Last night’s Dance Moms saw another Payton/Leslie invasion, the moms standing up for one another and Abby sneaking Maddie into a second competition without telling the troupe. Geez!
Abby gets on the troupe for getting second place overall. While any other dance teacher would be thrilled, Abby reminds her girls that she is not any other dance teacher. Paige is on the bottom of the pyramid along with Brooke, who is still on probation. She blames the girls for not coming to them on their own to beg for their solos after mom Kelly pulled them from the competition. Is she serious? Nia is also on the bottom, although I’m not sure why. Chloe and Maddie are in the middle of the pyramid with MacKenzie taking the coveted top spot. Melissa is super proud. The competition this week will be held in Virginia, and it’s touted as the largest dance competition in the country.
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Maddie will have a solo, as will Chloe. Brooke stupidly raises her hand to ask if she’ll be able to attend her first formal school dance this weekend. Abby allows her to bow out of the competition so as not to have a bratty teenager on her hands. She is excited about replacing Brooke. Christi, Melissa, and Holly all have Kelly’s back when Abby brings in Payton to replace Brooke. There is no reason to have another dancer. Abby explains that the group number is inspired by “that movie, um The Hunger Games. It’s about kids killing kids.” You know, survival of the fittest, right? Payton’s age will push them up in the competition, and all the moms are concerned that Paton is a bully.
Christi accompanies Kelly as she shops for Brooke’s formal dress for her eighth grade farewell dance. When Brooke finds “the one.” Kelly is in tears that she’ll be at the competition and unable to see off her daughter on her big night.
Payton’s mom Leslie is ready to take on the dance moms. She’s also worried to tell Abby that Payton has broken her finger. Abby expresses concern that it will be uncomfortable for the other girls to have Payton lift them with a metal splint. No worries…if it’s a problem, Leslie will simply remove the splint. In the viewing room, she’s every bit the antagonist with the original moms. Christi gets fed up and blurts out that Payton has been bullying Maddie. Leslie wants to know why Maddie’s mom Melissa didn’t share that information herself. It looks like Payton may have learned how to bully from mommy dearest. Christi and Leslie have words, and I wonder why the girls can be so much more mature than their mothers.
Melissa is worried about the amount of pressure Abby is putting on young MacKenzie for the group dance. Maddie is doing a lyrical solo loosely inspired by Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. Abby has Maddie up against much older and more advanced dancers. Chloe’s solo is “What Goes Around Comes Around.” Abby hopes that it will teach Chloe that karma is a b!tch, and so is her mom Christi. Christi is worried that there isn’t much choreography to Chloe’s dance, and she’s seen the difficulty in Maddie’s dance.
Abby has Melissa and Maddie come in for an extra rehearsal, and Melissa is surprised to learn that none of the other dancers are in attendance. Abby reveals that there is another division to the competition at a nearby high school, and she learns that she can enter one of her dancers as long as she doesn’t perform the same solo as in her original division. Abby wants to Maddie to perfect an older solo so she can compete in both, and she wants Melissa to keep her mouth shut so the other mothers don’t cry ‘favoritism.’
Christi thinks the choreography for the group dance is very complex, which means it could either be amazing or sloppy. Abby calls out Nia for being lazy, and she refuses to treat MacKenzie like the baby everyone else sees her as. As for Payton, the pressure is on–she really wants to make this troupe, but her finger is really bothering her. Leslie tells her to suck it up and wrap her finger better next time. At the competition, Abby tells Payton she must dance without the splint. Sure she’ll be in extreme pain for two minutes and thirty seconds, and maybe her finger will look wonky the rest of her life due to permanent damage, but doesn’t she want to be a part of the group? Leslie gives her daughter one last “suck it up” before Payton removes the splint.
Kelly receives a picture text of Brooke before the dance. All of the moms and dancers crowd around her phone to oooh and awww over Brooke. Kelly is very glad that Brooke made the decision to forgo the competition so she could spend this time with her school friends. Abby pulls Payton aside and warns her to not to get too cocky with the girls. She believes Payton can be a great leader, but she needs to check her ego at the door. Abby is beyond frustrated watching the group rehearse, as she thinks they are too sloppy. Payton wants to dance through her immense finger pain to show Abby she can be a good leader. MacKenzie wants to prove that she can keep up with the big girls.
The group number goes well, but not as well as it could. Leslie can tell that Payton is cringing due to the pain. She missed a few turns as well. MacKenzie also trips a little at one point. First and second place are separated by one-tenth of a point, and Abby’s girls place second. Yikes. Abby looks right at Payton and asks, “How do you think you did?” Payton is humble and not cocky, so she gains some points in Abby’s book.
Chloe is on the verge of tears before heading on stage…she has a big case of the nerves and is worried she is going to forget her choreography. Maddie consoles her. Chloe nails her routine, but I have to agree with her mom…the choreography leaves a bit to be desired. Abby thinks she was too rigid, but she’s happy that at least she remembered it. Maddie’s solo is flawless. At the awards ceremony, Chloe gets second runner up while Maddie takes the top prize–Junior Miss Star Power. Christi is proud of her daughter, but she’s upset that Chloe’s choreography didn’t hold a candle to Maddie’s.
Abby breaks the news to the other mothers that Maddie is going to the other competition. Kelly, for one, isn’t buying that this was a last minute decision. Why would Maddie have brought a costume? Abby certainly didn’t ask Nia or Chloe to bring another costume in the event that they may be enlisted to perform. I know these moms are ridiculous, but I do love that they have each other’s back so much more than last season. They are allies, not competitors. Kelly feels bad that neither Christi nor Holly’s daughters were given the opportunity to dance in the extra division. Leslie thinks that Christi’s anger at Chloe’s choreography is unfounded.
After Melissa and Abby race to get Maddie to the nearby high school, she is very nervous about her second solo. Not surprisingly, she nails it. Girl’s got major talent. She manages to sweep the Junior Miss Star Power competition at two separate venues. Kelly tries to tell Leslie that the constant favoritism weighs on all the moms and the dancers. Christi chimes in that Leslie wouldn’t know much about it given that Payton only gets to dance with the elite on special occasions.
Next week, Abby takes us on a tour of past dances in a highlight episode.
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE? WHILE MADDIE CLEARLY HAS THE TALENT TO PULL OFF COMPETING IN MULTIPLE COMPETITIONS, DID ABBY GO ABOUT IT THE WRONG WAY? IS HER FAVORITISM UNFAIR?
[Photo Credit: Lifetime.com]