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SYTYCD Rankdown 3.0

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super heartbreaking side note 💔 I’m in shock. 😢 

"It's a rankdown, I get it. Like, I respect it. But at the same time, like, even if everybody's favorite gets cut, like, yeah, people are gonna be petty, which is terrible but, like, inevitable?" - Va

Melanie Moore and overstaying her welcome?

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Mariah Russell (Season 16)





Mariah Russell sucks. Really. Mariah is easily one of the worst contestants in SYTYCD history. Let's get into why during this write-up.


Mariah Russell is the runner-up from the most recent season of the show. Season 16 is a f*cking trainwreck. There is hardly anything positive to say about the season, which really spiraled into such disastrous territory. The judges/producers deciding to support Mariah so heavily during the season is just one of the many atrocities performed last summer. And while Mariah is not solely to blame for the worst season in the show's fifteen year history, there is no denying her hugely negative impact on the show quality. 


A Contemporary dancer from Nashville, Tennessee, Mariah auditioned for the show with full sob story in tow. With a father in prison that she has not seen since she was six years old, Mariah clearly provided Nigel + co. every reason to be cast as the Season 16 frontrunner. Good for her. All I saw was a woman that surely was no older than 12 years of age auditioning for a competition intended for adults? IDK. Supposedly she was 18 at the time, but IDK. I have never seen a contestant appear so juvenile before. I instantly knew that she was simply not ready for this competition just based on her physique alone. How could Mariah believably take on any mature role? This is SYTYCD. Not Dance Moms. I really feel like Mariah found herself auditioning for the wrong show. 


Mariah obviously soared through Academy Week. IDK. I cannot tell you anything about what happened during Academy Week because all I remember of Season 16 is Nazz Sldryan dancing "Overseas" and winning the competition. She made the Top 20, which is not much of an accomplishment, considering the dearth of talent in that group. I mean...it was essentially a group of toddlers + Nazz/Sumi. How can you taken any of them seriously when literally none of them had even reached puberty? LOL. For her final act of the sixteen year long audition process, Mariah partnered with Jonathan Platero for a Salsa routine choreographed by Oksana Platero.


What is there to say about this routine? The Salsa is sexless, passionless, devoid of energy, stiff as hell, unmemorable, not very good, etc. But of course Mariah was overpraised and given ten million gold stars for doing...something. IDK. But then again, how do you critique a child? LOL. Mariah is an adult woman, but yeah. If somebody told me that she was twelve years old, I would believe them. And that lack of life + professional experience was written all over her face and body for the entirety of the competition. This immaturity is really obvious when her attempt at being "sexy" is giving Duck Lips for two minutes straight. LOL. Mariah was just very uncomfortable to watch, as choreographers spent the entire season asking her to dance choreography and perform material way out of her scope. This only becomes more complicated when the judges/producers try to spin some romance angle as if any of us really believe Mariah is romantically involved with her partner. 


Do we have "STUPID" stamped on our foreheads? We would literally watch Mariah struggle for two minutes to even give an ounce of authentic chemistry or passion, and then the judges would be like "OMG WOWZ THAT WAS SO HOT YOU MUST LOVE BAILEY AND WANT TO DATE HIM RIGHT?!?!"

Meanwhile Mariah is like still figuring out what shoes she wants to wear to her high school graduation. LOL. 


 But that did not stop anybody from pretending like the 3'9" high school student could actually succeed at convincing any of us that she was grown and experienced enough for this show. It's a dancing and performing competition, Nigel. Not a magic show where miracles are performed.


So of course on the first week, Mariah dances what is supposed to be like some sexy, groovy Jazz piece with Bailey to "Love Shack" by B-52s. Has Mariah even heard of the B-52s before?!?! Mandy Moore choreographed a shitty routine that two small children could never successfully pull off or give any depth to, so naturally the judges give Mariah a standing ovation and deem her The It Girl of the season. YIKES. The routine is actually really horrible and one of the worst routines I have seen across the entire series.


Things reach peak horror on the second week, however. Mariah dances what is supposed to be a very overtly sexual Luther Brown choreographed Hip-Hop routine to "Tempo" by Lizzo ft. Missy Elliott. The song is an anthem made by plus-sized women to celebrate THICK/FAT BODIES. The song objectively talks about how skinny women should not dance to that song. I agree. Actual high school children should also be included on Lizzo's list of people not allowed to dance to "Tempo." Mariah gives her...best attempt. The judges and IDF collectively acted as if Mariah threw down the gauntlet and created a masterpiece. When in reality, her performance in that routine highlighted just how out of her league she was on the show. 


But Mariah is not to blame and she is not the only person that did not belong in the competition yet. The entire Season 16 cast (sans Bailey - and even he was questionable most of the time) did not belong. LOL. Nigel + co. are to blame for the casting and overdone/undeserved praise. And for pushing this romantic narrative between Bailey and Mariah. UGH.


Mariah continued suck in the competition the following week, dancing the worst Latin Ballroom routine in SYTYCD history. That Cha Cha with Bailey is nightmare-inducing. The less said about Dmitry attempting to have Mariah accomplish that Cha Cha, the better. Mariah is actively destroying chemistry. Anti-passion. LOL. At least Mariah was able to dance "Slide" with Bailey  later that night, which is an okay routine. Most of the time is spent wishing somebody without having to worry about passing their government-economics finals is dancing the routine instead, but there is some interesting choreography there. But her solo sucked and her performance in the group routine where she is supposed to be a...burglar, rebel, bad guy? IDK. It's also very bad. 




Top Six. Mariah is on top of the competition. Mariah is still serving Duck Lips. Mariah is still really bad. The Season 16 cast is still way too young and inexperienced. Nigel is still forcing fake romances on the contestants. The show really should have been cancelled after this mess. Anyways. She danced a really horrible Hip-Hop routine with FikShun, who completely steals all of the attention away from her and highlights how poorly she dances out of her style. Then she danced that horrible Ray Leeper Jazz routine to "Need You Tonight" by INXS. Again. Has Mariah even heard this song? Is she even comprehending the level of sexual energy she would need to channel to do this song justice? The answer is no. She instead dances around clade in leather and giving...


Duck Lips. LOL. Yet she is praised by the judges for creating sex. Mariah is Eve in The Garden. LOL. Another bad solo. Another bad performance in the group routine. Yawn. She made the finals obviously. By this point, I cannot stand to even watch Mariah try anymore. Try to dance well. Try to convince us she is not a kid. Try to convince us we aren't watching the Kids Season 2.0. Try to be sexy. LOL.


Mariah is given another sexy Jazz piece with Bailey, which is choreographed by Jonathan Redavid. WHO TF IS THAT. The routine is a disaster. For reasons you already know. Mariah then dances a 1920s-esque Quickstep with Gino. REALLY HORRIBLE. Because she has no charm. Neither does Gino. Though she earns her seventeenth standing ovation. Because of course she does. At least she is able to dance her best routine of the season on finale night - her Mandy Moore Contemporary piece with Robert Roldan. But the video package is so shady. Mandy is more excited to be working with Robert again than she is to choreograph for Mariah. Robert blatantly admits that Mariah needs to be vulnerable and give emotion because she has not done that all season. LOL.The routine is good, but Robert most definitely looks far too mature to be dancing with her. At least she had her moment when she did because...


Mariah closed the show with the worst routine in SYTYCD history. That Luther Brown Hip-Hop with the other problem child of Season 16, Sophie. I don't know what to say. The routine actually fells like a joke. Luther did not even care when choreographing this routine. I think he already knew what the end product would look like, so why even put forth the effort? WHY DID THEY GIVE THE TWO WORST WOMEN FINALISTS IN SYTYCD HISTORY A LUTHER BROWN HIP HOP ROUTINE? WHY DID THEY WAIT SO LONG TO DO THIS? The two teenage girls were  dressed obnoxiously in horrible neon fishnets and were asked to attempt to twerk for two minutes...


Mariah. With no meat on her bones. Twerk. Mariah. Sweet privileged competition dancer. To serve attitude and ratchet. Yeah. No. This routine is the perfect way to end the worst season ever though. LOL. Mariah earned herself second place, but this does not really feel earned. LOL. There was no competition. There was no quality work being delivered. All of the children were treated with kid gloves. Mariah floundered her way into second place, while sticking out like a sore thumb the whole way through. Watching her all season felt uncomfortable and frustrating. But at least she will always hold the title of worst Hip-Hop and Latin Ballroom routine in SYTYCD history! Small victories. Mariah just recently finished the SYTYCD tour and just booked a job with Luther Brown performing for Gwen Stefani. Which...good for her. But that is questionable casting from Luther.


I think in like..six or seven years she will reach her full potential and will be great. But for now, she is just a glaring sign that the show is running its course.


SAVING: Jacque LeWarne

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Gino Cosculluela



Okay soo this was more of a strategic cut than a personal one and I’ll explain. I do think I like Gino more than Eliana but with Deee (happily) cutting Mariah, I’d rather Bailey win for Season 16, as he did in real life and this is really the only chance to make that happen soooo I’m gonna make that happen. :ph34r: So let’s discuss Gino.


