On New Year's Day, So You Think You Can Dance executive producer Nigel Lythgoe (you know, the one who looks like Michael Caine in Austin Powers, but more orange) announced via Twitter that Fox has canceled the results show portion of his reality dance competition show. To be honest, I really couldn't care less about SYTYCD (unless it was The Bachelor), but my predisposition to hate Fox and everything they stand for leads me to be extremely outraged by this news. I mean, sure, I never watch the results show anyway, and I think it's pretty much a waste of an hour of television and an excuse for host Cat Deeley to wear one more ridiculously shiny dress each week, but if Dancing with the Stars and American Idol get to have boring, superfluous results shows, then SYTYCD deserves to have one too. This is especially true when you consider the fact that the SYTYCD results show is actually mildly important because it's where the dancers with the lowest number of votes have to "dance for their lives," after which the judges decide who will be sent home. Take that, Ryan Seacrest and your insufferably dramatic dragging-out of an announcement that could have been made in a telegram!
This is one of the only things that I really like about SYTYCD, because unlike its singing-oriented sister show American Idol, the dancers sent home are ultimately chosen by the judges, who are actually good at what they do, despite often appearing to be rather batty. The viewers still maintain some form of power in that their votes determine who is in the bottom every week, but as we've seen in the past, American can't always be trusted to vote for the right people (see: Taylor Hicks), so it's nice to have judges who actually do something other than make suggestive comments to underage contestants and promote their own upcoming albums. By eliminating the results show, Fox is changing the format of SYTYCD, which could either help or hurt the show's already struggling ratings. However they manage to retool the format of SYTYCD, I hope it still gives the judges the final say on who stays and who goes home.
The new setup might actually be good news for the contestants, who will have one less routine to learn each week, since the results show typically features a group number with all the dancers. On the downside, without the results show, where will we get to watch Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull perform their latest pop/reggaeton crossover hit? (Okay, so I may have actually watched one or two episodes of the results show.)
For the most part, I'm just upset that the only good reality dancing competition show is in danger of being canceled. (Granted, I'm not sure how likely it is that Fox would cancel the show altogether, but it's obviously at risk if they're making such a dramatic change.) SYTYCD is the one show that features talented dancers, well-choreographed routines (it's won four Emmys for Outstanding Choreography), and most importantly, no D-list celebrities trying to do the Cha-Cha.
I'll be interested to see what Fox puts in SYTYCD's time slot instead. At least the SYTYCD results show already had a built-in audience, even if it wasn't a huge one. What are they so sure will perform better on Thursday nights? Unless it's new episodes of Firefly, I'm pretty sure I won't be tuning in.