(How does someone 18 dance so well? Partial answer: she started when she was three.)
Being philosophically minded, I enjoy the more profound sub-texts of the show as much as the overt dancing.
Now, having just written "profound sub-texts," I guess I've got to come up with some -- since like most bloggers I tend to write first and think afterwards.
Wednesday night, for the first time I voted for a couple of the contestants. Usually we watch a recording several days later, but the finals were too much of an attraction to wait for. I picked up a phone and punched in the numbers for Evan and Jeanine.
Evan is a great example of the sometimes-true adage, nice guys finish last. This is a fascinating subject, which, not surprisingly, has earned its own Wikipedia page.
Of the twenty finalists, Evan clearly was the nicest guy. Including the gals. He was regularly criticized by the judges for being too bland, too non-assertive in his partner dancing, too reluctant to let his personality blaze forth on the dance floor.
I liked Evan. I didn't think he was the best dancer, but I voted for him because I wanted to see the heads of the judges explode if he ended up winning.
One of their greatest compliments after a dance performance is, "That was so dirty!" Meaning, sexy, passionate, dangerous, edgy.
What this points to, philosophically, is Yin-Yang.
People may claim allegiance to light, truth, love, and God, but most of us also are attracted to dark, false, hate, and Devil. We distrust one-sided nice guys or gals as being out of balance.
The Wikipedia article discusses evidence pro and con on the question, "Are women attracted more to nice guys or bad boys?" Whichever, it's clear that dancing judges are much more inclined to get in bed with the latter.
So are voters. Jimmy Carter was our nicest guy president in recent memory. And also one of the most vilified (or at least disrespected). Bill Clinton, a classic bad boy president, is still highly popular.
Because he appeared to be real in a way that Carter wasn't. Which is unfair, just as Evan's being dissed for his nice-guy persona also is.
If someone is genuinely nice, that's their real. However, this also is reality: most people enjoy some dark-side spice with their life, not unalloyed bland sweetness and light. This is what doomed Evan.
He deserves a lot of credit for getting to the final three. It just wasn't surprising that Evan failed to make it to the So You Think You Can Dance winner's circle.
Nice guys have a lot going for them. On the dance floor, though, niceness only gets you so far.
Here's an example of going beyond -- way beyond -- nice into Oh, yeah! joy. This video makes me feel great every time I watch the terrific boogie-woogie dancers.