Gino Cosculluela is a Contemporary dancer from Miami, FL and he was on Season 16. Wow the Season wiki page is HORRID and hard to read…. makes me regret this cut. Anywho, Gino was originally partnered with Stephanie where they dance a Hip-Hop and a Jive. I didn’t really care for him in the Hip-Hop but he impressed me in that Jive. 😮 Ugh Stephanie got eliminated and that was such a bummer as I was growing to really like that partnership. :( Gino was then partnered with Sophie and they would become quite a ~power couple~ together. They danced a Contemporary and a Jazz on Top 8 week. Then Top 6 week, Gino danced a Hip-Hop to “Get Up” with Comfort and a Broadway with Sophie. Come finale time, Gino danced another Jazz with Sophie and wow they were barely challenged as a couple 😐 Even though Gino was challenged outside of his partnership with Sophie, so that’s good. Then he danced a Quickstep with Mariah, a Contemporary with Melanie and Broadway with Bailey.


Gino ended up placing 3rd besting his partner Sophie but landing behind the It couple and my favorites Bailey and Mariah of that season so I am one of those that had no complaints with his ranking in votes. Oh and whoa, I just learned he was a dancer on Dance Moms just now from research, when he was much younger. My mind is kinda blown.


I really liked a number of these dances from Gino, and I will post some below. 









Saving: Lindsay Arnold




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Carly Blaney

Carly was a contemporary dancer in the show’s eleventh season. She was unceremoniously eliminated at the Top 14 in a double elimination with her partner Serge, along with Teddy and Emily. The double elimination definitely marked a bit of a turning point for that season since most people felt that at least one of the eliminations was unjust. Personally, I was a fan of all four to varying degrees, so I definitely felt slighted by the judges decisions that night.


In the showcase, she danced a Stacey Tookey contemporary routine with Rudy Abreu. Rudy was my favourite male going in to the season and I usually like Stacey's choreography, so this was definitely one of my favourite routines of the night.

in Week 2, she and Serge danced a Contemporary routine to “Latch” that was, again, one of the standouts of the night. As I said in Serge's write-up, I felt a little like she did most of the dancing and he just stood there but it was still good. In Week 2, they danced a Luther Brown hip-hop to “Senile”. Again, I felt like Carly got more down and dirty with it but I liked it from both of them.

In Week 3 they danced another contemporary to Jewel’s “Foolish Games”. Of all of Carly's routines, this was the most forgettable for me. I think because Latch received more praise whereas this was a Mandy Moore routine and led to both of them getting eliminated. The night they got eliminated, they danced a Quickstep and even though it was Serge’s style, I felt like Carly held her own, which is why I was much more upset about her going home.

I felt like in the five routines we saw from her, she showed versatility and I would have liked to see her dance with the all stars. But anyway, I'm cutting her because I like Eliana more and think she deserves to last longer as the rightful winner of Season 9 😘 


i said what i said nene leakes GIF



Save: Eliana Girard

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I thought about being petty and delaying the next round, but since Andrew is nominating next, I'll just await my revenge. 🙂 Anyway, Jordan Casanova is one of my favourite dancers from a Godawful season of the show. I hate cutting her this early since there's so many dancers I would prefer leaving before him MOST OF WHOM WERE SAVED THIS ROUND #CHOICES, but I also know she's an active target of Dee's and I'd rather her write-up come from someone who likes her. 😘 She perhaps wasn't the most versatile (but, again, season 8...), but I liked her personality, and I thought she had a great presence on stage. She was partnered with Tadd Gadduang, and since she liked to pretend to be sexy and Tadd liked to take his clothes off, this seemed like a pair destined to push the limits of what the FCC allowed Fox to air.


I don't remember her showcase routine, so moving on. With Tadd, the two of them started off their run together with a Sean Cheeseman African Jazz. People considered it one of the stronger routines of the evening, but as it was the opening routine, I think it got lost in the shuffle, which meant they landed in the bottom three afterward. (If you want to shade me saying it was one of the stronger routines that night, be my guest, but just remember that both R&R and A&C's routines were safe 😘.) They were both saved when the judges notably decided not to eliminate Miranda and Robert anyone this week, thereby f*cking up the season completely from the second week on. A new record that would only be beaten when they freaked up S16 before the competition had even started by eliminating Nazz & Sumi over Mariah & Sophie. But I digress.


For the second week, Jordan and Tadd danced a Viennese Waltz to Fade Into Me by David Cook, so naturally I loved it. :wub:  I thought their chemistry had really come together in that week, and it was a solid effort from two dancers that probably had very little, if any, ballroom experience. For their third week, Jordan & Tadd took on a NappyTabs "hip-hop," to Memories by David Guetta. The routine was about the morning after a one-night stand, and since it notably featured Tadd in his boxers for half of the routine, it goes without saying that it was one of the highlights of that week. Actually, looking at the list of routines that night, it truly goes without saying because that was a rough show outside of them, Class and reluctant Ryan & Ricky even if they should've been eliminated in the double elimination.



So Top 14 week rolled around, and since that was the week every couple danced a style they just had two weeks ago except for Ashley & Chris #RIGGAMORRIS, Jordan & Tadd were given another waltz. Their Smooth Waltz was to Nocturne, and while it was a decent routine, it was kind of forgettable overall and I thought their first one was better. Nonetheless, they landed in the bottom three again alongside Ryan & Ricky and Ashley & Chris. Jordan really didn't have to sweat considering her run was better than Ryan's, and it was obvious that the judges were going to eliminate Ashley & Chris because of the #RIGGAMORRIS that had happened.


Top 12 week rolled around, and the S8 cast was given two routines that night. While it's nice to see more routines get introduced, this was also a nightmare for this season considering the couples that were left. Class and Jordan/Tadd were the only couples left to handle two distinctly different styles, so at least there's that. (And don't @ me, Sasha stans, that shade was intended purely on Alexander who couldn't dance his way out of a paper bag). Jordan & Tadd's second round consisted of them doing a Broadway. It wasn't really that great (but again, S8 standards here...), but it was campy and fun at the very least, and still better than the sh*t that Caitlynn/Mitchell, Ryan/Ricky and Sasha/Alexander turned in. Their first routine of the night, however, was the highlight of both of their runs - a dark, brooding Travis Wall contemporary to Brotsjór that again required Tadd to wear minimal clothing:


Naturally, they sailed through to the top ten after this. I remember there was some ~shock~ when they were safe over Alexander & Sasha, but I felt that writing was on the wall since the judges had been wanting to get rid of Alexander for weeks. Why they partnered him with Sasha, knowing she was popular, who knows. But again, the partnership assignments in S8 were kind of a hot mess. Just look at Melanie & Marko being paired together even though neither of them could dance outside of contempt-jazz (and even jazz was pushing it for Melanie 👼). But I'm again getting off track.


In the top ten, Jordan had another highlight as she danced with Br*nd*n Bry*nt, season five's undeserving runner-up, to a Jessie J routine. Since America's voting taste that season was basic and tragic, Jordan found herself in the bottom four alongside Clarice. The judges randomly decided to still decide the eliminations, and they chose to save Jordan even though Clarice was by far the strongest girl of season eight. In the interviews afterward, Nigel commented that Jordan did, indeed, receive the fewest vote totals of the women, so again... #riggamorris. But also not really since Jordan was my second favourite girl in that top ten, rofl.


Top 8 week saw Jordan take on a jazz to Nutbush City Limits with another season five dancer, Ade Obayomi. This routine was pretty forgettable in the grand scheme of things (and if we're talking about jazzes with Ade as an all-star, we all know Boneless >>>>>> everything else.) The contestants were also partnered up this week, and this saw Jordan & Jess take on a Rumba to Ad*le's Set Fire to the Rain. This was back when Ad*le wasn't ruining everything good, and this was one of my favourite routines of the season. Naturally, they both went home after this. Disgusting.


As part of the Top 10 + Nick/Missy, Jordan was on the S8 tour. Andrew and I got to meet her at the Toronto show, and she was just as lovely as her video packages let on. :wub:  Amusingly enough, while everyone else just came out in sweatpants and T-shirts, Jordan had decided to shower, do her hair and put on a nice dress to meet her fans. A true legend. :dead: I've followed Jordan on Instagram and Twitter since the season's ended, and she's still active in the dance scene. While she isn't one of my all-time favourites given the amount of seasons this franchise has turned in though we could just pretend S16 never happened tbh, I'm still a fan and am glad she's made a career for herself. She's also good friends with Ashley Galvan, too.


SAVE: Cole Mills

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3 hours ago, Elliott said:

I'll do my cut/save later today when I'm done being petty over the cuts and saves for this round. 🙂

You cut Chelsie and Danny wayyy before their time. Boy you've been petty all along. 😛 

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6 minutes ago, .Rei said:


lol at you using a Lindsay of gif from

Dwts because she had no good routines on sytycd :haha:


Boy hush your mouth. 🙂 


I saw an Unstoppable Paso gif, but Cole was shown more in that gif rather than Lindsay so I went with the iconic Salsa. :wub: 

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47 minutes ago, .Rei said:

lol at you using a Lindsay of gif from DWTS because she had no good routines on sytycd :haha:

I came to the realization today that the only good thing I can say about Jensen’s run on SYTYCD was that it somehow made Lindsay’s run look good.

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