The executive producer of Dance Moms, Jeff Collins, is back to host the crazy tell-all that is the Dance Moms Season 3 reunion. Bless him. He thinks he can wrangle in Abby Lee Miller and the drama fueled moms who trust Abby to teach their daughters. He looks heavily medicated…as he should be for the task. It's part one of two-part reunion, y'all!
A hoarse Abby is first to join Jeff on stage. Does she ever have a voice? Jeff brings up some of her more memorable altercations this season…like when she was yelled at by a Candy Apple dance dad and got into it with Kathy. Abby is quick to remind Jeff that she was "verbally assaulted" by said dance dad and "physically assaulted" by Kathy. Semantics? Eh, it's a tough call. He wants to do word association, and Abby is quick to call Kelly "foolish" and Christi "evil." Melissa is "sly like a fox" while Kathy's purse (the one from the aforementioned assault) is "heavy, sharp, hurtful" among other things. In the green room, the moms play their own game.
When questioned about Melissa's new loyalty to the mothers this season, Abby cites disappointment in Melissa putting her need to be accepted above her daughters' success. Melissa joins Abby on stage to talk about her wedding. She admits that she wanted the ceremony filmed for the show, but she respected her husband's wishes to keep their day private. As the audience asks questions, the other moms are reacting backstage. Even the reunion is scripted! Geez Louise!
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Jeff wonders how Abby feels about Holly after trying in vain for an entire episode to revamp her wardrobe. Abby shares that she has nothing but respect for Holly…she just wishes she'd highlight her cleavage and not her cankles. Holly heads out on the stage, and she's quick to say that she's been taking Abby's fashion advice. Holly is totally cool with constructive criticism. She's not, however, cool with Abby's misunderstanding of Nia's pain disorder. It seems that Abby and Holly have buried the hatchet and have a mutual respect for one another. On a side note, we're almost fifteen minutes in and I'm angry at Lifetime for introducing such strong audience participation into this reunion. No one cares about the pre-planned audience questions! Do they? Anyone?
The once tight twosome of Kelly and Christi is revisited, and it's hard to believe that their friendship faltered so much this season after being thick as thieves. Before Jeff dishes on the two mean girl moms, he allows Brooke to perform a beautiful solo. It's a shame she's not totally committed to dance (and I'm not judging…at her age, I was all over the place and think she needs to follow her heart and her extra curricular activities) because she is incredibly talented.
An audience member asks Abby her opinion on Kelly, and Abby responds that Kelly only wants things to be fun for her daughters. Success wasn't built on fun, y'all! Joining Jeff and Abby, Kelly explains that she's tried to swallow her tongue for most of the season in hopes of getting her daughters back into Abby's good graces. When asked why she didn't try to call Christi more often, Kelly admits she could have done more. Kelly does say that she called Christi multiple times to no avail. Backstage, Christie tries to roll her eyes at this news…until Holly reminds her that Kelly DID call her…she just didn't answer. On stage with Kelly, Christi admits to hurt feelings because Kelly wasn't calling as often as she used to call. That's a different story, isn't it? Kelly is livid that Christi is back tracking. Kelly states that Abby hates both her and Christi, and she knows that Abby would side with her in the argument. Yup! When Christi accuses Abby of being mean to Chloe to get at her, Abby storms off stage. Abby may not like Christi, but she has the utmost faith in her daughter.
After Abby escapes to the green room, Christi states that she hates that her daughter has been called stupid by her dance teacher on every occasion. In the viewing room, Abby reveals that she's looked up "stupid" in a thesaurus, and she's ready to use a plethora of synonyms against Chloe in the future. Christi hates that her relationship with Kelly has suffered, and she defends herself when Jeff accuses her of pushing a camera man. The women seem to bond over the fact that they are both hated by Abby, and they turn their biting tongues on Jill…who they actually like now.
Jill heads out to join Kelly and Christi, and Jill admits that Kathy makes her much angrier than Abby ever could. Answering audience questions, Jill cites Kendall's new headshots and her under the radar private lessons as a necessity to make her daughter feel better. When Kelly calls her out, Jill wants to agree to disagree…aka, she know she was wrong, but she's not stupid enough to dig a hole defending herself. Luckily, Chloe interrupts with a solo performance. She is incredibly graceful, as always.
After a highlight reel of some of the season's more dramatic moments, Maddie treats viewers to a flawless performance. I wish this show had more of this and less of the Abby-mama drama! A proud Melissa, along with all of the moms, joins Jeff on stage. Melissa wants to set the record straight that Kelly did call Christi. Christi calls Melissa a liar, but seems to concede that while Kelly did call her, she didn't put forth the effort she should have. Abby's dog's death is revisited, and Melissa admits that is was stupid for her to have Maddie dedicate her solo to Abby when the other girls couldn't participate. The women share that they weren't hurt by not being invited to Melissa's wedding, and they agree that MacKenzie should have been allowed to dance on The View because she was part of the team. Of course, Christi reminds everyone about the big deal Melissa made about MacKenzie's injury. Turning the topic to Kathy, Jill believes that she has every reason to be angry at Kathy. Like clockwork, Kathy takes the stage.
Kathy's feelings are hurt that Abby won't speak to her anymore. Has she forgotten about purse-gate? Kathy thinks that she owes Abby a thank-you for always talking about her in the media…Jill asserts that Kathy's criticism of Abby's dancers is extremely disrespectful. Kathy feels that, as a dance professional, she is entitled to critique other dancers. She also believes that Jill is the definition of a studio hopper. Holly is beyond thrilled to end the drama and watch Nia perform a beautiful solo.
Abby resurfaces to give her take on her altercation with Kathy. Kathy believes that Abby started the fight by tossing her bottled water on Kathy. Abby claims that science, not anger, caused the force of the water in the bottle to push off the cap and drench Kathy…and she promises she was quick to apologize. Kathy isn't buying her excuse for a second (neither am I), but Abby shares that Kathy's pocketbook hurl caused her multiple bruises. Kathy gets on Jill for butting in to their drama. Answering an audience question, Abby is adamant that she's never regretted anything she's ever said in front of her dancers. Jeff tries to change the subject, and he introduces the group number "Runaways" to bring an end to the first installment of the reunion. Did anything get accomplished with these ladies?
Next week, Kristie 2.0 joins the moms, and Kathy and Abby continue their childish rants.
TELL US-WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THE FIRST HOUR OF THE REUNION? ARE YOU TEAM KELLY OR CHRISTI?
[Photo Credit: Lifetime]