Tensions between Abby Lee Miller and her dance team have never been higher. So far in season 7 of Dance Moms, the Junior Elite moms have tried to put their serious issues with Abby aside as they prove to her why their daughters should avoid being cut from the team.

However, just when it seems as though things couldn’t get worse for the ALDC, a shocking rival from Abby’s past returns to seek her revenge. How will Abby and the team handle this? Let’s find out in this episode, “Abby’s Worst Nightmare.”

Dance Moms Recap: Abby Rocks the ALDC with a Shocking Announcement >>>

Who’s Cut?

The Junior Elite and Mini moms reunite inside the ALDC studios. At the end of the recent competition, Abby broke down over the thought of announcing the cuts she promised to make. Each mom is scared that their daughter could be the one to leave the team. However, no matter who is sent home, they hope Abby makes her decision right now. “Whatever that team is going to be, I hope she creates it and she creates it now. Enough is enough,” Holly says.

Abby then makes her first decision regarding the cuts. She confirms that none of the Junior Elites will be sent home since she made a commitment to them five years ago. The Minis, on the other hand, are not as lucky. Abby will be making cuts to their team but just not yet. She then sends the Minis home because none of them will be dancing in the upcoming competition. The Mini moms are outraged that their girls will not have the chance to prove themselves to Abby, but she could care less.

For the competition, the Junior Elites will travel to San Diego, California, for Fierce National Talent, where they will be joined by some very special guests. During the break, Abby traveled the country, searching for new girls to add to the Junior Elites. She found two girls who she loves, and they will be dancing alongside Brynn, Kalani, Kendall and Nia in the lyrical group routine, “We Go On.”

There will also be two duets. The first is Brynn and Kendall in “My Shadow and Me,” which Abby describes as having an underlying spirit of evil. Kalani and Nia, on the other hand, will be performing the contemporary “Young and Restless.” The Junior Elite moms are ecstatic over hearing Abby’s plans for the competition, but they seem to be even more happy that there will finally be no Minis around.

The Return of the Candy Apples

The ALDC may think they are in for one of their best competitions in some time, but someone is looking to mess all that up. Across the country in Ohio, Abby’s number one rivals, Cathy Nesbitt-Stein and her Candy Apples, are back!

It’s been quite a while since we’ve seen Cathy on Dance Moms since she has taken some time to really work on perfecting her Candy Apples. The team is even made up of some of the ALDC’s other former rivals as well, including Jeanette, whose daughter Ava was rejected and ridiculed by Abby countless times, and even “Black Patsy,” who previously shoved her finger right in Jill’s face during her short time at the ALDC.

In returning to the show and competing against Abby in the competition, Cathy’s goal is to take down the ALDC. She even hopes Abby will have nightmares of her when pulling her blanket over her head at night “in her cell,” referring to the possible jail time Abby is facing.

Almost immediately after the Junior Elite moms notice Cathy’s comeback announcement on Instagram, she calls them to confirm the news. Abby doesn’t seem bothered by Cathy’s return, but we all know she is enraged on the inside. All she tells the mothers is that she plans to “crucify” Cathy because she is sick and tired of her Candy Apples studio.

Despite being nervous about Cathy’s return at first, the moms then see the silver lining in it. They know just how much hatred Abby has for Cathy, so they think this could push Abby to work harder than she ever has to ensure a victory against the Candy Apples.

New Blood

The next day, Abby introduces the Junior Elites to their new teammates. The first is Cameron, who Abby says is mature and could definitely be a star. The other is Daliana, who actually beat Kalani during a previous competition. Abby is confident that these newbies will help bring the ALDC back to its glory days, and she hopes they will motivate the originals to prove why they deserve to stick around. “I want to see the original members sweating every minute they’re in my studio,” Abby explains.

Of course, with new dancers come new mothers as well. Daliana’s mom is named Fernanda, and Cameron’s is Camille. Cameron’s mother actually knows Black Patsy quite well, so she too will do whatever she can to make sure the ALDC doesn’t lose to this woman.

