Saturday, May 23, 2009

Five Reasons

Why So You Think You Can Dance is a better show than American Idol

1) Quality of Contestants: I remain convinced that there are more better dancers out there than there are singers. SYTYCD and it's sister show, SYTYCD Canada, have demonstrated simply astonishing depth.

Which leads neatly into #2...

2) We get to see that depth. I get irritated by American Idol's tendency to show nothing but hideous auditions and to skim over tiny snippets of the good ones. While we're certainly not spared the awful on SYTYCD, it always feels to me like more time is spent showing really wonderful auditions.

3) Variety. I don't believe that American Idol is particularly interested in diversity of style, despite "theme" weeks. After all, contestants are asked to take specific kinds of music and "make them their own." On the other hand, SYTYCD requires that successful competitors be strong in a variety of kinds of dance from hip-hop to ballroom to contemporary to Bollywood. This makes for more interestingly diverse television, greater growth for the contestants, and a strong sense that the competition is immensely difficult. The addition of new styles each season shows that SYTYCD producers are invested in the show growing alongside dance culture.

4) Judges. The American Idol judges reached a new level of both annoying and useless this season. Fourth judge Kara added absolutely nothing to the show except a ridiculous tendency to cause the show to run long. Feedback was often contradictory, obtuse, confusing and manipulative. While the SYTYCD judges certainly do not lack personality quirks, they are consistently more accurate, more detailed, more profound and more constructive. The addition of a new guest judge from a different dance background each week reflects the show's emphasis on diversity. And yes, Mary is weird and possibly drunk and she dresses funny. But she knows her stuff and it shows.

5) And finally... Cat Deeley. Genuine, funny, loving, exciting, both gorgeous and adorable, slightly geeky, gentle, involved and never, ever condescending. Best. Host. Ever.

Bonus Reason: Group numbers that are actually good.


Mandy said...

hmmm, interesting .. maybe I should check it out now that I need soemthing to watch:)

ccw said...

I have loved this show since I stumbled upon it season 3. It really is a good show with good dancers and variety.