Last night's Dance Moms was a lesson in democracy.  If I had to cast my ballot for most ridiculous dance teacher, Abby Lee Miller would certainly get my vote!

It's pyramid time, and MacKenzie is on the bottom followed by Brooke, who, according to Abby, needs to figure out if she really wants to be a dancer.  Chloe is also on the lowest tier, with Abby blaming her for her trio placing second.  Kendall rounds out the bottom for being part of the second loser trio.  The last place spot in the middle of the pyramid goes to Maddie for—you guessed it!–being part of the trio.  Paige is third on the pyramid because Kelly has gotten good at not sparring with Abby.  Nia is in second place for flying under the radar.  Newbie Asia graces the top of the pyramid.

A crying MacKenzie complains of feeling dizzy when Asia's name is announced, and Abby makes her sit out of the group number.  Asia is MacKenzie's size equal, so with MacKenzie out, Abby is unsure as to whether she'll actually dance in the group dance which has the conservatives facing off against the liberals in a politically themed number.  Both Asia and Maddie get solos.  Abby mixes things up by adding Chloe into the solo competition.  Maddie's solo is called "I'm Trying" while Chloe's is "Am I Here To Stay?"  Nice double meanings there!


While the girls are working on the group routine "Free the People," Asia is working on her "Rosie the Riveter" solo.  Chloe and Maddie also get some one-on-one time with Abby to rehearse.  New Kristie wonders why Abby is pitting these girls against one another, and original Christi explains that Maddie has the advantage because Abby considers Melissa to be a better dance mom.  Abby reminds Maddie that in politics, like dance, it's who you know and what you can do for them that gets you ahead.  Hint, hint, Melissa!

At Melissa's house, she chats with her daughters about potentially being home schooled so they would have more time to dance and pursue other creative venues like voice and piano.  Maddie is all about having more time to devote to the ALDC, and while MacKenzie claims she likes the idea, she can't help but thinking about her friends at school.  At the studio, Melissa shares her plans for home schooling with the other moms, and Holly wonders if she is making this decision for the wrong reasons. 


The troupe is practicing the group number, and Asia's role is merely to run around waving a flag.  Kelly wonders if Kristie is worried that Asia's skill won't be recognized since she's not doing much actually dancing.  Kristie isn't concerned and remarks that everyone important already knows what an amazing dancer her daughter is.  Holly takes major offense to this statement much to the amusement of her counterparts.  I love when Holly gets heated!

The moms are working on the costumes, and they are not very keen on Abby's idea to create the girls' booty shorts out of an American flag.  Most of the moms are in agreement that it's totally unpatriotic and disrespectful.  Abby has Maddie and Chloe practicing together in hopes of sparking competition, and Holly is thrilled that Chloe will have a chance to show her talent as National Champion.  However, Christie is worried how her daughter will take the pressure of being up against Maddie.  In true Abby fashion, she makes MacKenzie watch Asia rehearse so the little girl will know that Asia is improving while MacKenzie is sitting on her bum.  Abby then chastises Kendall in the group number, and when Jill approaches her, she's floored to hear Abby call her daughter a brat.  Yet, she still allows Kendall to keep dancing for Abby…go figure!


The ALDC arrives in Philadelphia for the competition, and Jill comments that Asia was crying in the dressing room a few evenings before.  Abby calls her out for tattling on a seven-year-old, and she reminds the troupe who the team's crybaby is.  Poor KendallHolly is proud that no flags were harmed in the making of the girls' costumes, as they were able to use fabric and handkerchiefs.  The moms are very nervous about Abby's use of an American flag in the dance because they don't want the dancers to seem disrespectful.  The lyrical number is beautiful.  However, Paige gets railed for holding the flag incorrectly, although most of the moms blame Asia for wrongly draping it over Paige. 

In another lesson in politics, Abby wants both the moms and the dancers to do a silent vote after Chloe and Maddie compete in the solo division.  No pressure there!  Asia's solo is first, and her Rosie the Riveter looks likes she belongs in a burlesque show.  She's a talented girl, but she needs to tone it down!  Before Chloe dances, Abby passes out ballots to all of the moms.  Chloe is extremely graceful, and she's amazing as always.  Maddie also serves up an incredible performance.  Sidebar, I'm starting to get a little crush on the bearded judge they keep showing…is that weird?  Poor MacKenzie overhears her mom say she hopes that one day her youngest daughter will be as good as Maddie. 


[This guy…creepy or not?  I’ve been watching too much Dance Moms!]

Before the awards ceremony, Abby has all the girls and moms cast their votes.  The group number takes second place, and Abby is not happy at all.  Asia takes the mini solo top award for the second week in a row.  In the junior solo division, Chloe takes second place to Maddie's first prize.  My heart breaks a bit for Chloe.  In the staging area, Abby counts the votes, and Maddie beats Chloe seven to three.  Christi is livid that Abby has taken another opportunity to put down her daughter.


Next week, Abby is asked to co-host the View, and she continues to pit Asia against MacKenzie.  The moms question how serious MacKenzie's injury actually is.


[Photo Credit: Lifetime]


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