Thursday, July 24, 2008


You know, I ain't got no issues with "guilty pleasures." Let's define what that term means. That'd be something you take delight in the intake of, but you don't want others to know of that delight. There's no expose here. It ain't no controversy. I don't hide anything. You wanna know, I'll tell you. I like me some "America's Best Dance Crew." Good gawd!

If you're not familiar with the show, it's just like any of these idiotic reality/competition shows where they take some ten or so crews and pen 'em up against each other in a hawdcore throwdown and then three "judges" chime in on what they thought of those performances. The nation votes and then, based on those votes, the bottom two have a face-off. Those two then, based on that performance, are voted on by the "judges" for who stays. What am I sayin'? Don't act like you don't know the show. It's MTV's top rated show and try as you will to avoid the re-runs, you can't. The set-up itself is a corny, Warriors schtick where these different crews with different styles jump off at each other. You got the crew that wears fannypacks. Whatever. You got the breakers. You got the poppers and the lockers. You got the cheerleader girls that just do jumping jacks. You got the crazy acrobatic crews that do backflips off the stage (or "gainers" as I believe they're called). And while, I'm a big fan of backflips and fannypacks, I narrowed it down to six reasons that I love this show. We'll start with the most obvious.


Through empathy, it's impossible to hate this dude. I mean, my heart just emotes all sorts of pity and undescribable admiration for lil' Mario. I don't know, you grow up with a cat, it happens. He's like that dude you went to high school with that just falls off. You see him at the mall and he's all frail and looking like death, gotta drug habit like meth or something. Does time in jail, rehab, whatever. Then you see him a decade later at an Applebee's and he tells you he's getting his life together and he got a job sacking groceries at the supermarket and he's got a girlfriend. He's thinking about taking classes at the community college and you say, "That's great, man. It's so good to see you. I've been wondering what happened to you since Kate told me you got in trouble with the law." That's Mario. And there's really very little that Mario won't do for money. He dances, he watches ferrets jump through hoops of fire, he's on "Hollywood Squares" and now he's wearing tight shirts on MTV working for Randy Jackson. At least the dude's working which is already more than you can say for Lisa Turtle (bless her heart). Just remember, Zack started it, but AC col' ended it.


There's many ways to describe it and it's even easier to just do. When you do something really dope. I mean, truly dope, you just gotta flex it or "pimp it." It's like when Manny hits a ball 450 feet. Dude just stands there like, "What?!" translating to "what are you going to do now?" or "what do you know about that?" On "ABDC," after you finish your set, it's customary to go to the edge of the stage and give the crowd a huge "What?!" and the crowd just eats it up like crazy. Then you walk around in a frenzy like you can't believe how dope you are, bang on your chest again give 'em another "What?!" Check it out as the Boogie Bots finish their round here (the 1:10 mark).

Geez, someone needs to write better material for Mario. Wait, who am I kidding, no one got paid for that. Mario just needs to resist the ad lib. I really wanna do a "What?!" up at the office. Like flip a spreadsheet or come up with a killa macro and then just walk away from the desk flexin' and yelling, "What?! You don't want none of this, homie! What?!"


The crowd can be really reactive on "ABDC" because it's a hype show. They're always on edge. So when it goes to the judges and they have to give honest constructive comments about the performances, you gotta keep it positive or else you're gonna get clowned by the audience. We saw it most commonly with Simon on "American Idol." I mean, once you say somethink like, "I liked the performance, but..." here comes the roar. I mean, the second you say "but" the crowd takes a collective breath, fills their dingy lungs up with that bad Los Angeles sound stage air and then just let's it fly. Now, the skilled (or just deaf) judges can just walk through it, but not N'Sync's JC. Dude gets rattled. He'd better off just not saying anything. It's not like it makes a difference. He'll be mid-sentence and then get blasted by the crowd and then he can't even finish what he was saying. He just sits there, rolls his eyes and says, "Okay, there you go. There you go." I think he should just play with the crowd. Just make them boo so loud that the place just erupts and then he's lifted into the rafters by a series of invisible cables before the place goes up in a riot. Like after the best performance of the evening, JC just goes off the handle like, "It was the worst thing I've ever seen. Your crew sucks so bad. That chick's overweight and shoudn't even be out here dancing and you all know that. You just can't break it do her. The two dude's on the end are terrible dancers and their style is mad whack. I hate everything about you. Not just your dancing, but you. I want to kill you or just have you killed because you suck so bad." Then (poof!) dude just disappears as the crowd descends on his little stool.


There's nothing quite crueler than getting booted off of "American Idol" where they make you sing the song that got your ass kicked off while you're in tears wondering what your next career move is going to be. "Well, Shawn, how about taking us out with that loser song you sang last night? We'll play a sappy montage of your failed attempt at glory while you cry through this loser song one last time." Well, "ABDC" has the "your banner must fall" moment while you dance off the stage. Mario says, "I'm sorry Steely Dans, but your banner must fall." It's very Medieval Times. And then, on queue, their stupid nylon banner falls from the rafters to the floor as the losing crew shuffles off of the stage to Unk's "Walk It Out." I think it'd be funny if they breakdanced to "I Had the Time of My Life" by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes as they exited. It's fun because sometimes, a dude will go off on the edge of stage in some sort of epileptic state and start "What?!"-ing everybody in the crowd like he's chunking "What?!'s" at them.


I just wish I could request the show only have breakers on the show. I don't really care about anyone else. If you ain't breaking, I don't wanna see you. It's as simple as that. You ain't better than the breakers on this show if you ain't doing windmills and sweeps. You will not win. To me, it's all about this Super Cr3w performance (yeah, they biting the number bit, but it's okay--I can't do what they do). Check out this James Brown set and tell me these dude's aint' the illest. Check out the fourteenth second where dude shuffles out front, pulls up the pant legs and then goes into a James Brown solo. I'm also throwin up one the sickest James Brown videos for reference (and inspiration).


Lil Mama who "plays" a judge on "ABDC" is really the Paula Abdul who sits in the middle and merely echoes the comments of her colleagues. Poor girl, though. Her language is so piss poor its actually quite amusing. "Ya'll kill't it tonight." "Ya'll's is so hawd. Ya'll vewy tight." "Your mooments is vewy smoove." I get what she's trying to do and how she's trying to come off, but it's pretty tired. Either way, it's entertaining. There's a drinking game somewhere there for you college kiddies. She really has very little credentials to her name. She just released a record a full year after she topped out at radio with the short-lived "Lip Gloss" and she hasn't even pushed 100K yet. She might dance, but she ain't paid dues like JC. I assume that Shane Sparks has done work, but I'm not big on dancing. I'm betting he's a choreographer er something. Someone let me know. I don't want his name to appear in my Google searches.

It's Friday, folks. And tonight it's Josh and Jabba in Fenway.

Word 'em up.


sarahsmile3 said...

I like it when, after witnissing a truly ill performance, Shane Sparks starts off his critique/praise with "look..." then he laughs and the crowd goes wild as he cracks a smile before praising the dancers. No matter what, however, the judges (except for JC) always end their comments with, "Ya'll gotta come hard next week."

j3 said...

nailed it.

i'm waiting for someone to say, "how hard do you want it?" and then the next week come out in kevlar with uzis and throwing stars yelling, "this hard enough, lil mama?! this hard enough?"