzie is flapping around as an owl, forgets her steps and admits to forgetting the dance. Abby scolds her for acting scattered, and Melissa jumps in to defend her home schooled ‘educational’ smarts. Mackenzie wishes her mom would shut it, because her dumb interjections just make things worse, as she flutters out of rehearsal.
The Spice Girl dressing room is abruptly interrupted when a photo update of Maddie comes through, and through all of the ooohs and aaahs, Mackenzie snarks that she is feeling great as an only child. Jill believes a win would be good for Mackenzie to prove that she can win out of Maddie’s shadow. The Spice Girl roles are doled out and explained, and rehearsal begins. The moms think that it is a great routine to head into LA with, but Jill doubts that it’s a competitive number. The team arrives in Cleveland to the usual hoards of screaming fans. Cathy and the moms trip into the ALDC dressing room like a herd of bleating goats, and we relive a classic Abby moment when she recommended an ear pin back to a young ALDC hopeful. Abby remarks that Cathy is simply ridiculous to aggressively pursue such drama, and is disgusted that the moms buy into it. Melissa calls the obnoxious group a huge distraction, as Jess chants schoolyard insults at them as they file out.
The girls prepare to go on, as we are reminded by Jess that Abby spent most of her time with baby Mackenzie to assure her a win. Melissa hopes that Mackenzie will pull it off, since Maddie is gone, and she’s stuck in Cleveland instead of NYC. Mackenzie performs and is cute, but her tricks are beginning to look repetitive. Jess comments that Mackenzie’s tricks are getting old, and she might want to take a few dance classes as she gets older. JoJo performs and she is great, and Melissa labels it a “typical JoJo solo”. The mini Spice Girls are ready to go, as Maddie calls to check in and thank Abby for not coming to NYC and embarrassing her in front of Sia. The group performs and it’s fun, although a little more scattered than usual. The Apples hit the stage, and the lyrical number is lovely, although the styling is a typical gaudy fail. Holly comments that she knows a rotten copycat when she sees one, but agrees that the dancers did well. The winners are announced, and Mackenzie wins second and JoJo nails first.
The group routine wins second, with the Apples victoriously grabbing the top prize. The Apple moms whoop it up, while Abby glares forward through squinted eyes. Cathy gleefully whips out a cake with a gaping trout picture of an Abby head on it, and the group parades down to the ALDC dressing room to present the snarky treat. Abby doesn’t buy into the nonsense and chooses to blurt “go get your ears pinned back” to the earlier mentioned dancer. Her mom rages after her like a snorting charging soccer mom, and chases her down the hall bellowing, while the ALDC moms reassure and comfort the dancer. The charging bull mom blathers that she was humiliated…mostly by her ridiculous overreaction, that made the nasty remark much worse. We are heading west next week…the ALDC is LA bound, and I will see you there!