Hyphen magazine - Asian American arts, culture, and politics


Hyphen TV: Ropes Again

Jessica really, really likes fringe.

Let's meet the rest of our new pals on America's Best Dance Crew ... this week we met Mos Wanted from Los Angeles. These guys give back to their community by teaching local kids how to dance. Aww. Their style is what they call MOS: movement over sound. Their choreography reflects the lyrics of the songs they dance to, not the music. They danced to Flo Rida's "In the Ayer," and the judges approved. "That routine is the definition of great dancing," praised D-Trix. "You don't need big tricks ... you're trained in the foundations of dance." He also called their moves "alien" and "futuristic." Lil' Mama complimented they way Mos Wanted has "so much control over [their] energy that it's scary ... When it's finished, [they're] not even breathing heavy." JC liked the way they didn't dance to the "obvious rhythms," and he said it was clear which song they were dancing to because of that MOS style. They were very much safe.

It kinda looks like they're on fire ... and they kinda are.

Not so safe was last week's bottom crew, Mix'd Elements, who had to battle it out with this week's bottom crew Funkdation. Though the Mix'd boys had an extra week between results and battling, they were the first crew to leave the season. Vinh, Joe, Hitcliff, Frank, Andrew, and Matt, we're glad we got to know you, albeit for a brief time. hope to see you guys around again soon!

There was a bit of outrage from Jimmy this week on American Idol following Jessica's near-elimination last week. "Jessica doesn't deserve to be in the bottom three if she sang Yankee Doodle Dandy," he said incredulously.  In coaching her this week, he was adamant that Jessica not change anything vocally, but he encouraged her to search for the spiritual and have fun with the song. She sang "Fallin'" for her first performance while surrounded by red umbrellas(?), and as usual, the judges loved her. Steven noticed that Jessica seemed angry with the song by the end, adding, "You have a right to get mad at a song." Randy called Jessica's talent "otherworldly" and said (not for the first time) that he doesn't think Jessica knows how good she is. Ryan asked Jess what was going through her mind when the judges rushed the stage during her stage song. She said, "I thought you guys didn't want me to sing!" Aww. For real though, if J.Lo ran up to me and wrenched a mic out of my hands, I'd be pretty freaked out too.

Jessica's also into the big statement jewelry ... or does it just look big on her tiny frame?

Jessica's second song was "Try a Little Tenderness," and there was a rough edge to her voice that I enjoyed. Steven liked the fact that Jess was stepping out from her usual performances while Jennifer said that a little bit of alter ego BebeChez was coming out. She went on to say that Jessica needs to really start pushing to connect with the audience because vocal talent alone is not going to win the competition. "When it comes to voice, you win," she stated flat-out. During the results show, Jimmy apologied for not realizing earlier that Jessica's been singing songs that are too old for her (uh, duh??). Since she was safe this week, we'll have a chance to see the new, young Jessica soon...

On Top Shot, the contestants had to rappel down a wall. Chee had done rappelling in basic training, but when he got into position at the top of the wall he realized, "This is a great time to learn you're afraid of heights" (uh oh) and then had a little trouble making his way down: "I suck at ropes!" he said, and remembering that one rope swing challenge, I'm not going to fight him on it. Chris came in first place and Chee landed at the very bottom -- his first time in the bottom all season, let alone last place. As he's said before, Chee was ready and willing to head to elimination, and when he did he was faced with a SWAT team-style challenge where he had to shoot through three locked doors and then hit the targets on the other side. Chee had a strong start, but then he lost a ton of time when he didn't get the third door open on his first try. In the end he lost by 18 seconds, but he wasn't disheartened. He's going to look for a university with a shooting team (yeah!), and he's hopefully also going to call his ladyfriend, eliminated contestant Gaby.

We haven't checked in on Survivor in a while because Christina's hardly been getting any screen time. But don't worry, there was more bullying to be had again this week. It was the annual Survivor auction, where each contestant received $500 in cash and got the opportunity to bid on various things: food, a shower, hints for idols, help toward challenges, and the like. Odd man out Troyzan went in planning to bid only on items that would help him in the competition, so when a challenge advantage came up, he bid right away. Christina escalated the bid, going back and forth with Troyzan until she stopped with no explanation, giving it up to him. Her teammates were quick to berate her for not going further, and I admit I agreed that it seemed to be a wasted opportunity (particularly since she didn't get anything at all except a shared cake that another tribe member won). Of course, one could also point out that Troyzan would have gladly jumped right up to his $500 maximum, but it's a bit curious that Christina didn't try.

No one looks happy with the way the auction's going.

Later, Troyzan attempted to win Christina over to his side, describing how she could help him vote out unofficial tribe leader Kim to break up the strong alliance that was dominating. He repeated this plan at tribal council, pointing out in front of everyone that Christina is at the bottom of the totem pole. Though I wouldn't disagree with his logic, Christina must have been embarrassed top get called out like that (though we'll never know because we never hear from her) and in the end she voted with Kim's group and not with Troyzan. It'll be interesting to see, if Troyzan continues to hang on, whether Christina ever comes around and leaves the group that barely tolerates her.

Guys, are you watching America Revealed with Yul Kwon yet? Because you're missing out on some pretty great stuff if you aren't. This week the name of the game was transportation, and Yul went everywhere from rush hour Manhattan to remote Alaska to explain how and why Americans get around the way they do. If you're at all like me and love learning trivia, you'll love seeing how he explores the world's largest transportation network (hint: it involves cute kids excitedly cheering for their driver) and why Los Angeles traffic is SO bad ALL the time (that's a little too complicated to hint at here). What are you waiting for? Watch right here.

Yul keeps himself warm with an Alaskan smile.

Big Bang Theory's Kunal Nayyar was back on Conan, chatting about the Indian wedding he had since his last appearance and discussing married life. He has two TVs in his bedroom so that he and his wife can both watch TV in bed? The man is a genius.

Conan demonstrates how Kunal watches TV in bed (his wife gets the TV that's not on the side).

About The Author

Dianne Choie

Dianne Choie's TV is in Brooklyn, NY. She has a cat, several reusable shopping bags, and other mildly annoying stereotypes of youngish people who live in Brooklyn.

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