Dance Moms Recap: JoJo The No-No

dance moms jojo

After last week, I wanted to be done with Dance Moms. The way Abby Lee Miller showed her arse talking to (and about) Nia and Kendall about drove me over the edge. However, part of it has to be for the show, right? Granted, I don’t think the girls are acting when we see tears or humiliation, but maybe, just maybe, Abby is all smiles and compliments and kittens and hugs when the cameras aren’t rolling. That’s how I am going to think of it from now on or else I may not make it through the season. Should Jeff Collins and Mona Scott Young get married and become the messiest and most diabolical reality show creating couple ever? I’d totally watch them on Couples Therapy!

After the fight with Abby at the recent competition, Jill and Holly are preparing for the fallout at the ALDC. Holly requests a meeting to clear the air, but the always mature Abby refuses to speak to her. In the pyramid, Abby tells the girls that the mothers questioning her is the same as them doubting her vocation in life. It’s hurtful to her…far more hurtful than the venom she spews at these young girls, of course! Abby congratulates the group on winning the group number and shares that Maddie won’t be competing this week as she’ll be performing at a benefit concert in Los Angeles. She then reveals the girls’ new head shots, and Kendall comes to the conclusion that even though it was incredibly rude of Abby to leave some of photo shoot, she clearly knows what she’s doing. That said, Kendall is on the bottom of the pyramid for crying in the dressing room when Abby screamed at her. Holly reminds Abby that she also cried last week when served with the court papers, but, no surprise, Abby’s tears were totally appropriate given the circumstance. Kalani is next for being beaten by Maddie and a no-named dancer in the solo division. Nia is third with a strong performance in the group number, followed by MacKenzie. Maddie is on top, and Abby praises that even though she didn’t win, losing every once in a while is good for her. 


The theme of the group number is freedom of religion (what?), and MacKenzie is granted the first solo. Abby warns MacKenzie could be on the solo chopping block if she doesn’t step up to the plate. Abby then compliments her next soloist for always doing fabulous in character driven dances and accepting any challenge given to her without turning into a crybaby. Holly and Nia are both beaming, but Abby then introduces the crew to JoJo from Abby’s Ultimate Dance Competition. She’ll be joining the girls this week and performing a solo. JoJo is sassy and asks if she can replace Chloe. Abby is pleased and admits that JoJo could replace anyone on her team…except her favorite. Melissa seems a bit concerned that JoJo and MacKenzie are going to be going head-to-head. Not shockingly, Jessalyn faces the wrath of the other mothers up in the viewing room. 

dance moms girls

In the group number, Abby has each of the girls embodying a different religion. Nia has a spoken word part, and Holly hopes that the negativity of the fight won’t over shadow Nia’s performance. When Jessalyn asks what happened, she and Holly get into an argument. Jessalyn believes that the mothers should be thrilled that their daughters get to learn under Abby’s tutelage, and they should roll with the punches otherwise. Meanwhile, in the studio, Abby encourages MacKenzie to be more like JoJo when it comes to sass and energy. JoJo is the last child that Melissa wants MacKenzie to model herself after. Jessalyn knows how to push Melissa’s buttons when she asks if she’s upset that MacKenzie is being picked on by Abby. Jessalyn speaks too soon as Abby is reaming JoJo for her lyrical performance. However, the mothers are in shock when Abby changes her routine to suit her strengths. That’s certainly never happened before! Jessalyn gloats that Abby must really like JoJo to do this. Abby then brings in Sarah (daughter of cray-cray Christy) to do JoJo’s original solo. Jessalyn isn’t impressed with Christy at all. 

dance moms abby

JoJo wants to know MacKenzie’s favorite type of dance to perform, and she laughs when she learns it is tap. MacKenzie is following in Maddie’s footsteps, and no one is going to make her feel like tap is less of a dance style. Kalani thinks that JoJo talks far too much for her taste. I do adore Kalani. Jessalyn is doing her best to get into everyone’s heads, sniping that Sarah seems very nervous in rehearsal. As the group practices their routine, Abby lays the blame for a potential loss on Nia’s shoulders in Maddie’s absence. Speaking of Maddie, she’s performing at the Hollywood Bowl with Sia. Did you see her on Saturday Night Live this past weekend? Creepy and wonderful. Maddie calls to check in, and Abby proceeds to belittle all the girls to Maddie. You know, Abby’s hyper favoritism is pretty fake and over-the-top, so Maddie probably hates being separated from her peers. It’s a disaster…it’s almost as bad as this group routine!

dance moms christy

At the competition, Abby is MIA, and Holly believes it’s because Maddie isn’t attending. Gia gives the girls a pep talk, but everyone is a bit leery about the fact Abby isn’t there. Christy is peeved that Abby isn’t there to see Sarah excel at a solo meant for Maddie. Sarah is a very talented little girl, but Jessalyn says Sarah has no place on a YMCA rec team. I hope she’s proud of herself for smack talking about an nine-year-old. Classy lady for sure. JoJo’s solo is different, and she does a great job, although I don’t think she was any better than Sarah. Abby then shows up to applause after missing both solos. Jessalyn whines that she wishes Abby had been present for JoJo’s performance. Of course, she’s there just in time to watch MacKenzie. Her solo is very cute, but Jessalyn thinks that acrobats can only carry a lack of dance technique for so long. When Jessalyn expresses disappointment that Abby was absent, Holly seconds that it was rude of Abby to only show for MacKenzie’s performance. Abby blames traffic and claims she didn’t have a program to know who was performing when. JoJo wonders why Abby wasn’t there, and Abby doesn’t find her sass as cute anymore. 

Jill is concerned that the newbies are going to ruin the group dance, and Holly is worried that Nia will take the blame for any finish less than first. The group dance is beautiful, and damn if I’m not teary again. I find myself so proud of Nia and worried that MacKenzie’s habit is going to fall off of her head. It is wonderful. At the awards ceremony, Sarah wins the entire mini division. Go Sarah! JoJo places third overall in her age group with MacKenzie taking the top spot. The group number gets second place, and I feel like they were robbed. Backstage, Abby criticizes the second place finish, and Jessalyn interrupts to tell Christy that JoJo, as a junior dancer, got two more points that Sarah in her mini division solo. Seriously? Abby reminds Jessalyn that she had to call in Sarah to do a dance that JoJo couldn’t do. Holly interrupts that there is a code of etiquette where the mothers don’t speak like that in front of the children. Kira and Jill back up Holly, and Jessalyn sees nothing wrong with her behavior. Not wanting to feed into her nastiness, the mothers walk out of the studio, leaving Jessalyn bragging that they are threatened by her daughter. 


[Photo Credit: Lifetime]