It starts like this: All-Star tWitch, choreographer WilldaBeast, and Usher's "Yeah." Simply put, that is a recipe for perfection. Take a look at tapper Valerie and tWitch's hip hop routine from last night's So You Think You Can Dance.
There is so much to love about this routine. Valerie's fingerless gloves. That little bit of Kid n' Play. tWitch attacking her wedding dress. "Yeah" being relevant for the first time in ten years. In fact, I've crunched the numbers, and the only way this routine could have been any better is if they had danced to "Ignition (Remix)" or—if they'd really wanted to stay true to overplayed wedding reception music—"Hey Ya!"
As the Top Six performed last night, the combination of this routine and Valerie's earlier Broadway routine with frontrunner Ricky (which highlighted how much both of them should pursue Broadway after the show and not Step Up 8: Don't Step 2 L8) really brought home the fact that Valerie even made it this far into the competition. And after last night's episode, she's in the Top Four. The finale is in two weeks. So, what if Valerie wins the competition?
Guest judge Christina Applegate said it best when she commented on how, at this point in the competition, "What can we really say at this point?" We know all of these dancers are very good, and Nigel doesn't have to beat that into our heads. But Valerie, outside of her tap comfort zone, isn't the best overall dancer on the show by a long shot; so the fact that she has made it this far is kind of astounding. Sure, she's had some memorable routines. Tanisha had the benefit of being memorable and also amazing. But she's gone now.
Ricky is the obvious choice because he's the best dancer, Jessica is a contender because she's who the judges want to win, and Zack is also still on the show. But Valerie has also been consistently safe from elimination and putting out these solid performances. Is it possible her quirkiness has won America's hearts? Is Cat going to call her "adorkable," thus sealing her fate?
"Who's that girl? It's Val!"