Back in the Candy Apples studio, one of Cathy’s mothers expresses her desire for the team to kick Abby’s butt, to which Cathy responds, “There’s plenty of that to kick.” With the fire burning inside to take down the ALDC, the Candy Apples rehearse their number, which is a piece inspired by horror film characters of the ’70s and ’80s, including Michael Myers and Freddy Krueger.

As the Candy Apples completely kill it in their rehearsal, the ALDC struggles. The Junior Elite moms even notice that their girls are all over the place and not dancing as a team. Will they be able to get it together before one of the most important competitions in Dance Moms history?

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The Competition

Cathy and her team are the first to make it to the competition. Of course, she doesn’t come empty-handed. She brings along a broom, saying that it is Abby’s transportation for the day. Abby ends up taking the broom, which confuses Cathy. Black Patsy, on the other hand, thinks Abby took it to prepare her for her future. “You know they give them jobs in jail, right? So maybe she’s just practicing,” Black Patsy explains.

The ALDC and the Candy Apples then face off outside the competition. They continuously throw jabs at one another. Black Patsy, specifically, tries to get in Abby’s face, but she just walks away. The Junior Elite moms are confident that their girls’ talents will outshine the negativity of the Candy Apples.

The first act to go on is Brynn and Kendall with “My Shadow and Me.” Their duet looks nice and is executed well, but Brynn’s technique is definitely stronger than Kendall’s. After the girls finish the dance, Black Patsy starts another fight by continuously critiquing the entire number. Jill storms out because she thinks it is “disgusting” that a woman like Black Patsy is allowed inside the competition.

Next up is Kalani and Nia’s “Young and Restless.” This one seems stronger than Brynn and Kendall’s, as Kalani and Nia are completely in sync with one another. Abby thinks this number could end up taking home first, even though they had to deal with the “trash” from Cathy and her Candy Apples.

Outside the competition, Abby and the ALDC clash with Cathy and the Candy Apples for another war of words. Cathy ends up throwing the biggest insult at Abby that she can by taunting her with her legal issues. “You better just get used to that smack talk because you’re gonna have a lot of that in jail,” Cathy tells Abby.

Cathy’s words are too much for Abby, so she decides to leave the competition before the group numbers even go on. She explains that Cathy’s words make the ALDC look bad, and she has had enough.

The Candy Apples then take the stage with their group routine, “I’m Back! I’m Your Nightmare!” Clearly, Cathy and her girls are back with a vengeance because they deliver a showstopping number. All of the dancers are sharp and perfectly display their high level of technique. The ALDC knows this is a stellar number, so they are worried whether or not their girls will be able to top it.

The final act is the ALDC’s “We Go On.” This a simply beautiful number, and it even invokes a feeling of nostalgia. Recently, Abby gave the Junior Elites tacky group numbers, which are full of gimmicks and unnecessary props. However, “We Go On” is reminiscent of the lyrical numbers they performed during their glory days, which helped them win so many first place trophies. The moms are in agreement that the team is truly back.

The Awards

Despite Abby thinking it would win first, Kalani and Nia’s duet wins third. Brynn and Kendall’s does only slightly better by winning second. The team seems to brush off these awards because the group prizes are truly what matter in this competition.

Which team will prevail? Abby will be happy to hear that her girls win first place for “We Go On,” while Cathy and her Candy Apples only win third. It has been quite some time since the Junior Elites won first for a group routine, and they are confident that this is just the beginning.

After the awards, Cathy and the Candy Apples, specifically Black Patsy, get in the Junior Elite moms’ faces for a third time during this competition. Black Patsy doesn’t seem to make any sense, as she attempts to wildly berate the moms. In the end, Cathy says that it is the ALDC that are the true losers since their leader is going to jail. She then confirms that she and her Candy Apples will compete in the next competition for another round of chaos.

What did you think of the episode? Did Abby make the right decision by not letting the Minis compete? Do you think she should have cut some girls from the Junior Elites? What did you think of the new girls? Were you excited or disgusted to see Cathy and the Candy Apples return? Let us know all of your thoughts in the comments section and in the poll below.

Dance Moms season 7 airs Tuesdays at 9/8c on Lifetime. For even more news on Abby and the ALDC, like our Dance Moms Facebook page.

(Image courtesy of Lifetime)

Jordan Dunnigan

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV