‘America’s Best Dance Crew’: Fanny Pak vs. Super Cr3w
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It had to happen, but again, it probably was an episode too soon. Super Cr3w, with its skill, heart and battletude, should easily have been the top crew, but that distinction went to Houston’s SoReal Cru. In Lil Mama’s first assessment of them, she said that they reminded her of Kaba Modern, and she’s right in terms of style. SoReal is smooth and talented, but most of all, popular. Like Boogie Bots, their popularity probably helped them through rough patches. Unlike Boogie Bots, they also usually perform really well. Despite criticism, they’ve been a highlight this season -- a season Lil Mama and Shane summarized.
But against Fanny Pak and Super Cr3w? On ‘80s night?! As you would think, the throwback hoofers of Fanny Pak and the breakdancing battlers Super Cr3w thrived with their challenges. It wasn’t much of a contest. JC Chasez may have said it best when uttering: ‘If you think that SoReal Cru outdanced these two crews this episode ...’ Then he was drowned out by the audience’s agreeable shouts and dismissive boos. What he continued to say was that you’re wrong if think SoReal Cru is in their class. The judges gave Fanny Pak a standing ovation (season’s first, as was pointed out to me by a commenter and Mario Lopez) after their Missy Elliott performance, and Super Cr3w’s routine caused Missy to call her own video ‘whack.’ So how did SoReal end up on top? It’s all about votes, fair or unfair, and that’s been part of what Shane calls a great season.
Back to the show.
The ‘80s music was not SoReal Cru‘s element, and it showed. Bell Biv Devoe’s ‘Poison,’ Bobby Brown’s ‘Every Little Step’ and more were used in their mix, and ‘Breakin’’ was the film they had to emulate. The performances were a bit stiff (Was that the ‘Roger Rabbitt’? Hardly.), and their creativity lacked a bit of inspiration (the brooms seemed to slow everything down in their second routine). Everyone has a down night, but when it’s so hotly contested, flaws are magnified. And this is no ‘pile on SoReal time,’ either. They were respectable last week. Voting was based on last week ... so fine, let it go. This week? They didn’t perform as well as Fanny Pak or Super Cr3w, and that’s what everyone sees.
Super Cr3w‘s roots are in the 80s, when the explosion of break-dancing occurred. Velour sweat suits, Kangol hats and huge gold chains is how it was, and how they came out. Dancing to Digital Underground’s ‘Humpty-Hump,’ Cameo’s ‘Word Up’ and more, Super Cr3w brought back the old school with the running man, the wop, and a breakin’ twist. Then came their ‘Footloose’ tribute. A lot of energy and familiarity, though not as strong as the first routine, except for the triple head spins, which may have helped put them over the top.
Fanny Pak. ‘80s challenge? The retro crew gets its own decade to groove to. Dancing to the Teddy Riley sound of ‘New Jack Swing,’ Vanilla Ice’s ‘Ice, Ice Baby’ and more, Fanny Pak showed that they can dance. Not that they were just creative, or great with choreography, but can just straight dance. Glenda, Tiffani and crew sweated it out, then cooled off. Their second performance was interpreting ‘Flashdance.’ Their concept was, as usual, greatness. Re-creating the dance tryout atmosphere of the movie -- and substituting Lil Mama, Shane and JC was brilliant -- the crew had another creative hit. But the actual dancing may not have been as exciting as the look and setup. So, when having to judge using both performances, the judges sent the popular crew back to the Valley (leaving a little girl with a great hat next to me in tears!). Above, JC speaks about the group, and a somber Fanny Pak talks about their time on the show.
After being eliminated, the group’s choreographer Matt Cady urged the viewers to ‘vote right’ while speaking to Mario. Some message boarders also say that Fanny Pak member Beau also pointed at Super Cr3w’s banner as theirs fell.
In the mini crew battle at the end of the show, there was a bit of competitve flavor going on between Super Cr3w and SoReal Cru. Despite Fanny Pak’s exit, this should still (hopefully) be a good finale.
-- Jevon Phillips