Going into this season of Dance Moms, I wondered whether or not the show could survive not having the drama that the dynamic between Christy and Abby so easily provided. I should have known other moms would be willing to volunteer as tribute to fill that void.

We’ve reached the end of season 5 and that means only one thing: a reunion show. I am still unclear as to why we need a reunion show. These shows used to be an opportunity for the girls to give encore performances to the viewers’ favorite dances. This one just seems like an opportunity to open up old wounds.

Deja Vu — All Over Again

The moms are backstage in hair and makeup getting ready for the show. They start receiving texts from Abby telling them not to show up. I’m not going to pretend like this isn’t weird. Abby has been so ridiculous this season, it’s worse than trying to figure out someone’s strategy on Big Brother. Nothing she does makes any sense whatsoever. The moms ignore her texts — because why wouldn’t they?

Abby finally realizes she is going to be the only one who doesn’t show up. She decides to make an appearance. Maybe I’m reading too much into this. It is a reality show, after all, but it seems to me that Abby has major insecurity problems. I’m definitely not a therapist, by any means — I’m a freelance writer — but the stunts she pulls are so off-the-wall. I think the only reason she shows up is because she would look bad if the moms were there and she wasn’t.

I think she genuinely cares what people think about her, which is so confusing because the way she acts is opening the door for criticism. The deja vu of it all makes this a really tedious show to enjoy, I’m just saying. The moms constantly fighting is completely unnecessary. Let’s think of the children!

Nia-tionals (Let’s Run It into the Ground)

The reunion revisits Nationals. Of course, Jill and Abby claim that the competition was rigged. Abby won’t say the words; she only holds up a handwritten piece of construction paper with “fixed” written on it. Jess asks whether or not they believe the competition was fixed the previous four years they took home the title. The crowd oohs and aahs.

Holly and Jess were the only moms who stuck around after Nationals. Jeff, the owner of the competition, comes backstage and talks to them. He has only ever put on fair competitions. He thinks it’s unfortunate that it has come to this, talking about Abby and the other moms’ behavior after the competition. Abby claims to have never been to one of his competitions before, but Jess points out that she has supported him for four years.

Jeff Collins, the host of the reunion and executive producer of Dance Moms, asks fellow EP Bryan Stinson if the ALDC has ever been to a Jeff competition before. Bryan quickly states they have — at Abby’s request, nonetheless. Holly gives an amazing side-eye, and that’s pretty much the end of this discussion.

Same Old Song and Dance

I keep waiting for bombshells to be dropped during this reunion. I keep waiting for Melissa to wake up and realize that whether she wants to admit it or not, she plays favorites with Maddie and Mackenzie. I keep waiting for Jill to realize that Kendall will never be as good as Maddie — at least in Abby’s eyes — so she doesn’t need to bring down the other moms/girls while attempting to claw her way to the top. I keep waiting for Holly to realize it’s really not worth it. But none of that happens. It’s the same argument over and over and over. There are no new viewpoints. The arguments are practically verbatim to what we’ve already seen throughout this season. Everyone seems to be at a standstill.

It’s Hollywood, Not Holly Wood

The question comes up about who has changed the most since the trip to LA, who has become the most Hollywood. Jill says that it’s Holly. She accuses Holly and Nia of constantly being late to and missing practices to pursue other opportunities. And for some reason, that’s not okay. What is wrong with Holly wanting her daughter to have access to opportunities? I don’t get it. Why is it wrong for Nia to miss a rehearsal here or there to shoot a music video or go to an audition, but it’s completely okay for Maddie to miss a Nationals competition to dance in a Sia video? This is not Kendall’s week, Jill. And let me just say, as a former Candy Apple — Jill, you’re just lucky to be here.

In Not-News News…

Jeff tells us some exciting news: Kira is expecting! We found this out a few episodes ago, so it’s not really news. It may be a little exciting, yes, but definitely not news. Actually, this gets more awkward than exciting.

Abby was never shy in expressing her opinion of Kira’s pregnancy out of wedlock. Her feelings on the matter are questioned during this reunion. I feel like I need to preface this with an Abby Nonsense Alert — she says that Kalani is at an impressionable age. She goes on and on about how she wants to see Kalani happy, that she loves her like she’s her own. To me, it’s hard to listen to this and have any faith in what Abby says. If Abby truly felt the things she says, there is no way she would be as verbally abusive toward these kids the way she is. Luckily, this whole spiel is interrupted by Kira’s hot boyfriend, David. I half expected him to storm out of the wings and go on a tantrum just to fit in.

…And in Actual News

David doesn’t get on one knee, but he does propose. Kira says yes. All is right with the world, in Abby’s eyes — for now. The girls are excited because they can finally be in a wedding. The moms are excited too because — ugh, that blemish of being in our dance company as a single mother is gone.

What’s Next?

Season 5 of Dance Moms has officially come to an end. What’s next for the ALDC? Abby has trips planned all across the globe, assuming she can find her passport. We’re all wondering who is going to man the not one but two studios while she is away? I have a feeling everything will be just fine because she was gone for half of this season anyway.

Encore Performances

Here are the encore performances we get to see: 


  • “Don’t Fence Me In” — the group dance with the chain link fence.
  • “Burn” — Kendall’s dubstep solo.
  • “Panic Room” — the group dance Kalani was benched from performing

We also get to see Nia’s video for her song “Slay,” which premiered during Nationals. It really was Nia-tionals, afterall.

Thank you to everyone for hanging out this season and reading the recaps. I’m still fairly new to this job and really appreciate each and every one of you who take the time to vote in the polls and leave comments. Until next time…

(Image courtesy of Lifetime)

Casey Cummings

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV