Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Strictly Dance Moms

Okay so before I get into the specifics of this particular episode of Dance Moms, let me give you some background, in case anyone who doesn't watch wants to follow along. The main group featured on the show is a competitive squad from Abby Lee's school. The group is 6 girls (seven?) ranging from ages 7-14. They are extremely talented. Occasionally the viewer is treated to another group--the Candy Apples based out of Ohio (vs Abby in Pittsburgh). I can't figure out the ages of the girls in the Candy Apples group because I'm always too distracted by 5 year old Vivi-Ann, the dance instructor's daughter, who gets highlighted in each group dance, despite having no discernible skill. Despite Vivi's inclusion, and a young (presumably homosexual) young ginger boy, this group is...not good. Both Abby and Kathy, the owners of both dance studios are crazy, obnoxious, and delusional. Both are also very self-assured and egotistical. Also, they hate each other. All that drama combined with a group of dance moms who are catty, mean, and seemingly lacking common sense or moral standards and you've got a pretty dang good show.

You're going to wish I was kidding about this, but I most definitely am not. Last night when I sat down to watch the show, I was so enthralled by the first ten minutes, I had to pause it and go get paper and a pen to take notes on all the hilarity. Here are a list of the highlights from the episode:

We got a sneak peek into the home life of Kathy (Candy Apples owner). I was shocked to find her married, but less so once the husband started talking. He was discussing his new business venture, the beef jerky store he opened called "Tommy's Jerky Outlet". Boy if he isn't an entrepreneur, I don't know who is. Mark Zuckerberg has nothing on this guy.

During this jerky store discussion during breakfast, the camera man zooms in on Vivi, bored by her parents, eating cereal. Clearly 5 is not the age a child has developed good motor skills, because half of Vivi's cereal dribbles down her face as she tries to eat a spoonful. If someone could get me a screen grab of her with that dumb look on her face while as her spoon nearly misses her mouth, I would be eternally grateful.

Next, we see Abby working with her girls, discussing the group number they'll be competing with over the weekend. She comes up with the idea to have them dress up as showgirls, so they look nude, and dance with strategically placed oversized feather fans. From what I could tell, she was basically taking the "Sisters" dance from White Christmas, and having little girls dress like sluts to go along with it. The mothers all acted horrified at the idea of their ten year olds dancing on stage in bedazzled nude bras, but none of them actually objected to the idea or refused to allow their daughter to participate. Eh, what's the big deal, anyways? It's just a pedophile's dream. As rehearsals began, Abby insisted the girls learn this number perfectly because, according to her, "one day one of them is going to be a showgirl". She didn't say it in an insulting way, so I think she meant it as a compliment, which I find to be quite troublesome. Aren't showgirls just strippers that went to dance classes? They don't even earn tips!

Back to Kathy and her husband, who have decided she's going to direct a commercial for his jerky store, and feature some of her dancers. Mostly Vivi, who we've already learned does NOT have a good camera presence. When her husband tries to give input for HIS commercial, she tells him all he needs to do is "kick back with a couple of sausages around your neck". Oy. SAUSAGE AND JERKY AREN'T THE SAME THING.

Okay lets talk about this commercial. I'm not even going to address the fact that Kathy had a 12 year old girl wear a flesh colored body suit with beef jerky stapled to it. I really can't understand the motivation for a grown woman to degrade and mock a little girl. Does she think that's going to bring in business to her dance studio?? Sure, I mock Vivi, but it's out of love and the true enjoyment I get from watching her look confused and clueless.
Anyways, this commercial was easily the dumbest thing I've ever seen. Not even in a good way. I'm genuinely embarrassed for the Candy Apples and Kathy's husband. Even poor Vivi has figured out she got adopted by a couple of the biggest clowns on the planet, and she seems shocked that they are trying to pass themselves off as parents. I doubt the commercial actually ran, I'm sure they just put it on the show to be funny and get attention, but the jokes on them, because I have a feeling Tommy's Jerky Outlet has already closed for business.

Later in the show, once Abby's girls have performed their nearly naked number (which did not go over well with the judges), the dance moms have decided to throw an engagement party for one of the other Moms who HASN'T EVEN ADMITTED SHE'S ENGAGED. Naturally, the moms decided that (just like any engagement party) there needs to be a stripper. You might be asking yourself: where would these moms hold such a party for a woman who is secretive and private? Easy answer: IN THE DRESSING ROOM AT THEIR DAUGHTERS DANCE COMPETITION. Good grief. I have so many issues with the whole thing, I can't even tell you. The stripper even comes into the dressing room when the girls are in there and is like "I'm here to fix the heat". One mom starts to scoot the girls out the room, but they're understandably suspicious, and the 14 year old has clearly figured out that dude is about to get naked in front of her (married) mom, who is nearly foaming at the mouth. The engaged mom gets upset and offended, because she's normal, and storms off. Another mom is irritated by how the whole thing played out and says, "Melissa has no problem letting our daughters dress up like showgirls, but when we bring in a stripper, she acts like she's above it all.". Again, I get that this was done for the show. I don't think these women would have hired a stripper for their friend, knowing she'd get upset if the cameras couldn't be there, but the fact that their daughters were there and will put it all together (if they didn't already) when they see the show is so appalling to me. And any woman that would let their young daughter within breathing distance of a stripper should probably have CPS called on them.

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