Step It Up and Dance: Episode 3 "Battle Zone" Recap
Step It Up and Dance: Episode 3 "Battle Zone" Recap
It's Thursday night, so you know that it's time to get good and drunk in the Step It Up and Dance drinking game. The rules: take a shot every time someone says, "Step it up" or "Step up." This does not include the opening theme song, which has at least seven "Step it up"s. That would just be crazy.

Previously on Step It Up and Dance, the dancers performed a very difficult Apache dance for Cati Jean. Oscar Campisi won the Callback Performance challenge, so he has immunity tonight.
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Tonight's episode begins with Miguel Zarate mourning the loss of his "sister" James Alsop who was eliminated last week. Why did they have to break them up? Elizabeth Berkley comes over to the apartment with coffee and muffins. She gets teary while describing what it feels like to watch the dancers perform every week. She and Jessica Feltman must be soul sisters, what with the crying.

Jerry Mitchell greets the dancers in the rehearsal studio with guest choreographer Dave Scott by his side. Dave demonstrates how to do a hip hop battle with the help of Rob Hoffman, the star of Step Up 2: The Streets. (Shot #1!) Janelle Ginestra auditioned for Step Up 2 (Shot #2!) but didn't make it. Tovah Collins is immediately worried about the battle because she's not a hip hop dancer.

After the demonstration battle, Dave gives the dancers one hour to learn some of his choreography. As usual, there's a lot of "haw! boom-gah!" types of noises to describe the pop and lock movements. It looks like an impossible task to learn all of those intricate movements in an hour, but the dancers are talented enough to pick it up quickly.

In the Audition Challenge, the dancers are split into two groups, the boys and the girls. Each group performs together Dave's routine, and then at the end, each dancer gets an 8-count to freestyle. Jessica's freestyle includes the worm (ha!), and not a technically proficient worm, either. Oscar's freestyle consists entirely of ballet moves. Cody Green has a background in ballet, but he surprises everyone by busting out with some break-dancing moves.

Dave picks his three favorites: Cody, Janelle and Miguel. These three are the crew captains, and they get to pick two crew members each. Janelle picks Michael Silas and Tovah. Cody picks Mochi Camaya and Jessica. Miguel picks Nick Drago and Oscar. This week, there won't be any winning team or elimination team, as in past weeks. Instead, the three crews will have to battle it out on the streets, or, a studio decorated to look like the streets. Each crew will have 30 minutes to rehearse and they'll have to choreograph two 20-second combinations and work through some freestyle moves. Cody is worried about his street cred because he's from Canada.

Janelle's crew rehearses first. Janelle wants to "clown" their competitors, which is the hip hop equivalent of heckling their competition. Jerry loves the clowning parts. They name themselves Red Everest.

Cody's team's name is Breakin' Blue. Jessica seems to have the most trouble getting into the hip hop groove. By the time their 30 minutes is up, it still looks like they haven't gotten their entire routines done.

Miguel's team is BT Slam, as in Black T-shirt Slam. Their routine has a very cute portion in which Oscar pretends to pull back on Miguel and Nick as if they were on leashes, and Miguel and Nick lift their legs on each other like dogs marking their territory.

The teams are taken to a graffiti'd warehouse for the big battle. I guess the graffiti is supposed to make it look urban. The judges, Elizabeth Berkley, Vincent Paterson and Nancy O'Meara, are there.

The first battle is Red Everest versus BT Slam. Tovah battles Oscar. All Oscar does is a series of pirouettes in his freestyle, so Janelle answers back with a whole bunch of turns herself. Miguel's freestyle is really creative in a pompous and mocking way. Dave is asked to pick the winner, but he passes the buck to the crowd, and the crowd prefers Red Everest.

Next battle is Breakin' Blue versus BT Slam. The only memorable moments are when Nick flips the bird, and Jessica does the worm again. I think that's her only hip hop move. Mochi's freestyle is really unremarkable. This time, the crowd prefers Breakin' Blue, meaning that BT Slam is going straight to elimination.

For the final battle, it's Breakin' Blue versus Red Everest. Janelle's second freestyle is awesome, with a lot of aerials. Jessica's is pretty sloppy and so not hip hop. (Janelle confessionals, "This is a competition. Jessica needs to step it up." – Shot #3!) There is a hilarious shot of Vincent Paterson, an average-looking middle-aged white guy, grooving to the beat. The crowd again favors Red Everest, so the Breakin' Blue crew is up for elimination, and Red Everest is the winning team. Dave thanks the crowd of, like, six people for coming and that the winning and losing dancers will be determined back at the Step It up and Dance stage (shot #4!).

Elizabeth welcomes Red Everest to the Step It Up and Dance (shot #5!) main stage. The judges have nothing but praise for this team. Nancy calls them all "filthy." I find it so amusing when old people are down with what the kids are saying these days. The judges deliberate amongst themselves. Dave thinks that Janelle stepped up as crew leader (#6) so he chooses her to be the winner. She's got immunity for next week's challenge now.

Elimination time. The members of Breakin' Blue and BT Slam are brought out on stage. Nancy actually has nothing bad to say about Miguel for once. Rob Hoffman wishes that Oscar stepped outside the box. (Oh! So close but that's not enough for shot #7.) Oscar has immunity, so the judges agree that the worst three are Mochi, Jessica and Nick. Mochi and Nick are safe. But for Jessica, the show is over, and it's time for her last dance. She is ushererd into the single lightbulb-lit empty studio for her last dance.

Next week on Step It Up and Dance (Does this count as shot #7 even though it's the teaser for next week's episode? I'm going to go ahead and say it doesn't count because six shots in an hour is puh-lenty!), there will be clog dancing! I can't wait!



-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of Bravo)

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