dance moms tribal group

I can’t imagine the pressure most dancers feel when preparing for a national competition, but it has to be next to impossible to train when your dance teacher is the wench known as Abby Lee Miller. Dance Moms just keeps getting more and more ridiculous, does it not? On last night’s episode, Christ-y is invited to rejoin the group after Abby’s mini-me assures her boss that Sarah’s turns are improving ten-fold during her private lessons. Abby warns Christ-y to keep her mouth shut or else she and her daughter will be banned for good…again. 

Instead of a pyramid, Abby has fashioned a totem pole for her ranking, and Nia is on the very bottom for not having enough facial expressions. MacKenzie is above her for being too quick, followed by Kendall for lacking turn-outs. Tea is above Kendall for being on the winning team, as is Chloe. She’s just one below Maddie who is at the top for garnering the highest score in the competition. This weekend the ALDC is heading to Michigan to compete. MacKenzie, Sarah, and Tea all receive solos. The two lowest scoring little ones will be axed from the Nationals team. Nia has the lead in the group routine which is called tribal council. Abby learns that Ava will be competing with Jeanette’s studio against Tea and MacKenzie. The moms believe that Jeanette wants to get her daughter in front of Abby one more time, but they think it’s unfair given she had her chance last week. Jeanette’s plan is surely going to backfire.

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As the group number rehearses, Nia is taken to task by Abby for not making facial expressions which are up to Abby’s liking. Abby wants her sporting her Native American headdress as if she’s starring in an old Cher concert. Geez. Also lacking? Sarah’s acting skills in her solo. Abby believes that Sarah needs to be more independent. MacKenzie’s number is sassy and chock full of intense choreography. Likewise, Tea is has a cute solo with lots of facial expressions. However, the other moms plant the seed of doubt that Tea’s choreography will be difficult enough to compete in her given age division. Abby yells at Nia and has Maddie to jump in to show her friend the facial expressions that Abby desires. Abby then chastises Holly for her daughter’s inability to maintain such intense expressions throughout the number.

dance moms abby

On the bus on the way to the competition, Sarah is in tears because she can’t sit with her mom. Christ-y implores her to buck up and show Abby that she can be independent. As Sarah sobs, Holly’s mother hen instinct kicks in and she convinces Sarah to sit at the back of the bus with her teammates. Of course, Abby screams at the poor child that she doesn’t train cry babies.  At the competition, the moms are talking smack about Jeanette, and Tea’s mom takes it upon herself to share this gossip with Jeanette. When will these mothers learn? 

dance moms nia

Nia is feeling the pressure of being the featured dancer in the group number. I have to say, the routine is fantastic. The costumes are incredible, and Nia gives good face, as does Chloe, MacKenzie, and, of course, Maddie. Holly is both elated and relieved with her daughter’s performance, and even Abby is all smiles. Sarah’s solo is flawless. Her expressions rival those of Maddie’s. In fact, it’s almost like watching a smaller version of Maddie on the stage. Abby is shocked and impressed. Tea’s dance is adorable, and Abby is pleased. However, she admit s that MacKenzie’s choreography is difficult enough to compete with the older girls. MacKenzie’s dance is sassy, but both her dance and Tea’s left a lot to be desired according to Abby. Unfortunately, Ava does a phenomenal job, so Abby needs to switch up her game. She instructs Melissa to enter Maddie in the solo competition. There goes MacKenzie and Tea’s chances to compete in Nationals.

dance moms nia 2

Even though it doesn’t affect Chloe, Christi can’t believe what has happened. I kind of hope that Ava still wins, but I know these competitions are so staged. Abby doesn’t care if the moms are pissed…she wants to win whatever the cost. Backstage, all of the mothers can’t believe that Melissa allowed Maddie to dance. Jill and Holly both believe that Melissa robbed MacKenzie of an opportunity to shine in her own right, and they tell her as much. Not surprisingly, Melissa refuses to see that she didn’t anything to favor Maddie over her sister. While it’s off the subject, what the hell is up with Abby’s tan? Gracious!

A thrilled Sarah wins the petite solo division. In the junior division, Tea places fifth with MacKenzie garnering third. The top two spots are separated by only one point, and it’s no surprise that Ava scores runner up to Maddie.  The ALDC also wins top prize for the group number. In the dressing room, Abby sings Nia’s praises, but then drones on and on about how slow Nia is to catch on to things. Jeanette and Ava come in to visit with the girls and Abby cuts Ava from the select team. Jeanette doesn’t feel like she did anything wrong, but Tea’s mom totally warned her! As for Nationals? Those solos are still up for grabs…well, except for Maddie’s!

TELL US-WHAT DID YOU THINK OF LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE? SHOULD MELISSA HAVE LET MADDIE DO A SOLO AGAINST MACKENZIE? 

[Photo Credit: Lifetime]

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